There is a certain old-world charm in train rides that are augmented with a breathtaking view of the countryside that is serene and quiet unlike the bustling commotion in the cities. Even though plane rides take significantly less time, travelling by train means enjoying the journey as it teaches something new and unique to the traveller each time
Trans-Siberian Railway, Russia
This railway is one of the longest rail routes in the world since it passes through the largest country in the world. Commencing its journey from the capital Moscow, this train ride gives a glimpse of the stunning countryside that comprises the Ural Mountains and viscous forests in Serbia. A total of seven days covering 8 time zones takes the passengers through the River Ob and the largest freshwater lake in the world, Lake Baikal whose blue waters are a sight for sore eyes.
TranzAlpine, New Zealand
Capturing the varied landscape of New Zealand with plush greenery from Christchurch to Canterbury which is the country’s major agricultural zone. The train ride ascends from the Southern Alps which towers over the vast scenery and you will pass through small hamlets and the fertile land created by the Waimakariri River and also cross the Staircase Viaduct. It travels through the famous Arthur’s Pass National Park and rushes towards the West Coast which has subtropical forests.
Glacier Express, Switzerland
Providing a unique panoramic view of the majestic Swiss Alps, crystal clear lakes, alpine meadows and the pristine valleys that are enveloped by the sprightly dance of a zillion flowers flushed with all the colours of the rainbows, this train ride is straight out of a fairytale. This ride forms a connection between the most popular resorts in the world – Zermatt and St Moritz and is a one day trip through southern Switzerland. The journey also takes the traveller through tunnels cut through mountains and the highest point Oberalp Pass which is at 6,706ft.
Jacobite Steam Train, Scotland
This train gained massive fame since it was featured in the Harry Potter movies as the Hogwarts Express forming the setting for the most iconic scenes. This 20th Century built steam train has a quaint charm that has a persona of its own. The Scottish moors and highlands are seen out of the window and fills an atmosphere that gently soothes the traveller’s senses. This beloved British train is a 42-mile journey that features the deepest seawater loch, Loch Morar along with stops at Glenfinnan, a delightful village and also numerous beaches.
Rovos Rail’s Namibia Safari, South Africa
This journey covers the most distinctive and alien landscapes that are unexplored that takes over 10 days covering 3,400km. This luxury on wheels is the very best of Africa and provides a glimpse of the grassland savannahs in South Africa. The passengers get to see Kimberly which used to be a diamond-rush town and was the biggest hand-dug mine on the globe. Traversing through the Kalahari Desert all the way to the capital of Nambia- Windhoek, the journey also passes through Fish River Canyon, Northern Cape, Namib Desert and Swakopmund.
The Flåm Railway, Norway
A trip to Norway is certainly incomplete without this picturesque ride that is often considered the most scenic train ride in the world. This one hour journey from the village of Flåm may be short in the time duration but is the grandest when it comes to providing the most breathtaking views of the Nordic fjords, pristine waterfalls and exalted mountaintops of Myrdal. During the winters, the whole landscape is wrapped up in snow and turns into a white fairyland.