Discover the World has launched a new collection of rail journeys across Europe enabling travellers to enjoy car free adventures across the Mediterranean, Scandinavia, the Alps, and even the Arctic regions of the continent. Prices start from £1482pp for the 10 night London to Paris the Long Way Round journey exploring the Channel Islands on route including Guernsey and Sark.

Using its 38 years of trip planning expertise worldwide, the specialist travel company is focusing a little closer to home with this launch, offering a fascinating choice of trips exploring Europe’s diverse 150,000 miles of rail network which will appeal to many people looking for car and flight free holiday options.

The new collection aims to recapture the adventure and romance of train travel as well as offering a less stressful alternative to flying and allowing travellers to reduce their carbon footprint and delve deeply into each destination. The trips can be booked as entirely flight free with the option to fly in and out of the journey at recommended points if preferred.

Switzerland train
Swiss mountain train Bernina Express crossed Alps with snow wall.

“One of our primary sustainability focuses as a company is introduce more holidays which allow our clients to take fewer flights and stay for longer durations so they are able to really immerse themselves in the destination and explore at their own pace. This collection is such an important part of this allowing for entirely flight free trips in many cases, commented Clive Stacey, Founder and Chairman of Discover the World.

There are 12 journeys to choose from, including classic itineraries such as the Treasures of Southern Italy,  as well as many more unusual combinations like the aptly named Europe’s Tiny Countries and Alps to the Adriatic by Rail, with departures year round in some cases with Discover the World recommending the best season of travel for each trip.

And, true to the company’s Nordic specialism, there are five trips which focus entirely on this area with choices such as the epic three-week Arctic Rail Odyssey perfect for autumn and winter months offering Northern Lights viewing potential, as well as making the most of the endless summer days and the midnight sun in June.

The journeys can be combined with some incredible experiences. For example, the Grand Tour of Switzerland covers many of the classic rail journeys such as the GoldenPass Railway, Gornergrat, Glacier Express, Bernina Express and Gotthard Panorama Express and during stays in Interlaken, mountain excursions can be taken, exploring Jungfraujoch and Grindelwald.

For example:

Arctic Rail Odyssey21 days from £3459pp

Train to Narvik in winter passing by mountains
Train to Narvik in winter passing by mountains

The 21 day Arctic Rail Odyssey, a journey exploring much of Arctic Europe also includes the opportunity to stay in the original Icehotel, plus the Treehotel or the Arctic Bath, as well as visiting Copenhagen, Oslo and Stockholm and the Norwegian Fjords, Trondheim and Målmo.  The fully no fly option is priced from £3,459 pp and also includes a stunning 10 hour ride on the Nordland Railway through the Trøndelag forests and Saltfjellet mountains of Norway crossing the Arctic Circle before reaching Bodø to catch a ferry to The Lofoten Islands.

Europe’s Tiny Countries13 nights from £2,198pp

This is a 13 night journey exploring the diminutive countries of Liechtenstein, San Marino, Vatican City and Monaco, all fascinating by virtue of their size as the iconic sights they boast within.

Trail of the Vikings Rail Adventure -14 nights from £2,045

This fortnight exploration of Denmark, Norway and Sweden includes a ride on the 100-year-old scenic Dovre Railway from Oslo to Trondheim, as well as the Rauma Railway and the opportunity to hike in the spectacular mountains at Åndalsnes and a visit to the mighty Trollveggen – Europe’s tallest vertical mountain wall.

Alps to the Adriatic14 nights from £2,088pp

This trip explores the five countries whose history is steeped in the legacy of the Habsburg monarchy including Munich, Vienna, Ljubljana, Trieste and Venice with the option to splash out on the Venice Simplon Orient Express on the return. Connecting mountain and sea this journey is rich in grand palaces and imperial finery. One day you could be watching Lipizzaner stallions strutting their stuff at Vienna’s Hofburg Palace and on another gazing at the Adriatic across Trieste’s Piazza dell’Unità d’Italia. The price including the return journey on the Simplon Orient Express is priced from £4,539

And finally, there’s a trio of Italian adventures including the opportunity to roll a number of city breaks into one with the Classic Cities of Italy which takes in Milan, Florence, Arezzo, Perugia, Rome, Venice and Zurich in a relaxed two-week holiday, priced from £1,958pp.

Switzerland train
Image of Swiss Alps with Gornergrad tourist train, waterfall and Matterhorn in Valais region.

“We are really focused on finding the right balance between helping our clients minimise their impact on the environment at the same time as allowing them to continue to travel and open their minds as well as still supporting the many other positive impacts travel can have on supporting communities, sustainable development and conservation. It’s a journey we are all on as we know there is so much more we need to do and this is one of many new initiatives you will see from us, added Stacey.

All journeys can be booked on a tailor made basis and are suitable for couples, friends, solo and families travelling – full collection here : https://www.discover-the-world.com/experiences/rail-holidays/.


Main image: The Landwasser Viaduct in winter. Part of the Glacier Express route.

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