Taking a trip by train is a great idea for those looking for a relaxing way to enjoy a break away from home and one which brings some different experiences to the usual beach side getaway. Here are five suggestions for some memorable great train holidays around the world.
Rail tours in Scotland might not have the initial allure of the sub tropical regions, but the north of the British Isles carries its own romance and certainly has scenery that is a match for anywhere else on Earth. Right up at the top of the land mass of Britain lays the magical town of Findhorn, where vegetation grows to unusually large sizes amongst the windswept beaches and hidden coves. The Urquhart Castle on the banks of Loch Ness has its own sense of mystery, as of course does the body of water it stands next to!
The Glacier Express is sometimes called the ‘Orient Express of the Alps’ as its leisurely pace marks it out as the slowest express train in Europe. The journey through the Alpine heart of Switzerland lasts over seven hours, travelling along narrow-gauge tracks through scenic ravines and snow covered mountains. The specially adapted train features panoramic windows and a glass skylight to give the best possible views of the amazing Alpine scenery.
A train tour of the Dordogne in France should also be high on any serious rail traveller’s wish list. The region itself presents beautiful scenery all year round and whatever your particular interests, there is something in the Dordogne to suit you. There are many prehistoric sites dotted along the Vezere River, including Lascaux II, Font-de-Gaume and Combarelles, representing a human history timeline of over fifty thousand years, whereas the town of Sarlat is the market of the region and is lit at night by gas lamps.
The California Zephyr has a well won reputation as one of the most beautiful train journeys in the whole of the Americas. Traversing the Rocky Mountains through to the snow capped Sierra Nevada, the range of vistas is equal to any other train journey in the world.
Travelling between Chicago and San Francisco, to Salt Lake City and San Francisco, the trip takes in some of the most cinematic wide screen scenarios that railway holidays in the United States have to offer.
India’s colonial past has gifted it a railway system quite unlike any other in the world. From the beaches of Goa to the massive urban conurbation and markets of Delhi, India is a five sense explosion of colour, sights, tastes and fragrances as a cocktail of cultures mix and match.
Train travel is arguably the best way to see as much of what India has to offer as possible, visiting historic towns and world class monuments such as the Taj Mahal, the Temple of Winds or the Blue City of Jodhpur. For rail travellers, there is therefore plenty to excite the senses in India.