Trans-Mongolian Route

The Trans-Mongolian and Chinese route branches out from the main Trains-Siberian route at Zaudinskiy, 8 km away from Ulan-Ude. The distance between Ulan-Ude and the Russian-Mongolian border is 250 km.
The Trans-Mongolian follows an ancient tea-caravan route from China to Russia and further on to Europe. The railway between Ulan-Ude and the border with Mongolia was built in 1940.

Ulan-Ude: 0 km
Ulan-Ude(founded 1666) is the capital of the Buryat Autonomous Republic, which in the 13th - 17th centuries was part of the vast Mongolian Empire. The city is a classic example of the Eastern influence in Russia.
Zaudinskiy: 8 km
Zaudinskiy is a small town with beautiful surroundings in a suburb of Ulan-Ude. It has a large bread factory. The train makes only a stop-over here.
  Sayantuy: 35-36 km
The train goes through a little station at Sayantuy and then crosses the west bank of a river and heads to Ubukun. The stop-over is only 2 minutes.
  Zagustay: 127 km
The village is only 6 km away from the large coal mining town of Gusinoozersk. The stop-over is 1-5 minutes.
Gusinoe ozero (Goose lake): 129-157 km
The train goes along the western shore of Gusinoe Ozero. The town has a Buddhist temple (datsan) built in 1741 which is one of the main datsan in northern Mongolia (although the town is officially part of Russia). The datsan is opened for viewing but the stop-over is only 1-5 minutes.
Gusinoe ozero town: 138 km
This is a picturesque area with valleys surrounded by mountains. The train travels along the Selenga River and makes a short stop-over in Selendum village.
  Dzhida: 210 km
This is a little village which was originally built for an airbase. The stop-over is 1-5 minutes.
Naushki: 253/0 km
This is a Russian border line where the train stops for 2 or more hours. The stop-over is from 1-3 hours depending on which train.
Sukhbaatar: 21km
Sukhbaatar was founded in 1940 on the banks of the Selenga and Orkhnon rivers. The town was named after the Mongolian warrior leader Suhbaatar. Today it is the capital of the Selenge Province (aimak) with a total population of 20,000. This is the Mongolian side of the border. All luggage is always carefully inspected by customs officers. Please do not take any photos at this stop, if you are caught, your film and possibly camera will be confiscated. The stop-over is approximately 1,5 - 3 hours depending on the train.
Darkhan: 123 km
It takes about 8 hours to travel from Sukhbaatar to Darkhan (380 km). This is the second largest city in Mongolia with a population of 95,5 thousand. Darkhan is an urban city. The south part of Darkhan is quite picturesque. The stop-over is 30-50 minutes.
Ulaanbaatar: 404 km
Ulaanbaatar, the capital of Mongolia. Often described as sunny, peaceful and open, Ulaanbaatar is a city of contrast where modern life comfortably blends with Mongolian traditional lifestyle.
425-470 km
From this point, the train climes uphill, and then slopes down the serpentine of the railway tracks, leaving you with the great opportunity to capture the beauty of this terrane.
Choir: 649 km
The Chojr station features a statue of VVT Ertvuntz, the first Mongolian cosmonaut. This town was an airbase during the Soviet period. Chojr is right in the middle of the Gobi Desert and has a population of approximately 13,000. The train stop-over is 15 minutes.
Dzamin Ude: 1113 km
This is the Mongolian border with China. Here you will have to present your customs declaration and immigration forms. The luggage of Chinese and Mongolia traders and foreign travelers is checked more carefully than others. The whole procedure takes 1-1,5 hours.
Erlyaní (China): from Beijing 842 km
At the station, the wheels of the train are changed to fit the Chinese railway tracks. If you will plan to step off the train , it is recommended you grab some warm clothes. The stop-over is approximately 4 hours.
415 km
This is where, the train crosses the Great Wall of China for the first time.
Datong (China): 371 km
This is a large industrial city with a population of over 2 million. The city is known as an industrial center and for coal mines. One of the main attractions is a group of Buddhist cave temples ñ Yungang for Grottoes. However, the stop-over is short - 8 minutes.
295-272 km
At this point, the train travels along the Great Wall. The best view is around the 284 km mark.
Beijing (China): 0 km
Beijing is the capital of China, one of the centers of early human civilization. Beijing is China's second largest city, after Shanghai. It is a major transportation hub, with dozens of railways, roads and highways passing through the city.