by Katherine Alex Beaven / © 2019, Oyster.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
Traveling by train can be a romantic way to see the world. Since it was one of the original forms of mass transit worldwide, hundreds of pre-existing rail lines offer access to more remote areas. Here are some fantastic train trips to add to your travel bucket list.
1. Qinghai-Tibet Railway
Where it goes: Xining to Lhasa
How long it takes: 20 hours and 55 minutes
Why not start with the world’s highest train ride? The Qinghai-Tibet Railway climbs to heart-thumping heights of over 16,000 feet as it snakes through the Himalayas. The gorgeous 1,215-mile journey only makes seven stops as it passes through four different biomes. Booking between April and November bodes for better weather, though the stunning views of grasslands, wetlands, mountains and deserts are always breathtaking.
Where it goes: London to/from Paris
How long it takes: Two hours and 15 minutes
Eurostar is a popular way for folks to get from London to Paris (or vice versa), thanks to its quick travel time, but it has another draw that makes it a great bucket-list train trip. For 20 minutes, you’ll actually be riding 150 feet underwater through the famed English Channel. Trains leave from St. Pancras/King’s Cross in London and arrive in Gare du Nord [in Paris].
3. Orient Express
Where it goes: Paris to Istanbul (original route)
The Orient Express is one of the most famous train journeys in history, with movies and murder- mystery novels undoubtedly adding to its mystery and intrigue. In its early decades, the Orient Express was the epitome of luxury travel, with high society and royalty riding its rails. Many people believe the name references a certain train, but it actually refers to a train route. You can still ride its original route—all of which is included in a Eurail Global Pass.
4. Trans-Siberian Railway
Where it goes: Moscow to Vladivostok
How long it takes: Seven days
The Trans-Siberian Railway is another historically famous railroad that should be on your bucket list. It’s also the world’s longest continuous railway, clocking in at 5,772 miles from Moscow to Vladivostok, [Russia]—that’s about a third of the way around the world. Along the way, you’ll pass through eight times zones and have plenty of time to see the beautiful Russian countryside.
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