With two new routes, the Eastern & Oriental Express is making a comeback in Southeast Asia

Eastern Oriental Express

The Eastern & Oriental Express, A Belmond Train will begin running two seasonal round-trip excursions from Singapore that depart for Malaysia, Singapore’s northern neighbor, in February 2024.

Given that one of the most famous trains in the world has announced its return to Southeast Asian rails, travelers who enjoy luxurious rail rides now have a few additional destinations to check off their bucket lists.

The brand has now officially resumed operations in Southeast Asia having being had to halt them during the Covid-19 outbreak thanks to these channels. The round-trip Eastern & Oriental Express runs from Singapore’s Woodlands station through Malaysia, including stops at well-known locations like Penang, Langkawi, and the Taman Negara National Park.

Eastern Oriental Express

The 15 distinctive green and cream-colored carriages, which were formerly a common sight for train spotters in the area, have been redesigned, according to Belmond, the railway’s operator. Eight sleeping cars, two dining cars, a piano bar, and an open observation car are located in the rear of the train. Malaysian silks and embroidery are used as cultural references, and cherry wood paneling adds warmth throughout the carriages.

“The Pullman cabins are inspired by the radiance of Kuala Lumpur, boasting red sofas juxtaposed with blue cushions, drapery and pelmets that reflect the city’s dramatic skies, while the State cabins reflect Penang’s marine locale, with a bright blue and green color palette,” says a Belmond news release announcing the new routes. “The Presidential cabins celebrate regional opulence, with hues of gold and embroidered decor elements.”

Travelers will be offered modern Peranakan delicacies in the restaurant; this regional cuisine is renowned for its fusion of Chinese, Malay, Indian, and Eurasian ingredients and cooking techniques.

The name of the first of the two experiences is “Essence of Malaysia: A Gateway into Malay Culture.”
This three-night journey explores western Malaysia, passing through Kuala Lumpur on the way from Singapore to Penang and then up to the island of Langkawi. Visitors will take a private boat to Langkawi from the mainland’s Alor Setar. They can choose to go snorkeling in the Pulau Payar Marine Park after they arrive. The third day will see visitors traveling to Penang, another renowned island. From here, they can travel to the capital, George Town, where they can take in its illustrious street food culture and historic architecture.

Eastern Oriental Express

“Wild Malaysia: Exploring Sights Unseen” is the name of the second tour that is being offered, and it travels across the eastern part of the Malaysian peninsula.
A visit to the Taman Negara National Park is one among the attractions. One of the world’s oldest tropical rainforests, which is home to hundreds of species, including tigers and Sumatran rhinoceros, will be seen by train passengers. They can also take a photography workshop, embark on a jungle foraging excursion, or learn more about the activities of regional tiger conservation organizations. On day three, visitors travel to Penang in the west before flying back to Singapore. Both itineraries are three nights long, with Pullman cabin rates beginning at US$3,410 per person. Everything is included, including meals, a variety of drinks, entertainment, and activities.

People who are aware with the luxury train’s lengthy history in Southeast Asia might wonder why it doesn’t go up via Thailand to Bangkok. Before the pandemic, the Eastern & Oriental Express, a sister train of the renowned Venice-Simplon-Orient-Express, offered a number of routes between the two cities that included stops in well-known locations like the historic town of Kanchanaburi in western Thailand and Malaysia. The Eastern & Oriental Express made its inaugural journey from Bangkok to Singapore in 1993.

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