With departures year-round, almost daily and mostly hauled by some of the most powerful German steam locomotives ever built which date back to the 1950s, the narrow gauge Harz Mountains Railway (Harzer Schmalspurbahnen) in the Harz Mountains is a delight for rail enthusiasts who want to experience a true nostalgic steam affair, over 140km of track and 400 bridges.
The undisputed highlight of the network is the journey to the top of the Brocken Mountain, the highest peak in the Harz Mountains at 1,141m above sea level. As the train winds its way upward on a continuous 1 in 30 gradient through the forest on its one-metre-wide narrow gauge track, rocking gently and leaving a flurry of steam in its wake, there’s a real wistful sense of a time long since passed. In the colder times of the year, you can appreciate the effect of the steam in the cold air even more keenly; the vintage carriages’ open-air sections are the perfect place to do just that.
The top of the mountain is often shrouded in fog, giving it a mystical quality, but on the days when the weather is clear and bright; the views are endless and incredibly beautiful, whether summer or winter.
Rest assured, whenever you visit, this is the stuff of real-life fairytale!
The whole area itself is very picturesque and there are several delightful towns to stay in and routes to enjoy – all depending on how much time you have to ride the rails. Perhaps stay in pretty Wernigerode and visit its castle perched on the hilltop, or lodge in charming Quedlinberg on the Selke Valley Railway – there is also an option to stay in slightly less eye-catching Nordhausen with a visit to the Mittelbau-Dora and Buchenwald Memorials.
We can help guide you on how to best suit your holiday requirements, so give our Travel Specialists a call and we’ll “track down” the best options for you!
Call our team of helpful specialists to build this train into your dream holiday on 0800 038 1664.
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