5 of the Best Romantic Vacations by Train
What could be more romantic than a vacation by train? If you’ve got an anniversary, birthday or honeymoon coming up, couple your adventurous side with your starry-eyed love of dreamy scenery, great company and relaxing atmosphere on a blissful, relaxing experience you’ll both remember forever. Here are our top 5 picks for letting romance ride the rails…
No list of romantic rail journeys would be complete without a mention of the famous Venice Simplon-Orient-Express, linking London to the winding canals, artistic charm and backstreet trattorias of Venice. The journey itself winds through verdant British and French countryside before rolling past the imposing mountain passes of Switzerland and Austria, steaming through Verona and crossing the causeway to the banks of the Venetian Grand Canal. The gorgeous Wagon-Lits carriages, the opulent dining cars, convivial piano bar and sumptuous sleeping compartments all make this the journey of a lifetime, not to mention the exquisite fine dining and first-rate service, that truly harken back to the wonderful ‘golden age of travel’! It’s certainly worth all the hype, but the best way to know is to experience it for yourself!
This delightful pair comprises two of the most scenic train rides in the world. Looking through the panoramic windows, everyday life melts away before your eyes, giving way to towering peaks, chocolate-box towns and miles of changing landscapes stretching out to the horizon. On the Glacier Express, the narrow-gauge train crawls through beautiful scenery and takes over seven blissful hours to cover 180 miles of track. It proudly touts its affectionate moniker ‘World Slowest Express Train’ and indeed – why would you want to rush through scenery this good? From Glacier to the trademark red carriages of the Bernina Express, you’ll watch Swiss wonderlands take on a true Italian flair as you roll over 200 bridges along the UNESCO-listed tracks. Keep an eye out for the famous Landwasser Viaduct – it really is something special to behold. From green pastures, sunlit fields and pretty flora in the summer months to an icy, Narnia-esque paradise in the winter, there’s really no bad time to travel and forget the rest of the world for a little while with the one you love.
From the historic capital city 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 of the world. Experience the famous Jacobite Steam Train from Edinburgh to Fort William and meander through some of the world's most stunning scenery, crossing the Glenfinnan Viaduct made famous in the Harry Potter films. This journey is often described as the greatest in the world, and the tracks roll past Ben Nevis, Loch Morar and Loch Nevis itself. Romantic and historic!
Combine the beautiful cities of Zurich, Innsbruck and Vienna with incredibly scenic rail journeys tucked in between for a truly romantic journey through Switzerland and Austria. Starting in Zurich, peruse the shops along the Bahnhofstrasse, famed as one of the most attractive shopping streets in the world, or marvel at the works of Van Gogh, Rodin and Monet at the much-loved Kunsthaus art gallery. Enjoy a fun night at Cabaret Voltaire before snuggling into the incredibly scenic train ride to Innsbruck the next morning. This spectacular journey travels along the banks of Lake Zurich before you are greeted with spectacular Alpine scenery. Travel along the famed Arlberg Pass, through gorgeous mountain meadows and be delighted at every turn by the wonderful vistas. In Innsbruck, take in a cozy bar in the Old Town for some local good grub slightly off the beaten track, or try sledding by moonlight in winter for a romantic adventure. Then continue to one of the most romantic cities in Europe - Vienna - for art, opera and world-famous cuisine.
Thousands of years of culture, three iconic Italian gems, and one truly romantic adventure. From the peaceful, winding canals of Venice to the artistic masterpieces and Tuscan delicacies of Florence and the illuminated fountains and the tangible history of Rome – what could be better? Transfer between cities by high-speed train as the magnificent Italian countryside unfolds past your window.