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Sydney-London by train
Rob McFarland Great train journey: Thalys and Eurostar in Paris.

With the threat of volcanic ash, strikes and other delays sometimes throwing flight schedules into disarray, one travel company is offering an almost plane-free route from Sydney to London.

The trip, which takes almost two weeks, or 366, hours to complete, takes in eight different train rides and a single flight from Darwin to Vietnam.

"Naturally, a journey of this kind will not appeal to everyone, but it does offer an alternative route to London for train enthusiasts or travellers who aren't able to fly long-haul for medical or personal reasons," said David Lovelock from Travel Associates, the company that has mapped out the itinerary.

The expedition includes two lengthy trips across Australia aboard the Indian Pacific and The Ghan, three rides through Asia, and three relatively short journeys from eastern Europe to London on the high-speed Thalys and Eurostar trains.

The longest of the individual journeys takes a staggering 147 hours, or just over six days, to complete, running from Beijing in China to Russia's capital Moscow on the Trans Mongolian.

The experience does not come cheap. The combined train trips cost around $8300 per person, not including additional flights, stopovers, accommodation or some meals and drinks.

Details: www.travel-associates.com.au.