Anyone in search of a beautiful train journey for a once-in-a-lifetime holiday needn't look further than Europe where a spectacularly scenic railway trip awaits.
Switzerland's Bernina Express runs from Chur and St Moritz in the east of the small country, before crossing the northern Italian border to Tirano.
Check FCDO advice before travelling to Switzerland and Italy. Currently (23 September 2020), Switzerland does not feature on the government's list of countries that British travellers can visit without self-isolating for 14 days in the UK on return.
This fascinating four-hour train ride negotiates 55 tunnels, 196 bridges and takes in three of Switzerland's four language regions (Italian, Romansh and German), while allowing you to experience a UNESCO World Heritage Site (the line from Thusis - Valposchiavo - Tirano) up close.
Just as you'd expect from one of the world's most captivating Alpine landscapes, this 90-mile journey offers views of glorious glaciers, dramatic mountains and breathtaking lakes.
Whether you take the trip in the summer when you can see Switzerland's verdant landscapes come alive or in the winter when snow covers the country creating a magical winter wonderland, this is one train journey to add to your holiday bucket list.
Some of the incredible experiences along the way include rolling over the UNESCO-protected Landwasser Viaduct that appears straight out of a Harry Potter film (just like the real movie location, the Glenfinnan Viaduct in Scotland).
The impressive Montebello Curve is another highlight and offers a view of the Bernina massif, the Morteratsch glacier, the three lakes of Pitschen, Nair and Bianco, as well as the Alp Grüm and the Brusio Circular Viaduct.
Meanwhile, the highest point on the great railway journey is 2,253 metres above sea level, where you will find the Ospizio Bernina. Here, you'll enjoy the Alps at their most spectacular.
During Covid-19, you'll find a few changes, including the compulsory wearing of masks, staff observing distancing and cashless payments on board. However, the views remain as captivating as ever.
If you've been looking for a wonderful gift for someone you love, or decided to skip a 2020 escape for a dream trip in 2021, the Bernina Express is for you.
You can experience escaping to the open air of the Swiss Alps while enjoying one of the world's top trains.
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