The Deccan Odyssey's sheer luxury is a sight to behold. Everything in the train reflects the ways of Indian Royalty. The plush interiors, an awesome cuisine and grate sites to see makes the journey memorable. This luxurious train transports its guests on a remarkable sojourn of a land shining in legions grandeur - serene beaches, magnificent forts - palaces and experiencing divine tales etched in colossal rocks. A weeklong royal journey is through some of the best places in Maharashtra namely Mumbai, Sindhudurg, Tarkarli, Goa, Kolhapur, Aurangabad, Ellora, Chandrapur (Tadoba Wildlife), Wardha (Sevagram), Ajanta and Nasik. The objective of running "The Deccan Odyssey" train is primarily to showcase the best of tourism assets of Maharashtra like pristine beauty of Konkan coast, the art, the culture, the wildlife, the heritage (including world heritage sites of Ajanta - Ellora) of Maharashtra as well as Maharashtra's local arts, crafts and cuisine.
The train has 21 coaches, out of which 12 are passenger cars accommodating 8 people per coach (10 passenger Cars, 4 coupes per coach - 2 Presidential Suite Cars, 2 coupes per coach), 1 Conference Car, 2 Dinning Cars, 2 Generator Cars with Luggage Store, 1 Staff, spare Car, 1 Spa Car, 1 Bar Car. The train has on-board facilities like T.V., Cable connection with central audio disc player, cell phones, Channel Music, Foreign exchange facilities, etc. The present capacity of the train is 80 pax
The route has been fixed as Mumbai - Sindhudurg - Goa - Kolhapur - Aurangabad(Ellora) - Chandrapur (Tadoba Wildlife Sancturary)- Wardha (Sevagram)- Jalgaon(Ajanta) - Nashik and Mumbai. It will be a seven days round trip starting on every Wednesday from Mumbai. The seasonal tours will operate every year between October to April month.
The itinerary of the tour is broadly as follows :
1st Day- Mumbai
2nd Day- Sindhudurg Nagari
3rd Day- Goa- Visit to St. Augustine Church, Basilica of Bom Jesus Church, Se Cathedral Church, St.Francis of Assissi a Museum of Goan antiques and visit to Fontanhas the Latin Quarters at Panjim.
4th Day- Goa- Visit to Mhalsa and Mangeshi a Hindu Temples, Sahakari Spice Farm, Menezes Braganza House at Chandoli village.
5th Day- Kolhapur- New Palace, Museum, Bhavani Mandap Mahalaxmi Temple - Shalini Palace.
6th Day- Aurangabad-Daulatabad-Ellora Caves-Bibi-ka-Maqbara
7th Day- Ajanta Caves / Nasik
8th Day- Mumbai.
In the above programme, the train takes you through various facets of tourism attractions of Maharashtra
The coast of Sindhudurg is known for its natural beauty and greenery as well as a special kind of cuisine, which is predominantly based on seafood and spices locally known as Malvani or Konkani cuisine. The Goa, an already established tourist destination needs no special introduction. Next on the itinerary is Kolhapur, a city of many great attractions. This city is a unique blend of culture, history, nature - industry. Most of the venues Bhavani Mandap, Mahalaxmi Temple, Shalini Palace, New Palace, Museum etc. speak for themselves.
From Kolhapur train moves to Aurangabad - a city founded by none other than the Mogul emperor The Aurangajeb which is predominantly a cultural centre of Maharashtra. This is also a place where the world heritage sites of Ajanta, Ellora known for the wall painting or frescoes painted on the walls of caves carved out of solid basalt rock and have briefed the vagaries of time for centuries together are located. At Ajanta - the Buddhist sculptures vividly described lives and legend of Buddha and the stone colours even today spells bounds the visitor. The Ellora caves - a complex of Hindu, Buddhist and Jain caves are the living example of supreme architecture prevalent in those time and the Kailas Temple, the best of all and the greatest monolithic sculpture - the world has ever seen is a marvel in itself. Itinerary also includes the visit to Tadoba Wildlife Sanctuary which is one of the best in India. It is the second Tiger Reserve project in the State. This lush green forest has variety of animals and abundant flora and fauna. The sanctuary also an ornithologist's paradise with a varied diversity of Migratory birds and Water Birds. Gandhi Ashram is yet another attraction of the itinerary. Sevagram or the 'Village of Service' is a small and unpretentious village symbolizing the Gandhian way of life. At Sevagram one can understand the Mahatma Gandhiji's way of life which has inspired many leaders of the world. Like Varanasi, Nashik is yet another colourful pilgrim centre in India. A holy place that is lined with a number of ancient temples on the bank of river Godavari.
Maharashtra - it has, for five thousand years, seen various dynasties beyond Vindhya ruling over the Deccan Plateau from the days of Rashtrakutas, Vakatakas, Satvahanas, Shilaharas, Chalukyas, Yadavas, Marathas, Portuguese and English. All these dynasties have left behind their marks in the forms of monument and heritage sites, the wadas, the palaces, the churches, the temples, the synagogues, the mosques. The State with 27 wild life sanctuaries, 4 National Parks, numerous religious sites, places of scenic beauty, scores of beaches, thousands of forts and unique culture depicted in its folk arts, the colourful festivals, its cuisine, handicraft. A tourist will get a glimpse of all these just in seven days, a capsule of Maharashtra - the Great State.