Archive for the ‘Europe’ Category

Amsterdam to Rotterdam, Netherlands

Posted: February 13, 2013 in Netherlands

A nice example of a powerful northern European main line.


Greek Cab Ride – Drama to Xanthi

Posted: January 31, 2013 in Greece

Here’s a longer ride to get your teeth into – a nice and high quality ride through north-east Greece – almost 90 mins.  Enjoy!

Part 1:

Part 2:


Staying with Norway, here’s a wonderful ride along the Flåm railway – an hour long very steep journey through stunning mountains from the junction station of Myrdal to Flåm on the Sognefjord. This is the steepest standard gauge railway in Europe, descending 863 meters in its 20km length, passing through 20 tunnels on the way.

NSB El 17 at Flåm

This is another release from NRK, who braught us the 7 hour long video of the Bergensbanen journey. They have done a lot of work with railway journeys in the framework of ‘slow cinema’ and I cant wait to see their recording of the Nordlandsbanen – one of the few lines in the world to cross the Arctic Circle – which should hopefully be available one day.

This has also been released as a torrent file, and you can download it here:

Freight Train on the Nordlandsbanen

Posted: September 2, 2012 in Norway

CargoNet Di 8 hauling freight tain on Nordlandsbanen

The Postojna Cave Railway

Posted: June 30, 2012 in Slovenia

Something really different this time. The Postojna cave features the longest stretch of cave open to general tourist visitors in the world – 3.3 miles. And how do you get through this long stretch? Why, by a small electric train of course! While it may see a bit of an intrusion to run rails into a cave system, especially given the unique life forms that live there, it has certainly produced a spectacular and charming journey.

Postojna train station
The Small station of the cave railway.

Postojna-cave train in front of entrance-side
A locomotive and wagon on display outside the cave.

This lovely little journey takes us from the Slovenian capital of Ljubljana out to the town of Kamnik, the line’s terminus. The Slovenian countryside is charming in the extreme, especially in the second half of this video, and Kamnik itself is just beautiful.

The best part of all (for me!) is that around the 06:00-06:15 mark you can see the rather formidable housing estate where I lived for a memorable half-year – too long ago now! It was nicer than it perhaps looks and seeing this really left me quite choked up!

A short gentle train ride through the coastal countryside in southern Croatia, from Kaštela to Split. An extraordinarily beautiful place and far off the beaten track of most railfan videos.

El18-2243 Finse 2004-07-07

The amazing 7 and a quarter hour journey from Bergen to Oslo is presented here unabridged either as two massive Youtube videos or as a single massive downloadable file of 22 gigabytes, released under the creative commons license via the bittorrent network.  As the first cab ride I ever saw, this still has a very special place for me but, beyond that, it is still one of the finest out there, easily.  The scenery is amazing, as we take a plunge straight through the Norwegian mountains.  It is a relatively up to date line, so the ride is smooth and fast – obviously in a quality express train.  Most of it is single track until it approachesOsloand the first couple of hours must surely have among the highest number of tunnels of any railway line anywhere.

We start our journey at Bergen in a mountainous landscape, and the film gets off to a somewhat strange start when, after just 150 seconds of journey out of the station and sailing through the town, we immediately dive into a massive tunnel.  Unlike many train ride videos, the tunnels are not edited.  While staring at a black screen for nearly five minutes quickly looses its charm, it does at least give you a feeling of the massive scale of the mountains we are travelling through.  There are a LOT of tunnels on this route, of varying lengths – so a lot of black screen.

The highlight of the trip comes as we rise above the snowline and the world turns white and soon we are travelling through places where you would hardly expect a train to go!  By any standards, this is a beautiful video and you certainly don’t have to be a train nut to appreciate it.  The scenery we follow those twin metal threads through is some of the best anywhere in the world after all.

Below are the two parts on youtube

Here is the link to the original article (in English): , which also contains links to download the full journey as a massive 22gb file via bittorrent.  I think that producers of DVD cab rides should be taking note here.  It is a large file, but the quality of the video is superior to that of any DVD that I have seen.  NRKs grand gesture of releasing this online was certainly the best way to do it – better than spanning over half a dozen DVDs.  This is a spectacular example of using new media and distribution channels to achieve something magnificent.