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Iconic train journeys of the world

Discover the world in the most awe-inspiring, romantic, sophisticated, comfortable and panoramic way possible, through the unparalleled magic of rail travel with Great Rail Journeys.

Discover classic train journeys

Travelling by rail grants a unique insight into the beauty, culture and history of a nation like no other form of transport can. From the windows of your carriage, experience spectacular views and glorious panoramas as you glide through magnificent countries across the globe, seeing the finest sights they have to offer. On a Great Rail Journey, the journey becomes part of the destination.

Along with the diverse charm of rail travel, there are a number of magnificent iconic rail journeys which should feature on the bucket lists of every discerning traveller. 

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The glamorous, enchanting Trans-Siberian Express crosses across the dramatic Russian landscape to China, the mysterious Venice-Simplon-Orient plots a course of intrigue and romance from Venice to Paris and the stunning Ghan journeys through the majesty of the Australian outback. Shorter rail adventures have much to offer, with Switzerland offering what are widely regarded as the most striking railways in Europe with the Glacier Express, the Jungfrau Railway and the Bernina Express. On our own shores, the Jacobite Steam Train is one of Scotland's most cinematic attractions, while in Wales, the mystical mountains and deep green valleys are on full display on the Welsh Highland Railway, through the Snowdonia National Park.

United Kingdom

At Great Rail Journeys, our love for trains and rail travel has made us the UK's leading operators in escorted rail holidays. We provide holidays across the world, incorporating some of the most magnificent and memorable rail journeys in a myriad of colourful countries. Take a look below at just some of the rail adventures and iconic train journeys we offer.

From breathtaking Highland mountain scenery to the dramatic Yorkshire Dales, rail journeys in the UK take passengers through some of the world's finest landscapes. There are also a number of popular heritage railways, where vintage steam engines and carriages transport tourists into a glorious bygone age of travel.

jacobite steam train on glennfinnan viaduct

The Jacobite Train

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Scotland excels at scenic railway journeys, and the route taken by the  Jacobite Steam Train along part of the West Highland Railway and the Mallaig Extension Railway is widely regarded as one of the finest.

Europe and Russia

Some of the world's most famous and iconic railway journeys can be found in mainland Europe and Russia - from the pioneering engineering feat of the Jungfrau Railway to the lavish Trans-Siberian Express and Venice Simplon-Orient-Express.

Golden Eagle Trans-Siberian Express

Golden Eagle Trans-Siberian Express

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By popular consensus, travelling the legendary  Trans-Siberian Railway is both a once-in-a-lifetime experience and the greatest rail journey in the world. The route, from  Moscow to  Vladivostok, spans 9,288 kilometres and typically takes at least eight days to complete.

The Venice Simplon Orient Express

The Venice Simplon Orient Express

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Immortalised in popular culture and renowned for its impeccable standards of service the iconic  Venice Simplon-Orient-Express is almost certainly one of the world's most famous  luxury trains.

Africa

Passengers can discover the fantastic scenery and attractions of Namibia on the spectacular Pride of Africa luxury service, or experience South Africa's highlights on the wonderful Blue Train - one of the world's most opulent trains. Travelling by private train is easily the best way to discover the many charms of this delightful continent.

Blue train

The Blue Train

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The Blue Train lives up to its reputation for magnificence and splendour, offering its passengers a luxurious on-board experience that they will never forget. 

Pride of Africa

The Pride of Africa

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Operated by the private, family-run Rovos Rail, the elegant  Pride of Africa lives up to its name and is described by its operator as "the world's most luxurious train".

Australasia

The superb landscapes of Australia and New Zealand are both best explored by train, and both countries offer some of the true great railway journeys of the world - such as the fabulous Ghan, which travels through the beautiful centre of Australia.

The Ghan

The Ghan

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Australia's  Afghan Express, now affectionately referred to as  The Ghan, offers Great Rail Journeys' guests an epic travel experience through this remarkable country.

Asia

Asia offers some of the world's truly iconic railway journeys, which take in the continent's magnificent sights and rich cultural heritage. With luxury hotel trains such as the Palace on Wheels and Eastern & Oriental Express, rail journeys in Asia are a wonderful, unforgettable experience.

Bullet train Japan

The Bullet Trains

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Shinkansen refers to the dedicated high-speed Japanese rail network that provides a link to most major cities on the islands of Honshu and Kyushu. The name 'Shinkansen' is also used to refer to the trains that run on the network - which are perhaps better known as  'Bullet Trains'.

North & South America

Both the USA and Canada boast fantastic trains that take passengers through the stunning scenery of these wonderfully diverse countries. With trains such as the Rocky Mountaineer and the California Zephyr, passengers can head from city centres to sweeping valleys, rocky gorges and impressive mountain ranges.

Rocky Mountaineer train

The Rocky Mountaineer

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Operating on four spectacular routes throughout Canada, the  Rocky Mountaineer offers a unique and instantly memorable journey through one of the most beautiful countries in the world.

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