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Rail Holidays

41 tours from £495pp

Whether you are looking for a late summer or an autumn getaway this year or want to plan now for 2022, we have plenty of rail holiday experiences for you to choose from. For those wanting to stay closer to home, take a look at our UK breaks which feature six NEW tours including journeys along the railways of Kent, walking in the Lake District, and springtime gardens of Norfolk with Christine Walkden. Further afield, our new rail tours for 2022 include the once in a decade event, Floriade and some fantastic new Italian holidays that take in Rome, the Amalfi Coast & Sicily or the Italian Lakes combined with Puglia. From the mountain tops of the Swiss Alps and as far south as Morocco, all of our holidays will allow you to sit back, relax and travel in style, whilst taking in the stunning sights and scenery right from the comfort of your seat.

NEW

Join TV historian Lucy Worsley on this exclusive tour of Norfolk. Enjoy visits to Cromer, Sandringham Estate and Wroxham, as well as rides aboard five different trains including the Bure Valley Steam Railway and a paddle boat cruise on the picturesque Norfolk Broads.

  • 4 nights’ half board accommodation in Norwich
  • Exclusive Q&A with Historian Lucy Worsley
  • 4 railway journeys in Norfolk
  • Enjoy free time in Wroxham & Cromer
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

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Join us for 6 days as we travel to Nice to stay at the wonderful 4-star Hotel Palace Diano Marina resort & hotel. You’ll get to experience the magnificent Nice Carnival Flower Parade & the famous Menton Lemon Festival (The Fete du Citron).

  • Return Eurostar & TGV from London – Nice
  • 5 nights' half board accommodation in Diano Marina, Italy
  • Welcome drink
  • Free time in Diano Marina
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Discover the inspiration behind two of the world’s most famous artists on an historical journey through northern France. Visit the homes of Leonardo da Vinci and Claude Monet, head to the enchanting Palace of Versailles and explore the superb Château de Chenonceau.

  • Return Eurostar from London to Paris
  • 3 nights’ half-board accommodation at the Parc Hotel, Plessis-Robinson
  • A chance to see the one and only Monet’s Garden
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Enjoy the perfect blend of incredible rail journeys and invigorating countryside walks on an adventure through the Yorkshire Dales’ rolling hills. Visit the home of the Brontë sisters, ride on classic steam trains and traverse the Pennine Bridleway on foot.

  • 4 nights’ half-board accommodation at the Rendezvous Hotel, Skipton
  • Packed lunch on the three walking days
  • 3 train journeys
  • 3 guided walks around the Yorkshire Dales
  • Services of two experienced local walking guides and Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Discover the delights of the Peak District on this enchanting break by rail. Join us as we journey back to a bygone era and experience preserved historic railways, restored to their former glory, offering a glimpse into times gone by.

  • 4 nights’ half-board accommodation at the Breadsall Priory Marriott Hotel & Country Club
  • Coach transfers for our excursions
  • Entrance and free time at Crich Tramway Village
  • Enjoy a steam train journey on the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

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Embark on a memorable journey through a magical winter wonderland on the enchanting Glacier Express. Slowly wind through the heart of the snowy Swiss Alps, join a cogwheel railway up Mount Rigi and enjoy a cruise on glistening Lake Thun.

  • Return Eurostar from London to Paris
  • 4 nights’ bed and breakfast accommodation at the Hotel Carlton Europe, Interlaken
  • Journey on the Glacier Express
  • Journey on the Goldenpass Line to Lucerne
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Embark on an incredible journey through the heart of Spain and into North Africa, exploring bustling cities, colourful souks and magnificent mosques en route. You’ll visit Barcelona and Madrid before moving on to Tangier, Chefchaouen, Casablanca and Marrakech in Morocco.

  • Eurostar from London to Paris
  • Flight from Marrakech to London Gatwick
  • 3 night’s bed and breakfast
  • 2 nights' half-board accommodation in Tangier
  • 1 night's half-board accommodation in Casablanca
  • 3 nights’ bed and breakfast in Marrakech with dinner on 1 night
  • Visits to Barcelona, Madrid, Chefchaouen, Casablanca and Marrakech
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Experience the very best of Britain’s West Country on a journey through the most scenic landscapes of the Cotswolds and the Avon Valley. Travel along heritage railways, explore local market towns and enjoy a ride on the Bristol Packet Boat.

  • 4 nights’ half-board accommodation at the Best Western Premier Collection Blunsdon House Hotel
  • Coach transfers for our excursions
  • Journey on the Gloucestershire and Warwickshire Railway
  • Ride on the Avon Valley Railway
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Explore the fascinating sights and rolling scenery of Yorkshire whilst embarking on classic steam journeys such as the Keighley & Worth Valley Railway. Your holiday includes excursions such as Ripley Castle and a cruise on the Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

  • 4 nights’ half-board accommodation at the Rendezvous Hotel, Skipton
  • Coach transfers for our excursions
  • Explore Ripon with free time
  • 3 railway journeys
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

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NEW

  • Four nights’ half board accommodation in Norwich
  • Coach transfers for our excursions
  • Enjoy free time in Wroxham, Horning & Holt
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

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Journey along some of the most picturesque railways in Europe and enjoy basking in the Mediterranean sun on this Corsica island adventure. Travel onboard the Little Trains of Corsica, staying in quaint mountain villages and the capital, Ajaccio, as you go.

  • Return Eurostar from London to Lille
  • TGV from Lille to Nice and Marseille to Lille
  • Return daytime ferry crossings to Corsica
  • 7 nights’ half-board accommodation on Corsica
  • 2 night’s bed and breakfast
  • Free time in Bastia, Calvi, Corte and Ajaccio
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

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Immerge yourself in the stunning scenery of lakes and mountains on this unforgettable journey through France and Switzerland. Travel on the magnificent Mont Blanc Express, see the mighty mountain itself from Geneva and explore Annecy – the Venice of the Alps.

  • Return Eurostar from London to Paris
  • Connecting rail journeys
  • 5 nights’ half-board accommodation
  • Coach transfers
  • Homemade cakes and soft drinks served at the hotel between 4pm - 6pm
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

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Visit Dolceacqua, San Remo and more on the stunning Italian Riviera and lose yourself in the beauty of one of the world’s most famous botanic gardens.

  • Return Eurostar from London
  • Return TGV to Nice
  • Return coach transfer to our hotel
  • Coach transfers for our excursions
  • 7 nights’ half board accommodation in Diano Marina
  • Free time in the resort of Diano Marina
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

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Experience 4 different trains, from the Roses Express road train to the Núria Valley Rack Railway, as you explore the French Pyrenees and Spain’s stunning Costa Brava. You’ll visit the famous Dalí Theatre-Museum in the popular town of Figueres too.

  • Return Eurostar from London to Paris
  • Return TGV from Paris to Perpignan
  • 7 nights’ half-board accommodation in Roses
  • 4 incredible railway journeys
  • Free time in the resort of Roses
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Wave goodbye to winter and welcome the warmer climes of an Italian springtime on this eight-day rail holiday. Based on the charming Italian Rivera of flowers, this rail break will allow you to experience the region’s best destinations from San Remo to Portofino!

  • Return Eurostar from London to Lille
  • 7 nights’ half board accommodation at the Hotel Palace, Diano Marina
  • A typical Ligurian candle-light dinner with seven courses one evening
  • A drink included with each evening meal (soft drink or beer or glass of wine per person)
  • “Dolcezze Ligure” with Asti Spumante after dinner one evening
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Come with us to Lucerne, one of the prettiest cities in Switzerland, and journey through the Rhine Gorge, Stanserhorn Mountain and Mount Pilatus by funicular rail, cogwheel rail and cable car.

  • Return Eurostar from London to Paris
  • 5 nights’ bed and breakfast at the Waldstätterhof Swiss Quality Hotel, Lucerne
  • Sit back and relax on a Lake Lucerne cruise in first class with a 2-course lunch and drink included
  • Farewell dinner in a local restaurant
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Take a ride on four fabulous steam train journeys and enjoy a cruise on the beautiful Norfolk Broads. Experience the Bure Valley, Bittern Line, Poppy Line and the Mid Norfolk Railway, visiting Sandringham Estate and popular seaside towns along the way.

  • 4 nights’ half-board accommodation at the Holiday Inn Norwich North
  • Coach transfers for our excursions
  • 4 railway journeys in Norfolk
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Join us on this Gardeners’ World exclusive holiday and enjoy a gardener’s dream as we visit two fabulous gardens and a tea plantation, all situated in the lush green landscape of Italy’s Lake District.

  • Return Eurostar from London to Paris
  • Return TGV from Paris to Stresa
  • 7 nights half board accommodation on the shores of Lake Orta
  • Free time in the stunning resort of Lake Orta
  • Services of our experienced tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Journey through the magnificent Lake District National Park, taking in breathtaking scenery from famous heritage railways whilst onboard classic steam engines. Enjoy a steam boat cruise on glistening Lake Windermere, as well as tours of beautiful country houses and gardens.

  • 4 nights’ half-board accommodation at the North Lakes Hotel & Spa
  • Coach transfers for our excursions
  • Round trip on the Lakeside and Haverthwaite Railway
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Venture into the depths of Transylvania and discover medieval cities, spellbinding castles and spectacular UNESCO World Heritage sites. Travel by steam train through the Vaser Valley and spend time discovering Romania’s capital, Bucharest.

  • Return flights from London to Bucharest
  • 10 nights’ bed & breakfast accommodation
  • 5 dinners in restaurants including 1 on the famous Carpathia Express train and 1 at Bran Castle and 1 lunch in Moldovita
  • Steam train ride through the Vaser Valley and on the Mocanita
  • Services of an experienced local guide and our Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Board the charming Kent & East Sussex and Bluebell railways and travel to the historic homes of Kent, discovering the stories behind Churchill’s Chartwell and Anne Boleyn’s Hever Castle.

  • 4 nights’ half-board accommodation at the Dale Hill Hotel and Golf Club
  • A drink with each evening meal
  • Coach transfers for our excursions
  • Journey on the Kent & Sussex railway
  • Journey on the Bluebell Railway
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Witness the staggering beauty of the Dolomites as you journey along hidden mountain railways and explore the dazzling lakes of Northern Italy. Traverse the Brenner Pass, ride one of the steepest funiculars in Europe and enjoy an unforgettable cruise across Lake Garda.

  • Eurostar from London to Paris
  • TGV from Paris to Munich
  • Connecting rail journeys including a scenic journey to Trento via the Brenner Pass
  • Flight from Verona to London
  • 1 nights’ bed and breakfast in Munich
  • 7 nights’ half board accommodation in Molveno
  • 1 night’s bed and breakfast in Turin
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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On this trip to North Wales, you’ll sit back and relax on scenic rail journeys on the Welsh Highland and Snowdon Mountain Railways, explore the historic Gwydir Castle, wander beautiful Bodnant Garden and more.

  • coach transfers for our excursions
  • 4 nights' half board accommodation at the Llandudno Bay Hotel
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Enjoy spectacular scenery with a rail journey to the summit of Mount Snowdon, visit the Italianate village of Portmeirion, and sit back and relax onboard the Welsh Highland Railway.

  • 4 nights’ half-board accommodation at the Llandudno Bay Hotel
  • Coach transfers for our excursions
  • 4 railway journeys
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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What better way to explore the history of a destination, than to delve into the lives of the people who once lived there? This brand-new tour will take you on a journey through time, as we combine visits to some of Yorkshire’s great historic homes, with a spectacular steam train journey.

  • 4 nights’ half board accommodation in Yorkshire
  • Entrance to Fairfax House & Nunnington Hall
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Experience history, culture and beauty of some of Irelands famous places on a truly enjoyable journey. With visits to the Achill Island, Galway and Connemara, we will set sights on the dramatic scenery of Ireland’s coastline, as well as visit historical treasures.

  • Return flights from London Gatwick to Knock
  • 5 nights’ accommodation with dinner, bed & full Irish breakfast at the Westport Woods Hotel & Spa
  • Scenic drive around the beautiful Achill Island with a local guide plus an included light lunch
  • Galway City guided Tour, with free time at leisure
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

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Begin your journey on the Eurostar, then continue by TGV through France and Italy, before reaching your base on tranquil Lake Orta. Visit the breathtaking Lake Maggiore, Locarno in Switzerland, stunning Lake Como, Lake Lugano and even explore trendy Milan.

  • Return Eurostar from London to Paris
  • Return TGV from Paris to Stresa
  • 7 nights’ half board accommodation at the Hotel Giardinetto, Pettenasco
  • Free time in the resort of Lake Orta
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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This five-day tour sees you travelling on no less than five different railways along the beautiful Somerset and Devon coasts. Highlights include riding both the Dartmouth Steam Railway and river boat, plus experiencing the famous Lyton & Lynmouth Cliff Railway.

  • 4 nights’ half-board accommodation at the Best Western Tiverton
  • 5 railway journeys
  • Coach transfers for our excursions
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

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Recognised as one of the UK’s most stunning areas of natural beauty, the Peak District national park offers the perfect setting for our brand-new rail and walking tour. Take in the regions very best sights by train and on foot from the quaint village of Bakewell to the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway and the Chatsworth Estate.

  • 4 nights’ half-board accommodation at the Breadsall Priory Marriott Hotel & Country Club
  • Packed lunch on the three walking days
  • 3 days of guided walks around the Peak District
  • Services of two qualified walking guides
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Embark on a magnificent journey through Italy, exploring its breathtaking colourful coast as you go. Relax in the seaside resort of Diano Marina, visit San Remo’s hilltop villages and admire the pastel houses of Portofino.

  • Return Eurostar from London to Lille
  • Return TGV from Lille to Nice
  • 6 nights’ half board accommodation in Diano Marina
  • Free time in the resort of Diano Marina
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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NEW

Travel to England’s beautiful north-east – the birthplace of railways – for a fascinating journey through history. Ride on the South Tynedale Railway, visit Alnwick Castle, the open-air Beamish Museum, Bowes Railway Museum and enjoy a guided walk around the ancient city of Durham.

  • 4 nights’ half-board accommodation at the Durham Marriott Hotel Royal County
  • Coach transfers for our excursions
  • Round trip on the South Tynesdale railway
  • Guided walking tour of Durham
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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NEW

Join us on this delightful, five-day rail holiday as we explore the unique charms and natural wonders of the Isle of Man. Combine two magnificent rail journeys, one electric and one steam hauled with a visit to the capital of Douglas – a wonderful city with Victorian charm and stunning waterfront. With time to also explore Peel, Ramsey and Laxey, this is the perfect escape for those wanting to discover the Isle of Man.

  • 4 nights’ half-board accommodation at the Empress Hotel, Douglas
  • Free time to explore Douglas
  • Board the Isle of Man steam railway
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager
  • Coach transfers for our excursions

Availability:

  • 2023
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Transport yourself to a fairytale land as you discover the enchanting beauty of Lake Bled. Explore historical Ljubljana, traverse the Julian Alps, venture inside one of the largest caves in the world and relax in the coastal resort of Portoro.

  • Return Eurostar from London to Paris
  • TGV from Paris to Munich and Turin to Paris
  • 2 nights’ bed and breakfast
  • 4 nights’ half board accommodation at Lake Bled
  • 3 nights’ half board accommodation in Portorož
  • Do as you please with your free time in the resort of Portoro
  • Take some free time to relax on the shores of Lake Bled
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Stroll labyrinthine alleyways laced with the aroma of spice and perfume, take in architectural wonders of heart-stopping beauty and surrender to the timeless romance of this captivating city, where Africa, Europe and the Middle East converge.

  • Return flights from London to Marrakech
  • 6 nights’ bed and breakfast at the 4-star Riyad el Cadi
  • 4 evening meals and 3 lunches
  • Guided visits to sites listed in the programme
  • Detailed programme and study notes
  • Services of your expert lecturer and Tour Manager
  • All entrance fees, taxes and gratuities for coach drivers and waiters

Availability:

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Explore Stratford-upon-Avon visiting Anne Hathaway's Cottage and Shakespeare's birthplace. Learn about heroic codebreakers at Bletchley Park, enjoy a day at Sudeley Castle in the Cotswolds, and relax with a scenic rail journey on this historical holiday.

  • 4 nights’ half board accommodation at the 3-star Charlecote Pheasant Hotel
  • Coach transfers for our excursions
  • Sight-seeing tour of Stratford with a local Blue Badge Guide
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

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Partake in a relaxing visit to RHS Harlow Carr Gardens, wander the homes and gardens of Harewood House and Newby Hall, and learn the fascinating history of Raby Castle on this delightful escorted tour.

  • 4 nights' half-board accommodation at the Old Swan Hotel in Harrogate
  • Coaching for our excursions
  • Light lunch voucher at Harewood House
  • Services of our experienced Arena Travel Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Join us as we enjoy 4 nights in the stylish mountain resort of Interlaken, our base from which we will experience 2 of Switzerland’s most glorious rail journeys.

  • Return Eurostar from London to Paris
  • Connecting rail journeys to Interlaken
  • Journey on the GoldenPass Line to Lucerne
  • 4 nights’ bed and breakfast in Interlaken
  • Journey on the Glacier Express with a 3 course lunch onboard
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Travel to Stresa and experience the lakes and gardens of Italy. Take a boat trip to Iso Bella, explore the tropic Borromean Palace, enjoy the scenic views of Orta San Giulio and much more on this trip to Stresa.

  • Return Eurostar from London to Paris
  • Return TGV from Paris to Stresa
  • 6 nights’ half board accommodation at the 4-star Hotel Astoria in the lakeside resort of Stresa
  • Glass of Prosecco with lunch on day two
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Visit the tranquil Tudor Gwydir Castle, explore the gardens at Penrhyn, Plas Cadnant and Bodnant, stroll through the picturesque village of Beaumaris and take a train to Snowdon’s peak.

  • 4 nights’ half-board accommodation at the Llandudno Bay Hotel
  • Coach transfers for our excursions
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Discover Leiden on foot and cruise Amsterdam’s canals, taking in the delightful colours of springtime Holland as you visit the Keukenhof Gardens, Hortus Botanicus and the heart of the flower-bulb region.

  • Return Eurostar from London to Amsterdam
  • Coach transfers for our excursions
  • 4 nights’ half-board accommodation at the nhow Amsterdam RAI Hotel
  • 1 farewell dinner at the Grand Café Restaurant 1ste Klas in Amsterdam including 1 drink per person and tea/coffee
  • Services of an Arena Travel Tour Manager

Availability:

  • 2023
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Enter Portugal and experience the capital Lisbon, the authenticity of Porto, the magical Douro Valley and discover Portugal’s history and beauty.

  • Return flights from London to Lisbon, returning from Porto
  • 1st class rail travel between Lisbon and Porto
  • 7 nights’ bed & breakfast in Lisbon and Porto
  • 3 evening meals with drinks included (water, beer or wine and tea/coffee)
  • 4-course lunch with drinks at DOC restaurant
  • Free time in Lisbon and Porto
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Availability:

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Rail Holidays Highlights

Here at Arena Travel we offer journeys on some of the most iconic railways in the whole world. From the Glacier Express, offering breathtaking views of the Swiss Alps, to the Poppyline, showcasing Norfolk's best scenery - there's an unforgettable journey to be had on any of our rail holidays.

Railways

Glacier Express

Don’t be fooled by its name, the Glacier Express is not an ‘express’ train but a journey of discovery through some of Switzerland’s most breathtaking scenery. It is in fact the slowest express train in the world.

GoldenPass Line

First opened in the year 1905, the GoldenPass Line is one of Switzerland’s most iconic rail routes, passing through some of the country’s most spectacular scenery on its 150km route.

Mont Blanc Express

Over 110 years old, the famous Mont Blanc Express has been travelling from St Gervais Le Fayet in France, all the way through the Chamonix Valley, and on into Martigny in Switzerland since 1908.

Pinzgauer Railway

The 53km narrow gauge railway connects the Austrian towns of the upper Salzach Valley and travels from Zell am See through the Pinzgau mountains.

Mendola Mountain Funicular

One of Europe’s steepest tracks with an 845 metre incline and a 64% gradient, the 2370 metre long Medola Mountain Pass Funicular is one of the most spectacular rail routes in the world – offering stunning views from the Italian Dolomites as it passes through woodland and mountainous terrain.

Planning your trip

With so much on offer, you might need some inspiration! We’ve hand-picked a selection of favourite destinations and provided an overview of the very best highlights...

Centovalli Railway

Centovalli Railway Highlights

Linking the Swiss canton of Locarno with the Italian region of Domodossola, the narrow gauge Centovalli railway offers one of the most beautiful train journeys in the world.

Crossing through Italy’s One Hundred Valleys, the journey will take you past glorious countryside, green vistas, tiny hilltop villages and over thrilling viaducts. It is the quickest way to get from Bern in Switzerland to the Italian Lake of Maggiore and has been in operation since 1925.

The Centovalli railway features on our Lake Maggiore & Borromean Islands tour.

Glacier Express

Glacier Express Highlights


Don’t be fooled by its name, the Glacier Express is not an ‘express’ train but a journey of discovery through some of Switzerland’s most breathtaking scenery. It is in fact the slowest express train in the world.

 

Passing over almost 300 bridges and through 91 tunnels, the train travels 291km from St Moritz to Zermatt. Its panoramic windows mean guests travelling aboard can truly embrace the views of the passing alpine meadows, mountain brooks, glacial peaks and sights such as the famous Landwasser Viaduct and the Overalp Pass. With the option to enjoy a delicious three course meal, which is served to you at your seat – surely there’s no better way to see Switzerland than on board the Glacier Express.

 

The Glacier Express features on four of our Swiss rail tours.

GoldenPass Line

GoldenPass Line Highlights


First opened in the year 1905, the GoldenPass Line is one of Switzerland’s most iconic rail routes, passing through some of the country’s most spectacular scenery on its 150km route.

 

Connecting central Switzerland with Lake Geneva, the entire route passes from Montreux to Lucerne and consists of three different trains – which you will have to hop on and off if you want to undertake the whole journey.

 

One lovely view follows another, and as you travel past lush green vistas, wooden chalets, cows grazing in flowery meadows and the crystal clear waters of Lake Geneva, you may start to think that the scenery was created specifically for the rail route – but we can assure you, it wasn’t.

 

The views are enhanced even further by the comfortable, classic Belle Epoque or modern panoramic carriages – which make taking in the views that little bit more special.

 

Take in Switzerland’s spectacular scenery aboard the GoldenPass Line on our Christmas & New Year Glacier Express Magic and Grand Swiss Railways, train holidays.

Mendola Mountain Funicular

Mendola Mountain Funicular Highlights

One of Europe’s steepest tracks with an 845 metre incline and a 64% gradient, the 2370 metre long Medola Mountain Pass Funicular is one of the most spectacular rail routes in the world – offering stunning views from the Italian Dolomites as it passes through woodland and mountainous terrain.

 After 14 months of nonstop construction, the funicular railway was officially opened on the 3rd October 1903. Today the little train, that transports eager passengers up and down the Dolomites, is thriving, with thousands of visitors clambering aboard each year.

 Surprisingly however, the train wasn’t always as popular with visitors as it is today.

 Due to a low number of passengers, in 1916 the train was assigned to be used only for the purposes of the military and in 1933 it closed altogether.

 Thankfully due to a resurgence in tourism after the Second World War and a new desire for adventure – the rail line was reopened in 1988 and after a revamp in 2009 it has not stopped growing in popularity.

 See sights you’ve never seen before and travel to the top of the Dolomites on our Little Trains of the Dolomites rail tour.

Mont Blanc Express

Mont Blanc Express Highlights

Over 110 years old, the famous Mont Blanc Express has been travelling from St Gervais Le Fayet in France, all the way through the Chamonix Valley, and on into Martigny in Switzerland since 1908.

 The mountain train crosses varied terrains as it travels from the wild Trient Gorge and ascends breath-taking heights as it reaches Chamonix. Travellers will then see waterfalls, shady forests and cosy hilltop villages before reaching the mighty Mont Blanc, Europe's highest peak.

 See the mighty Mont Blanc by train on the Lake Annecy and the Mont Blanc Express rail tour.

Pinzgauer Railway

Pinzgauer Railway Highlights

The 53km narrow gauge railway connects the Austrian towns of the upper Salzach Valley and travels from Zell am See through the Pinzgau mountains.

Work began constructing the 121 year old Pinzgauer railway in 1896, when emperor Franz Josef agreed work on the rail line could commence, and two years later, the route was complete with the first journey taking place in 1898.

Today the train chugs along at a steady pace of 43mph, transporting around 900,000 passengers a year from Zell am See to one of Austria’s most popular tourist destinations – Krimml Falls.

Enjoy a spectacular journey and top it off with a visit to the stunning Krimml Falls on our Oberammergau Passion Play rail holiday.

Heritage Railways

Heritage Railways Highlights

Poppy Line

Poppy Line Highlights

First opened in 1887, The Poppy Line, also known as the North Norfolk Railway, is one of England’s most popular rail routes. Each year many people descend on the East coast from all over the country, to enjoy a journey on this scenic heritage railway.

The steam train, with its vintage carriages, offers a 10.5 mile round trip, running from Sheringham to Holt. It’s the best way to experience the delightful Norfolk scenery, as poppy fields and wooded hills offer a treat for the eyes. Each train station along the route also provides a unique history lesson and an atmosphere of a bygone age.

Snowdon Mountain Railway

Snowdon Mountain Railway Highlights

The Snowdon Mountain Railway began offering journeys from Llanberis, to the summit of Mount Snowdon, in the year 1896. It is a truly unique experience and offers some of the world’s most spectacular views. 

The narrow gauge, rack and pinion mountain railway covers 7.53km and it is the only one of its kind available to the public in the UK. It is a 1085m climb to the summit and as the little steam train chugs along up the tracks it offers views of rocky valleys, rolling green hills and an abundance of wildlife to those onboard – before reaching the UK’s highest visitor centre, Hafod Eryri.

Trinicellu Railway

Trinicellu Railway Highlights

Way back in 1877, the people of Corsica decided that they'd had enough of travelling coast to coast, town to town by donkey or on horseback, and thus the idea to build a gauge railway was born.

It took 22 years and 20,000 labourers to build the single-track railway, which was all laid by hand - and possibly the cause of the distinctive wobble so many tourists and locals have come to love.

The line was finally complete in 1899 and the 232km long network serves 16 stations, with around ten journeys run throughout the day during the summer months, making it very easy to hop on and off and visit different locations across the island.

Even though “the boneshaker”, as it is often nicknamed, loudly clatters over uneven tracks, it is worth the occasional jostling for one of the most scenic train routes in the world. 

The journey from Corte to Ajaccio is often said to be the most beautiful routes, with sights including the Vecchio viaduct, engineered by the one and only Gustav Eiffel and the Vizzavona Forest.


Vulkan Express Railway

Vulkan Express Railway Highlights

Taking over an hour to travel just 11 miles, the Vulkan Express is all about sitting back, relaxing and enjoying the ride. Travelling between Brohl and Engeln the line first opened in 1901 but it was forced to close in 1961 due to the dwindling freight services.

Luckily for us though, a group of rail enthusiasts appealed for it to be reopened as a tourist train, and in 1977 the Vulkan Express carried its first load of commercial passengers.

Passing volcanic rock formations and fairytale castles, it’s no surprise that the Vulkan Express remains a firm favourite with tourists to this day.

Yellow Train of the Pyrenees

Yellow Train of the Pyrenees Highlights

The Jaune railway, also known as the Yellow Train of the Pyrenees, first took to the tracks in the year 1910 after seven years of hard work.

The gauge railway runs from Villefranche-de-Conflent in Spain to Latour-de-Carol-Enveitg in the French Pyrenees. The route is 63km long and climbs up to a height of 1593m, making Latour-de-Carol-Enveitg the highest train station in Europe.

Its distinct bright yellow carriages are inspired by the yellow colour of the Catalan flag and you have a choice to sit within a closed cabin or trundle along on one of the train’s open cabins – allowing you to fully embrace the scenery.

Another interesting fact about the Jaune railway is that the train itself is electrically powered by hydro electric generators in the River Tet – making it totally environmentally friendly!

The journey is one of stunning scenery, as the train winds its way across viaducts running over steep ravines, meadows of wildflowers and through chasms – exhilarating!