The Golden Eagle Danube Express

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Deluxe train journeys with British flair, comfort and service!

Unbelievable journeys through South Eastern Europe.


Rail cruising is a fantastic way to absorb the rich culture and cinematic landscape of the country. Our exclusive rail journeys through Russia, Europe, Central Asia and China, combine first-class customer service with a romantic exploration of the world’s most remarkable sites and a room with a view that constantly changes; offering a unique and memorable exploration of the places we visit.

Enjoy the delights of an on-train breakfast each morning – a wide selection of fruit, cereals, orange juice and cold plates are available from our bountiful buffet. Alternatively, enjoy a cooked breakfast bought to your table by our waiting staff, all complemented by steaming hot tea and coffee.

For lunch and dinner, you will enjoy fine food, great wines and attentive service in the welcoming atmosphere of the restaurant car. We offer a culinary experience that reflects the very essence of the countries we travel through, as well as international cuisine. Vegetarian and other dietary options are also available.

All our meals at lunch and dinner are complemented by an excellent choice of wines from around the world, personally selected by our Company Founder, Tim Littler, along with bottled water, beer and soft drinks.

Meals onboard are a relaxed affair as the restaurant cars can accommodate all our guests in a single sitting. Throughout the journey there is an informal dress code, so you can enjoy our culinary experiences in convivial and relaxed surroundings and with our open-seating policy you can dine wherever, and with whomever, you please.

The Five 2019 Itineraries

Balkan Odyssey

Taking in an amazing seven countries (Hungary-Romania-Bulgaria-Serbia-Croatia-Slovenia-Italy) in just 10 days, discover the fascinating cities and landscapes of Transylvania and the Balkans on this trip between Budapest and Venice.

Castles of Transylvania

Absorb the vibrant cultures, ancient castles and spectacular scenery of Transylvania on this new rail cruise between Istanbul and Budapest. Over seven days, passengers will delve into the history surrounding Romania’s most infamous historical figure, Vlad the Impaler – or as he is more commonly known Count Dracula.

They’ll also enjoy a walking tour of the beautifully preserved town of Sighisoara where Vlad was born, discover Sibiu’s Evangelic Cathedral where his son was buried after his assassination, and visit Bran Castle – the setting made famous by Bram Stoker’s novel as the residence of the vampire count. The Transylvanian adventure begins in Istanbul with a night at the 5-star Pera Palace Hotel where Agatha Christie famously wrote ‘Murder on the Orient Express’.

From here guests have easy access to the city’s must-see attractions, before stepping aboard the Golden Eagle Danube Express, their home for the next four nights. After winding westwards, and climbing the Shipka Pass into Bulgaria, the hotel-train arrives in the magnificently set Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria’s ancient capital, where guests visit the well-preserved medieval Tsarevets Hill and Castle.

Following an overnight ascent of the Carpathian Mountains, guests are rewarded the next morning with views of dramatic landscapes as the train weaves its way across the Romanian border.

Here, explore the stunning Peles Castle at Sinaia; the mysterious Bran Castle at Brasov where a gala dinner will be held inside the castle walls; the World Heritage site of Sighisoara; and the 13th-century Council Tower at Sibiu. Moving into Hungary, further highlights ahead of arrival in Budapest include a visit to Kecskemét and witnessing a spectacular ‘Puszta’ horse show in Lajosmizse.

Grand Alpine Express

Journeying from Budapest to Venice, expect dramatic alpine backdrops, beautiful lakes and some of the most scenic railways in the world on this journey across Central Europe. Highlights include Vienna, Innsbruck, Zurich, Lake Como, Lake Garda, Milan, Verona, Trieste, Lake Bled and Ljubljana. 

New Year in Vienna

Celebrate New Year in style with winter wonderland scenery and musical celebrations. From Budapest, loop into Austria to visit Graz and Vienna, before continuing to Prague and Kosice. The highlight in a New Year’s Eve gala dinner at City Hall with a performance by the renowned Wiener Hofball Orchestra. 

Balkan Explorer

This passage between Venice and Istanbul takes in the verdant landscapes and turquoise coastlines of the Balkan nations. Meandering through Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Serbia, Macedonia, Greece, Bulgaria and Turkey, the sites just keep on coming.