High-speed trains in Russia – Guide

With a country as vast, diverse, and beautiful as Russia, it can be tough deciding what to see. Luckily, there are many high-speed trains that allow for easy access to all of the best places in Russia.

While Moscow and St. Petersburg are essential for a visitor’s first time, these high-speed train routes offer a truly immersive experience into the heart of Russia’s culture and heritage.

Splendour on the Sapsan

Novogireevo train station, ED4M local train to Moscow (Станция Новогиреево, электропоезд ЭД4М в Москву)

The Sapsan train is a high-speed train connecting Moscow and St. Petersburg. Traveling at an astonishing rate of 155mph, the Sapsan train takes less than four hours to travel from Moscow to St. Petersburg.

This allows locals and tourists the luxury of experiencing two vastly different cities without the burden of flying or long travel times. For tourists especially, the Sapsan is an ideal way of getting the most out of Russian travel.

Sapsan tickets can be conveniently booked online. The prices vary depending on how early they are purchased, if there is a festival, and on the class chosen. A typical economy class seat can be as cheap as $70, while a business class seat may go for as much as $230. For ensuring the best time in Russia, early booking is always advised.

The train itself provides a stylish and sleek experience. With a smooth track and very little disturbances, it can provide a place to rest or visit with friends. The chairs in economy are a pleasant blue, and they provide enough cushion to relieve the stress of the day. Business class provides an even more luxurious experience with tables, waiter services, and extra legroom. Those traveling with more than two people can even request a table in either economy or business class.

While Moscow and St. Petersburg are the most known destinations for tourists riding the Sapsan, there are extra stops along the way that can provide a perfect Russian travel experience.



One of the best stops along the Sapsan is Nizhny Novgorod. This delightful city is often overlooked by tourists, but it is truly the perfect addition to a holiday abroad. Nizhny Novgorod provides the urban sprawl of Moscow mixed with the European sensibilities found in St. Petersburg. As with all Russian cities, there are beautifully colored churches scattered evenly throughout.

All Aboard the Allegro!

Combining Finland and Russia is the high-speed Allegro. This Helsinki – St. Petersburg train allows locals and tourists the opportunity to explore two vastly different yet nearby countries.

The Allegro completes its journey in less than four hours, and it’s prices are perfect for travelers on any budget. While the majority of its stops are in Finland, the Allegro is a great way to see more while touring Russia’s vast geography.

The Allegro offers many benefits to its riders. This newly built train comes complete with plush seats, a restaurant, and even an area where children can peacefully play. There is also a server who will change currency to help make travel easier than ever before. While passports will be checked along the border, this process goes smoothly and without delay.

Riding Lastochka Into Russia’s Past

Er 797-41 steam train departing from Rizhsky Rail Terminal (Отправление состава, ведомого паровозом Эр 797-41 с Рижского Вокзала)

Lastochka is a recently developed train that travels from St. Petersburg to Bolgoye and Novgorod. While Bologoye may not provide much for visitors, it hosts an exceptionally large train station that connects to many of Russia’s main tracks.

One of the main treasures on the Lastochka route is Novgorod. Since the beginning of Russian history, Novgorod has stood a proud and vibrant city full of culture and life.

Visitors in Novgorod can enter the city’s Kremlin free of charge. Inside the Kremlin, tourists can see the spectacular St. Sophia Cathedral. Built with the famous Russian onion-domes, this white and golden church is remarkable and easily worth the trip alone.

Tourists can also step into Russia’s past with a visit to one of the many town museums, or by sightseeing all of the old churches and buildings that blend in beautifully with the new. With numerous wooden buildings, churches, and wonderful hand-crafted gifts, Novgorod is a worthwhile addition to any Russian travel itinerary.

With countless routes and the high-speeds to make them doable, visitors now have more access to Russia’s beauty than ever before. While many of these trains offer tickets at a low price, it is best to plan ahead in order to get the desired tickets. With Russian high-speed trains, it is now possible to see the largest country in the world without waiting!

Expert advice for this story is provided by our friends from Travel All Russia – world’s leading agency for tours to Russia.

(photo credit: 123)

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