Train Travel, ideal for independent travelers
Train Travel is a great way of transport for independent travelers. It is fast, comfortable, and it gives the opportunity to watch the landscape passing by. In almost every aspect, it outperforms using airplanes or buses.
SleepingOne of the main advantages of train travel is the possibility to sleep underway. When you are short in time, or when the trip is long or dull, you simply combine the travelling time with the time you need to rest. Although the budget way of doing this is simply by sleeping on a normal train, it will not be very comfortable. Instead, sleeping trains are available almost everywhere.
Hard or softsleepersIn many countries, different types of sleeping trains are available. Open compartments or closed cabins, with 2 beds where you can sit on the lower bed, or with 2 or even 3 beds where sitting is impossible once the beds are made. Comfortable mattresses or hard wooden bunks, anything is possible.
Unfortunately, the naming of a train service are not very consistent. Hard sleepers in China, for instance, are comfortable but noisy because of the open compartment. Hard sleepers in Vietnam, however, are really hard, and not comfortable at all. So be sure which type of sleeping train offers exactly what, so you can decide which one to take.
Discount train passesTrain travel from city to city can be quite expensive. Luckily, in some continents or countries discount train passes are available for travelling around for a few weeks:
Eurail - In Europe, the discount passes are offered by a company called Eurail. They offer different passes, for different regions in Europe. It is even possible to choose 3 countries in which to travel for a fixed price.
Amtrak Pass - The best way to tour USA in luxury, or simply to get you from A to B, suitable for families and individuals alike.
Australian Pass - From the far north to the outback region: from Sydney to Perth to Alice Springs and using famous trains like 'The Queenslander', 'The Indian Pacific' and 'The Ghan'.
Canrail Pass - Canada Rail has proven itself to be one of the ultimate forms of rail travel in the world. Let the luxury sleeper touring trains make your stay in Canada.
Japan Rail - Explore Japan in style with the various available rail passes.
Scanrail - Scandinavia in complete freedom - travel around Denmark, Finland, Norway & Sweden by rail...as you like, when you like!
UK Rail - This serves all of your rail needs in the United Kingdom.
These are just a selection of train travel passes available in different regions. Search for these terms or your destination plus train pass on Google to find more information.
Special TrainsAnd then, there are the special trains. From those, we took the Trans Siberian Express. But we didn't book the official trip upfront, we bought local tickets instead, saving lots of money.
Other famous train rides include:
But it are often the unexpected train travel trips that make the most impression, like our trip on the Cambodian Train.
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