Top 15 Most Scenic Train Rides In The World

16-11-2022 15 9 0 0 Báo lỗi

Train travel is one of the oldest modes of transportation, and the thought of a journey on the rails conjures up images of the past. Despite popular belief, most trains are modern, fast, and efficient modes of transportation. Some of the scenic rides described here were designed primarily to transport passengers through beautiful, possibly inaccessible locations. Others connect cities and towns, with downtown stations and frequent schedules replacing air travel for shorter trips. The beauty of the interior décor on some trains rivals that of the passing scenery. Many train stations are destinations in their own right, complete with art, vintage architecture, gourmet dining, and classic cocktail bars. Let's discover the most scenic train rides in the world.

1 Thu Bui

Rocky Mountaineer

There are four different rail routes that the Canadian Rocky Mountaineer runs along, each one more picturesque than the last. The route offers breathtaking views of forests, fields, peaks, and valleys as it passes through the Rocky Mountains that separate British Columbia and Alberta. The GoldLeaf service, which offers 360-degree views from a glass-domed double-level train car, is possibly their most well-liked offering. There is even a viewing area outside that is ideal for breathing in the clean mountain air.


One of the most beautiful train rides in Canada is the Rocky Mountaineer's First Passage to the West, which travels through the breathtaking scenery of southern British Columbia between Vancouver and Banff. Passengers are treated to spectacular sights from the comfort of luxurious carriages as they depart the urban coastal city of Vancouver, including the raging waters of Hell's Gate in Fraser Canyon and the steep tracks running alongside the Thompson River. After spending the night in the lakeside city of Kamloops, the journey begins. From there, it ascends over the Canadian Rockies and ends in blissful Banff.


Country: Canada

ROCKY MOUNTAINEER
ROCKY MOUNTAINEER
theculturetrip.com
theculturetrip.com
2 Thu Bui

Glacier Express

The Glacier Express train travels through the Swiss Alps between Zermatt and St. Moritz, Switzerland, providing breathtaking views of mountains, streams, and charming towns.


The journey begins in the mountain village of Zermatt, close to the Matterhorn, and proceeds past rocky peaks before crossing the Rhone and entering the Upper Rhone Valley. The highest point of the journey is the Oberalp Pass, the source of the Rhine River, at almost 7,000 feet. The Rhine Gorge, also known as the "Swiss Grand Canyon," is one of the trip's most impressive sights as the train continues to descend along the Rhine Valley. Eight hours later, after passing through the Albula tunnel and a narrow valley in the south, the journey comes to an end in St. Moritz, a luxurious ski resort town in Switzerland.

The panoramic windows on the train make viewing easy, and headphones are provided for narration. There are several service classes available, as well as a snack trolley, full meals, and an onboard bar. Exclusive benefits of an Excellence Class ticket include a premium multi-course lunch with local wines and a special seating area.

Country: Switzerland
COURTESY OF GLACIER EXPRESS
COURTESY OF GLACIER EXPRESS
FREDERIC REGLAIN
FREDERIC REGLAIN
3 Thu Bui

Jacobite Steam Train

This 84-mile round-trip train journey begins in Fort William in the Scottish Highlands, close to Britain's highest mountain, Ben Nevis. Along the way, it passes through lush countryside, lochs of brilliant blue, deep valleys, and charming towns. The 21-arched Glenfinnan Viaduct, with its graceful curves and towering columns, overlooking Loch Shiel and the Jacobite monument, is a highlight of the journey.


Thanks to West Coast Railways, which runs the Jacobite, Harry Potter fans will recognize this view as well as the steam engine and carriages that eventually became the Hogwarts Express. The train passes through the charming towns of Lochailort, Arisaig, and Morar before making a brief stop at Glenfinnan Station. Before the return trip to Fort William, passengers have about an hour and a half to explore the final stop in Mallaig on Scotland's west coast. Following their trip, some tourists will take the ferry from Mallaig to the Isle of Skye.

From May to October, there are morning and afternoon departures for the Jacobite Steam Train. It is advised to buy tickets in advance.

Country: Scotland
DARREN MURPH/THE POINTS GUY
DARREN MURPH/THE POINTS GUY
TIM GRAHAM
TIM GRAHAM
4 Thu Bui

Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad

The Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad, which is powered by coal, is ideal for history buffs. It was originally built to transport silver and gold from Colorado's San Juan Mountains, and it has been in continuous operation since its completion in 1882. The railroad now allows passengers to experience the same incredible journey that Old West miners and settlers did more than a century ago.


The 72 km (45 mi) route follows the Animas River as it meanders through San Juan National Forest's remote wilderness and breathtaking canyons. You won't soon forget the exceptional cliffs, vistas, and surprises in store for you in Colorado. Ride a vintage coal-fired, steam-powered locomotive and take in the breathtaking scenery as you travel through the San Juan National Forest, cross the Animas River, and hug the cliffside of the mountains.


Country: The United States

TED A CROSS
TED A CROSS
Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad traveling along the Animas River from Durango to Silverton with some of Colorado's striking canyon scenery in San Juan Mountains. ROZANNE HAKALA/GETTY IMAGES
Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad traveling along the Animas River from Durango to Silverton with some of Colorado's striking canyon scenery in San Juan Mountains. ROZANNE HAKALA/GETTY IMAGES
5 Thu Bui

Pacific Surfliner

Tourists and locals alike should take the Pacific Surfliner route in Southern California. Amtrak operates the coastal route from San Louis Obispo to San Diego, with stops in major cities such as Santa Barbara, Los Angeles, and Irvine. From start to finish, the route offers incredible views of the Pacific Ocean and makes a variety of attractions accessible along the way (think: beaches, wineries, and major stadiums).


Starting in San Luis Obispo, where you can explore the lively college town or venture out to nearby wineries or a historic mission, this Amtrak route hugs the Pacific Coast. From there, enjoy 350 miles of ocean views with beaches, rocky coastline, quaint towns, and little between you and the blue Pacific. Visit the museums in Balboa Park or dine in Little Italy or the Gaslamp Quarter in San Diego. If you have time, stop at train stations along the way that are within walking distance of local attractions. In Santa Barbara, visit the nearby beach or Funk Zone, an artsy collection of boutiques, restaurants, and cafes, or stroll and sip through the Urban Wine Trail to sample California wines.


With its historical artwork and furnishings, Union Station in Los Angeles is a destination unto itself. You can also visit Downtown Los Angeles. or the Olvera Street Mexican markets. While you wait to board for your next adventure, eat at Traxx or sip on a drink there.

Country: The United States
COURTESY OF AMTRAK
COURTESY OF AMTRAK
MEDIANEWS GROUP/ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER VIA GETTY IMAGES
MEDIANEWS GROUP/ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER VIA GETTY IMAGES
6 Thu Bui

Napa Valley Wine Train

The Napa Valley Wine train takes you past some of California's most stunning wineries and serves as both a restaurant and a museum. Riders who want a full 360-degree view of the surroundings should reserve a seat on the luxurious Vista Dome, an observation-style dining car.


One of the pleasures of the 36-mile round trip from Downtown Napa to St. Helena is riding through rows of grapevines, across farmland, and past picturesque wineries against a backdrop of green hills. Board in an industrial area of Napa and take in views of the town's outdoor contemporary art, including murals, sculpture, landscaping, and parks, as promoted by Rail Arts District Napa. Continue through the towns of Yountville, Rutherford, and Oakville, stopping for gourmet meals and wines along the way. With a variety of stops and winery tours available, it's a convenient and safe way to explore and taste wines.


The actual train cars add to the appeal and give train travel a more quaint feel. The historic cars underwent a thorough renovation that included the addition of mahogany paneling, polished brass, lavish fabrics, and etched glass partitions, to name a few things.


Country: The United States

COURTESY OF THE NAPA VALLEY WINE TRAIN
COURTESY OF THE NAPA VALLEY WINE TRAIN
BUYENLARGE
BUYENLARGE
7 Thu Bui

Grand Canyon Railway

This 130-mile round trip starts in Williams, Arizona, which is located about 30 miles west of Flagstaff and travels north to the South Rim of Grand Canyon National Park.


Passengers are encouraged to get into the Old West spirit along the way with musical entertainment, cowboy characters, and other surprises as the scenery changes from the Ponderosa pine forest of Williams to the open prairie and back to Pinion pines near the Grand Canyon. In addition to the breathtaking scenery, visitors may see wildlife such as elk, mountain lions, deer, bald eagles, owls, and California condors.

The Grand Canyon Railway trip takes two hours and 15 minutes, and it departs every day at 9:30 a.m. The South Rim can be explored in about three hours. Visitors should start at the Grand Canyon Depot, which dates back to 1909. Visitors can take advantage of the El Tovar Hotel, ranger programs, scenic walks along Hermit Road or the Rim Trail, and stunning views in every direction. 2019 marks the 100th anniversary of Grand Canyon National Park, and there will be special events all year long.

Country: The United States
COURTESY OF GRAND CANYON RAILWAY
COURTESY OF GRAND CANYON RAILWAY
GEORGE ROSE
GEORGE ROSE
8 Thu Bui

Copper Canyon Railroad

The Copper Canyon Railroad, which was built to connect the Pacific Ocean to Mexico's central desert territory, has been a popular tourist attraction since its inception. The four-hour journey through Mexico's Cooper Canyon, which is four times larger than the Grand Canyon, to the coast, passes through snow-capped mountains and primeval forests.


This journey takes you through some of Mexico's most spectacular scenery, much of which is inaccessible by other means. Copper Canyon, in the northwest state of Chihuahua, is said to be four times the size of the Grand Canyon. It is actually several canyons, the deepest of which is 6,167 feet. The length of the ride varies depending on where you board, but the Chepe Express journey from Los Mochis on the west coast to inland Creel takes about nine hours.


The train travels over 37 bridges and through 86 tunnels, and it was finally opened in 1961, several decades after it began construction. Rugged terrain, mountains, gorges, deep ravines, and even agricultural areas make up the landscape. The seclusion-loving, semi-nomadic Tarahumara people live in the Sierra Madre Mountain Range and can occasionally be seen in the towns along the route selling their handmade wares.

Some advice: Plan your trip ahead of time or work with a tour operator to make your arrangements. For the best views when traveling east, take a seat on the right side of the train.


Country: Mexico

WOLFGANG KAEHLER
WOLFGANG KAEHLER
Pinterest
Pinterest
9 Thu Bui

Kuranda Scenic Railway

The two-hour Kuranda Scenic Railway journey starts in the coastal city of Cairns and ends in Kuranda. Along the way, you'll pass waterfalls, mountains, hundreds of different kinds of plants, animals, and flowers, as well as one of the oldest rainforests in the world, which is found in Queensland, Australia. On the two-hour journey, you'll pass through landscapes with ravines, mountains, waterfalls, trees, and flowering plants.


One of Queensland's most well-known national parks, Barron Gorge, can be seen from the train or by driving a short distance from Kuranda, which is where the train line ends. Visitors can visit a café in Kuranda or shop for artwork and crafts made in the area. Other attractions include a reptile park, butterfly sanctuary, and aviary for birds.

The description of the construction of the railway, which is thought to be an extraordinary engineering achievement with 37 bridges and 15 hand-dug tunnels, includes the historic Kuranda Station, which is more than 100 years old. To fully experience the Wet Tropics World Heritage area, some visitors opt to take the railway in one direction and the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway in the other.

Country: Australia
DAISUKE KISHI/GETTY IMAGES
DAISUKE KISHI/GETTY IMAGES
JAMES D. MORGAN
JAMES D. MORGAN
10 Thu Bui

Hudson Line – Metro North

This commuter train departs from Grand Central Terminal in New York City and travels to Poughkeepsie by following the eastern bank of the Hudson River. The two-hour journey includes stops in historic towns with sights of the river, forests, and opulent mansions. Visitors can enjoy the breathtaking round-trip journey for less than $50, while daily commuters may take the scenery for granted.


As it travels north from Manhattan's Grand Central Terminal, which is a must-visit location in and of itself, the train passes the Bronx's Yankee Stadium and continues through towns that are well worth the time to stop and explore. The Dia:Beacon contemporary art museum and galleries are available in the walkable artist neighborhood of Beacon.


The river and its lush surroundings drew wealthy individuals to construct magnificent mansions, many of which are open for tours. Boscobel in Garrison, Kykuit in Sleepy Hollow, Springwood in Tarrytown, the Vanderbilt Mansion in Hyde Park, and Locust Grove in Poughkeepsie are just a few examples. Check tour hours before stopping, and for the best views, sit on the left side of the train as it heads north.


Country: The United States

PAPABEAR/GETTY IMAGES
PAPABEAR/GETTY IMAGES
ILoveNY.com
ILoveNY.com
11 Thu Bui

TranzAlpine Train

All aboard the TranzAlpine for a front-row seat to New Zealand's most dramatic landscape, the Southern Alps. The TranzAlpine begins in Christchurch and travels northwest through the fertile fields of the Canterbury Plains alongside the Waimakariri River before ascending into the mountains and crossing the mighty Staircase Viaduct. The TranzAlpine continues through the West Coast's subtropical rainforests after passing through the magnificent mountains of Arthur's Pass National Park. The journey concludes in Greymouth, a historic former gold mining town.


One of KiwiRail's Great Journeys of New Zealand is the four-and-a-half-hour trip between Christchurch and Greymouth on the South Island of New Zealand.

The train leaves Christchurch at 8:15 a.m. and travels through farmland, past sheep and cattle, and then on to the Southern Alps. After about an hour, the ascent into the mountains begins, with steel bridges crossing deep gorges, short tunnels, and the highest viaduct, 240 feet above the spectacular Waimakiriri River Gorge. After a brief stop at Arthurs Pass station, the journey continues through one of New Zealand's longest tunnels, across a deep valley, and across another river with waterfall views. The train returns to Christchurch after a one-hour stop in Greymouth, making the coast-to-coast round-trip about a 10-hour journey.

The ride is enjoyable and comfortable thanks to the reclining seats, the panoramic windows, and the skylights. Food, snacks, beer, wine, and spirits are available at the café-bar. The right side of the train offers the best views as it travels toward Greymouth, and Kiwi Rail Great Journeys offers unlimited rail passes.

Country: New Zealand
COURTESY OF TRANZALPINE
COURTESY OF TRANZALPINE
theculturetrip.com
theculturetrip.com
12 Thu Bui

Kandy to Ella, Sri Lanka

This seven-hour journey takes passengers through remote villages, waterfalls, lush green hills, and the country's most famous tea plantations. Sri Lanka's rail system, which was built by the British in the late 1800s, was originally used to transport tea and coffee for export. The train is now a popular way to travel around the country, seeing the varied scenery and observing villages and local people along the way.


The train makes stops at places where passengers can buy local snacks and fresh fruit from sellers eager to sell their goods. Hill country village Ella is worth visiting when you get there or before you board. Kandy, which is larger and has beautiful Kandy Lake, is in the center of Sri Lanka. The majority of the trains have air-conditioned first-class observation cars, and some even have reserved seats and sleeping berths. The views from Kandy are best on the right side. Tickets are sold at all of the nation's train stations, and the schedule is available online.

The seven-hour ride is very cheap and a great way to see the Sri Lankan countryside. Just make sure to book a second-class ticket so you can gaze out the window and take in the scenery.

Country: Sri Lanka
DENISCOSTILLE/GETTY IMAGES
DENISCOSTILLE/GETTY IMAGES
PandaReviewz
PandaReviewz
13 Thu Bui

Denali Star

Discover the Alaskan wilderness by rail with a ride on the Denali Star, which transports passengers from Anchorage to the gates of Denali National Park for sweeping views of the route's namesake, North America's highest peak.


The Denali Star, which is only offered in the summer, is a 12-hour, 356-mile journey (starting at $187 per person, one-way) that passes hundreds of feet over Hurricane Gulch, travels through Healy Canyon, crosses the Knik River, and features mountain vistas. In the summer, the Alaska Railroad offers a well-liked coastal route.

The Aurora Winter Train travels through the backcountry from mid-September to mid-May for those looking to see the northern lights. From Anchorage to Fairbanks, one-way shoulder season fares start at $218 per person.

Country: The United States
Denali National Park. TRAVEL ALASKA
Denali National Park. TRAVEL ALASKA
Alaska Railroad
Alaska Railroad
14 Thu Bui

The Ghan

Although approximately 85% of Australians live near the country's coast, the interior is not to be overlooked. Aside from inspiring a generally despised steakhouse, Australia's Outback is breathtakingly beautiful, with wildlife, landscapes, and culture stretching for seemingly infinite miles. The Ghan is a luxury train operated by Journey Beyond Rail Expeditions that travels from Darwin in the north to Adelaide in the south (or vice versa) on their signature four-day, three-night trip.


The path follows the path taken by the Afghan cameleers who created a permanent road through the heart of Australia. Stops include Coober Pedy, an opal mining town, and Alice Springs. Daily excursions to sites like Uluru are also possible. The train itself offers three exquisitely prepared meals each day in the Queen Adelaide Restaurant, along with private, comfortable cabins staffed by attendants.

Country: Australia
See the Outback in comfort on the Ghan. | Journey Beyond Rail
See the Outback in comfort on the Ghan. | Journey Beyond Rail
Journey Beyond Rail
Journey Beyond Rail
15 Thu Bui

Rovos Rail

Whether you have two nights or 15 days, Rovos Rail is ready to take you on board one of their opulent trains to see some of Southern Africa's most breathtaking sights. As far north as Dar Es Salaam in Tanzania, their journeys cross the lower part of the continent. There is plenty of South African wine available, so there is no need to worry. With a smoking lounge, observation car, and lounge car to keep guests entertained, the train's decor harkens back to a bygone era.


In between adventures through locations like Victoria Falls, Etosha National Park, and numerous locations known for iconic African wildlife, guests spend the night in one of the ship's many suites. This is not only one of the most interesting ways to go on a safari, but it's also a great way to see parts of Africa that are otherwise simple to overlook.


Country: Southern Africa

A whole new perspective on the African safari. | Rovos Rail
A whole new perspective on the African safari. | Rovos Rail
Travellers Choice
Travellers Choice


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