Want to discover the world in the most breathtaking way possible? Forget flying or driving, and hop on a train! Train travel is not just a mode of transportation, it’s an experience that reveals the world’s most amazing landscapes and cultural treasures. From the iconic Trans-Siberian Express to the charming Glacier Express in Switzerland, there are countless train routes that offer unforgettable sights and sensations. In this blog post, we’ll take you on a journey through the world’s most scenic train routes and destinations, and show you how train travel can transform your perspective on the world. So buckle up, sit back, and let’s ride the rails together to witness the beauty of our planet!
European Train Routes:
Exploring the Alps and Beyond:
Europe is home to some of the most picturesque train routes in the world, particularly through the majestic Alps. The Glacier Express in Switzerland is a must-do route, connecting Zermatt and St. Moritz while providing stunning views of snow-capped mountains, deep valleys, and winding rivers. It takes about eight hours to complete this route, and with its panoramic windows, it’s easy to soak in the stunning landscapes.
The Flam Railway in Norway is another famous route that takes passengers through the most beautiful landscapes of the Aurlandsfjord and the Sognefjord. The 20-kilometer-long route is studded with tunnels, bridges, and waterfalls, providing passengers with a memorable journey that they will never forget.
The Bernina Express in Italy is another incredible route that takes passengers through some of the steepest and most beautiful parts of the Swiss and Italian Alps. It connects the north of Italy with the south of Switzerland, and it’s often said that it is one of the most impressive train routes in Europe. The highlight of this route is the 7,000-foot Bernina Pass that offers stunning views of glaciers, alpine forests, and beautiful lakes.
Benefits of Train Travel in Europe:
Train travel in Europe is a cost-effective and environmentally-friendly way to explore different countries. Europe has a well-connected rail network, and train travel is usually the fastest and most convenient way to get around. From rural countryside to bustling cities, trains can take passengers to some of the most beautiful destinations in Europe. With a Eurail pass, passengers can travel between multiple countries with one ticket, making it easy to plan a trip across Europe.
Tips for Train Travel in Europe:
When planning a trip to Europe, it’s essential to book train tickets in advance. This is particularly important during peak tourist seasons when demand for train tickets is high. It’s also essential to be aware of the differences between first and second-class travel. First-class travel may seem more expensive, but the seats are more comfortable and come with additional amenities, such as food and drink.
When traveling on a train, it’s essential to keep valuables close to hand and to secure luggage in the designated racks. It’s also important to be aware of train schedules and connections, as trains in Europe are often punctual and connecting trains may leave promptly.
Train travel in Europe is a unique way to explore the beautiful landscapes, stunning architecture, and historic cities of Europe. With well-connected train lines and a range of passes available, it’s easy to plan a trip that takes passengers through the most scenic and historic regions of the continent. From the impressive Alps to the rolling English countryside, European train routes offer an experience that’s truly unforgettable.
American Train Routes:
From Coast to Coast:
The United States has an extensive network of train routes and there are some journeys that offer breathtaking views, making them some of the most scenic train routes in North America. From crossing the Rocky Mountains to winding along the Pacific Coast, these train journeys have so much to offer.
1. California Zephyr:
The California Zephyr is a train journey that takes you from Chicago to San Francisco, passing through some of the most beautiful landscapes in the United States. The train takes you through the Rocky Mountains and the Sierra Nevada Mountains, offering incredible views of snow-capped mountains and vast landscapes. The journey lasts 52 hours, and passes through seven states, including Colorado, Utah, and California. The best time to take this journey is in the autumn when the leaves on the trees are changing, and the scenery is even more beautiful.
2. Coast Starlight:
The Coast Starlight is a train journey that takes you from Seattle to Los Angeles, winding along the Pacific Coastline. The journey offers incredible views of California’s golden beaches, the Cascade Mountains, and the Oregon forests. The train stops at several destinations, including Santa Barbara and Portland, where passengers can explore the local attractions. The journey takes approximately 35 hours and is one of the most sought-after train journeys in the United States.
Benefits of Taking the Scenic Train Routes:
– More comfortable than other modes of transportation: Train journeys offer more space and comfort compared to air and road travel. Passengers can walk around, stretch their legs and enjoy the scenery while on board.
– Environmentally friendly: Train journeys produce less carbon emissions compared to other modes of transportation, making them an eco-friendly option.
– Convenient: Train journeys often offer several amenities, such as restaurants and bathrooms, making it a convenient option for long travels.
Tips for Taking Scenic Train Journeys:
– Plan your journey ahead: Scenic train journeys are usually popular and tickets sell out quickly. Plan your journey ahead to ensure you secure a ticket.
– Pack accordingly: Scenic train journeys can last for several hours or days. Pack accordingly, ensuring that you have all the necessary items for a comfortable and enjoyable trip.
– Be prepared for delays: Train journeys are known for experiencing delays. Ensure that you have enough time in your itinerary to accommodate any unforeseen delays.
Train journeys offer a unique and comfortable way of exploring the beautiful landscape of North America. From the stunning views of the Rocky Mountains to the golden beaches of California, there is so much to experience. By following the tips outlined and planning ahead, passengers can enjoy a stress-free journey, taking in all the beautiful scenery.
Asian Train Routes:
Asia offers some of the most stunning train journeys in the world. Here are some of the top train routes to explore:
a. Trans-Siberian Railway, Russia:
Spanning over 9,000 km across Russia, the Trans-Siberian Railway is a dream journey for many travelers. It snakes through dense forests, past remote towns, and over majestic mountains. The route covers stunning landscapes like Lake Baikal, the largest freshwater lake in the world. The journey takes a week-long, offering passengers ample time to take in the stunning scenery.
b. Eastern & Oriental Express, Singapore to Bangkok:
This luxurious train journey takes passengers through beautiful landscapes, diverse cultures, and stunning scenery. With elegant decor, exceptional service, and gourmet cuisine, the Eastern & Oriental Express is a charming way to experience Southeast Asia. The two-night journey offers a glimpse of Malaysia, Singapore, and Thailand, showcasing the region’s beautiful landscapes and rich culture.
c. Palace on Wheels, India:
India’s Palace on Wheels takes passengers through Rajasthan aboard a luxury train, offering a glimpse of the region’s royal past. The journey covers popular tourist spots like Jaipur, Jaisalmer, and Udaipur, as well as several lesser-known gems that showcase the rich culture and history of the region. Guests can enjoy gourmet cuisine, spa services, and cultural performances on this seven-night journey.
Discovering the Orient Express:
The iconic Orient Express is synonymous with luxury train travel, and its Asian routes are no less impressive. These journeys are noteworthy for their exceptional service, regal decor, and gourmet cuisine.
a. Venice Simplon-Orient-Express, Singapore to Bangkok:
This luxurious journey transports passengers between two of Southeast Asia’s most iconic cities, offering a glimpse of their beautiful landscapes and rich culture. The three-night journey offers unparalleled service, gourmet cuisine, and elegant decor, making it a dream journey for history buffs and luxury travelers alike.
b. Eastern & Oriental Express, Singapore to Kuala Lumpur and Bangkok:
The Eastern & Oriental Express offers another stunning journey from Singapore to Bangkok, this time stopping at Kuala Lumpur en route. With blue-tinted windows that showcase stunning views, the train travels through lush forests, past cascading waterfalls, and through historic towns. The journey offers onboard dining and entertainment, as well as guided tours of local attractions.
Asia offers some of the most scenic train routes in the world. From the Trans-Siberian Railway to the Eastern & Oriental Express and the Palace on Wheels, these journeys showcase the region’s beautiful landscapes, diverse cultures, and rich history. And with luxury trains like the Orient Express and Eastern & Oriental Express, these journeys are as much about the experience as they are about the destination.
Australasian Train Routes:
Riding the Rails Down Under is an exquisite way to explore the breathtaking landscapes of Australia and New Zealand. Here are some of the most scenic train routes that every train enthusiast must experience:
1. The Ghan: Running from Adelaide to Darwin, the Ghan is one of the most iconic train journeys in Australia. This 2,979 km journey takes you through the heart of the Outback, showcasing stunning natural wonders and diverse flora and fauna. The Ghan offers three classes of travel, including Platinum, Gold Service, and Red Service.
2. The Indian Pacific: Another famous train journey in Australia is the Indian Pacific, which runs from Sydney to Perth, covering a distance of 4,352 km. This epic journey takes you across the Nullarbor Plain, the longest stretch of straight railway track in the world, and presents spectacular views of the Australian Outback.
3. The TranzAlpine: The TranzAlpine train journey is a heavenly experience for those who want to explore the natural beauty of New Zealand’s South Island. This train journey runs between Christchurch and Greymouth, crossing the Southern Alps, Arthur’s Pass National Park, and the picturesque Waimakariri River valley.
Benefits of Riding the Train in Australasia:
1. Spectacular Scenery: One of the biggest advantages of taking a train journey in Australasia is the stunning scenery you get to witness along the way. From the vast red deserts to the snow-capped mountains, every moment on the train is a feast for the eyes.
2. Comfortable Travel: Train rides in Australasia offer different classes of service, so you can choose the level of comfort that suits you. Whether you want to travel in luxury or on a budget, there’s a class for everyone.
3. Cultural Experience: Riding the train in Australasia also provides an opportunity to learn about the unique culture and history of the different regions. The train stations are often located in remote towns, which showcases the way of life of the indigenous people and their customs.
Tips for Riding the Train in Australasia:
1. Book Your Ticket in Advance: Train journeys in Australasia can get booked up quickly, especially during peak season. It’s important to plan your trip in advance and book your ticket early to avoid disappointment.
2. Pack Light: Most train cabins have limited space, so it’s advisable to pack only the essentials and travel light. You can always store your luggage in a storage compartment on the train.
3. Bring Snacks: Although there are dining services available on most trains, it’s always wise to bring some snacks and water along with you for the journey.
Riding the rails down under is a unique and unforgettable way to explore the natural beauty and diversity of Australia and New Zealand. A train journey in Australasia is a must-do for any avid traveler looking for a one-of-a-kind experience.
Luxury Train Journeys:
Taking the Train in Style:
Traveling by train can be a luxurious and indulgent experience, and these luxurious train journeys are the epitome of opulence on tracks. Here are some of the most magnificent train journeys in the world:
1. Venice Simplon-Orient-Express:
The Venice Simplon-Orient-Express is a journey back in time, taking travelers through breathtaking landscapes and cities between Venice and Paris. The train is a classic masterpiece with art deco interior designs, personalized cabin steward services, and gourmet cuisine, making it one of the most luxurious train journeys in the world.
2. Royal Scotsman:
If you want to explore the scenic beauty of Scotland while traveling in style, then the Royal Scotsman should be on your bucket list. This train offers an extraordinary five-star experience with its bespoke cabins, fine dining, and traditional Highland entertainment.
3. Rovos Rail:
Rovos Rail in South Africa offers an unforgettable experience of stunning landscapes, wildlife, and elegant train travel. The train offers a range of luxurious suites, fine dining, and personal service, along with excursions to explore the rich cultural history of South Africa.
Benefits of Luxury Train Journeys:
Luxury train journeys offer a whole host of benefits, including:
Luxury train journeys offer comfortable suites with en-suite bathrooms, air conditioning, and luxurious bedding.
The dining experience is top-notch with the finest gourmet cuisine, afternoon teas, and champagne.
Luxury train journeys feature personalized service, with a cabin steward catering to your every need.
Luxury train journeys often traverse some of the most scenic routes in the world, allowing travelers to enjoy breathtaking views in comfortable surroundings.
Tips for Luxury Train Journeys:
Here are some useful tips to get the most out of your luxury train journey:
1. Pack smartly:
Pack lightly and smartly, keeping in mind the luggage restrictions of the trip.
2. Dress appropriately:
Dress for the occasion, as most luxury train journeys have dress codes for dinner.
3. Plan ahead:
Plan ahead and book well in advance, especially during peak season, to ensure you get the best cabin and itinerary.
4. Relax and enjoy:
The whole point of a luxury train journey is to relax and enjoy the experience, so sit back, sip on champagne, and let the beauty of the train journey soak in.
Luxury train journeys offer a unique and unforgettable way to discover the world in style. The opulence, comfort, and breathtaking views are worth the investment for those seeking an unforgettable travel experience.
Planning Your Dream Trip:
Booking Train Tickets:
Before booking your train tickets, it is important to research and compare different options to find the best one for you. Websites such as Trainline, Rail Europe or Amtrak can be useful for booking train tickets. You can make a reservation in advance to ensure you get the best price possible. It’s also advisable to check if there are any discounts available, such as student or senior discounts.
Packing for Your Journey:
Packing for a train journey requires different considerations than packing for a flight. You may want to pack some entertainment, such as books, magazines or music, as well as a comfortable outfit for the long journey. Depending on the length of the train ride, snacks and water might also come in handy.
Choosing Your Route:
There are many scenic train routes around the world, each offering their own unique experience. It’s important to consider your personal preferences, budget and desired destinations when choosing a route. Some popular routes include the Trans-Siberian Railway, the Rocky Mountaineer, the Glacier Express and the Eastern and Oriental Express.
Benefits of Train Travel:
Train travel offers many benefits, such as a more comfortable and flexible travel experience, as well as stunning views of the scenery passing by. It’s also a more eco-friendly option compared to air travel, with lower carbon emissions.
Tips for Train Travel:
1. Book in advance to get the best price possible and ensure a reserved seat.
2. Pack lightly, as there may not be a lot of storage space on the train.
3. Consider upgrading to a higher class of service for a more comfortable experience.
4. Prepare for delays or train changes, especially on longer journeys.
5. Take advantage of the opportunity to meet new people and socialize during your journey.
Resources for Train Travel:
1. Trainline.com – a useful website for booking train tickets in Europe.
2. RailEurope.com – offers tickets and passes for train travel throughout Europe and beyond.
3. Amtrak.com – the national railroad carrier in the United States.
4. Seat61.com – a comprehensive guide to train travel around the world.
In conclusion, traveling by train is a remarkable way to discover the world while experiencing breathtaking landscapes, cultures, and destinations. The most scenic train routes and destinations provide awe-inspiring views, unforgettable moments, and a deep connection with nature and people. Whether you’re an adventure traveler seeking new experiences or a curious explorer looking to connect with the world in a profound way, a train journey is an exceptional option. From the Swiss Alps to the Australian outback, and from the Canadian Rockies to the Peruvian Andes, there are countless train routes and destinations waiting to be explored. So let your inner explorer come out and set off on an unforgettable journey that will leave you with memories to last a lifetime. After all, nothing can compare to seeing the world from the comfort and charm of a train.
FAQ – The Most Scenic Train Routes and Destinations
1. Q: What are some of the most scenic train routes in the world?
A: Some of the most scenic train routes in the world include the Rocky Mountaineer in Canada, the Trans-Siberian Railway in Russia, and the Glacier Express in Switzerland.
2. Q: Is train travel more sustainable than other forms of travel?
A: Yes, train travel is generally more sustainable than other forms of travel such as air travel or driving a car. Trains produce fewer emissions per passenger than airplanes, and they use less fuel than cars.
3. Q: Can you travel by train to remote destinations?
A: Yes, trains can take you to remote destinations that are not accessible by car or plane. For example, the train to Machu Picchu in Peru takes you through the Andes mountains to the ancient Incan city.
4. Q: Are sleeper trains comfortable for overnight travel?
A: Sleeper trains can be very comfortable for overnight travel, especially if you book a private cabin. Some trains even have luxury private cabins with en-suite bathrooms and panoramic views.
5. Q: Can you see wildlife from a train?
A: Yes, you can see wildlife from a train in many places around the world. The Rocky Mountaineer in Canada, for example, offers stunning views of grizzly bears, moose, and eagles.
6. Q: Are train journeys expensive?
A: Train journeys can be expensive, especially if you book a luxury cabin or a first-class ticket. However, there are often budget options available for those who are willing to sacrifice a bit of comfort.
7. Q: How long do train journeys usually take?
A: Train journeys can vary in length depending on the destination and route. Some journeys are just a few hours, while others can take several days.
8. Q: Can you stop and explore destinations on a train journey?
A: Yes, many train journeys allow you to stop and explore destinations along the way. For example, the Rocky Mountaineer stops in several towns along its route.
9. Q: How do you book a train journey?
A: Train journeys can be booked online or through a travel agent. It’s important to book early to ensure you get the dates and accommodations you want.
10. Q: What are some tips for traveling by train?
A: Some tips for traveling by train include packing light, bringing snacks and water, being prepared for delays or schedule changes, and enjoying the scenery along the way.