So close and yet so unkown
Until little over 25 years ago Eastern Europe started right there in the middle of nowadays Germany. The occidental part of Berlin was the last piece of Western Europe. Then the Wall fell, the Soviet Union dissolved and we came to “discover” that Europe stretches all the way to the Urals. Yekaterinburg, the first Russian city on the Asian side, is 3000Km to the East of the famous Check Point Charlie, while the Atlantic, to the West, is a “mere” 1500Km away.
Most of that “unknown Europe” was then under the flag of the USSR, or its sphere of influence. A immense block of mystery to the eyes of a westerner. In fact, now that, for example, Poland has joined the European Union and has become more “one of us”, we Europeans from the West still know very little of lies east of Brest fortress and its gigantic concrete soldiers.
At Iron Curtain Tours, we propose ourselves taking you NA VOSTOK (to the East), to start discovering all that immense land mass that lies beyond of where once the Iron Curtain invisibly stood tall.
All the way to Eastern Europe.
Greatest adventures are by train
Train travel was the first really comfortable way to cover big distances by land. Although its better days are behind us, mostly because airplanes now connect even the most remote places on hearth, train travel is yet to deliver its swan song. The pleasure to “steam” across the landscape, cutting through villages and towns, meeting the locals and arriving right in the heart of the city is something not possible when travelling by plane
What we, at Iron Curtain Tours, propose is to revive train journeys as a form of immersive tourism. From the “traditional” (as traditional as taking a 9300Km ride across a quarter of the globe and 7 time zones can get) Trans-Siberian to smaller rides across Central and Eastern Europe.
All our packages are fully customizable. This inlcudes the Adventure line, that can range from third class sleeping cars to a mixture of luxury class with top level hotels.
Feel free to contact us for your own personalized journey
Tell us when and where you«ll need to be and we’ll propose you a range of solutions available for your flights
May you just need to be picked up at the airport, travel halfway accross the country or just have a ride for our meeting
Keeping a close relation with hotels in differente ranges allows us to meet your requirements with the necessary comfort
We’ll provide the proper setting for your meeting, from a simple round table to confenrence room
We have the most interesting restaurants as our partners either for a quiet business lunch or a relaxing dinner
Foreign countries often come with foreign languages, we’ll guarantee you and your business partners understand each other
As a travel agency our job is to prepare the ultimate vacation for you, so that with just the necessary details from your side we can use our contacts and expertise to provide you with a comfortable and feasible package.
As a professional of the hospitality business once put it:
“It is surprisingly difficult to plan some types of vacations, and the travel agent is a time saver in this respect. Could you research and book it all? Yes, you could. But at what cost to your time working in an area that is very likely not your core competency? Travel agents are skilled salespeople who also use many of the products they sell, and in addition they are usually people who have been there and done that, quite literally. This leads to a degree of familiarity that you cannot achieve from Googling alone. You are paying for that experience. You are paying for the notion of expert on the ground knowledge. Has every agent been everywhere and done everything? No, of course not. But if you have a bias toward a certain part of the world, you may want to find a subject expert to do your travel planning for you.”
“In the end, the agents of the next generation will be destination or regional specialists, and the marketplace may reach the point where you talk to two different people for trips to Europe and Asia, or you may have an agent that deals exclusively in one or two given verticals of worldwide tourism.”
What we do
Iron Curtain Tours has a client oriented approach to the travel business: you don’t take the tour that we propose, we organise the tour that you wish.
It’s not about what we can provide, it’s all about what you need. This is the reason why you will find very few packages prêt à porter on our website: the package suiting one traveler is not the best one for the next one.
Although it would surely be a very nice life, a travel agent does not spend all year round visiting the places he or she promotes. This being said, we take travelling very serious. This is why we, at Iron Curtain Tours, keep a close bond with our partners “on the ground”, all to better serve you.
Why we do it
It was in 2016 that I decided to go on a train tour beyond the Iron Curtain. My journey had me flying into Chisinau and start from there.
For the next 11 days trains would take me from Chisinau to Tiraspol, Odessa, Kyiv, Kovel, Brest and Minsk, from where I flew back home.
During this journey I came to discover that Europe is much more vaired than that we, in the West, think. But with all that diversity there are still undeniable similatiries among us all, this is what makes us a community.
The final stage of my trip was Belarus. I must admit, without minimizing the other places I went through, that it was my favourite one. I liked it so much that in 2017 I went there to celebrate my 40th birthday, in June. Then I went again, and again… a total of 5 times up to now .
At every visit my wish to bring others to that lost territory, to all the vast unknown that was once hidden by the Iron Curtain, grew stronger. Meanwhile I alse visited Russia twice (Kaliningrad and Moscow). Just made my will to do something stronger. So I decide to let the dream gain wings and fly, and I decided to invest myself into it.
Today, August 10th, 2018, the dream beecame real: Iron Curtain Tours OÜ, based in Estonia, owned by a Portuguese restless soul living in Luxembourg, saw the daylight.
Will be a pleasure to share this travel passion with you.