With the ever-shrinking airline legroom and the desire to harken back to an age where travel was an elegant affair, luxury train travel has recently enjoyed a revival. While a train trip will take significantly longer, the benefit lies in the details of the experience. In addition to visiting exotic destinations along the route, you’ll be able to watch as amazing landscapes rush by while indulging in five-course meals before drifting off to sleep in your private cabin to the rhythmic rocking of the rails.
Book your ticket, pack your bags, and prepare for a timeless journey aboard one of these four extravagant rail trips.
Russia and Mongolia
The two-week Trans-Siberian route connects Moscow to Vladivostok and is perhaps the world’s greatest railway journey. While spending two weeks aboard a train may seem less than enjoyable, Golden Eagle has raised the ante with Silver and Gold Class accommodations (all with en-suite bathrooms) and limited Imperial Suites on each route. The route is available eastbound and westbound with each crossing the Ural Mountains, traversing the vast Mongolian steppe and ride along the shore of the world’s largest freshwater lake.
Climb aboard this epic 15-day train journey from Cape Town, South Africa, to Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Guests can choose from three suite options as they travel on this safari-by-rail trip of a lifetime. Prices for the north to south (or the return) journey start at $12,820 and include all accommodations, meals, and excursions. Need a little more motivation before booking? The excusrion will take guests through South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Zambia, and Tanzania. While large panoramic windows allow for epic views of the African landscape, guests can also experience whitewater rafting, sunset cruise on the Zambezi River, game drives, and more.
While shorter in scope than some of the other luxury trips, this rail route travels through some of the most scenic terrains in South America, if not the world. The Andean Explorer also takes one of the highest train routes and the dramatic landscape can be enjoyed from the observation car. Begin the journey in the former Incan capital of Cusco and navigate the heart of the Andes as the train makes its way to Arequipa via Puno and the Lake Titicaca, the world’s highest navigable lake. Or, if you prefer, start in Arequipa and finish in Cusco. Each of the twin and double cabins provides en-suite bathrooms and are accented with traditional handwoven fabrics and alpaca wool blankets.
Making travel reservations typically revolves around availability. With Train Suite Shiki-Shima, the process involves an application process and lottery if more reservation requests exist than spaces allotted. With multiple suite options to choose from, guests can relax in luxurious comfort while enjoying the beautiful landscape of this island nation. Even before guests board the shiny gold modern train at Platform 13.5, they are treated like royalty as they wait in the private lounge. Once aboard, the train features multiple suite options and depending on your luck (and budget), perhaps the two-floor suite will be on the itinerary.
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