Perhaps one of the most glamorous of journeys I have ever had the pleasure of experiencing has to be that of the Orient Express! Having been a huge Agathe Christie fan all my adult life, I couldn’t wait for the day when I would finally get to travel this worldwide renown train through the delightful backdrop of some of Europe’s most breath-taking scenery. I was desperate to experience for myself the train that Christie herself was so compelled to include in her murder mystery!
Believe me, when I say that watching it and reading about the beauty of the Orient Express it is one thing, but there is nothing more exhilarating than being present and a part of this historical adventure of a lifetime.
The Venice Simplon-Orient-Express
The actual Orient Express which members of the public now travel on is a refurbished and redesigned set of carriages named The Venice Simplon-Orient-Express. Designed to recreate the art deco era of Christie’s most intriguing mystery tale, this is a succession of tastefully decorated wagons that transport all travelers back in time to that period of glamour and elegance. With various journeys available on the route, travelers can select their intended destination beforehand to ensure they get to see and experience the exact sights they wish to view throughout their intended journey.
The Orient Express Timetable
With nine stunning departure and destination stations travelers can choose where they want to start and end their Orient Express journey to suit their own preferences with stations located in:
My Experience Aboard the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express
For my personal Orient Express trip, I choose the favorite Paris To London journey. I had intended to have a vacation based in France for a few days before boarding the Orient at Paris and heading for London. The City of London was to be my final destination for yet another long weekend experiencing the many offerings that it had to offer its tourists. This meant in between two beautiful cities, I would be traveling in style for a whole week onboard one of the most beautiful trains the world has ever seen.
Greeted on arrival with a complimentary glass of sparkling white wine my trip indeed started off in style as my dedicated Steward showed me to my private room. The one thing the Orient Express staff know how to do so well is make their guests feel welcome. With everything explained to me about my beautiful cabin, I was then left to settle in and prepare for the journey ahead.
Besides the scenery and the related history, I do believe that many people also choose to make the Orient their method of travel for the sheer tantalizing selection of food and exceptional dining experience which it offers throughout the journey! With a five-star culinary MasterChef at the helm, every occasion is a reason to celebrate onboard the Orient. From extravagant breakfasts to the most superbly used locally sourced fresh ingredients for every evening meal, there is even a champagne bar to keep you refueled in between dishes!
At night times, I found myself wandering back to my compartment to see everything had been taken care of for my night’s sleep by my dedicated Steward. While you are away from your carriage they come in to perform a quick sweep of the area and put away your sofa, so your room is ready for the evening. Climbing into a bed complete with freshly laundered silk sheets, I was amazed at how I could quickly fall into a deep slumber onboard a train that was moving – but I think I experienced some of the best night’s sleep ever during this trip!
Personally speaking, you become so engrossed in the beauty of your surroundings once aboard the Orient that you tend to forget at some point that the train stops to take in the local areas which it passes through! Though, when you have taken advantage of the many food delights it has to offer this is often a great excuse to get out and walk off a few of the pounds you have put on that very day! Once back on board the atmosphere is charged, and I found myself getting to know so many of the people who were also taking this very same trip. They say that many a wonderful friendship is forged aboard this journey, and they weren’t wrong.
Yet, what I was also impressed with was how immersed I became in the culture of every passenger I was acquainted with. As you travel through some of the most fantastic scenery I believe I have ever witnessed, you get to know your fellow passengers very well and come to realize that people indeed travel from all over the world just to be a part of this amazing experience!
Experience for Yourself the Trip of a Lifetime
Though I remain slightly jealous that, in 2018, The Venice Simplon-Orient-Express will be offering several Grand Suites, I can’t help but feel that I will at some point in time return to Europe to take yet another trip on this breathtaking set of carriages.
That is the beauty of this type of vacation. You can pick and choose your destinations with the idea of covering as many of the most famous sights during your trip as you so wish. That way you will never get bored because there is always a different route to take and therefore amass an array of separate scenery to take in on every journey.
Perhaps the one piece of advice I would offer to anybody interested in undertaking such a journey is to prepare financially for it quite far ahead. With prices understandably ranging in the field of £3,500 euros per passenger, this is one trip of a lifetime that comes with a hefty price tag attached to it – but take it from me, it’s worth every one of those euros!
If it is a glamorous vacation set against a breathtaking backdrop that has the power to instantly catapult you back to the good old days, then look no further than The Venice Simplon-Orient-Express for your next vacation.