Author Archives: Marcus Wong

Kiev or Kyiv – what to call the Ukrainian capital

During my 2012 trip to Europe the only reason I had for visiting Kiev was to visit Chernobyl, but I ended up loving the city so much I was sad to leave it so soon. But one thing I never […]

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Russian level crossings bite back!

As I travelled across Russia by train there was an interesting feature at every level crossing we passed through – massive steel plates that lifted out of the roadway, preventing cars from driving around the boom gates. Some level crossings […]

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How the TGV has shrunk France

Here is an interesting find – graphs comparing the reductions in travel time to cities across France, thanks to the introduction of the TGV (Train à Grande Vitesse) high-speed rail network. Photo by Didier Duforest, via Wikimedia Commons Travel times […]

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ОПЭ1 electro-diesel locomotives of the former USSR

An electro-diesel locomotive is a unit that can operate from either an external electric power source, or standalone with an onboard diesel engine, and on the railways of the former USSR is an interesting example – the ОПЭ1 and subsequent […]

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A whistle stop tour of Sinaia railway station, Romania

As I travelled across Romania by train, the railway station at the mountain resort of Sinaia in Prahova County caught my eye. Photo by Andrei Stroe, via Wikimedia Commons Căile Ferate Române 4-6-0 steam locomotive 230-039 was plinthed outside the […]

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German railfans exploring the world of rail

For many railfans their interest in railways ends at the border of their own country, with little interest in the trains found elsewhere in the world. But it seems that German railfans are an exception to this, being happy to […]

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Exploring the bizarre world of VDNKh

On the outskirts of Moscow is VDNKh – originally built by an exhibition centre to show off the achievements of the Soviet Union, by the time I visited in 2013 it was a bizarre mix of fairground meets flea market, set amongst a collection of Soviet architecture.

Pavilions 58 and 59 - 'Ukraine' and 'Moscow, Tula and Ryazan region' Continue reading

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A familiar looking face on the Ploiești Tramway

The tramways of Romania usually don’t get much attention from transport enthusiasts of the English-speaking world, but this Tatra KT4D tram in Ploiești, Romania did. Photo by Smiley.toerist via Wikimedia Commons Thanks to the colour scheme – a copy of […]

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Why was this barbecue on the tram tracks?

A few months ago I came across a photo on Twitter showing a barbecue along tram tracks, with a hotplate full of sausages sizzling away on top. So where was the photo taken, and what was the story behind it? […]

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Rubbing the dog’s nose for good luck

The stations of the Moscow Metro are known for their ornate architecture, but Площадь Революции (Ploshchad Revolyutsii) station on the Arbatsko-Pokrovskaya Line has another form of artwork to offer. A series of bronze sculptures. For some reason the dog sculpture […]

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