Pages in category: Journeys

European Rail News
published on 25 March 2015
We look at the revised timings of Russian Railways' Paris-Berlin-Moscow service which will from mid-June 2015 depart Paris Gare d'Est station at 20.05, creating a new overnight option between Paris and Berlin.
published on 14 November 2014
Each issue of the new European Rail Timetable contains a Route of the Month. These are texts, which highlight the particular appeal of one selected European rail route.
published on 18 August 2013
Is Elipsos nearing the end of the line? In late 2012, The Spanish rail operator cut its routes to Italy and Switzerland. What remains are two night train routes: from Barcelona and Madrid to Paris. And with upcoming competition from fast TGV daytime services from Paris to Barcelona, we wonder if Elipsos' days are numbered.
published on 24 March 2013
Long before anyone had even heard of Eurostar, the British Rail Board (BRB) published a series of indicative timetables for a possible Channel Tunnel rail service linking London with Paris. We reproduce here what we believe is the first iteration of that timetable, released 40 years ago in 1973.
published on 28 January 2013
Amsterdam certainly pulls the crowds and for travellers using InterRail (and Eurail passes) a stop in Amsterdam has become almost a rite of passage. For young travellers from Britain in particular, Amsterdam ranks as an almost compulsory early stop on any round-Europe rail tour. We suggest here an onward journey from Amsterdam south towards Cologne that offers a chance to see the rural landscapes of the Netherlands and nearby parts of Germany.
published on 27 January 2013
If you are bound for Amsterdam from London or Paris and are travelling just for fun, might we suggest an alternative to the fast Thalys connection? Make for Lille and then follow our rural itinerary on through Belgian Flanders and Dutch Zeeland. This route takes in lowland landscapes that inspired Flemish and Dutch artists.
published on 11 October 2011
The railway platform at Tirana was as full as it ever gets. That meant all of half a dozen people waiting for the dawn train to Pogradec, among them an English gricer and a Polish twitcher. The latter had travelled across Europe to catch a glimpse of rare birds and was bound for Lake Ohrid.
published on 20 September 2011
Travelling across the North European Plain, a vast sweep of two-dimensional terrain that extends from Brussels to Berlin and beyond, travellers might well give thanks for whatever modest hills punctuate their journey. The Harz Mountains barely rise to more than one thousand metres, but seen from the flatlands to the north they appear mightily impressive: great, forested humpbacks that preside over the plains. The highest point is the Brocken, at 1,141 metres the loftiest elevation anywhere in northern Germany.
published on 13 July 2011
Platform Four in Tallinn station: the train to Narva rests in the sunshine. An odd selection of shopping bags, magazines and items of clothing scattered on plastic seats are evidence of people having made a claim on a particular space on the train. One person has left an umbrella, another a melon and a third seat is occupied by a plastic chimpanzee. Their respective owners stand on the platform until it is evident that the train is about to depart.
published on 29 May 2011
You could easily miss Elton. The train from Dublin to Cork speeds past Elton. You hardly catch a glimpse of the cluster of houses that make up this little Irish village. When the grandly titled Great Southern and Western Railway built a line through the district in 1849, they judged Knocklong, just a couple of minutes up the line from Elton, as deserving of a station. So Elton, a little smaller than Knocklong, lost out.
published on 6 May 2011
Are not the finest parts of many long train journeys those fleeting glimpses of a city or a country that you get just prior to arrival at your destination? There is a superb moment on the train journey through Slovakia towards Budapest, a view dominated by the huge basilica at Esztergom.
published on 25 March 2011
"April is the cruellest month," wrote TS Eliot. Not so in southern Sweden, where March can be much crueller than April. This is the season when winter's icy hold on forests and lakes is challenged by slowly rising temperatures. Thick lake ice turns to milky cream, while the thaw makes forests utterly impenetrable.
published on 28 February 2011
Chernivtsi's distinctive green-domed railway station gives a hint of the city it serves. It is a stylish station, one that well befits what is a gem among Ukrainian cities. Of course, for many travellers Chernivtsi is merely a place to change trains. There are connections far and wide. But the most interesting train of the day from Chernivtsi is the morning train to Moldova.
published on 1 February 2011
It takes less than four hours to cross Macedonia by train. It is just 250 km from the border with Serbia at Tabanovce to the Greek frontier at Gevgelija. Of course Macedonia deserves more than merely four hours, but that short train journey affords a few insights into one of Europe's least known countries.
published on 6 January 2011
If you like three dimensional landscapes, then Germany's most northerly state of Schleswig-Holstein is probably not for you. The hills are there, but you have to look hard to see them. We took a local train across Schleswig-Holstein last Sunday on a route that happily included the Rendsburg bridge.