The Maharaja Express is a luxury tourist train owned and operated by the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation Ltd (IRCTC). The Maharaja Express is an award-winning luxury train that has grabbed the title for six consecutive years at the World Travel Awards. The journeys offered by Maharajas Express in India explore opulent heritage as well as architectural grandeur.
Maharaja Express handpicks its itinerary and takes its guests on a luxury expedition of some of the country’s best destinations. The luxury train service was started in March 2010. It provides facilities like Wi-Fi, attached bathroom, dining cars, bar, lounge and souvenir shop and the larger cabins have roll-top baths and spacious sitting rooms. LCD televisions, eco-friendly toilets, direct dial phones, DVD player, internet, individual climate control and electronic safes are available in each guest cabin.
The train can accommodate 88 guests at the same time. The carriage of the train are modelled after the personal carriages of the maharajas which were the epitome of luxury. During the days of the British Raj, the kings and princes had their own carriages whose uses were reserved for special occasions like hunting trips, royal weddings and state visits. Each cabin of the train is decorated with elegant tapestries and exquisite carvings, along with stylish mirror and jewel work.
The Maharajas’ Express comprises of 43 guest cabins which include 20 deluxe, 18 junior suites, 4 suites and 1 presidential suite, with the capacity to accommodate up to 88 passengers during every journey. The occupancy can be chosen as twin or double, depending on the type of bed you choose. Each of these cabins can accommodate 2 passengers at a time whereas, the presidential suite can accommodate up to 4 passengers.
Features of Maharaja Express:
- There are a total of 14 guest carriages in the Maharajas’ Express, one of the famous luxury trains in India.
- Each of these carriages have been named after precious stones like heera (diamond), moti (pearl), monga (coral), pukhraj (sapphire), neelam (blue sapphire) and feroza (turquoise).
- These 14 carriages are home to luxury cabins which are divided into four categories, deluxe cabins, presidential suites, junior suites and suites.
- Among these, it is the Presidential Suite which is the most coveted by guests. Known as Navratna, it takes the concept of luxury onboard even further. An entire carriage of the train is devoted to this suite, which consists of two bedrooms, a separate living area, dining room and modern private bathroom with a bath.
- The Maharajas’ Express also boasts two thematic fine dining restaurants which tell you what fine dining is all about.
- The two restaurants are “Mayur Mahal” (named after the national bird of India, peacock, also called mayur in the local language) and “Rang Mahal” (which means the Palace of Colours).
- Up to 42 guests can be accommodated in these restaurants at any time. The seating arrangements have also been made keeping in mind the needs and conveniences of the guests on-board.
- The restaurants offer a wide variety of cuisines, both Indian and international. You also have the option of opting for a Table d’hote meal.
- There are two bars in the train, a lounge bar and thematic bar. While the former is called The Rajah Club, the latter is called Safari Bar. Both these bars boast a rich collection of wine and spirits with comfortable seating arrangements
The voyages offered by Maharaja Express are as follows:
- Heritage of India: Starting from Mumbai, the train takes you through the medieval caves of Ajanta, forts and palaces of Rajasthan and the majestic Taj Mahal during the tour. The highlight of the tour includes cultural immersion during local sightseeing tours, insider experiences such as sundowner cocktails amidst sand dunes, elephant painting and joyrides and some shopping experiences among others. The destinations covered include Mumbai, Udaipur, Jodhpur, Bikaner, Jaipur, Sawai Madhopur (Ranthambore National Park), Agra and Delhi.
- Indian Panorama: Beginning and concluding in Delhi, the Indian Panorama tour takes you to Agra for a sojourn of Taj Mahal, on to the sacred city of Varanasi and its holy bathing Ghats on the banks of legendary Ganges. Group of Monuments at Khajuraho, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is another attraction offering a glimpse into an era of cultural and architectural brilliance of Chandelas. The six nights, seven days tour covers Delhi - Jaipur - Ranthambore - Fatehpur Sikri - Agra - Orchha - Khajuraho - Varanasi - Delhi.
- Treasures of India: Treasures of India is a three nights and four days tour across the famed Golden Triangle tour circuit of India going from the colourful bazaars and majestic forts of Rajasthan, to catching the glimpse of tigers prowling in the wild in Ranthambore National Park. Maharajas Express Treasures of India itinerary include visits to no less than 5 UNESCO World Heritage Sites along with insider experiences and shopping detours in Agra and Jaipur.
- The Indian Splendour: The journey spans over eight days and seven nights in the magnificence of Asia’s most luxurious train. Visit the monument of love- Taj Mahal, spot the tigers at Ranthambore and get soaked in the royal heritage of Rajasthan through the guided off train excursions that comprises of forts, bazaars and royal cuisine. The tour covers Delhi – Agra – Ranthambore – Jaipur – Bikaner – Jodhpur – Udaipur – Mumbai.