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Real Rail Adventures with Jeff Wilson

Celebrating the Scenic Splendors and Railroad Marvels of Enchanting Switzerland

The wonders of the Swiss Alps exhilarate travelers and mountain railways mesmerize. Majesty and machine meet in enchanting Switzerland and in Real Rail Adventures. The series is co-produced by Small World Productions and KCTS/Seattle and distributed nationally in the U.S. by American Public Television Exchange.

Host Jeff Wilson and Emmy Award winning photographers lead viewers on a virtual adventure aboard the world's best rail system. Amazing trains, scenic grandeur, historic perspective and Jeff's concise travel advice mesh seamlessly in Real Rail Adventures.

From world-class mainlines, to stunning scenic routes, to pioneering steam locomotives and historic cog trains, we celebrate the triumphs of Swiss engineering and ingenuity including astonishing trestles, miraculous bridges and improbable tunnels.

Produced by the makers of 168 nationally distributed public television episodes including: Travels in Europe with Rick Steves, Smart Travels with Rudy Maxa, and Adventures with Purpose with Richard Bangs.  Small World honors include Emmys, CINE Golden Eagles Awards, Telly Awards, Lowell Thomas Gold Awards for Broadcast Journalism and an American Public Television Most Valuable Producer Award.


Swiss International Hubs

Swiss International Hubs

Real Rail Adventures: Swiss International Hubs explores the creative genius, historic ramparts, and modern wonders of five hub cities in centrally located Switzerland — Basel, Bellinzona, Geneva, Interlaken and Zurich. And Jeff Wilson hops trains to Paris, Milan, and Hamburg as he revels in the ease and pleasures of international train travel from centrally located Switzerland. This new hour-long documentary is the fourth episode in the Telly Award-winning and Emmy nominate series.

In Real Rail Adventures: Swiss International Hubs Wilson delves into the culture and art of Basel, and samples the delights and delicacies of “beautiful Bellinzona.” At Geneva’s International Red Cross and Red Crescent Museum Wilson learns the sobering realities faced by humanitarian relief workers. An afternoon stroll through Geneva’s old town offers lighter moments and glimpses of history in the city of peace. Rooftop honeybee hives, a stand-up paddle board tour, and a unique eco-friendly CO2 capture company catch Wilson’s attention in trend-setting Zurich.

Throughout the trip, Wilson models ways to create stress-free, illuminating, multi-country, multi-cultural European train adventures.  He concludes, “We can all enjoy the perks of international train travel from the heart of Europe.”

Show - Swiss Winter Magic

Swiss Winter Magic

Real Rail Adventures: Swiss Winter Magic—The adventures continue in this Telly Award-winning series with winter routes, fresh destinations, and more Swiss splendors. Host Jeff Wilson highlights Swiss Winter Magic, as he takes world-class trains to grand winter adventures: from Alpine and cross-country skiing, to snow-kiting, bobsledding, fat-tire biking, and snowshoeing. Along the way, stopovers reveal remarkable stories, daily traditions and historic villages.

Real Rail Adventures: Swiss Winter Magic destinations include: Chur, St. Moritz, the Goms Region, Zermatt and the Matterhorn, Gstaad, Zurich, and Mount Rigi. Featured rail lines include:  Albula-Bernina Railway, the Glacier Express, the Vitznau-Rigi Bahn, and the Montreux-Oberland Bernois Railway, known as the Golden Pass Line.

Show - Grand Train Tour of Switzerland

Grand Train Tour of Switzerland

Real Rail Adventures: Grand Train Tour of Switzerland – In the second episode of this Telly Award winning series, host Jeff Wilson continues his adventures with another set of train, different destinations, and more Swiss splendors. Viewers’ choices are expanded as well with more Swiss trains—new and old, big and small, breathtaking and efficient. This time Jeff is looking for outdoor excitement in Switzerland aboard the world’s best rail system. Wilson is following the official “Grand Train Tour of Switzerland,” eight train lines that circumnavigate the country. Jeff is on track for open-air fun: He whisks down whitewater rapids in the “Swiss Grand Canyon,” pedals the luminous shore of Lake Constance, kayaks serene Lake Trübsee, and climbs the perilous Mt. Titlis Ridge Walk. Along the way, Jeff enjoys an elegant lunch in a vintage dining car, tries his hand at a train simulator at the Locorama Railway Museum and hikes the Railway Adventure Trail.

Real Rail Adventures: Grand Train Tour of Switerland destinations include: Schaffhausen, Rhein Fall, St. Gallen, Appenzell, Martigny, Engelberg and more. Featured rail lines include: Albula-Bernina Railway, the Glacier Express, The Appenzeller Bahn, The Kambly Cookie Train and more.

Show - Switzerland


Real Rail Adventures: Switzerland In this hour-long public television documentary, Wilson crisscrosses a nation that reveres railroads. Jeff’s mission: discover why the Swiss—and countless others around the globe—love trains. He wonders, “Is it the adrenaline rush of big machines, surging against probability up a mountainside? Is it the thrill of exploration—the way trains slice through remote areas, giving up-close views of inaccessible landscapes? Maybe it’s the nostalgia, the echoes of a time gone.” Jeff concludes, “Maybe we love trains because they’re just plain fun!”

Real Rail Adventures: Switzerland destinations include: Zurich, Chur, Lugano, Bellinzona, Lucerne, Interlaken, Jungfrau, Montreux and more.  Featured rail lines include: Albula-Bernina Railway, the Glacier Express, The William Tell Express, the Golden Pass Line, The Chocolate Train and other Swiss trains.

  • Real Rail Adventures are hour-long public television documentaries produced by Small World Productions of Seattle and distributed nationally by American Public Television.
  • Check with your local public television station for Real Rail Adventures: Switzerland broadcast times and dates in your area: PUBLIC TV STATION FINDER
  • Click here to order Real Rail Adventures DVDs from the Smart Travels TV Store or call the order desk toll-free at 1-800-866-7425 anytime.


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