Rail route of the month: along the Franz Josef railway from Prague to Vienna

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Our slow travel expert explores a historic central European rail route served by rural trains operating at a pace that would have been familiar to the Habsburgs

The classic rail route from Prague to Vienna through southern Bohemia was relegated to secondary status in the 1970s, but today it still offers one of the most engaging railway journeys in central Europe. Never ones to rush, my partner and I decided earlier this month to travel the length of the Emperor Franz Joseph Railway by slow trains.

We could, of course, have just hopped on one of the fast Railjet services which dash from Prague to Vienna via Brno in little more than four hours. But we were keen to travel through an out-of-the-way region of southern Bohemia by recreating a Habsburg-era slow travel experience.

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