The Way Back is a 2010 movie that tells the story of a group of prisoners who escape from a Gulag in Siberia. It is based on the story of Sławomir Rawicz, although it’s not clear whether all the facts are true.
In The Way Back the prisoners reach China after passing by Lake Baikal and crossing the Gobi Desert in Mongolia. They continue their trip through the Himalayas to reach the capital of Tibet, Lhasa. This extraordinary itinerary ends with Darjeeling in India.
Quite an inspiration for adventurous holidays but don’t be fooled: The Way Back filming locations are actually mostly in Bulgaria and Morocco. Only the scenes in India were actually shot in India. So no Lake Baikal or Gobi Desert but that’s just one more reason to go check these destinations by yourself!
1. Gulag (Prison) In Siberia, Russia
Nu Boyana Film Studios, Sofia, Bulgaria
2. Lake Baikal, Siberia, Russia
After walking through the snows of Siberia, the group of escaped prisoners reaches Lake Baikal.
These scenes were apparently shot in Vakarel (Bulgaria) with the Lake Baikal digitally added.
3. Gobi Desert, Mongolia
Erfoud & Ouarzazate (Morocco)
4. Great Wall of China
Sofia & Vakarel (Bulgaria)
Like Lake Baikal, the Great Wall was digitally added to the movie scenes.
5. Lhasa, Tibet
Sofia & Vakarel (Bulgaria), Darjeeling (India)
6. Darjeeling, India
It is the only “real” filming location of the movie since the scenes in Darjeeling with the tea fields were actually shot there.