I’m about to take the fast Allegro train to St. Petersburg, the starting point of my Trans-Siberian train journey.
Actually, I’m able to update this post a bit since we’ve got free WiFi on board! The train left on time, and since Helsinki is a bilingual city, I actually got a welcome and send-off in Swedish! Nice touch. (All train announcements are in Finnish, Russian, Swedish and English.)
The Allegro train seems very new, with comfy seats and lots of leg room in second class. I’m surrounded by Russians mainly, but I can hear a bit of Finnish and English as well. There’s a restaurant car five carriages down, which I’ll try later.
Well, even if I’m starting my Trans-Siberian train journey “properly” on Sunday when I get on the train in St. Petersburg, my eastward train journey is starting today. Also, when I reach Beijing 11th August – the official end of my Trans-Siberian journey – I’ll be taking another train to Shanghai (I’ve given up on Hong Kong; there just isn’t enough time). Which means I’ll be travelling from Helsinki to Shanghai by train. I know the St. Petersburg to Beijing train journey is 9,994 kilometres. How far the entire journey is, I’ll work out later.