The Trans-Siberian Railway is one of the world's most famous. Photo credit: Ville-Veikko MastomÃ¤ki
Special to amNewYork
Prefer trains to planes? Heres a guide to some of the greatest train journeys in the world.
The Deccan Odyssey of India proves that sometimes the journey is more important than the destination.
The luxury train departs from Mumbai and seven days later arrives there again. During the week you get introduced to the grand forts and palaces of Marathas, ancient churches of Goa, and the Hindu and Buddhist caves of Ellora.
Its 21 coaches are decorated with shades of gold and facilities include an Ayurvedic massage centre, a beauty parlor and a spa.
Tickets start at $260 for a triple occupancy berth and go up to $750 for a private presidential suite.Trans-Siberian Railway
The Trans-Siberian Railway spans more than a third of the globe and covers more than 5,700 miles.
During its seven-day journey from Moscow to the Pacific Ocean, it passes 87 towns and 10 time zones.
In Eastern Siberia the train splits into three directions: The Trans-Mongolian route continues to Beijing via Mongolia, the Trans-Manchurian goes to Beijing through Siberia and Chinese Manchuria, and the Trans-Siberian continues to Vladivostok.
Tickets can be as cheap as $300 if you travel independently, or as much as $3,000 with a tour.
Known as the moving five-star hotel, the Blue Train covers a 27-hour, 1,000-mile journey across South Africa, from Cape Town to Pretoria.
Life on board is luxurious, with elegant lounges, high-end suites, fine dining and boutiques. During low season (all but Sept. 1-Nov. 15), a double occupancy luxury suite costs $975 and a deluxe suite about $900.
One of the most famous trains in the world, the original 1883 Orient Express went from Paris to Istanbul.
Since then, the name has referred to many different trains traveling a variety of European routes, with the common denominator being the extravagant service.
To experience the glory of days gone by, take the Venice Simplon Orient Express from London to Venice. The two-day, one-night journey takes you through the Kentish countryside and the Swiss Alps. One-way tickets start at $3,120.
Take the ultimate road trip with the historical Canadian. The trip from Toronto to Vancouver takes three days and four nights and has been running since 1955.
Known as the first and only all-stainless steel dome stream-liner in Canada, the trains coaches are still the originals.
Stops include Winnipeg, Edmonton, Jasper and Vancouver. The route boasts scenic lake land, the Western plains of the Prairies and some great views of the Canadian Rockies.
Tickets start at $350 and go up to $2,500.
The California Zephyrs journey runs from Chicago to San Francisco and ventures through the Rockies and Sierra Nevada. It is one of Amtraks most scenic routes and, at 53 hours, one of its longest.
It is an afforfable option for crossing the country: one-ways start at $180. A private room is $630 extra.
The sheer size of Australia is sure to awe, whether viewed on board the legendary Ghan from Darwin to Adelaide or the Indian Pacific from Sydney to Perth.
The Ghan takes you through the 1,850 miles of Australias arid red center in 48 hours.
The highlight of the 2,700-mile journey of the Indian Pacific is crossing the Nullarbor Plain, the longest straight stretch of railroad in the world (297 miles). Beautiful sunsets, mesmerizing red dirt and the odd kangaroo dot the landscape over three days.
Tickets for the Ghan are $460 in the Red Kangaroo section and $1,280 in the Gold Kangaroo and for the Indian Pacific, $450 and $1,260, respectively.