Traveling in Europe by Train

europe-by-train
Have you ever decided to do something while traveling and then wondered if that was a good decision?
Recently, I planned a trip for my family to travel around Europe by train. We planned on visiting four countries during our vacation. After considering the pros and cons of renting a car or traveling by train, train travel stood out as the best choice for us. I have traveled by train in Europe without my family in the past and really enjoyed it, but that was years ago. What if traveling with a family was more difficult? What if I didn’t remember how to do it or screwed up and got on the wrong train or off at the wrong destination and lead my family astray? These questions swirled around in my mind.
Because we were going to several different destinations, I decided to purchase Eurail passes for each of us. Eurail offers quite a few options for passes, so you can pick the best-fitting one based on how many countries you will visit and how many days you want to travel. We purchased the Eurail Select Pass, which worked perfectly with our itinerary because it would allow us to travel throughout 4 bordering countries of our choice. Next, I looked at all of the train departure times and made reservations on the trains that required a reservation. I also downloaded the Eurail “Rail Planner” app on my phone. This app gave me access to rail schedules, made it easy to locate train stations, displayed city maps, and much more. We were well prepared before we left for Europe.

Salzburg Train Station

Waiting at the train platform in Salzburg, Austria

Once we arrived in Europe, we walked to the train station that was located right at the airport. By looking at the train arrival/departure monitors, we could see which track our train would come in on, as well as the exact time it was scheduled to depart. All we had to do was head to the platform and wait for the train. Once we loaded our luggage on the train, we were able to relax and enjoy the ride. After a long night of sitting cooped up on an airplane, it felt so nice to be on the train; we could get up and walk around as much as we wanted or enjoy the comfortable train seats. And the views out the windows were a great way to acclimate ourselves to our current location.

Train Travel in Europe

Enjoying the big windows and roomy seats on the train after a cramped overnight flight.

My family embraced riding on the train. Our teenagers were excited to discover that the “the train was just like the trains used in the Harry Potter movies.” They loved that there was a food car on most of the trains as well, and that we were served a meal on the long train rides. Traveling in Europe by train with my family was just as good as it had been when I traveled alone. The extensive rail network in Europe made it simple to transfer from one destination to the next, and getting on and off the train was much easier than I remembered. There was no reason for me to be worried at all and I will definitely plan to travel by train in Europe again.
If the ease, comfort, and convenience of train travel appeals to you, let us know and we can help you arrange rail tickets and passes for your next vacation. Witte Travel & Tours is the only agency in West Michigan that has a direct link to Rail Europe’s reservation system, so we can process rail passes quickly while avoiding costly shipping fees.
What has been your experience with traveling by train? Share your stories with us onFacebook, or let us know what you think in the comments!

Give the Gift of Multi-Generational Family Vacation

Witte Travel & Tours In the News

As featured in the April 2015 issue of Grand Rapids Magazine

HEADQUARTERED IN GRAND RAPIDS, West Michigan’s premier travel company, Witte Travel & Tours, has been helping people explore the world since 1975. According to Karen Chircop, who co-owns the company with Bruce Klein-Wassink and Nate Barendse, one of the most popular travel trends today is multigenerational family vacations…view the rest of the story

Disney's New "Art of Animation" Resort

The first phase of Disney’s new Art of Animation Resort (the “Finding Nemo” Family Suites) is opening May 31, 2012! When completed, this incredible resort will feature 1,120 spacious family suites specially designed to accommodate up to six guests as well as 864 rooms. The resort will reflect the artistry from “Finding Nemo”, “Cars”, “The Lion King” and “The Little Mermaid”.
Disney’s Art of Animation Resort is adjacent to Disney’s Hollywood Studios Theme Park and ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. Guests can enjoy complimentary transportation throughout Walt Disney World. The family suites are designed to comfortably accommodate up to six guests and will include two separate bathrooms, a master bedroom and three separate sleeping areas within living space that also includes a large dining/work table that transforms into a comfortable bed!
Three sparkling swimming pools and four playful courtyards – one for each of the films featured at this resort – will complete your Resort experience!
The “Cars” Family Suites are slated to open June 18, 2012; “The Lion King” Family Suites on August 12, 2012; and “The Little Mermaid” Standard Rooms on September 15, 2012. All rooms and suites are available for booking now! Let Witte Travel help you be one of the first guests to experience the magic of Disney’s Art of Animation!

Disney’s New “Art of Animation” Resort

The first phase of Disney’s new Art of Animation Resort (the “Finding Nemo” Family Suites) is opening May 31, 2012! When completed, this incredible resort will feature 1,120 spacious family suites specially designed to accommodate up to six guests as well as 864 rooms. The resort will reflect the artistry from “Finding Nemo”, “Cars”, “The Lion King” and “The Little Mermaid”.
Disney’s Art of Animation Resort is adjacent to Disney’s Hollywood Studios Theme Park and ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. Guests can enjoy complimentary transportation throughout Walt Disney World. The family suites are designed to comfortably accommodate up to six guests and will include two separate bathrooms, a master bedroom and three separate sleeping areas within living space that also includes a large dining/work table that transforms into a comfortable bed!
Three sparkling swimming pools and four playful courtyards – one for each of the films featured at this resort – will complete your Resort experience!
The “Cars” Family Suites are slated to open June 18, 2012; “The Lion King” Family Suites on August 12, 2012; and “The Little Mermaid” Standard Rooms on September 15, 2012. All rooms and suites are available for booking now! Let Witte Travel help you be one of the first guests to experience the magic of Disney’s Art of Animation!