Breathtaking landscapes, winding curves and lots of beauty: discover the best train trips to take in South America

That South America concentrates some of the most beautiful landscapes on the planet, is nothing new. So, if you want to look at these spectacular scenarios from another angle, without haste and with a few doses of adrenaline, how about including a train trip in your itinerary?

Icy mountains, deserts, historic sites, vineyards and bridges at over 4,000 meters of altitude are certainly some places that can be admired along a unforgettable train trip across South America.

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So, get to know 9 of them now to include in your next trip to the South American continent.

Train travel in South America

Train Crucero – Ecuador

south america train travel

Train travel in South America. Photo: Disclosure

Passing through beautiful Ecuadorian scenery, the Tren Crucero travels between Quito and Guayaquil or vice versa. The 4-day trip features a café-bar and a panoramic lounge. Surprisingly, it allows the traveler to admire from snowy mountains to the imposing Cotopaxi, the third largest active volcano in the world. In addition, the train also makes it possible to get closer to the country's culture that is revealed amidst the landscapes, gastronomy and handicrafts.

End of the World Train – Argentina


Train travel in South America. Photo: Transmundi operator

The End of the World Train is, in fact, one of Ushuaia's must-see attractions. It follows a route that starts at the End of the World Station, starts in the city of Buenos Aires and ends in the extreme south of the country, in Tierra del Fuego. Undoubtedly, the route passes through some of the most beautiful places in Argentina, such as fields, forests and snow scenes, which change according to the seasons.

Belmond Andean Explorer – Peru


Train travel in South America. Photo: Publicity/Belmond

The Belmond Andean Explorer reveals to the passenger some of the most incredible natural and historical beauties of Peru. Undeniably considered as the first train with sleeping cabins in South America, the route goes from Cusco, capital of the ancient Inca Empire, to the white city, Arequipa. Along the way, you can admire places like Lake Titicaca, the highest in the world. Also, get to know the Colca Canyon, one of the most impressive and deepest cliffs in the world.

Train to the Clouds – Argentina


Train travel in South America. Photo: Disclosure

The Train to the Clouds (Tren a las Nubes) is not named for nothing, as it is one of the highest in the world and runs through the winding zigzags of the Andes Mountains. The 200-kilometer journey (one-way) leaves Salta, in northern Argentina, passes through Viaducto La Polvorilla, which is 4200 meters above sea level, to reach the Quebrada del Toro and reach the Puna. Despite the butterflies in the stomach, the experience provides one of the most impressive views in the world, facing tunnels, bridges and, of course, many curves.

Serra do Mar Train – Brazil


Train ride in South America. Photo: Disclosure

The Serra Verde Express train ride, which departs from Curitiba towards the historic city of Morretes, cuts over 150 kilometers through the Serra do Mar of Paraná, passing through beautiful natural settings. The train crosses 30 bridges and 14 tunnels dug in the mountains. In addition, there are special routes such as a sunset tour, an extra stop in the town of Antonina and a wine tasting experience.

Expreso del Sur – Bolivia


Train in South America, Expresso del Sur, Bolivia. Photo: Andean Railway Company

The Expreso del Sur, also known as Wara Wara del Sur, offers a direct line between the cities of Oruro and Villazon, in Bolivia, 655 kilometers apart. Along the way, beautiful landscapes merge with great accommodations, with executive options, a dining car, among other amenities. The total journey takes thirteen hours and passes through places where it is possible to stop along the way, such as Uyuni, where the incredible Salar de Uyuni salt desert is located, as well as other points of interest.

Tourist Train de la Sabana – Colombia

Train Travel in South America, Tourist Train de la Sabana, Bolivia. Photo: Disclosure

The Trem Turístico de la Sabana is one of the best ways to see the sights of Bogotá, Colombia. Aboard a classic model, which works on weekends, it is possible to visit the cities of Zipaquira and Cajica. In addition, the route includes an additional tour to one of the most impressive places in the country, the Salt Cathedral of Zipaquira, a church built inside a salt mine at 2,600 meters above sea level.

Sabores del Valle – Chile

Sabores del Valle, Chile. Photo

Without a doubt, this is an unforgettable train trip through South America for anyone who appreciates good wine. On the way from Santiago, Chile, the proposal is to take visitors to the Colchagua Valley Wine Route, one of the most notable in the country. With typical live music and many tastings, the tour also includes guided visits to vineyards in the region. In addition, it has the charming city of Santa Cruz and the Colchagua Museum, which presents more than 7 thousand pieces that portray the history of the country.

Death Train – Bolivia

Train travel in South America. Photo: Publicity / EASTERN RAILWAY

Known as one of the cheapest means of transport to reach Bolivia, the Death Train departs from Puerto Quijarro, on the border with Mato Grosso do Sul, to the Bolivian city of Santa Cruz de la Sierra. Despite the name that indicates a dangerous route, the route is very easy – the nickname came from the last century, when the route was used to transport people affected by yellow fever. The Death Train, whose railroad is over 600 km long, is suitable for people who are detached from luxury, as the journey can be tiring and slow. However, it is also a very authentic experience.

Read too:

» Train travel: see the 15 most spectacular itineraries in the world
» Tourist train will connect Belo Horizonte to Instituto Inhotim
» Mexico builds train that will tour the Rota Maya
» Train tour visit the world's most famous tequila factory

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Outras dicas úteis

Encontre informações úteis sobre os best destinations do mundo, com guias de viagens especializados sobre diferentes places to visit in Brazil e no exterior. São milhares de travel tips com sugestões de onde ir na sua viagem, recomendação de hotels, notícias atualizadas e muito mais.

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