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This page explains how to travel by train from Berlin to other cities all over Europe, and how to buy tickets the cheapest way. Information current for 2024.

bullet pointBefore you buy your tickets

Take a moment to read these tips for buying European train tickets.  They answer all the usual questions, such as "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 €35 point-to-point ticket online?".  How far ahead can you 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...


Berlin to other destinations in Germany
Berlin to Munich from €17.50.  See the video
ICE4 at Munich Hbf

High-speed ICE trains link Munich & Berlin.  Several types operate this route including ICE1, ICE3, ICE4 & ICE-T.  More about ICE trains.  This is an ICE4 at Munich Hbf.

1st class on an ICE4 train   Restaurant car on an ICE4 train

1st class on an ICE4.

 

Restaurant car on an ICE4.  Sample menu.

Bar counter car on an ICE4 train   2nd class on an ICE4 train

Bar counter at the other end of the kitchen.

 

2nd class seats on an ICE4.

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Berlin to London & UK

Option 1, Berlin to London by high-speed train & Eurostar

A Eurostar e320 train at London St Pancras   Eurostar e320 first class seats

Eurostar e320 at St Pancras.  More about Eurostar.

 

1st class:  Standard Premier or Business Premier.

Eurostar e320 2nd class seats   Eurostar e320 cafe-bar

Standard class.  Larger photo.

 

One of two cafe-bars, cars 8 & 9.  Larger photo.

Option 2, Berlin to London using a Berlin-Brussels sleeper train.

Option 3, Berlin to London via the Hoek van Holland-Harwich ferry - the ferry alternative

 

Captain's Class cabin on the Harwich-Hoek ferry with double bed, complimentary minibar with sparkling wine, tea & coffee making facilities, hairdryer.  Larger photo.

 

Boarding the Stena Britannica at Harwich, a floating hotel to Hoek van Holland, with easy rail connections on either side of the Channel.  Restaurants, bars, shop, kennels, cinema.

Metropolitan restaurant on the Stena Line ferry  

Dinner before bed?

 

Standard outside cabin.  Larger photo.  360º photo.

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Berlin to Dublin & Ireland

Option 1, Berlin to Dublin via London & Holyhead - daily departures

Option 2, Berlin to Dublin via Paris & Cherbourg - several times a week

Irish Ferries' WB Yeats

Sail from Cherbourg to Dublin aboard Irish Ferries' WB YeatsWB Yeats photos courtesy of Irish Ferries.

Irish Ferries' WB Yeats club cabin   Irish Ferries' WB Yeats deluxe cabin

Club cabin on the WB Yeats with shower & toilet.

 

Deluxe cabin on the WB Yeats with shower & toilet.

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Berlin to Paris from €39.90

Option 1, Berlin to Paris in a day

An ICE3 (class 407) at Paris Gare de l'Est

A Germany-Paris ICE, at Paris Gare de l'Est More about Paris-Germany ICEs.

Bistro-restaurant on a class 407 ICE3   Lunch in the bistro on an ICE train

Bistro-restaurant car.

Lunch in the restaurant car.

2nd class seats on a class 407 ICE3   Class 407 ICE3 1st class seats

2nd class seats.

 

1st class seats.

Cafe-bar on a class 407 ICE3   Lunch served at a 1st class seat on an ICE train

Cafe-bar, at the other end of the restaurant car.

Meal served at my seat in 1st class.

Option 2, Berlin to Paris by Nightjet sleeper train, 3 times a week - the time-effective option, starts 10 December 2023

The Nightjet sleeper from Berlin to Zurich

A Nightjet sleeper train at Berlin HbfMore about Nightjets.

Nightjet deluxe 2-berth sleeper   Nightjet deluxe sleeper in day mode   Nightjet deluxe sleeper toilet & shower   Nightjet standard (economy) sleeper

Deluxe sleeper.  Each compartment can be used as a 1, 2 or 3-bed room.  Larger photoVideo of deluxe room

 

Same deluxe sleeper in evening/morning mode with beds folded away, seats folded out.  Larger photo.

 

Deluxe rooms have a compact shower & toilet, towels & hair/body wash provided.  Larger photo.

 

Standard sleeper set up as 2-berth, washstand open.  It can be used as a 1, 2 or 3 berth.  Larger photo.

6-berth couchettes   4-berth couchette on Nightjet train   Couchette car on Nightjet sleeper train

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Nightjet couchette car.

Option 3, Berlin to Paris by high-speed train with an overnight stop - also a time-effective option

Option 4, Berlin to Paris with an overnight stop in Amsterdam

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Berlin to Strasbourg

Option 1, Berlin to Strasbourg by sleeper

Option 2, Berlin to Strasbourg by daytime trains

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Berlin to Lyon, Avignon, Marseille, Nice & other cities in France

Option 1, using the direct TGV from Frankfurt to Lyon, Avignon, Aix en Provence & Marseille - recommended, avoids having to cross Paris!

Frankfurt to Marseille TGV

Step 1, Frankfurt to Marseille by direct TGV Duplex, seen here ready to leave Frankfurt am Main Hbf.

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.  360º photo.

First class on board a TGV Duplex   A TGV Duplex at Frankfurt

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

 

The TGV to Marseille, boarding at Frankfurt am Main Hbf.  You enter on the lower deck, with 9 stairs up to top deck.

Option 2, Berlin to Lyon & the South of France via Paris

Option 3, Berlin to Lyon & the South of France using the Berlin-Basel Nightjet sleeper train

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Berlin to Brussels & Bruges from €27.90

Option 1, Berlin to Brussels by European Sleeper - a time-effective option, 3 times a week

Sleeping-car set up as a single   4 or 6 berth couchette compartment

Private sleeper, can be set up as 1, 2 or 3 bed.

 

Couchette compartment, usable as 4 or 6 berth.

Option 2, Berlin to Brussels by Nightjet sleeper train - another time-effective option, 3 times a week starting 10 December 2023

The Nightjet sleeper from Berlin to Zurich

Berlin to Brussels by Nightjet.  Above, a Nightjet sleeper at Berlin Hbf.

Nightjet deluxe 2-berth sleeper   Nightjet deluxe sleeper in day mode   Nightjet deluxe sleeper toilet & shower   Nightjet standard (economy) sleeper

Deluxe sleeper.  Each compartment can be used as a 1, 2 or 3-bed room.  Larger photoVideo of deluxe room

 

Same deluxe sleeper in evening/morning mode with beds folded away, seats folded out.  Larger photo.

 

Deluxe rooms have a compact shower & toilet, towels & hair/body wash provided.  Larger photo.

 

Standard sleeper set up as 2-berth, washstand open.  It can be used as a 1, 2 or 3 berth.  Larger photo.

6-berth couchettes   4-berth couchette on Nightjet train   Couchette car on Brussels-Vienna sleeper

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Couchette car.

Option 3, Berlin to Brussels by high-speed train - the daytime option, every day

ICE second class   High-speed ICE train from Cologne to Berlin

2nd class seats.  Larger photo.

 

An ICE2 at Berlin Hbf.

ICE2 restaurant car   ICE2 bar car

Restaurant car.  Larger photo.

 

Bar car.  Larger photo.

ICE2 at Berlin   ICE first class

Boarding an ICE2 at Berlin Hbf.

 

1st class seats.  Larger photo.

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Berlin to Amsterdam from €37.90

Option 1, Berlin to Amsterdam by Intercity train - the daytime option

Amsterdam to Berlin InterCity train

A Berlin to Amsterdam InterCity train, arrived at Amsterdam Centraal.

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

1st class seats.  Larger photo.

 

2nd class seats.  Larger photo.

Option 2, Berlin to Amsterdam by European Sleeper - the time-effective overnight option, 3 times a week

Sleeping-car set up as a single   4 or 6 berth couchette compartment

Private sleeper, can be set up as 1, 2 or 3 bed.

 

Couchette compartment, usable as 4 or 6 berth.

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Berlin to Luxembourg from €37.90

Option 1, Berlin to Luxembourg by daytime trains

Double-deck train between Koblenz, Trier & Luxembourg

Koblenz to Luxembourg by double deck regional train.  This is a CFL double-decker at Luxembourg.

1st class on a Koblenz-Luxembourg train   1st class on a Koblenz-Luxembourg train

1st class on the upper deck. Larger photo.

 

2nd class on the upper deck.  Larger photo.

Scenery along the Moselle between Koblenz & Luxembourg

Scenery along the Moselle between Koblenz & Luxembourg in the morning sun, the mists still clearing.  For the best river views, sit on the right hand side of the train going east from Luxembourg, left hand side going west from Koblenz.

Option 2, Berlin to Luxembourg using the Berlin-Koblenz Nightjet sleeper train 3 times a week

The Nightjet sleeper from Berlin to Zurich

Berlin to Brussels by Nightjet.  Above, a Nightjet sleeper at Berlin Hbf.

Nightjet deluxe 2-berth sleeper   Nightjet deluxe sleeper in day mode   Nightjet deluxe sleeper toilet & shower   Nightjet standard (economy) sleeper

Deluxe sleeper.  Each compartment can be used as a 1, 2 or 3-bed room.  Larger photoVideo of deluxe room

 

Same deluxe sleeper in evening/morning mode with beds folded away, seats folded out.  Larger photo.

 

Deluxe rooms have a compact shower & toilet, towels & hair/body wash provided.  Larger photo.

 

Standard sleeper set up as 2-berth, washstand open.  It can be used as a 1, 2 or 3 berth.  Larger photo.

6-berth couchettes   4-berth couchette on Nightjet train   Couchette car on Brussels-Vienna sleeper

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Couchette car.

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Berlin to Basel, Zurich, Geneva & Switzerland from €37.90

Option 1, Berlin to Switzerland by sleeper train - the time-effective option

The Nightjet sleeper from Berlin to Zurich

The Nightjet sleeper from Berlin to Basel & Zurich, boarding on platform 3 at Berlin Hbf.

Nightjet deluxe 2-berth sleeper   Nightjet deluxe sleeper in day mode   Nightjet deluxe sleeper toilet & shower   Nightjet standard (economy) sleeper

Deluxe sleeper.  Each compartment can be used as a 1, 2 or 3-bed room.  Larger photoVideo of deluxe room

 

Same deluxe sleeper in evening/morning mode with beds folded away, seats folded out.  Larger photo.

 

Deluxe rooms have a compact shower & toilet, towels & hair/body wash provided.  Larger photo.

 

Standard sleeper set up as 2-berth, washstand open.  It can be used as a 1, 2 or 3 berth.  Larger photo.

6-berth couchettes   4-berth couchette on Nightjet train   Couchette car on Nightjet sleeper

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Nightjet couchette car at Zurich HB.

Option 2, Berlin to Switzerland by daytime train

ICE4 at Frankfurt Flughafen

An ICE4 at Frankfurt Flughafen.  Most Berlin-Switzerland ICEs are now ICE4.  Click on the interior images below for larger photos.

1st class on an ICE4 train   Restaurant car on an ICE4 train

1st class on an ICE4.

 

Restaurant car on an ICE4.

Bar counter car on an ICE4 train   2nd class on an ICE4 train

Bar counter, other end of the restaurant car.

 

2nd class seats on an ICE4.

Option 3, Berlin to Switzerland with overnight stop in Frankfurt - a time-effective option

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Berlin to Verona or Venice from €49.90

Option 1, Berlin to Venice by evening ICE to Munich & Nightjet sleeper train - the most time-effective option.

ICE3

Step 1, Berlin to Munich by ICE with restaurant car, power sockets at all seats & free WiFi.  Various types of ICE operate this route.  More about ICE trains.

2nd class on the Frankfurt-Brussels ICE3M train   1st class on the Frankfurt-Brussels ICE3M train

2nd class seats on an ICE3.  Larger photo.

 

1st class seats on an ICE3.  Larger photo.

ICE-T restaurant car   ICE-T restaurant car meal

Restaurant.

 

Dinner in the diner.

The Nightjet sleeper train from Munich to Venice at Munich Hbf

Step 2, Munich to Venice by Nightjet sleeper train, seen here on platform 12 at Munich HbfMore about Nightjets.

Nightjet deluxe sleeper, 2-bed   Nightjet deluxe sleeper toilet & shower   4-berth couchette compartment from Cologne to Vienna

2-berth deluxe sleeper.

 

...toilet & shower.

 

4-berth couchettes.

Sunrise as the sleeper train crosses the causeway into Venice

Sunrise as the Munich-Venice Nightjet crosses the causeway over the lagoon into Venice.  Courtesy of Andreas Wiedenhoff.

Option 2, Berlin to Venice in a single day from €49.90 - the daytime option with great scenery

EuroCity train from Munich to Innsbruck & beyond

A EuroCity train at Munich Hbf.  More photos & information about these Austrian EuroCity trains.

2nd class seats in an open-plan car   Austrian first class seats

2nd class seats, some in open-plan saloons like this, some in 6-seat compartments.

 

1st class leather seats.  You'll also find seats in classic 6-seat compartments.

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 3, Berlin to Venice  with overnight stop in Munich - as option 2, but with an overnight stop.

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Berlin to Florence, Rome, Milan, Verona or anywhere else Italy from €39.90

Option 1, Berlin to Italy using the Nightjet sleeper train from Munich to Milan, Bologna, Florence or Rome - the most time-effective option

Berlin to Munich ICE-T train at Leipzig

Step 1, Berlin to Munich by ICE with restaurant car, power sockets at all seats & free WiFi.  Various types of ICE operate between Berlin & Munich.  More about ICE trains.

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're served at your seat.  I recommend the Erdinger Weissbier!  See  current month's menu.

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.

The Nightjet sleeper from Munich to Rome

The Nightjet sleeper from Munich to Rome, boarding on platform 11 at Munich Hbf.

Nightjet deluxe 2-berth sleeper   Nightjet deluxe sleeper in day mode   Nightjet deluxe sleeper toilet & shower   Nightjet standard (economy) sleeper

Deluxe sleeper.  Each compartment can be used as a 1, 2 or 3-bed room.  Larger photoVideo of deluxe room

 

Same deluxe sleeper in evening/morning mode with beds folded away, seats folded out.  Larger photo.

 

Deluxe rooms have a compact shower & toilet, towels & hair/body wash provided.  Larger photo.

 

Standard sleeper set up as 2-berth, washstand open.  It can be used as a 1, 2 or 3 berth.  Larger photo.

6-berth couchettes   4-berth couchette on Nightjet train   Couchette car on Munich-Amsterdam sleeper

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Couchette car.

Option 2, Berlin to Florence or Rome in a single day - the daytime option with great scenery

EuroCity train from Munich to Innsbruck & beyond

A EuroCity train at Munich Hbf.  More photos & information about these Austrian EuroCity trains.

2nd class seats in an open-plan car   Austrian first class seats

2nd class seats, some in open-plan saloons like this, some in 6-seat compartments.

 

1st class leather seats.  You'll also find seats in classic 6-seat compartments.

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 3, Berlin to Italy via the Brenner Pass with overnight stop in Munich - as option 2 but with an overnight stop

Option 4, Berlin to Italy using the Berlin-Zurich Nightjet sleeper train, then a scenic ride through the Alps

Option 5, Berlin to Italy by daytime trains via Switzerland - also a scenic ride, in a day or with overnight stop

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Berlin to Barcelona, Madrid & Spain from €79

Option 1, Berlin to Spain using the Berlin-Paris Nightjet sleeper train, 3 times a week - the time-effective option, starts 10 December 2023

The Nightjet sleeper from Berlin to Zurich

Step 1, Berlin to Paris by Nightjet sleeper trainMore about Nightjets.

Nightjet deluxe 2-berth sleeper   Nightjet deluxe sleeper in day mode   Nightjet deluxe sleeper toilet & shower   Nightjet standard (economy) sleeper

Deluxe sleeper.  Each compartment can be used as a 1, 2 or 3-bed room.  Larger photoVideo of deluxe room

 

Same deluxe sleeper in evening/morning mode with beds folded away, seats folded out.  Larger photo.

 

Deluxe rooms have a compact shower & toilet, towels & hair/body wash provided.  Larger photo.

 

Standard sleeper set up as 2-berth, washstand open.  It can be used as a 1, 2 or 3 berth.  Larger photo.

6-berth couchettes   4-berth couchette on Nightjet train   Couchette car on Nightjet sleeper train

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Nightjet couchette car.

TGV Duplex at Paris Gare de Lyon

Step 2, Paris to Barcelona by TGV.  Here, a TGV Duplex is boarding at Paris Gare de Lyon More about the Paris-Barcelona journey.

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

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

 

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

First class a TGV Duplex upper deck   An TGV Duplex at Paris Est.

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

 

A TGV Duplex.  The 1 near the door indicates 1st class, a 2 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/Canigou.

Option 2, Berlin to Barcelona & Spain with overnight stop in Paris

Option 3, Berlin to Barcelona & Spain with overnight stop in Marseille

Frankfurt to Marseille TGV

Step 1, Frankfurt to Marseille by direct TGV Duplex, seen here ready to leave Frankfurt am Main Hbf.

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.  360º photo.

First class on board a TGV Duplex   A TGV Duplex at Frankfurt

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

 

The TGV to Marseille, boarding at Frankfurt am Main Hbf.  You enter on the lower deck, with 9 stairs up to top deck.

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 4, Berlin to Paris by high-speed train, French sleeper train to the Spanish border & onward Spanish trains

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Berlin to San Sebastian

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Berlin to Lisbon, Porto, Faro & Portugal

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Berlin to Andorra
Intercite de nuit overnight train at Paris Austerlitz

Paris to Toulouse or l'Hospitalet by Intercité de Nuit More about Intercités de Nuit.

Intercite de Nuit 2nd class 6-berth couchette   Intercite de Nuit 2nd class couchette

2nd class 6-berth couchettes.

 

A cosy 2nd class couchette.

Intercite de Nuit 1st class couchette   Intercite de Nuit 1st class 4-berth couchette

1st class couchette, made up for the night.

 

1st class 4-berth couchettes.

The castle at Foix

If you choose to go via l'Hospitalet, you stay on the sleeper train as it climbs into the Pyrenees south of Toulouse.  This is Foix, between Toulouse & l'Hospitalet.  The castle is on the right just south of the station.

Mountains in the Pyrenees

Beyond Foix, the sleeper train climbs higher into the mountains.

Mountain   l'Hospitalet station

...and arrives at Andorre-l'Hospitalet station, pictured above right.

Bus station next to Toulouse Matabiau station   Bus station next to Toulouse Matabiau station

Road transport to Andorra.  This is a Toulouse to Andorra bus at Toulouse bus stand 15.

 

The bus station in Toulouse Matabiau forecourt.  Photo courtesy of Andrew McIntyre.

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Berlin to Vienna from €37.90

Option 1, Berlin to Vienna by ICE train - a leisurely daytime option with restaurant car

Berlin to Vienna ICE train

The ICE Berolina.  On its first day of operation, 9 December 2018, the very first Berlin to Vienna Berolina arrives at Vienna Hbf spot on time.  More about ICE trainsCourtesy of Helmut Uttenthaler .

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 car.  I highly 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.

Option 2, Berlin to Vienna by railjet train departing 06:15 - another leisurely daytime option with restaurant car

Railjet train to Vienna at Berlin Hbf

The early morning railjet Vindobona to Vienna, about to leave Berlin Hbf platform 1.  More about railjetsCourtesy of Simon Anderson.

Economy seats on a Prague to Vienna Railjet train   1st class seats on a Czech Railjet train

Economy (2nd) class.  Mainly unidirectional seating but with some tables for 4.  All seats have power sockets & free WiFi.  Larger photo.

 

First class.  Mainly unidirectional, with some tables for 2 & tables for 4.  Larger photo

Restaurant car on a Prague-Vienna railjet train   Business class on a Czech railjet train

Restaurant car for snacks, meals, beer, wine, tea & coffee.  You don't need to reserve, just turn up & sit down.  Larger photo.

 

Business class = premium 1st class.  Just 6 seats at one end of the 1st class car.  Larger photo.

Option 3, Berlin to Vienna by nightjet sleeper train - the time-effective option

Nightjet sleeper train from Berlin to Vienna

The Nightjet sleeper from Berlin to Vienna, boarding on platform 11 at Berlin Hbf.

Nightjet deluxe 2-berth sleeper   Nightjet deluxe sleeper in day mode   Nightjet deluxe sleeper toilet & shower   Nightjet standard (economy) sleeper

Deluxe sleeper.  Each compartment can be used as a 1, 2 or 3-bed room.  Larger photoVideo of deluxe room

 

Same deluxe sleeper in evening/morning mode with beds folded away, seats folded out.  Larger photo.

 

Deluxe rooms have a compact shower & toilet, towels & hair/body wash provided.  Larger photo.

 

Standard sleeper set up as 2-berth, washstand open.  It can be used as a 1, 2 or 3 berth.  Larger photo.

6-berth couchettes   4-berth couchette on Nightjet train   Couchette car on Munich-Rome sleeper

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Couchette car on the Munich-Amsterdam Nightjet.

Option 4, Berlin to Vienna with overnight stop in Prague

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

So civilised!  A meal in the Czech restaurant car as the Berlin-Prague express snakes along the beautiful Elbe river south of Dresden.  Restaurant photo courtesy of Philip Dyer-Perry.

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Berlin to Salzburg, Innsbruck, Hallstatt & Austria from €29.90

Berlin to Salzburg or Innsbruck by daytime trains

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Berlin to Legoland, Odense & Copenhagen from €37.90

Option 1, Berlin to Copenhagen by daytime trains, daily all year round

Hamburg-Copenhagen train at Copenhagen

Hamburg to Copenhagen by EuroCity train.  From June 2023, these trains are being operated by former German Railways intercity cars and a Danish electric locomotive, until new trains being built by Talgo arrive in 2024.  The current trains have 1st & 2nd class, power sockets at seats, but no catering so bring your own food & drink.  More about the Hamburg-Copenhagen journey.

2nd clas seats on a DB Intercity train

2nd class seats are almost all open-plan like this.  There are a handful of 6-seat 2nd class compartments in one of the coaches, but only a few.

1st class comparment on a Berlin to Amsterdam train   1st class 6-seat compartment on a Berlin to Amsterdam train

The 1st class car has 6-seater compartments like this. Larger photo Larger photo.

Option 2, Berlin to Copenhagen by Snälltåget sleeper train, runs daily except Saturdays 1 April to 3 November 2024

The Snalltaget sleeper toHamburg & Berlin, at Stockholm Central

The Snälltåget sleeper from Berlin to Copenhagen & Stockholm.  This is in fact the southbound train at Stockholm Central the day the new service was launched, about to make its inaugural departure on 28 June 2021, postponed from May.  Courtesy of Robert Enskog.

Stockholm-Berlin couchette, day mode   Stockholm-Berlin couchette, night mode

The Snälltåget sleeper train uses ex-German Railways couchettes, sold as a whole private compartment for up to 6 people.  Bedding is provided, toilets & washrooms are at the end of the corridor.  Photos courtesy of Snalltaget.

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Berlin to Stockholm, Gothenburg & Malmö from €56.90

Option 1, Berlin to Stockholm by SJ EuroNight sleeper train - the time-effective option

Hamburg-StockholmSJ EuroNight at Hamburg Altona   6-berth couchette on the Hamburg-Stockholm SJ night train

The inaugural Hamburg to Stockholm SJ EuroNight train in Hamburg on 1 September 2022. The author rode this first departure.  More about this sleeper train.

6-berth couchettes.

Larger photo.

Standard sleeper, set up as a double   Hamburg-StockholmSJ EuroNight at Padborg

2-bed sleeper.  Larger photo.

The inaugural train from Hamburg to Stockholm calls at Padborg, just after entering Denmark.

Scenery from the Hamburg to Stockholm train

Typical Swedish scenery on the morning run into Stockholm.

Option 2, Berlin to Stockholm by train in a single day - the comfortable daytime option

Hamburg-Copenhagen train at Copenhagen

Hamburg to Copenhagen by EuroCity train:  From June 2023, these trains are temporarily being operated by former German Railways intercity cars and a Danish electric locomotive, until new trains being built by Talgo arrive in 2024.  The current trains have 1st & 2nd class, power sockets at seats, but no catering so bring your own food & drink.  More about the Hamburg-Copenhagen journey.

2nd clas seats on a DB Intercity train

2nd class seats are almost all open-plan like this.  There are a handful of 6-seat 2nd class compartments in one of the coaches, but only a few.

1st class comparment on a Berlin to Amsterdam train   1st class 6-seat compartment on a Berlin to Amsterdam train

The 1st class car has 6-seater compartments like this. Larger photo Larger photo.

An X2000 train at Stockholm Central

Copenhagen to Stockholm by tilting 200km/h X2000, seen at Stockholm CentralMore about X2000 trains.

1st class seats on a Copenhagen-Stockholm X2000 train 2nd class seats on a Copenhagen-Stockholm X2000 train

1st class on an X2000.  Larger photo.

 

2nd class on an X2000.  Larger photo.

Bistro seating area on a Copenhagen-Stockholm X2000 train   Bistro seating area on a Copenhagen-Stockholm X2000 train

Bistro seating on an X2000 train. Larger photo.

 

Bistro on an X2000 train. Larger photo.

On the Oresund link!

Crossing the impressive Öresund bridge from Denmark to Sweden.

Option 3, Berlin to Stockholm using the Malmö-Stockholm sleeper

Option 4, Berlin to Malmo & Stockholm by direct Snälltåget sleeper train, daily except Saturdays 1 April March to 3 November 2024

The Snalltaget sleeper toHamburg & Berlin, at Stockholm Central

The Snälltåget sleeper from Berlin to Copenhagen & Stockholm.  This is in fact the southbound train at Stockholm Central the day the new service was launched, about to make its inaugural departure.  Courtesy of Robert Enskog.

Stockholm-Berlin couchette, day mode   Stockholm-Berlin couchette, night mode

The Snälltåget sleeper train uses ex-German Railways couchettes, sold as a whole private compartment for up to 6 people.  Bedding is provided, toilets & washrooms are at the end of the corridor.  Photos courtesy of Snalltaget.

Option 5, Berlin to Gothenburg using Stena Line's Kiel-Gothenburg overnight ferry

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Berlin to Oslo & Norway

Option 1, Berlin to Oslo by train - by train all the way in a single day

Seats on the  Norwegian train from Gothenburg to Oslo   The Norwegian train from Gothenburg to Oslo, arrived at Oslo Central

Gothenburg to Oslo by Norwegian trainCourtesy of @Marcos Castro

 

The train arrived at Oslo Sentral.  Photos courtesy of @Marcos Castro.

Scenery from the Gothenburg to Oslo train

Scenery between Gothenburg & Oslo. Photo courtesy of @Simply_Railway.

Option 2, Berlin to Oslo with overnight stop in Copenhagen - also by train all the way

Option 3, Berlin to Oslo via the Kiel-Oslo cruise ferry - the most luxurious way to Oslo

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...

Option 4, Berlin to Oslo, by train to Copenhagen then DFDS overnight ferry to Oslo - cheaper than Color Line

DFDS ferry from Copenhagen to Oslo

The huge DFDS luxury overnight cruise ferry Crown Seaways berthed at Oslo.  Courtesy of Ivor Morgan.

Atrium on the ferry from Copenhagen to Oslo   Standard cabin on the ferry from Copenhagen to Oslo

The ferry is a floating hotel, with cabins, suites, restaurants, bars and entertainment.  The Pearl Seaways even features an outdoor jacuzzi but reportedly her sister ship Crown Seaways lacks this.  Courtesy of Andrew Leo.

1, 2, 3 or 4 berth standard cabin on the Crown Seaways with shower & toilet and satellite TV.  Larger photoCourtesy of Ivor Morgan.

Suite on the ferry   Suite on the ferry

Commodore Class suite with double bed on board the DFDS superferry to Oslo.  Courtesy of DiscoverByRail.com.

Sunset at sea on the DFDS ferry from Copenhagen to Oslo

Scenery in Oslo Fjord on the voyage to Norway.  Courtesy of Ivor Morgan.

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Berlin to Helsinki & Finland

Option 1, Berlin to Helsinki using a direct ferry from Germany - the easiest option

Finnlines ferry Travemunde-Helsinki

Finnlines operate the Finnstar, Finnmaid & Finnlady on the Travemünde-Helsinki route.  Photo courtesy of Hubert Bartkowiak.  Photos below courtesy of Chris Russell.

Cabin on Finnlines ferry Travemunde-Helsinki   Gym on Finnlines ferry   Sauna on Finnlines ferry

Standard cabin.  Larger photo.

 

Gym with a view.

 

Sauna.

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

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Berlin to Prague from €18.90
Czech restaurant car on a Berlin to Prague train   Lunch in the restaurant car between Berlin & Prague

A meal in the Czech restaurant car as the Berlin-Prague express snakes along the beautiful Elbe river south of Dresden.  See the Berlin to Prague page for times, fares, tips & how to buy ticketsPhoto courtesy of Philip Dyer-Perry.

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Berlin to Český Krumlov for €29.40
Czech restaurant car on a Berlin to Prague train   Lunch in the restaurant car between Berlin & Prague

A meal in the Czech restaurant car as the Berlin-Prague express snakes along the beautiful Elbe river south of Dresden.  See the Berlin to Prague page for times, fares, tips & how to buy ticketsPhoto courtesy of Philip Dyer-Perry.

Scenery along the river Elbe

Between Berlin & Prague the train runs along the pretty river Elbe, or Labe in Czech.  One of Europe's major rivers, the Elbe eventually flows into the North Sea at Cuxhaven near Hamburg.  Watch for river boats, even the occasional paddle steamer.  See the photos & video of this part of the journey here.

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Berlin to Karlovy Vary for €31

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Berlin to Brno for €27.90

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Berlin to Bratislava from €46.90

Option 1, Berlin to Bratislava by EuroNight sleeper train Metropol - the time-effective option, saves a hotel bill too

EuroNight sleeper train from Berlin to Budapest

The Berlin to Budapest sleeper train Metropol, boarding at Berlin Hbf.  More about this sleeper train.

Sleeper compartment in the Hungarian sleeping-car from Budapest to Berlin   6-berth couchettes on train to Budapest

1, 2 or 3 bed sleeper, set up as a 2 bed.  Larger photo.

 

4 or 6-berth couchettes.  Larger photo.

Option 2, Berlin to Bratislava by EuroCity train - the direct daytime option

The EuroCity train Hungaria about to leave Berlin Hbf for Budapest

The EuroCity train Hungaria about to leave Berlin Hbf for Bratislava & Budapest.

1st classopen-plan seats on the EuroCity train Hungaria Berlin-Budapest   1st class compartment on a Hungarian EuroCity train

1st class.  You can choose to sit in a 1st class open plan (saloon) car like this...  Larger photo.

 

...or in a 1st class car with side corridor & classic 6-seat compartments like this.  Larger photo.

2nd class seats on the EuroCity train Hungaria Berlin-Budapest   2nd class seats on the EuroCity train Hungaria Berlin-Budapest

2nd class.  You can choose to sit in a 2nd class open plan (saloon) car like this...  Larger photo.

 

...or in a 2nd class car with side corridor & classic 6-seat compartments like this.   Larger photo.

2nd class seats on the EuroCity train Hungaria Berlin-Budapest   The restaurant car of the Hungaria from Berlin to Budapest

Lunch on the Hungaria.  There are no table reservations, just go along & sit down.  Courtesy of @_DiningCar.

 

Restaurant car on the Hungaria Larger photo.  Photo courtesy of Siddhartha Verma.

Scenery along the river Elbe

Between Dresden & Prague the train runs along the pretty river Elbe, or Labe in Czech.  One of Europe's major rivers, the Elbe eventually flows into the North Sea at Cuxhaven near Hamburg.  Watch for river boats, even the occasional paddle steamer.  See the photos & video of this part of the journey here.

Option 3, Berlin to Bratislava by daytime trains - alternative daytime options

Berlin to Vienna ICE train

Step 1, Berlin to Vienna on the ICE Berolina.  On its first day of operation, 9 December 2018, the very first Berlin to Vienna Berolina arrives at Vienna Hbf spot on time.  More about ICE-T trainsCourtesy of Helmut Uttenthaler .

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 car.  I highly 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.

The train from Vienna to Bratislava, at Vienna Huaptbahnhof...   Inside the hourly train from Vienna to Bratislava...

Step 2, Vienna to Bratislava by regional express train. More about Vienna-Bratislava trains.

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Berlin to Poprad-Tatry & Kosice from €46.90

Option 1, Berlin to the Tatra mountains in a day

Option 2, Berlin to the Tatra mountains using the Prague-Slovakia sleeper - the most time-effective option, with dinner in Prague

Option 3, Berlin to the Tatra mountains using the Berlin-Bratislava sleeper - also a time-effective option

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Berlin to Budapest from €37.90

Option 1, Berlin to Budapest by sleeper - the time-effective option

EuroNight sleeper train from Berlin to Budapest

The Berlin to Budapest sleeper train Metropol, boarding at Berlin Hbf.  More about this sleeper train.

Sleeper compartment in the Hungarian sleeping-car from Budapest to Berlin   6-berth couchettes on train to Budapest

1, 2 or 3 bed sleeper, set up as a 2 bed.  Larger photo.

 

4 or 6-berth couchettes.  Larger photo.

Option 2, Berlin to Budapest by EuroCity train Hungaria - the direct daytime option

The EuroCity train Hungaria about to leave Berlin Hbf for Budapest

The EuroCity train Hungaria about to leave Berlin Hbf for Bratislava & Budapest.

1st classopen-plan seats on the EuroCity train Hungaria Berlin-Budapest   1st class compartment on a Hungarian EuroCity train

1st class.  You can choose to sit in a 1st class open plan (saloon) car like this...  Larger photo.

 

...or in a 1st class car with side corridor & classic 6-seat compartments like this.  Larger photo.

2nd class seats on the EuroCity train Hungaria Berlin-Budapest   2nd class seats on the EuroCity train Hungaria Berlin-Budapest

2nd class.  You can choose to sit in a 2nd class open plan (saloon) car like this...  Larger photo.

 

...or in a 2nd class car with side corridor & classic 6-seat compartments like this.   Larger photo.

2nd class seats on the EuroCity train Hungaria Berlin-Budapest   The restaurant car of the Hungaria from Berlin to Budapest

Lunch on the Hungaria.  There are no table reservations, just go along & sit down.  Courtesy of @_DiningCar.

 

Restaurant car on the Hungaria Larger photo.  Photo courtesy of Siddhartha Verma.

Scenery along the river Elbe

Between Dresden & Prague the train runs along the pretty river Elbe, or Labe in Czech.  One of Europe's major rivers, the Elbe eventually flows into the North Sea at Cuxhaven near Hamburg.  Watch for river boats, even the occasional paddle steamer.  See the photos & video of this part of the journey here.

Option 3, Berlin to Budapest by day trains - alternative daytime option

Berlin to Vienna ICE train

Step 1, Berlin to Vienna on the ICE Berolina.  On its first day of operation, 9 December 2018, the very first Berlin to Vienna Berolina arrives at Vienna Hbf spot on time.  More about ICE-T trainsCourtesy of Helmut Uttenthaler.

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 car.  I highly 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.

A railjet train from Vienna to Budapest, arrived at Budapest Keleti

Step 2, Vienna to Budapest by railjet.  This is a railjet on platform 9 at Budapest KeletiMore about railjets.

First class seats on a railjet train   Economy class seats on a railjet train

First class.

 

Economy (2nd) class.

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Berlin to Bucharest, Brasov & Romania

Option 1, Berlin-Budapest by sleeper, day at leisure in Budapest, Budapest to Brasov & Bucharest by sleeper - the most time-effective option

  • Spend a day in Budapest.  Left luggage lockers are available.  If you have a ticket for a single or double sleeper you can use the 1st class lounge on platform 9 at Budapest Keleti for an hour or two after arrival and before departure.

  • Step 2, travel from Budapest to Romania by sleeper train Ister, leaving Budapest Keleti at 19:10 & arriving Brasov 08:50 & Bucharest Gara de Nord 11:30 next day.

    This sleeper train Ister has an air-conditioned Romanian sleeping-car with 1, 2 & 3 bed compartments with washbasin and a Romanian couchette car with 4 & 6 berth compartments, and ordinary seats.  There's wonderful almost Alpine scenery through the Carpathian mountains between Brasov and Bucharest, a real treat.  Ister is the ancient name for the Danube.

    Fares start at €39 with a couchette in 6-berth, €46 with a couchette in 4-berth, €69 with a bed in a 3-bed sleeper, €84 with a bed in a 2-bed sleeper or €162 with a single-bed sleeper all to yourself.  All prices per person per berth.  Fares vary like air fares, so book ahead.

    Book this train at the Romanian Railways website bileteinternationale.cfrcalatori.ro.

    Click EN top right for English.  Booking opens up to 90 days ahead.  For Bucharest type Bucuresti.  It can book seats, couchettes or sleepers.  You print your own ticket.

    You can also book at the Hungarian Railways website www.mav-start.hu, see my advice on using it.  For Bucharest type Bucuresti.  You show your ticket in the MAV app on your phone.

EuroNight sleeper train from Berlin to Budapest

Step 1, Berlin to Budapest by sleeper train, see here boarding at Berlin Hbf.

Sleeper compartment in the Hungarian sleeping-car from Budapest to Berlin   6-berth couchettes on train to Budapest

1, 2 or 3 bed sleeper, set up as a 2 bed.  Larger photo.

 

4 or 6-berth couchettes.  Larger photo.

2-berth sleeper on the Ister   The Ister at Bucharest Nord

A 1, 2 or 3-bed sleeper with washbasin.  Larger photo.

 

Step 2, Budapest to Romania by sleeper.  This is the sleeping-car on the westbound Ister at Bucharest.  Courtesy of DiscoverByRail.

Couchette car on the Ister EuroNight train from Budapest to Bucharest   Romanian couchette car from Vienna to Bucharest

The vagon cuseta (couchette car) on the westbound Ister, boarding at Bucharest.  Couchettes convert from bunks at night to seats by day.  Courtesy of @AndyBTravels, DiscoverByRail.com.

 

4 or 6-berth couchettes.  Larger photo.

Option 2, Berlin-Vienna by day train, Vienna to Sighisoara, Brasov & Bucharest by Dacia Express - the fastest option

  • Step 1, travel from Berlin to Vienna by ICE-T train Berolina, leaving Berlin Hbf at 10:04 every day, arriving Vienna Hbf at 17:47.

    It has a restaurant car, power sockets at all seats & free WiFi, see the ICE information page.  In 1st class food & drink orders are taken & served at your seat, no need to visit the restaurant.  This train is routed through Germany via Nuremberg.

    Fares start at €37.90 in 2nd class or €69.90 in 1st class.  Fares vary like air fares, so book ahead.

    Book at the German Railways website int.bahn.de.

    Booking opens up to 6 months ahead.  You print your own ticket or show it on your laptop or phone.  I recommend registering when prompted, so you can log on at any time and check or reprint tickets.

  • Step 2, travel from Vienna to Romania on the EuroNight sleeper train Dacia Express, leaving Vienna Hbf at 19:42 every evening and arriving next day in Simeria 07:10, Sighisoara 09:13, Braşov 12:36, Ploeşti Vest 14:28 & Bucharest Nord at 15:06.

    The Dacia Express has modern & comfortable Romanian sleeping-cars (1, 2 & 3 bed compartments, including a couple of deluxe sleepers with shower & toilet) and couchettes (4-berth & 6-berth compartments).  There's wonderful Alpine-style scenery through the Carpathian mountains between Brasov and Bucharest, a real treat.

    The Dacia Express also conveys a portion from Vienna to Cluj Napoca, also leaving Vienna Hbf at 19:42 and arriving Cluj Napoca at 10:47. This portion has a Romanian couchette car with 4 & 6 berth compartments, and ordinary seats.

    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-berth sleeper, €99 with a bed in a 3-berth sleeper or €159 with a bed in a single-berth sleeper all to yourself.  All per person per berth.  Fares vary like air fares, so book ahead.

    Book this train at the Austrian Railways website www.oebb.at.

    Booking normally opens 90 days ahead.  In the search results, look for the direct train marked D with no changes.  If it says not available you can't book it, but if a Sparschiene fare is shown you can.  You collect tickets from an ÖBB ticket machine in Vienna.

    You can also book this train at the Romanian Railways website bileteinternationale.cfrcalatori.ro.

    Click EN top right for English.  Booking opens up to 90 days ahead.  For Vienna type Wien, for Bucharest type Bucuresti.  It can book seats, couchettes or sleepers.  For Austria to Romania journeys you now print your own ticket or can show it on your laptop or phone.  Tip:  Prices might be cheaper than on oebb.at, so check both sites!

    Tip:  If you like, you can check the consist for this train, check car numbers & see in what order cars for different destinations are marshalled using www.vagonweb.cz.  Change cs to English upper left, then click Train formations, scroll down to Austria & click D, then look for Dacia.

Berlin to Vienna ICE train

Step 1, Berlin to Vienna on the ICE Berolina.  On its first day of operation, 9 December 2018, the very first Berlin to Vienna Berolina arrives at Vienna Hbf spot on time.  More about ICE-T trainsCourtesy of Helmut Uttenthaler.

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 car.  I highly 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.

Dacia Express sleeper at Vienna   Dacia Express sleeper at Vienna

Step 2, Vienna to Romania on the Dacia Express.  The Dacia has an air-conditioned Romanian sleeping-car of their most modern type.  Each compartment can be sold as a single, double or triple.  Most have a washbasin, two compartments have a shower & toilet.  Beds fold away to form a private sitting room for day use.  Sleeper photo courtesy of @PaliparanDotCom.  Larger photo.

Romanian couchette car from Vienna to Bucharest   Dacia Express couchette car

The Dacia Express couchette car, boarding at Vienna Hbf.  There is one Romanian couchette car with 4 & 6-berth compartments, bedding provided.  Larger photo.

Scenery in Transylvania

Transylvania:  The Dacia Express crosses rural Transylvania.  Courtesy of @PaliparanDotCom

Dacia Express Carpathian mountains

The Carpathian mountains:  Almost Alpine scenery between Brasov & Bucharest.  Courtesy of @PaliparanDotCom.

Option 3, Berlin to Romania by daytime trains with overnight stop in Budapest - if you prefer daytime trains & hotels

The daytime train from Budapest to Bucharest

The daytime train from Budapest to Bucharest has modern air-conditioned Romanian carriages.  Three cars travel all the way, additional cars are attached whilst in Hungary, and additional cars and a bar car are attached between Drobeta Turnu Severin & Bucharest.

The 'Transylvania' train to Brasov about to leave Budapest   2nd class on the Budapest to Bucharest train

On the left, the daytime train to Bucharest is about to leave Budapest Keleti.

 

Comfortable 2nd class seats on the Budapest to Bucharest train.  There are power outlets under the tables.  Larger photo.

Bar stools on the Budapest to Bucharest train   Bar car on the Budapest to Bucharest train

A bar car is attached between Drobeta Turnu Severin & Bucharest.  Photos courtesy of @AndyBTravels, DiscoverByRail.com.

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Berlin to Ljubljana, Zagreb, Rijeka, Sarajevo, Split, Dubrovnik

Option 1, Berlin to Ljubljana & Zagreb in a single day

Scenery in the Austrian Alps between Munich & Ljubljana

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

Scenery between Ljubljana & Zagreb

Scenery between Ljubljana & Zagreb along the river Sava.

Option 2, Berlin to Munich by day train then Munich to Zagreb by sleeper - the most comfortable & time-effective option

ICE3

Step 1, Berlin to Munich by ICE with restaurant car, power sockets at all seats & free WiFi.  Various types of ICE operate this route.  More about ICE trains.

2nd class on the Frankfurt-Brussels ICE3M train   1st class on the Frankfurt-Brussels ICE3M train

2nd class seats on an ICE3.  Larger photo.

 

1st class seats on an ICE3.  Larger photo.

ICE-T restaurant car   ICE-T restaurant car meal

Restaurant.

 

Dinner in the diner.

The 'Lisinski' sleeper train from Munic to Zagreb, boarding in Munich

Step 2, Munich to Ljubljana or Zagreb by sleeper train.  Above, the air-conditioned Croatian sleeping-car from Munich to Zagreb is boarding on platform 12 at Munich Hbf.  It has 10 compartments with washbasin, each of which can be used as 1, 2 or 3 berth, with toilets at the end of the corridor.  Compartments convert to a private sitting room for evening or morning use.  A light breakfast is included in the sleeper fare.

The Croatian couchette car is the next vehicle to the right, also modern & air-conditioned with 4 & 6 bunk compartments, ideal for families.  Couchettes convert from bunks to seats for evening or morning use.

Sleeper compartment in the Croatian sleeping-car from Munich to Zagreb   Sleeper compartment in the Croatian sleeping-car from Munich to Zagreb   4 or 6-berth couchettes on train from Munich to Zagreb

1, 2 or 3 bed sleeper.

 

Set up as a single-berth.

 

4 or 6-berth couchettes. 360º photo.

Scenery between Ljubljana, Zagreb & Belgrade

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

Option 3, Berlin to Vienna by sleeper then onward daytime train to Ljubljana & Zagreb

Option 4, Berlin to Budapest by sleeper then onward daytime train

EuroNight sleeper train from Berlin to Budapest

Step 1, Berlin to Budapest by sleeper train Metropol, seen here boarding at Berlin Hbf.

Sleeper compartment in the Hungarian sleeping-car from Budapest to Berlin   6-berth couchettes on train to Budapest

1, 2 or 3 bed sleeper, set up as a 2 bed.  Larger photo.

 

4 or 6-berth couchettes.  Larger photo.

Intercity train Agram from Budapest to Zagreb

Step 2, Budapest to Zagreb by Intercity train Agram, seen here at Budapest Deli with the Croatian car in the foreground, the Hungarian car  next to it, older Hungarian cars going as far as the border at the front.

2nd class seats on the Budapest to Zagreb train Agram   2nd class seats on the Budapest to Zagreb train Agram

2nd class compartment in the Croatian car.

 

2nd class open-plan seats in the Hungarian car.

Lake Balaton seen from the Budapest to Zagreb train

The train runs along the southern shore of Lake Balaton, Hungary's largest lake.  Courtesy of Della Mcvay.

Sunflowers seen from the train from Budapest to Zagreb

The train passes fields of sunflowers.  Courtesy of Louise Donnelly.

Option 5, by daytime trains with overnight hotel in Munich - if you prefer day trains & hotel to sleepers

Option 6, by daytime trains with overnight hotel in Budapest - if you prefer day trains & hotel to sleepers

Option 7, using the Regiojet sleeper train from Prague to Rijeka - summer-only, 3 times a week, cheapest.

Regiojet overnight train   Regiojet couchette compartment

The holiday train.  Above left, Regiojet overnight train at Prague Hlavni.  Above right, a 4-berth couchette compartment on this train, in daytime mode.  The seat back hinges up to form the upper berths.

Regiojet arrived in Croatia   Berth on the Regiojet train to Croatia

Arrived in Croatia.

 

Couchette.

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Berlin to Belgrade & Montenegro

Option 1, Berlin to Belgrade using the Munich-Zagreb sleeper

ICE3

Step 1, Berlin to Munich by ICE with restaurant car, power sockets at all seats & free WiFi.  Various types of ICE operate this route.  More about ICE trains.

2nd class on the Frankfurt-Brussels ICE3M train   1st class on the Frankfurt-Brussels ICE3M train

2nd class seats on an ICE3.  Larger photo.

 

1st class seats on an ICE3.  Larger photo.

ICE-T restaurant car   ICE-T restaurant car meal

Restaurant.

 

Dinner in the diner.

The 'Lisinski' sleeper train from Munic to Zagreb, boarding in Munich

Step 2, Munich to Ljubljana or Zagreb by sleeper train.  Above, the air-conditioned Croatian sleeping-car from Munich to Zagreb is boarding on platform 12 at Munich Hbf.  It has 10 compartments with washbasin, each of which can be used as 1, 2 or 3 berth, with toilets at the end of the corridor.  Compartments convert to a private sitting room for evening or morning use.  A light breakfast is included in the sleeper fare.

The Croatian couchette car is the next vehicle to the right, also modern & air-conditioned with 4 & 6 bunk compartments, ideal for families.  Couchettes convert from bunks to seats for evening or morning use.

Sleeper compartment in the Croatian sleeping-car from Munich to Zagreb   Sleeper compartment in the Croatian sleeping-car from Munich to Zagreb   4 or 6-berth couchettes on train from Munich to Zagreb

1, 2 or 3 bed sleeper.

 

Set up as a single-berth.

 

4 or 6-berth couchettes. 360º photo.

Scenery between Ljubljana, Zagreb & Belgrade

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

2nd class seats in a Serbian air-conditioned train   The train from Belgrade to Zagreb & Zurich, about to leave Belgrade

Step 3, Zagreb to Belgrade by Serbian train.  There's no catering, so bring your own food & drink.

Option 2, Berlin to Belgrade with overnight stop in Budapest - slower, but by train all the way

Serbian local train of the type used between Subotica and Novi Sad

Serbian local train of the type used between Szeged & Subotica and Subotica & Novi Sad.  They are air-conditioned, 2nd class only, with toilets.  Courtesy of @AndyBTravels, DiscoverByRail.com.

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Berlin to Sofia

Option 1, Berlin to Sofia via Bucharest

Option 2, Berlin to Sofia via Belgrade

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Berlin to Warsaw from €27.90:  See the Berlin-Warsaw EuroCity train page
Berlin to Warsaw train at Berlin

A Berlin-Warsaw EuroCity train at Berlin Hbf.

1st class compartment on a Berlin to Warsaw train.   2nd class car on the Berlin to Warsaw train

1st class compartment.

 

2nd class, some like this, some in compartments.

 

The bar.

 

Decent food, served on proper china.

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Berlin to Krakow from €27.90

Option 1, Berlin to Krakow by EuroCity train - the daytime option

Berlin to Warsaw train at Berlin Hbf

This is the Berlin-Krakow Wawel, boarding on platform 11 at Berlin Hbf.

1st class compartment on a Berlin to Warsaw train.   2nd class car on the Berlin to Warsaw train

1st class seats on the Berlin-Krakow Wawel.

 

2nd class open-plan car.  Some seats are in compartments.

Restaurant car on the Berlin to Warsaw train

Restaurant car.

Food in therestaurant car on the Berlin-Krakow train   Food in therestaurant car on the Berlin-Krakow train

Zurek soup - an excellent tasty starter.

 

Kotlet schabowy, served on proper china.

Option 2, Berlin to Krakow using the Poznan-Krakow sleeper - the  time-effective option with dinner in Poznan

Polish sleeping-car   Polish 2-bed sleeper in day mode

Polish sleeping-car of the older type used on the Stettin-Poznan-Krakow train.

 

2-bed sleeper.

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Berlin to Wroclaw from €27.90

Option 1, Berlin to Wroclaw by EuroCity train

Wroclaw Glowny trainshed

The excellent EuroCity train Wawel from Berlin, arrived at Wroclaw Glowny.

1st class compartment on a Berlin to Warsaw train.   2nd class car on the Berlin to Warsaw train

1st class seats on the Wawel.

 

2nd class, some like this, some in compartments.

Restaurant car on the Berlin to Warsaw train

Restaurant car.

Food in therestaurant car on the Berlin-Krakow train   Food in therestaurant car on the Berlin-Krakow train

Zurek soup - an excellent tasty starter.

 

Kotlet schabowy, served on proper china.

Wroclaw Glowny station exterior

Wroclaw Glowny, one of Europe's most beautiful stations.

Option 2, Berlin to Wroclaw by Kulturzug regional train on Fridays & Saturdays from 19 April 2024 until autumn 2024.

The weekend Berlin to Wroclaw train  

The weekends-only train from Berlin to Wroclaw.  Courtesy of DiscoverByRail.com.

Option 3, Berlin to Wroclaw with a change at Poznan or Rzepin - if none of the direct trains suit you

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Berlin to Gdansk & Gdynia from €27.90

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Berlin to Szczecin (Stettin) for €13.80

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Berlin to Vilnius, Riga & Tallinn

Berlin to Lithuania with overnight stop in Warsaw

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Berlin to Lviv, Kyiv & Ukraine from €85

Option 1, Berlin to Ukraine using the Warsaw to Kyiv sleeper - a good option

Berlin to Warsaw train at Berlin

Step 1, Berlin to Warsaw by EuroCity train with air-conditioned 1st & 2nd class coaches, most with compartments and side corridor like this, others with open-plan seating.  Above, a train to Warsaw about to leave Berlin Hbf.

1st class compartment on a Berlin to Warsaw train.   2nd class car on the Berlin to Warsaw train

1st class compartment.

 

2nd class open-plan car.  Some seats are in compartments.

The Warsaw to Kiev train at Warsaw Centralna

Step 2, Warsaw to Kyiv by sleeper.  This is the Kyiv ExpressCourtesy of DiscoverByRail.com.

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

1, 2 or 3-bed sleeper.

 

Washbasin.

 

Kyiv Express.

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Berlin to Moscow, St Petersburg & Russia

Option 1, Berlin to Moscow by twice-weekly Swift sleeper train - runs via Belarus.  Suspended due to war in Ukraine.

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.  The axles adjust automatically from standard European gauge (4' 8½") to Russian 5' gauge at Brest, as the train passes slowly through a special gauge-changing shed.   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 2, Berlin to Moscow using the daily Warsaw-Moscow sleeper train.

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

Option 4, Berlin to Moscow via Kyiv - this route avoids Belarus

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Berlin to Athens, Corfu & Greece

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

Superfast ferry from Bari to Patras in Greece

The ferry Superfast II from Bari to Patras, boarding at Bari.  Photos courtesy of DiscoverByRail.com.

Boarding the ferry from Italy to Greece   Lounge and reception desk on the ferry to Greece

The passenger gangway, onto the ferry.

 

Reception desk & lounge on the ferry.

Lounge & bar on the ferry from Italy to Greece   Self-service restaurant on the ferry from Italy to Greece

Lounge and bar on the Superfast II.

 

Self-service restaurant.

En suite toilet & shower on ferry to Greece   Cabin on ferry from Italy to Greece

Private cabin with en suite toilet & shower.

Scenic views from the ferry from Italy to Greece

The ferry passes Cephalonia & Ithaca then approaches mainland Greece.  This is what travel to Greece should be like!

The ferry from Bari arrives at Patras

The ferry approaches the new port of Patras.

Option 2, Berlin to Athens overland by train via Munich & Belgrade - no longer viable

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Berlin to Istanbul & Turkey

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Hotels in Berlin & other cities

For advice on hotels in Berlin, see the hotels section on the Berlin station page.

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

Booking.com is my favourite hotel booking site and I generally use it to book all my hotels in one place.  I've come to trust booking.com's review scores, you won't be disappointed with any hotel that scores 8.0 or more.  Crucially, booking.com usually lets you book with free cancellation, which means you can confirm accommodation risk-free before train booking opens and/or you can hold accommodation while you finalise your itinerary and alter your plans as they evolve - a feature I use all the time when planning a trip.  I never book hotels non-refundably!

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.

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