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Travel Info & Tips Useful and Inspirational European Train Travel Websites and Articles

Useful and Inspirational European Train Travel Websites and Articles

A directory of the most useful articles dedicated to taking European trains, including practical insights and ideas which inspire making train journeys

| Last Updated: 3 months ago

Introducing this list:

ShowMeTheJourney is obviously far from being the only online resource to provide assistance and insights to train journey takers.

Hence the idea, that a list of other relevant websites, apps and resources for train journey planning would be a useful short-cut, to avoiding the hours of searching it took to track down these links to helpful and inspirational information.

If you think we’re missing any service that you’ve found useful, then drop our founder Simon an email so that it can be added.

Journey Planning:

Practical journey planning tools:

Seat 61 - On our quest to be mobile-friendly we often summarise, but if you want more detail, plus step-by-step guides and info for train travel in countries we've yet to cover, then this fantastic resource will be worth all the time you can give to it.

DB Navigator - If you know when you want to make a train journey in Europe, then this app from Germany's national rail operator will show you the route options - it's particularly useful for planning journeys which require connections.

Though be aware that it does tend to focus on the fastest end-to-end journey times, so some of the connections it includes between trains can be tightly timed - it will assume that all the trains it suggests will arrive and depart on time.

European Rail Timetable - Despite this age of digital enabled travel, SMTJ doesn't embark on a train journey itinerary without one of these timetable books.
When you can't get on to wi-fi, or your batteries have died, they prove their worth time and time again.

And their new digital editions can be a second-to-none journey planning resource, particularly if you want to follow more obscure routes.
Plus their blog has inspiring insights into the train journeys featured on the timetables . Danish travel blogger Britt Sallingboe has published a wonderful book titled OPLEV EUROPA MED TOG (Explore Europe by Train) and its accompanying website includes links to all of the fabulously useful resources featured in the text.

So it’s an essential list of websites for planning journeys, booking tickets and making the most of the Europe’s railway based attractions and other must-visit locations that can be best accessed by train.

Use these resources along side our journey and country and rail pass guides and you'll have accessed all the essential info you need for planning your European train travel adventure, whether you'll be taking just one or two journeys or crossing the continent.

These sites and articles mix inspirational content with practical tips and insights:

Togbloggen - A fabulous website from a lovely Norwegian travel blogger - again it's worth using Google Translate to read these articles.

TrainTracksEU - This fantastic website is written in German, but if you can't read German, again it's worth using Google Translate to dive into its wealth of articles - particularly as many of them cover the less obvious aspects of train travel.

BackOnTrack - A new and rather fabulous resource if you want to make an overnight train journey in Europe.

RailGuideEurope - A German train conductor publishes in-depth guides to train services and stations, which he encounters both during his work and train journeys for pleasure.

Fodors - An excellent summary of why taking the train is so much better than taking the plane.

SaveATrain - A great check-list for things you need to have in mind when planning a European train travel adventure.

Intrepid Travel - We love its 'Tips & Hacks for European train travel, there's some great advice here.

TheSavvyBackpacker - A website dedicated to travelling Europe on a budget, with great train ticket advice and destination tips and ideas.

Europe By Rail - the publisher of regularly updated and rather fabulous guide books to exploring Europe by train

Use them along with our travel guides and insights that will both inform and inspire;

Europe's International Rail Routes

Travelling on European Daytime trains

Travelling on European Overnight trains

Travelling with Children On European Trains

Tips for How to Travel Around Europe By Train

Using InterRail and Eurail Passes

Fabulous Inspirational Articles:

How to see the best of Switzerland in 7 Days (from National Geographic)

Some great insights into planning a trip using a rail pass (from Never Ending Voyage)

Five great routes to follow if you can only dedicate one week to seeing Europe by train (from On The Luce)

Was using a rail pass worth it? (from Miss Tourist) A fantastic step-by-step guide to taking a rail pass trip - hopefully SMTJ isn't giving too much away by revealing that the answer to the question is "Yes".

Taking a family holiday by InterRail with two children (from The Daily Telegraph)

DivergentTravelers - This recently published guide to travelling around Europe with a Eurail Pass has some useful insights, which also apply if you'll be using an InterRail pass.

Treksplorer - These insights into how to see Europe by train in two weeks or less are regularly update

Booking train tickets:

Our journey and ticketing guides live up to their name by pointing you in the direction of which ticket agents sell tickets for your journey - and by explaining how to look for and book your optimum ticket.

But what makes these specialist ticket agents and aggregators that we've listed below different, is that they sell or offer journeys in multiple countries and on multiple international train routes.



Destination info:

Useful Websites that we highly recommend:

Atlas Obscura - Guiding you to the hidden gems in more than 100 European cities.

Citymapper - How to travel to/from the city centre stations in these European cities - Amsterdam, Barcelona, Berlin, Brussels, Cologne, Copenhagen, Dusseldorf, Hamburg, London, Lyon, Madrid, Milan, Paris, Rome, Rotterdam, Stockholm, The Hague and Utrecht.

EuropeanBestDestinations - An alternative to city guides, its ideas are grouped by categories such as Beaches, Ski Resorts and transport themes - the latter get a big thumbs up from us!

Like A Local - The inside track from the residents of dozens of cities across Europe.

Lonely Planet - Our pick of the top flight pan-European travel guides with a host of articles on what to do, where to stay and where to eat/drink.

Spotted By Locals - This site also features tips from the residents of more than 40 cities across Europe.

The Savvy Backpaper - How to experience the best of a host of cities on a budget, including Amsterdan, Barcelona, Berlin, Brussels, Budapest, Florence, London, Madrid, Munich, Paris, Prague, Rome, Venice and Vienna.

Great General Articles:

24 of Europe's Best Museums (from Far And Wide)

10 Great Places To Stay Near Stations (from Guardian Travel)

Fabulous train journeys:

It won't be a surprise to discover that we love lists of amazing train journeys and we've already published one such GUIDE ourselves - with more to come!

But there are still a few of Europe's most spectacular rail routes we've yet to travel on, so we're always open to ideas - inspired by The Guardian's list we recently added on a Naples to Sicily journey on to the end of a family holiday.

There can be no such thing as a definitive list because everyone will have their favourites - and the weather also always plays its part!

And yes certain journeys inevitably appear on most of these lists, but they have all at least or two unique suggestions.

The Most Scenic Railway Journeys in Great Britain (Mark's Rail Adventures)

The 50 Best Rail Journeys For 2019 - including many fabulous suggestions for European train rides (The Daily Telegraph)

6 Of The Best Train Rides in Europe (plus 14 others from around the World) (TracyTravelsInTime)

11 Beautiful Train Journeys from London (Time Out)

The Best European Train Trips (Condé Nast Traveller)

The Most Drop Dead Gorgeous Train Rides in Europe (Thrillist)

Scenic Train Rides in Europe (European Best Destinations)

18 of The World's Best Rail Journeys (The Guardian) - includes 7 European journeys

15 Scenic Train Rides in Europe (Go Go Places)

8 Scenic European Train Rides (Days To Come/Tour Radar)

5 Off Beat Train Journey Ideas (Wanderlust)

12 European Scenic Train Rides (Far And Wide)

10 Great European Train Rides (Rough Guides)

General train travel tips and advice:

Tips for getting a Good Night's Sleep on Overnight trains - not Europe specific, but still useful (from Wanderlust)

How to take Photos From A Train (from Wanderlust)

How to Pack and What to take on a rail pass itinerary (from Savvy Backpacker)

Money Saving Tips in Big Cities (from Far And Wide)

Taking Pets on European Trains (from PetTravel)

Mark's Rail Adventures - A blogger who documents his regular train journeys in Britain and Europe, with inside tips on how to follow in his footsteps. Highly recommended!

Other sites which inspire us:

It isn't just the sights that can be seen from the train windows that inspire our train journeys.

It's the design surrounding train travel both present, past and future, which often leads us to the station - and these websites have encouraged us to go by train.

The Beauty Of Transport

Retours Railway History Design & Photography

And we also love collections of stories about why people try by train, like these

Swiss Travel System


Simon Harper

I wanted to share my passion for train travel and explain how anyone can take the fantastic journeys I have taken.


This is one of more than 100 train travel guides available on ShowMeTheJourney, which will make it easier to take the train journeys you want or need to make. As always, all images were captured on trips taken by ShowMeTheJourney.


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