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Tag: ZomerZonderVliegen

IC Hamburg – Köln & ICE Köln – Brussel

Train route from Hamburg to Brussels, over Köln

My first leg of the journey was on an IC train. I’m not sure if it’s typical for this type, but it felt quite a bit older: lots of fake wood, actual curtains, no airconditioning… Next time I’ll try to make sure I only book ICEs!

And like it was on purpose, to rub in the fact that I had to cancel a large part of my trip, there was a ÖBB Nightjet waiting in Köln station!

The last leg was a proper ICE again, and even in seat 61! Perfect temperature, comfy seat, loads of space, and Komfort Check-in again! No clue how they actually check it, but every time I used it, they’ve always passed me by during ticket control.

Well, that was it, I’m almost back home! Hopefully next trip will be a bit longer again…

ICE Berlin – Hamburg

Train route from Berlin to Hamburg

This Sunday morning I was in Berlin Hbf again. No, I wasn’t there to catch a train home yet, but one to Hamburg first. I was a bit early—getting up and checking out of your hotel can be so much quicker when you’re travelling alone ?—but luckily I found a nice coffee place just outside the station, Tucano Coffee.

Now it’s just a short ride to Hamburg, so I’ll be arriving there soon!

Off to Berlin!

Wait, what? Straight to Berlin? What happened to Wien and Budapest? Well… because Hungary suddenly closed its borders for tourists, I had to change my plans a bit. The sleeper train adventure has been put on hold for now, and on this trip I will only visit Berlin and Hamburg, meaning I’m going straight from Brussels to Berlin. I’m still keeping it classy though: first class tickets all the way!

As usual, I had to change trains in Köln, giving me the opportunity to quickly grab something to eat. Don’t be afraid to ask them to put your order in your own reusable packaging, even abroad! No time to grab my usual coffee in the coffee bar just outside the station, so a train coffee had to do… Really nice of Deutsche Bahn to serve it in proper cups, at your seat!

Now just a couple more hours of podcast listening—I was running behind a bit anyway—and enjoying the view, and I’ll be back in Berlin!

Viaggio in Italia: Trains ✓


You might have noticed we don’t really like to fly. For our trips to London, a train has always been the most logical choice: faster and—when booked well in advance—cheaper than flying. For our trip to other destinations in the UK, Berlin, and Prague, the price was still competitive most of the time, but journeys like that take a bit longer already. Our Italy trip in late spring, however, is taking the train craze to the next level.

No fewer than ten different trains will take us to and through Italy! And you can take ‘ten different trains’ almost literally: one Thello sleeper, one Trenitalia Regionale Veloce, one Trenitalia InterCity, one Frecciabianca, one Frecciarossa, one Italo train, one Trenitalia EuroCity, one TGV Lyria, and two Thalyses!

The trick of keeping a trip like this affordable, is booking each of those journeys as soon as they become available, taking advantage of all kinds of Super Economy and Mini fares. Considering the different booking windows the rail operators use, this means it actually took several weeks to get it all sorted!

The only setback was the direct Milan-Paris TGV we planned on booking: it never appeared! We finally found out that specific TGV wouldn’t run this spring due to railroad works, so we’ll be making a little detour over Zürich. Apparently there is a very good beer shop in the station, so we don’t really mind… ?

Our B&Bs are all booked as well, so we’re now all set for our ten day Viaggio in Italia!