The 16 Ultimate European Journeys by regular Express Trains

Europe's Most Epic Express Train Journeys
Where were these pictures taken?

This guide to Europe’s most wonderful express train routes, taken by DIRECT regular trains between fabulous cities, inevitably features easy to access journeys - likely to be on many exploring Europe by train itineraries.

Other guides to Europe’s most scenic journeys tend to include special trains, such as The Glacier or Bernina  Expresses along with journeys slightly off the beaten track - because spectacular landscapes don’t tend to be compatible with fast express train travel.

But in Europe some regular express trains can’t avoid mountains or coasts, or have to follow routes through deep river valleys - so it's those we have focused on with this list!

What also makes these guides different from the norm, is that the images aren't of the trains taking these routes, instead they were taken from the train, so give an insight into the journey experience.

Plus each of the journeys guides also have access to the PRACTICAL INFORMATION such as the station, train and ticket details.

Oh and the context for left/right is facing the direction of travel.
Most of these journeys can of course be enjoyed in either direction, so flip the left/right advice if you will travelling in the opposite direction.



1: London to Penzance:
The Best Express Train Journeys in Europe

Britain's most spectacular westward rail journey - rolling countryside, sea views and some fabulous views from bridges.


2: Köln/Cologne To Klagenfurt:

The only rail journey that travels through both the Rhine Gorge in Germany and on the incredible Tauern route in Austria.


3: Malaga to Barcelona: 

Five hours of rushing across the landscapes of Spain on Europe's most thrilling high speed rail journey.


4: Marseille to Genova/Genoa:

The only train journey that travels along both the French and Italian Riviera coastlines.


5: Milano To Geneve:

Travel by both Lake Maggiore and Lake Geneva and through mountain valleys in between.


6: Milano To Zurich:
The train between Milan and Zurich is included on our ultimate express train journeys list

Spectacular views of no less than five Swiss lakes.


7: München/Munich - Venezia/Venice:
By train from Munich to Venice is one of Europe's greatest train journeys

More than three hours of spellbinding views including the passage through the Brennero Pass.


8: Oslo-Bergen:

Plateaus in the mountains above the tree line, crystal lakes, rivers and fjords - this journey has them all!


9: Paris - Torino/Turin:

The only train journey which features both a high speed section and a stunning passage through the Alps.

10: Rome and Naples  - Sicily:
Rome and Naples to Sicily is one of Europe's Ultimate journeys by train

With more than four hours of sea views, this is Europe's ultimate coastal train journey.


11: Salzburg - Zagreb:

End-to-end incredible scenery - the Tauern route in Austria, beautiful Slovenia and the Sava River gorge.


12: Vienna/Wien - Ljubljana:
The Vienna to Ljubljana route is one of Europe's ultimate express train journeys

The only route which includes both the The Semmering Railway and the River Sava gorge


13: Vienna/Wien - Venice/Venezia:
Vienna to Venice is one of Europe's greatest train journeys

More than three hours of glorious Austrian scenery plus Italian mountain peaks and the lovely arrival at journey's end


14: York To Aberdeen:

Four of the world's best views from railway bridges and more than three hours of coastal landscapes.


15: Zagreb to Wien/Vienna:

Through the stunning valleys in Slovenia and then over the Semmering Railway in Austria.


16: Zurich To Graz:

The only train that travels over the epic Arlberg route and then through the mountains east of Innsbruck.


The inclusions above aren't quite a comprehensive list, as ShowMeTheJourney wanted to illustrate each journey with recently captured images and videos.

So at a future date we plan to add these fabulous express train routes:

RIIMINI - BARI (though SMTJ has travelled the northern part of this route).



SAN REMO TO ROMA (though SMTJ has travelled on the most spectacular part of this route).


Where were the pictures taken?:

From clockwise top left, they were taken at;

(i) Heading through the Brennero Pass on a  München/Munich - Venezia/Venice journey
(ii) Near Flam station on the Oslo - Bergen
(iii) Between Bad Gastein and Spittal on the  Salzburg - Zagreb journey
(iv) East of St Raphael on the Marseille to Genova/Genoa route
(v) Travelling by the River Sava on the Wien/Vienna to Ljubljana route
(vi) The bridges over the Tyne on the  York - Aberdeen journey
(vii) Passing the Wallensee on the Zurich - Graz journey
(viii) Through the foothills of the Italian alps on the Paris - Torino/Turin route