Till recently, planes were the epitome of luxury travel. However, becoming cramped and perhaps boring, the hottest luxury travel mode is a luxury train. The Maharajas’ Express is one such train that attempts to recreate royalty and pageantry of the Indian Maharaja of the colonial era.
The Indian Railways Catering & Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) has done a great job in starting this luxury train that is now the pride of India. Started in March 2010, the train offers 7 distinct tours that cover various states and some of the most important tourist destinations of North and South India. Each tour is meticulously planned to give travelers a deep insight into the rich culture of India, throwing in a few instances of thrill like a visit to wildlife national park, canoe cruise, elephant riding, and more.
Tours that spell pomp and pleasure
The train arrives with pomp at a new destination each morning to let its ‘royal guests’ set off for off-board excursions. They include a visit to forts, palaces, World Heritage Sites, royal dining, special events like Taj – The Mohabbat Show, Elephant Polo Games, shopping, and more.
Tourists have a choice – they can either spend quiet moments inside the train or go shopping and mingle with the local crowd, exploring the place a bit more apart from the scheduled sightseeing.
Most of the tours span 8 days and 7 nights. There are short tours too. They are of 4 days and 3 nights. Each tour of North India features a visit to the Golden Triangle tourist circuit (Delhi, Agra, and Jaipur).
‘Royal guests’ of the maharajas train get luxury transportation during their off-board excursions. All tours are well-guided. The guides are licensed and experienced. Although the train runs its tours between October and April, the train is available for luxury charter tours India all year round.
Luxury travel is best experienced when the tour is customized as per your wishes. The entire tour itinerary is charted out according to your likes and preferences, with you giving the specifications and details of the tour. Doesn’t this seem nice?
You can include or exclude destinations as per your wish. That’s why trains like the Maharaja offer a variety of tour itineraries that provide something for everybody. Say, you want a spiritual tour. You can choose an itinerary that includes a trip to holy city Varanasi. If you love wildlife, you pick an itinerary that includes a trip to Ranthambore wildlife national park. If you fancy caves and natural terrains, you can choose a tour that includes a trip to Ajanta Caves.
While planning a journey in luxury train know that such trains run only on fixed days and dates. You must arrive at the platform sufficiently in advance of the train’s departure time. Trains like the Maharaja arrange a red carpet welcome for its passengers. The welcome is accompanied with music, teeka, and a garland of flowers. You get a porter for luggage. So, be present well in advance to enjoy the warm welcome.