It's hard to imagine that we as a species have come so far from the origins of flight in such a short time. In the span of 120 years, we've gone from the first powered flight ever to massive jetliners capable of flying across to the other side of the world in one go.
As any travel enthusiast will tell you, however, while flying to your destination is often the most practical option, it certainly isn't the only one out there. So, in modern times, how do these alternatives to flight measure up, and what unique benefits do they have?
Beyond the Golden Age of Flight
Go back a few decades and there was virtually nothing more glamorous or romantic than flying by plane. Across the 60s and 70s, being a pilot or flight attendant was as big a dream as being a doctor or astronaut, however, this feeling has largely been sucked out of the modern experience.
Of course, there are still many who see the romance and appeal of flight. The Flight Simulator games, which are pure flying simulations, remain popular to this day, and it isn't just video games either. Casino developers have managed to tap into the simple appeal by creating the Aviator casino game, a basic concept that resembles the layout of systems in a flight control tower. Like all technology, there are always enthusiasts ready to go to bat for it.
The thing is, the overall atmosphere of flight has waned in recent years as flights have become more commonplace and cheap no-frills services focus on function far more than experience. It is undoubtedly the fastest and most practical way to travel, but veteran travel lovers often find that lost romance elsewhere.
Planes, Trains, and Automobiles
For those living in and traveling across Europe, many will swear by rail travel as their transport of choice. Not only is the European rail network one of the best and most extensive in the world, it offers something that planes simply cannot. Rail passengers get the opportunity to explore the places they travel in much greater depth, even climbing down at various platforms to properly get out and about.
The other benefit that travelers find for rail travel, which is one also used by road travelers, is that the length of the journey itself makes it a holiday all to itself, in the same manner as a cruise. They have a much greater experience to them, and they come with the added benefit of having a far lower carbon footprint with trains. You can travel the width of Europe on the rails while generating less carbon than you'd get going by air from London to France.
The whole experience has been improved for European rail travelers as well thanks to the introduction of the Eurail interrail pass which allows travel throughout the European Union on a single ticket. There's also a global pass for those visiting the EU from outside countries.
There is an old adage that travel is less about the destination than the journey, and that is what rail, sea and road have got. While none are always practical or convenient, they are often cheaper, better for the environment and far more of an experience than you would get from thousands of feet in the air.