There is no way to know the country better than to see it through the train window – villages, small towns and landscapes that you will never see, preferring an airplane or a car, will float before your eyes.
We have compiled a selection of our favorite Moscow-Europe railway routes for those who are afraid to fly by plane or just want to feel the romance of the railway.
1. Moscow – Riga, “Latvian Express”
Traveling from Moscow to Riga will take only one night. The Latvian Express departs from the Riga Station late in the evening and arrives at the Central Station in Riga in the morning. This is especially convenient if your ultimate goal is the Latvian coast of the Baltic Sea; You can change trains to Jurmala without leaving the station building. Train to the sea depart approximately every 30 minutes, tickets can be bought directly at the box office.
2. Moscow – Tallinn, Baltic Express
Tallinn is less in demand among Russian tourists than Riga, and in vain. Despite the fact that the city itself is quite small, its historical center is larger and older than in Riga. Between the capitals of Russia and Estonia runs the train “Baltic Express”. Travel time to Tallinn is only 14 hours, the train stops in St. Petersburg, Kingisepp and Narva. The Baltic Express leaves from Leningradsky Station in the evening, so you will be in Tallinn in the morning. And from Tallinn, if you wish, you can easily get to Riga (by bus) or to Helsinki (by ferry).
3. Moscow – Helsinki, the train “Leo Tolstoy”
The branded train “Leo Tolstoy” runs on the route Moscow – Helsinki since 1975. As part of this train, there are not only compartment and CB wagons familiar to everyone, but also business-class wagons and even a special car-wagon! But keep in mind that in order to transport your car to Finland you will have to reserve a place in advance and draw up a package of documents. The cost of transportation will depend on the class of the car. On the way, the train makes stops in several Finnish cities, St. Petersburg and Vyborg. Once you arrive at your destination, start exploring Helsinki directly from the station building, which is an outstanding monument of Finnish architecture.
4. Moscow – Warsaw, the Polonaise train
Today, tourists are just starting to discover Warsaw, so you can avoid the monstrous crowds. In addition to the old city, the museums of the Warsaw Uprising and the history of Polish Jews should become mandatory points in your program (the latter was recognized as the best museum of 2016 in Europe). You can get to Warsaw in less than a day by the Polonaise train, which began to run between Moscow and Warsaw back in 1973. Today, this route is alternately served by Russian Railways and PKP (Polish State Railways). The Russian train runs new modern cars (2-seater CB and 4-seater coupes) equipped with dry closets and a shower. The road passes through the territory of three states – Russia, Belarus and Poland. In Brest, you will find a long stop for changing wheels.
5. Moscow – Prague, the Vltava train
The well-preserved historical center, amazing architecture and relatively low prices make Prague one of the most popular European capitals. The great advantage of Prague over other tourist cities is that in winter it is no less beautiful than in summer. In addition, the Czech Republic is located very close to Russia, Moscow and Prague are separated by about 2,000 kilometers. This distance can be covered on the Vltava branded train in just 26 hours.
6. Moscow – Karlovy Vary, the Vltava train
If you decide to go to the Czech Republic by the Vltava train, why not take a little further than Prague to Karlovy Vary? The road will take you 4 hours longer, but all this time you will observe beautiful rivers, mountains, lakes and castles from the train window. And in Karlovy Vary itself there is something to see – from the famous drinking pump-rooms to historic hotels and restaurants. And from Karlovy Vary to Prague can be reached by train or by bus. Keep in mind that this is the rare case when a bus is not only cheaper, but also faster.