Madras Mail

A journey by rail through Southern India aboard the Deccan Odyssey

Trip Level

The trip is rated Level 1, Easiest, and is appropriate for anyone in good health who is physically active. Light walking and hiking are required to scenic nature areas, local towns, villages, and sites of historical and cultural interest.

On a typical day the Deccan Odyssey will travel through the night, as you sleep in your private cabin. Disembarking after breakfast the following morning you will be whisked away by coach or minibus to  explore and  at  the  end  of  the  day  return to the sanctuary of your hotel-on-wheels, greeted by your cabin attendants with complimentary refreshments. 

A particular charm of the Deccan Odyssey  is the beautifully appointed restaurant cars, a delightful venue in which to enjoy meals skillfully prepared by the Executive Chef and his on board restaurant team using the very best ingredients locally sourced whenever possible. Depending on the number of guests on board, one or two of our restaurant cars will be on every departure.

Enjoy the pleasures of an on-train breakfast each morning - the wonderful aroma of freshly-baked bread permeates the dining car, a wide selection of pastries, cereals, freshly squeezed orange juice and cold plates are available from our bountiful buffet. Alternatively enjoy a cooked breakfast brought to your table by our waiting staff, all complemented by steaming hot tea and coffee.

If you are in need of a more relaxed start to the day, then opt for a continental breakfast basket with tea or coffee to enjoy at leisure in your cabin.

For lunch and dinner you will be welcomed by the on board team and enjoy fine food, great wines and attentive service in the welcoming atmosphere of the dining car. Deccan Odyssey offers a culinary experience that reflects the very essence of the places you visit, as well as highly accomplished international cuisine. Vegetarian and other dietary options are also available.

Meals at lunch and dinner are complemented by an excellent choice of wines from around the world. Meals on board are a relaxed affair as the restaurant cars can accommodate all our guests in a single sitting. Throughout the journey there is an informal dress code, so you can enjoy your culinary experiences in convivial and relaxed surroundings and with the open-seating policy you can dine wherever, and with  whomever, you please.

Some days will be spent partly or entirely on board the train providing an opportunity for guests to watch the landscape unfold.  The Deccan Odyssey offers  different  on  board  activities  and  facilities  so  you  might  spend  the  time  attending  talks  on  the  local  history  and  culture,  trying  your  hand  at  bridge,  improving  your  photographic  skills,  or  simply  soaking  up  the  atmosphere and enjoying afternoon tea in the Bar Lounge Car.

The social heart of the Deccan Odyssey is the Bar Lounge Car, a great place to relax and settle into the unhurried pace of life on board. Unwind in comfortable surroundings and watch the world go by as you get to know your fellow passengers and begin long-lasting friendships. Perhaps read a novel from our library to while away the time or challenge your friends to a game of bridge or backgammon.

Enjoy the delights of morning or afternoon tea in the Bar Lounge Car with delicious cookies freshly baked by our chefs.

It is here that your Tour Manager will also organize a program of activities. Passengers will receive printed daily itineraries throughout the tour detailing train arrival and departure timings, latest weather forecasts for the next destination and information on the following day’s excursions and activities. The occasional day will be spent entirely on board and the Bar Lounge Car and Restaurant Cars will host an entertaining and enlightening range of activities such as popular local folk songs and engaging talks by expert lecturers on local history and culture.

Choosing the Right Trip

We work hard to help you choose the right trip for you, paying attention to your individual interests, abilities, and needs. If you have questions about the level of comfort or any of the activities described in this itinerary, please contact us.


We are proud to have an exceptionally high rate of repeat travelers. For more information, we would be happy to put you in touch with a client who has traveled with us.