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Blog Railway Tours Tips

Calabria: the Silana Railway on the list of tourist railways

It is in Calabria one of the most beautiful historical railways in Italy. Due to its particular cultural and scenic value , the Silana Railway, along the entire stretch from Cosenza-San Giovanni in Fiore, has been included in the list of tourist railways .

To make it known is Legambiente Sila, which enthusiastically welcomes the unanimous approval, at first reading, to the Chamber of Deputies, the bill that aims to establish tourist railways through the reuse of disused or underway lines disposal, located in areas of particular natural or archaeological value.
An important result for Calabria, reached by the Committee for the Safeguard of the Sila Railway , through the popular petition that has collected more than 4 thousand signatures.

The Committee asked the Region to restore the historic narrow-gauge railway linking the city of Cosenza to its silan hinterland, reaching the famous mountain resorts, including Camigliatello Silano. The aim of the signature collection was to avoid the dismantling of the railway infrastructure and re-launch the train as a means of transport to connect the silane center to the Calabrian capital.

Calabria: the Silana Railway included in the list of tourist railways
“For us, the Sila Train is not a nostalgia operation – reads a note from the Committee for the Safeguarding of the Sila Railway – but a serious investment on sustainable mobility that concretely supports the socio-economic development of the territory and reduces the risks and isolation. “

The Cosenza – San Giovanni in Fiore section is one of the most outstanding examples of railway engineering in Italy.
Starting from the Calabrian capital, the line, located in the valley of the Crati at 232 meters above sea level, reaches the peak at San Nicola Silvana Mansio which, at an altitude of 1405 m, is the railway roof of Italy . Then, it returns to San Giovanni in Fiore, 1049 meters. To overcome the difference in height of over 1000 meters, the railway made use of engineering solutions at the limit of the possibilities of the time.

Blog Railway Tours Tips

Steam trains: the magic of traveling back in time

Traveling with a steam train is a fascinating experience. How many of us have dreamed of doing it? Because the image of the train that puffs are linked scenes of great passions consumed on elegant carriages, breathtaking spy-story, intricate yellow and mysterious disappearances.

But even if we were not accompanied by books and films, the thought of this slow-travel would be enough to make us dream: a journey in which the admiration of the landscape is the master. Also in Italy it is possible to travel on steam locomotives and the routes practiced by this means are particularly beautiful and interesting. Let’s see together which routes it is, from North to South.

In Lombardy the Blue Train  runs in the territory of the Basso Sebino, on the border between Bergamo and Brescia , connecting Palazzolo sull’Oglioto Paratico and Sarnico on Lake Iseo. The railway section, closed for thirty years, was reopened in 1994, to be finally transformed into a historic tourist railway.

The locomotives that serve it are composed of beautiful vintage carriages, with all the charm of the original furnishings of the ’30s. Also, since the route runs along the river Oglio, you can combine the train path also a boat trip on Lake Iseo.

Also in Lombardy, to Milan , you can travel along the railway of the Sesia Valley , a historic is that for nearly 130 years connects the capital of Lombardy in Varallo Sesia . The charm of this historic train trip is expanded by the beauty of the landscape: along the river Sesia, the view is dominated by the beautiful complex of Monte Rosa .

Going down to Tuscany, another splendid journey on a steam train is the one that covers the route from  Asciano  to Monte Antico, a fraction of Civitella Paganico . The Val D’Orcia Railway , closed to the public service in 1994, has been revitalized thanks to the particular beauty of the territory it crosses: from the Crete Senesi to the foot of Mount Amiata.

Today these natural wonders can be admired traveling on steam locomotives and centoporte carriages, which owe their name to the structure that recalls the style of the stagecoaches, with many doors on the sides to favor the rapid ascent and descent of the many passengers that crowded them.

Passing from Abruzzo to Molise, we find the railway line that connects Sulmona to Isernia that, already by the name with which it is commonly known, is rightly included among the most spectacular routes: it is called Trans-Siberian in Italy because, crossing the Abruzzi, the panorama that can be admired for most of the journey is that of the snowy peaks of the Apennines.