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About Us

What you say about us

Alanna, Ralph and Nathan August 2014


We are freshly returned from our fantastic Trans-Siberian adventure. We would very much like to say a massive 'thank you'.

We have had an amazing time. Everything was so well organised, we always felt looked after without feeling stifled or rushed about as you might on a fully managed/guided tour. We had plenty of time to do our own thing and the trips were always in very small groups (if not only the three of us!). The local guides at each location were fantastic. All really helpful and knowledgeable and ready to do that little bit extra (special thanks to the amazing Ulziimaa in Ulaanbataar!). As you may have guessed at an early stage I can be a bit of a nervous traveller but you reassured us at every step and everything was so well planned and organised, we really had nothing to worry about at all. I appreciate hugely the fact that every email and question I had was responded to and answered within minutes/hours, even when we were in China. I will (and already have done) unreservedly recommend you and your company to anyone considering travelling through Russia, Mongolia and China. 


A truly amazing experience...thank you.


There was only one small negative thing I would like to draw to your attention. This is not a criticism of you or the company, just feedback for your future information with regard to the hotel in Xi'an (the HNA Business Hotel). It was in no way a 3 star hotel. It was so dirty. I am not bothered about 'basic' as long as it is clean. This hotel was not (I do have pictures, if you would like me to send them, please let me know). Our room was a twin room (should have been a triple). We did not realise this until our (excellent) guide for the Terracotta Warriors trip came to reception to ask for us why they were trying to charge us for breakfast. It turns out they gave us a '2-person' room and believed we were therefore only entitled to two breakfasts. My partner and I had been sharing a single bed! The guide (Kimi) spoke to various representatives of the hotel who apologised, said it was their fault and that we should contact you (our agent) on return to the UK for you to get a refund from the hotel for the stay We are not hugely bothered about the refund etc but wanted to let you know so that you could look into different hotels in Xi'an for future travellers. This was however, a small inconvenience that only stood out because the rest of the experience was so wonderful. Rest assured it didn't detract from our amazing trip, it was 10 out of 10 all the way! We loved it.

Thank you so much.

Alanna, Ralph and Nathan 



Jessica & Nanae Warren-Hart  July 2014

Dear Jo,
A long overdue email to you.
My girls had a really tremendous trip.
All down to you for incredible planning, great flexibility and astonishing action at short notice.
This trip went from dream to execution in the space of 3 weeks.
Your support in collecting Visas as the girls passports became available for days and hours was second to none.
I have a forensic attitude towards service and product delivery and I rate you amongst the best I’ve encountered.
It is without reservation that I recommend your product – you being an intrinsic part of it.

Kind regards,
Lynda Warren


Dermot Carlin  February 2014

Hello Jo,
It suddenly dawned on me that i have not thanked for all the help you gave Jodie whilst i was in hospital, so thanks very much I heard you went above and beyond giving Jodie advice unlike our travel insurance who were useless and gave bad advice.
We are now in Mcleod Ganj in India just down the road from the Dalai Lama !!
All the best,
Kind regards,
Dermot Carlin.


Carols Ossenbach Sauter October 2013

Hello Odette,
Just a short note to tell you that our trip went beautifully. The organization was perfect; guides, hotels, etc. were all as expected. All in all a great experience.  
We are currently in Sydney, about to complete our journey around the world.
Thanks for all your troubles and for a wonderful experience.
Best regards, 
Carlos Ossenbach Sauter


Karen & Jacques Grive  September 2013

Hello Odette
My husband and I got back from our trans-Sib trip this week after a wonderful month away. There wasn't a single hitch thanks to your organisation and we threw ourselves whole-heartedly into integrating with the 'natives'. A totally memorable experience and lots of new friends gathered on the way.
Our warmest thanks,
Karen Grivel 



Gerhard and Natalia Aschmutat August 2013

Hello Odette,

Back home since two week now and daily routine is back.
Want to thank you for the excellent organization of our Trans-Sib tour from Moscow to Beijing. Hotels, the tour guides pick up at train stations etc. were all to our fully satisfaction and the days will be remembered with great pleasure.
 We continued from Beijing to Xi’an to see the Qin Mausoleum and the Terra Cotta soldiers, absolutely fabulous. Xi’an with the biggest intact City Wall in China (we did the entire wall with a rented bike) clock tower and the Grand Opera House with an unforgettable chin. Dance and music presentation while enjoying a fantastic Dumpling Banquet, made our stay unforgettable.
Guangzhou, Yiangiang and Hong Kong were the final stations of our trip before flying home.
Thanks again and be sure that I'll highly recommend your organization.
Warmesr regards from,
Gerhard and Natalia Aschmutat.



Gordon Fong     July 2013

Dear Odette
In general the arrangement was satisfactory.  The choice of hotels was very good and convenient.  There were a few small glitches but on a 2-week trip such things do happen.  Like we ordered dinner in the dining car before reaching Ulaan Batar, which subsequently got separated from the main train but with us ushered back to the main train already due to immigration check.  We were afraid to go back to the separated dining car, fearful that the main train would leave without us.  Of course we could not communicate with the train people in English!  I also got pickpocketed in St Petersburg – quite a mess but got through it.  
The trip was fun and educational.  Of course the brochures and past travellers tell you about the romance of such a journey but they don’t tell you about the hardship part – we went without shower for 4 days, quite a record for us.  All the local guides were fantastic.  The ballet was most enjoyable.
Thanks for taking care of everything.


Dr A Kumar September 2013

I am now at the end of my incredible trip, travelling in two continents, traversing 8 or 9 time zones on land, meeting different races, various cultures and many incomprehensible tongues and scripts. It has been a wonderful experience and education. Trip has been very well organised. I must admit I was a bit apprehensive at the start of my journey but as I went on, I became more confident. Tomorrow, I take 7.30 am train to Beijing. There are two girls from UK travelling to Beijing in the same train who will be staying in same Paragon Hotel as me. We will be walking together to the hotel. 
Now when people stop me in market place in Gt. Yarmouth and ask me if I had done this trip or not, I know what answer to give. They all know about this trip. In 2007 when I retired, I told the reporter of Eastern Daily Press who came to interview me. As you pointed out, this trip is difficult, not many people do it. At my age of 71yrs. I have managed to do it, for which I feel very proud, physically in excellent shape to undertake the stress and strain of 9500 km train journey.
Best wishes from Ulan Bataar.  
Dr. A. Kumar



Katie Boyce July 2013

Hello Odette,
I just wanted to let you know, that we recently returned from our Trans-Siberian adventure, and had a blast! :) Everything was awesome.
Thank you so much for all of your help!
Katie Boyce


Germain and Elena June 2013

Hello Odette and Joanne,

Just wanted to drop a note to say Thank You very much for ensuring our trip was well planned and all logistics were superbly well taken care of.
Elena and I really enjoyed ourselves on our trip, and everything went smoothly as planned. The accommodations were lovely, home stays were very personal and warm, and not to mention the various guides we had along the way who were very knowledgeable and friendly. Even the drivers who came to pick us at each train station never failed to turn up on time (except one, who was actually waiting outside the platform exit!) I enjoyed the entire 1-month-long trip and have a lifetime of memories to take away with me... in fact, I have trouble picking a favourite stop along the way! :)


“I love that all the fine details like the city guides and trip info booklet provided and prepared us for. I'd never have been able to get the same deal (or great experience!) if I had booked the trip on my own.... thank you for saving me all that headache on logistics, seriously!

Thanks again and keep up the marvelous work!
I wouldn't hesitate to recommend anyone interested in the trip your way.


Tanya and Julian April 2013

Hello Odette,
Everything was Ok with the tour of Chinese Wall, thanks for the effort for early tour.
We would like also to thank you for well organized Trans Siberian Tour, we have very good moments and funny situation.
For your information we are very satisfy by your agent in Mongolia and the personal tour guide. In each of the tour everything was on time strictly following the programme.
All the best for you and a lot of success for your company,
Tanya and Julian
Bulgarian group


Christopher Easley  December 2012

I just wanted to drop you a line and say thank you for all of your help in making our Trans-siberian railway journey a reality.  The patience exhibited when we made our bookings, the attention to detail you displayed in switching the dates of our dog sled outing and the care you demonstrated when I missed the car service made me realize that choosing your tour company was the best decision I had made regarding this trip. 

Several people have asked about my trip, and a few are actually interested in following in our footsteps.  I have recommended your company to them all.  

Many thanks,
Christopher Easley  


Gordon Davidson and Penny Russell  September 2012

First of all, apologies for the time it has taken for me to get around to writing this email.
I just want to say how much we enjoyed the whole holiday - it more than met expectations. I want to thank you in particular Odette and all of your colleagues for the time and effort that was put in to the arrangements on our behalf. You did your company proud as everything went according to plan.
I don't know whether it is possible for you to pass on our thanks and respects to everyone in Russia who helped make the holiday so fantastic - from Vladivostok, via Irkutsk & Lake Baikal, then Ekaterinburg, on to Moscow. We met some lovely, genuine people. If we ever decide to go back, I'll be in contact!
Gordon Davidson and Penny Russell



Lisa McDowell    August 2012


Hi Joanne,

Hope all is well with you.  I am back from my fabulous trip and back to work, so a bit of a shock to the system!  Thanks so much for all your help in arranging everything for me, as it made a huge difference.  Your local contacts were great and really added to the experience.  I didn’t receive the same level of customer service from some of the places I had booked myself!  Denis in Ulan Ude and Lena in Irkutsk were just gems!

Have been raving about my trip to everyone, so will send them in your direction if I manage to tempt anyone to go.

All the best and thanks so much again.

Kind regards,
Lisa McDowell


Mike Adams June 2012

Hello Odette

I've been meaning to write for some time, firstly to say just how much we enjoyed the trip, it was absolutely marvellous! All the guides who had been selected for us - in St Petersburg, Moscow, Lake Baikal and Mongolia were really great at making us feel welcome and at home. Two in particular stand out in my memory: Genna, who took us on our Lake Baikal trek, became a great friend at once. By the second day I was calling him "moi druk". And then Togi, in Ulan Bataar, was so good at making us feel welcome, especially when we arrived in the city and told him we wanted to check into a hotel and hence go off schedule for two days! He immediately set about organising it for us, and later that day took me out on a five hour tour of the city. Please, if you can, pass on to the local tour company how much we appreciated everything he did for us. He was so good at looking after us, and at sharing with us his knowledge of the country, he seemed to me to be like an ambassador for Mongolia. That boy will go far!

Odette, in all a brilliantly organised and wonderful holiday!


Melissa Fedak   May 2012

Joanne and Odette,
Just wanted to say a big Thank You!  Our Super Trans-Siberian trip in May was smooth and hassle-free, everything just as on the itinerary.  It was an amazingly consistent and organized experience across three countries.  Needless to say, we had a wonderful time!  Every excursion was fun and unique, it's hard to pick a favorite.  The hike near Lake Baikal was chilly, but delightful, and the Tea With a Russian Family was a hella fun time.  The celebration at the Europe-Asia border was an unexpected treat as well.  Our guides in every city were fantastic - conscientious, welcoming, and knowledgeable.  I have not a single complaint. 
You guys have this down!


Thanks again for all your help with the details!
Melissa Fedak


Sarah Faraidooni March 2012

I just wanted to thank you for arranging such a wonderful and memorable trip! The logistics were perfect and very well - organized.

We enjoyed ourselves so much and were satisfied with the choice of hotels, tour guides and trains.

We learned so much from our friendly guides in Moscow, Yekaterinburg, Irkutsk and Mongolia which definetely calls for another visit to explore the diverse and rich cultures of Russia and Mongolia.

The trains were exactly on schedule, safe, and clean. Guides were always on time and clear on instructions.
We appreciated your promptness in helping us apply for visas to Russia and Mongolia. The travel companies sent us original instructions within two days.

Wishing you all the best .


Sarah Faraidooni, Dubai, U.A.E


Jenny and Peter Aldous September 2011

Just an email to tell you how much we enjoyed our trans siberian holiday.

Right from the start your company (The Russia Experience) and staff were very helpful, it didn't matter how many times we phoned with questions you were always helpful and friendly. If anyone is thinking of doing this trans-siberiian trip I would recommend they travel with your company.

Everything went like clockwork, we were met at each stop as promised and the guides were always helpful and friendly. But never obtrusive letting us do our own things also .

After we were met at Ulambaatar our guide threw in a couple of extras with a visit to the Gengis Kaahn monument and a stop with some eagles en-route.

Our trip was great,( we don't call it a holiday , its much more than that ) we are still coming down from it really we done so much in three weeks, on the train all the way through to China from Russia with stops in Moscow, Irkutsk, Ulambaatar in Mongolia and Bejing, it was an absolutely awsome experience and we wouldnt have missed it for the world.

The highlights for us were the stay beside Lake Baikal , our guide met us the morning after our arrival and took us on a hike to the lakeshore where he produced wine, salad ,chunky bread and proceeded to build a fire and cook us fresh fish for lunch , that was a perfect day! then the stay in the ger camp on the mongolian plains, it was so magiclal and the stars so bright because there was no pollution, and the great wall of China, all trips arranged by your company and couldnt be faulted !

I cannot say enough about how wonderful everything was , its definately going to be our number one trip and I think we would be hard pushed to top it.

Your book supplied with our inital booking was such a help, and gave information in amusing way , warts and all, nothing was glossed over and we were left in no doubt that this trip would not always be five star , In such things which were beyond your control , such as the toilets on the trains not always being clean.. Once you know what to expect ,these things are not so bad after all. ! All the hotels you supplied were of a very good standard with no complaints from us.

I really could go on and on but don't want to bore anyone after all most anecdotes are only funny if you were there !

I just want to re-iterate that this trip was amazing, and anyone considering it could do no better than travelling with your company.

Best regards and thank you so much,

Jenny and Peter Aldous.

One small warning to would be trippers, (nothing to do with your company) Do not use the boys on the bikes in Bejing who tow a two seater cart for you to ride in, get a taxi, its cheaper and much much safer !

Three people were ripped off by these boys innjust the short time we were there ! They agree a price and then when you arrive at your destination they demand more money with menances ! and even more worryingly some perople were taken down the narrow reads they live in where cars cannot go so you are surrounded by them and they only let you go after you give them all your money ! Be warned !!


Duncan Bell September 2011


Just a note to say that I got back to the UK the day before yesterday, after a really great trip. All the arrangements worked perfectly, and the guides were excellent. A particular thank you must go to Nasaa, of Shuren Travel in Mongolia, as she was with me for 6 days in Mongolia. The nomad camp experience was great fun, although I was pleased to get to the Elstei Ger Lodge after 3 days at the nomad camp without electricity and running water!! I was also well lokoked after by Diana in Moscow, of Marlis, and by Maria and Constantin in Ekaterinburg, by Lena in Irkutsk / Lystvyanka, and by Alisa in Ulan Ude.

I am pleased to say that, throughout Russia and Mongolia, I was always met as planned at the stations. I was lucky on the Moscow - Ekaterinburg and Elkaterinburg - Irkutsk legs, in that, although travelling 2nd class in 4 berth compartments, there was only one other person in my compartment in each case. The trains were generally comfortable, although the sleeping car on the Irkutsk - Ulan Ude leg was far too hot, being heated to 38 degrees C. I think the Russians like it that way!! given that this was only a 12 hour journey, it would have been nice to do it by day.

One minor point concerns the arrangements for meeting me at Beijing. The instructions said that I should go to the end of the platform to meet my driver. But Beijing station was actually a through station, so there was no actual "end" to the platform. (Actually, of course, there were 2 ends, but neither end is suitable for meeting). I wandered up and down for a while, and may have missed the driver, who was also wandering up and down the platform. There were large crowds, due to the Chinese national holiday starting that day. Eventually, I made for the station exit, and waited around just outside the station for 15 minutes, and eventually bumped into the driver, so all was well. I suggest that, in future, you instruct passengers to leave the platform by the main underground exit in the centre of the platform, turn left at the bottom of the ramp, and make for the exit. As the exit ramp begins to rise, but before the actual exit, there is a small tourist office in the middle of the ramp, and this would be a suitable and more precise meeting point. The directions given would apply whichever arrival platform the train from Ulan Bataar used.

The hotels were fine, as was the Ulan Ude home stay.

All in all, I very much enjoyed my trip. Thanks for organising things.


Duncan Bell


Bernadette & Joseph Skinner September 2011

We have been back home for nearly a month and I have neglected in thanking your company for such a well organised, interesting journey(Super Trans Mongolian) Charming personal guides who gave us a real feeling for their homelands. The most memorable days were at Elstei Ger and a day in the country with Constantine at Ekaterinburg. Both sister companies in these parts of the trip were excellent and I would be grateful if you could extend our thanks.


Brian Marchant & Brian Quance September 2011


I think that you should know that I have reached that time in life where I am not happy unless I can complain about something. Being a miserable old git gives me great pleasure. So let us start with the trip you arranged for the two Brians.

First - Hotels.

All excellent and situated conveniently close to the city centres and the main attractions. Staff very helpful even to the extent of supplying breakfast boxes on those mornings we left early.

City Walks.

These added a whole new dimension to the tours as the guides were first rate and very well informed. We also found that they were happy to talk of present and past regimes which served to add colour to the situation and they were also well versed in the local customs. Without the guides the experience would not have been quite so rewarding.


Not to be missed. Picnic at Lake Baikal and the trip to the Great Wall. Excellent guides and very well organised .

As promised we were always met as arranged . The drivers went out of their way to ensure that we were on time for our trains and they also made sure that we were safely on board before leaving. We were also lucky in meeting three others on the "experience" in Moscow who we were with until Beijing and so we had others to turn to when we were confused. ( Often at my age )

All in all it was a fantastic experience and one that I would not have wanted to miss at any cost. You have made two old men very happy.

My one and only complaint about the trip is that I have absolutely nothing about which to complain.

My thanks to you and all involved.


Amanda Moran & Duncan Balderson August 2011

Dear Joanne,

We have arrived safely in Beijing and would just like to say a massive thank you for organising our Moscow to Beijing trip for us! Everything was on time and excellent! We were met at every station and the guides / helpers we had were fantastic!

We thoroughly enjoyed the hike round Lake Baikal (although the distances were a lot further than in the itinerary!!!!), and the walking guide Anton was both knowledgeable and chilled out, a great balance!

Mongolia was also an excellent experience, with the family stay being the highlight! Our guide Naki had endless information and was forever cheerful! A big thank you to him too!

The whole experience for us both was a very positive one and we will be sure to recommend your company to family and friends!!
Once again, thank you to all the drivers, guides and yourself for an excellent service!

Amanda and Duncan

Did you know

The word “Kremlin” isn’t Russian – it’s from a medieval Tartar word meaning “fortress”.  There used to be kremlins all over Russia in the days when the Mongols were a threat.  There’s even one in Siberia, at Tobolsk.

Association of Independent Tour Operators  Travel Trust Association