Start – Ho Chi Minh City; End – Hanoi; Departs daily; Distance – 1072 miles (1726km); Duration – two days
Some railways rattle through historic cities; others swoosh beside spectacular coastline. A few have an epic history, and one or two are remarkable for the colourful characters on board. The Reunification Express line, also known as the North–South Railway, fulfils all these criteria.
One of Southeast Asia’s best-loved railways, its fortunes have waxed and waned with those of the country it traverses. Travelling more than a thousand miles from Ho Chi Minh City in the south to Hanoi in the north, there is no more atmospheric way to haul into Vietnam’s twin metropolises. And there’s no better way of exploring all the glories in between.