Barcelona Sants

 small bullet point Barcelona Sants station information

 small bullet point  1st class lounge at Barcelona Sants

small bullet point  Hotels in Barcelona - with suggested hotels

bullet pointI want to go from Barcelona to...

    

     Click here if your journey starts in another city

     See COVID-19 information & update

This page explains how to travel by train from Barcelona to other cities all over Europe, and how to buy tickets the cheapest way.  Train information is current for 2021.

bullet pointBefore you buy your tickets...

Take a moment to read these tips for buying European train tickets.  They answer the usual questions including "Do I need to book in advance or can I just buy at the station?", "Can I stop off?", "Are there Senior fares?" and the old favourite, "Should I buy an $800 railpass or buy a €35 point-to-point ticket online?".  Click here to understand how far ahead you can buy train tickets.

bullet pointEuropean 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...


Barcelona to other Spanish cities...
Barcelona to Madrid by AVE or Ouigo....
An AVE-S103 high-speed train at Madrid Atocha

An S103 AVE train as used between Barcelona & Madrid Atocha, seen at Madrid Atocha station..  Taking as little as 2h30, it's faster than flying.  See virtual tour

Turista class on a Spanish S103 AVE train   Preferente class on a Spanish S103 AVE train

Turista (2nd class) on an AVE S103.

 

Turista Plus (premium 2nd class)  seating.

Club class on a Spanish S103 AVE train   Madrid Atocha station - the tropical garden in the old trainshed

Preferente class (1st class) seating (formerly Club) on the AVE train.  A meal with wine is included on Mondays-Fridays.

 

Madrid Atocha station.  One of my favourite stations, the old trainshed has been preserved and turned into a tropical garden.  AVE trains arrive in the adjacent modern extension.  See the Madrid Atocha station guide.

Barcelona to Malaga, Cordoba & Seville by AVE...
Complimentary at-seat meal in Club class & Preferente Class   AVE Club class on an S102 AVE train from Madrid to Malaga

High-speed AVE trains link Barcelona with Seville, Cordoba & Malaga with no need to fly.  These excellent AVE-S112 high-speed trains are used on this route.  Known as a Pato (duck).  No prizes for guessing why...

AVE Tourist class seats on an S102 AVE train from Madrid to Malaga   AVE Preferente seating on an S102 AVE train from Madrid to Malaga

AVE Turista class...  Comfortable seats, 2 abreast each side of the aisle, mainly unidirectional but some bays of 4 around a table like this...

 

AVE Turista Plus...  Reclining seats, power sockets for laptops & mobiles, mainly unidirectional but some tables for 2 and tables for 4...

Barcelona to Granada by AVE...
Barcelona to Valencia & Alicante...
Barcelona to San Sebastian & Bilbao...
San Sebastian to Barcelona train about to leave   1st class seats

The morning Alvia to Barcelona at San Sebastian...

 

Preferente (1st class)...

2nd class seats   The cafe bar

Turista (2nd class)...

 

The cafe-bar does an excellent cafe con leche...

Scenery between San Sebastian & Barcelona

The train descends from the foothills of the Pyrenees onto the plain below...

Barcelona to Santiago de Compostela, A Coruna & Vigo...

  Acciona Ferry 'Fortuny' sailing from Palma de Mallorca to Barcelona
 

Acciona Trasmediterranea ferry leaving Palma for Barcelona.  Similar ferries operate from Barcelona to Ibiza.

  Balearia fast ferry 'Jaume I' about to sail from Barcelona to Minorca & Alcudia on Mallorca
 

The Balearia fast ferry to Mallorca.  That's the Columbus Monument at the foot of La Rambla in the background!

Barcelona to Ibiza by ferry...

Barcelona to Mallorca by ferry...

Back to top


Barcelona to Gibraltar...
Madrid-Algeciras train at Madrid Atocha

An Intercity train (formerly branded Altaria), about to leave Madrid Atocha for Algeciras.

Cafe-bar on Madrid-Algeciras train   Turista Plus seats on Madrid-Algeciras train

Cafe-bar, with bar stools...

 

Turista Plus seats...

Turista seats on Madrid-Algeciras train   Algeciras station

Turista seats...

 

Algeciras station, across the road from the bus station.

Bus M-120 for La Linea (Gibraltar's frontier) boarding at Algeciras bus station.   The Rock of Gribraltar, viewed from a taxi approaching La Linea

Bus M-120 boarding at Algeciras bus station

 

Rock of Gibraltar, seen from a taxi near La Linea.

Back to top


Barcelona to London from €96...

Back to top


Barcelona to Paris from €39...

Option 1, Barcelona to Paris by high-speed train in 6h25 from €39...  Click for full details

TGV Duplex at Paris Gare de Lyon

TGV Duplex at Paris Gare de Lyon. These 320 km/h double-deckers link Paris with Barcelona.  Watch TGV Duplex video.

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

Cafe-bar on upper deck in car 4 (or 14), serving tea, coffee, soft drinks, wine, beer, snacks & microwave-style hot dishes.

 

2nd class seats on upper deck.  There's a mix or tables for 4 and unidirectional seating.  360º photo.

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

1st class seats on upper deck, a club duo on the left, club quatre on the right.  360º photo.

 

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

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 Girona to Perpignan, see en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CanigouMore photos of what to see on the Paris-Barcelona train journey.

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...

Option 2, Barcelona to Paris by sleeper train via Latour de Carol - time-effective & scenic...

Intercite de nuit overnight train   Intercite de nuit couchette

Intercité de nuit overnight trains have 1st class 4-berth & 2nd class 6-berth couchettes, each with lightweight sleeping-bag & mineral water...  More information about Intercité de Nuit trains.

Option 3, Barcelona to Paris by sleeper train via Cerbère/Perpignan...

Intercite de nuit overnight train   Intercite de nuit couchette

The intercité de nuit overnight train has 1st class 4-berth & 2nd class 6-berth couchettes, each with lightweight sleeping-bag & mineral water.  More information about Intercité de Nuit trains.

Barcelona to Narbonne, Perpignan, Montpellier, Nîmes, Lyon...
Barcelona to Bordeaux...

Option 1, via Narbonne - this is the fastest & easiest way, although not necessarily the cheapest...

Option 2, via San Sebastian - how about lunch in San Sebastian?

Option 3, via Latour de Carol... 

Barcelona to Toulouse & Carcassone...

Option 1, by high-speed train via Narbonne -  fastest, but reservation required, dynamic pricing so book ahead.

Option 2, straight through the Pyrenees via Latour de Carol - slower, cheaper, much more scenic.  Always €12 + €27 any day, any date.

Barcelona to Avignon, Marseille, Cannes & Nice...

Option 1, late afternoon departure by direct AVE train from Barcelona to Avignon & Marseille.  Stay overnight in Marseille, onwards to Cannes & Nice next day.  If you want to go from Barcelona to Cannes or Nice all in one day, see option 2 below - but I still reckon this option 1 is best, especially with a longer stopover in Marseille!

AVE S100 at Barcelona Sants

Barcelona to Avignon & Marseille by AVE...  An AVE-S100 ready to leave Barcelona Sants. 

 

1st class seats on an AVE S100.  360º photo of 1st class.

Cafe-bar...

AVE train at Barcelona  

These S100 AVE trains operate the TGV/AVE services from Madrid to Marseille, Barcelona to Lyon, Toulouse.  This is an AVE-S100 at Barcelona Sants.

 

2nd class seats on the S100 AVE, all with power sockets.  Luggage goes on the racks at the car ends or above the seats.  360º photo of 2nd class More photos & info about AVE S100.

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 Girona to Perpignan, see en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canigou.

Option 2, on a morning departure reaching Avignon & Marseille after lunch and reaching Cannes & Nice in the evening...

Back to top


Barcelona to Brussels & Bruges from €88...

Option 1, by high-speed train in a single day, via Lyon so no need to cross Paris. The easiest way!

Option 2, by high-speed TGV in a single day, via Paris...

Option 3, by high-speed TGV with overnight hotel in Paris...

TGV Duplex at Paris Gare de Lyon

Step 1, Barcelona to Paris by TGV Duplex, a 320 km/h (199 mph) double-deck train.  Watch TGV Duplex video.

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

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

 

2nd class seats on upper deck with a mix of tables for 4 & unidirectional seating.  360º photo.

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

1st class seats on upper deck, a club duo on the left, a club quatre on the right.  360º photo.

 

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

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 Girona to Perpignan, see en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CanigouMore photos of what to see on the Paris-Barcelona train journey.

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...

A Thalys train from Amsterdam to Paris

Step 2, Paris to Brussels by Thalys, seen here at Paris Nord.  See 360º photos inside a ThalysMore information 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.

Option 4:  Barcelona-Paris by overnight sleeper train, then high-speed train onwards to Brussels.

Back to top


Barcelona to Amsterdam from €74...

Option 1, Barcelona to Amsterdam in a single day by high-speed train...

Option 2, by high-speed TGV with overnight hotel in Paris...

Option 3:  Barcelona-Paris by overnight sleeper train, then high-speed train onwards to Amsterdam.

TGV Duplex at Paris Gare de Lyon

Step 1, Barcelona to Paris by TGV Duplex, a 320 km/h (199 mph) double-deck train.  Watch TGV Duplex video.

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

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

 

2nd class seats on upper deck with a mix of tables for 4 & unidirectional seating.  360º photo.

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

1st class seats on upper deck, a club duo on the left, a club quatre on the right.  360º photo.

 

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

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 Girona to Perpignan, see en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CanigouMore photos of what to see on the Paris-Barcelona train journey.

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...

A Thalys train from Amsterdam to Paris

Step 2, Paris to Amsterdam by Thalys, seen here at Paris Nord.  See 360º photos inside a ThalysMore information 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.

Back to top


Barcelona to Luxembourg...

Option 1, Barcelona to Luxembourg in a single day...

Option 2, Spanish cities to Luxembourg with overnight stop in Paris...

Back to top


Barcelona to Geneva, Zurich & Switzerland from €69...

Option 1, Barcelona to Switzerland in a single day, leaving 08:15...

Option 2, Barcelona to Switzerland in a single day, leaving at 10:05 daily...

Option 3, Barcelona to Avignon or Marseille in the evening, overnight stop & morning free, then afternoon TGV to Geneva...

AVE S100 at Barcelona Sants

Barcelona to Lyon by AVE...  This is the morning AVE to Lyon ready to leave Barcelona Sants. 

 

1st class seats on an AVE S100.  360º photo of 1st class.

Cafe-bar...

AVE train at Barcelona  

These S100 AVE trains operate the TGV/AVE services from Madrid to Marseille, Barcelona to Lyon, Toulouse.  This is an AVE-S100 at Barcelona Sants.

 

2nd class seats on the S100 AVE, all with power sockets.  Luggage goes on the racks at the car ends or above the seats.  360º photo of 2nd class More photos & info about AVE S100.

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 Girona to Perpignan, see en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canigou.

Back to top


Barcelona to Milan, Venice, Florence, Rome & Italy from €68...

So many people want to travel this route, and many of them mistakenly think you have to fly.  You don't.  You can travel cheaply and time-effectively by comfortable and civilised train with an overnight stop at wonderful Marseille into the bargain and perhaps some time in Nice.  The scenic train ride along the Côte d'Azur and Italian Riviera can be a highlight of your trip...

Option 1, Barcelona to Milan in a single day, from the Pyrenees to the Alps with lunch in Lyon...

Option 2, by high-speed train to Marseille, overnight stop, Thello train from Marseille to Genoa & Milan.

AVE S100 at Barcelona Sants

Step 1, Barcelona to Marseille by AVE.  An AVE-S100 ready to leave Barcelona Sants for France... 

 

1st class seats on an AVE S100.  360º photo of 1st class.

Cafe-bar...

AVE train at Barcelona  

These S100 AVE trains operate the TGV/AVE services from Madrid to Marseille, Barcelona to Lyon, Toulouse.  This is an AVE-S100 at Barcelona Sants.

 

2nd class seats on the S100 AVE, all with power sockets.  Luggage goes on the racks at the car ends or above the seats.  360º photo of 2nd class More photos & info about AVE S100.

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 Girona to Perpignan, see en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canigou.

The Vieux Port at Marseille

Bonjour Marseille!  The Eglise Notre Dame de la Garde, overlooking the Vieux Port.

Thello train from Marseille & Nice to Milan, at Marseille St Charles   1st class seats on Thello train from Nice to Milan

Step 2, Marseille to Milan by Thello, seen here at Milan Centrale.  More photos & information about these Thello trains.

 

1st class seats on Thello.  All seats have power sockets.  Plenty of luggage room on racks & between seat backs...

2nd class seats on the Thello train from Nice to Milan   Cafe counter on the Thello train from Nice to Milan

2nd class seats on the Thello train.  All seats have power sockets, with plenty of luggage space on racks and between seat backs.

 

The small cafe-bar counter on the Milan to Nice & Marseille Thello train serving tea, coffee, wine, beer, soft drinks and snacks.

Coastal views from the train between Toulon and Nice

The view from the train between Marseille & Nice...

Option 3, Barcelona to Milan in a single day via Geneva - via the Alps!

Option 4, Barcelona to Rome by cruise ferry...

Back to top


Barcelona to Lisbon from €78...

Option 1, by daytime trains with an overnight stop in Madrid - still running...

Option 2, by AVE to Madrid then Madrid to Lisbon by sleeper train - suspended.

Club class on a Spanish S103 AVE train   An S103 AVE train at Madrid Atocha station

Step 1, take an S103 AVE train from Barcelona to Madrid, seen here at Madrid Atocha station.  See virtual tour.

Turista class on a Spanish S103 AVE train   Preferente class on a Spanish S103 AVE train

Turista (2nd class) on an AVE S103.

 

Turista Plus seating.

Step 2, take the overnight sleeper train from Madrid to Lisbon...

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   Trainhotel at Madrid

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

 

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

 

Gran Clase sleepers have a toilet & shower...

 

The trainhotel from Madrid to Lisbon is an articulated Spanish Talgo train.  Seen here at Madrid Chamartin station.

Sud Express trainhotel cafe-bar...    

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

   

4-berth tourist class sleepers (Turista Cama), cosy & inexpensive.  They convert from beds to seats.

Option 3, by high-speed train to Seville & bus to Faro in the Algarve.  Overnight stop in Faro, train to Lisbon next day - via the Algarve...

Back to top


Barcelona to Porto...

Option 1, using the Madrid-Lisbon sleeper train...

Option 2, Barcelona to Vigo, overnight stop, then regional train to Porto...

Back to top


Barcelona to Faro & the Algarve...

Option 1, Barcelona to Seville by high-speed train, Seville to Faro by bus - fastest & cheapest, Barcelona to Faro in a single day...

Option 2, using the Madrid to Lisbon sleeper train - the all-train option...

Back to top


Barcelona to Andorra...

Back to top


Barcelona to Cologne, Frankfurt, Munich, Berlin & Germany from €75...

Option 1:  Barcelona to Cologne or Frankfurt in a day.  On to Hamburg or Berlin next day.

Option 2:  Barcelona to Cologne, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Berlin & Germany with overnight stop in Paris...

Option 3:  Barcelona to Cologne, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Berlin & Germany, with overnight stop in Marseille...

Option 4:  Barcelona to Geneva by TGV, overnight stop, Geneva to Munich next day...

Option 5:  Barcelona-Paris by overnight sleeper train, then high-speed train onwards to Germany.

Back to top


Barcelona to Vienna, Salzburg, Innsbruck & Austria from €88...

Option 1, Barcelona to Geneva by TGV, Zurich to Vienna by sleeper train - The most time-effective option...

Double-deck sleeping-car on a Nightjet at Zurich

The safe & comfortable Nightjet from Zurich to Vienna.  This is a double-deck sleeping-car at Zurich HB. Courtesy of DiscoverbyRail.com.

   

2-berth sleeper on lower deck...

 

Stairs down to pair of lower compartments...

 

1 or 2-bed sleeper on lower deck with washbasin, viewed through window.  Set up as 1-bed.  Note how compact the compartment is...

    4-berth couchette on Nightjet train

Austrian couchette car or liegewagen...

 

6-berth couchettes...

 

4-berth couchettes...

Option 2, Barcelona to Geneva by TGV, overnight stop in Geneva, onwards to Austria next day by railjet...

A railjet train about to leave Zurich Hbf for Innsbruck, Salzburg & Vienna

A railjet to Innsbruck, Salzburg & Vienna about to leave Zurich HB...

  Premium class seats on the Munich-Vienna RailJet train   Railjet restaurant car

Railjet first class, with black leather seats...

 

Business class...

 

The restaurant...

Railjet train at Vienna Hbf   Railjet train standard class

Railjet is Austrian Railways premier train...  More photos & information about railjet trains

 

Economy class on railjet, in open saloons with large windows.  Some seats around tables, most unidirectional.

The mountains keep on coming, see the photos & video on the Arlberg Railway page...

Back to top


Barcelona to Copenhagen, Stockholm, Oslo & Scandinavia...

Option 1, with overnight stop in Cologne...

Option 2, with overnight stops in Marseille & Hamburg - two overnight stops, but might suit you better...

Hamburg-Copenhagen train at Hamburg Hbf

Hamburg to Copenhagen by Danish IC3...  This is the late afternoon Hamburg-Copenhagen IC3 leaving platform 5 at Hamburg Hbf on a busy summer day.  The yellow stripe above the windows indicates first class, located at one end of both 3-car units.  More information about the Hamburg-Copenhagen journey.

2nd class seats on an IC3 train from Hamburg to Copenhagen   A Danish IC3 train at Copenhagen station...

2nd class seats on a IC3 train.  Larger photo.

 

An IC3 train to Copenhagen at Hamburg.

125 mph tilting 'SJ2000' from Copenhagen to Stockholm, at Copenhagen station SJ2000 2nd class seats

Copenhagen to Stockholm by X2000 train seen here at Copenhagen main station...

 

2nd class seats on an X2000 train from Copenhagen to Stockholm.

SJ2000 train   SJ2000 buffet car seating area   SJ2000 self-service buffet car.

X2000 bistro car...

 

X2000 bistro car seating area...

 

Bistro self-service...

Winter scenery fro a Copenhagen-Stockholm train

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

Back to top


Barcelona to Helsinki & Finland...

Option 1, using a Finnlines ferry from Germany to Helsinki - the easiest option...

Finnlines Star class ferry to Helsinki   Cabin on the Finnlines ferry to Helsinki

One of Finnlines 3 star class ferries to Helsinki.  Courtesy of Finnlines.

 

Cabin on the ferry...

Option 2, by train to Stockholm, then ferry to Helsinki...

Back to top


Barcelona to Prague & the Czech Republic...

Option 1, by day trains to Zurich then sleeper to Prague...

The sleeper train from Zurich to Prague

By sleeping-car from Zurich to Prague, seen here ready to leave Zurich HBSee more photos, tips & information about the Zurich to Prague sleeper.  Photo courtesy of Shaiq Ali Khan

City Night Line standard (economy) sleeper   City Night Line standard (economy) sleeper in day mode   Standard sleeper compartment, washstand   Comfortline sleeper corridor

Standard sleeper set up as a 2-berth, with blind down & washstand open.  Each room can be used with 1, 2 or 3 beds.

 

The same sleeper with berths folded away & seats folded out, washstand closed.  Very similar to a deluxe, but without the shower & toilet.

 

Economy sleeper compartments have a washstand with hot water, fresh towels, drinking water & soap.

 

Just like a hotel corridor...  The corridor in a Comfortline sleeping-car...

Option 2, by day trains with overnight stop in Paris...

Option 3, by day trains with overnight stop in Munich...

Back to top


Barcelona to Bratislava & Slovakia...

Option 1, by day trains to Switzerland then nightjet sleeper train.  The most time-effective option...

Double-deck sleeping-car on a Nightjet at Zurich

The safe & comfortable Nightjet from Zurich to Vienna.  This is a double-deck sleeping-car at Zurich HB. Courtesy of DiscoverbyRail.com.

   

2-berth sleeper on lower deck...

 

Stairs down to pair of lower compartments...

 

1 or 2-bed sleeper on lower deck with washbasin, viewed through window.  Set up as 1-bed.  Note how compact the compartment is...

    4-berth couchette on Nightjet train

Austrian couchette car or liegewagen...

 

6-berth couchettes...

 

4-berth couchettes...

Option 2, by day trains with overnight stop in Geneva.  The most scenic option...

Back to top


Barcelona to Budapest & Hungary...

Option 1, by day trains to Switzerland then EuroNight sleeper train.  The most time-effective option...

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

The Zurich-Budapest sleeper at Zurich...

 

4-berth couchettes

 

6-berth couchettes...

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

2-bed sleeper.  Larger photo

 

The Zurich-Budapest sleeper, at Budapest Keleti.  Watch the Hungarian sleeping-car video...  Courtesy of Matthew Williams.

Option 2, by day trains with overnight stop in Geneva.  The most scenic option...

On the Arlberg route from Zurich into Austria, the mountains keep on coming.  See more photos & video..

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

Economy class on railjet, in open saloons, all with power sockets.

 

"The railjet has landed..."  A railjet arrived at Budapest's beautiful Keleti station.

Back to top


Barcelona to Bucharest & Romania...

Back to top


Barcelona to Ljubljana, Zagreb, Belgrade & Sofia...

Option 1, using the Zurich-Zagreb sleeper...

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

The Croatian sleeper train from Zurich to Zagreb.  These modern air-conditioned Croatian sleeping-cars have 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.  See larger sleeper photo.

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

The couchette car to Zagreb has modern air-conditioned 6-berth & 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...

Option 2, via Marseille & Venice...

2nd class seats on the train from Venice to Ljubljana   The train from Trieste to Ljubljana

Inside the ETR563.  Larger photo.

 

The train to Ljubljana about to leave Trieste.  Courtesy of Marc Williams.

Back to top


Barcelona to Warsaw, Krakow & Poland...

Option 1, Barcelona to Warsaw with overnight stop in Paris - the fastest option, runs Sunday to Thursday only...

Option 2, Barcelona to Warsaw & Krakow using the Zurich-Vienna sleeper - the next fastest option, runs every day...

Option 3, Barcelona to Warsaw & Krakow with overnight stops in Paris & Berlin - runs daily...

Back to top


Barcelona to Vilnius, Riga, Tallinn...

  • Step 3, for onward travel from Vilnius to Riga, see here.

  • Step 4, for onward travel from Riga to Tallinn, see here.

Back to top


Barcelona to Kiev, Lviv & Ukraine...

The Vienna-Kiev sleeping-car at Kiev Pass

The Vienna-Kiev sleeping-car at Kiev Pass.  Photos courtesy of Helmut Uttenthaler.

Sleeper to Kiev about to leave Vienna   Ukrainian sleeper corridor   1, 2 or 3 bed Ukrainian sleeper compartment

The Vienna-Kiev sleeper about to leave Vienna Hbf... Courtesy of Helmut Uttenthaler.

 

The sleeper corridor.  Courtesy Helmut Uttenthaler.

 

1, 2 or 3 bed sleeper compartment.

Back to top


Barcelona to Moscow, St Petersburg & Russia...

Option 1, Barcelona to Moscow using the Paris-Moscow Express, once a week all year.

One of Russian Railways new international sleeping-cars   A 2-berth or 4-berth compartment in daytime mode

Standard sleepers with washbasin on the Paris-Moscow Express:  1st class 2-berth or 2nd class 4-berth.  More photos & information.

  One of Russian Railways new international sleeping-cars

VIP sleeper with en suite toilet & shower on the Paris-Moscow Express...  More photos & information

Option 2, to Moscow via Paris & the Berlin-Moscow sleeper, twice a week.

Option 3, via Vienna & Kiev - avoiding Belarus...

Back to top


Barcelona to Athens & Greece...
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!

Back to top


Barcelona to Istanbul & Turkey...

Back to top


bullet pointRailbookers custom-made tours

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, talk to Railbookers.  Railbookers can custom-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 flag  UK call 0207 864 4600, www.railbookers.co.uk

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

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

Australian flag  Australia call toll-free 1300 971 526, see website

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

Back to top


 

bullet pointHotels in Barcelona

Suggested hotels near Barcelona Sants station...

If you're just staying overnight between trains, here are some hotels near Barcelona Sants with good or great reviews:

Suggested Barcelona hotels near the old quarter...

If you're staying longer, find a hotel in the old quarter where the sights are - perhaps on La Rambla itself.  Here are some hotels with good or great reviews:

Find hotels at Booking.comMy favourite hotel search site: www.booking.com

www.booking.com is my favourite hotel booking site and I generally prefer booking my hotels all 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.  I never book hotels non-refundably.  I have also come to trust their review scores - you won't be disappointed with anything over 8.0.

Tip:  It can pay to compare prices across multiple hotel sites:  HotelsCombined.com is a price comparison site which compares hotel prices on Booking.com, Hotels.com, Expedia, Accor, Agoda and many others.  Though if there's not much in it, I prefer keeping all my bookings together in one place at www.booking.com.

Other hotel sites worth trying...

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

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.

Back to top


bullet pointTravel insurance & VPN

 

Columbus direct travel insurance

 

Confused.com logo

Always take out travel insurance...

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.

UK flagIn the UK, reliable insurers include Columbus Direct.

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

UK flagYou can use Confused.com to compare prices & policies from many different insurers.

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

  US flag If you live in the USA try Travel Guard USA.

A Curve card saves on foreign transaction fees...

 

Curve card

Most banks give you a poor exchange rate, then charge you a currency conversion fee.  A Curve MasterCard means no foreign transaction fees and gives you the mid-market exchange rate, at least up to a certain limit, £500 per month at time of writing.  The balance goes straight onto one of your existing debit or credit cards.

How it works:  1. Download the app for iPhone or Android.  2. Enter your details & they'll send you a Curve MasterCard - they send to most European addresses including the UK.  3. Link your existing credit & debit cards to the app.  4. Now use the Curve MasterCard to buy things online or in person or take cash from ATMs, just like a normal MasterCard. Curve does the currency conversion and puts the balance onto whichever of your debit or credit cards you choose.  You can even change your mind about which card it goes onto, within 14 days of the transaction.

I have a Curve Blue card myself - I get some commission if you sign up to Curve, but I'm recommending it here because it's great.  See details, download the app and get a Curve card - they'll give you £5 cashback through that link, too.

 

Express VPN

Get a VPN for safe browsing.  VPNs & why you need one explained...

When you're travelling you often use free WiFi in public places which may not be secure.  A VPN means your connection to the internet is encrypted & always secure, even using unsecured WiFi.  In countries such as China where access to Twitter & Facebook is restricted, a VPN gets around these restrictions.  And lastly, you can select the geographic location of the IP address you browse with, to get around geographic restrictions which some websites apply - for example one booking site charges a booking fee to non-European visitors but none to European visitors, so if you're not located in Europe you can avoid this fee by browsing with a UK IP address using a VPN.  VPNs & why you need one explainedExpressVPN is a best buy and I use it myself - I've signed up as an ExpressVPN affiliate, and if you go with expressvpn.com using the links on this page, you should see a special deal, 3 months free with an annual subscription, and I get a small commission to help support this site.

 


Back to home page