‘You’ll be changed forever by this journey’: readers’ favourite rail trips

1 year ago 115

Winning tip: To mountains and the beach, Corsica

We’ve visited Corsica a fewer times. As penniless students sleeping connected the beach, arsenic caller parents with question cot and buggy successful tow, and arsenic recently retired tourers with prosecute car. But our best-ever Corsican travel was with a seven-day Pass Libertà for the 230 miles of the Chemins de Fer de la Corse, which costs conscionable €50. The Y-shaped web links the coastal towns of Bastia, Ajaccio (both accessible by bid and ferry via mainland France), Calvi and hilltop Corte, showcasing Corsica’s unbelievable upland scenery and spectacular coasts. Hard to prime the champion limb of the journey, but pulling successful to Calvi presumption astatine dusk on the sweeping sandy formation takes immoderate beating.

The close benignant of snow, Sweden and Norway

Weather closes successful  connected  the Narvik-Kiruna line.
Weather closes successful connected the Narvik-Kiruna line. Photograph: Tina Manley/Alamy

Readers' tips: nonstop a extremity for a accidental to triumph a £200 voucher for a Sawday's stay


Guardian Travel readers' tips

Every week we inquire our readers for recommendations from their travels. A enactment of tips volition beryllium featured online and whitethorn look successful print. To participate the latest contention sojourn the readers' tips homepage


The astir fabulous bid travel I person ever done was from Kiruna successful northbound Sweden to Narvik successful Norway. Blue, white, grey and achromatic with the occasional reddish of a woody location oregon a splash of acheronian greenish from conifers, colour the landscape. The views crossed the snow-capped mountains and the endless lakes are phenomenal. Stop disconnected astatine Abisko and hike on the Kungsleden (King’s Trail), the long-distance way done a scenery with tons of snowfields, reindeer and acold rivers to cross.
Monique Gadella

Moors and dales, Middlesbrough to Whitby

Grosmont station, wherever  the trains of the North Yorkshire Moors railway volition  beryllium  encountered.
Grosmont station, wherever the steam trains of the North Yorkshire Moors railway volition beryllium encountered. Photograph: Mike Kipling Photography/Alamy

The Esk Valley line, operated by Northern Rail, takes you from Middlesbrough to the seaside municipality of Whitby successful 90 minutes. The way is lone 30 miles, but determination are 17 stations arsenic you walk done the North York Moors nationalist park. At Battersby, the operator swaps ends, arsenic the bid does a switchback. Names specified arsenic Kildale, Commondale and Castleton Moor supply an penetration into the benignant of scenery to expect arsenic you travel the people of the River Esk, portion astatine Grosmont you mightiness drawback a glimpse of the much touristy steam train.
Roy Messenger

Unruly wilderness, the West Highland line

Heavy snowfall  astatine  Corrour connected  the West Highland Line.
Heavy snowfall astatine Corrour connected the West Highland Line. Photograph: Iain Masterton/Alamy

A person and I took the bid from Glasgow to Mallaig for a abbreviated travel successful February. The bid is an older exemplary and the conductor wandered down the aisles, cheerfully greeting customers helium recognised, and those helium didn’t. The travel began with the enactment passing done concern estates and residential areas but yet the buildings stopped and we began to climb. We passed implicit icy lochs and snow-covered conifer forests, each held beneath a moody, threatening winter’s sky. The upwind whipped astir the train, particularly higher up, sending flurries of snowfall with it. After the pavements of Glasgow for the past fewer months it was a portion of unruly wilderness – and magnificent.

Ancient hills and reddish kites, Swansea to Shrewsbury

Cynghordy Viaduct, betwixt  Llandovery and Llanwrtyd Wells
Cynghordy Viaduct, betwixt Llandovery and Llanwrtyd Wells Photograph: Harry Williams/Alamy

The Heart of Wales enactment runs betwixt Swansea and Shrewsbury. Many of its stations nexus to the caller long-distance walking trail, the Heart of Wales enactment trail, allowing you to hop connected and disconnected and locomotion betwixt stations. The way encompasses winding stream valleys, chaotic forests and Cambrian mountains. Highlights see viaducts astatine Knucklas and Cynghordy, and the magnificent Sugar Loaf mountain. Alight astatine Llanwrtyd for a spot of bog snorkelling oregon to spot the reddish kites; sojourn Llandrindod’s Victorian just successful August. Or simply beryllium backmost and bask the glorious scenery.
M Ashley

Castles and crags, Germany

Village of Kamp-Bornhofen connected  the Rhine southbound  of Koblenz.
Village of Kamp-Bornhofen connected the Rhine southbound of Koblenz. Photograph: Charles O Cecil/Alamy

My favourite bid thrust is the 38-mile agelong that follows the Rhine from Bingen to Koblenz done its magnificent gorge. Castles, crags, forests and fortresses tower supra you circular each crook successful the river. Medieval robber barons fought for power of the stream road and Lorelei (a steep slate rock) lured fishermen to their deaths connected the rocks with her siren song. You’ll look harmless from your carriage successful nether an hour, but changed everlastingly by your travel backmost done time. Regular trains tally regular and a summons costs astir €15 1 way.
Susanna Callaghan

Rural beauty, Ireland

Countryside adjacent  to the way   of the Dublin to Galway railway line.
Countryside adjacent to the way of the Dublin to Galway railway line. Photograph: Andy Goss/Alamy

The bid from Dublin to Galway takes you close crossed the loop of the emerald isle. Moody hills beryllium connected the horizon, with the upwind creating an ever-changing landscape. It mightiness beryllium raining and grey outside, but you tin bask Ireland’s agrarian quality from the comfortableness of a bid carriage. There’s adjacent a snack cart, selling bully blistery Irish beverage and packets of biscuits to assistance walk the 2½-hour journey. Galway presumption is successful the bosom of this tiny city, and a stone’s propulsion from An Púcán, a large halt for a Guinness erstwhile waiting for your instrumentality train. Catch the Galway work from Dublin Heuston. An unfastened instrumentality costs €52.10.

A travel done history, Dresden to Budapest

Budapest’s eastbound   railway station.
Budapest’s eastbound railway station. Photograph: Geza Kurka/Alamy

Leave Dresden successful the morning, arsenic the travel takes astir 9 hours. You volition beryllium treated to a assortment of landscapes, from the vale of the Elbe to the mountains successful the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the level vale of the Danube. The bid stops much than 10 times, including Prague and Bratislava. The rolling banal is simply a substance of carriages from antithetic countries and eras, including astatine slightest 1 from communist times, with signs successful respective languages. Walk on the bid to comparison eating arrangements and summons prices, and beryllium amazed by the assortment of restaurants and bars connected board. You’ll get successful Budapest successful clip for dinner.

Colourful villages, Cinque Terre, Italy

Manarola, Cinque Terre.
Manarola, Cinque Terre. Photograph: Julia Lavrinenko/Alamy

Seeing the Cinque Terre by train, starting successful Levanto, is perchance the champion mode to acquisition the 5 colourful villages connected the Italian coast. An big Cinque Terre paper costs €7.50 and allows unlimited question betwixt the villages. You tin besides hike betwixt Monterosso and Vernazza and past connected to Corniglia. Although wherefore locomotion erstwhile you tin bask the sites from the train? I peculiarly enjoyed a citrus and basil sorbet successful Corniglia.
Rachel Elizabeth

Worth waking up for, Milan to Vienna

Nightjet, Vienna
Photograph: Lisi Niesner/Reuters

The Nightjet sleeper train from Milan to Vienna is not cheap, but the two-person sleeper accommodation is comfy and the early-morning conception of the travel crossed the spectacular viaducts of Semmering Pass is simply a never-to-be-forgotten experience. Arrival astatine Vienna’s main railway terminus earlier 9am allows a afloat day’s sightseeing and java drinking successful that fabulous city. From €50pp.