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Moscow to Urumqi

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Moscow to Urumqi

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By far the most popular route for travellers wishing to travel from mainland Europe into China and beyond is the Trans-Siberian Railway taking the appropriate route through Mongolia or the region once known as Manchuria. However, a less travelled but equally fascinating route is to travel from Moscow (Russia) to Urumqi (China) via Almaty (Kazakhstan). Because this journey is in no way as well documented as the Trans-Siberian equivalent, more research and preparation is required for a successful trip. However, the uncertainty attatched to the journey at times and the fact that certain levels of improvisation are required can give a far more rewarding travel experience.

A typical desert terrain view taken in Kazakhstan en route from Moscow to Almaty.
A view taken just outside Urumqi in North-west China en route from Almaty in Kazakhstan


It is vitally important to make sure all visa requirements are understood before travel. Obtaining visas at the last minute in countries other than that of your passport's origin can prove to be very difficult and not always possible. For this particular journey, it is likely a visa will be needed for Russia, Kazakhstan and China. (If travelling by rail to Moscow from Western Europe, it may be most convenient to travel through Belarus. In this case, an additional visa will be required.

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