Follow your travel fancies with flexible rail holidays

Follow your travel fancies with flexible rail holidays

Have you planned your summer getaway yet? Worked out how you’re getting to that getaway? Two wings? Four wheels? Two wheels? Two feet? How about two rails?

Train travel across Europe is fast, cheap, comfortable and reliable – and an excellent green choice for long distance travel in terms of energy consumption per passenger mile and reduced greenhouse gas emissions.

Whether you like a holiday full of unexpected diversion, sticking to a strict schedule or something betwixt and between, the joys of the open rail network await you…

Catch all the sights with a guided rail tour...

For those that get antsy over seat-of-the-pants travel, or just want to switch the planning brain off and pay someone else to do all the work for a change, why not try one of the many guided rail tours departing via the Eurostar? How about...

>> The foothills and valley stations of the Pyrenees, with a stay on the Catalan coast and a ride on the ‘Truffle Train’ through the Dordogne?

>> Historic Remagen, a boat trip along the spectacular Rhine Gorge and legendary Siegfried country?

>> The Glacier Express through the Swiss Alps, taking in mountain resorts and the Matterhorn?

...or ease your road trip by loading your car or motorbike on the train...

No need to bookend your European road trip with hellish red-eye drives, pounding along autoroutes, autobanen or autostrade for days on end. Four networks of special Motorail trains can whisk you and your car or motorbike speedily across central Europe during the summer months:

>> The French Auto-Train, for destinations from Paris including Nice and Marseille

>> The Austrian Motorail Train can take you between Vienna and Livorno in Tuscany, Vienna and Hamburg as well as Düsseldorf and Innsbruck

>> Optima Tours’ main Motorail route will transport you and your vehicle all the way from Austria to Edirne in western Turkey, or vice versa

>> The Urlaubs-Express route runs from Hamburg to Verona in northern Italy. 

...or let your plans unfold organically!

Some places get under your skin, one way or another!

If you’ve felt the wrench of having to move on from a particular gem of a city, or been desperate to escape a disappointing resort, an easy-breezy holiday by rail pass could be just the ticket.

Interrail passes (for non-EU citizens, Eurail passes) offer unlimited travel in 31 countries across Europe from any British train station.

The only parts of the trip that need be reserved in advance are your Eurostar crossings and certain popular routes; otherwise, you’re free to explore at your own pace. Meander around an area that deserves more of your attention; move up the coast to a locally recommended beach; or, if your feet get itchy, pile onto a train and switch countries halfway!   

Interrail passes covering all 31 countries start from just £145, though if you can narrow down your travel plans to one country, prices start from as little as £60. In all cases, seniors and young people benefit from extra discounts and, brilliantly, two under-12s can travel for free on each adult pass.

Do you fancy a summer holiday on rails this year? Ever tried a guided tour by train? Share your thoughts, tips and questions with Greenredeem on Facebook or Twitter.

>> England’s most tranquil holiday spots

>> A lake, a llyn, a loch and a lough – by public transport

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