News: Spain, the largest high speed rail service in Europe

Spain, the largest high speed rail service in Europe
Written by Inmo Investments - 9 May 2016

With more than 3,100 km of cutting-edge high-speed rail lines and another 2,200 km due to be completed by 2020, Spain's high-speed rail system is the largest in Europe. Globally, only China has a larger network.

Since 2005 Spain has invested heavily in their rail network, and a web of high-tech high-speed AVE trains (Alta Velocidad Española) weave their way across the Iberian Peninsula daily at nearly 250 kph.

Owned by the Spanish government and operated by state rail carrier RENFE, scheduled return services operate daily from Alicante to Madrid with one-way ticket prices from as little as €32.00.

Fast, safe, and great value: leave Alicante railway station now, and you can be enjoying a coffee in a street cafe in the centre of Madrid in a shade over two hours.

The AVE Mediterranean coast line from Barcelona to Murcia has been under construction since 2011 and is due for completion late 2016/17. Promising even higher speeds with a 350 kph speed safety rating, the new line is expected to reduce travel times between Alicante and Barcelona to just 3 hours.

Meanwhile, RENFE have invested in the latest Italian designed 114 Series super-trains to complement its fleet of bullet-like rolling stock.

With the completion of the Perpignan to Barcelona high-speed line crossing the Pyrennees into France in 2013, RENFE offers a high-speed non-stop direct AVE service from Barcelona to Paris with ticket prices from just €79.00. The French capital can now be reached from Spain by train in under six and a half hours, opening up high-speed overland rail connections throughout Europe.

But with Iberian destinations such as Seville, Malaga, Toledo and Zaragoza all reached with RENFE´s high-speed AVE service from Alicante, exploring all of Spain becomes an exceptionally viable and tantalising proposition.

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