Luxury train operator Orient-Express
is to feature a new ‘Thai
Explorer’ itinerary in northern Thailand in its Eastern & Oriental Express
programme for 2004. The E&O, which will also continue to operate its
traditional journey between Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur, Penang and Singapore, celebrated its 10th anniversary this past September.
The new two night itinerary was first offered to E&O customers during the
SARS epidemic that recently affected South East Asia as an alternative to the
Bangkok – Singapore route. The new route which is Bangkok – Ayutthaya –
Chiang Mai – Lampang – Kanchanaburi (River Kwai) – Bangkok was popular
with passengers so the decision was made to make it a regular feature.
Next year there will be seven ‘Thai Explorer’ departure dates – 9 February, 8
March, 26 April, 27 September, 11 October, 25 October and 22 November, leaving Bangkok on Monday morning and returning on Wednesday
afternoon. Prices start at US$1,250 per person based on two adults sharing a
Pullman compartment (inclusive of all meals on board and off train guided
The Monday departure date means long haul travellers can arrive in
Bangkok at the weekend and spend a night or two in a hotel before their train trip. It also ensures that E&O guests see Ayutthaya, the former capital of
Siam, on a traditionally quiet day.
As well as offering guests the most luxurious and stylish way to see the
exotic landscapes of Thailand the itinerary includes off train guided tours of
some of the most interesting sights in the north of the country.
Commenting on the new itinerary chief executive of Venice
Simplon-Orient-Express, Nick Varian said, “This is a great new addition to
our E&O programme which gives long haul travellers the opportunity to
explore the beauty of northern Thailand combined with Bangkok, before perhaps going on to one of the country’s many beaches or islands. It also
offers past E&O customers a chance to return to the train to experience
Special Offer – Passengers who chose to travel the traditional Singapore to
Bangkok route, combined with the Thai Explorer, in a State compartment will
get three FREE nights at the luxurious Peninsula Hotel in Bangkok in between itineraries.
Summer Promotion – Passengers who book a Pullman
compartment on E&O from Singapore to Bangkok (or visa versa) travelling
between April & September 2004, will get one FREE night in Bangkok and
Singapore at either end of the trip. Those booking a State compartment receive ONE additional night in either city.