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1
This video reviews the train journey from Pietermaritzburg, to Durban in South Africa in November 2017. Captions will give you further information and tips about this very scenic journey across the Valley of a 1000 Hills in the KwaZulu-natal region.
This train is run by the Passenger Rail Authority of South Africa: PRASA.

https://youtu.be/dQMvSVxDuqU
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Travel plans, routes and timetables / Re: Albania - Macedonia - Greece
« Last post by warlord on January 08, 2018, 10:06:34 pm »
  Ok thanks, I am still waiting for flights to either do Serbia/Montenegro or as I asked last year before going to Ukraine/Moldova, being the Serbia-Slovenia.

  And yes I knew the train issue with this trip wouldn't be an option as compared to the Serbia/Montenegro (though would need buses there as well).

  With this trip I like to keep it as simple as possible, but I'm thinking the furgons would be very similar to the Marshrutka I took in Moldova correct?  Not the most comfortable at all, but if there is an option of a direct one that might work.  I'd rather not try to do what you did and do bus and taxi and then another bus as I want to keep it simple and not have to deal with getting ripped off by Taxi drivers when I don't know the language.  I will check on local buses via tourist agencies like you mentioned.

  At least the other parts of the trip seem decent enough with the bus or fugons.  The ferry is fine to Corfu I think in price if I'm to stay a day or two rather than just a day trip.  And as you said returning up the coast back to Tirana seems easy.

  I'll come back after I check the flight options with one of the trips and then get more details if I have questions.

Ideas for my upcoming trip (Arrive/Depart city - Arrive/Depart city)
Albania - Macedonia - Greece (Tirana or maybe Corfu)
Serbia - Montenegro (Belgrade - Podgorcia or Dubrovnik)
Serbia - Slovenia (Belgrade - Ljubliana) - As you already helped with and gave me the details on this alread


3
Travel plans, routes and timetables / Re: Albania - Macedonia - Greece
« Last post by tUt on January 07, 2018, 07:49:56 pm »
As you can probably guess by looking at the rail network map of the region, rail option is almost entirely unavailable in this case. Trains in Albania are very slow and with foreigners it's mainly for hardcore rail fans ))) However buses & minibuses (so-called "furgons") entirely make up for absence of the proper rail transport. On the major routes buses/furgons are frequent and relatively cheap, the later will depart without strict timetable, but during the day (morning/afternoon) you won't wait for long, especially since you will be traveling rather touristic routes

Tirana-Ohrid: personally done this trip using Tirana-Pogradec-Tushemisht-Sveti Naum-Ohrid route (from Pogradec to the border in Tushemisht it was taxi, while on the Macedonia side bus). Probably you can take a taxi all the way from Pogradec to Ohrid, but it will cost at least 30 euro vs. 5 with taxi+bus option). Heard that there is also a ferry line during the season, but it will make sense to check whether it's actually running closer to the start of the season. Totally alternative option is to use travel agency & shuttle bus (directly from Tirana)
Ohrid-Sarandë: probably the trickiest journey. Option a) would be to come back to Elbasan/Tirana and travel the usual way with bus/furgon, while option b) would be to go Pogradec-Korçë-Sarandë (it seems there are some buses available)
Sarandë-Corfu: not as cheap as transport elsewhere in Albania, however very easy & simple, e.g. see https://ionianseaways.com/timetable
Sarandë-Shkallnur: again, super easy journey using bus/furgon going to Durres (it would be 5 or so hours trip), but if you have time you can also take a train from Vlore

Another option if flight prices allow it would maybe having Corfu - Sarandë - Ohrid - Shkallnur - Tirana or something if I can fly out of there with a good deal.
Imho, not a much of a difference, so you can easily just book cheaper flight option and then simply reverse your journeys     
4
Travel plans, routes and timetables / Albania - Macedonia - Greece
« Last post by warlord on January 04, 2018, 03:01:32 pm »
    Looking at another option for my 2 week trip in May this year, I was also looking at trying to do Tirana - Ohrid - Sarandë (for the beaches) - Corfu (maybe for a night or two) - Shkallnur (Gollum Beach) and back to Tirana.

  My big thing is how is transportation along this possible route with frequency and reliability and time travel times to get this in for 2 weeks?  Another option if flight prices allow it would maybe having Corfu - Sarandë - Ohrid - Shkallnur - Tirana or something if I can fly out of there with a good deal.

  Just was hearing more and more about Albania's coast and the fact many people seem to take a side trip to Macedonia well.  Other idea are also welcome as usual as I often will take those suggestions...
5
Hi,

I thought about more than once about travelling on the Bergensbanen. As BA was to drop Bergen as a destination, I decided to try it in Oct 2017. Bergen is well known for its wet weather and I wasn't sure I would be lucky so late in the season. Well, I ended up enjoying a glorious weather while in Bergen and then on my way to Oslo.

As I booked the ticket well in advance, the price was rather competitive even with the first class supplement.

I was so impressed by this journey that I even created a video about it

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lZVHXbBSASU

You'll enjoy some great views but travel tips too throughout the video. I hope you enjoy.
6
Travel plans, routes and timetables / Re: Belgrade-Zagreb-Ljubliana
« Last post by warlord on November 20, 2017, 05:07:49 pm »
Yes I still plan on doing this trip possibly this coming Spring...
7
Travel plans, routes and timetables / Re: Belgrade-Zagreb-Ljubliana
« Last post by LonnieLup on November 20, 2017, 03:47:10 pm »
Great stuff tUt. I'm going to use this for sure. Thanks mate.
8
Travel plans, routes and timetables / Re: Venice to Zermatt by Train
« Last post by tUt on October 26, 2017, 12:48:58 pm »
... and are going with the risky move of making the 8:23am train from Milano Centrale, arriving at 10:16am in Brig.
Just for informational purposes make sure you take a look at Milan Central station plan - http://admin.grandistazioni.eu/assets/milano/images/floors/mi_-_piano_binari.jpg . This way you will save some transfer time when in Milan, since you'll already have some idea which direction to go. Also, in case you didn't purchase the Milan-Brig ticket yet, there is a legal trick to make it roughly 1/3 cheaper. TrenItalia's 32 euro Smart2 offer for the needed train on the 24th is more or less ok price for this part of Europe, however why not to save when you have a chance to use the same train for less money?

We also need to go from Zermatt to Geneva on December 26th, but once again, I think I need to wait until it's 30 days or less to book that trip, and we are (thankfully!) not on a time crunch with that one.
Probably your best option here is SBB (Swiss Railways) offer called SuperSaver ticket - https://www.sbb.ch/en/travelcards-and-tickets/tickets-for-switzerland/supersaver-tickets.html (=basically a limited number of discounted tickets sold for the specific connection, unlike the standard price ticket valid for the route, meaning not tied to the particular departure). It's quite easy to catch SuperSaver tickets on the SBB website, especially if don't need to travel on the exact connection, but can move your departure +/-

I just need to wait to book the 10:27am train to Zermatt (as it's not open for booking on the SBB site yet), and then done!
Btw, SuperSaver tickets are also available on Brig-Zermatt connection, however here it's a bit trickier to catch, but if you have time for the "hunt" 30 days before the journey, then why not to save money here as well? Swiss railways are expensive, so saving those 50% is a good deal
9
Travel plans, routes and timetables / Re: Venice to Zermatt by Train
« Last post by kelseykaylove on October 25, 2017, 08:55:14 am »
You're amazing! Okay, we have now booked the 5:40am - 8:12am from Venezia Santa Lucia to Milano Centrale, and are going with the risky move of making the 8:23am train from Milano Centrale, arriving at 10:16am in Brig. From there, I just need to wait to book the 10:27am train to Zermatt (as it's not open for booking on the SBB site yet), and then done!

Glorious. We also need to go from Zermatt to Geneva on December 26th, but once again, I think I need to wait until it's 30 days or less to book that trip, and we are (thankfully!) not on a time crunch with that one.

Your help has been above and beyond - THANK YOU!
10
Travel plans, routes and timetables / Re: Venice to Zermatt by Train
« Last post by tUt on October 25, 2017, 06:55:35 am »
However, underneath the timetables it says "runs not every day, 25. Oct until 9. Dec 2017" so I'm not sure if it's going to be running on the day we need.
That's a usual note regarding trains in the time period around schedule change. Actually you can already see & book for Dec.24 your first leg, i.e. Venice-Milan, since it's a high-speed train (unlike local/regional trains, e.g. one to Domodossola, for which timetable usually appears later, especially in countries like Italy) ---> http://www.trenitalia.com/tcom-en



That's the official website of the Italian railways (TrenItalia) and as you can see yourself, there still a chance to book relatively cheap discounted tickets starting from 19,9 euro


It also looks like there's an 11:27am train from Brig to Zermatt, putting us in Zermatt at 12:51pm. Perfect! One final question, though - is 10 minutes enough time to get from the platform we're dropped off at in Brig to the other train to Zermatt? I'm not sure how large the station is, so I don't know if that's a feasible turnaround time, even if we run.
Totally enough, the station in Brig isn't very big + Switzerland is one of those countries, where most of trains are "connected", meaning that if one is a bit late, then the other is waiting, so that transit passengers can safely make their change.

As an additional note, it seems like when starting from Venice with 5:40am train you have a chance to be in Brig already 10:16 (which means in Zermatt at 11:51am). It can be done if you don't wait in Milan for regional 2144 to Domodossola (departs 8:29), but catch faster Eurocity #32 Milan-Geneva (via Brig) departing 8:23. It's a bit risky time wise, since Milan central station is rather big one, however winning a entire hour is also a lucrative option.
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