Whoever coined the phrase green is the new black’ probably didn’t think the world would take it as swapping plastic straws to paper ones, physical restaurant menus eliminated in favour for smartphone QR codes, and your morning latte poured into a reusable mug brought from home. But every little helps, right? Sustainability and being more eco-friendly has become engrained in our daily lives, with many people adopting this new routine into several different aspects, including travel and tourism. From staying in eco-friendly hotels to buying from local businesses, small changes here and there can make a big impact, and perhaps one of the biggest is reducing carbon emissions by ditching duty-free and using public transport in place of a plane. Europe is one of the best well-connected continents in the world, with just a matter of hours separating some of the most popular holiday spots, making it a breeze to head down to the train station, and explore another country before you know it. No long security queues, no luggage restrictions, complimentary Wi-Fi, extra legroom… you really can’t go wrong. This spring, discover some of Europe’s best routes to take a multi-city adventure like no other as you train to travel with Choice Hotels. 

Birmingham to London

The second-largest city in the UK has a huge spirit to match, with no shortage of things to do and places to explore. The north of the country tends to have more of a chill in the air so spring is a great time of year to visit, with the warm sunshine bouncing off the Gas Street canal and the vibe in Birmingham just as bright as the sun. Visit the trendy Broad Street and Brindleyplace, home to quirky cafés and bars before getting a retail therapy fix in The Jewellery Quarter. When your time in Birmingham has come to an end, head to New Street Station to journey to London Euston, taking roughly 90 minutes directly into the heart of the beautiful capital city. London has a constant aura of magic and mystery, with something new found around every corner, a global melting pot of cuisines, a thriving nightlife scene, cultural events and museums to boot… it’s an experience you’ll never forget.

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London to Paris 

From the Big Smoke to the City of Love, London and Paris have been a much-adored duo amongst travellers for many years, and these two European superpowers are just hours apart. After all the excitement to be had in London, it’ll be difficult to tear yourself away from the UK capital but make your way to St. Pancras International to catch the Eurostar to Paris’ Gare du Nord. The journey takes just under two hours and 30 minutes, and the train runs as frequently as once every hour. The Eurostar is the perfect way to travel in comfort, style and flair, setting you up for the perfect spring rendezvous in Paris whether you’re visiting to indulge in delectable French fare, admire the iconic monuments awash in the warm spring light, or simply immerse yourself in the Parisian way of life with romantic walks along the Seine and stops off at cafés for a croissant and a chocolat chaud.

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Paris to Bordeaux 

Who says your French affair has to stop with Paris? It may be hard to say goodbye to the capital but beautiful Bordeaux awaits you with a plethora of adventures just a train ride away. Paris Montparnasse will take you to Bordeaux St-Jean in just two hours, dropping you off just half a mile away from the heart of the city so your break can begin almost immediately. Known as the world’s premier wine region, immerse yourself fully in the French countryside, spend days exploring the endless vineyards while sampling the namesake’s full-bodied Bordeaux alongside deliciously paired with meats and cheeses. If you can tear yourself away from the scarlet elixir long enough, don’t miss out on some of Bordeaux’s top sights including the world-famous Musée des Beaux Arts, home to some of Picasso’s most famous works alongside several paintings from influential French, Flemish and Dutch artists.

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Berlin to Dresden

Not much can compare to the beauty of Berlin in springtime, and visitors who take a trip to the German capital for the first time often find themselves returning again and again. Known as Europe’s capital of cool, Berlin is the perfect blend of modern and historical, boasting fascinating museums and cultural landmarks, underground attractions and eccentric nightlife. Once you tick the likes of Brandenburg Gate, Checkpoint Charlie and the Eastside Gallery off your list, head off the beaten track and discover quirky bars and clubs, find up-and-coming chefs at pop-up restaurants and simply stroll around non-touristy areas in the loveliness of spring. Next stop – Dresden. Just a two hour train journey from Berlin Central Station will immerse you in the heart of Dresden, another multicultural and vibrant city that if it wasn’t on your radar before, it certainly will be now. The imposing Dresden Castle is a must-see alongside the Royal Palace which houses a detailed collection of royal treasures and breathtaking décor that will have you wandering around the grounds for hours. Oh, and nothing says springtime like being surrounded by nature so head to Großer Garten, the green heart of the city with gorgeous gardens, elegant baroque buildings and even a small zoo on-site. 

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Dresden to Prague

The German adventures may have come to an end but let the Czech Republic rendezvous begin! Grab a train from Dresden Central Station that will take you to Prague Main Station in just two and a half hours, running roughly every two hours. Offering a beguiling mix of old-world charm and sleek sophistication, Prague is a city of unparalleled charm and is home to magnificent architectural sights, such as the stunning Charles Bridge and majestic Prague castle. The Old Town is Prague’s Las Vegas Strip, the main event that simply can’t be missed thanks to its winding streets filled with sweet-smelling bakeries, cobbled lanes that you can aimlessly get lost in, and an atmosphere full of magic that truly can’t be compared. Explore all the markets in the city for a touch of retail therapy, and don’t forget to follow our trusty guide on how to eat like a local in Prague for all the insight on the best places to satisfy your hunger. 

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Prague to Vienna

Who needs airports when you can reach Vienna from Prague in a matter of hours? Comfortable and cost-effective, there are 11 departures each day from Prague Main Station to Breclev where another connecting train will take you to Vienna’s city centre. With its historical Baroque and Rococo architecture, along with some beautiful early 20th-century Art Nouveau buildings, and a smattering of cutting-edge contemporary art and design, Vienna is a city of dramatic extremes and wonderful contradictions. Drink it all in as you wander down its grand streets and sashay through its old palaces.

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