How can you make sure that you take in some of the world’s most stunning scenery whilst you are traveling through Europe? Take the train of course, but with so many striking destinations to choose from, how do you pick one that’s right for you and your family? It all depends on what part of Europe you want to see, and whether you favour magnificent mountains, idyllic lakes, protected heritage sites or amazing panoramic views.
Whichever train trip you decide to take, traveling by rail takes all the stress out of having to plan your routes, checking in at hotels, organising meals, and as such, leaves you entirely free to enjoy the scenery and views.
Check out our pick of the best European train trips:
FRANCE – Dordogne & Lot 2013 – Six days for £648
Dordogne is a beautiful and incredibly picturesque region of southwest France, famous of course for the Dordogne River, and surrounded by gorgeous little villages. It has a amazing historical feel, partly due to the fact that it plays host to around 1,500 castles, all situated within the beautiful countryside. You can check out the farmers markets, providing fine local produce, and take in a trip on steam train and a relaxing river cruise along the stunning Dordogne River. Visit railholidays.
ITALY – Highlights of Tuscany 2013 – 10 days for £1,478
Tuscany is a favourite of artists both old and modern, and this tour takes in some of its most stunning rural scenery. The traditional ochre and terracotta buildings are situated within farmland and fields of corn and poppies, and magnificently contrast with the splendor of the buildings in the great Renaissance cities. Overnight stays include Chambery and Turin, and there is also a a guided tour of Pisa Lucca San Gimignan. You can take in a cookery demonstration and wine tasting in a castle in the Chianti region, and then travel onto Chambery, where you will spend the night at the Mercure Chambery Centre Hotel. Visit greatrail.
AUSTRIA – The Austrian Alps 2013 – 8 days for £875
Take in the splendor of the Tyrolean landscapes, complete with quaint towns and some of Austria’s most famous resorts on this rail trip. This rail journey includes a trip to Kitzbühel , situated within the stunning landscape of the Hahnenkamm and Kitzbüheler Horn mountains. For lovers of mountainous regions, this promises to be the trip of a lifetime, as you get to see the Alps from a cable car, and then continue on to the Old Town, which hosts a variety of colourful dwellings, all alongside a professional tour guide. Visit railholidays.
GERMANY – Great little trains of the Rhine Valley – 6 days for £529
This stunning region includes fairytale styled castles, set upon steep valley hillsides and situated within a romantic landscape. The area is renowned for vineyards, where you can stop for a while and sample the local wines, and where the pretty towns and villages with horse drawn carriages allow to you explore this region in detail. Visit holidaysbyrail.
SWITZERLAND – The Jungfrau Express 2013 – 8 days £1,075
There is only one place to go if you want to see snow capped mountains in an amazing region, and that’s Switzerland. Travel towards the romantic shores of Lake Thun where the landscape takes a dramatic turn on the Jungfrau Express tour. Stop at Interlaken, which is one of the region’s most scenic towns, situated just below the majestic peaks of the Eiger, Jungfrau and Mönch mountains. Visit railholidays.