Grand Taste of the Highlands

6-day Escorted Tour
Europe
Luxury

Join the Grand Taste of the Highlands tour aboard Scotland’s premiere luxury train: the Belmond Royal Scotsman. It’s always hard to say farewell to the Scottish Highlands. That’s why we’ve made it possible for you to join us for a much longer journey.

Enjoy the magnificent scenery of the West Highland Line and an exclusive view of Mount Stuart, a spectacular Victorian Gothic house. Then after some free time in Edinburgh experience the wild beauty of the Scottish Highlands as you head north, enjoying a leisurely journey up the east coast through Aberdeen to Keith.

Try your hand at some outdoor activities on the Rothiemurchus Highland estate and enjoy a visit to Strathisla Distillery.

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

Clans, Castles & Isles

6-day Escorted Tour
Europe
Luxury

Belmond Royal Scotsman‘s Clans, Castles & Isles Tour is an exploration of the wild and rugged west coast of Scotland, including Oban and the Isles of Mull and Bute. New to the Belmond Royal Scotsman in 2017: full-service spa car. Inquire when you book your journey!

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

The Arctic Explorer: Quest for the Northern Lights journey takes you through stunning St. Petersburg and Moscow before exploring far north in search of the magnificent Aurora Borealis (Northern Lights).

Travel aboard Russia’s premier train, the incomparable Golden Eagle.

Note: The Golden Eagle train includes three 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.

Galápagos Islands: National Geographic Endeavour II

10-Day Escorted Tour
South America
Cruise

Lindblad Expeditions takes a 360º approach to their Galápagos expeditions — and guarantees guests have an in-depth encounter with all the wonders the Galápagos Islands have to offer. The newly-refitted 96-guest National Geographic Endeavour II is fully equipped with tools for exploration that will enable you to see more of the archipelago’s varied islands and habitats, have up-close encounters with incredible wildlife, experience the Galápagos undersea,and benefit from Lindblad Expeditions’ 50 years of experience and relationships in Galápagos.

Encounter abundant wildlife
Blue-footed boobies. Flightless cormorants. Darwin’s finches. Pink flamingos. Sea lions on beaches or gamboling underwater. Giant tortoises grazing in the highlands. The wildlife of Galápagos is legendary for its uniqueness and lack of fear, allowing you the rare experience of being treated as an equal in the wild world. Each island contains endemic species, and you’ll have the opportunity to see a panoply of Galápagos’ creatures in their native habitats—on land and in the sea.

Every day is active and engaging
You’ll be able to snorkel nearly every day, sometimes twice a day (SCUBA opportunities are also available at charge on select departures). For those who prefer to stay dry, there’s the adventure of Endeavour II’s glass bottom Zodiac. And each day you’ll have the option to walk, hike, kayak, paddleboard or Zodiac cruise, and to join a different naturalist as you choose: there are no assigned groups.

Travel in excellent company
Explore under the sure guidance of an expedition leader, four handpicked naturalists, including a Lindblad-National Geographic certified photo instructor, and an undersea specialist, plus a wellness specialist. Their knowledge and passion for the islands is your key to this once-in-a-lifetime experience.

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, and 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.

Switzerland’s Classic Trains

15 or 8-day independent Tour
Europe
First-class

If you’ve been waiting to take some of the most scenic train trips in the world, wait no longer! This independent journey includes the Glacier Express and Bernina Express, as well as the Centovalli Railway and Golden Pass line—four of Switzerland’s most scenic routes possible by train. The Furka Steam adds a historic element, and the mountain railways are impressive engineering feats. Plus an optional trip on the Jungfrau Railway, which celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2012. You’ll never stop looking out your train window or taking photos!  Available as an 8-day or a 15-day tour.

French Country Waterways: Through the Heart of Burgundy

7-Day Escorted Tour
Europe
Cruise

Discover picturesque central Burgundy with French Country Waterways on the luxurious Nenuphar and pass through a region rich in history, wine, and art.

Situated in the heart of France, the tranquil Burgundy region is interlaced with a network of over 600 miles of waterways. A truly timeless place, Burgundy has been at the crossroads of France since the prehistoric age, and each subsequent culture has left behind its distinctive imprint.

The rich legacy of art, architecture, and commerce recalls an age when the Dukes of Burgundy were more powerful than the French kings. Today, Burgundy’s renowned vineyards produce some of the world’s most prized wines, and an abundance of superb ingredients makes it one of the great gastronomic centers.

The Society of International Railway Travelers highly recommends this Virtuoso partner. No, it’s not a train! But it’s the next best thing: a luxury barge that will take you back in time and steep you in relaxation and beauty.

Tours run April to October and departs every Sunday.  We will happily book your Paris stay pre- and post-tour at our favorite boutique hotel.

Trans-Mongolian Express: The Naadam Festival

13-day Escorted Tour
Asia
Luxury

The Naadam Festival is the big event in Mongolia—a lively national celebration, held every year. Naadam means “three manly games.” Known as the world’s second-oldest Olympics, it celebrates what defined civilization in the Steppes eight centuries ago—archery, wrestling, and horse riding. The competitors in the riding events are all children aged between 5 and 12, many of whom have been in the saddle since the age of one. It is claimed that such equestrian skills won Genghis Khan an empire that stretched from the Sea of Japan all the way to Europe. Once a religious ceremony, the festival now formally commemorates the 1921 revolution when Mongolia declared itself a free country. This tour is a unique opportunity to be among the few non-Mongolians to experience this spectacular, colorful, but little-known festival and soak up the exciting atmosphere of this national holiday. Our tour combines the Naadam Festival with an amazing overland journey from Moscow on board the Golden Eagle private luxury train.

Note: The Golden Eagle train includes three 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.

Castles of Transylvania: Istanbul to Budapest aboard the Danube Express

7-day Escorted Tour
Europe
Luxury

Absorb the vibrant cultures, ancient castles, and spectacular scenery on this 7-day “Castles of Transylvania” journey aboard the Golden Eagle Danube Express.

Delve into the history surrounding Romania’s most infamous historical figure, Vlad the Impaler – or as he is more commonly known, Count Dracula – on this 7-day rail cruise of Transylvania. Enjoy a walking tour of the beautifully preserved town of Sighisoara where the Count was born, discover Sibiu’s Evangelic Cathedral where Vlad’s son was buried after his assassination, and visit impressive Bran Castle — the residence of the vampire count, and the setting made famous by Bram Stoker’s novel.

Singapore-Bangkok Extended Tour: Fables of the Peninsula

7-day Escorted Tour
Asia
Luxury

Fables of the Peninsula is a leisurely, luxury rail journey, where guests gain unique insights from local people, including sightseeing in Kuala Lumpur, the Highlands of Malaysia, Penang, and Hat Wanakon Beach. For more information about the Eastern & Oriental Express itself, please click here.

Includes one night at the stunning Raffles Hotel Singapore, and one night at the Cameron Highlands Resort.

A Taste of Italy on the Danube Express: Taormina to Budapest

5-day Escorted Tour
Europe
Luxury

Experience a Taste of Italy by private luxury train on the Golden Eagle Danube Express.

This short tour packs in many highlights in just five days, beginning in beautiful Taormina and ending in Budapest. Take one of the world’s few train ferries from Sicily to the Italian mainland; enjoy Bari’s charming old town and walk along the cobblestone streets of San Marino. Continue to Slovenia to explore its delightful capital, Ljubljana, and end with a special visit to Budapest’s Railway Museum. Travel in comfort aboard the Golden Eagle Danube Express.

Taste of the Highlands Tour

3-day Escorted Tour
Europe
Luxury

There is simply no better way to experience the drama and wild beauty of Scotland than aboard the Belmond Royal Scotsman luxury train.

This short introduction to the Scottish Highlands is ideal for those who like outdoor activity. At Rothiemurchus Estate, for example, there will be the opportunity to try your hand at clay pigeon shooting, venturing out with the Estate’s rangers on a Highland safari or just enjoying a Highland walk. We love this train for all of its great dining, service, beauty within the train — and without. The scenery is spectacular, of course. And one great thing about this train: there are 4 cabins for solo use with no single supplement. Great for a family of couple and solo travelers. Call early to book!

New to the Belmond Royal Scotsman in 2017: full-service spa car. Inquire when you book your journey!

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

Rovos Rail African Golf Safari

9-Day Escorted Tour
Africa
Luxury

Rovos Rail has designed a delightful nine-day Golf Safari to entertain the most discerning player with optional excursions for non-playing guests at all venues.

Relax as the train travels northwest towards Sun City in the hills of Pilanesberg for a day at this renowned facility. In the foothills of the imposing Drakensberg Mountains, 18 holes await at the Champagne Sports Resort with a guided tour of the battlefields a further highlight for our non-golfers.

Next the golfers play at the Durban Country Club while non-playing guests enjoy a city tour followed by lunch at the club. Then on to Zululand for game-viewing in the Hluhluwe Reserve before the train heads towards Swaziland. Tee off at the Royal Swazi Golf Club or enjoy a morning game drive in Mkhaya Game Reserve, followed by a visit to Ngwenya Glass with lunch at Guava Galleries.

The train then travels west towards Nelspruit, where golfers play the challenging Leopard Creek course or enjoy a game drive in the world-famous Kruger Park, followed by lunch at Buhala Lodge. Depart for Pretoria where this memorable journey ends.

Latest News: IRT’s Angela Walker and Rachel Hardy just returned from South Africa, where they were inspecting Rovos Rail’s Pride of Africa, among other luxury travel partners. Click here for part one of their report on the trainhere for part two.

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

Kuala Lumpur-Bangkok by Luxury Train

2-day Escorted Tour
Asia
Luxury

New for 2018: House wine, house spirits, and local beer are now included in the tour price aboard the Eastern & Oriental Express.

Journey on board the Eastern & Oriental Express from Kuala Lumpur to exciting Bangkok through the heart of South-East Asia. Visit a Malaysian village and choose from several different options for touring in Kanchanburi – visit the infamous River Kwai Bridge, or enjoy a biking tour or cooking class.

This itinerary is also available in the reverse direction: Bangkok-Kuala Lumpur. Click here for details.

Land of the Midnight Sun: Russia & the Arctic Circle by Luxury Train

12-day Escorted Tour
Europe
Luxury

Embark on this “Land of the Midnight Sun” journey on one of Europe’s most luxurious trains, the Golden Eagle, and explore the dramatic beauty of Russia, Norway, and the Arctic Circle. Your journey’s finale will take place in St. Petersburg, where you’ll have a chance to revel in the spectacle of the White Nights Festival and take in a world-class ballet, opera, or orchestral performance.

Incomparable cities, remote communities, dramatic fjords, abundant wildlife, and serene forests await you on this journey into the “land of the midnight sun.”

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.

Tahiti and the Society Islands aboard the Paul Gauguin

8-day Cruise
Australia & the Pacific
Cruise

IRT’s Angela Walker took this wonderful cruise in October 2015. To read about her adventure, click here.

Discover your own island inspiration in the destination that enchanted painter Paul Gauguin, author James A. Michener, and countless others.

In one wonderful week, you’ll explore the best of the South Pacific, with stops in lush Huahine, beautiful Bora Bora, and postcard-perfect Moorea. Once you’ve made these islands your home—even if just for a week—they’ll always be calling for you to return.

Embark on the m/s Paul Gauguin in Tahiti, an island on the wish list of almost every cruise enthusiast. Then, sail on to Huahine, known as the “Garden Island” for its lush rainforests and dramatic terrain.

Next, spend a day on Motu Mahana, a South Seas paradise. On a white sand beach beneath palm fronds ruffled by gentle breezes, you can snorkel, kayak, play volleyball, or simply relax, and enjoy a traditional feast with Polynesian entertainment.

Then it’s on to spectacular Bora Bora to see why author James A. Michener called it “the most beautiful island in the world.” Bask on a private beach on a motu off the coast and admire the jagged volcanic peaks, multi-hued lagoons, and palm-fringed beaches of Moorea, said to be the inspiration for Bali Hai.

Golden Eagle: Persian Odyssey

18-Day Escorted Tour
Asia,Europe
Luxury

As rail tours go, experiencing Persia and the Silk Road on board the Golden Eagle is truly stunning. Combining one of the most important trading routes of ancient civilisation with the remarkable treasures of Persia, this unique journey takes in destinations that are rarely experienced by Western visitors, which makes it all the more special.

GERMANY SUMMER SPECIAL: London-Paris-Berlin & v.v.

2 days
Europe
Luxury

Located in northeastern Germany on the banks of the River Spree, Berlin is the country’s capital as well as its largest city, covering approximately 550 square miles. It is a city of culture, politics, media and science. The VSOE now visits this historic city.

Berlin is home to renowned universities, orchestras, museums and is well-know for its festivals, diverse architecture and contemporary arts. Dramatic history, eclectic architecture and a thriving social scene await in Berlin.

London-Paris-Verona & v.v.

2 days
Europe
Luxury

From the cobbles of fashionable Carnaby Street to the romantic arches of Piazza dei Signori, travel between two historic cities aboard the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express. Tour is also available between Paris-Verona and Verona-Paris.

Your time aboard the train promises to be as enchanting as the destination. Whether sampling world-class cuisine, listening to the resident pianist or admiring the passing scenery, every moment promises multi-sensory delight.

 

Bangkok-Chiang Mai-Bangkok Extended Tour: Epic Thailand

8-day Escorted Tour
Asia
Luxury

NEW! Experience the charm and beauty of Thailand  with a journey aboard the luxurious Eastern & Oriental Express (E&O).  Of all the journeys the Orient Express is offering in this region, this has the most on-train time – six glorious nights.  Enjoy the spectacular open-air deck as you cruise through the countryside, on-board dining, relaxing in your cabin or in the lounge.

See Eleanor’s photos from her Epic Thailand trip:  www.facebook.com/album.php

www.facebook.com/media/set/

Latest News: Click here for owner Eleanor Hardy’s blog about the Epic Thailand journey aboard the Eastern & Oriental Express.

 

Royal Canadian Pacific Charter

Charter Only
North America
Luxury

The overnight capacity is for up to 30 guests in 18 staterooms. The room types are below:

  • 5 double rooms – each room has one standard double bed
  • 7 lower twin rooms – each room has two single beds shaped in an “L” configuration
  • 1 upper & lower twin room – two single beds in “bunk bed” configuration (currently sold as a single capacity room)
  • 5 single rooms – each room as one single bed

*Please note: there are only 12 rooms that sleep 2 so if you have more than 12 couples, some would be in separate rooms.

Amazon Voyage

10 Day voyage aboard Zafiro
South America
Cruise

The rainforest of the Amazon Basin fires the imagination of dreamers and explorers, hinting at an adventure like no other. On this Amazon Voyage, daily excursions allow you to discover the secrets hidden under the rich canopy and along narrow tributaries beyond the river’s edge. Be amazed by the symphony of cicadas and tree frogs, howls from the howler monkeys and songs from the many species of birds found here. Spend evenings cruising the headwaters of Earth’s most legendary river, stargazing and storytelling as Peruvian lore becomes part of your personal story.

Travel aboard the Zafiro, a luxurious vessel chartered for your adventure, which blends stylish design and modern comforts. Classic touches include magnificent floor-to-ceiling windows and, for those on the Upper Deck, private balconies. A ship staff and crew of 25, including a cruise director and local naturalist guides, are joined by an IE Expedition Leader to ensure an unprecedented level of service. All 19 spacious suites are air-conditioned and feature en-suite bathrooms, a desk and ample closet space.

The Amazon Voyage includes a variety of flexible activity options, such as swimming, bird watching, jungle walks, kayaking, village visits, peaceful excursion boat rides, cooking demonstrations and more, so that you enjoy an enriching and fun adventure. Against a backdrop of rainforest and water, create a lifetime of memories. Join us in exploring the diverse ecosystems that comprise the heart of Earth’s greatest wilderness.

Royal Canadian Rockies Experience

7-day Escorted Tour (Suggested Itinerary)
North America
Luxury

*News Flash*
In 2014, the Royal Canadian will be operated only on a whole-train charter basis.

The Royal Canadian Pacific luxury train explores western Canada’s Rocky Mountains with its ever-changing backdrop of snow-capped peaks. This luxury rail service, tops in North America, features impeccable on-board food and service as well as carefully crafted tours to special places such as the dazzling Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park and beautiful Lake Louise.

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