The train ride from Kandy, the second largest city in Sri Lanka, to the village of Ella (also known as Elle) takes around seven hours. However, the views are so incredible you’ll probably wish it lasted longer. The mesmerising 121km journey travels through tea plantations, rice fields, forests, waterfalls and mountains, so it’s no surprise that it’s often named the most beautiful train journey ever. And while voyages such as these can often come with a hefty price tag, this trip will only set you back around a tenner. Remember, Sri Lanka Railways tickets aren’t available to buy online, so you can either purchase them from the station on the day you’re travelling or buy a seat in a reserved car from an agency - such as Visit Sri Lanka tours
And if you want to explore Kandy in more depth, why not try our Kandy Day trip which takes you to the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic as well as the Royal Botanical Gardens?
Travelling on the Douro Line is another very special experience. It was built in the late 19th century, and riding across it on the historic steam train is the most memorable ways to see Douro River Valley in Portugal. The route, which takes around an hour and a half, runs from Porto to Pocinho and crosses 30 bridges and 26 tunnels. It also offers some incredible views of the Douro wine region. Then, a stop at the famous Pinhão railway station gives you an opportunity to take in the gorgeous blue-and-white glazed tiles, called azulejos. This is hugely popular with visitors to the region.
While Spain has plenty of scenic train rides to choose from, the journey from Madrid to Seville is definitely one of its finest. The 530km route, which takes two and a half hours, kicks off in the capital at Atocha Station. It then whisks those on board across Andalusia, travelling through the beautiful city of Cordoba, before setting down in Seville. Passengers can travel on either AVE, Altaria or Alvia trains. There's usually one every hour, so you can plan an itinerary that suits you. Online bookings for each service are available through renfe.com.
When it comes to scenic and luxurious train journeys, India’s Maharajas' Express is in a class of its own. It’s won The World's Leading Luxury Train title four times in a row at the World Travel Awards, and also happens to be one of the most expensive train journeys ever. But if you’re prepared to fork out a few thousand pounds, you’ll be treated to some breath-taking views of India. The Maharajas Express runs on five different circuits. The rides on offer include a four-day journey which runs through Delhi, Agra, Ranthambore and Jaipur. Then there’s the seven-day Indian Splendour trip, which will take you through the before mentioned destinations as well as Bikaner, Jodhpur and Mumbai. It also includes a stopover at the Taj Mahal, as well as a visit to the to the largest dinosaur fossil park in the world in Balasinor.
There’s travelling in style, and then there’s travelling on the Blue Train. Known as a five-star hotel on wheels, this ridiculously swish train makes its way through the 994 miles between Cape Town and Pretoria in 27 hours. It also showcases some of South Africa’s most striking scenery, including the Karoo desert and Table Top mountain. There’s also a short stop in the town of Matjiesfontein in the Karoo on the northbound journey, while the diamond-mining town of Kimberley is the stopover on the journey back. But while the backdrop is definitely a sight to behold, the service on board is as top notch as the views. Passengers have access to an on call butler 24 hours a day, as well as some of the finest wines in the region.
is located on Sri Lanka's south-west coast and sits right on the beach, so it's a great place to rejuvenate after taking on a train tour.
If you opt to take on a train journey in Spain, why not book into Riu Chiclana in Andalucia for a change of pace? We're talking pools, a jam-packed entertainment schedule and a splashpark for the kids.
The Hotel Pestana Carlton Madeira Premium Ocean Resort is set on a hillside overlooking Funchal, and comes with four pools and a 5T rating.
Our top deals tailored to you, straight to your inbox Sign up for offers
More from TUI
About TUI MyTUI app Cookies Notice Privacy Notice Terms & Conditions Credit card fees Media Centre Travel Jobs Affiliates Discover Lakes & Mountains Discover Weddings App Store for Ios Google Play Store TUI Travel Money Holiday Budget Calculator TUI Group TUI Credit Card First Choice Holiday Brochures Travel After Brexit Holiday Weather
The Foreign & Commonwealth Office and National Travel Health Network and Centre have up-to-date advice on staying safe and healthy abroad.
For the latest travel advice from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office including security and local laws, plus passport and visa information check www.gov.uk/travelaware and follow @FCOtravel and Facebook.com/FCOtravel
More information is available by checking /destinations/info/travel-aware
Keep informed of current travel health news by visiting www.travelhealthpro.org.uk.
The advice can change so check regularly for updates
Some of the flights and flight-inclusive holidays on this website are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. But ATOL protection does not apply to all holiday and travel services listed on this website. This website will provide you with information on the protection that applies in the case of each holiday and travel service offered before you make your booking. If you do not receive an ATOL Certificate then the booking will not be ATOL protected. If you do receive an ATOL Certificate but all the parts of your trip are not listed on it, those parts will not be ATOL protected. Please see our booking conditions for information, or for more information about financial protection and the ATOL Certificate go to: www.caa.co.uk