Trains from Venice

 

small bullet point  See Venice Santa Lucia station information

small bullet point  Map of Venice showing stations

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This page explains how to travel by train from Venice 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 all the usual questions, "Do I need to book in advance or can I just buy at the station?", "Can I stop off?", "Are there Senior fares?" and that old favourite, "Should I buy an $800 railpass or just buy a €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...

Which station in Venice?

Venice Santa Lucia is the main station in Venice, often abbreviated to Venezia SL, located in the city of Venice itself on the banks of the Grand Canal, 20 minutes walk from the Rialto Bridge and 27 minutes walk from St Mark's Square.  Trains reach the station by running over a causeway across the lagoon.  On this page, 'Venice' means Venice Santa Lucia unless it says otherwise.  Map of Venice showing stationsSee Venice Santa Lucia station information.

Venice Mestre is an industrial area on the mainland at which most trains call on their way into or out of Venice S.L.  So always make sure you buy tickets to or from Venice Santa Lucia, unless you specifically want Mestre.


Venice to other Italian towns & cities from €9.90, www.italiarail.com
Venice to Florence, Rome & Naples...
Venice to Verona...
Venice to Trieste...
Venice to Pompeii, Sorrento, Amalfi...
Venice to Palermo, Catania, Siracuse & Sicily...

Option 1, by daytime train.  Venice to Sicily in a single day, an epic ride...

  • You can travel from Venice to Palermo, Catania or Siracuse by train in a single day, albeit with a very early start and late evening arrival.  You take a Frecciarossa or Frecciargento train from Venice Santa Lucia to Rome Termini or Naples Centrale, then the afternoon InterCity train from Rome Termini or Naples Centrale to Sicily.

    The journey takes you along the coast past cliffs and beaches to the toe of Italy, then the Naples-Palermo/Catania/Siracuse train gets shunted onto a ferry to cross the Straits of Messina, a unique experience, have your camera ready.  There's no catering car on the InterCity train, so bring your own picnic and bottle of wine or beer.

  • Fares start at €39.80 in 2nd class or €59.80 in 1st class.  Fares vary like air fares so book ahead.

  • Buy tickets at either www.raileurope.com, www.italiarail.com or Italian Railways' own site www.trenitalia.com.

    Tip:  I'd allow at least 45 minutes between trains in Rome or Naples, if necessary book each train separately.

    All 3 sites sell the same tickets, all offer ticketless travel for Italian intercity & high-speed trains, you simply quote your booking reference on board the train.  Booking opens up to 4 months ahead, except when the mid-June & mid-December timetable changes are imminent when the booking horizon shrinks to less than this with some trains loaded before others.

    1.  www.raileurope.com is easy to use, it's written in plain English, it can be used in €, £ or $. There's a small booking fee.

    2.  www.italiarail.com is also easy to use, it's in plain English, it can be used in €, £, $ & Aus$.  They charge a €3.50 booking fee but they'll refund this if you email seat61@italiarail.com with your PNR after you book.  A key advantage is that it can be cheaper than Trenitalia.com for 2 or more people travelling together as explained here.

    3.  www.trenitalia.com is fairly easy to use but you need to use Italian-language place names and it has a few quirks, especially when booking sleepers, so see this advice on using it.

Option 2, by high-speed train to Rome then overnight sleeper.  The time-effective option...

  • Step 1, take an early-evening Frecciarossa or Frecciargento train from Venice Santa Lucia to Rome Termini in around 3h50. 

  • Step 2, take one of the two direct sleeper trains from Rome to Palermo, Catania or Siracuse, one usually leaving Rome Termini around 21:05 weekdays or 21:31 weekends, the later one at around 23:00.  Make sure you allow at least 1 hour between trains in Rome.  In the morning these sleeper trains are shunted onto a ferry to cross the Straits of Messina, a unique experience, have your camera ready.  They arrive in Sicily next morning.

  • These sleeper trains have Comfort couchettes with 4-berth compartments, ideal for families.  They also have sleeping-cars with 1, 2 & 3 bed compartments with washbasin.  The couchettes convert to seats for daytime use, the sleepers convert to a private sitting room with sofa.  There's no restaurant car (although morning tea or coffee is provided), so bring your own picnic and bottle of wine or beer.  See more information & photos of Italian domestic sleeper trains.

  • Florence to Rome starts at €19.90, then Rome to Sicily starts at €39.90 including a Comfort couchette or from €79.90 with a bed in a cosy 2-bed sleeper.  Book ahead for Trenitalia's cheap Super-Economy and Economy prices.

  • Buy tickets at either www.raileurope.com or www.italiarail.com.  If you'd like longer in Rome between trains (perhaps plan to have dinner there, or an afternoon wander) book each train separately, it makes no difference to the price.

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Venice to London from €74...

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Venice to Paris from €29...

Option 1, Venice to Paris by train in a day - fastest, cheapest...

  • Step 2, travel from Milan to Paris by high-speed TGV, leaving Milan Porta Garibaldi at 14:40 and arriving Paris Gare de Lyon at 22:12.

    The TGV has a cafe-bar, power sockets at all seats & free WiFi.  It's a scenic & relaxing run, at slow speed through the mountains then a high-speed dash to Paris at up to 300 km/h (186 mph), see the Paris-Milan TGV video guide.  Bring a good book and bottle of wine, and make it a relaxing afternoon with your feet up, although some scenery will be in darkness depending on the time of year.  For more information, photos & tips, see the Paris-Milan TGV page.

  • How much does it cost? 

    Venice to Turin or Milan by Frecciarossa starts at €19.90 in standard class or €29.90 in business class.

    Milan or Turin to Paris by TGV starts at €29 in 2nd class or €44 in 1st class.

    Fares vary like air fares, book ahead for the cheapest prices.

  • How to buy tickets...

    The best place to buy tickets is at www.raileurope.com as it connects to both the Trenitalia and SNCF ticketing systems so you can book all your tickets together in one place, in plain English, in €, £ or $.  Booking opens up to 4 months ahead.  There's a small booking fee.

    Book from Venice Santa Lucia to Paris (any station) as one journey, with desired departure time set to 10:00.

    Tip:  Before running the enquiry, click More options, enter Turin Porta Susa and set stopover time to at least 45 minutes.  This ensures a robust connection.  In the search results, look for an option shown with just 1 change.  If you'd like longer in Turin, increase the stopover duration and set an earlier departure time.

    The Italian train is ticketless, you simply quote the booking reference on board.  For the French TGV, you print your own ticket or can select a mobile ticket to show on your smartphone.

    You can also book at www.thetrainline.com if you prefer, this also connects to both the Italian & French ticketing systems, but it doesn't have a stopover duration feature so I'd book each train separately to ensure at least 45 minutes between trains in Turin.

  • How to buy tickets, advanced...

    Alternatively, you can book each train separately, more work, more fiddly, same fares, but saves the booking fee.

    Step 1, book the train from Venice to Milan or Turin at www.italiarail.com (easy to use, recognises English-language place names and they'll refund the €3.50 booking fee if you email seat61@italiarail.com afterwards) or www.trenitalia.com (you'll need to use Italian place names).  It's ticketless, you just quote the booking reference on the train.

    Step 2, book the TGV from Turin to Paris at the French Railways website en.oui.sncf.  You print your own tickets or can show a mobile ticket on your smartphone.

Frecciarossa 500 train at Milan Centrale

Step 1, take a Frecciarossa 500 high-speed train from Venice to Milan or Turn.  The name means Red Arrow.  This is a Frecciarossa 500 at Milan CentraleSee more information about Frecciarossas & explanation of their 4 classes.

Frecciarossa 500 train standard class   Frecciarossa 500 train business (1st) class

Premium class seats on a Frecciarossa 500.

 

Business (1st) class on a Frecciarossa 500.

TGV train from Paris to Milan about to leave Paris Gare de Lyon

Step 2, take a French TGV high-speed train from Milan or Turin to Paris.  This is a Milan-Turin-Paris TGV at Paris Gare de Lyon.  There's no check-in, just be on board at departure time...

TGV bar car   Food on board the TGV from Milan to Paris

Step 2, take the TGV from Milan or Turin to Paris...  Above left, the cafe-bar serving drinks, snacks & hot dishes  Above right, the cheese platter from the cafe-bar.  Larger bar photo.

TGV interior by Christian Lacroix, second class   TGV 1st class by Christian Lacroix

A table for four in 2nd class on the TGV.  360 degree photo

 

1st class seats on the Paris-Milan TGV.  360 degree photo.

Mountains from the TGV train to Italy

Take a good book, a bottle o' red, and enjoy the scenery from Italy to Paris with your feet up.  These are mountains in France... Watch the Paris-Milan TGV video guide!

Scenery from the train between Oulx and Turin

And these are mountains in Italy.  Scenery between Oulx and Turin, courtesy of www.discoverbyrail.com.

Option 2, Venice to Paris with an overnight stop in Turin...

To see all the scenery in daylight you can use high-speed daytime trains with an overnight stop in Turin from just €48.  The overnight stop breaks up the trip nicely and allows you to see something of wonderful Turin.  This would probably be my own first choice!

Option 3, Venice to Paris via the Bernina Express & Swiss Alps from €96 - much slower, but the ultimate Alpine scenic experience...

  • Stay overnight in Zurich.  For something really special, the 5-star Hotel Schweizerhof is one of my favourite hotels anywhere, just across the road from the station.  They'll even send a uniformed commissionaire to meet you & carry your bags from the train.  For something cheaper, also next to the station with great reviews, try the 4-star Hotel St Gotthard or the excellent 3-star Hotel St. Josef, 7 minutes walk from the station, see walking map.  If you're on a tight budget you can book private rooms in a one-star hotel or backpacker hostel near the station at www.hostelworld.com.  Alternatively, you could stop overnight in the pleasant town of Chur instead.

First class seats   Bernina Express panormaic cars

Bernina Express 1st class seats...

 

the Bernina Express uses panoramic carriages...

The train descends from the Bernina Pass

The Bernina Express descends from the Bernina Pass...

Option 4, by sleeper train...

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Venice to Nice, Cannes, Monte Carlo...
Frecciarossa 500 train at Milan Centrale

Step 1, take a high-speed Frecciarossa from Venice to Milan in 2h17 at up to 300 km/h (186 mph).  This is a Frecciarossa 500 at Milan CentraleMore information about Frecciarossas & explanation of the 4 classes.

Frecciarossa 500 train standard class   Frecciarossa 500 train business (1st) class

Premium class seats on a Frecciarossa 500.

 

Business (1st) class on a Frecciarossa 500.

Frecciabianca train at Milan Centrale

Step 2, take an Intercity or Frecciabianca train from Milan to Ventimiglia in around 3h45.  Here, a Frecciabianca is boarding at the magnificent Milan Centrale...

2nd class   1st class

2nd class.  Larger photo.

 

1st class.  Larger photo.

TER train at Juans-les-Pins station

Step 3, take a TER local train from Ventimiglia to Monaco, Nice & Cannes.  Ventimiglia to Nice takes an hour along the coast.  Here, a TER rolls into Juan les Pins station, between Nice & Cannes.

Coastal scenery between Nice & Ventimiglia

Coastal scenery from the upper deck of the TER from Ventimiglia to Nice & Cannes...

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Venice to Brussels, Bruges & Belgium from €64...

Option 1, by daytime TGV via Paris with overnight stop in Turin...

  • How much does it cost?

    Venice to Turin starts at €19.90 in 2nd class or €29.90 in 1st class.

    Turin to Paris starts at €29 in 2nd class or €44 in 1st class.

    Paris to Brussels starts at €29 in 2nd class or €71 in 1st class.

    Fares vary like air fares, book ahead for the cheapest prices.

  • How to buy tickets...

    The easiest place to buy tickets is at www.raileurope.com as it connects to both the Trenitalia and SNCF ticketing systems so you can book all your tickets together in one place, in plain English, in €, £ or $.  Booking opens up to 4 months ahead.  There's a small booking fee.

    First book Venice to Milan or Turin & add to basket.  Then book Milan or Turin to Brussels for the following day, add to basket & check out.

    Tip:  Before running the Milan or Turin to Brussels enquiry, click More options and enter Paris (any station) as a via point with a stopover duration of at least 1 hour to ensure a robust connection.  If you don't do this, the system allows cross-Paris connections as tight as 40 minutes, which I consider too tight.

    The Italian train is ticketless, you just quote the booking reference on board.  For the two French trains, you print your own tickets or can select a mobile ticket to show on your smartphone.

  • How to buy tickets, advanced...

    Alternatively, you can book each train separately, more work, more fiddly, same fares, but saves the booking fee.  First book the Italian train at www.italiarail.com (easy to use, in €, $ or £, they'll refund the €3.50 booking fee to seat61 users if you email them at seat61@italiarail.com afterwards) or www.trenitalia.com (in €, more fiddly, requires Italian-language place names, see advice on using it), then book the TGV & Thalys at the French Railways website en.oui.sncf.

Option 2, Venice to Innsbruck through the scenic Brenner Pass, Nightjet sleeper train to Cologne & ICE to Brussels.

  • Step 1, travel from Venice to Innsbruck by EuroCity train, leaving Venice Santa Lucia at 13:35 every day, arriving Innsbruck Hbf at 18:36.

    This is a wonderful journey, over the causeway across the lagoon from central Venice to the mainland, over to Verona and up the wonderfully scenic Brenner Pass with lunch in the elegant Austrian restaurant car. A real treat, see the Brenner Pass scenery photos & video here.

    Fares start at €19.90 in 2nd class or €39.90 in 1st class.  Fares vary like air fares, book ahead for the cheapest prices.

    Buy this ticket at www.thetrainline.com (easy to use, in €, £ or $, overseas credit cards no problem, small booking fee)  or www.bahn.de (in €, no fee).  Booking opens up to 6 months ahead.  You print your own ticket or show it on your smartphone or laptop.

    Tip:  You've time for dinner before boarding the sleeper, I recommend the excellent Tyrolean food at the Restaurant Europastόberl, part of the Grand Hotel Europa just across the road from the station and to the right.

    Tip:  If you have a sleeper ticket, you can use the ΦBB first class lounge at Innsbruck Hbf between trains, with free WiFi and complimentary tea, coffee, soft drinks & snacks.

  • Step 2, travel from Innsbruck to Cologne by Nightjet sleeper train, leaving Innsbruck Hbf at 20:44 and arriving Cologne Hbf at 06:51.

    This comfortable Austrian Nightjet train has an air-conditioned Comfortline sleeping-car with nine 1, 2 & 3-berth standard compartments with washbasin and three 1, 2 or 3-berth deluxe compartments with shower & toilet. There are toilets & a shower at the end of the corridor for passengers in the regular sleepers.  The sleeping-car attendant can serve drinks, snacks & light meals from a room service menu.  The train has couchette cars with 4 & 6 berth compartments, and ordinary seats.  A light breakfast is included in sleepers & couchettes, served in your compartment.  See the Nightjet page for a guide to on-board accommodation, travel tips, photos & video.

    Fares start at €49.90 in 6-berth couchettes, €59.90 in 4-berth couchettes, €89.90 in a 3-bed sleeper, €109.90 in a 2-bed sleeper or €159.90 in a single-bed sleeper, all per person per berth.

    Book this train at www.thetrainline.com (easy to use, in €, £ or $, overseas credit cards no problem, small booking fee) or the Austrian Railways website www.oebb.at (in €, more fiddly, same fares). Booking opens up to 6 months ahead and you print your own ticket.

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

  • Step 3, travel from Cologne to Brussels by high-speed ICE train, leaving Cologne Hbf at 07:42 and arriving Brussels Midi at 09:35.

    The ICE train has a restaurant car, power sockets at all seats & free WiFi.

    Fares start from €18.90 in 2nd class or €27.90 in 1st class.  Fares vary like air fares, book ahead for the cheapest prices.

    Book this at the German Railways website www.bahn.deBooking opens up to 6 months ahead.  You print your own ticket or can show it on your laptop or smartphone.  I recommend registering when prompted so you can log in & check your bookings or re-print tickets at any time.

Step 1, Venice to Innsbruck by Austrian EuroCity train.  This is the restaurant car on a EuroCity at Verona.  You don't need to book a table, just go along & sit down.  Dining on the move as the scenery glides by is one of the pleasures of trains like this...

Austrian second class seats   Austrian first class seats

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

 

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

Austrian restaurant car   Meal in an Austrian restaurant car on a Munich-Verona train

The elegant restaurant car.  See larger photo.

Lunch with wine on board...

Mountains on the Brenner route between Verona & Innsbruck...

The Nightjet sleeper at Innsbruck

Step 2, Innsbruck to Cologne by Nightjet sleeper train Above, a Comfortline sleeping-car on the Nightjet train about to leave Innsbruck.  More information about Nightjet trains.

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 photo Video 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 couchettes   Couchette car on sleeper train

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Nightjet couchette car...

A high-speed ICE3 train at Cologne Hbf

Step 3, Cologne to Brussels by ICE.  Above, an ICE3 at Cologne HbfMore information about ICE.

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

2nd class seats on an ICE3M.  Larger photo.

 

1st class seats on an ICE3M.  Larger photo.

Erdinger Weissbier on the Frankfurt-Brussels ICE train   Restaurant car on the Frankfurt-Brussels ICE3M train

Food is served on china with metal cutlery.  I recommend the Erdinger Weissbier!  See current month's menu.

 

Restaurant car:  This is the small 12-seat restaurant on an ICE3M.  Larger photo.

Option 3, by day trains with overnight stop in Munich - Easy, scenic, ideal if you prefer day trains to sleepers...

Option 4, using the Venice-Munich Nightjet sleeper train - a time-effective option... 

  • Step 1, travel from Venice to Munich by Nightjet sleeper train, leaving Venice Santa Lucia at 21:05 and arriving Munich Hbf at 06:10.

    This comfortable Austrian Nightjet train has an air-conditioned Comfortline sleeping-car with nine 1, 2 & 3-berth standard compartments with washbasin and three 1, 2 or 3-berth deluxe compartments with shower & toilet. There are toilets & a shower at the end of the corridor for passengers in the regular sleepers.  The sleeping-car attendant can serve drinks, snacks & light meals from a room service menu.  The train has couchette cars with 4 & 6 berth compartments, and ordinary seats.  A light breakfast is included in sleepers & couchettes, served in your compartment.  See the Nightjet page for a guide to on-board accommodation, travel tips, photos & video.

    Fares start at €49.90 in 6-berth couchettes, €59.90 in 4-berth couchettes, €69.90 in a 3-bed sleeper, €89.90 in a 2-bed sleeper or €139.90 in a single-bed sleeper, all per person per berth.

    Book this train at www.thetrainline.com (easy to use, in €, £ or $, overseas credit cards no problem, small booking fee) or at the Austrian Railways website www.oebb.at (in €, a bit more fiddly, same fares). Booking opens up to 6 months ahead and you print your own ticket.

  • Step 2, travel from Munich to Brussels by ICE train, leaving Munich Hbf at 07:28, change at Frankfurt Flughafen, arriving Brussels Midi 15:35.

    ICE trains have a restaurant car, power sockets at all seats & free WiFi.

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

    Book this at the German Railways website www.bahn.deBooking opens up to 6 months ahead.  You print your own ticket or can show it on your laptop or smartphone.  I recommend registering when prompted so you can log in & check your bookings or re-print tickets at any time.

The Nightjet train from Vienna to Venice, arrived at Venice Santa Lucia

Venice to Munich by Nightjet...  Above, the Venice-Munich Nightjet at Venice Santa Lucia.

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 photo Video 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 sleeper train

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Nightjet couchette car...

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Venice to Amsterdam from €79.80...

Option 1, Venice to Amsterdam in a single day - runs daily except Saturdays...

ETR610 EuroCity train at Milan Centrale

An ETR610 at Milan Centrale, as used on the direct Milan-Frankfurt EuroCity train.  More information about ETR610 trains.

1st class table for two   1st class seats on an ETR610 train

Table for 4 in 2nd class, ideal for families...

 

1st class seats on the ETR610 EuroCity train...

Lake Maggiore, seen from the train

Lake Maggiore, seen over lunch in the restaurant car...

The restaurant car on an ETR610 EuroCity train   Meal on a Swiss EuroCity train between Switzerland & Milan

The restaurant car on an ETR610...

 

Dinner in the diner...

Option 2, Venice to Innsbruck via the scenic Brenner Pass, then Nightjet sleeper train to Amsterdam - the comfortable, scenic & time-effective option.

  • Step 2, travel from Innsbruck to Amsterdam by Nightjet sleeper train, leaving Innsbruck Hbf 20:44 & arriving Amsterdam Centraal 09:58.

    This comfortable Austrian Nightjet train has an air-conditioned Comfortline sleeping-car with nine 1, 2 & 3-berth standard compartments with washbasin and three 1, 2 or 3-berth deluxe compartments with shower & toilet. There are toilets & a shower at the end of the corridor for passengers in the regular sleepers.  The sleeping-car attendant can serve drinks, snacks & light meals from a room service menu.  The train has couchette cars with 4 & 6 berth compartments, and ordinary seats.  A light breakfast is included in sleepers & couchettes, served in your compartment.  See the Nightjet page for a guide to on-board accommodation, travel tips, photos & video.

    Fares start at €49.90 in 6-berth couchettes, €59.90 in 4-berth couchettes, €89.90 in a 3-bed sleeper, €109.90 in a 2-bed sleeper or €159.90 with a single-bed sleeper all to yourself, all per person per berth.

    Book this train at www.thetrainline.com (easy to use, in €, £ or $, overseas credit cards no problem, small booking fee) or Austrian Railways own site www.oebb.at (same prices, in €, more fiddly). Booking opens up to 6 months ahead and you print your own ticket.

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

Step 1, Venice to Innsbruck by Austrian EuroCity train.  This is the restaurant car on a EuroCity at Verona.  You don't need to book a table, just go along and sit down.  Dining on the move as the scenery glides by is one of the pleasures of trains like this...

Austrian second class seats   Austrian first class seats

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

 

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

Austrian restaurant car   Meal in an Austrian restaurant car on a Munich-Verona train

The elegant restaurant car.  See larger photo.

Lunch with wine on board...

Mountains on the Brenner route between Verona & Innsbruck...

The Nightjet sleeper at Innsbruck

Step 2, Innsbruck to Amsterdam by Nightjet sleeper train Above, a Comfortline sleeping-car on the Nightjet train about to leave Innsbruck.  More information about Nightjet trains.

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 photo Video 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 couchettes   Couchette car on sleeper train

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Nightjet couchette car...

Option 3, Venice to Amsterdam by day trains with overnight stop in Munich - Easy, scenic, ideal if you prefer day trains to sleepers...

The restaurant car on a EuroCity to Munich, seen at Verona.  You don't need to book a table, just go along and sit down.  Dining on the move as the scenery glides by is one of the pleasures of trains like this.  More photos & information about these EuroCity trains.

Austrian second class seats   Austrian first class seats

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

 

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

Austrian restaurant car   Meal in an Austrian restaurant car on a Munich-Verona train

The elegant restaurant car.  See larger photo.

Lunch with wine on board...

Hilltop fortresses seen from the Brenner Pass train

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

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

Vineyards, mountains and castles south of Brenner as the train heads from Verona to Innsbruck...

Mountains on the Brenner route...

Option 4, Venice to Amsterdam using the Venice-Munich Nightjet sleeper train - a comfortable and time-effective option... 

  • Step 1, travel from Venice to Munich by Nightjet sleeper train, leaving Venice Santa Lucia at 21:05 & arriving Munich Hbf at 06:10.

    This comfortable Austrian Nightjet train has an air-conditioned Comfortline sleeping-car with nine 1, 2 & 3-berth standard compartments with washbasin and three 1, 2 or 3-berth deluxe compartments with shower & toilet. There are toilets & a shower at the end of the corridor for passengers in the regular sleepers.  The sleeping-car attendant can serve drinks, snacks & light meals from a room service menu.  The train has couchette cars with 4 & 6 berth compartments, and ordinary seats.  A light breakfast is included in sleepers & couchettes, served in your compartment.  See the Nightjet page for a guide to on-board accommodation, travel tips, photos & video.

    Fares start at €49.90 in 6-berth couchettes, €59.90 in 4-berth couchettes, €69.90 in a 3-bed sleeper, €89.90 in a 2-bed sleeper or €139.90 in a single-bed sleeper, all per person per berth.

    Book this train at www.thetrainline.com (easy to use, in €, £ or $, overseas credit cards no problem, small booking fee) or at the Austrian Railways website www.oebb.at (in €, a bit more fiddly, same fares). Booking opens up to 6 months ahead and you print your own ticket.

  • Step 2, travel from Munich to Amsterdam by ICE train, leaving Munich Hbf at 07:45, making one easy change at Frankfurt (Main) Hbf and arriving Amsterdam Centraal at 15:28.  ICE trains have a bistro-restaurant car, power sockets at all seats & free WiFi.

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

    Book this at the German Railways website www.bahn.de. Booking opens up to 6 months ahead.  You print your own ticket or can show it on your laptop or smartphone.  I recommend registering when prompted so you can log in & check your bookings or re-print tickets at any time.

The Nightjet train from Vienna to Venice, arrived at Venice Santa Lucia

Venice to Munich by Nightjet...  Above, the Venice-Munich Nightjet at Venice Santa Lucia.

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 photo Video 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 sleeper train

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Nightjet couchette car...

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Venice to Luxembourg...

Option 1, Venice to Munich by Nightjet sleeper train then daytime trains to Luxembourg - the most time-effective option

  • Step 1, travel from Venice to Munich by Nightjet sleeper train, leaving Venice Santa Lucia at 21:05 every night and arriving Munich Hbf at 06:10.

    This comfortable Austrian Nightjet train has an air-conditioned Comfortline sleeping-car with nine 1, 2 & 3-berth standard compartments with washbasin and three 1, 2 or 3-berth deluxe compartments with shower & toilet. There are toilets & a shower at the end of the corridor for passengers in the regular sleepers.  The sleeping-car attendant can serve drinks, snacks & light meals from a room service menu.  The train has couchette cars with 4 & 6 berth compartments, and ordinary seats.  A light breakfast is included in sleepers & couchettes, served in your compartment.  See the Nightjet page for a guide to on-board accommodation, travel tips, photos & video.

    Fares start at €49.90 in 6-berth couchettes, €59.90 in 4-berth couchettes, €69.90 in a 3-bed sleeper, €89.90 in a 2-bed sleeper or €139.90 in a single-bed sleeper, all per person per berth.

    Book this train at www.thetrainline.com (in €, £ or $, overseas credit cards no problem, small booking fee) or the Austrian Railways website www.oebb.at (same prices, a bit more fiddly, in €, no fee). Booking opens up to 6 months ahead and you print your own ticket.

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

  • Step 2, travel from Munich to Luxembourg, leaving Munich Hbf at 07:28 by ICE train, change at Mannheim & Trier, arriving Luxembourg 14:24.

    Fares start at €32.90 in 2nd class.  Fares vary like air fares, book ahead for the cheapest prices.

    Book from Munich to Luxembourg at the German Railways website www.bahn.de, allowing at least 1 hour between trains in Munich. 

    Booking opens up to 6 months ahead.  You print your own ticket or can show it on your laptop or smartphone.  I recommend registering when prompted so you can log in & check your bookings or re-print tickets at any time.

    Tip:  To avoid buses and get an all-train journey, click Add intermediate stops and enter Igel as a via station.

The Nightjet train from Vienna to Venice, arrived at Venice Santa Lucia

Venice to Munich by Nightjet...  Above, the Venice-Munich Nightjet at Venice Santa Lucia.

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 photo Video 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 sleeper train

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Nightjet couchette car...

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

  • Day 1, travel from Venice to Zurich by direct EuroCity train, leaving Venice Santa Lucia at 17:18 and arriving Zurich HB at 23:27.

    By all means leave earlier for more of an evening in Zurich, although earlier departures involve a change of train at Milan Centrale.

    Fares for the direct train start at €39 in 2nd class or €59 in 1st class.  Fares vary like air fares, so book ahead.

    Buy tickets at www.raileurope.com or www.thetrainline.com, both easy to use, in €, £ or $, small booking fee.  Booking usually opens up to 90 days ahead.  It's ticketless, you simply quote the booking reference on board.

  • Stay overnight in Zurich.  For something really special, the 5-star Hotel Schweizerhof is one of my favourite hotels anywhere, just across the road from the station.  They'll even send a uniformed commissionaire to meet you & carry your bags from the train.  For something cheaper, also next to the station with great reviews, try the 4-star Hotel St Gotthard or the excellent 3-star Hotel St. Josef, 7 minutes walk from the station, see walking map.  If you're on a tight budget you can book private rooms in a one-star hotel or backpacker hostel near the station at www.hostelworld.com.

  • Day 2, travel from Zurich to Luxembourg on any service you like.

    For example, leaving Zurich HB at 07:59, changing at Mannheim & Trier, arriving Luxembourg at 15:24.

    Or have a leisurely breakfast and take the easiest departure with just 1 change, leaving Zurich HB at 10:59 by direct EuroCity train EC8 to Koblenz, time for coffee in Koblenz, then the 17:06 from Koblenz direct to Luxembourg arriving 19:24.

    These are all comfortable air-conditioned trains and they all head along the scenic Rhine Valley route between Mainz and Koblenz past vineyards, castles, river boats & the legendary Lorelei Rock, see the Rails Down the Rhine page, then along the pretty Moselle river to Trier.  The whole journey is made on a through ticket, so no worries about connections, they normally go like clockwork.  There are earlier or later departures, too, just check online.

    Tip:  EuroCity train EC8 has a Swiss 1st class panorama car, to book it, see the advice on the Rails Down the Rhine page.

    Fares start at €39.90 in 2nd class or €69.90 in 1st class.  Fares vary like air fares, so book ahead.

    Book from Munich to Luxembourg at the German Railways website www.bahn.deBooking opens up to 6 months ahead.  You print your own ticket or show it on your laptop or smartphone.  I recommend registering when prompted so you can log in & check your bookings or re-print tickets at any time.

    Tip:  To get an all-train journey and avoid journeys with a bus, click Add intermediate stops and enter Igel as a via station.

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Venice to Geneva, Zurich, Lucerne, Basel, Zermatt & Switzerland from €18...

Choose between fast, comfortable & scenic (using mainline trains, either option 1 direct or option 2 with a change in Milan) and slow, comfortable, fabulous world-class highlight-of-your-trip scenic (option 3, via the narrow-gauge Bernina Express).

Option 1, there are two daily direct trains from Venice to Switzerland - first see if these direct trains suit your schedule...

Option 2, by fast train to Milan, then EuroCity train from Milan to Brig, Geneva, Bern, Basel, Zurich, Lucerne - if the direct trains don't suit you...

ETR610 EuroCity train at Milan Centrale

An ETR610 train used on Milan-Switzerland EuroCity trains and the direct Venice-Geneva & Venice-Zurich trains.  More information about Switzerland-Italy EuroCity trains.

1st class table for two   1st class seats on an ETR610 train

Table for 4 in 2nd class, ideal for families...

 

1st class seats...

The restaurant car on an ETR610 EuroCity train   Meal on a Swiss EuroCity train between Switzerland & Milan

Restaurant car...

 

Dinner in the diner, northbound...

Lake Maggiore, seen from the train

This is Lake Maggiore, seen from the restaurant car of the 11:25 Milan to Basel EuroCity train over an excellent lunch of salmon tagliatelle & excellent Swiss red wine...

Sion castle, see from the train to Venice

Sion castle, as seen from a Venice to Geneva train.  This route train passes through the famous Simplon Tunnel, opened in 1906, on the very route used by the celebrated Simplon Orient Express of Agatha Christie fame.

Lake Lugano, seen from a Milan to Zurich train

This is Lake Lugano, seen from a Venice-Milan-Zurich EuroCity train...

Option 3, the ultimate scenic ride, Venice to St Moritz, Chur, Zurich via the Bernina route.  This is much slower and a little more fiddly to book, but it's an amazing experience, arguably the best Swiss Alpine train ride of them all...

First class seats   Bernina Express panormaic cars

Bernina Express 1st class seats...

 

the Bernina Express uses panoramic carriages...

The train descends from the Bernina Pass

The Bernina Express descends from the Bernina Pass...

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Venice to Barcelona, Madrid & Spain...

Option 1, by daytime trains with overnight stop in Marseille - the most direct option...

TER train at Juans-les-Pins station

By TER local train from Ventimiglia to Nice.  Here, a TER rolls into Juan les Pins station, between Nice & Cannes.

Coastal scenery between Nice & Ventimiglia

Coastal scenery from the upper deck of the TER from Ventimiglia to Nice & Cannes...

AVE S100 at Barcelona Sants

Marseille to Barcelona by AVE.  This is an AVE-S100 at Barcelona Sants.

 

1st class seats on an AVE S100.  360Ί 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.  360Ί photo of 2nd class More photos & info about AVE S100.

Mt Canigou in the Pyrenees

Mt Canigou & the Pyrenees...  Seen from the train and one of the highest peaks in the mighty Pyrenees, the 2,784m (9,137 feet) high Mt Canigou dominates the skyline all the way from Girona to Perpignan...

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

ETR610 EuroCity train at Milan Centrale

Venice to Geneva by EuroCity train, seen here at Milan CentraleMore information about these EuroCity trains.

1st class table for two   1st class seats on an ETR610 train

Table for 4 in 2nd class, ideal for families...

 

1st class seats...

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

Restaurant car...

 

Lunch!

Lake Leman, seen from a Geneva-Milan train

The view from the train:  Lake Leman on a wintry day.

AVE S100 at Barcelona Sants

Lyon to Barcelona by AVE.  This is an AVE-S100 at Barcelona Sants.

 

1st class seats on an AVE S100.  360Ί 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.  360Ί photo of 2nd class More photos & info about AVE S100.

Mt Canigou in the Pyrenees

Mt Canigou & the Pyrenees...  Seen from the train and one of the highest peaks in the mighty Pyrenees, the 2,784m (9,137 feet) high Mt Canigou dominates the skyline all the way from Girona to Perpignan...

Option 3, Italy to Barcelona by luxury cruise ferry...

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Venice to Lisbon & Portugal...

Option 1, via Barcelona & Madrid...

Option 2, Venice to Faro & the Algarve using a bus from Seville...

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Venice to Andorra...

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

Travel from Toulouse to Andorra by bus, seen at bus stand 15.  The bus station is right next to the rail station.

 

Bus station in Toulouse Matabiau forecourt.  Photos courtesy of Andrew McIntyre.

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Venice to Berlin from €39.90

Option 1, Venice to Berlin in a single day - a chill-out day via the scenic Brenner Pass...

The restaurant car on a EuroCity from Verona to Munich, seen at Verona.  You don't need to book a table, just go along and sit down.  Dining on the move as the scenery glides by is one of the pleasures of trains like this.  More photos & information about these Austrian EuroCity trains.

Austrian second class seats   Austrian first class seats

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

 

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

Austrian restaurant car   Meal in an Austrian restaurant car on a Munich-Verona train

The elegant restaurant car.  See larger photo.

Lunch with wine on board...

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

Vineyards, mountains and castles south of Brenner as the train heads from Verona to Innsbruck...

Mountains on the Brenner route...  See the Brenner Pass scenery video here

Option 2, Venice to Munich by Nightjet sleeper train, then on to Berlin by ICE train - the time-effective option...

The Nightjet train from Vienna to Venice, arrived at Venice Santa Lucia

Step 1, Venice to Munich by Nightjet sleeper train...  Above, the Nightjet at Venice Santa Lucia.

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 photo Video of deluxe room

 

The 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 sleeper train

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Nightjet couchette car...

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

2nd class seats.  Larger photo.

 

Step 2, Munich to Berlin by ICE...

ICE2 restaurant car   ICE2 bar car

Restaurant car.  Larger photo.

 

Bar car.  Larger photo.

ICE2 at Berlin   ICE first class

Boarding an ICE at Berlin Hbf...

 

1st class seats.  Larger photo.

Option 3, Venice to Berlin using the Zurich-Berlin sleeper...

  • Step 1, travel from Venice to Milan by Frecciarossa, leaving Venice Santa Lucia at 11:48 and arriving Milan Centrale at 14:15.

    The Frecciarossa has a cafe-bar, power sockets at all seats & free WiFi.

    Fares start at €19.90 in 2nd class or €29.90 in 1st class.  Fares vary like air fares, book ahead for the cheapest prices.

    Book this train at www.thetrainline.com (easy to use, in €, £ or $, overseas credit cards no problem, small booking fee) or www.trenitalia.com (in €, requires Italian language place names, see advice on using it).  It's ticketless, you just quote your booking reference on board.

  • Step 2, travel from Milan to Zurich by EuroCity train, leaving Milan Centrale at 15:10 and arriving Zurich HB at 18:27.

    The EuroCity train has a restaurant car, power sockets at all seats & free WiFi.  It's a lovely run through the Alps, past Italian and Swiss lakes and passing through the world's longest railway tunnel, the Gotthard Base Tunnel.  Have dinner in Zurich, I can recommend the steak-frites and a beer at the Brasserie Federal on the main concourse at Zurich HB.

    Fares start at €29 in 2nd class or €49 in 1st class.  Fares vary like air fares, book ahead for the cheapest prices.

    Book this train at www.thetrainline.com (easy to use, in €, £ or $, overseas credit cards no problem, small booking fee) or www.trenitalia.com (in €, requires Italian language place names, see advice on using it).  Booking opens up to 90 days ahead.  It's ticketless, you just quote your booking reference on board.

  • Step 3, travel from Zurich to Berlin by Nightjet sleeper train, leaving Zurich HB at 19:59 and arriving Berlin Hbf at 07:38.

    This comfortable Austrian Nightjet train has two air-conditioned double-deck sleeping-cars (1 & 2 bed compartments with washbasin, 1 & 2 bed deluxe compartments with shower & toilet, plus a few 3-berth compartments with washbasin), couchette cars with 4 & 6 berth compartments & ordinary seats.  The sleeper & couchette fares include a light breakfast with tea or coffee in the morning, see the Nightjet information page.

    Fares start at €49.90 in 6-berth couchettes, €59.90 in 4-berth couchettes, €69.90 in a 3-bed sleeper, €89.90 in a 2-bed sleeper or €139.90 in a single-bed sleeper, all per person per berth.

    Book this train at www.thetrainline.com (easy to use, in €, £ or $, overseas credit cards no problem, small booking fee) or at the Austrian Railways website www.oebb.at (in €, more fiddly, same prices).  Booking opens up to 6 months ahead and you print your own ticket.

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

The Nightjet sleeper from Berlin to Zurich

Zurich to Berlin by Nightjet sleeper train...  More information 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

 

The 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.

 

Nightjet couchette car...

Option 4, Venice to Berlin by daytime trains with overnight stop in Munich - same as option 1 but with an overnight stop...

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Venice to Munich from €39.90...

Option 1, Venice to Munich by daytime trains - The scenic option!

The restaurant car on a EuroCity from Venice to Munich, at Verona.  You don't need to book a table, just go along and sit down.  Dining on the move as the scenery glides by is one of the pleasures of trains like this.  More photos & information about these EuroCity trains.

Austrian second class seats   Austrian first class seats

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

 

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

Austrian restaurant car   Meal in an Austrian restaurant car on a Munich-Verona train

The elegant restaurant car.  See larger photo.

Lunch with wine on board...

Hilltop fortresses seen from the Brenner Pass train

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

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

Vineyards, mountains and castles south of Brenner as the train heads from Verona to Innsbruck...

Mountains on the Brenner route...

Option 2, Venice to Munich by Nightjet sleeper train - The time-effective option!

The Nightjet train from Vienna to Venice, arrived at Venice Santa Lucia

Venice to Munich by Nightjet...  Above, the Venice-Munich Nightjet at Venice Santa Lucia.

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 photo Video 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 sleeper train

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Nightjet couchette car...

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Venice to Frankfurt, Cologne, Dusseldorf, Hamburg & Germany...

Option 1, Venice to Frankfurt, Cologne, Dusseldorf or Hamburg in a day via the scenic Brenner Pass - a scenic daytime option...

The restaurant car on a EuroCity to Munich, seen at Verona.  You don't need to book a table, just go along and sit down.  Dining on the move as the scenery glides by is one of the pleasures of trains like this.  More photos & information about these EuroCity trains.

Austrian second class seats   Austrian first class seats

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

 

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

Austrian restaurant car   Meal in an Austrian restaurant car on a Munich-Verona train

The elegant restaurant car.  See larger photo.

Lunch with wine on board...

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

Vineyards, mountains and castles south of Brenner as the train heads from Verona to Innsbruck...

Mountains on the Brenner route...  See the Brenner Pass scenery video here

Option 2, Venice to Frankfurt, Cologne, Dusseldorf or Hamburg in a day via Switzerland - another scenic daytime option...

ETR610 EuroCity train at Frankfurt Hbf

The Milan-Frankfurt train at Frankfurt Hbf.  There's a restaurant car, power sockets at all seats & free WiFi.  Photo courtesy of @Nordkommission.

Frecciargento train 2nd class seats   Frecciargento train 1st class seats

2nd class on a Trenitalia ETR610...

 

1st class on a Trenitalia ETR610.

Lake Maggiore, seen from a Milan to Basel train

Lake Maggiore, seen from the train...

Option 3, Venice to Frankfurt, Cologne, Dόsseldorf or Hamburg by EuroCity train to Innsbruck then Nightjet sleeper train - scenic & time-effective...

Step 1, Venice to Innsbruck by Austrian EuroCity train.  This is the restaurant car on a EuroCity at Verona.  You don't need to book a table, just go along and sit down.  Dining on the move as the scenery glides by is one of the pleasures of trains like this...

Austrian second class seats   Austrian first class seats

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

 

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

Austrian restaurant car   Meal in an Austrian restaurant car on a Munich-Verona train

The elegant restaurant car.  See larger photo.

Lunch with wine on board...

Mountains on the Brenner route between Verona & Innsbruck...

The Nightjet sleeper at Innsbruck

Step 2, Innsbruck to Cologne, Dόsseldorf or Hmaburg by Nightjet sleeper train Above, the Nightjet train is about to leave Innsbruck.  More information about Nightjet trains.

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 photo Video of deluxe room

 

The 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 couchettes   Couchette car on sleeper train

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Nightjet couchette car...

Option 4, Venice to Munich by Nightjet sleeper train, onwards by daytime ICE train - another time-effective option...

The Nightjet train from Vienna to Venice, arrived at Venice Santa Lucia

Venice to Munich by Nightjet...  Above, the Venice-Munich Nightjet at Venice Santa Lucia.

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 photo Video of deluxe room

 

The 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 sleeper train

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Nightjet couchette car...

Option 4, Venice to anywhere in Germany by daytime trains with overnight stop in Munich - same as option 1 but with an overnight stop...

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Venice to Vienna & Austria from €29.90...

Option 1, Venice to Vienna by railjet train - the scenic daytime option...

A railjet train about to leave Vienna

A Venice-Vienna railjet at Venice Santa LuciaMore photos & information about Venice-Vienna railjets.

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

Railjet first class, with black leather seats...

 

Business class. About.

 

Restaurant...

Railjet train at Vienna Hbf   Railjet train standard class

A railjet at the impressive modern Vienna Hbf.

 

Economy class...

The railjet travels over the famous Semmering Railway, opened in 1854 and now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  See the Vienna to Venice by train page for more information, photos & video.

Option 2, Venice to Vienna by Nightjet sleeper train - the time-effective option...

The Nightjet sleeper at Vienna

A comfortline sleeping-car on a Nightjet sleeper train at Vienna Hbf.  More information 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 photo Video 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 couchettes   Couchette car on sleeper train

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Nightjet couchette car...

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Venice to Salzburg from €21.90...

Option 1, Venice to Salzburg via the scenic Tauern route - the daytime option, fastest route...

A railjet train about to leave Vienna

A Venice-Villach (-Vienna) railjet at Venice Santa LuciaMore photos & information about railjets.

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

Railjet first class, with black leather seats...

 

Business classAbout.

 

The restaurant...

Railjet train at Vienna Hbf   Railjet train standard class

A railjet at Vienna Hbf.

 

Economy class...

Scenery in the Austrian Alps between Munich & Ljubljana

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

Option 2, Venice to Salzburg via Innsbruck scenic Brenner route - the daytime option, alternative route...

Option 3, Venice to Salzburg by Nightjet sleeper train - the time-effective option...

The Nightjet train from Vienna to Venice, arrived at Venice Santa Lucia

Venice to Linz or Vienna by Nightjet...  Above, the Nightjet at Venice Santa Lucia.

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 photo Video of deluxe room

 

The 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 sleeper train

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Nightjet couchette car...

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Venice to Innsbruck from €19.90...

Option 1, by direct train - the best option, if the afternoon departure suits you...

Option 2, other departures with a change in Verona - if you want a morning departure...

The restaurant car on a EuroCity to Munich, seen at Verona.  You don't need to book a table, just go along and sit down.  Dining on the move as the scenery glides by is one of the pleasures of trains like this.  More photos & information about these EuroCity trains.

Austrian second class seats   Austrian first class seats

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

 

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

Austrian restaurant car   Meal in an Austrian restaurant car on a Munich-Verona train

The elegant restaurant car.  See larger photo.

Lunch with wine on board...

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

Vineyards, mountains and castles south of Brenner as the train heads from Verona to Innsbruck...

Mountains on the Brenner route...  See the Brenner Pass scenery video here.

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Venice to Copenhagen, Gothenburg, Stockholm & Scandinavia...

Option 1, Venice to Copenhagen & Stockholm using the Zurich-Hamburg sleeper - the most time-effective option...

  • Step 1, travel from Venice to Milan by Frecciarossa, leaving Venice Santa Lucia at 11:48 and arriving Milan Centrale at 14:15.

    The Frecciarossa has a cafe-bar, power sockets at all seats & free WiFi.

    Fares start at €19.90 in 2nd class or €29.90 in 1st class.  Fares vary like air fares, book ahead for the cheapest prices.

    Book this train at www.thetrainline.com (easy to use, in €, £ or $, overseas credit cards no problem, small booking fee) or www.trenitalia.com (in €, requires Italian language place names, see advice on using it).  It's ticketless, you just quote your booking reference on board.

  • Step 2, travel from Milan to Zurich by EuroCity train, leaving Milan Centrale at 15:10 and arriving Zurich HB at 18:27.

    The EuroCity train has a restaurant car, power sockets at all seats & free WiFi.  It's a lovely run through the Alps, past Italian and Swiss lakes and passing through the world's longest railway tunnel, the Gotthard Base Tunnel.

    Have dinner in Zurich, I can recommend the steak-frites and a beer at the Brasserie Federal on the main concourse at Zurich HB.

    Fares start at €29 in 2nd class or €49 in 1st class.  Fares vary like air fares, book ahead for the cheapest prices.

    Book this train at www.thetrainline.com (easy to use, in €, £ or $, overseas credit cards no problem, small booking fee) or www.trenitalia.com (in €, requires Italian language place names, see advice on using it).  Booking opens up to 90 days ahead.  It's ticketless, you just quote your booking reference on board.

  • Step 3, travel from Zurich to Hamburg by Nightjet sleeper train, leaving Zurich HB at 19:59 and arriving Hamburg Hbf at 07:53.

    This comfortable Austrian Nightjet train has two air-conditioned double-deck sleeping-cars (1 & 2 bed compartments with washbasin, 1 & 2 bed deluxe compartments with shower & toilet, plus a few 3-berth compartments with washbasin), couchette cars with 4 & 6 berth compartments & ordinary seats.  The sleeper & couchette fares include a light breakfast with tea or coffee in the morning, see the Nightjet information page.

    Fares start at €49.90 in 6-berth couchettes, €59.90 in 4-berth couchettes, €69.90 in a 3-bed sleeper, €89.90 in a 2-bed sleeper or €139.90 in a single-bed sleeper, all per person per berth.

    Book this train at www.thetrainline.com (easy to use, in €, £ or $, overseas credit cards no problem, small booking fee) or at the Austrian Railways website www.oebb.at (in €, more fiddly, same prices).  Booking opens up to 6 months ahead and you print your own ticket.

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

  • Step 5, travel from Copenhagen to Sweden...

    For Stockholm, travel from Copenhagen to Stockholm by X2000 train, leaving Copenhagen at 14:19 and arriving Stockholm at 19:36.  You should book from Hamburg to Stockholm as one transaction from €56.90 at www.bahn.de and print your own ticket or show it on your laptop or smartphone.

    For Malmo or Gothenburg, Φresund Link trains run hourly from Copenhagen to Gothenburg in 3h53 and every half hour or better from Copenhagen to Malmo in 39 minutes.  You should book from Hamburg to Malmo or Gothenburg (= Goteborg Central) as one transaction from €56.90 at www.bahn.de and print your own ticket or show it on your laptop or smartphone.

Giruno train

Milan to Zurich by EuroCity train...  Photos courtesy of Andreas Wiedenhof.

1st class on Giruno   Bar counter in the restaurant car

Giruno, 1st class.  Larger photo.

 

Cafe-bar counter.  Larger photo

Lake Lugano, seen from a Milan to Zurich train

Lake Lugano, seen from a Milan to Zurich train on the Gotthard route.

Double-deck sleeping-car on a Nightjet at Zurich

Zurich to Hamburg by Nightjet...  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

Nightjet couchette car...

 

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

Hamburg-Copenhagen train at Hamburg Hbf

Hamburg to Copenhagen by Intercity train.  This is a Hamburg to 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.

Option 2, Venice to Copenhagen using the Innsbruck-Hamburg Nightjet sleeper train...

Step 1, Venice to Innsbruck by Austrian EuroCity train.  This is the restaurant car on a EuroCity at Verona.  You don't need to book a table, just go along and sit down.  Dining on the move as the scenery glides by is one of the pleasures of trains like this...

Austrian second class seats   Austrian first class seats

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

 

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

Austrian restaurant car   Meal in an Austrian restaurant car on a Munich-Verona train

The elegant restaurant car.  See larger photo.

Lunch with wine on board...

Mountains on the Brenner route between Verona & Innsbruck...

The Nightjet sleeper at Innsbruck

Step 2, Innsbruck to Hamburg by Nightjet sleeper train Above, a Comfortline sleeping-car on the Nightjet train about to leave Innsbruck.  More information about Nightjet trains.

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 photo Video of deluxe room

 

The 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 couchettes   Couchette car on sleeper train

6-berth couchettes...

 

4-berth couchettes...

 

Couchette car on the Nightjet train...

Hamburg-Copenhagen train at Hamburg Hbf

Step 3, Hamburg to Copenhagen by Intercity train.  This is a Hamburg to 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.

Option 3, Venice to Copenhagen using the Venice-Munich sleeper - also a time-effective option...

Option 4, Venice to Copenhagen by daytime trains with an overnight stop in Munich...

Option 5, Venice to Copenhagen, Gothenburg & Stockholm by daytime trains with an overnight stop in Hamburg...

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Venice to Oslo & Norway...

Option 1, by train all the way...

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

Step 1, Venice to Innsbruck by Austrian EuroCity train.  This is the restaurant car on a EuroCity at Verona.  You don't need to book a table, just go along and sit down.  Dining on the move as the scenery glides by is one of the pleasures of trains like this...

Austrian second class seats   Austrian first class seats

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

 

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

Austrian restaurant car   Meal in an Austrian restaurant car on a Munich-Verona train

The elegant restaurant car.  See larger photo.

Lunch with wine on board...

Mountains on the Brenner route between Verona & Innsbruck...

The Nightjet sleeper at Innsbruck

Step 2, Innsbruck to Hamburg by Nightjet sleeper train and transfer to Kiel by regional train.  Above, the Nightjet train about to leave Innsbruck.  More information 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 photo Video 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 couchettes   Couchette car on sleeper train

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Nightjet couchette car...

Germany to Oslo Color Line ferry at Kiel

Step 3, sail from Kiel to Oslo with Color Line...  This photo is taken from the exit of Kiel station, so you can see how close the ferry is.  It's a 5-6 minute walk across the harbour, with a street lift up to a connecting walkway which takes you to the ferry terminal. If you have reserved one of what Color Line call their "5 star suites", check in at the desk rather than the machines and you'll be directed to a special lounge to wait with free tea, coffee, juice, snacks & WiFi.  You'll also have priority boarding of the ship.  Photos courtesy of Andrew Leo.

Boarding the ferry in Kiel

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

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

A 5 Star Suite on the ferry...

 

More cruise liner than ferry!  The restaurant.

View from Color Line ferry to Oslo

Wake up to this....

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Venice 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...

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Venice to Prague, Cesky Krumlov & the Czech Republic...

Option 1, Venice to Prague via the Venice-Vienna sleeper - comfortable, safe & time-effective with a chance to see Vienna on the way...

The Nightjet sleeper at Vienna

Step 1, Venice to Vienna by Nightjet sleeper train.  This is a comfortline sleeping-car on a Nightjet sleeper train arrived at Vienna Hbf.  More information about Nightjet trains.

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 photo Video of deluxe room

 

The 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 couchettes   Couchette car on sleeper train

6-berth couchettes...

 

4-berth couchettes...

 

Couchette car on the Nightjet train...

Czech Railjet train to Vienna at Prague Hlavni station

Step 2, Vienna to Prague by smart modern railjet train, with economy, first & business class, restaurant car, free WiFi and draught beer on tap...

Restaurant car   Economy (2nd class) seating

Restaurant car...  Courtesy David Malone

 

Economy (2nd) class...  Courtesy Cortney Lollar

Option 2, Venice to Prague in a single day from €48, comfy, scenic...

A railjet train about to leave Vienna

A Venice-Vienna railjet, at Venice Santa Lucia More photos & info about Venice-Vienna railjets.

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

Railjet first class, with black leather seats...

 

Business classAbout.

 

The restaurant...

Railjet train at Vienna Hbf   Railjet train standard class

A railjet at the impressive modern Vienna Hbf.

 

Economy class...

The railjet travels over the famous Semmering Railway, opened in 1854 and now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  See the Vienna to Venice by train page for more information, photos & video.

Option 3, Venice to Prague by day trains with overnight stop in Vienna - same as option 3 but an overnight stop breaks up the journey nicely...

Option 4, Venice to Prague by day trains with overnight stop in Munich - from €37.90, the cheapest option...

The restaurant car on a EuroCity to Munich, seen at Verona.  You don't need to book a table, just go along and sit down.  Dining on the move as the scenery glides by is one of the pleasures of trains like this.  More photos & information about these EuroCity trains.

Austrian second class seats   Austrian first class seats

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

 

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

Austrian restaurant car   Meal in an Austrian restaurant car on a Munich-Verona train

The elegant restaurant car.  Larger photo.

Lunch with wine on board...

Hilltop fortresses seen from the Brenner Pass train

Watch out for hilltop fortresses...

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

Vineyards, mountains and castles south of Brenner as the train heads from Verona to Innsbruck...

Mountains on the Brenner route...  See the Brenner Pass scenery video here...

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Venice to Bratislava from €42...

Option 1, by daytime train - the scenic option...

Option 2, by sleeper train - the time-effective option...

The Nightjet sleeper at Vienna

Step 1, Venice to Vienna by Nightjet sleeper train.  This is a comfortline sleeping-car on a Nightjet sleeper train arrived at Vienna Hbf.  More information about Nightjet trains.

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 photo Video of deluxe room

 

The 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 couchettes   Couchette car on sleeper train

6-berth couchettes...

 

4-berth couchettes...

 

Couchette car on the Nightjet train...

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

Step 2, Vienna to Bratislava by hourly regional express train, seen about to leave Vienna Hbf.  Behind the locomotive is a smart Slovakian air-conditioned intercity coach, whilst the rest of the train consists of more basic non-air-con Austrian City Shuttle carriages, with interiors as shown in the photo above right.  Find a seat in the more comfortable Slovakian car if you can!  More about these trains.

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Venice to Budapest from €68...

Option 1, Venice to Budapest using the Venice-Vienna Nightjet sleeper train - a safe, comfortable & time-effective option...

The Nightjet sleeper at Vienna

Step 1, Venice to Vienna by Nightjet sleeper train.  This is a comfortline sleeping-car on a Nightjet sleeper train arrived at Vienna Hbf.  More information about Nightjet trains.

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 photo Video 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 couchettes   Couchette car on sleeper train

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Nightjet couchette car...

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

Step 2, Vienna to Budapest by railjet, seen arrived on platform 9 at Budapest KeletiMore information about railjets.

Business class on the Vienna to Venice train   Business class on the Vienna to Venice train

Economy (2nd) class...  Larger photo.

 

First class...  Larger photo.

Option 2, Venice to Budapest in a single day from €49, comfy, scenic...

A railjet train about to leave Vienna

A Venice-Vienna railjet, at Venice Santa LuciaMore information about Venice-Vienna railjets.

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

Railjet first class, with black leather seats...

 

Business classAbout.

 

The restaurant...

Railjet train at Vienna Hbf   Railjet train standard class

A railjet at the impressive modern Vienna Hbf.

 

Economy class...

The railjet travels over the famous Semmering Railway, opened in 1854 and now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  See the Vienna to Venice by train page for more information, photos & video.

Option 3, Venice to Budapest by day trains with overnight stop in Vienna - same as option 2 but an overnight stop breaks up the journey nicely...

Option 4, via Ljubljana - the cheapest option at short notice, with a chance to see Trieste & Ljubljana on the way...

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Venice to Bucharest, Brasov & Romania...

Option 1, by railjet to Vienna and Dacia Express sleeper train to Sighisoara, Brasov & Bucharest...

A railjet train about to leave Vienna

Step 1, Venice to Vienna by railjet, seen here at Venice Santa LuciaMore information about Venice-Vienna railjets.

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

Railjet first class, with black leather seats...

 

Business classAbout.

 

Restaurant...

Railjet train at Vienna Hbf   Railjet train standard class

A railjet at the impressive modern Vienna Hbf.

 

Economy class...

The railjet travels over the famous Semmering Railway, opened in 1854 and now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  See the Vienna to Venice by train page for more information, photos & video.

Dacia Express sleeping-car

Step 2, Vienna to Romania by Dacia Express sleeper train...  The Dacia Express has one or at peak times two air-conditioned Romanian sleeping-cars, seen here at Bucharest.  You can check the train formation at www.vagonweb.cz Courtesy of @PaliparanDotCom

Washbasin   Dacia Express sleeper compartment   Romanian couchette car from Vienna to Bucharest

Sleepers:  Each compartment can be sold as a single, double (as here) or triple.  Most compartments have a washbasin as shown, two compartments have a shower & toilet.  Beds fold away to form a private sitting room for day use.  Larger photo.

 

Couchettes:  4 & 6-berth, bedding is provided.  Larger photo.

Dacia Express couchette car

The Dacia Express has one couchette car, seen here at Bucharest.  Courtesy of @PaliparanDotCom.

Scenery in Transylvania

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

Dacia Express bar-bistro car

The Dacia Express en route to Bucharest...  Photo courtesy of @PaliparanDotCom.

  Couchette car on the Ister EuroNight train from Budapest to Bucharest

Enjoy lunch and a beer in the bar car, as a bar-bistro is attached to the Dacia Express in Romania between Simeria & Bucharest.  Photos courtesy of @PaliparanDotCom & @_DiningCar.

Dacia Express Carpathian mountains

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

Option 2, by sleeper to Vienna, day train to Budapest & sleeper to Brasov & Bucharest - longer, but might work better, is sometimes cheaper, and gives you an afternoon in Budapest.

  • Step 2, take the overnight sleeper train Ister leaving Budapest Keleti at 19:10 and arriving Brasov at 09:54 & Bucharest Nord at 12:33 next day. 

    This comfortable train 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, see the photos on the London to Romania page.

    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.

    Book at the Romanian Railways website bileteinternationale.cfrcalatori.ro.  Click EN top right for English.  Booking opens 60 days ahead.  For Bucharest type Bucuresti.  It can book seats, couchettes or sleepers.  For Hungary to Romania journeys you print your own ticket.

    You can also normally 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 smartphone.  However, since MAV revamped its website in 2020, it can't book couchettes or sleepers, only seats.  Though this should be fixed at some point.

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Venice to Ljubljana & Slovenia, Zagreb...

Option 1, by the direct route through Trieste...

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.

Scenery between Trieste and Ljubljana

Scenery in Slovenia, seen from the train from Trieste to Ljubljana...

Option 2, with overnight stop in Austria - a useful alternative...

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Venice to Dubrovnik & Split...

Option 1, by train via Zagreb - the overland option...

  • Step 1, travel overland from Venice to Zagreb by train as shown above.

  • Step 2, take a train from Zagreb to Split (daytime or sleeper) then a bus Split to Dubrovnik (4 hours, lots of buses). 

Option 2, it may be more time-effective to take a train to Ancona or Bari, then a comfortable overnight ferry to Croatia.

Ancona to Split ferries in Split Harbour   Deluxe cabin onm Ancona to Split ferry

Blue Line & Jadrolinija ferries in Split Harbour...  Above right, a deluxe cabin on the Blue Line ferry, which comes complete with an en suite jacuzzi...  Courtesy of Andrew Leo.

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Venice to Belgrade & Sofia...

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Venice to Bar, Budva, Kotor & Montenegro...
Montenegro Lines ferry from Bar to Bari

The Montenegro Lines ferry to Bari at Bar ferry terminal...

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Venice to Warsaw, Krakow & Poland...

Option 1, Venice to Vienna by Nightjet sleeper then Vienna to Poland by daytime train...

The Nightjet train from Vienna to Venice, arrived at Venice Santa Lucia

Step 1, Venice to Vienna by Nightjet sleeper train...  Above, the Nightjet at Venice Santa Lucia.

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 photo Video of deluxe room

 

The 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 sleeper train

6-berth couchettes.

 

4-berth couchettes.

 

Nightjet couchette car...

Morning EuroCity train from Vienna to Warsaw

Step 2, Vienna to Warsaw by EuroCity train...  This is a EuroCity train from Vienna to Warsaw at Vienna Hbf.  On these PKP Polish Railways cars, the green stripe above the windows indicates 2nd class.  Yellow indicates first class.  Red indicates the restaurant car.  Courtesy of Jennifer Delaney.

2nd class car on the Berlin to Warsaw train   2nd class car on the Berlin to Warsaw train

Most 2nd class cars have compartments like this with side corridor & 6-seat compartments, although one or two cars may have open-plan saloons.  All 1st class seats are in 6-seat compartments on these trains.  Click images for larger photos.

Polish restaurant car

Restaurant car...

Option 2, Venice to Vienna by daytime train then Vienna to Krakow & Warsaw by sleeper.  Given the scenery between Venice & Vienna, perhaps the better option!

A railjet train about to leave Vienna

Step 1, Venice to Vienna by railjet, seen here at Venice Santa LuciaMore information about Venice-Vienna railjets.

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

Railjet first class, with black leather seats...

 

Business classAbout.

 

The restaurant...

Railjet train at Vienna Hbf   Railjet train standard class

A railjet at the impressive modern Vienna Hbf.

 

Economy class...

The railjet travels over the famous Semmering Railway, opened in 1854 and now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  See the Vienna to Venice by train page for more information, photos & video.

Modern Polish sleeping-car

Step 2, Vienna to Krakow & Warsaw by sleeper train...  This is the modern Polish sleeping-car on the Vienna-Krakow-Warsaw EuroNight train Chopin Courtesy of WieselFahrer...

Modern Polish sleeper in day mode   Modern Polish sleeper in day mode   A deluxe sleeper on the Amsterdam to Warsaw train   Deluxe sleepers have a private shower & toilet

Standard sleeper in evening/morning mode with seats folded out.

 

Standard sleeper set up as a 3-berth.  It can also be sold as a single or double.

 

Deluxe sleeper, set up as a 2-berth, showing TV & wardrobe.

 

Deluxe sleeper:  En suite shower & toilet...

Option 3, Venice to Vienna, overnight stop, Vienna to Krakow or Warsaw - if you prefer daytime trains with a hotel stop to sleepers...

A railjet train about to leave Vienna

Day 1, Venice to Vienna by railjet, seen here at Venice Santa LuciaMore information about Venice-Vienna railjets.

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

Railjet first class, with black leather seats...

 

Business classAbout.

 

The restaurant...

Railjet train at Vienna Hbf   Railjet train standard class

A railjet at the impressive modern Vienna Hbf.

 

Economy class...

The railjet travels over the famous Semmering Railway, opened in 1854 and now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  See the Vienna to Venice by train page for more information, photos & video.

Krakow to Vienna train

Day 2, Vienna to Krakow by EuroCity train, seen here at Krakow GlownyCourtesy of DiscoverByRail.com.

Austrian restaurant car   Meal in an Austrian restaurant car on a Munich-Verona train

Austrian restaurant car.  See larger photo.

Lunch with wine on board...

2nd class seats in an open-plan car   2nd class seats in 6-seat compartments

2nd class seats in an open-plan saloon.  Some of the Austrian Vienna-Krakow cars are like this.  See larger photo.

 

2nd class seats in a compartment.  Other Vienna-Krakow cars are like this. See larger photo.

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Venice to Lviv, Kiev & Moscow...
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.

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Venice to Athens & Greece...

Option 1, by direct ferry from Venice to Greece...

Option 2, by ferry from Bari...

  • Day 1, sail from Bari to Patras with Superfast Ferries.  The ferry normally sails at 19:30 daily except Sundays, arriving Patras at 13:00 the next day (day 3).  On Sundays the ship sails at 13:30, too early to make connections from Venice.

    Check ferry times, dates, prices & buy tickets using the Direct Ferries website or at www.superfast.com or www.ferriesingreece.com

    The ship is modern and comfortable, with restaurants, bars, lounges and sun decks.  You can book a deck place (a nice cheap option in summer if you have your own sleeping bag) or a reclining seat or a berth in various types of cabin, including luxury cabins with private shower & toilet.  Strolling the decks in the morning sun as the ship cruises past the islands of Cephalonia and Ithaca is the nicest part of the trip, and it's a wonderful way to arrive in Greece.

    In Patras, the ferry arrives at the new South ferry terminal a few km from the town centre.  Bus number 18 links the port with the town bus station every hour on the hour, fare €1.20 or you can hop in a taxi for around €7, journey time 15-20 minutes.

  • Day 2, from Patras it's a around 3 hours to Athens by bus/train combo.  There's a bus/train combined timetable from Patras to Athens on www.trainose.gr, though it takes a bit of finding.  Buy the bus ticket when you reach Patras, it costs around €18.

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!

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Venice to Istanbul & Turkey...

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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 tailor-make a train trip around Europe to your own specification.  Just tell them what you want and they'll advise you on the best trains, routes & hotels.  They get good reports and a lot of repeat business!  They now have offices in the UK, North America and Australia.

UK 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.


bullet pointHotels in Venice

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.


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