Rail holidays to Italy

Rail holidays to Italy: tailor-made itineraries and luxury, touring holidays by train to Italy and within Italy, and rail-drive holidays for individuals

A luxury rail holiday to Italy is a justifiably popular and enjoyable experience. There are several ways to reach Italy by train and there are several types of holiday that we can arrange for you whilst you’re in Italy, using a train for all the travel or part of the time. If you want to travel on day-time times from London to Italy, you need to spend at least one night in Paris or somewhere along the way. Lausanne, Zurich and Lucerne are popular overnight stops in Switzerland as you can reach these cities the same day from London. Then, you travel south through the Alps into Italy the next day. An alternative is to take the sleeper train from Paris to Milan, Verona or Venice. This leaves Paris in the evening and arrives in Milan about 06.00 hrs the next morning. Once in Italy we can arrange train travel from place to place, usually the major cities, for example Venice, Florence and Rome, or, depending on the location of your holiday in Italy, we would advise that you have a hire-car for the duration of your stay, for example, if you wanted to take the train to Italy and stay in the countryside for a week.
Expressions Holidays offers a selection of suggested touring holidays by train to Italy, rail-drive holidays to Italy and rail holidays within Italy including flights there and back. These suggested itineraries can be booked exactly as they are, or you can ask us to adapt them in any way, with us tailoring your rail holiday according to your needs, navigating through the options to select the most convenient trains and most appropriate hotels. We offer a wide range of hotels in Italy, from charming boutique hotels to luxurious grand hotels, in the countryside, on the lakes, by the coast and in the Italian cities.
Rail holidays to Italy can also combine and involve special interests and activities. You can take the train to Italy for a Verona opera break, or you can take the train to and from Italy and stay in Umbria for one of our cookery holidays. Just find the special interest holiday you’re interested in and we will tailor the travel arrangements for you to include rail travel.

Rail touring holidays to Italy

Rail travel to Italy is an increasingly popular option for a touring holiday to Italy. There is really a choice of overnight train or day-time trains. One option is to travel to Paris by Eurostar from London St Pancras, Ebbsfleet and Ashford International and then take the Thello overnight sleeper to Milan, Verona or Venice, in a two-berth sleeper. Another option is to travel to Paris and then travel by fast TGV-Lyria train to Switzerland where you spend a night (Lausanne, Zurich or Lucerne are ideal places) and then the next day enjoy a scenic day-time journey over the Alps to Italy on a fast EuroCity service to Milan, where you change for onward travel to your destination. This can be done in both directions, taking different routes. A third option is to take a day-time TGV from Paris to Turin or Milan, but without spending a night in Paris beforehand you can only get as far as Turin or Milan in one day. For a special occasion or for a leisurely, nostalgic rail journey, we offer the Venice Simplon-Orient Express London to Venice or vice versa.

Rail-drive touring holidays of Italy

A rail-drive touring holiday to Italy is a rewarding way to combine the experience of a rail journey from London to Italy, perhaps with stops along the way, with a chance to explore countryside regions in Italy that lend themselves more to car travel than train travel. Typical examples of this are a rail-drive holiday to Tuscany, where you take the train from London to Paris, Paris to Milan, Milan to Florence, then collect your hire-car, perhaps after a short stay in Florence itself, to tour Tuscany, staying in three of four different places which might be the Chianti region, San Gimignano, Montalcino and the Maremma. You return by train, the same way or a different way.

Rail touring holidays within Italy

If you don’t want the train journey from London to Italy, either day-time with stops or overnight from Paris, then you can fly to Italy and then continue by train. Many clients combine stays in various Italian cities, travelling by train in between, for example Venice, Florence and Rome and then flying home.

Our hotels in Italy

All the luxury hotels that are featured by Expressions Holidays have been selected to provide high standards of comfort, service and cuisine. Our hotels are renowned for their charm and character, quality of surroundings and service whilst providing rest and relaxation amid an atmosphere of luxury and style.

Special interest holidays by rail

Our special interest holidays, such as opera breaks, cookery holidays, wine tours for small groups and garden tours for small groups, can include rail travel instead of flights. We might have to adjust the departure dates and include overnights en-route but these changes can be made to accommodate your desire to travel by train.

Train information

Eurostar offers almost hourly departures every day, with an average journey time from London St Pancras to Paris of 2 hours and 18 minutes. Not all trains stop at Ebbsfleet and Ashford stations in Kent, but parking is plentiful at both stations. The Eurostar trains have 8 coaches which are split into Standard Class, Standard Premier and Business Premier as well as two cafeterias. Standard Premier customers are served a light cold meal and enjoy a more spacious environment than Standard Class, while Business Premier customers receive a hot meal and unlimited beverages as well as lounge access. Thello is an overnight sleeper service linking Paris with Milan, Verona and Venice. Accommodation on-board is in two-berth sleepers, three berth sleepers, or 4 and 6 berth couchettes. Sleeper cars offer a washbasin with power socket, toiletries bag, air-conditioning, room bell, deadbolt lock, wake-up call if required, welcome drink and snack in cabin and newspapers. The couchettes offer air-conditioning as well as a welcome drink and snack in cabin. TGV-Lyria trains are high-speed trains that run between Paris and Switzerland, reaching Zurich in about 4 hours, Lausanne in 3 hours 40 minutes and Geneva in just over 3 hours. There is a choice between Standard Class and First Class. EuroCity trains are operated jointly by Swiss Federal Railways (SBB) and Italian Railways (Trenitalia) and run between Swiss major cities and Milan, with extensions to Verona and Venice. The trains have first and second class and a restaurant car.

A very enjoyable and well organised holiday.
Mr V, June 2019

Our rail holidays to Italy include

● Travel arrangements with trains as required
● Sample touring itineraries to book as they are or adapt
● Flexible durations and multi-centre stays
● Accommodation in personally-selected 4-or 5-star hotels
● Additional travel arrangements such as flights, transfers, car-hire to combine with rail travel
● Combinations with special interests
● Overnight stops en-route to Italy

Included in all our holidays

● Concierge service
● Handcrafted helpful hints and local information provided with all our holidays
● Personal service by your sales consultant who looks after all aspects of your holiday
● Full financial protection with our ATOL (3076) for all holidays including a flight and our ABTOT for all non-air holidays

● Travel arrangements with trains as required
● Sample touring itineraries to book as they are or adapt
● Flexible durations and multi-centre stays
● Accommodation in personally-selected 4-or 5-star hotels
● Additional travel arrangements such as flights, transfers, car-hire to combine with rail travel
● Combinations with special interests
● Overnight stops en-route to Italy

Call us on 01392 441245