Guide to train travel and travel by rail, including train trip holiday advice, iconic rail journeys like the Trans-Siberian Express, the Orient Express and more
Of course, some trains are more interesting to spot than others. South America has some great ones: the Devil’s Nose is Ecuador’s most hair-raising, a series of perilously steep switchbacks through the mountains, while Peru has a ride that goes even higher – the Lima to Huancayo ride boasts a station in excess of 4,780m, and oxygen is piped into the carriages. You can even explore the Amazon by rail: hop on Brazil’s Madeira to Mamore line.
In North America most locals prefer cars and planes, which leaves the terrific trains free for travellers. Clear-domed viewing carriages open up views of New Mexican desert, Californian coast and Louisiana bayou, with rail passes making these a great-value ride.
In Europe the train is king – while old-school Orient Express glamour will cost a small fortune, you can still make the iconic trip across the continent to Istanbul on regular services (with stop-offs in Vienna, Budapest and Belgrade) for much less. And countries such as Switzerland are so set up for train travel – including mountain funiculars and scenic rail masterpieces – you wouldn’t explore any other way.
Leaving Europe by train can be done on the epic Trans-Siberian Railway, on which it’s a six-day trundle to Beijing, China – another country where the railways are the prime way to get around (if you can decipher the signs). There are some classic train trips to take in the rest of Asia too: don’t miss India’s immense rail network, or the slick services from Bangkok to Singapore.
Australian train trips are all about scale – with the longest stretch of straight track in the world (a section of the epic Perth to Sydney journey), this is the place to be blown away by the wonder of nothing. Just bring a good book, a bottle of Aussie red and watch the world chug by.
You voted it one of your favourite emerging destinations in our Reader Travel Awards. Here, Melanie Stern shares her reasons for crossing the plains and heading off-track in beguiling Bolivia More
One of Europe’s oldest cities is fast becoming one of its hottest short break spots. Beauty, history, a lot of wine – what’s not to love, asks Lyn Hughes… More
From the mountains to the sea, Spain offers a rich variety of landscapes to challenge and reward active travellers and nature lovers. The food isn’t too bad, either More
From boutique vineyards to wildlife-rich islands, South Australia is a dream destination to explore. Discover the top 10 things to do in Adelaide and beyond... More
You voted the Scottish Highlands as your favourite UK destination. Author Simon Varwell reveals the Highland railways stations hardly anyone gets off at - and why everyone should More
Swing with chimps in the Ugandan jungle, spot tiger from the water in India, and sleep under the stars in Cambodia. Discover the newest ways to encounter the most amazing creatures on our planet… More
Trek Croatia's crowd-free trails, embark on a classic road trip in USA, and cruise Italy's Aeolian Islands. There’s the perfect epic adventure for you out there – whether by foot, wheel, rail or sail... More
Turkey is exotic, exciting and very affordable. From the aqua-blue waters of the east to the ancient towns of the west, the time to visit is now... More
You flocked to the Wanderlust website in your millions in 2018, but which features, interviews, lists and reviews did you love the most? These 20 came out on top... More
From saving a species to expanding your skills (and your mind), there’s always a good reason to get away – and if you can’t think of one, read on as we round up the trips that may change your life… More
Paddle the lakes in summer, marvel at amber trees in autumn and skate your way through winter – adventure is guaranteed in the Great White North no matter which day, month or season you choose to visit More
From the coast to the Highlands, from London to the lochs, these spectacular rail journeys prove that there is no better way to explore Scotland’s breathtaking scenery than by train More
Add a little zing to your holidays in 2019. From zesty culinary tours and epic Mayan adventures, to cycling through the sleepy corners of the Yucatán, these trips are sure to get the fiesta started More
From rafting cool water under the summer sun to hiking, island-hopping and skiing during the cooler months, Greece offers a world of wild escapes… More
Taiwan is a sprawling but intriguing mass of temples and treasures. Hop on board its rail transport links that make it easier than ever to explore... More
The rarest travel experiences. The toughest. The dearest. The ones that won’t be around forever. These are the real do-before-you-die journeys... More
A land of rumbling volcanoes, wildlife wonders, Amazonian jungle and epic coasts – it's a wonder how you can cram in everything that Ecuador and the Galápagos Islands has to offer. Follow our guide... More
Charming coastal views, jaw-dropping viaducts and National Park peaks – there's adventure around every corner on these unforgettable UK train journeys More
Drive the ice roads of Canada, take the North-west passage or travel by train under the Northern Lights of Norway. Take your lead from the great explorers and create a polar journey to remember... More
Wanderlust subscribers now receive a free £50 voucher valid on trips from a great selection of top tour operators
And the best bit is, this isn't a one-off offer, you get one every time you renew as well!
The £50 discount can be redeemed against one trip booking with one of our tour operator partners, by the expiry date printed on the voucher. The £50 can even be redeemed on top of any discounts our partners are already offering, ensuring Wanderlust subscribers get the best deal possible.
Simply quote your unique voucher code when booking to claim the discount. This offer is only available to Wanderlust subscribers.
UK subscribers automatically receive the voucher each year. Overseas subscribers receive it upon request.
India wildlife tour to the most famous tiger sanctuary in India. This bespoke tiger safari with the best local guides lets you get under the skin of Ranthambhore with 7 jeep safaris.
15 day Rocky Mountaineer rail and Alaska cruise from £2,699 per person including flights, rail, cruise and mixed meal plan. Highlights: Inside Passage, Mendenhall Glacier, Juneau Icefields, Banff
Get a true taste of the diversity of Vietnam with an exploration of its bustling cities, rural village life and lush jungles, in this dizzying dash through the country’s highlights.
This unforgettable journey, from Almaty in Kazakhstan to Ashgabat in Turkmenistan introduces the manifold cultures along the legendary Silk Road and the numerous ancient landmarks that mark the rou...
A classic 14-night adventure introducing the traditional side of Japan, from Japanese-style inns to time-honoured cuisine and ancient temples.
Peru Trip Advisors
Take a fascinating journey trhough the Peruvian Inca's history, ending it with an adventure at the endless greenest of the Amazon junglle.
From: £Contact us
Choose one of our fixed departure Trans-Siberian Railway tours including sightseeing in Moscow, Lake Baikal and the Mongolian steppe. Taking in the very best of the Trans-Mongolian, this is itinera...
A two week trip taking in the colonial capital of Quito, a luxurious Amazon river cruise and iconic train journey from Andes to Coast.
Best Served Scandinavia
This comprehensive itinerary combines rail, road and cruise to take in the best of northern Norway. You’ll cross the Arctic Circle on a fjord-side railway, explore spectacular island archipelagos a...
This luxury Trans-Siberian Railway small group tour carries travellers along the tracks of Siberia's famous railroad when the wild expanses of this sparsely-populated land are at their most extreme...
Get off the beaten track in central India without leaving the comfort of the luxurious Deccan Odyssey train. Also explore the bustling metropolis of Mumbai before unwinding in the peaceful state of...
From: £Contact us
One of the most iconic railway journeys in the world, travel from Moscow to Beijing in style aboard the luxury Tsar's Gold private train. As the ever-changing landscapes of Russia, Mongolia and Chi...
The Maharajas Express is the latest word in luxury train travel in India. In a country renowned for its majestic opulence, this palace on wheels is the perfect way to experience the many sights and...
This unforgettable journey, from Ashgabat in Turkmenistan to Almaty in Kazakhstan introduces the manifold cultures along the legendary Silk Road and the numerous ancient landmarks that mark the rou...
From: £Contact us
Take the legendary Trans-Siberian and Trans-Mongolian Railways from Russia to Beijing via serene Lake Baikal and the wild expanses of Mongolia. This extended tour includes a stop in the historic ci...
From: £Contact us
Travel from Moscow to Beiing aboard a luxury, private Imperial Train stopping in the grand Siberian cities of Kazan, Yekaterinburg and Novosibirsk. Enjoy a picnic on the shores of Lake Baikal, disc...
Trace the footsteps of the Inca and traverse the Andes aboard South America's first luxury sleeper train.
Moscow in winter is nothing short of iconic. The immense historic buildings and squares wear a thick white coat of snow and travellers and locals alike shuffle past, wrapped up in furs to keep the ...
From: £Contact us
Travel on this luxury private Imperial Train from Moscow to Vladivostok stopping off in grand Siberian cities such Kazan, Yekaterinburg and Novosibirsk. Picnic by the side of Lake Baikal and dare t...
Take in some of the highlights of South America in Peru and Bolivia. Discover Machu Picchu and mystical Lake Titicaca, as well as exploring some of the most atmospheric cities in the Andes.
Discover the main highlights of north India & Rajasthan on board the characterful and charming Palace on Wheels train.
Cox & Kings Travel
Starting and finishing in Mumbai, this journey explores some of mainland India's best-kept secrets aboard the luxurious Deccan Odyssey. Discover the fascinating history of the Deccan through the ou...
Cox & Kings Travel
Travelling the 4,352km (2,698 miles) between Perth and Sydney, a journey on Indian Pacific is one of the world’s great rail adventures. Departing Perth, the train climbs through the scenic Avon v...
Travel on one of the world's greatest rail journeys, starting in Beijing, crossing the Gobi desert and the vast Siberian plains, finishing in Moscow - or vice versa.
Travel along the world longest railway journey visiting some of Russia's highlights including St Petersburg, Moscow and Lake Baikal as well as Mongolia's capital, Ulaan Bataar.
Journey across Europe from Venice to London on the iconic Venice Simplon-Orient-Express.
Trace the footsteps of the Inca as you traverse the Andes aboard South America's first luxury sleeper train.
A luxurious trip combining Cape Town, a Rovos Rail train journey to Pretoria and a Big Five Safari in a private reserve bordering the Kruger National Park.
Cox & Kings Travel
Often viewed as the ultimate rail journey, this 16-day itinerary along the Trans-Siberian Railway aboard the Tsar’s Gold will take you from the majesty of the Red Square in Moscow, through the remo...