I’m living on a train in India. Seriously. Well for a week at least I am. This lifetime experience came about thanks to ROCS Travel in Malta. This journey is now part of their extensive holiday programme and the hubby and I are here to find out what it’s all about. We landed in Mumbai (3-hr flight from Dubai), the train is riding all the way to Delhi stopping at different places along the way including the famous Golden Triangle.
What is it?
The train is called The Deccan Odyssey. It is a luxury train that travels around India offering you the experience of a sort of ‘cruise on land’ or as I’m calling it – the experience of living like a princess for a week.
The train has a number of different carriages that are connected to each other that offer different functions.
- There are two restaurants with different decor
- There is a spa
- There is a gym
- There is a bar
- There is a lounge room
- There are different cabins
My cabin is really large – I have a living room, a bedroom, a sofa area, two desks and two closets. The furnishing are all made of solid wood and sturdy. Soft furnishings are amixture of silk and cotton, woven blackout blinds, rich carpet decor and lots of light. Definitely, fit for a royal or moi.
Sleeping on a Train
The first night I was jetlagged and I found the train a bit odd so I didn’t manage to sleep, the second night was much better and last night I was out like a rock. The rocking motion is actually pretty nice, almost like being out at sea
The train mainly travels at night which means you wake up at a different destination every morning. A valet is designated to your cabin ready to help you out with literally every need. Every morning you are woken up by your valet and he brings you tea, coffee and biscuits. Breakfast follows with a choice of Indian or continental.
On average, you leave the train at about 9:00 am and are greeted by dancers and musicians typical to the place you’ve arrived at. You get on board a bus and are taken a short distance away to see the village / a beautiful fort / museum / palace – depending on the day’s plan. At each point, everything is meticulously planned complete with local area experts, transportation needs etc. Each excursion is a great mixture of fun and informative. We have even had dinner on top of a fort complete with musicians, dancers, candles and rose petals showered onto me.
You return to the train for an hour for a 3-course lunch which is then followed by another great excursion.
Back on the train at about 6:30 greeted by warm facecloths and welcome drinks. At 7:30 the tour director gives a small talk about the history and story of the place you will be visiting the next day whilst tea and appetizers are served.
A 3-course dinner is then served at about 8 pm
The service is unique, the hospitality includes people opening doors for me as I move from cabin to cabin, constantly being offered tea / drinks / more food and constantly being asked if I need anything else. On the excursions, umbrellas are carried out for us and water is repeatedly offered. It is the first time toilet paper was given to me outside a restroom. Everything runs like clockwork.
There is always a choice between Indian and European / Western-style food. I’ve been choosing Indian options. My tummy is very happy indeed, way too happy actually as I’ve probably already put on three kilos already.
I happen to love Indian food so I’m definitely sorted.
India in itself is an amazing, amazing place, so much rich culture, so many experiences to savour, the people are lovely and friendly, the weather is great and the views are stunning.
Visting India through this train is unique in many ways, it allows you to visit different corners of India that would otherwise be impossible, it allows you to live in complete luxury and it destroys any chance of you being happy again when you return home. My visa for India is valid for 60 days I believe…. I think I need to make a return visit.