Round the world holiday by rail: great train journeys

Tailor-made holidays
Duration (in days): 75

From: UK

To: Russia | Mongolia | China | Vietnam | Thailand | Malaysia | Singapore | Japan | Australia | New Zealand | USA | Canada



Inc. International flights (per person, based on 2 sharing) 
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Experience some of the world’s great train journeys with this 10 week round the world by rail adventure! First, you’ll journey through the remote landscapes of Russia and Mongolia on the iconic Trans-Siberian route, finishing in the Chinese capital of Beijing. Next, you’ll be treated to luxurious cabins and top notch service aboard the decadent Eastern & Oriental in Asia and The Ghan in Australia. Finally, you’ll witness spectacular mountain vistas in New Zealand and Canada as you follow scenic routes accessible only by rail.

Your trip starts in Russia with a journey from St. Petersburg to Beijing through some of the most isolated regions in the world, including Siberia and Mongolia. On route, you’ll visit destinations reachable only by rail as you ride alongside the locals, sharing stories and sampling traditional food. Your time in Asia continues with visits to Vietnam, Thailand, Singapore and Japan. A rail journey is included in each country, including the luxurious Eastern & Oriental from Bangkok to Singapore and the high-speed Japanese bullet train from Tokyo to historical Kyoto, rich in culture and steeped in tradition.

Next, Australia! Travelling by rail allows you a large portion of vast Australia in a short space of time. Spend 3 nights in Sydney exploring the classic city sights before heading west to Perth on the Indian Pacific train, relaxing in your Gold Service private cabin. Your next stop is Darwin, located in the Northern Territory, famous for its stunning local national parks, rich in flora and fauna. Then, The Ghan will take you through the heart of the country stopping in the Red Centre and allowing you the chance to explore the true Australian outback before heading onwards to Adelaide, South Australia.

New Zealand and Canada offer some of the best experiences in scenic rail. Both the TranzAlpine and the Rocky Mountaineer are breathtaking rail journeys, known for their staggering views across some of the most beautiful landscapes in the world!

This round the world itinerary can be tailored to suit your requirements please contact one of our consultants to start planning your dream trip.

This holiday includes

  • International flights
  • All transfers as specified
  • Iconic rail journeys as specified
  • Accommodation throughout     
  • Excursions as mentioned in the itinerary


  • Travel across the length of Russia on the famous Trans-siberian railway              
  • Take the reunification express from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh         
  • Experience the luxury of the Eastern & Oriental Express             
  • Spend a week exploring two of Japan’s most intoxicating cities, Tokyo & Kyoto               
  • Take a snap next to the iconic Sydney Opera House
  • Swim in cascading waterfalls and stand beneath giant termite mounds in the NT, Australia       
  • Journey on board two of Australia’s most famous trains, the Indian Pacific & the Ghan
  • Soak up spectacular mountain views as you traverse across South Island, New Zealand
  • Take a ride on Canada’s iconic train, the Rocky Mountaineer     



Days 1-18: UK to St. Petersburg: Trans-Siberian railway

Depart the UK from your chosen airport, arriving into St. Petersburg, Russia.

Visit the Cathedral of the Spilled Blood in St. Petersburg | Travel Nation

This ‘Classic Big’ itinerary takes you from St. Petersburg to Moscow and across the length of Russia, through Mongolia and onto Beijing along the famous Trans-siberian railway network. Stopping along the way you will visit Lake Baikal, the world’s largest freshwater lake by volume. Here, you can try your hand at whole range of activities, from dog-sledding to snowmobiling and trekking. You’ll also spend time at a traditional Siberian village where a sauna visit and overnight stay in a Mongolian ‘ger’ will give you an inside glimpse into local life. Half of your nights will be spent aboard the sleeper train as you cross one of the most isolated and remote parts of the world. This iconic journey really is a once in a lifetime experience!
Spend a night in a traditional Mongolian ger | Travel Nation


Days 18-26: Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh: Reunification rail journey 

Next, you’ll journey from north to south on this week-long rail journey across the length of Vietnam, often referred to as the Reunification Express. Enjoy the culinary delights of Hanoi before heading south on the overnight train to captivating Hoi An, home to local night markets and lantern filled streets. Joining the railway once again you will end in the capital of Ho Chi Minh, offering a chance to learn more about Vietnam’s recent history with visits to the Vietnam War Museum and the Cu Chi tunnels, a labyrinth of underground passages used during the conflict.

Wander down lantern-lined streets in Hoi An | Travel Nation


Days 26-34: Eastern & Oriental Express: Bangkok to Singapore

After your trip to Vietnam, you’ll travel from Thailand to Singapore on the luxurious Eastern & Oriental Express. You’ll begin with a few days to explore Bangkok before joining the train and heading south to Singapore. On the way, you can relax in your luxury private cabin and enjoy elegant dining on board as you pass through western Thailand and northern Malaysia. You’ll also experience off-train excursions, such as a cruise down the River Kwai and a visit to the War Museum before finally arriving in Singapore, where we have given you two nights to experience the city.           

Scenic stops on the Eastern & Oriental | Credit: Belmond Media Centre


Days 34-40: Japan’s capitals

Explore Japan with this week-long adventure travelling from Tokyo to Kyoto by high-speed bullet train. Wander around some of Tokyo’s oldest temples and sample ‘matcha’ tea at a traditional Japanese tea house before travelling by train at speeds of up to 330km per hour to the former imperial capital of Kyoto. Here, you can experience a local cooking class and learn to make local dishes like rolled sushi, miso soup & Japanese salads. 

Get lost amongst the bright lights of Tokyo | Travel Nation


Days 41-47: Sydney stopover with Indian Pacific train to Perth

From Tokyo, you’ll fly over to Australia. We’ve included 3 nights in Sydney with this Sydney stopover package that also includes daily breakfast, transfers and an IVenture Pass, giving you access to a host of activities in the city at discounted prices. You’ll have two full days to explore, so why not head down to Sydney Harbour and see the big sights, including the Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge?

Start your trip amongst the iconic sites of Sydney

Next, you’ll cross the width of Australia on the legendary Indian Pacific. The Indian Pacific train journeys along the longest stretch of straight railway track in the world, from Sydney in the east all the way to Perth on the west coast. On the way, you’ll travel through the majestic Blue Mountains, as well as lush vineyards, gold rush towns and finally across the vast Nullabor Plain.
Take the legendary Indian Pacific train from Perth to Adelaide


Days 47-54: Darwin stopover with Ghan train to Adelaide

Its time now to head to the Northern Territory and the city of Darwin, located right at the top of Australia. Experience both the city and the outback on this 5 day trip including excursions to Kakadu & Litchfield National Parks, located within driving distance of the city. Explore cascading waterfalls, towering termite mounds, Aboriginal culture and indigenous wildlife before heading back to the city to relax on the waterfront and dine at one of the many restaurants on offer.

Florence Falls, Litchfield National Park, Northern Territory, Australia

From Darwin, you’ll take the famous Ghan train through the centre of Australia to Adelaide, in South Australia. It is, without doubt, one of the world’s great train journeys. Travel in style aboard this luxury train, offering enjoying delicious local cuisine in and off-train excursions to the Red Centre of Australia. Witness the true Australian outback from the comfort of your seat as you take advantage of the delicious selection of Australian wine on offer.        

You'll find a true Outback experience


Days 54-62: Scenic New Zealand by rail

Welcome to New Zealand! This trip explores South Island, starting and finishing in Christchurch. With a combination of self-drive and scenic rail you will explore the spectacular natural scenery this region is renowned for. Your trip includes a ride on the iconic TranzAlpine train from Christchurch to Greymouth, showcasing some of the most beautiful scenery in New Zealand. From Greymouth, you will explore the South Island by car, from the blue ice of the west coast glaciers to the captivating lakes of Queenstown.   

Crossing the Waimakariri River on the TranzAlpine | Credit: Kiwirail


Days 62-68: Los Angeles Stopover with Palm Springs & San Diego

America is the next stop on your trip, with a week in sunny California. Our 7-day self-drive itinerary begins in LA, before heading inland to the town of Palm Springs. You’ll then explore the desert landscapes of nearby Joshua Tree National Park before heading to the beaches of San Diego, the perfect spot to relax before moving north to Canada.

If you would like to extend your trip why not take a look at our iconic Californian road trip to San Francisco?

Explore the eerie landscape of Joshua Tree National Park


Days 68-74: Calgary to Vancouver: Majestic rail & drive          

In Canada we’ve included our week-long Majestic rail and drive package from Calgary to Vancouver by car and rail. First, you’ll spend two nights in the alpine town of Banff, with plenty of hiking opportunities nearby and local hot springs for some post-hike relaxation. Next up is the spectacular Lake Louise, the ‘Jewel of the Rockies’, where you can hike the ‘Plain of Six Glaciers Trail’ with dramatic views from its peak. You’ll also get out on the Athabasca glacier in Jasper with our ice explorer tour before boarding the famous ‘Rocky Mountaineer’ train back to Vancouver. With a stop in Kamloops, exploring this scenic region will be a highlight of your trip!

Sit back and watch the stunning Canadian scenery go by



We've done a similar trip...

If you'd like to get a feel for this trip, read our blog posts about The Ghan, the Eastern & Oriental Express, the Rocky Mountaineer and the Trans-Siberian, all written by Travel Nation consultants who have experienced these journeys first hand.

This itinerary is purely a suggestion and can be tailor-made to your requirements, so please contact us with your dates and requests and we’ll put together a bespoke quotation for you.              

What's included: 

  • International flights
  • Airport transfers as specified
  • Rail journeys as specified
  • All meals and beverages on board the E&O, Ghan &Indian Pacific
  • Accommodation throughout       
  • Meals as mentioned in the itinerary
  • Excursions as mentioned in the itineraries

Not included: 

  • Visa arrangements
  • Any meals not mentioned
  • Personal expenses
  • Tips & gratuities


73 nights in a mixture of 3-5* standard accommodation and on board trains as specified.

Hotels in this category include:

  • Santa Barbara Hotel, Hanoi

  • Aurora Riverside Hotel, Hoi An

  • Sonnet Saigon Hotel, Ho Chi Minh

  • Chatrium Riverside, Bangkok

  • The Fullerton, Singapore

  • Hilton Garden Inn Los Angeles Hollywood

  • Irwin’s Mountain Inn, Banff

  • Lake Louise Inn, Lake Louise

  • Lobstick Lodge, Jasper


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