Amsterdam Centraal station
 

Amsterdam Centraal Station, opened in 1889.

   See Amsterdam Centraal station information

   See 1st class lounge information

   See suggested hotels in Amsterdam

I want to go from Amsterdam to...

     

       Click here if your journey starts in another city.

This page explains how to travel by train from Amsterdam to other cities all over Europe, and how to buy tickets the cheapest way. Train information is current for 2019.

Tip:  Where to wait for your train at Amsterdam Centraal...

With a 1st class international ticket including an InterRail or Eurail pass, you can use the NS Lounge at Amsterdam Centraal.  With any class of ticket, I recommend the beautifully retro Grand Cafe 1e Klas on platform 2B for a beer, coffee or meal before your train.  Spot the cockatoo on the bar.

Before you buy your tickets...

Take a moment to read these tips for buying European train tickets.  They answer the usual questions, "Do I need to book in advance or can I just buy at the station?", "Can I stop off?", "Are there Senior fares?" and that old favourite, "Should I buy an $800 railpass or just buy a €39 point-to-point ticket online?".   Click here to understand how far ahead you can buy train tickets.

European train travel FAQ...

An introduction to European train travel

 

Senior fares (over 60)

 

Guide to Eurail passes (overseas visitors)

Important tips for buying European train tickets

Youth fares (under 26)

 

Guide to InterRail passes (for Europeans)

How to check European train times

Child fares & child age limits

 

Couchettes & sleepers on night trains

Do I need to book in advance?

Luggage on European trains

 

Train seat numbering plans

How far ahead can I book?

Luggage storage at stations

 

Wheelchairs & special needs

Can I stop off on the way?

Taking a bike by train

 

Real-time service updates

Should I travel 1st or 2nd class?

Taking a car by train

 

Hotels & accommodation

How long to allow for connections?

Taking dogs & pets by train

 

Changing stations in Paris by metro or taxi

How early to arrive at the station?

Maps of the European rail network

 

What to do when things go wrong...


Amsterdam to anywhere in the Netherlands...
Dutch double-deck train   Seats on Dutch double-deck train

Dutch double-deck intercity train at Amsterdam.

 

Upper deck seats on a double-deck intercity train.

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Amsterdam to London from €52...
  Boarding the Stena Line ferry from Harwich to Hoek van Holland for Amsterdam
 

The Stena Line superferry from Hoek van Holland to Harwich is a floating hotel...

  Comfort Class 2-berth cabin on the Stena Line ferry 'Stena Hollandica'
 

...with private cabins for every passenger, with shower, toilet & satellite TV.

Option 1, to London by train+ferry from €52...

Option 2, to London by high-speed train...

Option 3, to London by intercity train + Eurostar from €59...

Amsterdam to Hull, Newcastle, the North of England & Scotland...

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Amsterdam to Paris in 3h17 from €35, www.b-europe.com...
A Thalys train from Amsterdam to Paris

A Thalys arrived at Paris Nord.  See panorama photos inside a Thalys trainMore info about Thalys.

1st class (Comfort & Premium) seating on Thalys   2nd class seats on a Thalys train from Paris to Amsterdam

Comfort & Premium seats, 2+1 across the car.  Larger photo.

 

Standard seats, 2+2 across.  Larger photo.

Crossing the Moerdijk Bridge over the Hollands Diep

The Thalys sweeps across the Moerdijk Bridge over the Hollands Diep one lazy evening, between Rotterdam & Antwerp.

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Amsterdam to Lyon, Nice, Cannes, Marseille & other destinations in France...

Option 1, by high-speed TGV, changing trains & stations in Paris...

Option 2, by high-speed TGV, changing in Brussels & by-passing Paris.  Same-station change in Brussels avoids having to cross Paris!

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Amsterdam to Brussels from €26...

There's a choice of two very different train services from Amsterdam to Brussels, a high-speed book-in-advance one & a classic flexible one...

Option 1, by Thalys high-speed train in 1h53, dynamic pricing from €29 to €82...

A Thalys train from Amsterdam to Paris

A Thalys to Brussels at Amsterdam Centraal.  See panorama photos inside a Thalys trainMore info about Thalys.

1st class (Comfort & Premium) seating on Thalys   2nd class seats on a Thalys train from Paris to Amsterdam

Comfort & Premium seats, 2+1 across car width.  Larger photo.

 

Standard seats, 2+2 across.  Larger photo.

Crossing the Moerdijk Bridge over the Hollands Diep

The Thalys sweeps across the Moerdijk Bridge over the Hollands Diep one lazy evening, between Rotterdam & Antwerp.

Option 2, by InterCity train in 2h52 for €47.80 on the day or from €26 bought in advance...

InterCity train at Brussels

An InterCity train at Brussels Midi, jointly run by NS & SNCB (Dutch & Belgian railways)...

2nd class seats on an Amsterdam to Brussels InterCity train   1st class seats on an Amsterdam to Brussels InterCity train

InterCity train 2nd class seats.  See larger photo.

 

InterCity train 1st class seats.  See larger photo.

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Amsterdam to Bruges from €30, see the Amsterdam to Bruges page...
A Thalys train from Amsterdam to Paris

A Thalys to Brussels & Paris at Amsterdam Centraal...  See panorama photos inside a Thalys train.

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Amsterdam to Luxembourg from €35.90

Option 1, by high-speed Thalys to Brussels & InterCity (IC) train to Luxembourg - fastest, most comfortable, but inflexible, can be expensive.

Option 2, by IC trains - the cheap & flexible option...

Second class seats on board a 'Thalys' high-speed train to Cologne 1st class seats on Thalys A Thalys for Amsterdam about to leave Brussels Midi...

Standard seats.  Larger photo.

Comfort or Premium.  Larger photo.

A Thalys at Brussels...

Brussels-Luxembourg train at Brussels Midi 2nd class 1st class

A modern air-conditioned InterCity train from Brussels to Luxembourg...

2nd class on the IC train from Brussels to Luxembourg.  Larger photo.

1st class on the IC train from Brussels to Luxembourg.  Larger photo.

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Amsterdam to Basel, Zurich, Geneva & Switzerland from €39.90...

Option 1, by daytime trains via Germany from €39.90 upwards - Amsterdam to Switzerland in one day...

High-speed ICE3 train at Amsterdam   ICE2 train, 2nd class

An ICE3 at Amsterdam Centraal platform 2...

 

ICE3 2nd class seats.  Larger photo.

ICE3 train, 1st class   Lunch & beer on an ICE3 train

ICE3 1st class, with leather seats.  Larger photo.

 

ICE3 bistro car.  See sample menu.

Option 2, by daytime trains with overnight stop in Cologne - comfortable & time-effective...

Option 3, using the Hannover-Zurich Nightjet sleeper train - the time-effective sleeper option...

Option 4, by high-speed trains via Paris...  A fast option, especially to Geneva or Lausanne in western Switzerland, but involves crossing Paris.

Option 5, by Thalys to Brussels, direct TGV to Lyon, and local train to Geneva.  Saves crossing Paris, good if you need to get to Geneva.

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Amsterdam to Venice, Florence, Rome, Milan & Italy from €69...

Option 1, Amsterdam to Milan in a single day...  Milan to Verona, Venice, Florence, Rome or Naples next morning.

High-speed ICE3 train at Amsterdam   ICE2 train, 2nd class

Step 1, by ICE3 from Amsterdam to Basel...

 

ICE3 2nd class seats.  Larger photo.

ICE3 train, 1st class   Lunch & beer on an ICE3 train

ICE3 1st class, with leather seats.  Larger photo.

 

ICE3 bistro car.  See sample menu.

Restaurant car of a tilting 'Pendolino' train from Geneva to Milan.   Meal on a Swiss EuroCity train between Switzerland & Milan

Step 2, by EuroCity train from Basel to Milan via the Gotthard main line through the Alps...  This is the restaurant car.

 

Dinner in the diner?

Lunch in the Swiss-run restaurant car of the 11:25 Milan to Basel   Lake Maggiore, seen from a Milan to Basel train

You'll pass a lake or two...  This is Lake Maggiore, seen from the dining-car of the northbound 11:25 Milan to Basel over an excellent lunch of salmon tagliatelle & excellent (but expensive!) Swiss red wine.

2nd class seats on an ETR610 EuroCity train to Italy   ETR610 EuroCity train from Switzerland at Milan Centrale

2nd class seats on an ETR610, all with power sockets.  See panorama photo.

 

Buongiorno Milano!  When the EuroCity from Basel reaches Milano Centrale, you've reached Italy with no airports & no flights...

Option 2, Amsterdam to Venice by daytime trains to Munich then Nightjet sleeper train to Italy.  A time-effective option with dinner in Munich...

Amsterdam to Venice...

Amsterdam to Milan, Verona, Bologna, Florence, Rome, Naples...

High-speed ICE3 train at Amsterdam Centraal   ICE2 train, 2nd class

An ICE3 at Amsterdam Centraal platform 2...

 

ICE3 2nd class seats.  Larger photo.

ICE3 train, 1st class   Lunch & beer on an ICE3 train

ICE3 1st class, with leather seats.  Larger photo.

 

ICE3 bistro car.  See sample menu.

1 or 2 bed sleeper on Nightjet train to Italy   en suite shower & toilet in deluxe sleeper   Comfortline sleeping-car as now used on Nightjet trains

2-berth regular sleeper with washstand.  Larger photo.

 

The toilet & shower in a deluxe sleeper...

 

Nightjet train from Munich to Italy.  This is a sleeping-car on an Austrian Nightjet train...

   

Austrian couchette car or liegewagen.  Couchettes are the economical option, flat bunks with rug & pillow.

 

6-berth couchettes, the cheapest option...

 

4-berth couchettes, ideal for families.  Larger photo.

Option 3, Amsterdam to Italy via the Gotthard route - with overnight stop in Heidelberg.

Option 4, Amsterdam to Italy via Munich & the scenic Brenner Pass - with overnight stop in Munich.

Option 5, Amsterdam to Innsbruck overnight by Nightjet sleeper, then Munich to Italy by day via the Brenner Pass.  A scenic & time-effective option.

  • How to buy tickets...

    Step 1, go to the German Railways website www.bahn.de and book the ICE train from Amsterdam to Cologne.  Look for the direct ICE train with 0 changes in the search results.  You pay by credit card and print your own ticket.  Easy!

    Step 2, now use www.bahn.de again to book the Nightjet sleeper from Cologne to Innsbruck.  Look for the train marked NJ (Nightjet) with 0 changes.  You can also book this train at www.trainline.eu which is sometimes cheaper, so check both sites.  You print your own ticket.

    Step 2, now use www.loco2.com to book from Innsbruck to Florence, Rome, Naples or anywhere in Italy.  This connects to both the German and Italian ticketing systems so you can book this as one transaction all in one place.  You print your own ticket for the Austrian train and the Italian high-speed trains are ticketless, you just quote the reference on board.

    Important tip:  Before running the enquiry, you must click More options and enter either Bologna Centrale (if going to Florence, Rome or Naples) or Verona (any station) (if going to Venice on the 11:24) as a via station with a stopover duration of 45 minutes.  This ensures a robust connection and it ensure Loco2 correctly splits the booking at Bologna or Verona.

1 or 2 bed sleeper on Nightjet train to Innsbruck   en suite shower & toilet in deluxe sleeper   Comfortline sleeping-car as now used on Nightjet trains

2-berth regular sleeper with washstand.  Larger photo.

 

The toilet & shower in a deluxe sleeper...

 

Step 1, ICE to Cologne & Nightjet train to Innsbruck.  This is an ÖBB Nightjet train using cars taken over from City Night Line...

   

Austrian couchette car or liegewagen.  Couchettes are the economical option, flat bunks with rug & pillow.

 

6-berth couchettes, the cheapest option...

 

4-berth couchettes, ideal for families.  Larger photo.

The restaurant car on a EuroCity from Innsbruck arrived at Verona.  You don't need to book a table, just go along and sit down.  Dining on the move as the scenery glides by is one of the pleasures of travelling on trains like this...

Austrian second class seats   Austrian second class seats   Austrian first class seats

Second class seats, mostly in 6-seat compartments with side-corridor like this, but some cars are open-plan saloons...

 

First class leather seats.  On a few trains you'll find 6-seat compartments too....

Mountains on the Brenner route...

Scenery (and vineyards!) on the Brenner route   Scenery on the Brenner route

Vineyards, mountains and castles south of Brenner as the train heads for Trento & Verona...

Hilltop fortresses seen from the Brenner Pass train

Watch out for hilltop fortresses...  See the Brenner Pass scenery video here.

Option 6, Amsterdam to Italy by daytime trains via Paris from €64.  Fast & comfortable, although involves crossing Paris by metro or taxi...

  • You can take a morning Thalys from Amsterdam Centraal to Paris Gare du Nord in 3h20, perhaps have lunch at the celebrated Train Bleu restaurant at Paris Gare de Lyon between trains, then take the afternoon 14:41 TGV from Paris Gare de Lyon to Turin & Milan, all in one leisurely and scenic day.  Stay overnight in Turin or Milan, then continue to Florence, Venice or Rome the next day.

    Alternatively, catch an evening Thalys from Amsterdam to Paris Nord in 3h20, stop overnight in Paris, then take one of the two morning TGVs from Paris Gare de Lyon to Turin or Milan next day, changing in Turin or Milan for Florence, Venice, Rome or Naples.  What you do is up to you!

    This route is slightly faster than the route via Germany, although it means crossing Paris from the Gare du Nord to the Gare de Lyon by taxi or RER express metro.

  • Step 3, then book any onward tickets from Milan Centrale to Florence, Rome, Venice or anywhere in Italy at www.loco2.com (easy to use, recognises English place names, no added booking fee), www.italiarail.com (easy to use, recognises English place names, the small booking fee will be refunded if you email them at seat61@italiarail.com with your PNR) or Italian Railways own website www.trenitalia.com (requires Italian language place names, no booking fee, read this advice on using it first).  In most cases it's ticketless, you simply quote your PNR number on board the train.  Allow at least 45 minutes to change in Verona.

  • If you're going from Milan to Florence or Naples you may prefer to use Italo high-speed trains, www.italotreno.it as this leaves from the same station In Milan, Porta Garibaldi.

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Amsterdam to Barcelona, Madrid & Spain from €74...

Option 1:  Amsterdam to Barcelona by high-speed train in a single day with lots to see and no airports, no flights:  Breakfast in Amsterdam, lunch in Paris, dinner in Spain!  Overnight in Barcelona and on to Madrid, Alicante, Malaga or Seville next day.

  • Step 1, leave Amsterdam Centraal around 08:17 or 09:17 by high-speed Thalys train to Paris Gare du Nord taking just 3h20 with fares from €35 in 2nd class or €79 in 1st class.

  • Cross Paris by metro or taxi from the Gare du Nord to the Gare de Lyon.  Make sure you allow at least 60 minutes between trains, preferably a bit more.  Indeed, I recommend taking the earlier Thalys and have lunch at the wonderful Train Bleu restaurant inside the Gare de Lyon.

  • Step 2, travel from Paris to Barcelona by impressive 200mph double-decker TGV Duplex from €39 in 2nd class or €59 in 1st class, leaving Paris Gare de Lyon at 14:07 and arriving Barcelona Sants at 20:34.  It's a scenic and very comfortable journey, click here for the sights to see from the train on the way.

  • In July & August there's another later option:  You can leave Amsterdam Centraal by Thalys high-speed train around 11:18 arriving Paris Nord around 14:40, then leave Paris Gare de Lyon by TGV Duplex at 16:07 arriving Barcelona Sants at 22:44.

  • If you're going further into Spain, stay overnight in Barcelona, see suggested hotels near the station.

  • Step 3, next morning take an onward high-speed train from Barcelona to Madrid, Seville, Malaga, Valencia, Alicante etc.  You'll find cheap fares if you book in advance as shown below.  Regular AVE-S103 high-speed trains link Barcelona Sants with Madrid Atocha in as little as 2h30.  You'll find a direct AVE-S112 high-speed train from Barcelona to Cordoba, Seville & Malaga leaving at 08:30 arriving at lunchtime, or why not explore Barcelona and take the 15:50 arriving in the evening?  Trains link Barcelona with Madrid, Valencia & Alicante regularly through the day.

  • How to buy tickets...

    The easiest way to book from Amsterdam to Spain is using www.loco2.com as it can book Amsterdam to Barcelona all in one go as one easy transaction with print-at-home tickets for both trains.  Plus it connects to Spanish Railways (Renfe) to sell cheap onward tickets within Spain.

    You can use www.loco2.com wherever you live as all international credit cards are accepted and there's no added booking fee.

    Booking for Thalys & the TGV usually opens 120 days ahead, for AVE 60-90 days ahead. 

    First book from Amsterdam to Barcelona.  In the search results, look for an option with just 1 change.

    If you want to stopover a few hours for lunch in Paris, just click More options and enter Paris, with a duration of however many hours you want.  In fact, I'd click More options and enter Paris anyway, with zero duration, as it'll then show separate prices either side of Paris and you can upgrade to 1st class if it's cheap to do so on one leg or the other, without having to upgrade throughout.

    If you are heading for Madrid, Malaga, Seville, Cordoba, Valencia or Alicante, first add the Amsterdam-Barcelona journey to your basket, then book Barcelona to your chosen Spanish destination for the following day, add this to you basket and check out, paying for both tickets as one transaction.

    Tip: I recommend an upstairs seat on the TGV Duplex for the best views.  Loco2 shows you your seat number before you confirm & pay, and any seat number above 60 is upper deck.  If you don't get an upper deck seat, simply leave it in your basket & try again until you get an upstairs seat, then delete the tickets you don't want from your basket.

  • Alternatively, you can book each train separately, although this takes more effort and is unlikely to make it any cheaper: 

    Book the Amsterdam-Paris Thalys at www.b-europe.com or www.thalys.com with print-at-home tickets;

    Then book the Paris-Barcelona TGV at www.loco2.com or www.trainline.eu with print-at-home or collect-at-station tickets,

    Then book onward trains within Spain at www.renfe.com (see advice on using it here) or (if you have any problems at the payment stage) alternative sites www.loco2.com (in €, £ or $, no fee) or www.petrabax.com (in US$, small mark-up).

Option 2:  Amsterdam to Barcelona by high-speed train with an overnight stop in Paris...

  • How to buy tickets...

    The easiest way to book from Amsterdam to Spain is using www.loco2.com as it connects to both French Railways for Thalys & TGV and to Spanish Railways (Renfe) for onward tickets within Spain.  You can use it wherever you live as all overseas credit cards are accepted and there's no added booking fee.

    Booking for Thalys & the TGV usually opens 120 days ahead, for the AVE 60-90 days ahead. 

    First book from Amsterdam to Paris, picking any direct Thalys train you like.  Add this to your basket.

    Now book from Paris to Barcelona, Madrid, Malaga, Seville, Valencia or Alicante as one journey.  In the search results, look for Paris-Barcelona options with 0 changes, or Paris to Madrid/Malaga/Seville/Valencia/Alicante options with 1 change in Barcelona.  Add this to your basket and check out, paying for both journeys as one transaction.

    Tip: I recommend an upstairs seat on the TGV Duplex for the best views.  Loco2 shows you your seat number before you confirm & pay, and any seat number over 60 is on the upper deck.  If you don't get an upper deck seat, simply leave it in your basket & try again until you get an upstairs seat, then delete the tickets you don't want from your basket.

  • Alternatively, you can book each train separately, although this takes more effort and is unlikely to make it materially cheaper: 

    Book the Amsterdam-Paris Thalys at www.b-europe.com or www.thalys.com with print-at-home tickets.

    Then book the Paris-Barcelona TGV at www.trainline.eu with print-at-home or collect-at-station tickets.

    Book onward trains within Spain at www.renfe.com (see advice on using it here) or (if you have any problems at the payment stage) alternative sites www.loco2.com (in €, £ or $, no fee) or www.petrabax.com (in US$, small mark-up).

Second class seats on board a 'Thalys' high-speed train to Cologne 1st class seats on Thalys A Thalys for Amsterdam about to leave Brussels Midi...

2nd class (Standard).

1st class (Comfort or Premium).

1. Amsterdam-Paris by Thalys.

TGV Duplex at Paris Gare de Lyon   Upper deck second class on board a TGV Duplex.

2. Paris to Barcelona by TGV Duplex. Here, a TGV Duplex is boarding at Paris Gare de Lyon.  Watch TGV Duplex video.

 

2nd class table for 4 on TGV Duplex upper deck...

TGV Duplex cafe-bar   TGV Duplex upper deck 2nd class seats

The cafe-bar on the upper deck in car 4, serving tea, coffee, soft drinks, wine, beer, snacks & microwave-style hot dishes....

 

2nd class seats, this is upper deck seating.  There's a mix or tables for 4 and unidirectional seating.

First class on board a TGV Duplex   An TGV Duplex at Paris Est.

1st class seats on the upper deck, with a club duo on the left, a club quatre on the right.

 

A TGV Duplex at Barcelona Sants.  The red near the door indicates 1st class, pale green indicates 2nd class.

Lunch from the cafe-bar on the train to Barcelona   The hilltop cathedral at Beziers

Dinner from the cafe-bar...

 

View from the train, passing Béziers...

Mt Canigou in the Pyrenees

Mt Canigou & the Pyrenees...  One of the highest peaks in the mighty Pyrenees, the 2,784m (9,137 feet) high Mt Canigou dominates the skyline on the right all the way from Perpignan to Girona, see en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CanigouMore photos of what to see on the Paris-Barcelona train journey.

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Amsterdam to San Sebastian from €63...
  • Step 1, travel from Amsterdam Central to Paris Gare du Nord in 3h20 by high-speed Thalys train with fares from €35.  Thalys trains have 3 classes and a cafe-bar with power sockets at all seats and free WiFi.

  • Transfer by metro or taxi from Paris Nord to Paris Gare Montparnasse.  Allow at least 60 minutes between trains in Paris.

  • Step 2, travel from Paris Gare Montparnasse to Hendaye on the Spanish border by high-speed double-deck TGV Duplex Océane in around 4h40 with fares from €25 upwards.  There's a cafe-bar, all seats have power sockets & free WiFi.

  • Step 3, travel from Hendaye to San Sebastian Amara station by Euskotren metro, this little narrow gauge electric train runs every 30 minutes from early morning till around 22:30, journey time 37 minutes, fare around €2.50.  Amara station is walking distance from most hotels.

  • For example, you can usually leave Amsterdam Central at 08:15 arriving Hendaye at 17:31.  Or you can leave Amsterdam Central at 10:15 arriving Hendaye at 20:31.

  • The easiest way to buy tickets is to book from Amsterdam to Hendaye at www.loco2.com, looking for journeys with just 1 change.  If you'd like longer in Paris, click More options, enter Paris (any station) and a desired stopover duration.  You print your own tickets.  Buy your local Hendaye-San Sebastian ticket at the Euskotren station in Hendaye either from the ticket machines or staffed counter.

  • See the Paris to San Sebastian page for more details, including tips & photos of the Paris-Hendaye-San Sebastian journey, with photos showing the location of the Euskotren station at Hendaye, just outside the main French Railways station.

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Amsterdam to Lisbon, Porto & Portugal from €122...
  • Step 2, travel from Paris to Hendaye on the Spanish border by high-speed double-deck TGV Duplex Océane, leaving Paris Gare Montparnasse at 12:52 and arriving Hendaye at 17:31.  A cafe-bar is available on board, there are power sockets at all seats and free WiFi.

    Fares start at €25, check times for your date of travel at www.loco2.com or www.trainline.eu - both sites can be used by anyone from any country, no booking fee.  You print your own tickets.

  • Step 3, travel from Hendaye to Lisbon overnight by Sud Express sleeper train leaving Hendaye at 18:35 and arriving Lisbon Santa Apolonia at 07:30 next morning.  Fares start at €37 with bed in 4-bed sleeper, €132 with a bed in a 2-bed sleeper, or €148 with a bed in a 2-bed gran clase sleeper with shower & toilet.  There's a cafe-bar serving drinks, snacks & hot dishes.  See photos & information about the Sud Express.

    Book this at www.loco2.com (easy to use, prices in €, £ or $).  This connects directly to Renfe's ticketing system and give print-at-home tickets.  Booking opens 60 days ahead, but sometimes less than this, sometimes more - so give it a try, but be aware this can be the limiting factor.  If you have any trouble booking it from Hendaye to Lisbon, book it from Irun to Lisbon instead.  You can also book at www.trainline.eu.

  • For Porto, alight from the Sud Express at Coimbra B, Entroncamento or indeed Lisbon and take a train north to Porto, book this at the Portuguese railways website www.cp.pt, which is the only site that can book Portuguese trains.  Lisbon-Porto starts at just €15.

  • For the Algarve, change at Lisbon Oriente for an InterCity train to Faro, book this at the Portuguese railways website www.cp.pt.  Lisbon to Faro starts at just €15.

On the Sud Express from Hendaye to Lisbon...  See more photos & information.

To Morocco by train...   En route to Morocco by train: gran classe 2-bed sleeper (day mode)   en route to Morocco by train: Gran Classes 2-bed sleeper (night mode)   Paris to Madrid & Barcelona by trainhotel: Gran Classe sleepers have a private shower and toilet

The Sud Express, about to leave Irun on the Franco-Spanish frontier, bound for Lisbon...  Courtesy of Ron Baker See panorama photo...

 

Gran Clase sleeper, in evening mode with the seats folded out...

 

....return from the bar to find the beds made up...

 

Gran Clase private toilet & shower...

Sud Express trainhotel cafe-bar...    

The trainhotel's café-bar serves drinks & food.  Grab a barstool early, it gets crowded later on!

 

4-berth sleepers (Turista Cama) are cosy & inexpensive, converting from beds to seats.  See 360º photo of 4-berth sleeper.

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Amsterdam to Andorra...
 

The intercité de nuit overnight train from Paris to Latour de Carol has 1st class 4-berth & 2nd class 6-berth couchettes, each with lightweight sleeping-bag & mineral water...

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Amsterdam to Cologne, Frankfurt or anywhere in Germany from €19.90...
  • 2nd class fares start at just €19.90 to Cologne, from €29.90 to Frankfurt or €39.90 to anywhere else in Germany.

    1st class fares start at €49.90 to Cologne, from €59.90 to Frankfurt or €69.90 to anywhere else in Germany.

    Fares are dynamic, so book early for the cheapest prices.  Bookings now open up to 180 days in advance.

  • Simply use the German Railways website www.bahn.de to check train times, prices & buy tickets.  You print out your own ticket (on A4 paper, but US Letter size is fine) or can show it on your smartphone or laptop.  I recommend registering when prompted, rather than booking as a guest, so you can always log in and check or re-print all your bookings.

High-speed ICE3 train at Amsterdam   ICE2 train, 2nd class

An ICE3 at Amsterdam Centraal platform 2...

 

ICE3 2nd class seats.  Larger photo.

ICE3 train, 1st class   Lunch & beer on an ICE3 train

ICE3 1st class, with leather seats.  Larger photo.

 

ICE3 bar counter & standing area.  See sample menu.

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Amsterdam to Berlin from €39.90...
  • Every two hours, a comfortable smooth-riding InterCity train leaves Amsterdam Centraal for Osnabruck (3h05), Hanover (4h18) & Berlin Hauptbahnhof (6h22).  Trains are the best option on this route, they're centre to centre with no check-in or airport hassle.  The trains have plenty of space for luggage and a bistro car, so treat yourself to a meal and a beer or two.

  • Amsterdam to Berlin start at €39.90 in 2nd class or €69.90 in 1st class if you pre-book direct with German Railways at www.bahn.de.  These sparpreis fares work like air fares, cheaper in advance, more expensive close to departure.

    Booking usually opens up to 6 months ahead, you print your own ticket (on A4 paper, or US Letter size is fine) or can show it on your smartphone or laptop.  I recommend registering when prompted, rather than booking as a guest, so you can always log in and check or re-print all your bookings.

Amsterdam to Berlin InterCity train   Inside the Amsterdam to Berlin bistro car

An Amsterdam to Berlin InterCity train...

 

The bistro car on an Amsterdam to Berlin InterCity train.  Treat yourself to lunch!

1st class comparment on a Berlin to Amsterdam train   2nd class seats on a Berlin to Amsterdam train

1st class seats on these trains are usually in traditional 6-seater compartments.

 

2nd class seating on these trains is usually in open-plan saloons like this, most seats unidirectional, but with some tables for 4...

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Amsterdam to Munich from €39.90...

Option 1, by daytime trains...

  • Simply go to the German Railways website www.bahn.de to check times & prices and buy tickets online.

    I recommend registering when prompted, rather than booking as a guest, so you can always log in and check or re-print all your bookings.  You print your own ticket (on A4 paper, or US Letter size is fine) or can show it on your smartphone or laptop.

  • Top tip:  Take the Rhine Valley scenic route!   See the Rails Down the Rhine page for more information, photos & video.

    By default, the journey planner at www.bahn.de will send you the fastest way, either via Hannover or via the Cologne-Frankfurt high-speed line.  If you don't mind taking an extra hour you can use the classic curvaceous Rhine Valley route between Cologne and Frankfurt, past vineyards, mountains, castles, river boats and the legendary Lorelei Rock.

    To get this option using www.bahn.de, simply click Add intermediate stops and put Koblenz in the via box.  You'll now see options via Bonn & Koblenz in the search results, which means the Rhine Valley route.  Make sure you find seats on the left hand side of the train going south, as that's where the Rhine will be.

High-speed ICE3 train at Amsterdam   ICE2 train, 2nd class

An ICE3 at Amsterdam Centraal platform 2...

 

ICE3 2nd class seats.  Larger photo.

ICE3 train, 1st class   Lunch & beer on an ICE3 train

ICE3 1st class, with leather seats.  Larger photo.

 

ICE3 bistro car.  See sample menu.

Option 2, using the Cologne-Munich Nightjet sleeper train - the time-effective option:..

  • This is the most time-effective option.  It's fun too, with time for dinner in Cologne and it may save you a hotel bill...

  • Step 1, travel from Amsterdam to Cologne by luxurious ICE train leaving Amsterdam Centraal at 16:38 arriving Cologne Hbf at 19:15.  By all means book an earlier train and see more of Cologne.  You'll see the imposing Cologne cathedral right next to the station, and the River Rhine is only 10 minutes walk away.  There's an earlier train around 14:38 arriving Cologne at 17:18.

    Book Amsterdam to Cologne from just €19 using the German Railways website www.bahn.de and print your own ticket.

    Dinner in Cologne before boarding the sleeper?  There's no restaurant car on the sleeper train, so have dinner in Cologne.  For traditional German meal in Cologne before boarding your sleeper, try the Brauhaus Sion (www.brauhaus-sion.de), 5 minutes walk from Cologne Hauptbahnhof, or there's a restaurant in the Hauptbahnhof called the Schweinske, www.schweinske.de.  But I'd go for the Sion!

  • Step 2, travel from Cologne to Munich by direct Austrian Nightjet sleeper train leaving Cologne Hbf at 21:21 and arriving Munich Hbf at 07:12.

    This comfortable Austrian Nightjet train has an air-conditioned sleeping-car (1, 2 & 3-berth compartments with washbasin, toilets & shower at the end of the corridor, plus three deluxe compartments with 1, 2 or 3 beds with private shower & toilet), couchette cars (4 & 6 berth compartments) & ordinary seats.  The sleeper & couchette fares include a light breakfast with tea or coffee in the morning, see the Nightjet information page.

    Fares start at €59 in 6-berth couchettes, €69 in 4-berth couchettes, €99 with a bed in a 2-bed sleeper or €139 with a single-bed sleeper all to yourself.

    Book this at either the German Railways website www.bahn.de or www.trainline.eu or Austrian Railways site www.oebb.at.  Check each site as prices can differ.

1 or 2 bed sleeper on Nightjet train to Munich   en suite shower & toilet in deluxe sleeper   Comfortline sleeping-car as now used on Nightjet trains

2-berth regular sleeper with washstand.  Larger photo.

 

The toilet & shower in a deluxe sleeper...

 

A Comfortline sleeping-car, as now used on the Austrian Nightjet train from Cologne to Munich...

   

Austrian couchette car or liegewagen...

 

6-berth couchettes...

 

4-berth couchettes...

Option 3, by daytime trains with overnight stop in Cologne from €39.90.  Comfortable & time-effective...

  • Travel from Amsterdam to Cologne by comfortable ICE train, for example one leaving Amsterdam Centraal at 18:38 and arriving Cologne Hbf at 21:12.  Or take an earlier train and spend an evening in Cologne.

  • Stay overnight in Cologne.  The good & inexpensive Ibis Hotel Köln-am-Dom is ideal as it's part of Cologne Hbf itself, with an entrance to the left of the main station entrance - many of its rooms have a cathedral view.  Also near the station with good reviews are the Breslauer Hof Am Dom, Hotel Domspitzen, CityClass Hotel Europa am Dom, Hilton Cologne, Excelsior Hotel Ernst am Dom.

  • Then travel by any morning train to Munich you like:  For example, the 06:44 from Cologne Hbf arrives Munich Hbf at 11:08, you can have breakfast in the restaurant car.  Or have a leisurely breakfast at your hotel and book a later train, they leave every hour or better.

  • Fares for the whole journey start at €39.90 in 2nd class or €69.90 in 1st class if you book as explained below...

  • The cheapest way to book is at German Railways www.bahn.de, enter Amsterdam Centraal to Munich Hbf then click Add intermediate stops and put Cologne Hbf in the via box with your desired stopover duration in the hh:mm box.

    Why not allow time for a wander round Cologne, visiting the cathedral right next to the station?  You can add a stopover of up to 48h duration.  Adjust the departure time and stopover duration to get earlier or later trains for each part of the journey with a longer or shorter overnight stop in Cologne.

    You print your own ticket (on A4 paper or US Letter size is fine) or can show it on your smartphone or laptop.

  • Tip:  Take the scenic route!  If you have an extra hour, take the scenic route along the Rhine Valley from Cologne southwards, rather than the faster high-speed line.  Simply click Add intermediate stops again and enter Koblenz leaving duration as zero.  You will now be routed via the twisting Rhine Valley line past castles, vineyards, river boats, and the legendary Lorelei Rock.  Indeed, you could make Koblenz the stopover instead of Cologne if you like, booking Amsterdam to Munich with Koblenz in the via box and stopover duration say 10 hours..  Sit on the left hand side going south as that's the side the river will be.  See the Rails Down the Rhine page for more information, photos & video.

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Amsterdam to Vienna & Linz from €49.90...

Option 1, Amsterdam to Vienna in a single day from €49.90...

  • You can travel from Amsterdam to Vienna in a single chill-out day with one easy change of train, on superb ICE trains.  For example,

    Leave Amsterdam Centraal at 08:08, change Frankfurt Flughafen, arrive Vienna Hbf 18:45.

    Leave Amsterdam Centraal at 10:38, change Frankfurt (Main) Hbf, arrive Vienna Hbf 23:09.

    Take a good book and enjoy the ride, ICE trains have power sockets at all seats, free WiFi and a bistro-restaurant serving tea, coffee, wine, beer, snacks & hot dishes - in 1st class orders for food & drink are taken and served at your seat.  I highly recommend the weissbier!

  • You can book at either www.loco2.com or German Railways www.bahn.de, and print your own ticket or show it on your smartphone.  Easy!

    It's also worth checking prices for Amsterdam to Vienna at the Austrian Railways website www.oebb.at as they sometimes have cheaper prices for exactly the same trains, you also print your own ticket. 

    Fares are dynamic, book early and avoid popular days for the cheapest prices, just like flights.

  • It's possible to programme in a few hours stop in Cologne or Nuremberg if you use www.bahn.de.  Just book from Amsterdam to Vienna, but click Add intermediate stops, enter Cologne or Nuremberg, enter desired number of hours stopover (say 3) and off you go.

Berlin to Vienna ICE train

An ICE-T from Frankfurt to Vienna, at Frankfurt (Main) Hbf...

1st class table for two on the Berlin to Vienna ICE train   Lunch in the restaurant car on the Berlin to Vienna ICE train

Table for two in 1st class, my favourite configuration.  There are also tables for four in both classes.

 

Lunch in the restaurant.  In 1st class you can choose to be served at your seat.  I recommend the Erdinger Weissbier!

ICE-T train, driving cab   ICE-T train, 2nd class

You can see into the cab at each end of the train.

 

Comfortable 2nd class seats on the ICE-T to Vienna...

Scenery from the train

You'll glimpse the Inn and Danube rivers from the Frankfurt-Vienna ICE...

Option 2, using the Cologne-Vienna Nightjet sleeper train - the time-effective option...

  • This is the most convenient and time-effective option.  It's fun too, and may save a hotel bill...

  • Step 1, take a luxurious ICE train from Amsterdam to Cologne - you'll usually find an ICE leaving Amsterdam Centraal around 16:38 arriving Cologne Hbf at 19:15, but by all means take an earlier one and see something of Cologne, there's an earlier one leaving Amsterdam around 14:38.  In Cologne, you'll see the imposing cathedral right next to the station, and the banks of the Rhine are just 10 minutes walk away.

    Book this at German Railways www.bahn.de from €19.90 in 2nd class or €49.90 in 1st class and print your own ticket.  Just make sure you allow at least 45 minutes in Cologne between trains.

    Dinner in Cologne before boarding the sleeper to Vienna?  There's no restaurant or bistro car on the sleeper train, so have dinner in Cologne:  For traditional German meal in Cologne before boarding your sleeper, try the Brauhaus Sion (www.brauhaus-sion.de), 5 minutes walk from Cologne Hauptbahnhof, or there's a restaurant in the Hauptbahnhof called the Schweinske, www.schweinske.de.  But I'd go for the Sion!

  • Step 2, now take the Cologne-Vienna Nightjet sleeper train leaving Cologne Hbf at 21:21 and arriving Vienna Hbf at 08:27.

    Fares start at just €59 in 6-berth couchettes, €69 in 4-berth couchettes, €99 in a 2-bed sleeper or €139 in a single-bed sleeper if you book well in advance.  Breakfast is included in the fare in couchettes & sleepers.  Deluxe sleepers with en suite shower & toilet are also  available.  See the Nightjet information page.

    Book this train at either the German railways website www.bahn.de or www.trainline.eu.  I suggest checking both sites as prices can differ.  Bookings normally open up to 6 months ahead and you simply print your own ticket.

  • The Man in Seat61 says:  "This is a time-effective option, and the Austrian-run Cologne-Vienna sleeper is one of my favourite trains.  Not just because its Austrian couchette cars and sleeping-car are amongst the nicest in Europe, but because of the wonderful evening ride along the Rhine Valley as night falls.  In the evening light or moonlight depending on the time of year, you'll pass castles and vineyards along the sparkling waters of the Rhine, passing the legendary Lorelei Rock.  You can recognise the Lorelei from the word 'Lorelei' painted in black on a white background just above the water line on the opposite bank, and from the two flags flying on its summit.  And if you have the chance for dinner and a beer at the Brauhaus Sion before boarding, go for it... "

High-speed ICE3 train at Amsterdam   ICE2 train, 2nd class

Step 1:  Amsterdam to Cologne by high-speed ICE.  More ICE info.

 

ICE3 2nd class seats.  All seats have power sockets & free WiFi.  Larger photo.

ICE3 train, 1st class   Lunch & beer on an ICE3 train

ICE3 1st class with leather seats.  Larger photo.

 

ICE3 bistro car.  See sample menu.

1 or 2 bed sleeper on Nightjet train to Vienna   en suite shower & toilet in deluxe sleeper   Comfortline sleeping-car as now used on Nightjet trains

2-berth regular sleeper with washstand.  Larger photo.

 

The toilet & shower in a deluxe sleeper...

 

A Comfortline sleeping-car, as now used on the Austrian Nightjet train from Cologne to Vienna.  More information about Nightjets.

   

Austrian couchette car or liegewagen...

 

6-berth couchettes...

 

4-berth couchettes...

As night falls, the train to Vienna crosses the Rhine at Mainz

As night falls, the sleeper train speeds along the Rhine Valley.  Above, crossing the Rhine at Mainz...

Option 3, by daytime trains from €49.90 with overnight stop in Cologne or Nuremberg ...

  • If you'd rather break up the trip with an overnight stop, you can do so in either Cologne or Nuremberg. 

  • Both cities are worth building in a few hours to look around - in Cologne the cathedral is right next to the station, and in Nuremberg there's a pleasant old town, a railway museum and the historic Party Rally Grounds (take tram 9 from outside Nuremberg Hbf). 

  • Simply book each leg of the journey separately at either www.loco2.com or www.bahn.de or you can use www.bahn.de to book Amsterdam to Vienna, but click Add intermediate stops, enter Cologne or Nuremberg, enter desired number of hours stopover (say 10) and off you go.  You can programme in up to 2 stopovers each up to 48 hours, and still get end to end sparpreis tickets.

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Amsterdam to Salzburg, Innsbruck & Austria from €39.90...

Option 1, by daytime trains from €39.90...

  • You can travel from Amsterdam to Salzburg or Innsbruck in a single day with various departures to choose from.  For example,

    Leave Amsterdam Centraal at 06:38, change at Düsseldorf & Munich, arrive Salzburg 15:59.

    Leave Amsterdam Centraal at 09:00, change at Duisburg & Munich, arrive Salzburg 19:42.

    Leave Amsterdam Centraal at 12:38, change at Düsseldorf & Munich, arrive Salzburg 22:02.

    The main part of this journey is on a superb German ICE train with bistro-restaurant, power sockets at all seats & free WiFi.

  • To check times & buy tickets if you're going to Salzburg, simply use the German Railways website www.bahn.de to book from Amsterdam Centraal to Salzburg Hbf.  You print your own ticket (on A4 paper, or US Letter size is fine) or you can show it on your smartphone or laptop.  Fares are dynamic, book early & avoid popular dates for the cheapest prices, just like booking flights.

  • To check times & buy tickets if going to Innsbruck or anywhere else in Austria, you must split the booking like this:  First find your train times for the whole journey by asking the journey planner at www.bahn.de for Amsterdam to Innsbruck or anywhere in Austria, find a suitable journey in the search results and make a note of the trains you want.  It won't show any fares at this stage, as neither end of the journey is in Germany (remember this is the German Railways website you're using).  Then book the journey in two stages by splitting it at a key interchange point within Germany, for example first book Amsterdam-Munich, then book a separate journey from Munch to Innsbruck.  This way, you'll benefit from any cheap Netherlands-Germany fares from €39 on one section and cheap Germany-Austria fares from €19 on the other.

Option 2, via the Cologne-Munich-Innsbruck Nightjet sleeper train - the time-effective option:..

  • This is the most convenient and time-effective option.  It's fun too, and may save you a hotel bill...

  • Step 1, travel from Amsterdam to Cologne by luxurious ICE train leaving Amsterdam Centraal around 16:38 and arriving Cologne Hbf at 19:15.  By all means book an earlier train and see something of Cologne, there's an earlier one leaving around 14:40.  You'll see the imposing Cologne cathedral right next to the station, and cafes or bars next to the River Rhine are just 10 minutes walk away.

    Book this leg from just €19.90 in 2nd class or €49.90 in 1st class at the German Railways website www.bahn.de.  You print your own ticket.

    Dinner in Cologne before boarding the sleeper to Vienna?  There's no restaurant or bistro car on the sleeper train, so have dinner in Cologne.  For traditional German meal in Cologne before boarding your sleeper, try the Brauhaus Sion (www.brauhaus-sion.de), 5 minutes walk from Cologne Hbf, or there's a restaurant in the Hauptbahnhof called the Schweinske, www.schweinske.de.  But I'd go for the Sion!

  • Step 2 if going to Innsbruck:  Travel from Cologne to Innsbruck by direct Nightjet sleeper train leaving Cologne Hbf at 21:21 and arriving Innsbruck at 09:14.

    This modern Austrian Nightjet sleeper train has an air-conditioned sleeping-car (1, 2 & 3-berth compartments with washbasin, plus three deluxe compartments with 1, 2 or 3 beds with private shower & toilet), couchette cars (4 & 6 berth compartments) & ordinary seats.  The sleeper & couchette fares include a light breakfast with tea or coffee in the morning.

    Fares start at €59 in 6-berth couchettes, €69 in 4-berth couchettes, €99 with a bed in a 2-bed sleeper or €139 with a single-bed sleeper.

    Book this using either the German railways website www.bahn.de or www.trainline.eu.  I suggest checking both sites as prices can differ.

  • Step 2 if going to Salzburg:  Travel from Cologne to Munich by direct Nightjet sleeper train leaving Cologne Hbf at 21:21 and arriving Munich Hbf at 07:12.  Change in Munich for a train to Salzburg, these leave regularly, you should get to Salzburg around 09:05.

    Alternatively, the same 21:21 Nightjet sleeper from Cologne has another portion arriving Wels at 06:16, change in Wels for Salzburg arriving 07:48.  This is faster, but you may prefer a longer sleep via Munich!

    This modern Austrian Nightjet sleeper train has an air-conditioned sleeping-car (1, 2 & 3-berth compartments with washbasin, plus three deluxe compartments with 1, 2 or 3 beds with private shower & toilet), couchette cars (4 & 6 berth compartments) & ordinary seats.  The sleeper & couchette fares include a light breakfast with tea or coffee in the morning.

    Fares start at €59 in 6-berth couchettes, €69 in 4-berth couchettes, €99 with a bed in a 2-bed sleeper or €139 with a single-bed sleeper.

    Book from Cologne to Salzburg using either the German railways website www.bahn.de or www.trainline.eu.  I recommend checking both sites as prices can differ.  It should book Cologne to Salzburg as one transaction, but if you have any problems split the booking into separate Cologne-Munich and Munich-Salzburg bookings.  At www.bahn.de, click Add intermediate stops and enter Munich if you want the route via Munich rather than Wels.

  • Rhine Valley in the moonlight...  The Cologne-Munich-Innsbruck sleeper train takes the classic rail route alongside the river Rhine.  In the dying  evening light in summer or moonlight in winter, you'll pass castles and vineyards along the sparkling waters of the Rhine, passing the legendary Lorelei Rock.  You can recognise the Lorelei from the word 'Lorelei' painted in black on a white background just above the water line on the opposite bank, and from the two flags flying on its summit.  See the Rails Down the Rhine page for more information, photos & video.

Option 3, by daytime trains with overnight stop in Cologne.  Comfortable & time-effective...

  • Travel from Amsterdam to Cologne, by comfortable ICE train from €19.90, for example one leaving Amsterdam Centraal at 18:38 and arriving Cologne Hbf at 21:12.

  • Stay overnight in Cologne.  The good & inexpensive Ibis Hotel Köln-am-Dom is ideal as it's part of Cologne Hbf itself, with an entrance to the left of the main station entrance - many of its rooms have a cathedral view.  Also near the station with good reviews are the Breslauer Hof Am Dom, Hotel Domspitzen, CityClass Hotel Europa am Dom, Hilton Cologne, Excelsior Hotel Ernst am Dom.

  • Then take any morning train to Munich you like:  The 06:44 from Cologne Hbf will get you to Salzburg at 12:58 with breakfast on board in the restaurant, or have a leisurely breakfast at your hotel and book a later train, they leave at least hourly.  Fares from €39.90 in 2nd class or €69.90 in 1st class.

  • If you're going to Salzburg, the cheapest way to book this is to use www.bahn.de to book from Amsterdam to Salzburg as one journey, but click Add intermediate stops and put Cologne Hbf in the via box with your desired stopover duration in the hh:mm box.  Why not allow time for a wander round Cologne, visiting the cathedral right next to the station, you can add a stopover of up to 48h duration.  Adjust the departure time and stopover duration to get earlier or later trains for each part of the journey with a longer or shorter overnight stop in Cologne.

  • If you're going to Innsbruck or elsewhere in Austria, you need to split the booking like this  First use www.bahn.de to book Amsterdam to Cologne then use it again to book from Cologne to your Austrian destination.

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Amsterdam to Copenhagen from €49.90, Amsterdam to Stockholm from €68...

The City Night Line sleeper train from Amsterdam to Copenhagen was discontinued in 2014, but you can easily travel by comfortable daytime trains...

Option 1, Amsterdam to Copenhagen in a single day from €49.90.  Onwards to Stockholm next day...

  • You can travel from Amsterdam Centraal to Copenhagen in a single chill-out day, with several departures to choose from.  For example,

    Leave Amsterdam Centraal at 07:00, an easy change of train at Duisburg & Hamburg, arriving Copenhagen at 18:26.

    Leave Amsterdam Centraal at 11:00, an easy change of train at Osnabrück & Hamburg, arriving Copenhagen at 22:26.

    Take a good book, sit back and enjoy the ride.  The Hamburg to Copenhagen trains go onto a ferry between Puttgarden & Rødby, one of the few places in Europe where trains still get shunted onto ships.  It's a fascinating experience in its own right - you must leave the train and go upstairs into the ship's passenger accommodation during the 50-minute crossing, but you can leave your luggage on the train.  See photos, tips & information for the Hamburg to Copenhagen journey.

    All these trains have catering cars or refreshment trolleys serving drinks, wine, beer, snacks & hot dishes.

  • To find train times & buy tickets...

    You can book from Amsterdam or anywhere in the Netherlands to Copenhagen as one journey at either www.loco2.com or the German Railways website www.bahn.de.  You print your own ticket (on A4 paper, or US Letter size is fine) or can show it on your smartphone or laptop.  Book early & avoid busy dates for the cheapest prices.

  • If you're going to Malmö...

    Catch the next Öresund train from Copenhagen to Malmö, these run every 20 minutes taking 34 minutes.  You can buy a Copenhagen-Malmo ticket at the station, no pre-booking required, but you can save a few euros by booking to Malmo rather then just Copenhagen when using Loco2 or Bahn.de, as German Railways offer through tickets.

  • If you're going to Stockholm...

    Stay overnight in Copenhagen, hotels in Copenhagen near the station with good reviews include the Nimb Hotel (5-star), Radisson Blu Royal Hotel (5-star), Axel Guldsmeden (4-star), Andersen Boutique Hotel, First Hotel Mayfair (3-star), Hotel Ansgar (3-star), City Hotel Nebo (2-star).

    Take an X2000 train to Stockholm next morning.  There's usually a train at 08:23 arriving Stockholm 13:37, or later trains through the day.

    To buy tickets, the straightforward way is to book from Copenhagen to Stockholm at either www.sj.se (in Krona, can struggle with some overseas credit cards, no booking fee) or GoEuro.com (in Krona, €, £ or $, small booking fee, quick & easy to use and readily accepts overseas credit cards).  You print your own ticket or can show it on your smartphone.  Fares start at as little as €28 if you book well in advance.

    However, the clever way to buy tickets is this:  Work out what trains you want by doing a dummy booking from Amsterdam to Copenhagen.  Then book from Amsterdam to Hamburg and print your ticket.  Then book from Hamburg to Stockholm, clicking Add intermediate stops and entering Copenhagen in the via box and (say) 11:00 in the 'hh:mm' box.  This way you'll get a Sparpreis Sweden fare from just €39 with an overnight stopover in Copenhagen built in.  Adjust the stopover time until you get the trains you want.  Click here to open bahn.de all set up with the correct parameters - enter your date of travel and adjust departure point & stopover time to suit.  Make sure you allow plenty of time between trains in Hamburg, as you'll no longer be on a through ticket.

  • If you're going to Gothenburg...

    Stay overnight in Copenhagen and travel to Gothenburg by Öresund Link train next morning.  These run every hour, journey time 4h05.  You can buy a Copenhagen-Gothenburg ticket at the station, no reservation necessary.

    However, the clever way to buy tickets is this:  Instead of booking from Amsterdam to Copenhagen, book from Amsterdam to Hamburg, then from Hamburg to Gothenburg (= Göteborg Central), clicking Add intermediate stops and entering Copenhagen in the via box and (say) 11:00 in the 'hh:mm' box.  This way you'll get a Hamburg-Gothenburg Sparpreis Sweden fare from just €39 with an overnight stopover in Copenhagen built in.  Adjust the stopover time until you get the onward trains you want.  Click here to open bahn.de all set up with the correct parameters - enter your date of travel and adjust departure point & stopover time to suit.  Make sure you allow plenty of time between trains in Hamburg, as you'll no longer be on a through ticket.

  • If you're going to Oslo...

    Travel from Copenhagen to Gothenburg by Öresund Link train as above.  Trains then run every couple of hours from Gothenburg to Oslo, you can check times and buy tickets at www.sj.se or (if you have any problems) www.acprail.com or www.snalltaget.se.  Or book to Gothenburg using the clever way described above, then simply add a Gothenburg-Oslo ticket booked at either www.nsb.no or www.sj.se.

A Danish IC3 train at Copenhagen station...   1st class seats on a Danish IC3 train

A Danish IC3 train at Copenhagen station...

 

1st class seats on an IC3 train...

2nd class seats on a Danish IC3 train   IC3 train to Copenhagen at Hamburg

2nd class seats on an IC3 train...

 

Boarding a train to Copenhagen in Hamburg.

Train boarding ferry

The view from your seat as the IC3 train slowly runs onto the Puttgarden-Rødby ferry.  Courtesy of Adina Bogert-O'Brien.  Interior & Hamburg photos above courtesy of DiscoverbyRail.com.

125 mph tilting 'X2000' from Copenhagen to Stockholm, at Copenhagen station 2nd class seats on the X2000 train from Copenhagen to Stockholm The self-service buffet on the X2000 train from Copenhagen to Stockholm...

A 125 mph X2000 train from Copenhagen to Stockholm.

 

2nd class seating on the X2000.  All seats have power sockets for laptops & mobiles...

 

Self-service buffet car on the X2000 to Stockholm.

More info on X2000 trains

Winter scenery fro a Copenhagen-Stockholm train

Winter scenery from a train between Copenhagen & Stockholm. Courtesy of Radoslav Sharapanov

Option 2, by daytime trains with overnight stop in Hamburg.  Amsterdam-Copenhagen from €49.90, Amsterdam-Stockholm from €59.90...

  • Day 1, travel from Amsterdam to Hamburg leaving Amsterdam Centraal at 17:00, changing at Osnabrück to arrive Hamburg Hbf at 22:14.  But by all means take an earlier train and have a leisurely evening in Hamburg, trains leave Amsterdam every couple of hours through the day.

    Book this from €29.90 in 2nd class or €59.90 in 1st class at www.bahn.de or www.loco2.com.  You print your own ticket (on A4 paper, or US Letter size is fine) or can show it on your smartphone or laptop.

  • Stay overnight in Hamburg.  Suggested hotels in Hamburg next to the Hauptbahnhof with good reviews include (starting with the cheapest) the Hotel Continental Novum, Hotel Furst Bismarck, Hotel Europaischer Hof, Hotel Atlantic Kempinski.

  • Day 2, travel from Hamburg to Copenhagen by EuroCity train, leaving Hamburg Hbf at 09:28 arriving Copenhagen at 14:26.  If you're only going as far as Copenhagen, book from Hamburg to Copenhagen from €29.90 in 2nd class or €59.90 in 1st class at www.bahn.de and print your own ticket or you can show it on your smartphone or laptop.

    Tip:  It can be cheaper to book Amsterdam to Copenhagen in one go from €49.90.  At www.bahn.de click Add intermediate stops, enter Hamburg Hbf and a stopover duration of (say) 11 hours in the hh:mm box and run the enquiry.  Adjust departure time and stopover duration to get the trains you want.

    The Hamburg to Copenhagen EuroCity trains go onto a ferry between Puttgarden & Rødby, one of the few places in Europe where trains still get shunted onto ships.  It's an interesting experience in its own right - you must leave the train and go upstairs into the ship's passenger accommodation during the crossing.  See photos, tips & information for the Hamburg to Copenhagen journey.

  • If you're going to Stockholm, travel onwards from Copenhagen to Stockholm by X2000 train.  If you take the 09:28 from Hamburg you'll have time for a late lunch in Copenhagen before the 16:23 X2000 arriving Stockholm Central at 21:37.  Book from Hamburg to Stockholm as one transaction from €39.90 at www.bahn.de - use this special link if you want the 09:28 - looking for suitable departures with 1 change marked ICE, X2 or EC, X2 (X2000s are shown as X2 on bahn.de for some reason).

  • If you're going to Malmö or Gothenburg, travel from Copenhagen to Malmö or Gothenburg by Öresund Link train, these run several times each hour to Malmö, journey time 35 minutes, and once an hour to Gothenburg, journey time 3h48.  Book from Hamburg to Malmö or Gothenburg as one transaction at www.bahn.de (Gothenburg is listed as Göteborg Central).

  • If you're going to Oslo, travel from Copenhagen to Gothenburg as shown above.  Trains then run every couple of hours from Gothenburg to Oslo, you can check times at www.bahn.de and buy at the station or at www.sj.se or (if you have any problems) www.acprail.com or www.snalltaget.se.

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Amsterdam to Oslo & Norway...

Option 1, via Hamburg & Copenhagen - by train all the way...

Option 2, Amsterdam to Oslo via the Kiel-Oslo Color Line cruise ferry - the most comfortable way to Oslo...

  • Step 1, travel from Amsterdam to Kiel on any suitable train from €39.90, for example leaving Amsterdam Centraal around 13:00 arriving Kiel around 19:34 with two easy changes in Osnabruck and Hamburg. 

    Check times & buy tickets at the German Railways site www.bahn.de

  • Stay overnight in Kiel.  In Kiel it's just a 5-6 minute walk from Kiel Hbf to the Color Line ferry terminal, but allow several hours between trains and ferry for the ferry check-in and in case of any delay.

  • Step 2, sail from Kiel to Oslo by luxurious overnight Color Line ferry, with a full range of en suite cabins, suites, bars, restaurants and lounges.  The m/v Magic or m/v Fantasy normally sails at 14:00 arriving Oslo at 10:00 next morning. 

    Check times & buy tickets online at the seat61 Ferry Shop or www.colorline.com.

Germany to Oslo Color Line ferry at Kiel

This photo is taken from the exit of Kiel station, so you can see how close the ferry is.  It's a 5-6 minute walk across the harbour, with a street lift up to a connecting walkway which takes you to the ferry terminal. If you have reserved one of what Color Line call their "5 star suites", check in at the desk rather than the machines and you'll be directed to a special lounge to wait with free tea, coffee, juice, snacks & WiFi.  You'll also have priority boarding of the ship.  Photos courtesy of Andrew Leo.

Boarding the ferry in Kiel

Boarding the Color Line ferry to Oslo in Kiel...

Kiel to Oslo ferry, Color Class suite   Kiel to Oslo ferry, restaurant

A 5 Star Suite on the ferry...

 

More cruise liner than ferry!  The restaurant.

View from Color Line ferry to Oslo

Wake up to this....

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Amsterdam to Helsinki & Finland...
  • You can travel from Amsterdam to Stockholm as shown above then take a ferry to Helsinki as shown here, but you'll probably find it easier to take a direct ferry from Germany to Helsinki.

  • Day 1, travel from Amsterdam to Travemünde on any suitable train from €39.90, for example leaving Amsterdam Centraal around 13:00 arriving Travemünde in the evening - check times & buy tickets at the German Railways site www.bahn.de.  Allow plenty of time in Travemünde for the ferry check-in.

  • Day 2, sail from Travemünde to Helsinki by luxurious Finnlines ferry arriving day 3 or in the morning on day 4, check times & sailing dates and book online at www.finnlines.com.

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Amsterdam to Prague & the Czech Republic from €49.90...

The City Night Line sleeper train from Cologne to Prague was sadly discontinued from 11 December 2016.

Option 1, Amsterdam to Prague by train in a single day - why not spend a few hours in Berlin?

  • Fares start at €49.90 in 2nd class or €79.90 in 1st class.

  • Buy tickets at the German Railways website www.bahn.de.  You print your own ticket or can show it on your smartphone or laptop.  Easy!

    Top tip:  To find the easiest journeys, click Add intermediate stops, enter Berlin Hbf, you can enter a stopover duration if you like.  Then click More means of transport and change admit changes to direct connections in both sections.  You will now see only convenient journeys with one easy change of train at Berlin's magnificent hauptbahnhof.

    It's also worth checking Amsterdam-Prague prices at the Czech Railways website www.cd.cz as they sometimes have cheaper prices than the Germans for exactly the same trains, and you also print your own ticket.  See my tips for using cd.cz.

  • Why not build in some time in Berlin?  This breaks up the trip, there are left luggage lockers available and Berlin Hbf is just 10-15 min walk from the Reichstag & Brandenburg Gate, so even a couple of hours stopover is a worthwhile experience.  If you took the 07:00 from Amsterdam, you could spend 13:22-16:59 exploring Berlin, reaching Prague at 21:26.  To book a ticket with a stopover, simply use www.bahn.de, click Add intermediate stops, enter Berlin and enter a desired stopover duration in the hh:mm box.  With the cheap advance tickets, you can programme in up to 2 stopovers, each up to 48 hours.  You can't add a stopover if you use cd.cz, unless you buy each leg of the trip separately of course.

Option 2, by day trains with an overnight stop in Berlin - more time-effective, with a chance to see Berlin.

Amsterdam to Berlin InterCity train   Inside the Amsterdam to Berlin bistro car

Step 1:   Amsterdam to Berlin InterCity train...

 

The bistro car on an Amsterdam to Berlin InterCity train.  Treat yourself to lunch!

1st class comparment on a Berlin to Amsterdam train   2nd class seats on a Berlin to Amsterdam train

1st class seats on these trains are usually in traditional 6-seater compartments.

 

2nd class seating on these trains is usually in open-plan saloons like this, most seats unidirectional, but with some tables for 4...

 

Czech restaurant car on a Berlin to Prague train   Lunch in the restaurant car between Berlin & Prague

Step 2, Berlin to Prague by EuroCity train...  A meal in the Czech restaurant car as the Berlin-Prague express snakes along the beautiful Elbe river south of Dresden.  Most Berlin-Prague trains use Czech carriages like this, a few use Hungarian air-conditioned carriages.  See more photos, tips & info for the Berlin to Prague train ride.  Photo courtesy of Philip Dyer-Perry.

More cliffs along the river Elbe

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Amsterdam to Bratislava & Slovakia from €79...

Option 1, by daytime train to Berlin then sleeper train to Bratislava.  A comfy & time-effective option...

  • Step 2, travel from Berlin to Bratislava on the EuroNight sleeper train Metropol leaving Berlin Hbf at 18:40 and arriving Bratislava Hlavna at 05:50, sleeping in a comfortable Hungarian sleeping or couchette car, see the Hungarian sleeping-car video.  This trains starts running from 9 December 2018.

    Fares start at €49 with a couchette in a 6-berth compartment, €59 with a couchette in a 4-berth compartment, €79 with a bed in a 3-bed sleeper with washbasin, €99 in a 2-bed sleeper with washbasin or €129 in a single-bed sleeper with washbasin.  Buy tickets for this train at www.bahn.de.

Option 2, by daytime trains with overnight stop in Berlin...

  • Day 1, take the Amsterdam to Berlin InterCity train leaving Amsterdam Centraal at 15:00 and arriving Berlin Hbf around 21:22 with fares from €39.90.  Or by all means take one of the earlier trains at 11:00 or 13:00 and spend some time in Berlin.  Book this train at www.bahn.de.

  • Stay overnight in Berlin.  The 3-star Meininger Hotel or InterCity Hotel are ideal as they are right next to Berlin Hbf and a 10-minute walk from the Reichstag or a 15-minute walk from the Brandenburg Gate, relatively inexpensive and get good reviews.  If you want to push the boat out, try the famous Hotel Adlon Kempinski Berlin is right next to the Brandenburg Gate, 15 min walk from the station.  More hotels in Berlin.  If you're on a tight budget, see www.hostelworld.com.

  • Day 2, take a Berlin-Bratislava EuroCity train from €39.90 next morning also booking this at www.bahn.de - there's an 06:59 with a change in Prague arriving Bratislava Hlavna around 15:50, or a direct EuroCity train with restaurant car leaves Berlin at 08:59 and arrives Bratislava Hlavna at 17:50.  You should sit on the left hand side going south as beyond Dresden the train follows the scenic Elbe river, a treat.  See the scenery & EuroCity train photos here.

Option 3, by sleeper train via Vienna...

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Amsterdam to Budapest from €78...

Option 1, by daytime train to Berlin then Hungarian sleeper train to Budapest.  A comfy & time-effective option...

  • Step 2, travel from Berlin to Budapest on the EuroNight sleeper train Metropol leaving Berlin Hbf at 18:40 and arriving Budapest Keleti at 08:35, sleeping in a comfortable Hungarian sleeping or couchette car, see the Hungarian sleeping-car video.  This trains starts running from 9 December 2018.

    Fares start at €49 with a couchette in a 6-berth compartment, €59 with a couchette in a 4-berth compartment, €79 with a bed in a 3-bed sleeper with washbasin, €99 in a 2-bed sleeper with washbasin or €129 in a single-bed sleeper with washbasin.  Buy tickets for this train at www.bahn.de.

Option 2, by daytime trains to Munich then Hungarian sleeper train to Budapest.  Another time-effective option with dinner in Munich...

  • Step 1, travel from Amsterdam to Munich by comfortable daytime ICE trains with bistro-restaurant car, power sockets at all seats & free WiFi.  For example, you can leave Amsterdam Centraal around 12:38, change in Frankfurt to arrive Munich Hbf around 20:07, with fares from €39.90 in 2nd class or €69.90 in 1st class.

    Tip:  Have dinner in Munich before boarding your sleeper, for typical Bavarian food & beer try www.augustinerkeller.de at Arnulfstrasse 52, to the north side of Munich Hbf.

  • Step 2, travel from Munich to Budapest on the comfortable Hungarian sleeper train Kalman Imre leaving Munich Hbf at 23:20 and arriving Budapest Keleti at 09:24, sleeping in a comfortable Hungarian sleeping or couchette car, see the Hungarian sleeping-car video.  Fares start at €59 with a couchette in a 6-berth compartment, €69 with a couchette in a 4-berth compartment, €79 with a bed in a 3-bed sleeper with washbasin, €99 in a 2-bed sleeper with washbasin or €129 in a single-bed sleeper with washbasin.

  • To buy tickets, first book the sleeper from Munich to Budapest using www.bahn.de and simply print your own ticket.  Then book a connecting Amsterdam-Munich journey also using www.bahn.de with print your-own tickets, allowing at least an hour to change trains in Munich in case of any delay.

High-speed ICE3 train at Amsterdam   ICE2 train, 2nd class

An ICE3 at Amsterdam Centraal platform 2...

 

ICE3 2nd class seats.  Larger photo

ICE3 train, 1st class   Lunch & beer on an ICE3 train

ICE3 1st class, with leather seats.  Larger photo.

 

ICE3 bistro car.  See sample menu.

The sleeper train to Budapest   Sleeper compartment in the Hungarian sleeping-car from Munich to Budapest

Step 2, take the sleeper train to Budapest.  Here, the Kalman Imre is about to leave Munich...

 

2-bed sleeper. Larger photo

6-berth couchettes on train to Budapest   4-berth couchettes on train to Budapest   Couchette car on the Kalman Imre to Budapest

6-berth couchettes...

 

4-berth couchettes

 

Hungarian couchette car at Munich

Option 3  using the Cologne-Vienna Nightjet sleeper train - another time-effective option with dinner in Cologne...

Option 4, by daytime trains with overnight stop in Munich.  If you prefer daytime trains and a hotel to sleepers...

  • Day 1, travel from Amsterdam Centraal to Munich Hbf on any daytime trains you like, from €39 booked at www.bahn.de.  There are many options, including ones taking 7h52 by comfortable German ICE train with one easy change at Düsseldorf.  You can leave Amsterdam Centraal as late in the day as 14:38.  You print your own ticket (on A4 paper, or US Letter size is fine) or can show it on your smartphone or laptop.

  • Stay overnight in Munich.  Try the Sofitel Munich Beyerpost, Eden Hotel Wolff, InterCity Hotel or (budget) the Pension Locarno, all right next to the station with great reviews.

  • Day 2, travel from Munich to Budapest by modern Austrian railjet train in 7h15 from €39.90 in 2nd class or €69.90 in 1st class also booked at www.bahn.de.  Trains leave every 2 hours, the 07:23 from Munich Hbf will get you to Budapest Keleti at 14:19, but by all means have a leisurely breakfast and take the 09:30 departure arriving 16:19.  Railjets have a bistro-restaurant car, power sockets at all seats & free WiFi. You print your own ticket, but in this case the ticket must be printed it cannot be shown on a screen.

    Look out for views of Salzburg citadel as you cross the river Salzach approaching Salzburg station.  If you like, you can incorporate a stopover in Salzburg of a few hours or a day or two at no extra charge using the Add intermediate stops feature.  Left luggage lockers are available.

Option 5, by daytime trains with overnight stop in Berlin...

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Amsterdam to Brasov & Bucharest from €117...
En suite toilet & shower on EuroNight sleeper train Ister to Bucharest   Single-berth sleeper on the EuroNight sleeper train 'Ister' to Bucharest   EuroNight sleeper train 'Ister' from Budapest to Bucharest

En suite toilet & shower in deluxe sleeper.

A sleeper set up as a  single-berth...

 

The modern air-conditioned Romanian sleeping-car.  Photos courtesy Andy Brabin.

Couchette car on the Ister EuroNight train from Budapest to Bucharest  

Enjoy breakfast in the bar-bistro eastbound, or an evening beer westbound.  The bar-bistro is attached to the Ister between Simeria & Bucharest.  Photos courtesy of Philip Dyer-Perry.

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Amsterdam to Ljubljana & Slovenia or Zagreb & Croatia from €72...

Option 1, using the Cologne-Munich Nightjet sleeper train then scenic EuroCity train to Ljubljana & Zagreb...

  • Step 1, travel from Amsterdam to Cologne by ICE3 train, leaving Amsterdam Centraal at 16:38 arriving Cologne Hbf at 19:15.  You've now time for dinner in Cologne.

    Book this train at German Railways www.bahn.de from €19.90 in 2nd class or €49.90 in 1st class and print your own ticket.

  • Step 2, travel overnight from Cologne to Munich by Nightjet sleeper train, leaving Cologne Hbf at 21:21 and arriving Munich Hbf at 07:12 next morning.  This sleeper train has sleeping-cars with 1, 2 & 3 bed compartments with washbasin, 1, 2 & 3 bed deluxe compartments with shower & toilet, and 4 & 6 berth couchettes. 

    Fares from €59 with couchette in 6-berth, €69 with couchette in 4-berth, €99 with a bed in a cosy 2-bed sleeper or €139 in a single-bed sleeper. 

    Book this sleeper train at www.bahn.de & print your own ticket.  You can also book at www.trainline.eu, this gets its prices from the Austrian Railways ticketing system so can sometimes be cheaper.  It also offers print-your-own tickets.

  • Step 2, now leave Munich Hbf at 08:17 by air-conditioned Austrian railjet train, there's a quick and simple cross-platform change at Villach onto a waiting Slovenian & Croatian EuroCity train called the Sava, arriving Lesce-Bled on Lake Bled at 13:50, Ljubljana at 14:31 and Zagreb at 17:10.  Book this journey online at www.bahn.de with fares from €39.  Ignore any departures marked Bus in the search results as these are buses.  The train ride is a wonderfully scenic journey across Austria and along the beautiful River Sava between Ljubljana and Zagreb, enjoy it!

    Booking tip:  If you don't see any cheap fares from Munich to Ljubljana or Zagreb using bahn.de (for example, if it says No special fares available), try going to the Austrian Railways website www.oebb.at and booking from Salzburg to Ljubljana or Zagreb on exactly the same train (the train leaves Salzburg about 1h55 after leaving Munich), then using www.oebb.at again to add a ticket from Munich to Salzburg on the same train.

Option 2, by daytime ICE train to Munich, overnight stop, then scenic EuroCity train to Ljubljana & Zagreb...

  • Step 1, travel from Amsterdam to Munich by luxurious ICE trains, there are various departures every day, the best journeys are the ones with just one change.   You can leave Amsterdam Centraal as late as 14:38 or so, change at Düsseldorf and arrive Munich Hbf around 22:06, but by all means take an earlier train and have a leisurely evening in Munich.  Fares start at just €39.90 in 2nd class or €69.90 in 1st class, booked online at www.bahn.de (the German Railways website, for residents of any country, you simply print your own ticket).

  • Stay overnight in Munich.  The Sofitel Munich Beyerpost, Eden Hotel Wolff, InterCity Hotel or (budget) the Pension Locarno are all right next to the station with great reviews.

  • Step 2, now depart Munich Hbf at 08:17 by air-conditioned Austrian railjet train, there's a quick and simple cross-platform change at Villach onto a waiting Slovenian & Croatian EuroCity train called the Sava, arriving Lesce-Bled on Lake Bled at 13:50, Ljubljana at 14:31 and Zagreb at 17:10.

    If you'd like a morning in Munich, there's a later 12:18 EuroCity train direct to Lesce-Bled, Ljubljana and Zagreb.

    Book this train online at www.bahn.de (use this special link) with fares from €39.90 in 2nd class or €69.90 in 1st class.  The scenery across Austria is wonderful and the journey along the river Sava between Ljubljana and Zagreb is a delight.

    Booking tip:  If you don't see any cheap fares from Munich to Ljubljana or Zagreb using bahn.de (for example, if it says No special fares available), try going to the Austrian Railways website www.oebb.at and booking from Salzburg to Ljubljana or Zagreb on exactly the same train (these trains leave Salzburg about 1h55 after leaving Munich), then using www.oebb.at again to add a ticket from Munich to Salzburg on the same train.

The morning RailJet from Munich has arrived in Budapest.   Economy class seats on the Munich-Vienna RailJet train

A smart Austrian railjet train.  More photos & information about Railjet trains

 

Economy class seats.  Larger photo.

Austrian railjet seats   Scenery in the Austrian Alps between Munich & Ljubljana

1st class seats on the railjet from Munich through great scenery to Villach on the Slovenian border.  Larger photo More railjet information...

 

Through the Austrian Alps...  Clinging to the mountainside high in the Austrian Alps, the train snakes along between snow-capped mountains, absolutely wonderful...

  2nd class seats on the Munich-Zagreb train

...and along the Sava river in Slovenia.  Now across the border in Slovenia, the EuroCity train runs along the pretty River Sava all the way to Ljubljana and Zagreb...

 

Comfortable seats:  The 2nd class seats in the Slovenian cars are arranged 2+1 abreast, the same as 1st class!

The EuroCity train 'Sava' from Munich to Ljubljana & Zagreb  

The EuroCity train Sava, arrived at Zagreb.

 

More scenery along the Sava between Ljubljana & Zagreb.

Option 3, by daytime trains to Munich then the Croatian sleeper train to Zagreb.  A time-effective option with dinner in Munich...

  • Step 1, travel from Amsterdam to Munich by comfortable daytime ICE trains.  For example, you can leave Amsterdam Centraal around 12:38, change in Frankfurt to arrive Munich Hbf around 20:07.  Fares start at €39.90 in 2nd class or €69.90 in 1st class.

    Book this at German Railways www.bahn.de and print your own ticket.

    Tip:  Have dinner in Munich before boarding your sleeper, for typical Bavarian food & beer try www.augustinerkeller.de at Arnulfstrasse 52, to the north side of Munich Hbf.

  • Step 2, take the comfortable Croatian sleeper train Lisinski which leaves Munich Hbf at 23:20 and arrives in Zagreb at 08:35 next morning.  It has a modern Croatian air-conditioned couchette car with 4 & 6 berth compartments and a modern air-conditioned Croatian sleeping-car with comfortable 1, 2 & 3 berth compartments with washbasin, see the photos below and the Croatian sleeper video here.

    Fares start at €49 with a couchette in 6-berth, €59 with a couchette in 4-berth, €89 in a 2-bed sleeper with washbasin or €129 in a single-bed sleeper with washbasin.

    Book the sleeper online at the German Railways website www.bahn.de and print your own ticket.  Alternatively, tickets can also be booked at www.trainline.eu, also with print-at-home tickets.  This gets prices from the Austrian Railways system so can sometimes be cheaper.

The 'Lisinski' sleeper train from Zagreb to Munich, at Zagreb main station   Sleeper compartment in the Croatian sleeping-car from Munich to Zagreb

The sleeping-car on the Lisinski:  The modern air-conditioned Croatian sleeping-car of the Lisinski from Munich to Zagreb has 10 compartments with washbasin, each of which can be used as a 1, 2 or 3 berth room, with toilets at the end of the corridor.  Above left, the sleeper arrived at Zagreb.  See larger sleeper photo...

4-berth couchettes on Munich to Zagreb train   Couchette car on Munich to Zagreb train, at Munich

The couchette car on the Lisinski has modern air-conditioned 6-berth and 4-berth compartments.  Above right, the westbound train is seen boarding at Zagreb. See panorama photo.

Scenery between Ljubljana, Zagreb & Belgrade

Wake up to scenery like this between Ljubljana & Zagreb, along the river Sava...

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Amsterdam to Belgrade, Sofia, Montenegro...

Option 1, daytime train - sleeper - daytime train...

  • Step 1, travel from Amsterdam to Munich by luxurious ICE trains, there are various departures every day, the best journeys are the ones with just one change.   You can leave Amsterdam Centraal as late as 14:38 or so, change at Düsseldorf and arrive Munich Hbf around 22:06, but by all means take an earlier train and have a leisurely evening in Munich.  Fares start at just €39.90 in 2nd class or €69.90 in 1st class.  Book this online at www.bahn.de, the German Railways website, and simply print your own ticket.

  • Step 2, then take the comfortable Hungarian sleeper train Kalman Imre leaving Munich Hbf at 23:20 and arriving Budapest Keleti at 09:24, fares from €49 with couchette or €79 with a bed in a 2-bed sleeper.  Watch the Hungarian sleeping-car video.  Book this train at www.bahn.de, and print your own ticket.

  • Step 3, now travel from Budapest to Belgrade by EuroCity train Avala, leaving Budapest Keleti station at 11:57 and arriving in Belgrade Centar station at 20:42.  The fare is just €15 - a permanently available unlimited special offer - if bought at Budapest station on the day or online at the Hungarian Railways website www.mavcsoport.hu, see my advice on how to use mavcsoport.hu & how you collect your tickets.

  • Step 4 if you're heading for Sofia, spend the night in Belgrade - I recommend the historic Hotel Moskva - and travel from Belgrade to Sofia next day.  From 14 June to 16 September 2019 there's a direct train called the Balkan which leaves Belgrade Topcider station at 09:12 arriving Sofia Central Station at 20:30.  2nd class only, bring your own picnic and bottle of wine as there's no catering.  At other times of year you leave Belgrade Centar station at 06:10, change at Nis & Dimitrovgrad arriving Sofia at 19:00.  Buy this ticket in Belgrade for €20.60, there are always places available, even on the day.  It cannot be booked online, and there's no need.  See the Belgrade to Sofia page for full details, tips, updates & photos.

  • Step 4 if you're heading for Montenegro, spend the night in Belgrade - I recommend the historic Hotel Moskva - and take either the daytime train or sleeper train to Montenegro next day.  A daytime and overnight train run from Belgrade Topcider station to Podgorica and Bar over one of the most scenic lines in Europe, for times, fares & photos see the Belgrade to Montenegro page.  Get off at Podgorica for buses to Budva or Kotor.

Option 2, sleeper - daytime train - sleeper... 

  • Step 3 if you're heading for Montenegro, a daytime and overnight train run from Belgrade Topcider station to Podgorica and Bar over one of the most scenic lines in Europe, for times, fares & photos see the Belgrade to Montenegro page.  Change at Podgorica for a bus to Budva or Kotor.

    A Serbian sleeping-car on the Belgrade to Budapest train   Serbian 6-berth couchettes

    The Belgrade to Budapest couchette car...

     

    Elderly Serbian 6-berth couchettes...

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Amsterdam to Warsaw, Krakow & Poland from €69.80...

Option 1, by daytime trains in a single day via Berlin - why not spend a few hours in Berlin?

  • You can leave Amsterdam earlier, at 07:00 to build in more time in Berlin which breaks up the trip nicely, there are left luggage lockers available and Berlin Hbf is just 10-15 min walk from the Reichstag & Brandenburg Gate, so even a few hours stopover is a worthwhile experience.  If you took the 07:00 from Amsterdam, you could spend 13:22-16:43 exploring Berlin, and reach Warsaw at 23:06.

Option 2, by daytime trains with overnight stop in Berlin - a time-effective option & a chance to see Berlin.

  • Day 1, take the InterCity train leaving Amsterdam Centraal at 15:00 and arriving Berlin Hbf around 21:22 with fares from €39.90 in 2nd class or €69.90 in 1st class.  Or by all means take one of the earlier trains at 11:00 or 13:00 and have more time in Berlin.  Book this train at www.bahn.de and print your own ticket.

  • Stay overnight in Berlin.  The 3-star Meininger Hotel or InterCity Hotel are ideal as they are right next to Berlin Hbf and a 10-minute walk from the Reichstag or a 15-minute walk from the Brandenburg Gate, relatively inexpensive and get good reviews.  If you want to push the boat out, try the famous & historic Hotel Adlon Kempinski Berlin right next to the Brandenburg Gate.  If you're on a tight budget, try the cheaper Motel One Berlin-Hauptbahnhof just behind the station or see www.hostelworld.com.

  • Day 2, travel from Berlin Hbf to Warsaw Centralna in 6h from €29.90 in 2nd class or €59.90 in 1st class on any Berlin-Warsaw EuroCity train you like.  Daily except Sundays the 06:37 from Berlin Hbf will get you to Warsaw Centralna at 12:55 with breakfast in the bistro car - or have a leisurely breakfast at your hotel and take the daily 09:37 arriving 16:15.  Book this train at www.bahn.de and print your own ticket.

  • For Krakow, travel to Warsaw then take one of the regular air-conditioned InterCity (IC, EIC or EIP) trains from Warsaw to Krakow taking just 2 hours 20 minutes.  To arrange tickets, first see if www.bahn.de will sell you a through ticket from Berlin to Krakow, looking for journeys with 1 change in Warsaw,  If it does, great, if it won't, first use www.bahn.de to book Berlin-Warsaw, allow at least an hour in Warsaw then book Warsaw to Krakow at Polish Railways www.intercity.pl from around €25.

The Berlin-Warsaw Express train   2nd class seating compartment on the Berlin to Warsaw Express train

The Berlin-Warsaw EuroCity trains have modern air-conditioned 1st & 2nd class coaches, most with compartments and side corridor like this, others with open-plan seating.

Bistro car on the Berlin-Warszawa Express train   Sausage soup on the Berlin-Warszawa Express   A main course schnitzel in the bistro-restaurant on the Berlin to Warsaw Express train

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Amsterdam to Kiev & Ukraine...
  • Day 1, travel from Amsterdam to Berlin by InterCity train, leaving Amsterdam Centraal at 15:00 and arriving at Berlin Hbf at 21:22.  Fares start at €39.90 booked at the German Railways website www.bahn.de.  You print your own ticket.  By all means take an earlier train for a leisurely afternoon or evening in Berlin, the station is just 15 minutes walk from the Reichstag and Brandenburg Gate.

  • Stay overnight in Berlin.  The 3-star Meininger Hotel or InterCity Hotel are ideal as they are right next to Berlin Hbf and a 10-minute walk from the Reichstag or a 15-minute walk from the Brandenburg Gate, relatively inexpensive and get good reviews.  If you want to push the boat out, try the famous & historic Hotel Adlon Kempinski Berlin right next to the Brandenburg Gate.  If you're on a tight budget, try the cheaper Motel One Berlin-Hauptbahnhof just behind the station or see www.hostelworld.com.

  • Day 2, travel from Berlin to Warsaw by EuroCity train leaving Berlin Hbf at 09:37 daily arriving Warsaw Centralna at 16:15, from €29.90 also booked at www.bahn.de and also with print-at-home tickets.

    On Mondays to Saturdays it's better to take the earlier 06:37 EuroCity train from Berlin to Warsaw arriving 12:55, giving you a few hours to explore Warsaw, see Warsaw Centralna station & city information.  Warsaw's historic old town is a 20 minute walk from Centralna station - if you fancy a modest splurge, the celebrated Ufukiera restaurant (www.ufukiera.pl) is excellent and right on the square in the heart of Warsaw's old town.  The Palace of Culture (a wedding cake style Soviet skyscraper and distinctive Warsaw landmark, www.pkin.pl) is right next to the station and has a viewing terrace on the 30th floor.

  • Day 2, travel from Warsaw to Kiev on the Kiev Express sleeper train leaving Warsaw Centralna at 17:09 every day and arriving Kiev at 11:05 next morning.  This train has comfortable Ukrainian 1, 2 & 3 bed sleepers with washbasin.  There's no restaurant car, so take a picnic and perhaps some wine or beer.

    The fare is around €57 including a bed in a 3-berth sleeper, €66 with a bed in a 2-bed sleeper or €110 in a single-bed sleeper all to yourself.

    The Kiev Express cannot be booked online, so use reliable Polish agency www.polrail.com who have an online ordering system at http://booking.polrail.com.  Tickets can be collected in Warsaw or (at extra charge) shipped to any address worldwide.  Polrail are also pretty good at arranging the return reservation back from Kiev as they have close contacts with Ukrainian Railways. 

  • To book onward trains from Kiev to Odessa & other places in Ukraine, see the Ukraine page.

The Kiev Express has modernised Ukrainian sleeping-cars with 2-berth & 3-berth compartments.  All bedding is supplied, and washrooms and toilets are at the end of the corridor.  Berths convert to seats for daytime use.  A smartly-uniformed Ukrainian railways sleeper attendant travels with each car.  Photos courtesy of www.railbookers.com

The Kiev Express   1, 2 or 3 bed sleeper compartment   Each compartment has a washbasin

Boarding in Warsaw...

 

A sleeper compartment...

 

...with washbasin.

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Amsterdam to Moscow, St Petersburg & Russia

Option 1, using the Warsaw-Moscow sleeper train Polonez - 3 times per week from June 2017, previously daily.

  • Day 1, take the 15:00 InterCity train from Amsterdam Centraal arriving Berlin Hbf at 21:22, with fares from €39.90 booked at the German Railways website www.bahn.de.  You print your own ticket.  By all means take an earlier train for a leisurely afternoon or evening in Berlin, trains also leave Amsterdam for Berlin at 09:00, 11:00 & 13:00.

  • Stay overnight in Berlin.  The 3-star Meininger Hotel or InterCity Hotel are ideal as they are right next to Berlin Hbf and a 10-minute walk from the Reichstag or a 15-minute walk from the Brandenburg Gate, relatively inexpensive and get good reviews.  If you want to push the boat out, try the famous & historic Hotel Adlon Kempinski Berlin right next to the Brandenburg Gate.  If you're on a tight budget, try the cheaper Motel One Berlin-Hauptbahnhof just behind the station or see www.hostelworld.com.

  • Day 2 morning, travel from Berlin to Warsaw by EuroCity train leaving Berlin Hbf at 06:37 daily except Sundays and arriving Warsaw Centralna at 12:55.  Fares start at €29.90, also booked at www.bahn.de.

    You have a few hours to explore Warsaw, see Warsaw Centralna station & city information.   Warsaw's historic old town is a 20 minute walk from Centralna station - if you fancy a modest splurge, the celebrated Ufukiera restaurant (www.ufukiera.pl) is excellent and right on the square in the heart of Warsaw's old town.  The Palace of Culture (a wedding cake style Soviet skyscraper and distinctive Warsaw landmark, www.pkin.pl) is right next to the station and has a viewing terrace on the 30th floor.

  • Day 2 late afternoon, take the sleeper train Polonez leaving Warsaw Centralna at 16:05 on Tuesdays, Thursdays & Saturdays and arriving Moscow Belorussky station next day at 12:11 (late March to late October) or 13:11 (late October to late March).

    The Polonez is now operated with Russian carriages, using brand-new Austrian-built sleeping-cars with 4-berth compartments introduced in 2014, see panorama photo inside one of these modern sleepers.  Eastbound, these 4-bed sleepers only exist on the Polish reservations system as 2nd class 4-berth, so if you want dual or single occupancy you have to buy up multiple berths in one compartment.  Westbound there's no problem, as the Russian reservations system is configured book these compartments as 1st class single, 1st class double or 2nd class 4-berth.  A Russian restaurant car is attached between Brest (on the Polish/Belarus border) & Moscow. Map of Moscow showing Belorussky station.

    To book the Warsaw to Moscow sleeper, most nationalities except the USA can try en.oui.sncf, which might work - tickets are sent by regular post to most countries except the USA, but you MUST make sure Europe (other countries) remains selected top right with the EU flag showing.

    Alternatively, you can easily book the Polonez by contacting highly-recommended Polish train ticketing agency www.polrail.com - their booking system is at http://booking.polrail.com.  They can arrange train tickets for international trains starting in Poland with tickets collected in Warsaw or (at extra charge) shipped to any address worldwide.

The Polonez train from Warsaw to Moscow uses Russian air-conditioned sleeping-cars, pictured below, with compartments which can be used as 1st class 2-berth or 2nd class 4-berth (shown below right), with a shower & toilets at the end of the corridor.  See panorama photo inside one of the new Russian sleepers.

A modern Russian sleeping-car of the sort used on the Polonez   A 2-berth or 4-berth compartment in daytime mode

Option 2, using the new Berlin-Moscow Strizh (Swift) Talgo sleeper train, twice a week...

  • Step 1, take the Amsterdam to Berlin InterCity train leaving Amsterdam Centraal at 11:00 and arriving Berlin Hbf around 17:22 with fares from €39.  Or by all means take one of the earlier trains at 07:00 or 09:00 and have more time in Berlin.  Book this train at www.bahn.de.  Transfer by frequent S-Bahn train from Berlin Hbf to Berlin Ostbahnhof.

  • Step 2, travel from Berlin to Moscow by new direct Russian sleeper train, leaving Berlin Ostbahnhof at 19:24 on Mondays & Saturdays, arriving at Moscow's Belorussky station next day at either 19:50 (late March to late October) or 20:50 (late October to late March).

    This new train started running in 2016, an articulated Spanish-built Talgo train branded Strizh (swift).  It has ordinary seats and sleeping-cars with 2nd class 4-berth compartments, 1st class 1 or 2 berth compartments with washbasin and deluxe 1 or 2 berth compartments with en suite shower & toilet.  There's also a restaurant & bistro car.  See photo of 2-berth sleeper on this train.

    Russian track gauge is 5', but most of Europe (including the UK) is 4' 8½", so at Brest on the Belarus frontier the train runs through a gauge-changing shed and the axles automatically adjust to the new gauge.  Once in Russia, the scenery is rolling hills, birch tree forests, and villages of small wooden houses.  Approaching Moscow, you may glimpse the plaques on the station building marked '1812' and '1942' as the train passes through the small station of historic Borodino...

    You can book the Berlin-Moscow train at the Russian Railways website www.rzd.ru and print your own ticket, it's a little fiddly but works, see my advice for using rzd.ru here, or you can easily buy it online with English language after-sales service if you need it, using the Real Russia online system here.

  • Don't forget to arrange both your Russian visa and Belarus transit visa as the train runs via Belarus.

    There is no problem travelling to Russia via Belarus by rail, see latest advice at http://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/belarus.

The Strizh sleeper train from Berlin to Moscow

The Strizh sleeper train from Berlin to Moscow, seen here boarding in Berlin.  It's a Spanish-built articulated Talgo train - note the relatively small size of each car, just one axle between each car.  Courtesy of Stuart Wilks & Jaap van Ginkel.

2-bed sleeper with washbasin, night   2-bed sleeper with washbasin, day mode   Complimentary toiletry pack in a Strizh sleeper

2-berth sleeper with washbasin, in night & daytime modes...

 

Complimentary toiletry pack...

Option 3:  Amsterdam to Moscow via Kiev - avoiding the need for Belarus visa...

  • It's not difficult to get a Belarus transit visa, but many people want to avoid the bureaucracy and cost of yet another visa, and you can easily travel via Kiev, as most EU nationals don't need a visa for Ukraine.

  • Step 1, travel from Amsterdam to Kiev as shown in the Amsterdam to Kiev section above.

  • Step 2, travel from Kiev to Moscow by overnight train.  There are several night trains and times vary by date, but for example train 6 leaves Kiev around 19:36 and arriving in Moscow Kievskaya station next morning at around 10:09, with 2-berth and 4-berth sleepers available.  Check times for your date using www.bahn.de/en.  Note that there's also a direct train from Kiev to St Petersburg, but this passes through a small corner of Belarus, requiring a Belarus visa.

  • Use reliable Polish ticketing agency www.polrail.com to book both your Warsaw-Kiev and Kiev-Moscow trains.  Tickets are collected in Warsaw.

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Amsterdam to Athens, Corfu & Greece...

Option 1, Amsterdam to Athens by train & ferry via Italy - the leisurely option with an Adriatic cruise thrown in...

  • The best and most comfortable option is to pick up a ferry in Bari.  The whole scenic and relaxing journey from Amsterdam to Athens will take around 3 nights, depending how the connections work out on your particular date.

  • Step 1, travel from Amsterdam to Milan in Italy as shown above, using whichever option you like best.  Stay overnight in Milan.

  • Step 2, take the 07:35 Frecciabianca train from Milan Centrale to Bari Centrale.  In Bari it's a 10 minute taxi ride or 25 minute walk to the ferry terminal next to Bari's pleasant old town.  I'd allow at least 3 hours between train and ferry in Bari, including the 2-hour ferry check-in.

  • Step 3, sail across the Adriatic from Bari to Corfu, Igoumenitsa or Patras in Greece aboard a luxurious cruise ferry booked at www.superfast.com.  She normally sails daily except Sundays at 19:30 arriving 13:00 next day.

  • Step 4, from Patras it's a few hours bus ride to Athens.  There's a bus/train combined timetable from Patras to Athens on www.trainose.gr but it takes a bit of finding.  Buy the bus ticket when you reach Patras.

  • The Milan to Athens part of this journey is explained in more detail on the London to Greece page, just ignore the London to Milan part of the recommended journey!

A 2 or 4 berth cabin on the Italy-Greece ferry  

2 or 4-berth cabin with private toilet & shower.

 

Relaxing on deck...

The ferry from Bari to Greece at sea

At sea, passing Cephalonia & Ithaca.  This is what travel to Greece should be like!

Option 2, Amsterdam to Athens overland by train via Munich & Belgrade - a rail adventure across the Balkans...

  • You can also travel overland by train from Amsterdam to Athens via Belgrade.  It'll take 3 nights, with all the romance and adventure of an epic train ride through the Balkans.

  • Travel from Amsterdam to Munich by daytime ICE trains from €39.90 booked at www.bahn.de.

  • In Munich you pick up the London-Munich-Belgrade-Thessaloniki-Athens route explained in detail on the London to Greece page.

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Amsterdam to Istanbul & Turkey...

This is an overland adventure, taking 3 nights...

Option 1, via Munich, Budapest & Bucharest...

Option 2, via Belgrade & Sofia...

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Railbookers custom-made tours

Custom-made tours by train...

If you just want to buy train tickets at the cheapest price, book online as shown on this page.  However, if you want someone to sort out your whole trip for you, arranging all your trains, hotels and transfers, and to look after you if anything affects your arrangements, the people to talk to are Railbookers.  Railbookers can tailor-make a train trip around Europe to your own specification.  Just tell them what you want and they'll advise you on the best trains, routes & hotels.  They get good reports and a lot of repeat business!  They now have offices in the UK, North America and Australia.

  UK call 020 3327 0761, www.railbookers.co.uk

  US call free 1-888-829-4775, see website.

  Canada call free 1-855-882-2910, see website.

  Australia call toll-free 1300 971 526, see website

  New Zealand call toll-free 0800 000 554 or see website.


Find hotels in Amsterdam & other cities

    

Favourite hotel search & price comparison: hotelscombined.com

www.hotelscombined.com checks all the main hotel booking sites at once to find the widest choice of hotels & the cheapest seller.  It's been named as the World's Leading Hotel Comparison Site in the World Travel Awards and I recommend it to find hotels in even the smallest places and to check that another retailer isn't selling the same hotel for less.

Favourite hotel booking site: www.booking.com

www.booking.com is my favourite hotel booking site, and unless HotelsCombined throws up major price differences I prefer doing my bookings in one place here. 

You can usually book with free cancellation - this allows you to confirm your accommodation at no risk before train booking opens.  It also means you can hold accommodation while you finalise your itinerary, and alter your plans as they evolve - a feature I use all the time when putting a trip together.

Suggested hotels in Amsterdam...

  • Book your accommodation in Amsterdam early, as it can be difficult to find rooms at peak periods at short notice, the better and cheaper rooms quickly sell out.  You'll also find prices vary significantly even at the same hotel, depending on the season and what's going on in the city.

  • The ultimate Amsterdam hotel is The Grand, now the Sofitel Legend The Grand Amsterdam.  From around €300 per night upwards for a double room, this is one of the most famous hotel in Amsterdam, 5 minutes walk from Dam Square and 10 minutes walk from Centraal Station.  For something smaller, slightly cheaper but equally special, try the Canal House boutique hotel, 15 minutes walk from the station, €205 upwards.

  • Mid-range to top end:  The Park Plaza Victoria Hotel gets great reviews and is very convenient as it's on the corner just across the road from Amsterdam Centraal station, doubles from around €135 upwards per night.  In a similar price bracket, try the Crowne Plaza Amsterdam City Centre, 6 minutes walk from Amsterdam Centraal and also with excellent reviews. 

  • Mid-range:  The Hotel Luxer is cheaper, from around €109 upwards per night, and also just 7 minutes walk from Centraal station with great reviews.  Also try The Times Hotel, Hotel Tourist Inn or Daily Rooms Hotel.  Or the Hotel Sebastians, around €115 per night, equally well located 10 minutes walk from Centraal station, another hotel which gets great reviews.

  • Cheapies:  There are many cheap hotels, including many near the station, but very few get outstanding reviews.  For ones that do, try the floating boat hotel AmiciA (formerly Friesland), around €45 per night 15 minutes walk from the station or the Rembrandt Hotel from €80, 10 min walk from Dam Square though 20 minutes walk from the station.

Other hotel sites worth trying...

  • www.tripadvisor.com is the place to find independent travellers' reviews of all the main hotels.

  • www.booking.com is my own preferred hotel booking system (Hotels Combined being a search/comparison system).  It has a simple interface, a good selection in most countries worldwide, useful online customer reviews of each hotel, and decent prices, usually shown inclusive of unavoidable extras such as taxes (a pet hate of mine is systems that show one price, then charge you another!).

Backpacker hostels...

  • www.hostelworld.com:  If you're on a tight budget, don't forget about backpacker hostels.  Hostelworld offers online booking of cheap private rooms or dorm beds in backpacker hostels in most cities at rock-bottom prices.


Travel insurance & health card...

 

 

Columbus direct travel insurance

Take out decent travel insurance, it's essential...

Never travel overseas without travel insurance from a reliable insurer, with at least £1m or preferably £5m medical cover.  It should also cover cancellation and loss of cash and belongings, up to a sensible limit.  An annual multi-trip policy is usually cheaper than several single-trip policies even for just 2 or 3 trips a year, I have an annual policy myself.  Here are some suggested insurers.  Seat61 gets a small commission if you buy through these links.

In the UK, try Columbus Direct or use Confused.com to compare prices & policies from many different insurers.

If you have a pre-existing medical condition or are over 65, see www.JustTravelCover.com - 10% discount with code seat61.

        If you live in Australia, New Zealand, Ireland or the EU, try Columbus Direct's other websites.

  If you live in the USA try Travel Guard USA.

Get a spare credit card, designed for travel with no currency exchange loading & low or no ATM fees...

It costs nothing to take out an extra credit card.  If you keep it in a different part of your luggage so you're not left stranded if your wallet gets stolen, this is a form of extra travel insurance in itself.  In addition, some credit cards are significantly better for overseas travel than others.  Martin Lewis's www.moneysavingexpert.com/travel/cheap-travel-money explains which UK credit cards have the lowest currency exchange commission loadings when you buy something overseas, and the lowest cash withdrawal fees when you use an ATM abroad.  Taking this advice can save you quite a lot on each trip compared to using your normal high-street bank credit card!

 


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