If you have ever wondered how to visit every country on the Eurail Pass then I have made an itinerary that can show you how exactly how to do it.
A Eurail Global Pass covers 28 countries in Europe, though it really works in 31 countries. Not included in the official count are Monaco and Liechtenstein (which don’t have a rail operator but have stations) and Northern Ireland (UK) which you can visit when in the Republic of Ireland.
Passes range in time validity from 5 days within 1 month to 15 days within 2 months. Consecutive day passes range from 15 days continuous up to the Grandaddy of all rail passes, 3 months continuous.
While I was using my one month pass I wondered if it would be possible to see every country included in Eurail. With a lot of help from the Eurail timetable I was able to work out an itinerary should you wish to do so.
when you open up the Eurail map you will be confronted with thousands of different ways in which you could plan your route. There are so many variables on how you can achieve this trip, so to give myself focus I elected to visit every capital city in every country, plus the “bonus” countries. Along the way I’ve included the big cities that would feature on most “Grand Tour of Europe” lists.
I worked this itinerary out using real train times, and have made the travel days as realistic as possible. If you would like to use this itinerary you can refer to this Eurail Pass Spreadsheet.
To keep track of capital cities and countries visited I have coded the headings in this format:
[Bolded Brackets]: Entry into country for first time.
[Brackets]: Reentry into country.
Each day is numbered and there are 92 days in the 3 month pass.
Every Country On The Eurail Pass Itinerary
1 – Dublin [Ireland] – Rosslare Harbour – Overnight Ferry
In order to visit every country it’s best to begin (or end) your Eurail odyssey in Dublin to save backtracking. As this is the start destination you can spend as much time as you like in Dublin before you use your pass.
Once you’re ready to leave then it’s time to validate your Eurail pass for three months of travel. From Dublin get the train to Rosslare Harbour for the overnight ferry to France.
[Temple Bar, Dublin.]
2 – Morlaix [France] – Saint-Malo
Welcome to France, and continental Europe! One of the joys of Eurailing is making the most of transferring trains. Instead of waiting for a train at the station, make the most of your time by seeing the sites. At Morlaix you have a 40 minutes between trains. In half an hour you can see the Viaduc de Morlaix which is next to the station.
[Viaduct of Morlaix, France.]
Arriving at Saint-Malo in the afternoon, spend the rest of the day inside the historic walled city.
3 – Tours
For this itinerary I have listed as many routes as possible that avoid having to pay a reservation fee. In France the TGV (high speed train) goes everywhere so avoid those if you don’t want to pay extra. Taking the alternative trains takes longer, and sometimes there will be multiple changes. Todays trip to Tours takes 6 hours and 22 minutes, with 3 changes. You can assess each day individually if you would prefer a faster train.
[Medieval buildings at Place Plumereau, Tours.]
4 – Bordeaux
Another 3 changes of trains and 5 hours and 12 minutes later brings you to Bordeaux. There is more to Bordeaux than wine (though many will disagree) with the historic old city being listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site.
5 – San Sebastian [Spain]
San Sebastian is just over the border from France, where you can to transfer to a metro line (Metro Donostialdea) at Hendaye. San Sebastian is famous for its food scene, and there are some great beaches here.
[A beach day at San Sebastian, Spain.]
6 – Leon
Leon is about 5 hours from San Sebastian on a direct train (which requires a reservation fee). Arriving at 14:30 you will have enough time to see the wonderful architecture of the old city.
[Santa María de León Cathedral, León.]
7 – Santiago de Compostela
One change of train and 5 hours 43 minutes later brings you to Santiago de Compostela. This city is famous for being the end point of The Camino, so you may see walking pilgrims around the city.
[Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, Spain.]
8 – Porto [Portugal]
About 3 hours south of Santiago is Porto in Portugal. Check timetables at Santiago as the transfer at the border for the non-reservation option is not updated online.
9 – Lisbon
Todays travel day might make more sense to get the InterCity train. The regional option takes about 7 hours and requires 3 changes. The IC is direct and takes about 3 hours (and requires a 5 Euro fee). I’ve accounted for the regional option but you can choose either.
[Yard of the Palace, Lisbon.]
10 – Lisbon – Overnight Train
The only train from Lisbon to Madrid is an overnight sleeper train. This works out in your favour as you now get a full day in Lisbon. Sleeper trains require a reservation, but considering that you are saving a nights accommodation I put this expense in the accommodation budget. A seat is 7 euros, or a bed in a 4-bed sleeper is 29 euros per person.
[Gare do Oriente, Lisbon.]
11 – Madrid [Spain]
The overnight train from Lisbon arrives in Madrid at 8:40 in the morning, giving you the whole day ahead to enjoy Madrid.
12 – Zaragoza
Continuing the theme of avoiding high speed trains whenever possible, make your way to Zaragoza with regional trains and see its old city area, part of which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
[Cathedral-Basilica of Our Lady of the Pillar, Zaragoza.]
13 – Barcelona
2 regional trains will get you to Barcelona in 6 hours so I picked an early train to get you there at midday.
[Sagrada Familia Cathedral, Barcelona.]
14 – Barcelona
For this itinerary to see 30 countries in 3 months I have scheduled 10 days off out of the 92 days available on your pass. The days off include some of the bigger cities that need more than half a day to visit. The first day off on this trip is Barcelona. You can of course review the days off and decide which days to take off.
[Park Guell, Barcelona.]
15 – Avignon [France]
Today we cross back into France and continue using trains without reservation fees. The trip to Avignon is 7 hours with one change, arriving at 1.21pm. For long journeys I make sure my Kindle is charged the night before.
16 – Nice
Nice is 4 and a half hours away with a change of train in Marseille. You could spend a couple of hours in Marseille before continuing.
17 – Monaco [Monaco] – Genoa [Italy]
Today is a bonus country day with a stop in Monaco, which is less than 20 minutes away from Nice. This tiny city-state doesn’t have a railway, but the French railway passes through here and has a station (Monaco/Monte Carlo).
Genoa is a historic port city in northern Italy. It’s about 4 hours away with a 51 minute wait in Ventimiglia, so I recommend going to Monaco early in the day to be able to spend the afternoon in Genoa.
18 – Pisa – Florence
On the way to Florence you will pass through Pisa. You couldn’t possibly pass through here without at least paying a visit to the Leaning Tower. I’ve scheduled an hour and a half here, which is enough time for you to pretend to be pushing the tower back up in a photo.
Florence is 48 minutes from Pisa which will get you here at midday. There is much to see here, though the old city area is compact and walkable. You could leave Genoa earlier if you want to schedule more time.
19 – Rome
Rome is under 5 hours by regional train so you will arrive here before midday. There are faster InterCity options that require a reservation fee if you want to get here earlier.
20 – Rome – Vatican City [Vatican City]
Today is a scheduled day off, because Rome. They say that Rome wasn’t built in day, but what city is? What I do know is that Rome is a hard city to see with only one day (or one and a half in this trip). Still, you will be surprised what you can pack into a day.
While you are in Rome you definitely need to visit the Vatican City; the sovereign country with the city of Rome. The Vatican City also has its own train station, but sadly for us Eurail users, this is only used for freight and occasional ceremonial trips.
Visiting the Vatican will bring your country tally to 31 (the list of 30 are countries you will visit by train).
21 – Rimini
The seaside resort city of Rimini is 6 hours from Rome. There is a small old-town here, but after the festival of old buildings in Rome the beach might hold more appeal.
22 – Verona
Verona is 3 hours away with a change of train at Bologna. I would suggest leaving early enough to see a little bit of Bologna as well. Verona is famous for being the setting of Romeo and Juliet, and there is a famous statue of Juliet at the courtyard where the story is set.
[Verona as viewed from the top of the Lamberti tower.]
23 – Venice
Venice is 1 hour and 15 minutes from Verona. If there was a day you want to get up early to make the most of your time, then make it for Venice.
[Grand Canal, Venice.]
24 – Venice
Ahh Venice, a day wasn’t quite enough so lets add another.
25 – Innsbruck [Austria]
Today is a 6 hour train day with 2 changes. On these days you need to pay attention to which station to get off at. Fortunately the Eurail app makes selecting your train easy. With an early start you can be in Innsbruck by midday and enjoy the rest of the day in this city that is known as “the capital of the Alps.”
26 – Salzburg
Salzburg is the birthplace of Mozart and the setting of The Sound of Music, and it’s a popular city on the Eurail circuit.
27 – Munich [Germany]
Munich is 1hr41 from Salzburg, so with an early enough start you have a full day here.
28 – Lindau
Lindau is an island on Lake Constance and is a popular holiday destination in the region. The train station is on the island, and wandering around the old town you might wonder why more people don’t know about this place.
29 – Vaduz [Liechtenstein] – St. Gallen [Switzerland]
Today is the second bonus country day with a visit to Liechtenstein; the double-landlocked country wedged between Austria and Switzerland. Liechtenstein has no railway of its own but it has a railway pass through it. The main station of Schaan-Vaduz is the smallest (and possibly cutest) capital city station in Europe.
The station is about a half an hours walk to Vaduz, or you can get the local bus. If you want to be a complete tourist you can get an official passport stamp at the tourism office.
From Vaduz the next destination is St. Gallen in Switzerland. I’ve been here a few times now and it always surprises me how beautiful it is, yet isn’t as famous as other places in Switzerland.
[St Gallen Cathedral, Switzerland.]
30 – Zurich
Zurich is about an hour from St Gallen, depending on what train you get. These short train days make up for some of the longer days, so make the most of your time in this charming Swiss city.
31 – Luzern
About an hour away from Zurich is the picturesque city of Luzern. It’s lakeside setting and surrounding mountains are picture-postcard Switzerland.
32 – Bern
Bern is the capital of Switzerland (which I bet many people get wrong in quizzes). This is another easy travel day on the wonderful Swiss railways (SBB CFF FFS).
33 – Basel – Strasbourg [France]
Basel is in the corner of Switzerland that meets France and Germany. Basel train station is also the self-proclaimed world’s first international railway station. There is a platform with a frontier crossing to France, and the city itself is worthy of a wander before going to the next destination.
About an hour away is Strasbourg, which is the official seat of the European Parliament. It seems appropriate to visit one of the designated capital cities of Europe on this capital city tour. Before you arrive in Strasbourg you will see the Cathedral looming in the distance. It’s huge!
[Cathedral of Our Lady of Strasbourg, France.]
34 – Luxembourg City [Luxembourg]
Luxembourg City (or just Luxembourg) is the capital of Luxembourg and is less than 3 hours away from Strasbourg.
35 – Nancy [France] – Paris
Crossing back into France for the third time, today we are finally going to Paris! This itinerary of using regional trains includes a bonus stop at Nancy. You’ll have just over an hour here, so enough time to check out the town square before your next train.
With the regional train you will arrive in Paris at 13:53, giving you time to find your hotel and see the sunset on the Seine River.
[Pont Alexandre III at sunset, Paris.]
36 – Paris
You could visit Paris every year for the rest of your life and still not see everything, so if you have never been then consider this an introduction. On my last trip to Paris I only had a day, but I discovered that a day in Paris is better than no day in Paris.
[Eiffel Tower, Paris.]
37 – Amiens – Lille – Bruges [Belgium]
From France to Belgium there are TGV and Thalys high speed train services, both of which have reservation fees for Eurail pass holders. The best way to Belgium is by using regional trains.
From Paris catch the train to Amiens, where you can marvel at the cathedral.
The next stop is Lille, which is another charming French city which you would have totally missed if you got the fast train.
The last stop of the day is beautiful Bruges in Belgium.
38 – Ghent – Brussels
Half an hour from Bruges is Ghent, which I think is one of the great underrated cities of Europe.
From Ghent to Brussels is about half an hour as well, and there are regular services all day. With 2 hours in Ghent you can get to Brussels at 10:15 and spend the rest of the day here.
[Grand Place, Brussels.]
39 – Antwerp – Rotterdam [Netherlands]
Antwerp is 42 minutes from Brussels and is well worth making a stop in. The train station alone is an attraction in its own right.
[Antwerpen Centraal Station, Belgium.]
Travel in the Benelux countries (Belgium-Netherlands-Luxembourg) is easy work as there are so many cool cities in a small area. Just over an hour away from Antwerp is Rotterdam. In stark contrast to the old city centres of Belgium, central Rotterdam is mostly new, having been rebuilt after WWII.
40 – Utrecht – Amsterdam
Utrecht is one of those classic secondary cities that make Eurail such a good way to travel. Eurail have their offices in Utrecht, so they picked a good city to be based in.
With 2 hours in Utrecht, you should arrive in Amsterdam around 11 am. Amsterdam Centraal is another amazing train station in what is one of the great cities of Europe.
[Amsterdam Centraal, Amsterdam.]
41 – Amsterdam
Amsterdam requires a day to itself so this is another designated day off.
42 – Zwolle – Groningen
Most people outside of the Netherlands haven’t heard of Zwolle. There are cities like this all over Europe that have something interesting to see. In the case of Zwolle there is a medieval old town and one funky modern building.
[Museum de Fundatie, Zwolle.]
An hour from Zwolle is the city of Groningen which also has canals and charming old buildings, without the tourists.
43 – Bremen [Germany] – Hamburg
Crossing back into Germany again with a lunch break in the surprising city of Bremen.
Another industrial city of northern Germany – and another surprise – is Hamburg. This old port city has a lot of character, including the remarkable Speicherstadt warehouse district.
44 – Odense [Denmark]
Departing from the magnificent Hamburg Hauptbahnhof it’s time to travel north to Scandinavia. When planning your trip a good idea is to book hotels near the train station. I stayed near the station in Hamburg, which saved me half an hour in the morning, compared to if I had stayed in a different part of the city.
In keeping with our system of travelling 4-5 hours a day our next stop is in Odense, the third-largest city in Denmark. The city is famous for being the birthplace of Hans Christian Andersen, and there are many monuments commemorating his works.
[Odense Municipality Building, Denmark.]
45 – Copenhagen
From Odense to Copenhagen is just 1 hour and 38 minutes by train, so if you leave early enough you will have a full day in the beautiful capital of Denmark.
46 – Gothenburg [Sweden]
Denmark and Sweden are connected by the Øresund Bridge, one of the great bridges of Europe. Gothenburg is the second-largest city in Sweden with a scenic waterfront and large student population.
47 – Oslo [Norway]
4 hours north and it’s time to visit the capital of Norway; Oslo.
[Oslo Opera House, (Oslo).]
48 – Bergen
Bergen is a highlight for any visit to Norway. Make sure to get the first train of the day so you can spend the afternoon there.
[Bryggen, the old wharf of Bergen.]
49 – Oslo
For this itinerary I’ve tried to avoid backtracking whenever possible. In the case of Oslo-Bergen there is no other option. Fortunately the train from Oslo to Bergen is one of the most scenic rides in the world, so no complaints here for taking that route twice.
50 – Stockholm [Sweden]
Today is a long travel day with 2 changes over 10 and a half hours which will get you to Stockholm late in the afternoon. There is also a direct high speed train option that will get you get in half the time (with a reservation fee).
51 – Stockholm – Overnight Ferry
After a full day in Stockholm it’s time to get the ferry to Helsinki. There are no rail services between Sweden and Finland so we have to take the ferry here. You could fly, but that would not be in the spirit of this trip. Plus you would be missing out on seeing the stunning Stockholm Archipelago, which is made up of 30,000 islands.
52 – Turku [Finland] – Helsinki
The overnight ferry arrives in Turku at 7:00 and you will have a couple of hours to look around here.
The train to Helsinki is about 2 hours, and if you are travelling in the summer it will be light until late in the evening.
53 – Helsinki – Overnight Ferry
Not a train day but still a travel day. After spending the day in Helsinki the ferry back to Stockholm departs at 17:00.
[South Harbour, Helsinki.]
54 – Stockholm [Sweden]
For this itinerary I’ve scheduled another day in Stockholm, which is not a bad thing to spend another day in this city. The ferry arrives at 9.30am and the next destination is too far to do immediately after an overnight ferry.
55 – Malmo
The direct train to Malmo takes 5 hours and 25 minutes, and requires a reservation. I would take this otherwise you will spend all day trying to cross Sweden by regional trains and arrive late in Malmo.
56 – Luebeck [Germany]
Back into Germany again to the lovely city of Luebeck.
57 – Berlin
Berlin is 2 hours and 40 minutes from Luebeck and you would have worked out by now how ace German trains are.
58 – Berlin
There is much to see in this historic city so I think you should spend a day off here. It’s up to you of course, so consult the spreadsheet to see which city most tickles your fancy.
59 – Poznan [Poland]
5 hours and 2 changes of trains later brings you to Poznan in Poland. This another one of those second-tier cities that is not as well known as it should be.
60 – Krakow
Todays journey is a direct train to Krakow, taking 5 hours and 38 minutes. Trains in Poland require a reservation but they are free to Eurail pass holders. Book your ticket when you arrive in Poznan the day before.
61 – Warsaw – Overnight Train
Todays is a big travel day and you may decide to alter this part of the itinerary. Leaving Krakaw at 7:44 you arrive in Warsaw at 10:05. Instead of spending the night here I’ve picked the overnight train to Prague. You can leave your bag in a train station locker and spend the day in Warsaw, then get the train at 21:30 to Prague.
Reservation prices for the overnight train are 3.60 euros for a seat and 13.40 euros for a 6-bed couchette. That’s as cheap as staying in a hostel so it makes some sense to take advantage of the overnight sleeper train. Plus you are on a big Eurail adventure and these sleeper trains are dying out across the continent, so take them while they are still a thing.
62 – Prague [Czech Republic]
The overnight train from Warsaw arrives in Prague at 06:38, so you have a complete day in Prague.
[Prague, Czech Republic]
63 – Ceske Budejovice – Cesky Krumlov
Ceske Budejovice is about 3 hours from Prague and his famous for being the home of the real Budweiser. Change trains here for Ceske Budejovice, which run every 2 hours (so you may have time for a “real Bud”).
[Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic.]
Ceske Budejovice is one of those small European towns that resembles a fairytale town, and a place you would never get to by flying (yay trains!)
[Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic.]
64 – Vienna [Austria]
From Cesky Krumlov to Vienna is about 6 hours and 2 changes of trains so be sure to get the first train to make the most of your time in Vienna.
65 – Bratislava [Slovakia]
Todays journey is a mere 1 hour to Bratislava, making it the shortest distance between two capitals in Europe.
66 – Budapest [Hungary]
There are trains every two hours between Bratislava and Budapest, of which takes 2 hours and 42 minutes. This former capital of empire is one if the grandest cities in Europe.
67 – Budapest
I’ve made another executive decision for you and allocated a day off in Budapest, because half a day won’t do it justice. Budapest has two grand main stations, of which most international trains arrive at Keleti Station. The other is Nyugati station, which was built in the 1870’s by the Eiffel Company.
[Budapest-Nyugati pályaudvar (Western railway station).]
68 – Ljubljana [Slovenia]
There is one direct train from Budapest to Ljubljana every day, departing at 8:47 and arriving at 16:43.
69 – Ljubljana – Zagreb [Croatia]
Having arrived in Ljubljana late in the day I’ve scheduled a later departure of 14:45, getting you to Zagreb at 17:12. We will have to return to Zagreb again so just enjoy the evening here knowing that you will be back for more sightseeing.
[St Marks, Zagreb, Croatia.]
70 – Sarajevo [Bosnia-Herzegovina]
From here on as we enter the last weeks of the trip, travel in the Balkans requires an adherence to set timetables. Miss a train here and you’ll have to wait another day. From Zagreb there is one train a day to Bosnia-Herzegovina.
71 – Sarajevo
Having arrived in Sarajevo at 18:23 the night before, today is a day off to explore the city.
72 – Zagreb [Croatia]
Today is a back-track day as there is no service between Sarajevo and Belgrade. If you wanted to break the journey you can stop in Banja Luka, which is about half way between Sarajevo and Zagreb. That would mean sacrificing a travel day, so I would just make the most of your rail day. The train to Zagreb gets in at 19:42.
[Zagreb National Theater, Croatia.]
73 – Zagreb – Overnight Train
I think Zagreb is one of the underrated cities of Europe, so lucky for you that you get a full day here. Don’t go too crazy though because this is going to be a long day. Our next destination is by overnight train, and that doesn’t leave until 23:48.
74 – Belgrade [Serbia]
The overnight train from Zagreb arrives in Belgrade at 5:54 for what is just over 6 hours of travel. Not much time to get sleep, but at least it is direct.
[St Sava Church, Belgrade.]
75 – Belgrade – Overnight Train
Hopefully you had a good sleep in a real bed because there is another overnight train tonight. After spending the day in Belgrade your train to Montenegro departs at 21:10 and is a 10+ hour journey.
76 – Podgorica [Montenegro] – Bar
The overnight train from Belgrade arrives in the capital of Montenegro at 7.54. With limited train services, I would suggest spending 2 hours here before continuing to Bar on the next train.
The 9:55 from Podgorica gets to Bar at 10:49. Bar is a port city with an old town and – apparently – the oldest olive tree in the world.
[Old Bar, Montenegro.]
77 – Belgrade [Serbia]
At 10 hours and 53 minutes, today’s journey from Bar to Belgrade is a long day. This return leg starts at 9am so you can enjoy the scenery this time around.
[Hotel Moscow in Belgrade.]
78 – Timisoara [Romania]
The train from Belgrade to Timisoara takes about 5 hours with a change at Vrsac. Check at Belgrade station as the online timetables are always broken.
79 – Sibiu
Romania is a big country so there are some long travel days here. Get the direct train to Sibiu to make the most of your time.
80 – Fagaras – Brasov
Leave Sibiu at 7:27 and you will get some time to check out Fagaras.
Places like Brasov make you glad to be Eurailing. It’s one of those places that you might not have otherwise visited, but you are so glad you did once you go. By now you might start feeling a little anxious as you realise that your pass is coming to an end soon.
81 – Bucharest
From Brasov to Bucharest is a leisurely 3 and a half hours via direct train. If you catch the 6:15 you will be in Bucharest by 10 AM, giving you a productive day in the capital of Romania.
[Bucharest Peoples House, Romania.]
82 – Bucharest – Overnight Train
The next train doesn’t leave until 16:25 so you have most of the day in Bucharest.
83 – Sofia [Bulgaria]
The overnight train from Bucharest arrives in Sofia at 05:41, so you have the whole day ahead of you to explore the capital of Bulgaria.
[Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, Sofia, Bulgaria.]
84 – Thessaloniki [Greece]
The train from Sofia to Thessaloniki departs at 15:20, so you have another half a day in Sofia before getting on the train. This trip takes 7 hours, getting into Thessaloniki at 22:22. Not the most ideal time but it is the only option.
[White Tower – Thessaloniki, Greece.]
85 – Athens
Having arrived in Thessaloniki late the night before you have half a day here before the next train to Athens. Trains take about 5 hours and leave every 4 hours, so pick which time is suitable for you. Note that when you arrive in Athens you should sort out times and reservations for your next train day, as the Greek railways website is not very informative.
[Acropolis, Athens, Greece.]
86 – Athens
Today is a full day in Athens as you arrived late the day before. It pays to prepare your sightseeing while you are on the train. Read your guidebook or cache some travel pages to read on your laptop or mobile device.
[Syntagma Square, Athens, Greece.]
87 – Sofia [Bulgaria]
I hope you enjoyed your day off from the rails because today is a long one. Perhaps you are itching to get back on the rails after missing a day, so you will make up for it with a 12+ hour day back to Sofia. On these long travel days make sure you have some good travel books.
88 – Plovdiv
Plovdiv is 3 to 4 hours from Sofia, depending on the train you get. You have 2 days here so travel at your leisure today.
89 – Plovdiv – Overnight Train
After a full day of exploring Plovdiv tonight is the penultimate ride on this three-month journey 🙁
[Plovdiv ancient theatre]
90 – Istanbul [Turkey]
The overnight train from Bulgaria arrives in Istanbul at 7:50 in the morning. The station is located near the tourist area so you soon be at your hotel and ready for a whole day of exploring one of the greatest cities in the world.
***Note: there have been track works here and a replacement bus might be in operation.***
[Blue Mosque, Istanbul – Turkey]
91 – Istanbul
Istanbul is definitely a city you want to spend another day in. Being so close to finishing you might be tempted to finish here but then you would not have visited every capital. It’s your call.
[Galata, Istanbul, Turkey.]
92 – Ankara
Today is the last day, and to complete the mission of visiting every capital city we get the train to Ankara – the capital of Turkey.
I’ve tried to space out travel times so you aren’t spending all day on the train. The ideal travel day is about 4 hours, though there are some 1 hour days and a few 12+ hour days.
Regional routes are listed over routes that require reservations whenever possible. On the days I have opted for a supplement are days when the regional trains are unreasonably long and you would lose a day of sightseeing.
There are a few night trains in the itinerary, either to save time or because it was the only option. The overnight trains are a classic European travel experience but they are gradually being phased out, so best to experience them before they are gone. The reservation fee for the sleeper options often works out as cheap as a hostel. For example, the hotel train from Lisbon to Madrid costs 29 Euro for a bed in a 3-bed sleep, so that counts as your night’s accommodation cost.
There were some routings that would have saved some time and reservation fees, but they came at a high discomfort cost. For example, one routing suggested changing trains at a bleak junction city at 3 am with a 2-hour wait. So there are no routes like that.
Overall there are 92 travel days with 10 days off. I have added the days off at suggested cities, but you can move them around to your own taste. You will need the day off in Athens and Sarajevo because you arrive late at night, and you should include the day off in Paris, being the biggest city in the Eurozone, and because of its general magnificence.
This schedule was put together with summer dates as some of the ferries don’t run on winter timetables. In the summer the days are long so you will be surprised how much you can get done in the day. The early starts are nice in the summer as it’s already broad daylight by 5 am in some places.
Route thoughts and improvements
This itinerary is a guide to show that it’s possible to visit every capital city within a reasonable time frame. I have yet to take a 3-month trip but I have used a one month pass at a similar travel tempo and I finished the month wishing I could continue.
I would personally do this 30 countries in 3 months as a travel challenge, but if you want to make the most value out of your pass I would make a few changes:
– I would skip Ireland and visit it on a separate trip (this will save a ferry ride).
– If you aren’t concerned about the capital cities then finish in Istanbul.
– I would also pass on the Balkan peninsula (Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Greece), as there are long backtracks and you don’t see the best of the country by rail.
Share your Eurail route (achieved or planned)
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