My wife and I and another couple want to travel by train to Venice then on to Istanbul, flying back into Manchester. The concept will be make the journey after the college summer time visit to 2014. We’d love to spend a short time at interesting towns on the way (perhaps Paris and some other place), after that have 3 days in Venice and three or four in Istanbul. We don’t have the budget to complete the Orient Express — we might would like to make use of our resources to stay in comfortable resort hotels and consume really. Have you any idea of a business which could assist to organize our travel? We’d in addition welcome your guidance about paths, locations to remain and locations to see.
Anthony Lambert, Rail specialist, replies:
Paris is a good place to break your way due to the fact Eurostar terminates indeed there. The extra city, i would suggest Berne in Switzerland, which will be achieved by direct TGV from Paris. Its enchanting old city is a World history website and there are numerous great museums and galleries. It is possible to attain the city’s mountain, the Gurten, by the S3 train or tram 9 and a funicular for strolls through woods and areas to your noise of cowbells. The vaulted Kornhauskeller is a spectacular setting where to test Bernese meals.
At this time, making after morning meal, there's an onward solution to Brig for a cross-platform switch to an immediate train with restaurant car to Venice, showing up after meal. Your trouble may be the last stage to Istanbul, as there are not any longer trains across the border into Slovenia, and so the best path would-be circuitous, via Vienna, Budapest and Bucharest. If time is tight, you may think of flying that knee regarding the trip.
In terms of tour providers are concerned, i would recommend Railbookers (020 3327 0800; railbookers.com), which tailor-makes rail-based vacations after discussion of your needs and expectations and can make all of the train and hotel bookings for you personally. Bookings for many european trains open 3 months before deviation; booking early generally saves cash.