Operating since 2010, the Maharajas' Express is the most luxurious train in India and offers an excellent range of excursions throughout the destinations it visits.
Palace on Wheels
Travelling on the Palace on Wheels provides a unique and memorable experience, reminiscent of travel during the days of the Raj. Operating through Rajasthan since 1982, this characterful train consists of 14 coaches, including 56 comfortable cabins, two restaurants and numerous other facilities. The ‘khidmatgars’ (personal attendants) and other staff are all very friendly, sociable and keen to interact with guests about the train’s fascinating heritage and all the places which will be visited en route.
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There are 56 Deluxe cabins on board, all comfortable and characterful with air conditioning, a safe, television and WiFi. All have en suite bathrooms with showers. Each coach has a personal attendant, to ensure guests have everything they need, including complimentary tea, coffee and water. A day by day information pack is also provided in-room. Storage is a little limited and the rooms are understandably compact, but there are plenty of other areas of the train to enjoy when on board.
The Palace on Wheels winds its way through Rajasthan for seven nights, departing every Wednesday from Delhi’s Safdarjung station. Taking in key cities, a national park and iconic landmarks such as the Taj Mahal makes it a thorough and well planned route which ticks all the boxes.
Food and drink
There are two restaurants on board, both offering Indian and continental menus. Guests can pick dishes from each for variation and enjoy dining with the traditional, Palace on Wheels embossed cutlery, crockery and condiments, which is a nice touch. If the train is full, there may need to be two sittings but all guests will be notified. There is also a bar where your welcome talk takes place; it’s a social hub where guests gather to share travel tales and enjoy drinks and complimentary snacks.
Facilities and activities
On arrival all guests can enjoy a welcome drink, musical performance and talk to commence the journey. Information packs also provide plenty of insight into the excursions on offer. Excursions are in groups (maximum 35 people) with English-speaking guides in each destination; guests are also welcomed to a new location with traditional, regional entertainment at each station. Water and hand gel are offered and hand towels are a welcome gesture after each tour.
The first luxury train to offer this kind of trip through India, the Palace on Wheels is full of charm and offers a fantastic route through northern India. The friendly staff and social atmosphere on board make it a wonderful place to stay although due to its age, it can feel dated in some parts.
Delhi tour ideas
Places & hotels on the map
Alternative places to stay nearby
Where possible, we like to offer a range of accommodation for each stop of your trip, chosen by our specialists as some of their favourite places to stay. To help you make the right choice, we give each property a rating based on its facilities and service, but we also look for hotels with distinct character or a location that can’t be bettered.
Experiences while staying here
The following activities are designed to give you the most authentic experiences of the area where you’re staying. We work with local guides, who use their knowledge and often a resident’s eye to show you the main sights and more out-of-the-way attractions. Our specialists can also suggest outdoor pursuits and activities, such as cooking classes, that will introduce you to the traditions of the area’s inhabitants.
This night walk around Chandni Chowk in Old Delhi shows you the capital when it is most alive, in the evening.
Your guide will take you on a cycle rickshaw through the Chandni Chowk Bazaar area. This allows you to visit the narrow winding alleys lined with shops selling all manner of items.