History of Railroads in Peru

History of Railroads in Peru

The history of the Peruvian railways is linked to the history of the country, it is unbreakable. The trains marked time and contributed in a definitive way to its consolidation in the good and bad times. In the war with Chile, more than 500 km of lines were destroyed, out of a total of 1,500 in 1877. This length was reached again only in 1910.

Since the
railroads of Peru have had a period of splendor in the past, in this article the main facts that affected the development and construction of the railroads of Peru are related. Basadre calls the history of the railways, especially in the height of its construction, that is, during the second half of the nineteenth century and the first of the twentieth the "unfortunate history" of the same. Basadre also says: "The railways for the most part did not end up within the stipulated deadlines, and raised complex problems around their financing, or administration or termination." It is no coincidence that most of the railroads included here no longer work. From the small ones to the biggest, passing through the chimerical ones to the Marañón, the Ucayali and the Madre de Dios, they have their history and their anecdotes. One could talk about railway archeology . Since the beginning of the first railway line back in 1851, there is much to be said until the rail network reached more than 4,500 kilometers.

There were presidents who were very concerned to provide
Peru with a railway system according to the needs and progress that the country required. Ramón Castilla , of course the initiator, then José Balta , José Pardo , Manuel Pardo , Nicolás de Piérola Villena and Augusto Leguía are among the leaders who did most for this item. It can be said that railways were built in Peru until 1930. From that date, its development stopped and its decline began.

The Railroads of the North of Peru

Railroad Tumbes-Puerto Pizarro (Disappeared)
This could mean earthquakes

This short railway, Tumbes - Puerto Pizarro , also called Tumbes- Palizada , owned by the State, had an area of ​​just 11 kilometers and 0.75 m of track, was born by law 697 of 1907 that also included a new port . In 1933 a branch line was authorized to Zarumilla but it did not materialize. It began to be built in 1908 and was put into service in 1909. It always had the problem, like many others, of working at a loss given the little passage and load it carried. It stopped operating in 1949.

Piura's Oil Railways (Missing)

Petrol Railways of Piura . The railways Talara - Negritos - Talara of 93 km and 0.75 of track and Lobitos - El Tablazo - El Alto of 34 km and 0.75 of gauge, served the needs of the oil companies of the area. In addition, the International Petroleum Co. IPC had a total of 160 km of lines, also with 0.75 m for its operations.

Paita-Sullana-Piura Railway (Missing)

Ferrocarril Paita - Sullana - Piura. His studies date back to 1869. It was begun in 1872 by Federico Blume who designed the first Peruvian submarines. It was inaugurated coinciding with the war with Chile on April 5, 1879, until Sullana. It was partly destroyed by the Chileans. In 1875 it was arrived at La Huaca, in 1876 until Viviate, in 1879 as we have said to Sullana and finally in 1887 to Piura. As of 1929 it was operated by the Peruvian Corporation. They tried to modernize the service with 5 HUNSLET diesel locomotives and an articulated WALKER autovagon, but in spite of that, it stopped circulating in 1959. Its line was completed in 1962. It had a gauge of 1,435 m and a length of 105 km. The town said that in Piura there were only two stations: the summer and the train.

Piura-Catacaos Railway (Gone)

Railroad Piura - Catacaos . Privately owned with 10 km and 0.75 m gauge operated between 1889 and 1937.

Railroad Bayóvar -Reventazón (Disappeared)

Built in Piura by the State in 1903, for the purpose of mining (sulfur). The Compañía Azufrera Sechura was a concessionaire. It ran next to the Illescas hill. It had 46 km of route and was of 1 m gauge. It stopped operating in 1920.

Pimentel-Hacienda Pomalca Railway (Missing)

This private railway of 43 km and a narrow line of 0.914 m, ran from the port of Pimentel to the Pomalca and Pucalá farms, connecting several plantations. It began in 1916. You can still see in Pimentel the pier without activity and the narrow gauge road where once it operated. It is a very long pier but in terrible conditions. This railroad stopped working in October of 1983.

Pimentel Railway - Chiclayo - Lambayeque (Disappeared)

Line started in 1873 and in 1897 reached Vista Alegre of 24 km in length and 0.914 m of track. It stopped circulating completely in 1975. In recent years it was reduced in length and only served by the pier area of ​​Pimentel.

Etén Railway - Chiclayo (Missing)

A broad gauge line (1,435 m), which ran from Puerto Eten to Chiclayo with a branch to Ferreñafe and another from Chiclayo to Pátapo that passed through the Pomalca and Tumán haciendas with a total length of 67 km. It started operations in 1871, the oldest in the north. It worked until 1965. For a few more years, it only continued to operate the section from Puerto Etén station to the pier. There is a good collection of oxidized steam locomotives and a MAN diesel autovagon of this particular train belonging to the Railway Company and Pier of Puerto Eten. By law 15974, its fixed and rolling material was delivered to the municipalities of Chiclayo, Ferreñafe, Pimentel and Monsefú. There are some old passenger cars and an autovagón all in very bad conditions. They are in charge of the municipality but they are the responsibility of the INC.

Eten Railway - Hacaltí Farm (Disappeared)

Eten was the terminus of another railroad that connected the port with Hacienda Cayaltí. It was 66 km long and had a trail of 0.60 m. It worked from 1904 to 1979. The line crossed the Panamericana Norte in the desert between the port and the hacienda. They acquire many BALDWIN steam locomotives from the Piura Oil Railways from second hand. He also had a 6-wheeled Plymouth diesel. In the station of Puerto Etén was connected with FC Etén - Chiclayo. There was a turntable for that FC of agriculture. Here the cargo was transshipped to this railroad that operated the pier of Etén.

Pacasmayo Railroad - Guadalupe - Chilete (Disappeared)

This railroad connected two departments La Libertad and Cajamarca. Originally designed to reach the city of Cajamarca, it only reached Chilete. It was built by Meiggs. It was owned by the State. Later it happened to be administered by the Peruvian Corporation. Despite being unfinished, it was one of the northernmost movement. Its construction began in 1871 by Ernesto Malinowsky who worked for Meiggs. It reached Chilete in 1908. It was 105 km long with a 26 km detour from San Pedro to Guadalupe. Its trail was 1,435 m wide. In order to lower the expenses of the passenger service, some WALKER autovagons were purchased (articulated units and simple units). He served until 1967. For a few more years he just continued to operate in the port area and its dock. Currently the Pacasmayo stationIt has been restored and transformed into a museum. In the back there are two locomotives on display. In Chilete on the other side of the route there is abandoned rolling stock and getting lost.

Puerto Chicama Railroad (Malabrigo) - Valle Chicama (Missing)

Railway network that served several sugar complexes of the Chicama River Valley as Casa Grande, Sausal, Rome, Chiclín, Chicama and others. Owned by the Casa Grande Agricultural Society, which would later be transformed into Empresa Agrícola Chicama. It was administered by Gildemeister and Co. Of narrow gauge 0.914 m and an extension of 194 km including detours and other services. It started in 1915 from Malabrigo. Through the Ascope-Trujillo railway, it was interconnected to this city. It had up to 16 locomotives, including 5 diesel (1 Plymouth 30 ton and 4 Ruhrtaler), 3 passenger cars and the surprising amount of 974 freight cars. The latest figures we have found show that in 1950 it transported a total of eleven million tons. It was reducing its operation over time and replaced by other means. The agrarian reform of 1969 affected the Chicama complex and the railroad finally disappeared. From 1969 to 2013 he only served in the area of ​​Puerto de Chicama and its dock. With the wreck destruction that service was recently suspended,

Internal Railroad of the Hacienda Cartavio (Disappeared)

It served exclusively to the Cartavio hacienda in La Libertad, north of Trujillo. It was owned by a North American company, with a route of 26 km and a trail of 0.914 m. It started in 1906. It was connected to the Chicama valley railway. It came to have 7 locomotives and 200 cars

Ascope Railway - Trujillo - Salaverry (Disappeared)

It began to operate around 1875, connecting Ascope with Trujillo and the port of Salaverry to the south of the same, with a total of 76 km of extension, narrow gauge 0.914 m. It belonged initially to the State. It had a Trujillo-Laredo-Galindo-Menocucho branch of 53 km open in 1896 and another of Ascope to Chocope of 24 km of 1876. It was built by Don Pedro Telmo Larrañaga. They acquired two WALKER articulated self-wagons. Its line was abandoned progressively until 1966. It was administered by the Peruvian. Trujillo also had a railroad that went to Huanchaco of 14 km open in 1914 and closed in 1920. There was also a Huanchaco-Tres Palos branch of 34 km in service between 1898 and 1920.

Railway Finance Rome (Missing)

Internal railway network of the Roma farm north of Chicama with 53 km of lines and a trail of 0.914 m. It was linked to the Chicama Valley Railroad. It was owned by the Larco Herrera.

Chimbote Railway -Tablones - Huallanca (Disappeared)

This is one of the most interesting railroads in Peru. It was originally planned to serve the entire Callejón de Huaylas, linking Chimbote and Recuay with a total of 265 km. It was started in 1872 by Meiggs. It was inaugurated in 1876 until Tablones. It was built up to Huallanca and never reached beyond. It reached this town in 1912, being its total traveled 170 km.

Initially Chinese braceros participated almost exclusively in its construction. During the Pacific War , the Chilean soldiers under Lynch's command they used it to destroy the Palo Seco estate of Don Dionisio Derteano, burned 7 locomotives and then destroyed the road itself. This train started as private, later it was property of the State, later it was administered by the Peruvian which sold it in 1943 to the Corporacion Peru del Santa, a para-state entity. It had a trail of 0.914 m and a total of 42 tunnels an impressive number for its route.

It operated locomotives Baldwin 280. It had a small branch from Chuquicara to La Galgada of 29 km inaugurated in 1921 and projected to Cajabamba. In the beginning of the 1950s, 4 Porter diesel locomotives and 2 Ruhrtaler diesel locomotives were purchased for maneuvers in the port of Chimbote. The railroad was completely abandoned after the 1970 earthquake that caused great damage to the line (60%) although it transported an appreciable amount of cargo, especially coal for the steelmaker and passengers, it was not rebuilt.

Remains of locomotives can be seen on display in the botanical garden of Chimbote. Its embankments have been converted into a road that uses its many tunnels. The main station of Chimbote is now a market. A few years before the earthquake, they modernized the rolling stock and purchased two ALCO / MLW locomotives and a KINKI / Sharyo autovagon. Its embankments have been converted into a road that uses its many tunnels. The main station of Chimbote is now a market. Its embankments have been converted into a road that uses its many tunnels. The main station of Chimbote is now a market.

Samanco Railway - Nepeña (Disappeared)

It served the haciendas of the Nepeña valley south of Chimbote, especially San Jacinto. It had some branches such as Agua Hedionda, Mitán, Moro and Vesique with 47 km and 1,060 m gauge. It entered service in 1920 and there is some material in Samanco.

Piura-Lambayeque Railway (Projected)

The Spanish railway company FEVE and the Piura Regional Government, signed in July 2012, a Framework Cooperation Agreement for the development of a new rail transport system that will improve the traffic of goods and passengers between Piura and Lambayeque. The signing took place at the Embassy of Spain in Peru. The regional president of Piura Javier Atkins stressed the strategic importance of the Piura-Lambayeque Railway for the development of the region as the most appropriate means for transporting the productions of the area, which in the next five years will increase considerably its volume by incorporating more of 100,000 new hectares. [1]It is estimated that the total work will have an investment of 700 to 800 million dollars and would also serve to increase the flow of tourists.

The railroads of the center of
Peru and Lima

Sugar railways of northern Lima (Missing)

In the current province of Barranca there were several railroads for the sugar estates such as: Supe-San Nicolás 5 km and 1,070 m gauge; Pativilca-Paramonga 7.5 km; Supe-Barranca-Pativilca 11 km and Barranca-Alpas of 27 km these last of 0.60 m, which made a total of 52 km and were built between 1899 and 1913. As of 1928 they were joined with the Northwest railway.

Railroad Playa Chica - Las Salinas (Disappeared)

It was used for the extraction of salt south of Huacho, opened in 1873 with a 1 m and 10 km long trail. It was for a while connected to the Northwest Railway. It stopped operating in 1920.

Chancay Railway - Huaral - Harphouse Palpa (Disappeared)

Connected to the Lima-Ancon-Chancay railway until before the war of 1879 and opened in 1875, it belonged to the Palpa Agricultural Company, which also operated the Chancay dock. It had a route of 29 km and 1 meter of trail. The Chileans destroyed it, it was rebuilt and abandoned around 1920.

Lima Railroad - Ancón - Chancay (Missing)

Another very interesting Peruvian railway. The railroad began in 1867 as the Lima-Huacho railway project. The first stage put into operation at the beginning of 1870 was the Lima-Ancón section of 42 km and wide gauge of 1,435 m. It was the work of Don Waldo Graña. At the end of that same year, the Ancón-Chancay section was inaugurated, following the line of the dangerous section called Pasamayo. In Chancay it connected with the train to Huaral and Palpa. The war of 1879 and nature destroyed the Ancon-Chancay section, which by the bombardment of the Chilean squadron and the wind was covered with sand. The Lima-Ancón section, which was not affected, was left in 1890 by the Peruvian as a branch of the Central FFCC. In Ancón it had a deviation of 7 km until Polvorín, opened in 1953. It was linked in Lima to the Central Railroad by a diagonal bridge over the Rímac River, which connected it to the station of Desamparados and whose pillars are still visible.
Originally, that is, before the war, the station was on the right bank of the Rimac between the streets Tajamar and Cabezas today Virú, which was reached by passing a bridge called La Palma from the Rufino Torrico jirón. The line was almost the outline of the current highway to Ancon. It was abandoned in 1964, when the Peruvian Corporation definitively suspended traffic. There are also some pillars of the bridge over the river Chillón, a tunnel that goes under the highway to Ancón, the station in this spa, some embankments, in addition to the aforementioned pillars on the Rimac. which was reached by passing a bridge called La Palma from the Rufino Torrico jirón. The line was almost the outline of the current highway to Ancon. 

It was abandoned in 1964, when the Peruvian Corporation definitively suspended traffic. There are also some pillars of the bridge over the river Chillón, a tunnel that goes under the highway to Ancón, the station in this spa, some embankments, in addition to the aforementioned pillars on the Rimac. which was reached by passing a bridge called La Palma from the Rufino Torrico jirón. The line was almost the outline of the current highway to Ancon. It was abandoned in 1964, when the Peruvian Corporation definitively suspended traffic. There are also some pillars of the bridge over the river Chillón, a tunnel that goes under the highway to Ancón, the station in this spa, some embankments, in addition to the aforementioned pillars on the Rimac.

Railroad of the Northwest of the Peru (Missing)

Do not confuse this railway with Lima-Ancón. Although originally both were part of the project to link Lima with Huacho, this railway was not part of the previous one. The twentieth century began with the old idea of ​​building a railway to Huacho. A contract was signed with a North American company, Northwestern Railway of Peru, the same one that began work in 1909.

A new line was made and the section of Pasamayo was abandoned as dangerous, building the line by the current variant of Pasamayo despite its great slope. It was arranged by law 470 to construct from
Lima the line, but by the existence of the railroad Lima-Ancón and by means of the law 1530 this idea was modified. Probably the Peruvian pressed to protect their interests. Although by laws 2912 of 1918 and 4131 of 1920 authorized to extend the line to Lima, it did not materialize. The line had a total extension of 194 km, including branches and deviations with gauge of 0.914, which made it incompatible with that of Lima-Ancón of 1.435 m.

The construction company did not comply with the terms established in the contract and the line reverted to the State. The railroad started from Ancón, from where you could change the one from
Lima, followed Huaral with a branch to Chancay of 13 km; It passed through Las Salinas and reached Huacho. It was finished until December 1911. From Huacho there was another branch of 56 km to Sayán opened in 1912. Until 1920 it was administered by the Peruvian. In 1928, through an additional section of 46 km, it was connected to Supe and Barranca. In this area operated lines that served the sugar industry as Supe-San Nicolás, Pativilca-Paramonga and Supe-Barranca-Pativilca, with which it was spliced. He had 7 locomotives, 3 passenger cars and 100 freight cars, he brought, among other things, salt to Lima.

It was the only extensive railway that ran parallel to the coast, they called it the ff.cc. coastal. Its main headquarters were in Huacho as well as its factory and factory. The Huacho-Barranca section was halted in 1960 and the rest in 1964. The useful rolling stock became part of the
Huancayo-Huancavelica and Cuzco-Santa Ana lines. There are some traces such as a bridge over the Huaura river and the station in Huacho . President Balta ordered in 1869 the construction of the Huacho-Sayán railway as part of what would eventually reach Cerro de Pasco, being this the shortest route to extract the minerals of this last zone to the sea. The project never materialized. With the proceeds of the auction of the remaining usable material, other State roads were improved, according to Law 15663.

Central Railroad of Peru (Operating)

One of the two major rail lines that currently exist in Peru. It begins at Callao with a standard trail of 1,435 m and an extension of 535 km. As it is widely known to be the second highest railway in the world, 1Arrives at the Oroya where it divides towards the north and towards the south with a series of branches. It reaches Cerro de Pasco and Huancayo. It is currently operated by Ferrovías Central Andina. This line was originally designed as the railroad to La Oroya and its feasibility studies date back to 1859. The construction contract was signed in 1869 along with the train from Arequipa to Puno with don Enrique Meiggs. On January 1, 1870, the Monserrate station began to be built. The railroad followed the route of the Rimac river to Chosica.

In August of 1875 the line arrived at Chicla near Matucana to 142 km of the
Callao. There it stopped for a time due to lack of funding and the war with Chile. After the war, the country was ruined and devastated. We had to start the gigantic task of healing wounds and restoring what was destroyed by the invader, which was a lot. Unable to rebuild and continue his railroads, Peru signed the Grace contract with the English citizen Michael Grace in 1889, through which he took charge of repairing and completing the lines. In exchange, he would receive three million tons of guano, cash payments and the concession of the state railways for 66 years.

In 1890 Grace established in London the Peruvian Corporation, which took over the operation of the railways for 77 years, although it was later reduced to 66. In 1891 the corporation created 7 subsidiaries. After 1890, the line was continued by Mr. Ernesto Malinowsky, arriving at La Oroya in 1893 after overcoming a number of obstacles between all the points that unites in the central highlands. It arrived in
Huancayo in 1908. It has 61 bridges and 65 tunnels, many of which are true masterpieces.

By law 6281 of 1928, the Peruvian railways were ceded to the Peruvian government in perpetuity, which was to be in the contract only 66 years, according to the contracts of 1890 and 1907. These were: Paita-Piura, Pacasmayo-Guadalupe-Chilete, Salaverry- Trujillo-Ascope, Chimbote-Huallanca, Pisco-Ica, the FFCC del Sur and the Central FFCC.

Railroads of Cerro de Pasco Copper Corporation (Operating)

Until before the creation of Centromin and nationalization, the Central Railroad portion, between La Oroya and Cerro de Pasco, belonged to the Cerro de Pasco Corporation mining company, under the name of Cerro de Pasco Railway. It reached Cerro de Pasco in 1906. It has 152 km of route, of a total development of 314 km owned by the company.

Mining Railroad of Cerro de Pasco (Destroyed)

Railroad that united and served several mining companies established in Cerro de Pasco before 1879, with a total of 30 km of 1,076 m of track. It had no rail communication with the coast. It was completely destroyed during the war with Chile. Some lines were reconstructed by Cerro de Pasco Corporation and other companies.

Lima- Lurín Railway (Missing)

This missing railroad was part of an attempt to link Lima with Pisco dating from 1868. After the war with Chile emerged the strategic need to provide the southern area of ​​Lima with a means of transporting troops to prevent or at least hinder On disembarkation of an enemy army. The railroad to Lurín was the first stage of the one that later would arrive at Chilca, Mala, Cañete and possibly to Pisco. The government gave laws in 1888, 1889, 1895 and 1901, but there were no interested parties and the Pisco railway was never built.

The railroad to Lurin was initiated by the State in 1913 as the first section of the Lima-Chilca road of 75 km and delivered to traffic in 1918, when the fears of a new invasion had already passed. It was until 1932 administered by the Peruvian. He had his station in the shred Amazonas near Viterbo. Its trail was 0.914 m and a total distance of 48 km. It operated at its best 2 locomotives American Works 282. Starting from the aforementioned jirón continued on Rivera and Dávalos street, then on Jr. Junín next to the Barbones barracks, from there it passed by El Agustino hill, Gracilaso de la Vega streets and
Ollanta, crossed Nicolás Ayllón by Manuel Echandía street, crossed Nicolás Arriola on a bridge and took everything that today is Av. Circunvalación until Av. 

Salvador Allende in San Juan de Miraflores and Villa María del Triunfo, from there by Tablada from Lurín to the Atocongo camp near the cement factory, the Lurín River passed over a bridge of 52 m and reached the town of Pachacamac and from there to Lurín. His biggest burden was the material extracted from the quarry of Atocongo that he brought to the old cement factory of Maravillas. Its initial station could be seen until a
Lima mayor decided to demolish it and use the land as a trade fair. 

The stations of Pachacamac and Lurín can still be seen and serve as housing. It had 11 stations. There is also the small bridge over the pine clover. It stopped operating in 1963, incredibly due to lack of income. If it currently existed, it would transport a huge number of passengers. The same can be said of the train to Ancon.

The money from the sale of its usable material was used to improve other lines of the State. Its initial station could be seen until a
Lima mayor decided to demolish it and use the land as a trade fair. 

English Railway Lima - Callao (Missing)

In order to avoid confusion with the Central Railroad of Peru, we have called it as the people of Lima will baptize it. This is the first railway that was built in Peru and the first in South America. Its beginnings go back to 1833 when the government of Orbegoso published a notice in the newspaper El Conciliador (name that for some time took El Peruano) calling for its construction. Only one bidder Tomás Gill was presented. The government approved its proposal on March 20, 1834, but the work did not begin. Its construction arranged by Castile on November 14, 1845, initiated the era of railroads in the country.

Its bases and conditions were approved in December 1848, granting them the concession to entrepreneurs Pedro Gonzales Candamo and Vicente Oyague y hermano. Prisoners participated in its construction. Eleven months after the works began, in 1850, the trains made the route between the San Juan station, an old church and convent that were demolished, in the current San Martín square and the
Callao station that was in the modern Grau square. from the port, it was May 17, 1851. It started from the aforementioned San Martín square, which is called the Mincheo, followed by the Quilca jirón, continued through Zorritos and then through Colonial Avenue, made its entrance to Callao by the Calle de la Condesa, today Av. Buenos Aires, until behind the Real Felipe that served as customs, with which it had two branches built in 1852, arriving at the port terminal.

One of the largest railroad businesses of its time, despite only having 15 km of travel, with a gauge of 1,435 m. Its cost was 550,000 soles and it produced 400. 000 annual income soles. Between 1851 and 1860 it transported a total of six million passengers, that is to say more than three times the population of the country at that time. When the San Martín square was built in the 1920s, the station became part of the Quilca and Chota blocks, San Jacinto street and the name was changed to a freight railroad to
Callao of the Lima Railways company, formed in 1865. 8 stations one of them in La Legua and two branches one to La Punta, 1903 and another to Bellavista, 1897. 

It was electrified in 1907 and disappeared at the end of the 1930s. The tram opened in 1904 affected it as they almost followed the same route. In order to sharpen the competition more, a second tram was installed in 1905 that arrived until La Punta in 1906 traveling 17 km.

Railways Lima - La Magdalena (Missing)

Contrasting with the success of the railway to Callao, the first line to La Magdalena was a failure. Inaugurated in 1875, with 6 km of route and 1.05 m of width of track, it was suspended in 1878. It was resumed in 1886 and in 1899 it was abandoned and remained in a deplorable state. It was owned by Messrs. Bichon and Guibert.

Its station was in the first block of the Av. Bolivia to a flank of the old Penitentiary, current Tower of
Lima. I continued along the aforementioned avenue until I met Tingo María, passed the Plaza de la Bandera and continued through Sucre, from there down Independencia Street until arriving at the Magdalena Nueva. In 1899 his concession expired.

In 1901 a second line was opened to the Magdalena, which started from Plaza San Martín, following Quilca, Alfonso Ugarte and Av. Brasil. It was 5.3 km and 1,435 m gauge. The service was in charge of the company that operated the English train to
Callao and that of Chorrillos, called Compañía del Ferrocarril Urbano de Lima. It was converted into an electric tram.

Lima Railway - Chorrillos (Missing)

The third railroad built in Peru, after the Lima-Callao in 1851 and Tacna-Arica in 1856. It was inaugurated in 1858 and was the second in the capital. Its extension was 15 km and the trail was 1,435 m. They called it English railway to Chorrillos. The works began in November 1856 and as we mentioned in 1858 trains began to circulate. The cost of the work was 350,000 soles. The contract was signed between the Peruvian State and Messrs. Felipe Barreda y Hermanos on January 9, 1857. 

The initial station, called Encarnación, was located in Plaza San Martín on Pacae Street (Carabaya Street) and had a connection at the station. San Juan with the train that went to
Callao. His route to Chorrillos followed the current Vía Expresa, up to Javier Prado where he continued on Av. Republic of Panama and the street Dionisio Derteano, continued by Recavarren and again with the Paseo de la República at the Angamos bridge approximately.

In Miraflores there was a station and a small electric tram that reached Balta Street. At the height of Benavides, the line was diverted to the area called Tejada. It crossed Balta Plaza, from there by Av. Bolognesi. In Barranco there was another station. It entered to Chorrillos by the Av. Panama, it took the Railroad street and the Av. Alejandro Iglesias or Alfonso Ugarte at the end of which it had its final and main whereabouts. It had a detour to the hacienda Villa.

It influenced the development of Miraflores and Barranco. It was used intensively for the movement of troops during the Chilean invasion of 1881. It had an annual income of 110,000 soles on average, it was therefore profitable.

The Decauville Railway (Provisional)

During the construction of the penitentiary in Lima (1856-1860) by Mariano Felipe Paz Soldán, a Decauville railway, a portable and narrow line, 0.60 m used in agriculture, operated between the building and the San Bartolomé hill. and mining, which brought material to the work. It was also called train to the quarries. It was also used to move the statue of Bolívar when it arrived from Europe in 1859 to the plaza of the same name, from San Juan station in Plaza San Martín.

Railway San Vicente de Cañete - Cerro Azul (Disappeared)

Started in 1870 by the Scot Henry Swayne, this railroad, which in 1925 was 15 km long and 0.914 m wide, served almost exclusively to transport the agricultural production of the fertile valley, especially cotton and sugar. He was in charge of the British Sugar Company, one of whose partners was Augusto B. Leguía. In August 1881, a Chilean column commanded by Commander Baezaand Sergeant Sofanor Parra used it to destroy haciendas and kill "negros y cholos". It closed its operations in 1958.

Until 1973 it only provided a reduced service in the port area by the pier. Until recently, the station with the remains of the rolling stock could be seen at Cerro Azul, leaving nothing of the fixed material, except parts of the line at the loading dock. The Ruhrthaler diesel that is exposed as a monument never ran in that line but is moved from the Port of

Huancayo-Huancavelica Railway (Operational)

It was originally designed to reach Castrovirreyna and Ayacucho. It is called the Tren Macho because "it leaves when it wants and arrives when it can". It is one of the only two railroads that are still owned by the State operated by the Ministry of Transport and Communications, rehabilitated and modernized by standard gauge and will be able to travel from Callao to Huancavelica. It is 148 km long and has a trail of 0.914 m. It was started in 1908 and given to traffic in 1926. It was built a few kilometers towards Castrovirreyna and Ayacucho but then they were abandoned. It had two steam locomotives at its Huancayo station and operates with Alco Diesel and KINKI / Sharyo autovagons. The Wickham autovagons are not operational. They have already changed the track to 1,435 m.

Ferrocarril Chincha - Tambo de Mora (Disappeared)

Built in 1898 and administered by the company of the Tambo de Mora FFCC, which also managed the port, 12 km long and 1 m long. I was passing through Sunampe. His station was in the street Mariscal Castilla de Chincha. It stopped circulating approximately in 1940. A branch was built to Chincha Baja in 1924. It served to transfer the production of the valley to the sea, including wines and piscos and bring other products, such as fertilizers.

Pisco- Ica Railway (Missing)

Railroad whose initial attempts date from 1861, was completed in 1871 to take the production of the important valley of Ica to distant markets. It was built, with the intervention of Malinowsky, by the company of José Francisco Canevaro, who sold it to the government. He leased it to Don José Boza. His factory and factory were in Pisco. In 1881, a Chilean garrison under Colonel Leoncio Tagle ransacked the valley and destroyed it by train. It was 74 km long and had a length of 1,435 m including a 6 km branch to Guadalupe. In 1928 the State gave it to the Peruvian Corporation, which rented it until 1940 to a Mr. Calderón. Then he administered it until he decided to abandon it due to lack of movement. This happened in 1956. There is almost no trace of it except the old dock in Pisco.

Ferrocarriles del Sur and Southeast of Peru

Southern Peru Railway (Operational)

The most extensive of all the railroads that have been built and still circulating in Peru. Grace was in charge of Meiggs. It is 1,435 gauge and 940 km long. Part of the port of Mollendo , goes up to Arequipa, then arrive in Juliaca where it branches off on a branch to Puno on the Titicaca and the other to the city of Cuzco . The maximum elevation points are reached in Crucero Alto and La Raya (4319 masl). It is currently operated by the company Peru Rail. This railway started with the commissioning of the Mollendo - Arequipa section on January 6, 1871, whose construction began a year earlier.

Afterwards the
Arequipa line was completed. Puno was connected to this line, and this was put into service in January 1874. The work was in charge of Peruvian and Bolivian workers. The cost of this section was 33 million soles. The cost of the Mollendo - Arequipa section had been one million eight hundred thousand soles. The Juliaca - Cuzco stretch began for 25 million in 1872 and was halted in 1875 due to economic difficulties.

In 1890, after fifteen years of inactivity due to the war and other causes, signed the contract Grace, the works were restarted by the Peruvian to finish it until Cuzco . In 1892, Marangani was reached and in 1894, Sicuani . It reached Cuzcoin 1908, already in the twentieth century.

It was ceded to the Peruvian in perpetuity in 1928. Today is operated by the
Peru rail company, founded by Lorenzo Sousa Debarbieri but its Chairman of the Board since its foundation and having made the railroad one of the most important freight transporters in Latin America.

Railway Ilo - Moquegua (Missing)

This railroad was completed in 1873 by Meiggs and only 7 years later, in 1880, during the Pacific Warthe Chilean Army destroyed it completely, after using it to reach Moquegua and destroy it.

Presidents Iglesias in 1884, Cáceres in 1886 and 1889 and López de Romaña in 1899 tried to rebuild the road through a private company. There were no interested parties. Only after 1907, 27 years later, the same State restored it. 

It started operating in 1909. It was 98 km long and had a 1,435 m gauge. The locals called it the Calamazo train and served commerce and incipient mining in the area. Due to low demand for passengers and cargo, auto-rails were used based on trucks converted to rail vehicles. In 1964 it stopped operating due to lack of movement. Some of its material was transferred to the Tacna-Arica railway.

You can still see its embankments and the station called Hospicio, that was approximately in the middle of its route. This train had to be administered by the Peruvian due to the contract with the government of 1911, but it never took charge of it, so it was always in the hands of the State. Its lack of profitability would explain this disinterest.

Southern Peru Railway (Operating)

The most modern train built in Peru to serve the needs of this giant mining company. Une Ilo, including the copper smelter and refinery, with the Toquepala and Cuajone mines, possibly linking the Quellaveco deposit. It uses a standard gauge of 1.435 m and has a length of 240 km with 5 tunnels, one of which is 8 km, being the sixth largest in the world. Its rolling stock is the most modern and suitable for this type of activity.

Railroad Cusco - Santa Ana - Quillabamba (Operating)

This is one of the best-known railroads in the country. It has 110 km, a narrow trail of 0.914 m, connects Cusco with Machu Picchu and other towns and villages along the line, which gives a passage and important cargo, making it very profitable.

In 1927 it was taken by the Peruvian and in 1931 it was taken over by the State. It is also under concession to
Peru Rail , which has made a series of improvements to the service.

However, an avalanche of mud during the period of the El Niño phenomenonof 1997-98 destroyed part of the line that goes to Quillabamba, inaugurated in 1978, without that until now it has been reconstructed.

The section to Quillabamba has not been privatized. It started in 1914 and arrived in 1925 until Santa Ana. It has a branch of 13 km between Huayllabamba and Pachar, which is currently in disuse.

Matarani Railway - La Joya (Operating)

With 62 km and 1,435 m gauge, it was built between 1947 and 1950 by the State to shorten the route to the coast. It is part of the Southern Railway that starts in Matarani and Mollendo. It was temporarily handed over to the Peruvian.

Tacna Railway - Arica (Operational)

This railway breaks several records: it is the only international road Peru has and the oldest one still standing, since it was the second to be built there in 1856 when Arica was Peruvian and ruled Don Ramón Castilla. It is the only railway that is partially in another country. It is the most historic of all for the glorious episodes of which it was witness, finally it is one of the two lines that still belongs to the State. We could say that this train is more a national monument than a railway. Although its usefulness is very limited, it does not seem that it will be abandoned or privatized. It is administered by Enafer and since the year two thousand when there was a flood there is no movement on the Arica side. Next to the start of the railway line is the dock at the service of Peru in Arica. In 2016, only one Sentinel / Wickham autovagón is operational.

The Tacna-Arica railway is 62 km long and 1,435 m long. Its execution was authorized in 1851 and its construction was handed over to José Hegan. The service trains began in 1856 and was given in concession for 99 years. When occupying the Chileans Tacna and Arica, the railway was in the hands of the English company Arica & Tacna Railway Co., reason why they could neither touch nor expropriate it, by express agreement included in the treaty of Ancón. In 1955, when reverting to the Peruvian State, the road was under the absolute ownership of it. By then Tacna had returned to being Peruvian and the Chilean section of the railroad that was on the side of Arica, also remained as Peruvian property. In 1869 President Balta ordered the studies to be carried out for his extension to La Paz, Bolivia, which never took place. If it has materialized,

Railway Tambo del Sol - Ucayali (Unfinished)

This 1887 project to unite the jungle to the rest of the country has its greatest expression in this railway. A contract was signed in 1907, law 718, and it was modified in 1912, law 1563 but the work was not started. A new contract in 1927 revived the idea. In fact, until 1930, 80 km of a total of 580 were built with narrow gauge. 6.5 million soles were invested at that time. In 1949 the project was relaunched with normal gauge, but in 1957 it was definitively paralyzed. Tambo del Sol is near Cerro de Pasco.

Interoceanic Railroad Salaverry-Leoncio Prado-Frontera Perú-Brasil - FERRIPEB (Projected)

This great national railway project was born in 1995 in Leoncio Prado-Cuenca del Ponaza, province of Picota in the department of San Martín, founded by his mentor Mr. Mg. Sixto Alejandro Morey Trigozo, President of the Peruvian Corporation Geopolitical Bioceanic Project, Peru - Brazil, 981 km long; begins its journey in the Pacific Ocean, in the Port of Salaverry, province of Trujillo, Department of Liberty and is projected transversally by the areas of influence of Trujillo, Otuzco, Quiruvilca, Huamachuco, Bambamarca-Bolivar, Huicungo, Pachiza, Juanjui, Bellavista, Picota, Leoncio Prado-Ponaza Basin, Shamboyacu, Pampa Hermosa, Inahuaya, Orellana, Contamana, Pachacutec, Manco Capac Frontera Peru-Brazil, in Hito 78 Alto Tapiche district, Requena province, Loreto department,

Railway Infrastructure registered in INDECOPI in 2008 with the file number 001363-2008. It has the approval of the Center for Higher National Studies, Joint Command of the Armed Forces, Ministry of Defense, Ministry of Transport and Communications, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, National Geographic Institute, Regional Governments of La Libertad, San Martín, Loreto, Ucayali and Madre of God, of the Local Governments of the Bioceanic Road Corridor Salaverry-Leoncio Prado-Frontera Peru, Brazil; This work of modern engineering proposed by the Bio-chemical Geopolitical Project, Peru - Brazil, assumes as a transcendental responsibility and mission to promote excellence in management to make
Peru a just and prosperous nation, increasing its cultural and economic presence in the global scenario to contribute to improving the quality of life of all Peruvians. Approved by Law Nº 29613 that declares of public necessity and national interest.

It also directs efforts to radicalize the fight against poverty, illiteracy, malnutrition, drug trafficking, terrorism, foreign invasion, damage to the environment, smuggling, money laundering, crime, organized crime, corruption, mafias and unemployment through the execution of projects of productive chains and chain of value in the scope of their influence, promoting the rational use of the natural resources of the Amazon, the Andes and the coast.

The conviction of the geopolitical and strategic value of this mega project, the opportunity to communicate transversally several departments, cities and towns of the country and the projection of reaching the Atlantic Ocean, converts the continental spaces of Peru and Brazil into a physical platform of tourist services, of foreign trade and transport for the Asia-Pacific and the Mercosur that thanks to the railroad will unite two great oceans and to the countries that are in their extremes, it is a reality of regional and global interest.

Railway Museum of Peru

In Tacna , at the train station in Arica , on the corner of May 2 and Albarracín, the Railway Museum of Peru operates. It has a collection of valuable pieces that belonged to the various railroads of the country. The most important is the locomotive number 3 with its tender corresponding to the Tacna-Arica railroad that served for the movement of troops to the port, it is located on Av. Grau in a park. It also has a unique library, railway workshops and other curiosities, such as a map of four meters long that contains the topographic profile of the Tacna-Arica railway, raised and made by Ing. Walter Evans in 1854. The machine 3 who arrived in Tacna in 1868, is in a beautiful courtyard and is in excellent working conditions, using coal as fuel. There is also a luxurious railcar that served Francisco Bolognesi Cervantes ,José Joaquín Inclán Gonzáles Vigil and other heroes to transport themselves.

Other Railroads in Peru

In the statistical yearbook of the former Ministry of Public Works and Development of 1966 appear, in addition to some of the previously studied, the following railways:


First name Trail (cm) Length (km) Functioning
Hacienda Laredo - Menocucho (Trujillo) 0.914 trail (1) 51 1896/1966
Shelby-San José de Huarón (Pasco) 0.750 (2) 43 1912
Puerto Chicama - Licapa (La Libertad) 0.914 31 1898
Hacienda Chucarapi - Ensenada (Arequipa) 0.600 (3) twenty 1924
Hacienda Pampa Blanca - Ensenada (Arequipa) 0.750 (3) 14 1905/1950
Hacienda Cartavio (La Libertad) 0.914 13 1906
Vítor - Sotillo (Arequipa) 1,435 (3) 12 1899/1931
Samanco - Hacienda San Jacinto (Ancash) 1,060 3 -


(1) Part of the old Trujillo railway
(2) Diversion of the Central Railroad
(3) Deviations from the Southern Railway

Ferrocarriles de Tarapacá

In the department of Tarapacá there were three railway lines built by the Peruvian State and dedicated exclusively to the transport of caliche or saltpeter in its natural state from the interior to the coast. These were:

Pisagua-Agua Santa-Sal de Obispo of 80 km and 0.60 m of track, built between 1870 and 1876 by Ramón Montero and brothers authorized in 1869.

Iquique-Pozo Almonte-La Noria of 113 km and 0.60 m also built between 1870 and 1876 also by Ramón Montero authorized in 1868. A concession was given by Castile in 1860 to Federico Pezet and José M. Costa, but not It was concreted. In the Atlas of Peru by Mariano Felipe Paz Soldán from 1865, in the plane of Iquique, this train appears as a project. In 1871 the Montero are authorized, without success, to join this railroad with the previous one and to extend it to the Bolivian border.

Patillos-Lagunas of 85 km and 0.75 m, also charged by the Monteros, but built by the Salitrera Esperanza Society. It operated between 1872 and 1877, when it was abandoned without being completed (110 km were projected) because Patillos suffered a tsunami and legal problems. In 1873 the three are transferred to the Cia. Of the Salitrero FFCC of Peru, with the Montero as partners.

During the Campaign of Tarapacá , the Peruvian Army began the works of joining the roads, without success.

Some Explanation of Rail Gauge

The gauges , or gauge, in English, of the railroads are usually in double measure, this is in the metric system and in the feet and inches. Table of equivalences.

Metric Feet and inches
1,435 4 '8 ½ "
1,060 3 '5 ¾ "
0.914 3'
0.750 2 '5 ½ "
0.600 1 '11 5/8 "

Bibliography of Peru Railroads

History of the Republic of Peru, Jorge Basadre, Lima 1970.
Statistical Yearbook of the Ministry of Development and Public Works, Directorate of Railways 1966
Bibliographic Historical Dictionary of Peru, Milla Batres, Lima 1986
Great Geography of Peru, Manfer, Juan Mejía Baca, Lima 1987
Historical Review of the FF.CC. of Peru, Federico Costa and Laurent, Lima 1908
The Railways of Lima, Alberto Regal, Lima 1965
Documentary of Peru, Basic Encyclopedia of Peru,
Lima 1984
Plans of Lima 1613-1983, collection printed by Petroperú, 1983
Presidential Messages, National Congress Archive

Annex of Peru Railroads

In the yearbook on Latin American railways published in London in 1911 by John Vavasour Noel, the following information about the state of the Peruvian railways is recorded:

Peru Railways in Use, Under Construction and in Project 

State km
Operating 2528 km
In construction 722 km
In project 3686 km

Peru Railroads in Operation, Broad Gauge 1,435

Line km
Paita-Piura 97 km
Eten-Ferreñafe 43
Chiclayo-Pátapo 24
Pacasmayo-Chilete 135
Lima-Callao 14
Lima-Chorrillos 14
Callao-La Punta 2,6
Callao-Bellavista 3,4
Lima-Ancón 38
Callao-La Oroya 222 (part of the central railway)
Ticlio-Morococha 16 (part of the central)
Oroya-Huancayo 122 (part of the central)
Tambo-Jauja 2.5
Huancayo-Extension twenty
Oroya-Cerro de Pasco 132 (part of the central)
Cerro de Pasco-Goyllarisquisga 43 (part of the central)
Pisco-Ica 74
Mollendo-Juliaca-Puno 524 (part of the southern railway)
Juliaca-Cuzco 338 (part of the south)
Ilo-Moquegua 100

Peru Railroads in Operation, Narrow Gauge

Line km
Piura-Catacaos 10 km
Bayóvar-Reventazón 48
Pimentel-Lambayeque 24
Eten-Cayaltí 36
Salaverry-Ascope 76
Huanchaco-Tres Palos 14
Railway of the hacienda Roma 53
Trujillo-Menochuco 26
Chicama-Pampas 4.5
Chimbote-Planks 57
Supe-Pativilca 12 (part of the Northwest)
Supe-San Nicolás 6 (part of the Northwest)
Pativilca-Paramonga 7 (part of the Northwest)
Chancay-Palpa 25
Casapalca-El Carmen 4
Cerro Azul-Cañete 10
Tambo de Mora-Chincha 12
Playa Chica-Salinas-Huacho 10 (part of the Northwest)
Ensenada-Pampa Blanca 20
Tumbes-Puerto Pizarro 11
Total in operation 2528 km

Peru Railroads Under Construction

Line km
Planks-Recuay 209 km (section of the Chimbote-Huallanca-Recuay)
Huancayo-Ayacucho 260
Ancon-Huacho 253 (part of the Northwest)
Total under construction 722 km

Peru Railways In Project Status

Line km
Pacasmayo-Eten 65 km *
Guadalupe-Cajamarca 186 km *
Chocope-San Pedro 52 *
Trujillo-Santa 113 *
Yonan-Magdalena 62 *
Menocucho-Quiruvilca 80 (second section of Trujillo-Menocucho) *
Lima-Pisco 246 (only progressed to Lurín in 1918) *
Goyllarisquisga-Pucallpa 346 *
Oroya-Tarma-Port Whertman 528 *
Ayacucho-Cuzco 500 *
Vitor-Camaná 198 *
Ilo-La Joya 158 *
Cuzco-Santa Ana 185 (concluded)
Paita-Marañón 704 *
Tirapata-Mother of God 357 *
Tambo del Sol-Ucayali 580 *
Salaverry-Leoncio Prado-Frontera Peru-Brazil 981
Total in project 4,667 km

Peru Railroads Notes:

* They did not get built
** The Tacna-Arica railway is not included because it is then in territory occupied by Chile.

Read also our other many web pages on Peruvian Rail Transport:

Railways of Peru

Luxury Rail in Peru
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Belmond Andean Explorer – Peru
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Central Railroad of Peru
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‘’El Tren Macho’’
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Luxury Railways of Peru
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‘’El Tren Macho’’

Huancayo – Peru
Metro de Huancayo

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*Luxury Rail in Peru:
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