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Hidden Gems of the North

It won’t surprise you that at Interrail we love to travel. In fact, we're lucky enough to call travelling our daily work, and we aim to discover all that Europe has to offer. We asked our team for hidden gems that shouldn't be missed when exploring the North of Europe.

Hidden gems map top smaller

1. Fort William, Scotland

 

The Scottish Highlands are known for their impressive nature, with wild rivers, big lakes and tall mountains. In the surroundings of Fort William, you’ll find exactly that, and more.

 

Take a local bus (15 minutes) to Glencoe, and follow the river Coe in between the mountains by foot or by bike. You’ll be able to gaze up to the peaks of the Three Sisters, or Bidean nam Bian, as the mountain is actually called. Their height will make you feel incredibly small.

 

Also don't forget some of the Harry Potter related sights. Take the Jacobite Steam Train from Fort William station that crosses the famous Glenfinnan Viaduct. Or, hike to the place where Hagrid’s hut was filmed, up high on the mountain, and enjoy the gorgeous views.

 

How to get there

Train from Glasgow: 4 hours, 30 euros

 

Tip: if you found out too late about the Harry Potter steam train, take a regional train instead! A roundtrip ticket to Mallaig costs around £13,50, takes approximately 1,5 hours and takes you through beautiful landscapes. 

 

2. Delft, The Netherlands

 

The picturesque city of Delft is known for its Delftware Pottery (Delfts Blauw). Despite actually originating in Belgium, the charming blue and white earthenware features floral designs and natural landscapes, often sold in souvenir stores. For a unique experience, head to Aardewerkfabriek De Candelaer to watch the Delft Blauw painters at work.

 

Art lovers will enjoy the Renaissance-style City Hall serves as a reminder of Delft’s history with art, as Delft was also home to painter Johannes Vermeer.

 

Enjoy a coffee break at Uit De Kunst, located on Oude Delft 140 and right next to an old telephone booth where a different artist’s work is featured in every month.

 

How To Get There

Train from Amsterdam: 1 hour

From Rotterdam: 20 minutes 

 3. Berchtesgaden, Germany

 

Nestled in the Bavarian Alps, Berchtesgaden is a charming mountain town with activities for every type of traveller.

 

Learn about how Berchtesgaden gained its wealth by sliding down the depths of the Salt Mine for an exclusive tour. Alternatively, hop aboard a rowboat on the stunning Königsee, Germany's cleanest lake and take in the wonderous panoramic views.

 

History buffs can visit The Eagles Nest, a mountaintop teahouse used by Adolf Hitler during World War II to entertain foreign dignitaries. The estate has since been renovated into a charming restaurant and beer garden with breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains.

 

How to get there

Train from Munich: 2 hours 30 minutes

 

 

4. Malmo, Sweden

 

Malmo is a cosmopolitan hub for train travellers and is perhaps Sweden’s most social and culturally diverse city. Its modern upbeat city center has many hidden gems when it comes to eateries. One such spot is the Malmo Saluhall, a food hall serving everything from fresh plaice from the island of Ven, to hand-pulled ‘Pink Head’ noodles.

 

Art aficionados should not miss Moderna Museet, a smaller yet just as awe-inspiring version of Stockholm's world-class present-day modern art gallery.

 

For a different kind of escape, visit ‘Sherlocked’. The Sherlock Holmes themed escape room will take you on an immersive journey through gritty Victorian London. If you manage to escape, you’re invited to have a cocktail or two in a beautifully moody speakeasy, fitting of the whole experience.

 

How to get there

Train from Gothenburg: 2 hours 30 minutes

From Copenhagen: 36 minutes

 

5. Gdańsk, Poland

 

Located on the Baltic coast, Gdańsk is absolutely rich in history. Walk through the cobbled streets of the Old Town by booking a walking tour to see astonishing highlights such as Neptune's Fountain, a historic fountain positioned right outside of the breathtaking Artus Court.

 

To experience some of the hidden gems in this port city, plan a trip to the Cemetery of Lost Cemeteries; a memorial site dedicated to those whose resting places were ruined in World War II. You could also try to locate The Three Boar Heads during your stay, a peculiar emblem hidden in an alleyway that's actually the coat of arms of a medieval family.

 

How to get there

Train from Warsaw: 3 hours

 

Tip: Our Pass holders get a discount on walking tours in Gdansk through Get Your Guide

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