Feels like it is time for a long holiday again when I saw this article. I love scenic train rides and here’s my little reflection and ranking of some of the train rides I wouldn’t miss, out of the 12 offered from the above link.
1. The Flåm Railway, Norway
Adventure coupled with beautiful scenery, a 20km descent in nature’s beauty is one that we would wish for. Spectacular mountain slopes that envelopes the traveler, water that runs down the stream in a sweet melodious trickle, and a sky so blue that you wish you could look through the dreamy white clouds into the other worlds. Can we ever hop onto a train to nowhere, to a paradise of bliss?
2. The Glacier Express, Switzerland
I recall a great trip to Switzerland with my mother, during the times when all was well and an oblivious child explored the quaint villages and breathtaking mountains. No troubles, no fears. And it all seemed too good to be true. Switzerland, land of wonders. Where huge mountains are donned in snowfall and colorful skiers zip down the slopes, the world seemed an impossibly cheerful place. Indeed, impossible.
3. The Coastal Classic Train, Alaska
At the rate that we are destroying our environment, I doubt I might see a decent glacier in Alaska by the time I get myself there. Alaska involves a little pity and regret of my own…I’d never gotten down to visiting the scenic alpine hills and glacial landscapes of this beautiful country. I would’ve loved to visit the Saxman Village to check out their native culture, have a flightseeing tour to Gustavas and maybe even take a jetboat down the Glacier Bay! Needless to mention, visit Skagway. Alaska – by rail, by cruise ships, or by planes, a place one should never miss…
4. The Sky Train, Tibet
While the article had assured travelers of suitable ventilation, I am nervous of high altitudes in Tibet. A great place to check out if one is physically able to, Tibet possesses rich culture and history that is well preserved in the region, encased in an integration of nature’s ice plateaus and greenery. Again, a little place which has gotten me reminiscing today – how much one must have missed due to various considerations, sometimes, without a second chance. This “Roof of the World” train line, crosses territory that has been deemed impossible in the past. How technology has advanced, how things have changed over the years, and how time has been so irreversible…
5. Trans Siberian, Russia
An offtrack option, the Trans Siberian boasts of a rugged environment and an ocean of dirt and soil for the adventurous sightseer. Crossing the vast Siberian plains into Mongol and China, this journey will promise travelers a mixture of Russian & Chinese culture across the continents, a must-try for me when time permits.
I guess this post isn’t much help in showcasing the wonders of these train journeys or locations. It is, rather, a little reflection. Much has passed and little has been done – places that I should have visited with those I’d cared for, had not been visited, and it is too late to do so today. A little regret that I wish to tell all of you who see this – do not procrastinate, or else do not make empty promises you cannot fulfil.
If you’ve promised someone a trip that means something to that someone, don’t ever miss the train, you don’t always have a second chance.