We use the Italian State Railway for the majority of our travels and urge our clients to do the same, relying on auto rentals only when public transport or walking paths or bicycles are not available. Trains are central to the Italian concept of private transport, and by and large are exceptionally pleasant, comfortable and nearly always on time.
For those who have not taken the Italian train recently, speed is amazing. Travel time is always substantially less than travel by automobile — on smooth track and with nearly always something scenic to admire.
When on December 8 we go from Rome to Trento/Rovereto, nearly on the Austrian border, we will be on the train for less than five hours. Trains are not expensive, and first class is spacious and quiet and quite plush. Travelers interested in examining the carbon footprint of their train trip will enjoy Ecopassenger where you can study, from five perspectives, the impact of a journey and compare it to the equivalent trip by car or air.
One of the delights of Italian train travel is the extraordinary variety that you see outside of your window. In the shortest of periods, landscape, architecture, agriculture, even the shapes of plots of farmland change continuously in a fascinatingly fluctuating portrait of many Italys. On our trip, we will leave aqueducts behind, bypass Lazio’s disorderly farmhouses, soon to see Umbrian square farms that shortly will mutate into stout Tuscan ones with green shutters. Grapes give way to olives and olives to cypresses and the landscape then turns to vineyards. Geography opens and folds and contours and flattens. We sip a good Italian State Railway espresso. What a joy to enjoy the show from a comfortable Italian train !
We will have breakfast in Rome and lunch in Rovereto, and the natural world we will find on arrival is a wide glacial valley of astonishingly high mountains. No olives or cypresses or grapes are here, but instead beeches and larches and firs !
Let us plan a trip like ours’ — all by train — for you soon. Please see Insider’s Italy for details on our travel planning services.