The Great Luxury Trains of India


Three brothers who reunite to travel across India on a luxury train named the Darjeeling Limited is the setting and plot to Wes Anderson’s 2007 film “The Darjeeling Limited”. Although the luxury railway in the movie is fictional, the concept is very real across India. For those who want to explore the country but avoid the crowded and unkempt roads, there’s a much better way.

Luxury Trains of India - The Maharajas' Express
Photo by Simon Pielow via Flickr

Luxury train is not a new concept in India, but one that’s growing in popularity. India is a beautiful country to explore, but congested airports and poor road conditions make the journey difficult. Recently, safety concerns about the country’s transport infrastructure have created a push for more to travel by luxury train, reports Forbes.

However, it’s not just convenience and safety that make these trains so popular. What a passenger gets to experience between destinations could be just as rewarding as the cities and tourist spots they travel to see. Here are some reasons for choosing a luxury train for travelling in India:

1. A Specific Itinerary

Similarly, the “Golden Chariot” train down south offers a glimpse of the historic glory of bygone times in South India. The Golden Chariot takes passengers along the historic sites in Karnataka state that were ruled by Hoysala, Chalukya and Vijayanagara dynasties. The “Pride of the South” route runs across Karnataka, while the “Southern Splendour” is an expanded route covering Tamil Nadu and Kerala states.

2. ‘First Class’ Travel

Luxury Trains India
Photo by Simon Pielow via Flickr

Similar to first class travel in the air, Indian luxury trains feature adequate space that doesn’t skimp in amenities. Cabins are well-furnished, comfortable and offer a variety of food and beverages. Since the passengers are typically diverse, the food served is both Indian and international. These trains even offer Wi-Fi, though it’s not the most reliable!

3. Safety First

Unfortunately, the news about passenger safety in India hasn’t been pleasant. Crimes against both Indian citizens and foreign travellers have caused a drastic decrease in tourism, especially female travellers (Forbes). Travelling by luxury train adds an extra level of security and peace of mind. Taking on the airports and bus stations in India, depending on the region, could leave tourists vulnerable. Moving from city to city by the same train takes that risk out of the equation.

4. When In Rome…

Riding a luxury train in India is like driving the Autobahn in Germany. Like in the movie “The Darjeeling Limited”, luxury trains of India are now part of the country’s culture and one of the best ways to see the region. If some rough roads are all that’s keeping you away from this great country, it’s time to go ahead and start making new plans!

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