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Deccan Odyssey

The Deccan Odyssey – Maharashtra Splendour

12-day tailor-made rail & city-stay holiday from £5,700 pp incl. flights

Summary

Short description

This luxury rail journey takes you to the iconic sites of India's Maharashtra state, bookending the Ajanta Caves with bustling Mumbai and laid-back Goa

Highlights

  • Explore Mumbai with a full day tour that will take you from its bustling markets to the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Elephanta Island
  • Revel in the luxury of the Deccan Odyssey's plush carriages and traditional Indian hospitality
  • Marvel at maginificent, UNESCO-listed religious caves
  • Witness the splendours of Goa, India's famed beach state

In Brief

  • 2 Nights Mumbai
  • 7 Nights Deccan Odyssey
  • 1 Night Mumbai

About

Recommended for:
Beach | History & culture | Rail journey

Enjoy the sights of India aboard The Deccan Odyssey, one of India's most opulent rail journeys. This well-planned itinerary takes you to cities like Nashik and Kolhapur where you will do some fascinating site-seeing. Other highlights include discovering Sindhudurg, a picturesque ocean fort, and exploring the UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Ajanta and Ellora Caves.

Day by day itinerary

Day 1
Depart UK

Depart the UK on an overnight flight from London, arriving in Mumbai on day two.

Days 2-3
Arrive India (Mumbai)

Arrive in Mumbai and transfer to your hotel, where you will spend the first two nights of your holiday. Spend the first day at your leisure. On the second day, you will receive a full day tour, sightseeing the city. Visit the Gateway of India, before boarding a boat heading for Elephanta Island just one hour away. You'll be able to enjoy the rock-cut temples at this UNESCO World Heritage Site, estimated to have been carved somewhere between 450–750 AD. Afterwards, return to the city and head towards Mani Bhawan via the famous Marine Drive. Visit Mani Bhawan Museum, filled with the history of and about Mahatma Gandhi.

Afterwards, drive through Fort, the business district of Mumbai, and pass the High Court and university, before visiting Victoria Terminus. You'll then be able to soak up the bustling vibe of Mumbai's Crawford Market, enjoying the sights and sounds of the city en route. Crawford Market, named after Mumbai's first municipal commissioner, Arthur Crawford, is a covered market with a sizeable clock tower and steeple. Built in 1869, the market is adorned with stone fountains designed by Lockwood Kipling, while the outside walls demonstrate a fine display of friezes. After your tour finishes, return to your hotel for your final night.

Stay: The Oberoi, Mumbai (Deluxe)

Day 4
Board the Deccan Odyssey

Arrive in Mumbai, and meet at the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus. Enjoy a traditional Indian welcome with tikkas and garlands, before completing check-in formalities and boarding the Deccan Odyssey to settle into your cabin. Enjoy your welcome drink, and explore the train, which is filled with world-class facilities. The Deccan Odyssey has 21 plush carriages, including 11 air-conditioned deluxe cabins for international travellers that feature classical decor, with a mix of modern amenities and comforts.

Stay: The Deccan Odyssey (Superior)

Meals: B L D

Day 5
Nashik

Today, you’ll arrive in the holy city of Nashik, which is rapidly gaining the status of being the wine capital of the country. After breakfast, disembark and spend the morning walking along the Godavari Ghats observing several important Hindu rituals. Afterwards, drive to the Grover Zampa vineyards, for an exclusive tour. Walk through vines laden with Chenin, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grapes. Be taken through the age old 'methode traditionnelle' used to make one of the best known brands of sparkling wines in India. Allow the sommelier to acquaint your taste buds with their finest creations of white, red, rose and sparkling wines and experiment pairing them with your meal at the vineyards.

Stay: The Deccan Odyssey (Superior)

Meals: B L D

Day 6
Ellora Caves

Following breakfast on board, proceed to Ellora Caves - a centuries-old World Heritage site that perfectly displays India's religious history. The 34 caves here were carved out of the volcanic rocks of the Deccan and are distinctly split by religion - 12 are dedicated to Buddhism (6th-7th centuries), 17 are dedicated to Hinduism (8th-10th centuries) and five are dedicated to Jainism (10th-13th centuries). These fine sculptures are the work of priests and pilgrims who passed this ancient trade route, creating various spots of worship as they went. Take time admiring their rugged splendour, from the intricately carved with lotus, elephant and lions to 'tirthankaras' of Lord Mahavira. Once back on board, sit back, unwind and enjoy cocktails followed by a sumptuous dinner.

Stay: The Deccan Odyssey (Superior)

Meals: B L D

Day 7
Ajanta Caves

The Deccan Odyssey will arrive at the Jalagon station this morning. You will disembark and drive to the Ajanta Caves, another UNESCO World Heritage Site and architectural marvel. The 30 rock-hewn Buddhist caves at Ajanta have been masterfully carved, and are adorned with sculptures and paintings of Buddhist religious art. The rest of the day is at your leisure to relax and enjoy the activities on board. Watch a movie, learn the rules of 'carrom', a popular Indian board game, or book yourself a relaxing massage in the spa. In the evening, watch rural India slip past as you sip a sun downer before dinner.

Stay: The Deccan Odyssey (Superior)

Meals: B L D

Day 8
Kolhapur

Today, you’ll visit Kolhapur, an important and historical city in India. After an early lunch on board, disembark for a tour of the city. Visit the New Palace Museum, a lovely basalt and sandstone octagonal 19th century palace, the neo-Gothic Town Hall Museum, and local markets. Proceed for some tea before enjoying a Lavanya Sandhya - a vibrant folk performance. Next, visit the 1,300-year-old Mahalakshmi temple, and witness a traditional martial arts performance. Return to the Deccan Odyssey for dinner, as you depart for Goa.

Stay: The Deccan Odyssey (Superior)

Meals: B L D

Day 9
Goa

Today, the train will enter the beach state of Goa, which is known for its Portuguese influences, laid-back multi-cultural lifestyle and golden-sand beaches. After breakfast, disembark and drive to Fontainhas, the Latin Quarters in Panjim that have some beautifully preserved houses built in the Portuguese style. Continue to Ribandar, the erstwhile capital of Goa, for a walk through ancient churches and ruins of the Augustine tower. Drive to Sahakari spice plantation for a traditional Goan feast, before enjoying a Goan performance and tour of the plantation. Complete your day with a visit to an old Portuguese house before returning to the train, that will snake along the Konkan, one of the most scenic railway routes in the country.

Stay: The Deccan Odyssey (Superior)

Meals: B L D

Day 10
Sindhudurg

Over breakfast, savour breath-taking coastal scenery through the breakfast cart's window as you journey towards Sindhudurg. This 15th century ocean fort lies on a rocky island just off the coast of Malvan and draws tourists in with it's serene coastal beauty. But, the fort isn't the only pull to the area. Spend the rest of the day relaxing on Sindhudurg's beautiful beaches or take a leaisurely stroll along the alluring ocean front. Then it's back on board for dinner as the Deccan Odyssey heads back to Mumbai.

Stay: The Deccan Odyssey (Superior)

Meals: B L D

Day 11
Mumbai

Arrive back in Mumbai and disembark the Deccan Odyssey. Transfer back to your hotel for one final night in Mumbai, to be spent at your leisure.

Stay: The Oberoi, Mumbai (Deluxe)

Day 12
Depart India/Arrive UK

Transfer to the airport and board your return flight to the UK, before continuing your onward journey home.

Pricing

Any element of this itinerary can be adjusted to suit your needs. Just contact us to find out more.

Accommodation rating: Superior

12-day tailor-made rail & city-stay holiday from £5,700 incl. flights

Superior

Package includes: 

  • Complimentary UK airport lounge access
  • Return flights between London and Mumbai
  • Private airport and rail station transfers
  • 3 nights accommodation in a 5* (Deluxe) hotel on a B&B basis
  • 7 nights aboard the Deccan Odyssey train on a full-board basis including soft drinks
  • Guided train excursions inclusive of all entrance fees
  • Full day private Mumbai city tour

Terms & Conditions

Prices are per person based on two people sharing a twin/double room; prices are subject to availability and possible change; normal booking conditions apply.

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