Luxury Train Journey in Northern Spain:


El Transcantábrico Gran Lujo Train

Travelling on the El Transcantábrico train is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Imagine spending a week in a five-star hotel, except this one operates on a rail. The historic carriages will take you back to the 20th-century, as most of the decorations and interiors are reminiscent of that bygone era.

For eight days, passengers will travel back in time on a journey across Northern Spain. Once inside the train, you will enjoy scenic views along the coast and experience fine dining meals on-board or in top-quality restaurants across the region, all included in the ticket fare.

The train travels from the Basque Country to Galicia, connecting San Sebastián to Santiago de Compostela. Below is everything you need to know about the El Transcantábrico train, including the itinerary and price details.



Suite Gran Lujo (Grand Luxury Suite)

The El Transcantábrico train features 14 Deluxe Suites. These are very spacious and include a bedroom, a living room (with a sofa-bed) and a bathroom with a hydromassage shower or steam sauna. You can choose a large double bed or go for the two twin beds. In either case, you’ll find a handful of amenities, like a wardrobe, safe, desk and minibar. To keep you entertained, there’s also a TV, telephone, radio and a computer with free internet available. Don’t worry about getting a peaceful sleep, as the train stops each night so passengers can rest comfortably. This also gives you the chance of hopping off to dine at a local restaurant and enjoy the area’s nightlife.



Lounge Cars

The train’s lounges are set in original Pullman cars from 1923. They were all renovated and decorated to fit this luxurious train. These feature a glass-panoramic room and common areas where breakfast (à la carte), lunch, and dinner are served daily. There’s also a tea room and a bar (open until past midnight) where passengers can often enjoy parties and live music performances. Customer service is available here 24 hours a day.



El Transcantábrico Train Route Itinerary

8 Days / 7 Nights (San Sebastián - Santiago de Compostela)


Day 1

San Sebastián - Carranza

The journey starts with a reception in San Sebastián around noon, in a hotel chosen in advance by the staff. You’ll have a guided tour around this lively Basque city and then sit down for lunch. Afterwards, a luxury bus will take you to Bilbao, where the El Transcantábrico awaits. Your trip begins with a welcome drink, served by the staff, as you board the train. It’s now time to enjoy your first dinner as the coach approaches Carranza, where you’ll spend the night.

San Sebastián, Spain
Your trip begins with a welcome drink, served by the staff, as you board the train
Enjoy your first dinner on board of the Transcantábrico Gran Lujo Train, North Spain


Day 2

Carranza - Bilbao - Santander

Enjoy your first à la carte or buffet breakfast on the train. The El Transcantábrico will return to Bilbao, so you can see the city properly. A guided tour is included, with tickets to the renowned Guggenheim museum. Return to the train for lunch as you set off to Santander. Once you arrive at Cantabria’s capital, you’ll have free time to explore the area. After dinner, you can head to the El Gran Casino de Santander, as the entry ticket is included.

The Guggenheim museum, Bilbao
Santander, Spain
After dinner, you can head to the El Gran Casino de Santander, as the entry ticket is included


Day 3

Santander - Cabezón de la Sal

The train journey continues to Unquera. From there, you’ll get on the luxury coach to Potes, travelling across the Pass of La Hermida. Have a walk around this small village and then relax at the Balneario de La Hermida thermal baths. In the afternoon, you’ll visit the El Capricho in Comillas, a 19th-century palace designed by Gaudí. Head back to the train for dinner and an overnight stay in Cabezón de la Sal.

El Capricho in Comillas, Spain
Dinner at the Transcantábrico Gran Lujo Train restaurant


Day 4

Cabezón de la Sal - Santillana del Mar - Arriondas

Start the day visiting the beautifully preserved town of Santillana del Mar and its medieval centre. Afterwards, head to Altamira’s Neocueva, a museum featuring cave paintings from the Upper Palaeolithic era. Return to the train after lunch and prepare to enter the Asturian region. Dinner is served on board as you arrive at Arriondas, where you’ll spend the night.

Santillana del Mar, medieval village in Cantabria, Spain
Santillana del Mar, medieval village in Cantabria, Spain
Altamira Museum Cave, Cantabria, Spain, Europe


Day 5

Picos de Europa - Llanes - Oviedo - Candás

After a delicious breakfast, it’s time to visit the Picos de Europa National Park. A bus will leave you in the area for a visit to Lake Enol and the Covadonga Sanctuary. Return to the El Transcantábrico for lunch as you head to Oviedo, the capital of Asturias. You’ll have time to visit the city at your pace and admire its pre-Romanesque buildings. Make sure to stop by San Julián de los Prados, a magnificent 9th-century church. Go back to the train for dinner and overnight stay in Candás.

Lake Enol, Asturias, Spain
Sanctuary of Covadonga, Asturias, Spain
Oviedo, the capital of Asturias, Spain


Day 6

Candás - Avilés - Gijón - Luarca

The day begins with a trip to Avilés, a preserved millenary town with an incredible historic centre. Then, back to the train until you reach Gijón, a city with privileged views over the Cantabrian Sea and plenty of cultural events. After visiting Gijón, you’ll head back to the train and travel along the Asturias coast towards the “white village” of Luarca. Here you’ll join a guided tour to learn more about this picturesque fishing village. Dinner is served still in Luarca, where you’ll also spend the night.


Day 7

Luarca - Ribadeo - Viveiro

As the sun rises, the train takes you to Ribadeo, a Galician village close to the Asturias border. The journey continues along the coast by bus to the Praia As Catedrais, one of the world’s most incredible beaches. Then, a panoramic tour of Ribadeo awaits you with a lunch stop. Return to the train afterwards to continue your journey to Viveiro. Once you arrive at the town, there will be a guided tour and then you’ll have free time to explore it as you wish. Dinner is served on board as the train stays for the night in Viveiro.

Praia As Catedrais, Ribadeo, Spain
Viveiro, Lugo, Spain


Day 8

Viveiro - Santiago de Compostela

It’s your last breakfast on board, as the train calmly takes you to Ferrol, where a bus will pick you up and drive you to Santiago de Compostela. Surrounded by historical buildings, this city is famous for being the final pilgrimage stop of the Camino de Santiago. Stroll around Santiago and don’t forget to visit the city’s striking cathedral. The trip ends afterwards, at the Reyes Católicos Parador, around 1 p.m.

Santiago de Compostela, Spain
The Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, Spain
The Reyes Católicos Parador, Santiago de Compostela, Spain


El Transcantábrico Train Cost

2021 season prices

Accommodation:    8 days and 7 nights
Price per person in Suite Gran Lujo (Grand Luxury Suite):    5.500 €
Individual add-on:    2.500 €
Triple Suite Gran Lujo (Grand Luxury Triple Suite) Add-on (*):    2.500 €

(*) Child or adult


El Transcantábrico Train Gran Lujo: what’s included on your trip

  • Staying at the Suite Gran Lujo (Grand Luxury Suite).
  • Welcome drink and snack.
  • Luggage-collecting service
  • Toilet bag, including toiletries and slippers.
  • Free non-alcoholic beverages in the suite.
  • À la carte and buffet breakfasts.
  • Lunches and dinners are served either on the train or in high-quality local restaurants. These fine-dining meals include wine, water, soft drinks and coffee.
  • Onboard activities: live music and performances, parties in the bar, dancing and much more.
  • Tickets to monuments, museums and shows.
  • Excursions and scheduled visits.
  • Special Dinner: end-of-trip party.


Your trip also includes rides on a luxury bus, used to facilitate tours and excursions. You can count on complimentary newspapers and magazines every day so you can keep up with the latest news. There’s also a multilingual guide to accompany you during the trip and helpful crew members, including the expedition chief, guide, waiters, cooks and technical staff.

You can rest during the evenings as the train stops to give guests the ultimate comfort, leaving for the next stop early in the morning. Every station also provides security service. Extra charges include only laundry and bar orders.

You’ll also have the chance to enjoy your trip before it starts, with a 50% discount on Renfe trains—one to the route’s departure stations and another from the final stop.




Costa Verde Express Train

Previously known as the El Transcantábrico Clasico, the Costa Verde Express train takes you across the Spanish “Green Coast”, passing through the Basque Country, Cantabria, Asturias and Galicia—all on a luxury train, with exquisite service.

The journey is similar to the El Transcantábrico Gran Lujo but shorter as it starts in Bilbao instead of San Sebastián. This six-day trip also includes gourmet meals inside spacious lounges that will take you back to the golden age of train travel. All the coaches are connected, so you can walk from the front to the back as you please.

Below is everything you need to know about the Costa Verde Express train, including the itinerary and price details.



Grand Class Suite

A classy and cosy room where you can rest at night. The suite features wood furnishings and comes with a double bed, a wardrobe, luggage storage, desk, minibar and safe. Other amenities include a separate air-conditioning regulator allowing you to set the temperature you want in your room. There’s also a private bathroom, equipped with a hydromassage shower or steam sauna, and a hairdryer—plus toiletries and welcome items.



Lounge Cars

The lounge cars on this train are spacious and perfect for relaxing or chatting with friends or family. It’s in these areas that breakfast, lunch and dinner are served every day. There’s a chef on board, responsible for preparing all the delicious meals. The bar opens early in the morning and only closes after midnight. Throughout the journey, passengers can enjoy live music, performances and parties.



Costa Verde Express Train Itinerary

6 Days / 5 Nights (Bilbao - Santiago de Compostela)


Day 1

Bilbao - Santander

Passengers will meet at 10 a.m. for the reception at the Concordia-Bilbao station. The crew will then welcome you aboard and show you the room you’ll be staying in. Before leaving Bilbao, you’ll enjoy a panoramic tour of the city and a visit to the Guggenheim museum. Food will be served on board after the activities, as the train leaves for Santander. You can have a stroll around the city during the afternoon in your free time. Dinner will be served at a top restaurant, outside the train. You can then head to the Casino del Sardinero before boarding, as the night is spent in Santander.


Day 2

Santander - Santilanna - Arriondas

Enjoy your first breakfast on board as the train arrives at Cabezón de la Sal. A bus will pick you up there to take you to Santillana del Mar. Once there, make sure to visit the medieval centre and the Cave of Altamira. Have lunch in town and return to the train, as the journey will now enter the Asturias region. The Costa Verde Express Train will stop at Ribadesella for a visit. You’ll then have dinner on board and spend the night in Arriondas.

Santillana del Mar, Spain
Santillana del Mar, Spain
Ribadesella village, Spain


Day 3

Picos de Europa - Oviedo - Candás

Enter the bus awaiting after breakfast. You’ll head to Cangas de Onís, the first capital of the Kingdom of Asturias. The bus will then take you to Picos de Europa to visit Lake Enol and the Covadonga Sanctuary. After that, it’s back to the train to continue the journey to Candás, while you eat dinner. When in Avilés, you can leave for quality free time before heading back for dinner and overnight in Candás.

Lake Ercina, one of the famous lakes of Covadonga, Asturias , Spain
Santuario de Covadonga, Asturias, Covadonga, Asturias, Spain


Day 4

Candás - Oviedo - Gijón - Luarca

The day starts with a visit to Oviedo, the capital of Asturias. You’ll then head to Gijón, a vibrant seaside city, where you can enjoy your free time and have lunch. The train will then depart to Luarca for a visit, dinner and overnight stay.

Oviedo, Spain
Gijón, Spain
Luarca village, Spain


Day 5

Luarca - Ribadeo - Viveiro

The train arrives at Ribadeo around breakfast. It’s the first Galician stop on the route, and you’ll have plenty of time to wander around. Enjoy your free time and lunch in the town and head back to the train afterwards, as the trip continues to Viveiro. Hop off for a tour of the city and then return to the train for dinner and overnight stay.

Ribadeo village, Spain
Playa las Catedrales (Catedrais beach) in Ribadeo Galicia, Lugo, Spain
Enjoy your dinner on board


Day 6

Viveiro - Santiago de Compostela

It’s the last day on board. You’ll arrive at Ferrol during breakfast, where a bus awaits you. It’s time to say goodbye to the crew and hop on the bus to Santiago de Compostela. Visit the pilgrimage city and enjoy lunch at the Reyes Católicos Parador, where the trip officially ends around 4 p.m.

Santiago de Compostela, Spain
The Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, Spain
The Reyes Católicos Parador, Santiago de Compostela, Spain


Costa Verde Express Train Cost 

Accommodation:    6 days and 5 nights
Price per person in Gran Clase Suite:    3.200 €
Individual add-on:    1.200€


Costa Verde Express Train: what’s included on your trip

  • Staying in the Grand Class Suite with a large double bed.
  • Welcome drink and snack.
  • Gift Pack with slippers and toilet bag.
  • Free mineral water.
  • All breakfasts.
  • Lunches and dinners are served either on the train or in high-quality restaurants outside. All meals include wine, water, soft drinks and coffee.
  • Onboard activities: live music and performances, parties in the bar, dancing and much more.
  • Tickets to monuments, museums, and shows.
  • Excursions and scheduled visits.
  • Special Dinner: end-of-trip gala party.


The trip also includes all rides on a luxury bus, facilitating some tours and excursions. Newspapers and magazines are available every day, as well as a multilingual guide. Crew members (expedition chief, guide, waiters, cooks and technical staff) can also help you whenever you need and every station offers a security service. Extra charges include only laundry and bar service.

The train stops in the evening and remains that way through the night—so you can have a proper rest and sleep—leaving in the morning only.

You’ll also have the chance to enjoy your trip before it even starts, with a 50% discount on Renfe trains—one to the route’s departure stations and another from the final stop.


Return to Northern Spain Itinerary