China, Italy, China, Germany

That's the line up for the next few weeks. July and August have been quiet, with little work for TimOnTheTrain. That's actually quite normal. My clients tend to be a tiny bit older, and they don't do heat and they don't do kids - both of which are everywhere during the Summer months. This Thursday …

I’m not a Train Geek, but…

Miniatur Wunderland, Hamburg is the largest model railway in the world. It has a Floor area of 1,490 square metres and 15.4 Kilometres of track with 260,000 human figures, 130,000 trees and over 4,000 buildings. It includes a functioning airport and Fire Fighting service and national scenes from Germany, Scandinavia, Italy, Switzerland, Austria and the …

All Jacked Up

It's beginning to get confusing about time zones. Belarus is supposed to be 1 hour ahead of Warsaw and 1 hour behind Moscow but nobody seems to have told the Belarussians about this so they're already on Moscow time. At least we think so. Anyway, some time around 8pm (or possibly 9pm) we arrived at …

Day 1 – To Berlin

A long days travel today, but we made it and I'm writing this blog entry from the hotel in Berlin. Our day started with a glitch, when Eurostar cancelled our Brussels train and rebooked us On another one that left 40 minutes earlier. I asked Eurostar for the reason behind the cancellation and they blamed …

Only 9 Days To Go

Only 9 days to go until I set off on my Trans-Siberian adventure and I'm head down in preparation. I only have a small number of clients (It's a very expensive Tour and one that, at 19 days duration also requires a significant time commitment - it's not for everybody). Some of my clients are …

Sent to Siberia

The Winter Tours have now been allocated and I've got lucky. I'm getting to put another tick on my bucket list... The Trans-Siberian express! The Tour starts in London, then rail to Berlin, onwards again to Warsaw and then into Moscow where we pick up the express to Vladivostok, a total of about 8,000 miles. …

Why AMTRAK get a tough break

I came across this video which explains rather well the issues that affect AMTRAK trains in the USA, despite the unpromising title. My clients on USA Tours are often surprised by the slightly ramshackle state of the rolling stock and the smallness of some stations and passenger handling facilities. They also often wonder why there …

Maglev

The Maglev is the fastest train on the planet. It runs from Shanghai out to the airport at a speed of 430 km/h, so we thought we take a look, and see what it’s like. Because we are in adventurous bunch, we took the Metro to the maglev station. This has to be the only …

Back on the train…

Today was another travel day. We started with a visit to a jade carving factory and showroom. There’s also another birthday in our group and we’ve decided to continue the (recent) tradition of giving them something silly to wear on their head all day; this time a Moslem hat. After stopping off at a Pagoda …

Busy September

September is always the busiest month for Great Rail Journeys Tours - The GRJ client demographic is of a slightly older person, and as a rule, they don't do heat and they don't do kids... meaning that July & August are quiet months for Tours. But then comes September, and the taps are turned fully …

The Transamerican Rail Tour

Summer is starting to get busier - after a short rest, I'm already preparing for the next tour and this time it's the big one, the Cadillac of tours; the one that I joined for. It's some way out but so far the weather looks to be more settled than the last time I did this …

Tracks of the Deep South

My next tour leaves on Saturday - Atlanta, Nashville, Memphis, New Orleans and Houston. This is going to involve all of my favourite music! From now on I'm going to need to do a Welcome Meeting for my clients on the first morning. Nothing too fancy, just a chance for the clients to know what …

Amtrak Conductors

Dawn Albuquerque, New Mexico This photo caught my eye because it captures some of my favourite things about travel with Amtrak in the USA. Firstly, the metallic coach exterior; for me there is something exciting about this exterior finish which may be related to my airline background. It just looks more appealing to my eyes. Secondly, the …

Things You Never Knew… about St. Pancras Station

via 7 Weird Facts About St Pancras Station | Londonist