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Exploring the World's Most Breathtaking Train Journeys

Embarking on a scenic train journey is not just about reaching a destination; it's about slowing down and enjoying the beauty of the journey itself. For families seeking unforgettable adventures, it's worth considering enjoying some of the most scenic train routes in the world. From traversing the majestic Swiss Alps to winding through the rugged landscapes of the Canadian Rockies, these train journeys promise awe-inspiring views and unparalleled experiences for travelers of all ages.



Glacier Express, Switzerland: A Magical Alpine Adventure


Image courtesy of Glacier Express


Switzerland's Glacier Express is often dubbed the "world's slowest express train," and for good reason—it's a journey meant to be savored. Departing from the picturesque village of Zermatt and winding its way to St. Moritz, this iconic route takes passengers on a mesmerizing ride through the heart of the Swiss Alps. Along the way, families are treated to panoramic views of snow-capped peaks, quaint alpine villages, and lush valleys dotted with grazing cows. Be sure to keep an eye out for the legendary Matterhorn, whose majestic silhouette dominates the skyline.


Travel Time: 8 hours


For more information, visit their website


Image courtesy of Glacier Express



Rocky Mountaineer, Canada: Nature's Masterpiece Unveiled


Image courtesy of Rocky Mountaineer


For families craving adventure amidst untamed wilderness, Canada's Rocky Mountaineer offers an unparalleled experience. Departing from Vancouver or Calgary, this world-renowned train travels on several different routes to take passengers deep into the heart of the Canadian Rockies, where towering peaks, emerald lakes, and cascading waterfalls await. Kids will delight in spotting wildlife such as bears, elk, and eagles from the comfort of their plush seats, while parents can unwind and soak in the breathtaking scenery. With a range of routes and customizable itineraries, the Rocky Mountaineer is the perfect choice for families seeking adventure without sacrificing comfort.


Travel Time: 3+ nights depending on route


For more information, visit their website


Image courtesy of Rocky Mountaineer



The Flam Railway, Norway: A Fairy Tale Come to Life


Image courtesy of Norway's best


Norway's Flam Railway is a journey straight out of a fairy tale, transporting passengers through some of the most enchanting landscapes in Scandinavia. Starting from the tiny fjord village of Flam, the train climbs steeply through lush green valleys, past thundering waterfalls, and alongside serene fjords. As the train ascends to the mountain station of Myrdal, families are treated to panoramic views of snow-capped peaks and emerald forests stretching as far as the eye can see. With its charming wooden carriages and friendly atmosphere, the Flam Railway is sure to capture the hearts of young and old alike.


Travel Time: 1-2 hours


For more information, visit their website


Image courtesy of Norway's best



The Ghan, Australia: Crossing the Outback in Style


Photo courtesy of Journey Beyond Rail


For families seeking a truly epic adventure, Australia's Ghan offers a journey across the vast and rugged Outback. Departing from Adelaide and traversing the heart of the continent to Darwin (or vice versa), this legendary train journey showcases the diverse landscapes and rich cultural heritage of Australia's Red Centre. From the rusty red deserts of central Australia to the lush tropical savannahs of the Northern Territory, the Ghan offers a fascinating glimpse into the country's unique and untamed wilderness. With comfortable accommodations, onboard entertainment, and immersive off-train excursions, the Ghan is the ultimate family adventure Down Under.


Travel Time: 4 days


For more information, visit their website


Photo courtesy of Journey Beyond Rail



The White Pass and Yukon Route, Alaska/Canada: A Frontier Expedition


Photo courtesy of White Pass & Yukon Route Railway


Alaska's White Pass and Yukon Route is a historic railway that offers families the chance to step back in time and experience the rugged beauty of the Last Frontier. Departing from the port town of Skagway, the train climbs steep grades and winds through narrow mountain passes, offering breathtaking views of glaciers, waterfalls, and towering peaks. Along the way, families can learn about the region's rich gold rush history and marvel at the engineering feats that made this remote railway possible. With its vintage steam locomotives and open-air observation platforms, the White Pass and Yukon Route is a thrilling adventure for families seeking a taste of the wild North.


Travel Time: 2.5 hours + depending on route


For more information, visit their website


Photo courtesy of White Pass & Yukon Route Railway



Trans-Siberian Railway, Russia: A Journey Across the Russian Landscape


Photo courtesy of Golden Eagle Luxury Trains Limited


The Trans-Siberian Railway is not just a train journey; it's an odyssey across the vast expanse of Russia, connecting Moscow in the west to Vladivostok in the east. Families embarking on this epic adventure will traverse nearly 6,000 miles of diverse landscapes, from the dense forests of Siberia to the rolling steppes of Mongolia. Along the way, kids can marvel at the changing scenery outside their window, spot Siberian wildlife, and learn about the cultures and traditions of the regions they pass through. With comfortable accommodations and onboard amenities, the Trans-Siberian Railway offers families a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to explore the world's largest country in unparalleled comfort and style.


Travel Time: 15 days


For more information, visit their website


Photo courtesy of Golden Eagle Luxury Trains Limited



The Bernina Express, Switzerland/Italy: Alpine Splendor


Photo courtesy of Switzerland Tourism


The Bernina Express is a masterpiece of Swiss engineering, taking passengers on a breathtaking journey from Chur in Switzerland to Tirano in Italy. Crossing the Bernina Pass at over 7,000 feet above sea level, this scenic route offers panoramic views of glaciers, lakes, and charming alpine villages nestled amidst the mountains. Families will marvel at the train's dramatic ascent and descent, passing through spiral tunnels, over towering viaducts, and alongside glistening glaciers. With its comfortable seating, large windows, and informative commentary, the Bernina Express is the perfect choice for families seeking adventure and natural beauty in the heart of the Alps.


Travel Time: 4-8 hours


For more information, visit their website


Photo courtesy of Switzerland Tourism



TranzAlpine, New Zealand: A Journey Through the Southern Alps


Photo courtesy of Great Journeys New Zealand


New Zealand's trains offer families the chance to explore some of the country's most stunning coastal scenery aboard a scenic train journey. One of the most famous train journeys in New Zealand is the TranzAlpine, which traverses the stunning Southern Alps between Christchurch and Greymouth on the West Coast.


Apart from the TranzAlpine, there are other notable scenic train journeys in New Zealand, such as the Coastal Pacific, which runs along the east coast of the South Island, showcasing breathtaking coastal scenery. Additionally, there's the Northern Explorer, which travels between Auckland and Wellington, passing through the volcanic plateau of the North Island. With its comfortable seating, panoramic windows, and friendly atmosphere, these train routes are a family-friendly adventure that showcase the best of New Zealand's natural wonders.


Travel Time: 6+ hours depending on route


For more information, visit their website


Photo courtesy of Great Journeys New Zealand



The West Highland Line, Scotland: A Highland Adventure


Photo courtesy of Visit Scotland


Scotland's West Highland Line is a journey through some of the most dramatic and breathtaking landscapes in the British Isles. Departing from Glasgow, the train winds its way northward through the scenic West Highlands, passing by shimmering lochs, misty mountains, and ancient castles along the way. Families will marvel at the rugged beauty of the Scottish countryside, as well as the rich history and folklore of the Highlands. With its cozy interiors, traditional Scottish hospitality, and onboard dining options featuring local cuisine, the West Highland Line offers families a truly immersive and unforgettable Scottish adventure.


Travel Time: 4 days


For more information, visit their website


Photo courtesy of Visit Scotland



The Blue Train, South Africa: Luxury Safari on Rails


Photo courtesy of The Blue Train


For families seeking a touch of luxury and adventure, South Africa's Blue Train offers a safari experience like no other. Departing from Pretoria and traveling to Cape Town (or vice versa), this iconic train journey takes passengers through some of South Africa's most spectacular landscapes, including sweeping savannahs, rolling vineyards, and stark desert plains. Along the way, families can relax in opulent suites, enjoy gourmet meals inspired by local flavors, and embark on off-train excursions to explore the country's rich cultural heritage and abundant wildlife. With its unparalleled comfort, impeccable service, and breathtaking scenery, the Blue Train is the ultimate choice for families seeking a safari adventure with a touch of old-world elegance.


Travel Time: 6 hours


For more information, visit their website


Photo courtesy of The Blue Train





Embarking on a scenic train journey is not just a means of transportation—it's an immersive experience that allows families to connect with each other and with the natural world in a way that few other modes of travel can match. Whether winding through the Swiss Alps, crossing the rugged landscapes of the Canadian Rockies, or exploring the untamed wilderness of Alaska, these scenic train routes promise unforgettable adventures and cherished memories that will last a lifetime. So pack your bags, hop aboard, and let the journey begin!

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