(Last Updated On: 10/07/2019)

Calling all adventure junkies! Want to know what the Best hiking start points and how to get there by train? Then you’re in the right place! 

 

BEST HIKING START POINTS: CINQUE TERRE COASTAL TRAIL – ITALY

 

CINQUE TERRE Hiking Start Points

 

Hiking in the Cinque Terre is one of the best things to do in Italy, and one of the Best hiking start points. Its hiking trails are among the most beautiful in Europe and if you are an outdoor lover or just someone who wants some exercise in between decadent Italian meals, it is one of the most rewarding ways to enjoy Italy’s spectacular coastline.

But when you hike the Cinque Terre you need to come prepared. From understanding trail difficulties to packing the right things and going at the correct time of year, being well informed will make the difference between a life-changing hike and a wearying slog.

How to get there by Train:

Once in Italy, with the help of Save A Train , the train is still the best way to reach Cinque Terre. There’s a local train, the Cinque Terre Express, which runs along the coast between the stations of La Spezia Centrale and Levanto. It stops at all five towns (Monterosso, Corniglia, Vernazza, Manarola, Riomaggiore), and you’ll need to take it to move between them once you’re in the area (unless you opt to hike on the oft-challenging trails). As of summer 2016, the cost of the Cinque Terre Express is €4 per trip. During the off-season, typically from November to March, the cost drops to €1.80. This train does not offer reserved seating.

• Arriving from Florence or Rome: There are a few direct trains per day from Firenze Santa Maria Novella station to La Spezia Centrale; others require you to change trains in Pisa. Prices start at €13.50. At La Spezia, change for the Cinque Terre Express.

Florence to Levanto Trains

Florence to La Spezia Trains

Rome to La Spezia Trains

Rome to Levanto Trains

 

BEST HIKING START POINTS: EAGLES WALK – AUSTRIA

The Eagle Walk is made up of 23 linked stages, which follow a breath-taking route through the Tirol. The Best hiking start points in the region, many sections can be easily accessed by cable car and completed as a full- or half- day tour. We’d like to introduce you to our favorite section of this blog.

Whether you’re planning a day hike or a multi-week adventure in the mountains, you will find the Eagle Walk to be a great outdoor experience. It offers unparalleled opportunities to explore, experience and connect with nature.

Our Top Pick: Lake Zireiner See

A half- day walk for occasional hikers. From Kramsach in the Lower Inn Valley, take the chair lift to the Sonnwendjoch house. A short walk leads to the idyllic Zireiner lake, which is situated in a valley almost 1,800-meters above sea level – a great place to cool off in the hot summer months. The walk continues to Zireiner Alm pasture (1,698m) before returning to the top of the chair lift, allowing you to ride back down into the Inn Valley.

How to get there by Train:

It’s easy to travel from the UK to Austria by train. You can go from London to Vienna, Salzburg or Innsbruck in a single day by high-speed train. Or take a lunchtime Eurostar from London to Brussels, a Thalys high-speed train to Cologne and the excellent Nightjet sleeper train to Innsbruck, Linz or Vienna overnight. Once there, getting to Tirol is easy with its comprehensive network of public transport. It is easy to travel around the region using trains. Hikers wishing to take on part or all of the Eagle Walk can access the start and finish points of each stage using local public transport.

London to Brussels Trains

Brussels to Cologne Trains

Cologne to Vienna Trains

Cologne to Innsbruck Trains

 

BEST HIKING START POINTS: CAMINO DE SANTIAGO – SPAIN

CAMINO DE SANTIAGO – SPAIN Trail

 

The Camino is known in English as the Way of St James.  All Camino pilgrimage routes lead to Santiago de Compostela as this is where the remains of St James, (Santiago), were discovered in the ninth century.  The pilgrimage was popular in the 10th, 11th and 12th century and then slowly declined in popularity.

By the 20th century, almost no one was walking any of the routes.  Then in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s the route became of interest to a few.  They began to write and map the routes again.

In the 21st century, the idea of a pilgrimage is perhaps quaint. However, the exertion of walking for a month and being disconnected to modern devices is immensely liberating.

Camino Routes:

 

Camino Spain possible Routes

 

Sarria is the town preferred by pilgrims as the point where they embark on the Camino de Santiago. Of the more than 300,000 pilgrims that journeyed Santiago de Compostela in 2017, some 60% had chosen to follow the Camino Frances. And more than 80,000 of them chose Sarria as their starting point. The main reasons for choosing Sarria is that it offers the minimum distance required for pilgrims to be awarded the Compostela (the pilgrim’s certificate). The distance to Santiago can be covered in just five stages and boasts a large number of accommodation options and services for pilgrims. Sarria is easy to get to on public transport from different parts of Spain.

How to get to Sarria by train:

The train is one of the most comfortable options if you are traveling from Madrid to Sarria. There is a direct connection that leaves Madrid’s Chamartin train station twice a day, with a journey time of approximately six hours. Moreover, there are various trains that connect Madrid with Santiago de Compostela and Lugo, Galician cities from which it is very easy to get to Sarria, with several direct connections every day. You can consult all times and frequencies by contacting Renfe, Spain’s national train company.

The train is also the best option when traveling from Barcelona. There are daily direct links from Barcelona (or you can change at Monforte de Lemos), with trains during the day (if you combine the AVE or high-speed train with Long Distance options) and overnight trains. The average journey time from Barcelona is 12 hours. The train from Barcelona to Sarria also connects with other major cities including Tarragona, Lleida, Zaragoza, Pamplona, Vitoria, Burgos, Palencia, and Leon.

From Santiago de Compostela, Renfe offers two daily trains to Sarria: one at 5 pm (two hours’ journey time); and at 6.07 pm (with a journey time of almost four hours).

From Lugo, the train is also the most comfortable option. Renfe offers numerous daily connections that will get you to Sarria from Lugo in 30 minutes.

 

BEST HIKING START POINTS: WESTWEG TRAIL – GERMANY

WESTWEG TRAIL – GERMANY View

 

It can be said that the Westweg trail is the origin of all German long-distance hiking trails. It became the first designated path of its kind back in 1900. Since then, the trail has grown to cover a distance of 177 miles (285 kilometers) — starting in Pforzheim in the north and ending in Basel in the south. 

In contrast to the Mittelweg and the Ostweg, the Westweg takes you mostly through the west of the mountains. And as you go, you will witness the natural diversity of the largest German low mountain range. The dense fir and spruce forests. This is what gives the mountain range its name, the treeless expanses in the northern Black Forest. Quiet mountain lakes, panoramic rock crests, glacial valleys, and mountains.

In between, you’ll climb the highest peaks again and again. You hike over the plateau of the Hornisgrinde and visit the Belchen and the Hochblauen. Enjoy the view on the Schliffkopf and roam the high moor around the Hohloh. A true high point of your hike, of course, will be the ascent of the Feldberg. The highest mountain in the Black Forest.

How to get to Westweg by train: 

Most hiking stretches can be split up in manageable distances. That’s because most villages along the hiking trails can be reached well by train. Great help for planning the hike is the general map free of charge of the Schwarzwald Tourismus GmbH (Ludwigstrase 23, 79104 Freiburg, www.blackforest-tourism.com/konus). It shows the train and bus routes for KONUS in the whole region.

In addition, many communities have special tips for hiking tours and day trips for their KONUS guests. If you plan a longer stay it might be useful to get a SchwarzwaldCard as well. This card is a good investment if you use the discounts connected to the card intensively.

Offenburg to Freiburg Trains

Stuttgart to Freiburg Trains

Leipzig to Freiburg Trains

Nuremberg to Freiburg Trains

 

 

Ready to put on your hiking boots and enjoy some nature hiking? Book your train within minutes and with NO extra fees at Save A Train !

 

 

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