What Is the 'Chunnel' Train?

What Is the 'Chunnel' Train?
The "chunnel" train refers to the high-speed Eurostar that departs from London and travels beneath the English Channel. Formally known as the Channel Tunnel, the rail system revolutionized transportation between the United Kingdom and the European continent. A ride under the English Channel defines a completely different kind of adventure.


In 1802, Napoleon sketched blueprints for a tunnel under the English Channel. Almost two centuries later, the Eurotunnel group formed in the early 1980s to raise funds and create a cohesive plan. Construction finally began in 1987. Work was completed in 1994, and the "chunnel" was open for business.


It took three years for tunnel-boring machines to gouge out two rail tunnels and a service tunnel and required the removal of 50 million tons of rock and earth.


The "chunnel" transports both passengers and freight. Eurostar trains transported 28 million passengers and 12 million tons of freight through the "chunnel" during the first five years of operation.


"Chunnel" trains travel at speeds up to 186 mph, and at speeds up to 100 mph through the "chunnel." The 307-mile trip from London to Paris takes 2 hours and 15 minutes.

Seven Wonders

The "chunnel" is one of the seven wonders of the modern world.

Article Written By Katiana Zimmerman

Katiana Zimmerman is a writer, composer, and singer. She has written children's musicals, including the Emmy Award-winning HBO film Autism: The Musical. Kat has received two ASCAP awards. She holds a Master's degree from the Manhattan School of Music. Kat studied nutrition for disease prevention at the McDougall Institute, the Pritikin Institute, and FitPath in British Columbia.

Don't Miss a Thing!

All our latest outdoor content delivered to your inbox once a week.



We promise to keep your email address safe and secure.