SEE SPAIN BY TRAIN
As we begin the New Year, the ‘flight shame’ movement is one of the biggest travel trends governing holidaymakers travel plans in 2020. Travellers are now looking for alternative means of transport with the railways providing the most convenient alternative to flying. Throughout 2020, a number of new train routes are launching across Spain meaning that visitors can experience all the history, culture, gastronomy and breathtaking landscapes from across the county guilt-free.
The Costa Verde Express is a brand new rail journey traversing northern Spain, otherwise known as Green Spain for its lush and verdant landscapes, from Bilbao to Gijón (or vice versa). RENFE’s new service is expected to launch in May 2020 offers a unique six-day, five-night programme aboard the luxurious and historic Costa Verde Express staying in a Gran Clase Room. The new launch maintains the philosophy of RENFE’s Luxury Tourist Trains highlighting the gastronomy, landscapes and various excursions available on board. Stops along the route include Bilbao, Laredo, Santoña, Santander, Santillana del Mar, Llanes, Covadonga, Oviedo and Gijón. Expect luxury accommodation, meals, gala dinner and scheduled tours with expert guides.
Easter 2020 will also see the arrival of another new service from RENFE. A range of low-cost, high-speed AVE trains will begin operations between Madrid and Barcelona travelling at speeds of up to 350km/h (186mph). The announcement of one of the most modern train fleets in Europe comes as an attempt to get Spaniards off the roads and onto the train tracks. Despite coaches being the primary choice for young travellers in Spain, the AVE trains are expected to provide them with a more luxurious and efficient way to get around the country while ultimately reducing the tourism sectors overall carbon footprint. Thanks to the low prices, more than 25% cheaper than the current service, the high-speed AVE trains are expected to attract over a million passengers in the first year. Tickets are now on sale for the under-three-hour service between Spain’s two biggest cities and the inaugural journey taking place in April 2020.
Travellers in Barcelona then have the option of continuing on to Valencia in just two and a half hours with RENFE's Euromed Barcelona – Valencia service that launched on 13 January 2020. Barcelona and Valencia’s Camp de Tarragona station are now connected by the high-speed rail with trains travelling at around 250km/h (155mph) providing a faster service by 35-45 minutes. The service also features a ‘Coche de Silencio’ (Silent Carriage) at no added cost to the passenger.