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The Joys of Rail Travel


Rail Travel and Holidaying Abroad by Train

On most holidays, the journey is just a means of getting to the destination – the holiday only begins once you have arrived at your destination (often quite some distance from the airport you land at). India's Palace on WheelsA holiday by rail offers one thing that other forms of transport simply cannot match: a journey which is part of the holiday experience. On a holiday by rail you will quickly rediscover the romance and excitement of rail travel as you travel in perfect comfort to the very heart of your destination.

Compared to the misery of air travel, with inevitable huge queues for security checks, hours spent in cramped airport ‘lounges’ and even more cramped conditions on board the plane, it is easy to see why attitudes to travel are changing and why travellers are choosing trains as a more enjoyable means of embarking on their holidays.

The beauty of a holiday by rail is that you can sit back and admire the ever-changing scenery from the comfort of your seat, as you encounter new places and people, and gain impressions of other cultures. As a train is the most spacious mode of long-haul transport, you even have the added luxury of space. Far from being ‘hemmed in’ to your seat, you are free to get up and walk around freely between coaches – and in many cases there is a separate dining area on board.

Every corner of the UK and Europe is linked together by rail. As air routes begin to close and the cost of air travel increases, new high-speed rail lines are being opened across the Continent and Europe’s major cities are becoming easier and quicker to Blue Train, South Africareach by rail.

There are many parts of the world that simply can’t be seen other than by rail. Trains can take you through vast forests, across isolated wildernesses, or even to the summit of soaring mountain ranges – all in total comfort.


Whilst flying is still necessary to reach destinations outside of Europe, once you have arrived, the train offers a unique view of the world. Crossing vast continents, travelling through some of the wildest and most remote landscapes on the planet, seeing sights inaccessible by any other means of transport – all from the comfort of some of the world’s greatest trains; it really is an adventure. Whether you are travelling on the epic Trans-Siberian Express from Moscow to Vladivostok, enjoying a safari in South Africa on the legendary Blue Train (pictured above), crossing the vast continent of The Ghan, AustraliaAustralia on the iconic Ghan, or across Canada or the USA, you will remember the journey as much as the places you visit.

One of the joys of long distance rail travel is to savour the gradual change as you speed through the countryside. Every trip has its highlights - be it the sun-baked Red Centre of Australia, the snow-capped mountains of the Rockies, the mighty Rio Grande or the perfect symmetry of Mount Fuji - and the train is one of the best ways to appreciate them.

North America is an ideal continent to explore by rail. The Canadian was the last Trans-Continental train to be built for the famed Canadian Pacific Railway, and it is a true classic. The original stainless steel ‘streamliner’ coaches have been fully restored to their 1950s splendour and today carry passengers from Toronto on a dramatic journey, crossing the rugged landscape of the Canadian Shield and the wide-open prairies, through the majestic scenery of the Rockies to Vancouver. While should you wish to travel from New York to San Francisco, the legendary Amtrak services provide the ideal means.

Grand Canyon Railway, Coco CanyonWith so much to experience, why not sit back, relax and enjoy the ride as we re-enter the golden-age of the train, the most civilised and enjoyable means of exploring the world.

For more information on Great Rail Journeys holidays, and to request a brochure, call 01904 527 284 or visit


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