Where to Experience the Nostalgic Charm of Train Travel

There are many ways to travel – by plane, boat or just your car. But the experience of a train ride is often forgotten, with its relaxing and comfortable mode of transportation. From the plains of Africa to the California coast, you can see vast regions of the world not accessible by other means. As travel writer Paul Theroux once said, “I have seldom heard a train go by and not wished I was on it.” These are some of our favorite routes around the globe to experience the charm of train travel.

TranzAlpine, New Zealand



This New Zealand railroad features some of the most breathtaking views of the Southern Alps. Traveling between Christchurch and Greymouth on the South Island, this nine-hour round-trip route traverses more than 130 miles. Through mountains, plains and along the Waimakariri River, the TranzAlpine offers large recliner chairs as well as a full cafe on board. To book your trip through New Zealand, visit their website HERE.

The Ghan, Australia



Looking for a little more adventure on your journey? The Ghan offers guests a 4 day, 3 night expedition through the heart of Australia while traveling more than 1,800 miles. Originally named the Afghan Express, this train route got its start with the cameleers who traveled the same route more than 150 years ago. The Ghan has a variety of onboard experiences including gourmet meals by master chefs and some of Australia’s finest wines. It even includes off train excursions such as river cruises, camel rides and helicopter flights. To request a brochure or book a ride, visit their website HERE.

California Zephyr, California


train travel
Photo courtesy of Amtrak


Bring your travels stateside with a trip along the California coast! Traveling from Chicago to San Francisco, the California Zephyr travels nearly 2,500 miles throughout the Rockies and snow-capped mountains of the Sierra Nevadas. With stops in major cities such as Denver, Salt Lake City and Oakland, it’s easy to get where you’re going with a view. Passengers are given the options of a coach seat or a more luxurious bedroom in one of their Superliner Sleeping Cars. Experience the majesty of the coast while taking in its beautiful landscape. To book your next trip on the California Zephyr, visit their website HERE.

Blue Train, South Africa



Known as the “window to the soul of Africa”, the Blue Train first began steam-rolling in the early 1920’s. With a 27-hour journey of almost 1,000 miles, it travels between Pretoria and Cape Town through the African landscape. Passengers can choose from De Luxe and Luxury suites along with elegant lounges for having a drink, a smoke or just socializing. With a five-star dining experience onboard, guests are treated to signature dishes of lamb, oyster and ostrich as well as vegan or gluten-free options. You can even dine in the privacy of a private suite for a more romantic evening. To book your stay on the Blue Train, visit their website HERE.

From traversing over mountains to traveling through deserts and plains, there’s a certain nostalgic charm that comes with train travel that you can’t find anywhere else. With so many accommodations and luxury options, you can see the world from your window! You might also try departing the train for an off-road excursion to explore your surroundings. Want to capture your timeless memories without missing a moment? Here’s why you should hire a professional photographer on your next vacation to capture timeless photos!

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Where to Experience the Nostalgic Charm of Train Travel