Rovos Rail The Ultimate Luxury Trek, Cape Town-Dar es Salaam

15-day Escorted Tour
Africa
Luxury

If you do just one high-end rail trip in your life, make it this one.

Rovos Rail runs one of the world’s ultimate luxury rail trips between Cape Town and Dar es Salaam several times annually. The experience is unforgettable.

This 15-day private rail tour aboard The Pride of Africa stretches across South Africa and Botswana, touches Zimbabwe at Victoria Falls, and crosses Zambia to Tanzania.

From Kimberley’s diamonds to a deluxe South Africa game lodge, from the very British Victoria Falls Hotel to Africa’s Great Rift Valley, every day is unique.

One highlight: a two-night stay at the five-star Tau Game Lodge with many game drives.

Combine with the Blue Train, another South African luxury train, for a unique view of the African subcontinent’s diverse, spectacular scenery.

Latest News: Click here to enjoy IRT’s “just-back-from-Africa” report and photos about safaris that mesh perfectly with a Rovos Rail cruise.

Latest Photos: Click here to see a photo essay of our Cape Town – Dar es Salaam Rovos Rail adventure.

Inside Track: We dined with Rovos Rail’s Alicia Taljaard recently. Her favorite trip? It’s not what you might think. Click here.

 

 

Russia on the Trans-Siberian Express: Vladivostok-Moscow

15-day Escorted Tour
Europe
Luxury

The Trans-Siberian Express is THE big train ride—an epic 15-day journey spanning two continents and seven time zones. Travel across the world’s most famous railway on board the private Golden Eagle Trans-Siberian Express.

You’ll spend most days touring cities along the route as well as enjoy three, relaxing all-day train rides. You’ll spend your nights on the train in private train compartments (except on the first and last nights of the tour, when you’ll be in top hotels). Highlights include viewing the early-morning mist rising over Lake Baikal, as you ride outside on the engine, followed by a picnic lunch on a secluded beach.

There’s no better way to see the vastness of Siberia. One of IRT members’ favorite journeys, it’s a trip that will change your life.

Two Imperial Suites will continue to be available on all Golden Eagle departures. These new compartments are the most spacious – 120 square feet – offered on the train and feature a fixed king-sized bed, a dedicated dressing table and lounge area, and more. For details about this and other upgrades, click here.

Russia on the Trans-Siberian Express: Moscow-Vladivostok

15-day Escorted Tour
Europe
Luxury

The Trans-Siberian Express is THE big train ride—an epic 15-day journey spanning two continents and seven time zones. Travel across the world’s most famous railway on board the private Golden Eagle Trans-Siberian Express.

You’ll spend most days touring cities along the route as well as enjoy three, relaxing all-day train rides. You’ll spend your nights on the train in private train compartments (except on the first and last nights of the tour, when you’ll be in top hotels). Highlights include viewing the early-morning mist rising over Lake Baikal, as you ride outside on the engine, followed by a picnic lunch on a secluded beach.

There’s no better way to see the vastness of Siberia. One of IRT members’ favorite journeys, it’s a trip that will change your life.

Two Imperial Suites will continue to be available on all Golden Eagle departures. These new compartments are the most spacious – 120 square feet – offered on the train and feature a fixed king-sized bed, a dedicated dressing table and lounge area, and more. For details about this and other upgrades, click here.

Royal Scotsman Grand Tour England, Scotland & Wales

8-day Escorted Tour
Europe
Luxury

There’s no finer way to see the splendid British countryside than by traveling aboard one of the world’s most luxurious trains.

The Royal Scotsman, making a rare cross-border foray, will be your home for a 7-night exclusive, memorable journey around Scotland, Wales and England—exploring the very best of Great Britain.

IRT Exclusvie: Click here to see our video of Society President Eleanor Hardy’s trip on the Belmond Royal Scotsman.

This new tour has proven to be very popular, book early to avoid disappointment! Only one annual departure.

Belmond Royal Scotsman Classic Whisky Journey

5-day Escorted Tour
Europe
Luxury

As the world’s foremost malt whisky club, the Scotch Malt Whisky Society — specialists in single cask, single malt whiskies — is the perfect partner for this special Classic Whisky Journey through Scotland. 
Guests will enjoy the company of a Society Whisky Ambassador on board throughout the journey, along with the Society’s exclusive and rare malts for sampling and discussion.

IRT Exclusvie: Click here to see our video of Society President Eleanor Hardy’s trip on the Belmond Royal Scotsman.

Istanbul-Venice Annual Journey

6 days
Europe
Luxury

This celebrated Venice Simplon-Orient-Express tour mirrors the Paris-Istanbul run, save its end point: alluring Venice. Travel through six countries as you enjoy luxury-class food, wine, service, off-train tours and romantic, Orient-Express atmosphere.

After departing Istanbul, travel through Turkey and Bulgaria, arriving next day in Bucharest for a one-night stay in a 5-star hotel. Continue your journey into Budapest, where you overnight, again in a grand hotel.

The next day, drink in the scenery, then stop in Vienna for an afternoon tour. Then, re-board the Orient-Express for an elegant farewell dinner, before your overnight journey through Austria and into Venice, where your tour ends.

Special Report: Istanbul-Venice is practically a mirror image of the Orient-Express’ Paris-Istanbul itinerary. Click here for travel notes from the Society’s celebratory 20th anniversary Paris-Istanbul Orient-Express trip, written by Owen Hardy, Society founder, for the Gentleman’s Gazette.

Romantic Italian Holiday

6 days
Europe
Luxury

Try this for Romance: two nights in Florence at the Villa San Michele, a former monastery turned five-star hotel; two nights in Venice at the Cipriani, iconic waterside pleasure palace overlooking the Grand Canal; two days and a night on the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express, capped off by afternoon tea on the British Pullman into London.

Perfect for honeymoons, anniversary celebrations, or any other occasion demanding over-the-top luxury and romance. Package includes hotels, breakfast daily, railway station/airport/hotel transfers, tours,

Florence-Venice high-speed rail transfer, more. Extend your celebration: add London’s romantic Milestone Hotel for a two-night stay and enjoy complimentary afternoon tea for two.

Special Report: Click here for travel notes by Society owners Owen & Eleanor Hardy, who celebrated their 30th wedding anniversary on the Orient-Express Venice-Paris-London.

Paris-Istanbul Annual Journey

6-day Escorted Tour
Europe
Luxury

This once-a-year, week-long luxury rail voyage recreates the original Orient-Express route: Paris-Istanbul. Travel through seven countries in elegant style. Food, wine, service, off-train tours, atmosphere: everything is over-the-top.

Board in Paris for your journey through France, Switzerland and Austria towards Budapest. Overnight at a five-star Budapest hotel, then continue through Hungary and into Romania. Enjoy the next day and night in Bucharest at yet another grand hotel.

The next day, stop in Bulgaria before enjoying your last night and day on board as the Orient-Express train arrives in Istanbul.

Special Report: Click here for travel notes from the Society’s celebratory 20th anniversary Paris-Istanbul Orient-Express trip, written by Owen Hardy, Society founder, for the Gentleman’s Gazette.

The Silk Road: Beijing to Moscow by Private Train

21-day Escorted Tour
Asia,Europe
Luxury

The Silk Road rail adventure is one of the most exotic, storied, and best-loved by Society of IRT members, taking travelers to places few Westerners have ventured. It’s no wonder IRT co-owners Owen & Eleanor Hardy chose this epic adventure to celebrate IRT’s 30th anniversary in 2013!

This two-train tour follows in the footsteps of Marco Polo along one of the world’s oldest and most historic trade routes. The luxurious Golden Eagle and the first-class Shangri-La Express train will transport you through five countries – and back in time.

This great caravan road linking the kings of Europe with the luxuries of Asia—most significantly, its silks and spices—is preserved to a remarkable degree. Tour the Gobi Desert on camel and see the Terracotta Warriors of Xian. Marvel at the architecture and artistry on display in the mosques and buildings of Central Asia’s most important medieval cities. Wander through local markets offering Uzbek textiles and ceramics. Explore the history-rich cities of Beijing and Moscow. And do it all from the comfort of your “hotel-on-wheels!”

This is truly a “trip of a lifetime.” Our Silk Road by rail journey also runs in the opposite direction. For the Moscow-Beijing itinerary, please click here.

Belmond Grand Hibernian: Grand Tour of Ireland

7-Day Escorted Tour
Europe
Luxury

Ancient legends, inspiring natural beauty and vibrant cities—see the highlights of “the Emerald Isle” with a complete journey through both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. Tours from Dublin on the Belmond Grand Hibernian are sure to stay with you for a lifetime.

Let yourself be captivated by Ireland’s charms as you journey in peerless luxury. Anticipate your journey on the Belmond Grand Hibernian to be accentuated by magical encounters, world-class cuisine and exceptional service.

Golf Option: Alternative golf options are available during the Grand Tour of Ireland, offering play at such world-renowned courses as Cork Golf Club, Killarney Golf & Fishing Club, Lahinch Golf Club and the newly revamped Doonbeg Golf Club.

Important Note: The Society of International Railway Travelers® is sponsoring a special group departure Aug. 29, 2017. Please inquire for details.

Click here to read IRT Owner & CEO Owen Hardy’s blog review of the Belmond Grand Hibernian after taking the Grand Tour with an IRT group charter.

Click here for more information about the Belmond Grand Hibernian itself.

The Silk Road: Moscow to Beijing by Private Train

21-day Escorted Tour
Asia
Luxury

The Silk Road rail adventure is one of the most exotic, storied, and best-loved by Society of IRT members, taking travelers to places few Westerners have ventured. It’s no wonder IRT co-owners Owen & Eleanor Hardy chose this epic adventure to celebrate IRT’s 30th anniversary in 2013!

This two-train tour follows in the footsteps of Marco Polo along one of the world’s oldest and most historic trade routes. The luxurious Golden Eagle and the first-class Shangri-La Express train will transport you through five countries – and back in time.

This great caravan road linking the kings of Europe with the luxuries of Asia—most significantly, its silks and spices—is preserved to a remarkable degree. Tour the Gobi Desert on camel and see the Terracotta Warriors of Xian. Marvel at the architecture and artistry on display in the mosques and buildings of Central Asia’s most important medieval cities. Wander through local markets offering Uzbek textiles and ceramics. Explore the history-rich cities of Beijing and Moscow. And do it all from the comfort of your “hotel-on-wheels!”

This is truly a “trip of a lifetime.” Our Silk Road by rail journey also runs in the opposite direction. For the Beijing-Moscow itinerary, please click here. Note the westbound itinerary is one day shorter than the Moscow-Beijing eastbound itinerary.

New:
The Golden Eagle Trans-Siberian Express will include two Imperial Suites on all departures. These new compartments are the most spacious – 120 square feet – and feature a fixed king-sized bed, a dressing table and lounge area, and more. For details about this and other upgrades, click here.

 

Rovos Rail’s S. African Collage From the Mountains to the Sea

9-day Escorted Tour
Africa
Luxury

The tour many Rovos Rail staff rank number one: a panoramic 2,100-mile, 9-day South African sojourn departing three times annually, with optional activities for golfers.

Travel from Pretoria eastwards to Malelane, south to Swaziland and Durban, west to Bloemfontein, then southwards again through Port Elizabeth, Oudtshoorn and George to Cape Town.

Enjoy game drives in Kruger Park, Mkhaya Reserve and Hluhluwe Game Reserve; spend an evening in Durban and visit Addo Elephant Park as well as an ostrich farm in Oudtshoorn. We’ll make a spectacular rail descent down from the Montagu Pass (2,400 feet) into George, at sea level

From Knysna the train travels along the Indian Ocean on the scenic Garden Route before ending in Cape Town.

Note: Golfers have the option of playing five challenging courses, including Ernie Els’ Oubaai Golf Club.

Latest News: Click here to enjoy IRT’s “just-back-from-Africa” report and photos about safaris that mesh perfectly with a Rovos Rail cruise.

Latest Photos: Click here to see a photo essay of our Cape Town – Dar es Salaam Rovos Rail adventure.

Inside Track: We dined with Rovos Rail’s Alicia Taljaard recently. Her favorite trip? It’s not what you might think. Click here.

Belmond Grand Hibernian: Legends and Loughs

Five-Day Escorted Tour
Europe
Luxury

Experience the ultimate in Irish holidays and uncover the hidden gems of the Emerald Isle aboard the luxurious Belmond Grand Hibernian.

Begin in Dublin and first travel south to Cork. Then, wind your way up the west coast and visit Killarney, Galway and Westport. Highlights include behind the scenes tour of Jameson’s Whiskey distillery, “kissing” the Blarney Stone, the spectacular lakes of Killarney, breath-taking scenery of Connemara National Park, sporting activities at Ashford Castle, and traditional Irish music and lunch in Galway.

Let yourself be taken by the spirit of adventure. Visit thrilling destinations as the train crosses through postcard-perfect scenery. Dine on lovingly prepared cuisine, enriched by the finest regional ingredients, while traditional local entertainment aboard brings each memorable day to a close.

Click here to read IRT Owner & CEO Owen Hardy’s blog review of the Belmond Grand Hibernian after taking the Grand Tour with an IRT group charter.

Danube Express Budapest-Venice Balkan Odyssey

11-Day Escorted Tour
Europe
Luxury

Explore Eastern Europe’s Balkans on the Golden Eagle Danube Express‘ Balkan Odyssey luxury rail journey. This is a region synonymous with history and legend, stunning architecture and colorful people, yet also with war and tragedy. In one glorious sweep, you’ll travel from Budapest, where you’ll spend two nights at the famed Four Seasons Gresham Palace, then through Romania, Bulgaria, Serbia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Croatia, Slovenia, and on into Venice’s Santa Lucia Station.  And you’ll do so in comfort, aboard the Golden Eagle Danube Express.

The Danube Express‘ Balkan Odyssey passes through some of Europe’s most poignant and destructive periods of conflict, complemented by a fascinating insight into the future of modern Europe. The city of Budapest, a remarkable blend of medieval and Baroque style, is our starting point for this remarkable journey. Before boarding our exclusive train, we will take time to discover the absorbing history of the once divided cities of Buda and Pest and explore some of its modern day customs.

Settle in to your private compartments aboard the elegant Golden Eagle Danube Express as your rail voyage meanders through stunningly beautiful countryside and awe-inspiring mountain ranges on an exploration of mythical Transylvania. We then route westwards though the intriguing countries of the former Yugoslavia.  At the end of this remarkable journey, we reach the stunning maritime city of Venice, a unique mix of Gothic and Renaissance palaces perched on the edge of the Italian coast.

Belmond Royal Scotsman Classic Tour

5-day Escorted Tour
Europe
Luxury

From the bagpipes and intimate musical events, to the grand sweep of the moors and the gorges, the Belmond Royal Scotsman’s Classic Tour is a journey straight to the heart of the Scottish Highlands.

Life on the train is relaxed and indulgent, with the freshest, finest local produce served in the dining cars. From Edinburgh, the train follows the east coast up to Keith, then journeys to the picturesque west coast village of Plockton, thence to Inverness and south to Perth.

Two highlights: a private tour and tasting at Glen Ord Distillery and a personal tour of Ballindalloch, with its magnificent castle and gardens. Other activities include clay pigeon shooting or guided walking along Caledonian pine forest trails.

IRT Exclusvie: Click here to see our video of Society President Eleanor Hardy’s trip on the Belmond Royal Scotsman.

El Transcantábrico Gran Lujo: Santiago-San Sebastian Luxury Train

8-day Escorted Tour
Europe
Luxury

Northern Spain’s luxurious El Transcantábrico Gran Lujo, a gem of a train, travels slowly between Santiago and San Sebastian, along northern “Green Spain,” stopping for exceptional meals to explore local cuisine. Fresh ingredients and fine wines enhance the dining experiences—a highlight of this tour. End in San Sebastian, a day-train ride from France, Barcelona or Madrid. The new train has all Deluxe Suites and takes only 28 persons.

Special Offer for 2016 Departures
50% Off first-class RENFE train tickets to and from arrival/departure points to join the El Transcantábrico.  Service fee may apply.

And let us book your hotels pre- and post-train.  We offer a great value on hotel bookings with our Virtuoso partner hotels: the offer includes exclusive and valuable complimentary amenities which add a value of hundreds of dollars to your booking.

Latest News: Click here

Bangkok-Singapore (& vice versa) by Luxury Train

4-day Escorted Tour
Asia
Luxury

Linking Bangkok and Singapore, the Eastern & Oriental Express provides a short but satisfying introduction to four great cultures, as revealed by the glittering Thai temples of Bangkok and Singapore’s exciting mix of Chinese, Indian and Malay architecture and cuisine. The mid-journey visit to the famed bridge over the River Kwai is an added bonus.

Belmond Royal Scotsman Grand North Western Tour

8-day Escorted Tour
Europe
Luxury

With seven nights aboard, this is one of our favorite trips: Enjoy the Belmond Royal Scotsman and Scotland to the full. The Grand North Western tour combines the Classic and Western itineraries for a comprehensive exploration of Scotland. First, travel along the east coast to Keith, then west to the picturesque west coast village of Plockton, before returning to Inverness and then south to Perth.

Enjoy the many highlights along the way, including a personal invitation to visit Ballindalloch, with its magnificent house and gardens. Relax and experience the magnificent West Highland scenery and a private view of Mount Stuart, one of Britain’s most spectacular Victorian gothic houses.

This itinerary also allows plenty of time to relax on board enjoying the train’s wonderful meals, service and other amenities. When you book this combined Classic & Western journey, you save $1,170 per person over booking them separately!

IRT Exclusvie: Click here to see our video of Society President Eleanor Hardy’s trip on the Belmond Royal Scotsman.

The Blue Train: South Africa Luxury Train & Safaris

10-day Independent Tour
Africa
Luxury

We paired the Blue Train with the magical hotels and Botswana safari camps of our partners Belmond. Our journey includes unique experiences, from the Blue Train, to beautiful Cape Town, to unique stays in the bush.

But remember: book early; the camps are small and popular.

Special Value: We extend valuable Virtuoso complimentary and exclusive amenities to our guests at every accommodation in this program. They include but are not limited to dining credits, spa credits and helicopter rides.

And special care is taken from the minute you are met at the airport by your hostess plane-side to the time he or she waves goodbye after seeing you to your international gate.

Deluxe Japan Rail Journey with Kyushu Seven Stars

15-day Escorted Tour
Asia
Luxury

New for 2016: We are thrilled to announce IRT’s inaugural Japanese journey featuring wonderful rail and cultural experiences — and topped off by an adventure on Japan’s first luxury train: the Kyushu Seven Stars! We are honored to say we are the first agency in the Western Hemisphere to charter the train.

Travelers may choose to take the Deluxe Japan Rail Journey with or without the Kyushu Seven Stars extension – although we highly recommend you join us for the entire 15-day trip.

The ten-day escorted main tour will focus on the intersection of modernity and ancient tradition in some of Japan’s most celebrated cities and regions, including Tokyo, the Hakone nature reserve, Kyoto, Hiroshima, and Miyajima.  The extension focuses on beautiful Kyushu and its new luxury rail star, Kyushu Seven Stars.

Latest News: Click here for owner Owen Hardy’s blog about his Japanese adventure on the Kyushu Seven Stars. Spoiler alert: He loved it!

Japan’s Kyushu by Luxury Rail

9-day Escorted Tour
Asia
Luxury

New this year: This tour focuses on two of Japan’s newest, most over-the-top tourist trains: the luxurious Cruise Train Seven Stars in Kyushu and its “little sister,” the sumptuous Sweet Train.

Their home is Japan’s southern-most island, Kyushu, famous for its natural beauty, hot springs and delectable food. There’s no better way to experience Kyushu’s beauty than via luxury rail.

The following itinerary is based on our sold-out group tour. Secure your spot with a nonrefundable deposit for one of the dates listed below. Or contact us to get on our “first notification” list for 2017 dates.

Note that this itinerary is subject to change, depending on the requirements of JR Kyushu. Please contact us to confirm a specific itinerary.

Latest News: Click here for owner Owen Hardy’s blog about his Japan adventure on the Seven Stars. Click here for his report on the remarkable Sweet Train. Spoiler alert: He loved them both!

Danube Express Venice-Istanbul Balkan Explorer

12-Day Escorted Tour
Europe
Luxury

Discover the fascinating history, vibrant culture and medieval relics of this enchanting region, as we venture through the lush landscapes of the Balkan states and their neighbouring countries, aboard the Golden Eagle Danube Express.

Trans-Canada Rail Adventure Toronto-Vancouver

13-day Independent Tour
North America
First-class

Book your qualifying 2017 Rocky Mountaineer adventure before November 4 and receive up to $600 per couple in added value: use for extra hotel nights in Vancouver, extra meals, and additional sightseeing. Contact us for details. Blackout dates apply.

Society of IRT Added Value: Get a free, one-way limo transfer (U.S. dollar value +$100) to/from Seattle or Vancouver airports when you book any Rocky Mountaineer trip on our website. Get free limo transfers both ways when you book the Grand Rail Circle tour.)

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Take this legendary Trans-Canada rail tour on two first-class trains: The Canadian, with VIA Rail’s lovely service, including its new, luxurious Prestige Class, and the all-daylight Rocky Mountaineer train.

See Niagara Falls, and spend four days exploring the pristine wilds of Lake Louise, Jasper and Banff National Parks. Tour runs between Toronto and Vancouver. Cross northern Ontario’s scenic lake lands, the prairies of Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta and the towering Canadian Rockies, before ending on the Pacific Coast.

For eastbound, Vancouver-Toronto itinerary, please click here.

Latest News: Click here for Track 25, our blog, for the latest news on the Canadian’s new Prestige Class as well as updates on our other World’s Top 25 Trains™.

Trans-Canada Rail Adventure: Vancouver-Toronto

12-day Independent Tour
North America
First-class

Book your qualifying 2017 Rocky Mountaineer adventure before November 4 and receive up to $600 per couple in added value: use for extra hotel nights in Vancouver, extra meals, and additional sightseeing. Contact us for details. Blackout dates apply.

Take this legendary Trans-Canada rail tour on two first-class trains: The Canadian, with VIA Rail’s lovely service, including its new, luxurious Prestige Class, and the all-daylight Rocky Mountaineer train.

See Niagara Falls, and spend four days exploring the pristine wilds of Lake Louise, Jasper and Banff National Parks. Tour runs between Vancouver and Toronto. Cross northern Ontario’s scenic lake lands, the prairies of Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta and the towering Canadian Rockies, before ending on the Pacific Coast.

Experience VIA Rail’s newest tier of service, Prestige Class, on the classic Canadian sleeper train. Board in Toronto and alight three days later in Jasper – the heart of the Canadian Rockies. There your tour continues with sightseeing and adventure, courtesy of the Rocky Mountaineer. Make your way through the Rockies and all the way to the coast to Vancouver.

Time permitting, add a day at the beginning of your journey and experience an exciting day of whale watching in Victoria, where you’ll see orcas, humpbacks, and minkes.

For westbound, Toronto-Vancouver itinerary, please click here.

Latest News: Click here for Track 25, our blog, for the latest news on the Rocky Mountaineer and other of our World’s Top 25 Trains™.

A Caspian Odyssey Along the Ancient Silk Road

16-day Escorted Tour
Asia,Europe
Luxury

Begin the captivating Caspian Odyssey journey in Yerevan, Armenia, where the skyline is dominated by snow-capped Mount Ararat towering in the distance. Then, board the luxurious all-ensuite Golden Eagle train and begin your adventure through the South Caucasus region.

Visit the Georgian cities of Tbilisi, Telavi, and Gori, all steeped in history both modern and ancient. Then make your way to Baku, Azerbaijan on the western shore of the Caspian Sea.

After an adventurous crossing on the Caspian Sea, you’ll join the ancient Silk Road trading route and visit Ashgabat, the gleaming capital of Turkmenistan. Then, visit Uzbekistan, with tours of Khiva, Bukhara, Samarkand, and Tashkent, before arriving at your final destination of Almaty, Kazakhstan.

This once-a-year tour takes you to places few western travelers have ever seen – and on one of the most luxurious trains in the world, the stunning Golden Eagle. There’s no better way to see these historic and otherworldly places!