5 of the Best Rail Vacations in Great Britain and Ireland
Escape into the rich history, peaceful towns, and beautiful landscapes all while being treated to exceptional views as you travel – especially when on board iconic trains, like the Jacobite Steam Train on our Complete Scotland by Rail trip! Plus, with rail getaways across the UK and Ireland, the change of scenery you've been looking forward to is easy with rail journeys from any UK station To help you get inspired, we profile some of our most popular UK and Ireland vacations below, any of which can be customized in any number of ways; extra nights, extra destinations – no problem! Get ready to discover closer to home by train!
1. Best of Britain by Rail
Take the ultimate vacation through Britain by rail! Start with three nights in London, with plenty of time to visit a whole host of attractions from Shakespeare’s Globe to Westminster Abbey, the Churchill War Rooms, or the Tower of London. Whilst in London you may also enjoy taking a day trip out to Stonehenge! Discover three of the UK’s most historic cities on a cultural rail vacation! Uncover the home of Britain’s royals in London, stroll past the city walls and discover the ancient Roman city of York, and ride the rails to Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland and one of Europe’s prettiest cultural centers.
2. Complete Scotland by Rail
Looking to discover Scotland in all of its beauty? Our Complete Scotland by Rail vacation is one to consider! From the historic capital city of Edinburgh to the rugged and dramatic coastline of the Highlands, Scotland’s fresh air, ancient castles, and rugged landscapes are best discovered by rail! Explore ‘Complete Scotland’ on your next vacation and take to the tracks around some of the most beautiful corners in the world – including a trip on the Jacobite Steam Train! On this fantastic vacation, you’ll head into the Highlands with visits to the spectacularly located and romantic Glen Urquhart Castle and Loch Ness. One of the real highlights though is a full-day trip over to the fabled Isle of Skye with its remote and unforgettable mountainous landscapes and even the dramatic and beautiful Eilean Donan Castle. There’s a reason that this is one of our most popular vacations!
3. Belmond Royal Scotsman Highland Journey
Enjoy faultless service and gourmet dining as you travel aboard the Belmond Royal Scotsman into the majestic scenery of the Scottish Highlands. Start with two nights in London, discovering all the sights of this iconic city. Then enjoy two nights in historic Edinburgh before boarding the opulent carriages of the Royal Scotsman for two unforgettable nights touring the Scottish Highlands. Explore a 13th-century castle at the Rothiemurchus Estate, discover the verdant scenery and fascinating past of the Culloden Battlefields, and enjoy a whiskey-tasting session at the famous Strathisla distillery. Relax in the opulent surroundings of the Royal Scotsman as the breathtaking Scottish landscapes roll past your window on this journey of a lifetime. Relax in the opulent surroundings of the iconic Royal Scotsman and experience delicious, locally sourced, and regionally influenced cuisine onboard, as well as your own private steward and luxury room accommodations. You’ll feel like royalty! Stops along this journey are as impressive and immersive as being on the train. Explore the 13th-century castle on the Rothiemurchus Estate, discover the verdant scenery and fascinating past of the Culloden Battlefields, and enjoy a one-of-a-kind whiskey tasting session at the famous Strathisla distillery. This journey is simply the best way to experience Scotland in style!
4. Dublin, Cork, Killarney, and Galway
Sample the exquisite beauty of the Emerald Isle on your next vacation! From the coastal gem of Dublin at the mouth of the River Liffey to the majestic beauty of the UNESCO-listed Cliffs of Moher and the seaside villages and rocky coastline of the Ring of Kerry, some of Ireland’s most tantalizing gems await. Travel like a local with rail journeys between cities and make the most out of your stay with sightseeing tours to the most beautiful and popular highlights of Dublin, Cork, Killarney with its beautiful national park, located on the shores of Lough Leane, and Galway, the cultural heart of Ireland.
5. Dublin, London, and Edinburgh
Visit three European capital cities on your next vacation, making use of the fantastic rail connections along the way! Immerse yourself in the culture and craic of Dublin, the capital of the Emerald Isle, and enjoy a day trip to kiss the Blarney Stone at Blarney Castle. Catch the ferry to England and explore the vibrant city of London, before catching the train north to Edinburgh and exploring the history and scenery of the Scottish Highlands!