Travelling the world, one adventure at a time. Follow the UK's leading solo adventure travel blogger, Dave Brett on his travels around the world. An Adventure travel blog that features travel tips and advice, inspirational stories, travel videos and travel photography that will help you inspire and plan your next trip abroad.
If you happen to be visiting Jordan for a week of adventure, there’s a good chance that you will fly in to Amman airport which is the main airport hub of Jordan.
Be sure to set some time aside before you start your adventure around Jordan to explore the capital city of Amman, as the city has a lot to offer even for a 24 hour visit and you should totally check out the city if you can spare the time.
I’ve put together a fun 24 hour guide to Amman sharing with you what I got up to on my visit in the hope that you can also explore Amman on a free day before or after your trip to Jordan.
Where to stay: Grand Hyatt
If you’re looking for a place to stay in Amman, you can find many different types of accommodation options.
I found that a lot of the popular western hotel chains have hotels in Amman – and at very reasonable prices as well.
After a long flight, it’s great to have a good cosy night’s sleep, a buffet breakfast and access to a swimming pool which you can enjoy in the morning.
Why not splash out a little without worrying about breaking the bank, which is a great option in Amman for travellers.
Amman Citadel for amazing views
For the best views of Amman, be sure to check out the Amman Citadel, which offers a collection of Roman ruins and incredible views of the surrounding city from above of the Amman skyline.
This will give you a better idea of the pure scale and size of Amman as you can see surrounding houses as far as the eye can see.
Amman is a pretty massive city when it comes to population, and also for variety of cultural experiences.
Totally worth the trip if you have the time as you can get a better understanding of the pure size and population of Amman with the big overview.
Hashem Falafel for the best local cuisine
I don’t want to hype up this location too much, but Hashem served up not only the best falafel I’ve ever had but also the most amazing humus I’ve ever had in my life as well.
This spot is a true gem of a find, and you simply must dine here at this street side vendor for one of the best and most affordable meals you will have in Amman. Be sure to grab a glass of mint tea as well to wash it all down.
Even the king of Jordan is said to have eaten here and also happens to be a fan of the place, so I can’t be wrong!
Habibah knifeh for a sweet treat
I have no idea what this sweet treat is but the locals seem to love it as the line is always going around the corner.
Habibah is the place to try knifeh which is a Jordanian desert. It reminds me of curd cheese as the base with a drizzle of syrup on top could be described as a crumble-like substance.
It’s rather bizarre, but tastes great warm and worth a try on your trip around Amman.
Shop till you drop at Al Gaza Street
Bring your bargaining hat along to this popular street trade area called Al Gaza Street. You can pretty much find everything here from fresh juices, to coal for your hubbly bubbly shish pipe.
Great place to pick up unique gifts to bring back home. I managed to pick up a leather belt for £3 which is obviously a complete bargain. You never know what you might find!
A great place to pass the time as well, which is lucky as you can get lost wandering around all the different stalls rather easily.
Spend the evening along rainbow street
Rainbow street comes to life in the evening time and is seen as a place for Young Jordanians to meet up, socialise and catch up whilst dining at one of the hip establishments along the street.
You can find many western food establishments along this street – from pizza to sushi and more.
You can also discover the street art scattered around this area and wonderful views over the city.
Be sure to also make your own DIY ice pop over at Mr Lollies where you can create a number of different combinations. Perfect for the ‘Gram!
Grab a quick shawarma snack
A popular street side snack to enjoy, be sure to grab a shawarma when hunger calls.
This affordable local treat is a combination of flat bread, sliced lamb and a mixture of salad and yoghurt.
So good you might want to have two so make sure you pace yourself.
Explore Al Balad Bizzare
If you were still after some shopping time sure to check out Al Balad Bizzare which has a number of different stalls to choose from selling spices and goods.
You can even bottle your own perfume which is fun to do if you’re after creating your own unique smell.
Check out the roman theatre
Right in the city centre you can find a randomly placed Roman theatre, standing in all its glory near the bus station.
Be sure to pass by and check it out on your walking tour of Amman as it’s a beautiful sight to take in for a moment from a distance.
King Abdullah Mosque Amman
The King Abdullah Mosque is an Amman landmark with its iconic blue-dome standing out amongst the skyline. The mosque can house up to 7000 worshippers, with a further 3000 in the courtyard space.
The mosque also happens to be one of the only mosques open for non-Muslim visitors in Amman and tours are run outside of worship times for those who wish to have a look inside.
End your day with hubbly bubbly and tea
A great way to end your visit in Amman is to find a cosy cafe at the end of your walking day to grab a fresh mint tea, fire up a hubbly bubbly pipe and take in the hustle and bustle of the city which is Amman.
I hope you have some time to stop off in the city for at least 24 hours to take in the city for a day. It’s for sure worth a look around before you explore more of what Jordan has to offer. Happy travels.
St Christopher’s Inn have opened up the first ever capsule hostel in the UK at their award-winning At the Village in London Bridge.
Over a month of travelling around Japan on a JR Rail pass, I stayed at quite a few capsule hostels along the way.
So when I heard St Christopher’s Inn were bringing capsule hostels to my hometown, I was very interested to see how the concept would work in London.
Generally, the more alternative, central and affordable your accommodation is in London, the better.
It’s a win win for travellers to have these kind of cheap and convenient options, especially when it’s super fun to be right in the centre of the city too.
Budget travellers always get to have some of the most fun in my opinion.
Here is my review of how my stay went and why you should give the capsule room a try on your next trip to London.
Getting to St Christopher’s Inn, London Bridge
St Christopher’s Inn, London Bridge is perfectly located in the heart of the city of London. Simply head to London Bridge tube station and take an easy 6 minute walk past Borough market.
For those travelling from London Heathrow Airport, grab the Piccadilly line to Green Park then switch to the Jubilee line to reach London Bridge.
Awesome gadgets at your bed side
Want to charge your phone or laptop? Each pod has its own plugs and USB ports so you can make sure your batteries are fully charged for your adventure around town.
Each pod has a funky LED moonlight ambient panel, so you can change the colour of your pod to match your mood.
Each pod also contains an automatic ventilation system to keep your pod cool as you snooze away in dream land.
Easy to chat with other fellow travellers
From my experience with capsule hostels in Japan I’ve found them to be not very social, as you normally have to remain quiet in the pod room and keep the lights down which makes it hard to meet others.
St Christopher’s Inn have designed their room with 26 sleeping pods to be pleasantly social for travellers who want to meet others by creating a common area at the front of the pod room.
This gives you plenty of space to meet and chat with some other travellers.
Super cool – as this is what you want to do when you travel around Europe right? Meeting new friends from around the world and chatting about future travel plans and what to do around London is one of the best parts of any trip.
You have your own private space
Each pod has a privacy curtain creating your own private space to snooze or Facetime with your family back home. I like the size of the pods as you have a lot of space to move around.
It’s like you have your own private space within a hostel all to yourself. I’ve heard some other travellers have even used the space to do morning yoga!
The pod room also has it’s own bathroom area with showers, toilets and hair dryers for you to use.
Free breakfast in the morning
Want to know a little trick? If you book your St Christopher’s Inn room via the St Christopher’s Inn app you automatically unlock free breakfast for your stay.
Not only do you get free breakfast but the best prices are available using the app, so be sure to have a look when making your booking.
You can also find a free daily walking tour that departs from the hostel if you fancy getting your introduction to London by foot.
Belushis London Bridge is the place to be
The hostel is located above one of the best bars in the London bridge area – Belushis. Great food, drinks and entertainment are waiting, and its an awesome venue for catching up with sports games you don’t want to miss out on.
Use your room card to grab some discounts and meet other travellers over a bite to eat.
Starting from £25 upwards depending on the dates, you’ve found yourself a wonderful and affordable option for your next stay in London. I had a wonderful stay, and it definitely wasn’t boring at all!
Let’s do something a bit daring. We’re going to put Europe and Canada head to head for the title of Best Place to do a Ski Season.
Winter comes around faster each year, and many seasonal employees are already hiring, so you can’t waste any time longer on deciding which slopes you want to spend your winter season on.
The common choice for many is Europe It’s just a short flight away and you’ve been there before on many ski holidays with friends and family so you know it like the back of your hand.
Why would you look at going anywhere else?
The below post will have you seriously considering putting Canada on the ‘Seasonnaire List’ (doesn’t everyone have one of those?).
We’ll look at how things are different to what you already know and what more you need to know before you go.
We’ll bet your bottom dollar you’ll be digging out that passport and surfing Skyscanner before you’ve reached the end of this post, we’re sure!
Skies, check. Boots, check. Snorkel…check? Yep, make sure you pack the latter as Canada takes the cake for snow, both quantity and quality.
Let’s start with the obvious one, quantity. When it comes, it dumps. This spurs commonly heard phrases such as ‘powder day’ and ‘let’s ride some pow’ within earshot of anyone even slightly powder inclined.
Canadian resorts such as Whsitler or Banff benefit from more snow than European counterparts. Most regions of the country are known for having massive annual snowfalls, sometimes receiving two to three times more snow than in the Alps.
You know those five metres you were delighted with in Europe?
Well, prepare to have your mind blown. All that aside, you can sit back and relax knowing no matter where you go you can safely expect epic amounts of snow.
Canada is renowned having the lightest fluffiest and driest snow in the world. It’s specialty is champagne powder, a super-light, insanely dry and fluffy variety caused by low temperatures and snow-liquid ratios.
It’s so light and dry it’s near impossible to make snowballs with (yep, you’ll have to find a different way to entertain the ski school kids)! Don’t overthink the science. You really have to ski it to believe it.
Less Busy, Modern Resorts
Canadian resorts are nothing short of world-class. They all boast user-friendly experiences that emanate/exude quality service and organisation.
Think water coolers and tissue dispensers in lift queues and strategically placed benches to rest those achy quads after that unbroken eight mile descent.
One of the distinct advantages of working a ski season in Canada is the obvious lack of crowds in resorts, yet still having all the amenities of the world’s leading resorts.
Less crowds, mean shorter lift lines, uninterrupted slopes, and ultimately more time on snow because that’s what you’re there for, right?
Culture Without Language Barriers
Canadians are one of the friendliest and most polite bunch of people on the planet. In fact, “friendly and nice” basically defines the nation’s character!
Prepare to be wowed as strangers strike up conversations with each other in lift lines and are never short of an apology even if completely unnecessary!
We’re sure there are seasonaires out there who will stand by the European apres ski and yes, it is hard to beat, but Canada’s apres (including the food) is usually better value for money and that’s what we’re after – making your hard earned wages go further!
Plentiful Work Opportunities
Most Canadian resorts do their hiring prior to the season commencing so consider looking into employment well in advance to get the best chance possible. Finding resort work in the ski industry is exactly as you’d find work in any other industry.
You apply for the job by sending in your CV and cover letter. Make sure your CV is a succinct one-pager visual one with colours, a (clean and tidy) photo to ensure it stands out from the crowd (or pile, in this case).
Our advice would be to go the extra mile. Do some research, pick up the phone and have a conversation with who you need to.
Wages in Canada are on the lower end of the scale, but as is the cost of living so it evens out nicely.
Everyone needs to start somewhere and it’s relatively easy to work your way up into the next pay bracket if you set your mind to it.
Training And Working As A Ski Instructor
For budding instructors, or newly qualified instructors Canada is no a no-brainer.
The system used for instructor certification is more straightforward, streamlined and you won’t need to sacrifice years of your life to acquire the necessary qualifications to teach.
While you may not earn a wage as high as you could in Europe, it’s more than enough to live off and the cost of training is also significantly lower.
One huge advantage for those looking to become instructors is that Canada opens up the possibility to doing instructor internship courses.
Ski (and snowboard) instructor internships are a relevantly new type of instructor training program, aimed at those who need training and employment.
The overcome the catch-22 situation of no experience, no job, In short, the ski schools executing the instructor training are encouraged to hire their course participants on completion of the courses, giving candidates a chance to experience work as an instructor and giving the ski schools qualified instructors.
There are several companies who organise internship courses throughout Canada including WE ARE SNO, one of the largest providers.
So there you have it – the rundown
Surely your passport’s poised and you want to lock down and book those cheap flights to Canada. Europe certainly has many plus points, in fact it is often a better holiday destination. However, if you’re planning on experiencing a full winter, Canada might be a better option to work, stay and play.
For holiday makers and travellers looking for the best holiday action to be found in Australia, heading to the state of Queensland is a bit of a no brainer.
Spending time in this beautiful north-east state is a great way to experience some of the natural beauty to be found on Aussie coasts.
There are beautiful islands to be explored off the coast, lush forests, a rich history of indigenous culture and thriving cities with plenty of opportunities to inject some culture into your Australia trip.
Queensland’s capital Brisbane is flanked on both sides by the incredible surfing beaches of the Gold and Sunshine Coasts.
The city also has a dazzling array of cafes, restaurants and cultural draws that will keep you fully entertained before you head off out into nature.
Covering the continent’s northeast, and with a coastline stretching nearly 7,000km, Queensland has a ton of natural wonders.
Not least of these is the Great Barrier Reef, the world’s largest coral reef system which hosts thousands of marine species.
The city of Cairns is the gateway to the reef, and also to the tropical Daintree Rainforest full of animal and plant life that will blow your mind.
With something special for anyone looking to escape the UK and go on an adventure down South, Queensland has got to be a pretty good choice for when you’re trying to pick out a primary destination within Australia.
For more info to help you book your trip, check out this When To Go To Queensland calendar guide for a handy month by month lowdown telling you what’s going on and when the best time to visit is for the kind of trip you want.
There’s something for everyone in this beautiful state, and a bit of forward planning will mean you get the most out of your trip.
Here is a rough guide to give you some ideas on what you could get up to along the East coast of Australia:
It’s an area of outstanding natural beauty where you can go snorkelling and scuba diving and be taken to an underwater world of magic.
Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park is a fascinating insight into the indigineous culture of this country with stories told with music and dance.
You can take a walk down the Cairns Esplanade for stunning bars and restaurants, and a swimming lagoon to boot.
Cairns has everything you could want for nature lovers.
Brisbane – the sunny city of Queensland
Brisbane is the capital city of Queensland, and in this gorgeous cultural destination you can find all sorts of night life, city delights, casinos, museums, cafes, restaurants and more.
There’s man made beaches to relax in style along the coastline, riverside gardens and lots of outdoor places to eat.
It’s the third biggest city in Australia meaning that there is plenty to do and plenty of interesting people to meet.
A night out in Brisbane is guaranteed to take you to some hip places, as this city is pretty up and coming and has the kind of atmosphere Melbourne did 20 years ago.
Gold Coast – Home to Surfer’s Paradise
The Gold Coast is home to Surfer’s Paradise in Queensland. You just have to give some surfing lessons a go in this iconic location, and you’ll find hundreds of top quality schools and instructors ready to help you crest that wave.
There’s many nature trails to be explored too, alongside inland canals and pretty waterways.
The Gold Coast is also an incredible party spot to dance the night away with cool surfer dudes and Aussie chicks on sandy beaches til the sun comes up.
It’s easy to find a Gold Coast club crawl to take you to some of the biggest spots.
This place is also a beautiful escape to nature, and is used as a location for I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here.
Once you see how beautiful this place is as a holiday destination though instead you will want to get in here and stay for a while!
The nature parks close to the Gold Coast host a stunning variety of species and are worth visiting.
Check out O’Reilly’s Tree Top Walk nestled high within the World Heritage-listed National Park.
Suitable for guests of all ages, this world’s first forest suspension bridge provides you with an incredible opportunity to observe life in the rainforest canopy at close range.
Whitsunday Islands – Paradise awaits!
The Whitsunday islands are 74 islands between the coast of Queensland and the Great Barrier Reef.
Grab a catamaran and explore the one of best beaches in the world – Whitehaven beach.
Here you can go diving and snorkeling and discover some beautiful marine life and relax in the sun in this world class location.
Thank you for reading my guide to Queensland Australia and wishing you a wonderful future adventure trip to the gold coast.
After many years of frequent flying, I’ve been able to pick up a few tricks of the trade along the way.
One of these top tips I would like to share with you is when it’s best to book flights online for the cheapest rates.
Through a whole lot of trial and error over the years, I’ve been able to work out the sweet spot for sealing the deal on flights at great prices.
Opodo have even gone a step further and done some detailed research into this subject.
Have a good look through this helpful infographic – it really lays out the evidence for booking your flight 6 weeks before if you’re well in advance (or 2 weeks before if you’ve got to book something soon), as well as the best days of the week and month in the year to book for different types of flights.
Opodo have found that you can often save up to 48% off your flight price when you book 42 days in advance. Also, last minute flight bookings tend to spike skywards 7 days before the flight date, so try to avoid booking then.
January seems to be the cheapest month to book short haul flights, so try to save some money over from your Christmas fund for a continental trip later in the year.
If you’re looking to book an exotic trip and a long haul flight, book your flight in September to get the best prices on average.
Opodo’s research looked at return flights departing from the UK to all destinations between November 2016 and October 2017, so it’s based on some really strong statistical analysis about flight prices.
Opodo have also launched a really fantastic online tool that you can use to compare flight prices, I would really recommend checking it out before your next holiday booking.
Personally I have found a variety of tips, tricks and factors to help me get good prices on the many flights I have to book over a year. I like avoid Sundays and I tend to book on a Tuesday.
Interestingly enough Opodo’s research seems to support my booking patterns.
Opodo says that Tuesday is best for booking long haul, Sunday is best for domestic flights, and Wednesday should be your choice for booking short haul.
One thing you may have heard before but should always make sure you do is to clear your cache to avoid the booking website giving you a larger price on your subsequent visits.
They can track when you’re coming back to look at flights again and will raise the price on you, so it’s best to use Incognito mode on Google Chrome to browse undetected.
I would also say be flexible with which airport you want to fly into to visit a city. Check out alternative airports and be willing to get a bus into town from the airport to save money on your flight price, it can often be highly worth it.
Another tip that all pro travellers worth their salt will tell you is to sign up to airline mailing lists to be alerted first about deals they are offering.
When you get alerted in your inbox about flash sale flight deals you can head straight to their website and snap up some amazing prices.
It will be so worth having a bit of extra traffic in your inbox when you’re relaxing on a beach holiday for a flight you booked at an incredible discounted price and spending your extra money on food and drink.
Also, you should avoid busy holiday periods such as Easter and Christmas to travel. You’re better off doing something domestic.
Why not go on a hiking trip in one of the UK national parks, and enjoy some of the natural beauty to be found at home.
Busy travel periods usually means incredibly high flight prices, so it’s best to avoid those times if at all possible.
So there you have it! Now you know my tricks of the trade for booking your next cheaper flights.
I hope you found all the above information useful. Feel free to share the great flights deals you’ve been able to book with all this useful information in the comments below. Happy travels!
I love travelling to the vibrant and cool German city that is Berlin. One of my favourite areas to base myself in is around Alexanderplatz.
Ever since German reunification, Alexanderplatz has undergone a gradual process of distinct change with many of the surrounding buildings being renovated.
Despite the reconstruction of the tram line crossing, it has retained its historical socialist character, and can be a very interesting place to go off on a wandering walk.
With great transport connections to other parts of Berlin, Alexanderplatz is a perfect location to situate yourself for a visit to Berlin.
Here are a few tips I’ve outlined to help you along on your next visit to Alexanderplatz, Berlin.
Transport options for Alexanderplatz and Berlin
Alexanderplatz has great transportation connections to explore the rest of Berlin, making it a great hub to locate yourself for your visit. If you happen to be flying into Berlin TXL airport, grab the TXL airport bus directly to Alexanderplatz. How awesome and easy is that!
My advice would be to get a seven day public transport ticket for one person: The ‘seven day ticket’ is valid for seven consecutive days from the day of its validation. The ticket costs 30 euros. Its validity ends on the seventh day at midnight and covers the TXL bus (Zone AB) and the most popular destinations across Berlin.
The S/U-Bahn trains, buses and trams are all covered after one stamp validation at the yellow machines you will see around, then you can keep it in your wallet and never have to line up for a ticket. You can purchase one from any ticket machine, even the one at the airport. You can grab the TXL bus to the city centre straight away.
Where to stay in Alexanderplatz: St Christopher’s Inn Berlin
St Christopher’s Inn Berlin is a great place to stay location-wise, with Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz (Berlin U-Bahn) metro station right by and a short 7 minute walk to Alexanderplatz S station.
There is a wonderful hostel party atmosphere at the main bar Belushi’s, with great deals and plenty of travellers to meet. I like to stay in the 12 bed pod dorms. You get your own private closed-off pod space with a locker.
Remember to book via the St Christophers Inn app to snap up the best price and free continental breakfast throughout your stay.
Go to the top of the TV Tower, Berliner Fernsehturm.
The Berliner Fernsehturm is the 2nd tallest structure in the EU, and is also known as the TV tower. It’s the main attraction of the Alexanderplatz skyline, and makes for a perfect picture when you get to the top.
Why not head up there and enjoy the stunning 360 panorama view of Berlin from the top of the tower. There are plenty of viewpoints inside the top of the tower for you to explore, and get to know the city of Berlin from a sky high view.
To save time and get my spot booked in advance I used Musement, who helps travellers get the best from destinations by providing a great choice of local tours and attractions. I could get an E-ticket to go to the top for an affordable price. I saved a lot of time in the queue and used it taking amazing pictures at the top of the tower instead.
People watch at Alexanderplatz Square.
The square is not only a landmark area and popular meeting spot for Alexanderplatz tourists, but also for Berliners as well. This central square in the heart of Berlin was brought to life in the early 19th century, and has been a popular meeting spot ever since.
Here you can enjoy views of the TV tower, make the most out of the popular shopping spots, grab a bite to eat or drink, take a ride on the tram and transportation network connections, and enjoy some of the popular monuments.
Take a visit to the Fountain of Friendship between Peoples (Brunnen der Völkerfreundschaft), or grab a picture next to the World Clock (Weltzeituhr) which was built in 1969 and shows the time for over 140 cities across the world.
This is also your perfect opportunity to check out some classic Berlin delicacies. Berliners love their currywurst and kebab shops, and no visit to Alexanderplatz would be complete without a visit to either one.
Go on a Graffiti walking tour around Alexanderplatz
Explore some local artists and street art pieces around the Alexanderplatz area by going on the Alternative Street Art tour.
Meet at the Alexanderplatz TV Tower next to entrance of Starbuck’s on Monday, Wednesday, Friday & Saturday at 12pm.
Meet a local artist who will show you around some of the most popular spots in the area and really show you what the lifeblood of the Berlin art scene looks like.
Grab a weekend Brunch at Sauers cafe.
Also located down Rosa Luxemburg close to St Christophers Inn you can find the Sauers cafe.
After enjoying the infamous Berlin party lifestyle, be sure to check out the weekend brunch menu with avocado on toast and weekend special pancakes that are definitely worth trying.
The weekend brunch menu has something for everyone in its cosy cafe setting, with great coffee to boot.
Grab a rental bike to explore Alexanderplatz
Berlin is fantastic to explore by bicycle, and especially so around Alexanderplatz. I like to use a Donkey Bike as you can use the handy app to locate one close by to your location for a reasonable day rate.
If you cycle out to where the Lidl is you can even find a section of the Berlin wall which still stands in Alexanderplatz.
Thank you for reading this blog post all about Alexanderplatz in Berlin. Wishing you an awesome future trip, happy travels!
There is something rather romantic and magical about going on a rail journey. The feeling of nostalgia you get when you take life in the slow lane for a change and the journey itself becomes a part of the adventure.
Rail travel is still not a thing of the past, it’s just moved away from what it once was and become more of a tool for commuters to get from A to B.
However, you can still find the old charm, glamour and luxury along the railways in the form of luxury rail holidays.
This is what took me to my next destination, India, to unearth the charm of luxury rail travel and travel across Rajasthan on the Palace on Wheels, one of the many luxury train journeys you can find across India.
This blog post is all about my trip on board the Palace on Wheels which is an 8-day luxury rail journey around the popular Golden Triangle of Northern India, starting in New Delhi and travelling across Rajasthan to end the journey in Agra at the Taj Mahal.
Palace on Wheels route
These are the Palace on Wheels route stops: – New Delhi – Jaipur – Ranthambore National Park – Chittorgarh – Udaipur – Jaisalmer – Jodhpur – Agra – New Delhi.
Let’s take a look around the Palace on Wheels
For the train enthusiasts and future travellers of the Palace on Wheels, this is an in-depth look around the train to show you what it looks like and a list of all the facilities and services you can find on board.
Palace on Wheels, interior
Let’s have a look around the Palace on Wheels, interior to give you an idea of what’s on offer inside the guest train carts.
(Always greeted by the friendly Palace on Wheels staff.)
(A warm welcome.)
(From the outside – now lets take a look at the inside.)
I spent my journey in a carriage that had two single beds and shared the space with another passenger. From the above picture you can get an idea of what this room type looked like. I was sharing with a friend and we shared the room space and bathroom throughout the whole journey.
Each sharing room has a desk and wardrobe. The desk was large enough to place a laptop on it, and it has a night lamp. You can use the space under your bed to store your luggage bag.
By the bed was another table that you can use with a chest of drawers for storage. Two plugs can be found in the room, one by your bed and the other by the desk.
The room also had a built in radio that could be played in the bathroom and guest room. You also had a call button by your bed if you needed some help from your porter.
Each room compartment has its own private western style bathroom. Fresh towels are given each day and a selection of toiletries are on offer to use as you wish. I had a shower every morning and the hot water was plenty and frequent.
Each cart has its own lounge seating area with daily newspaper and Wi-Fi access. The Wi-Fi was 4G but the connection was not great in some locations, especially whilst the train was moving. It’s okay for light internet use such as checking emails, but I wouldn’t trust heavily on the connection due to the locations you will be visiting on the trip.
You also have access to a gym room on board with two workout machines and you can book a massage session on request for additional cost.
The dining compartment also has a lounge area by the bar so you can enjoy a drink and a selection of bar snacks before your meal or after your meal. Or if you would prefer to sit somewhere other than your room, this area is free to use throughout your journey.
The dining area is where you will be having your breakfast each morning. You will also be having either lunch or dinner in the dining compartment depending on the program (varies each day).
A unique set menu is put together each day for lunch or dinner, which contains a western style menu and a local Indian food choice. Typically your meal each day starts with a soup followed by a salad leading to the main course and ending with a dessert. It’s a silver service style menu that’s served to you in this dining cart area prepared by the kitchen staff each day.
Start your morning with a wake up call and tea
One of the highlights for sure was being able to request a wake up call and tea service each morning from your personal porter. What a great way to wake up on time each morning for a busy day ahead. Was just fantastic and the tea and biscuit selection were fantastic. I don’t think you can have a bad cup of tea in India.
Palace on Wheels dining cart
Breakfast is served each morning in the dining cart. Time varies each day due to the program, but around 07:00-08:00am each morning on average.
A selection of juice, tea and coffee is served with a selection of toast, pastries, cereals, sausage, bacon, fresh fruit, eggs how you like them, cooked to order and served to your choice.
You can even opt for a local Indian breakfast which must be made on request the day before if you wish an alternative to start your day. The tasty samosa is worth a try for sure.
The Palace on Wheels service is world class
I have to give a mention at this point about the top Palace on Wheels service which you will receive throughout your whole journey. They truly make you feel right at home once you’re on board.
Every step of the way they will take extra great care and attention to ensure your time in India goes well. Any issues you have throughout the trip they will be happy to assist you and make sure that everything goes smoothly.
On a number of occasions I noticed how the staff went above and beyond to ensure that everyone’s time on board the Palace on Wheels went well. It truly was a world class service.
Palace on Wheels cost
Here I will outline the general costs of the Palace on Wheels for you to get a rough idea of the overall value and spending on the journey. These prices are for high season.
Prices for the Palace on Wheels start from $650 USD per person per night.
All food, excursions, entrance tickets, tour guides and transfers as well as bottled water, tea and coffee are included in the overall total cost.
Alcoholic drinks and soft drinks are not included in the total cost and you must pay for this as an extra addition. As an example, one bottle of beer will set you back around £5. Laundry service is also at an additional charge.
One last cost to take into consideration is gratuity. It’s recommended to tip each tour guide each day along with tipping your personal porter and kitchen staff at the end of the trip.
I hope all the above gives you a better idea and a picture of the overall costs that are expected for the Palace on Wheels.
Journey starts in New Delhi
Delhi Safdarjung is the departure station for the Palace of Wheels. This is where your adventure across India for the next 8 days will start before returning and ending back in Delhi once you’ve completed the Golden Triangle.
(Ready to start my adventure on the Palace on Wheels.)
First things first, sort out your check-in, get your train ticket and sort out all the formalities. Check in your bag and find the way to your room and meet your porters for the next week and then enjoy a local music welcome ceremony and a light bite to eat and drink before your train departs and your journey begins.
Now you’re on your way, you can enjoy your first evening dining experience, meet other fellow passengers on board and get ready for the next destination in the morning.
Next stop, Jaipur!
The pink city of Jaipur
Jaipur is often called the pink city of India as they paint the surrounding buildings pink frequently every few years to give the city a unique and vibrant colour.
(A friendly Jaipur morning welcome to start your day.)
Travel in style on the Palace on Wheels with a friendly and colourful welcome. Every stop you make, you will be greeted with music and dance to welcome you to each city along the train route. How’s that for a morning welcome?
(A new guide waiting for you at each stop.)
At every stop on the Palace on Wheels you will be introduced to a local tour guide who will share his knowledge with you to ensure you learn as much as you want to discover about each stop along your route.
At our first stop in Jaipur we walked around the Albert Hall Museum. It is one of the oldest museums in the state. Here you can discover many rich pieces of art amongst its walls as well as appreciate the architecture of the building.
Don’t forget to pick up some local tea from a vendor if you see a brew being made. Super refreshing in the India weather and a nice way to take a break too.
Head to the top of Amer Fort with a Jeep and follow the cobbled streets to the entrance point. Here you can get a great overview of Jaipur and the surrounding area from up above.
Be sure to walk around and explore the foreground of this magnificent complex.
Spend some time walking around and exploring the City Palace with its rich colours and surrounding history on display amongst its walls. A great way to end your time in Jaipur as the sun starts to set.
Ranthambore National Park for tiger safari spotting
For a chance to enjoy local wildlife and a rare chance to spot a tiger in the wild, be sure to stop off at the Ranthambore National Park.
Be ready for an early 04:30am start as breakfast will be ready for you on your return. This is to make the most out of the best time of the day for spotting some wild animals waking up for breakfast in the national park at sunrise.
You will be loaded up with your tour guide onto an open top safari truck with blankets to survive the cold morning temperatures.
Spotting a tiger in the wild has to be the highlight of the trip for sure. We were lucky to spot one waking up for a morning sunrise just at the perfect time.
Extremely lucky indeed as spottings can be rare and happy we managed to make it happen on our trip.
Chittorgarh is a city in Rajasthan and is known for the honey-coloured 7th-century Chittorgarh Fort, a vast hilltop complex with the remains of many temples and monuments.
Vijay Stambh, also known as the Tower of Victory, is built from red sandstone and white marble. Here you can find many hungry monkeys waiting for snacks to be handed to them. The tower offers city views from the top, and it is lit up to make it a magical spot at night time.
Udaipur was one of my favourite stops on the Palace on Wheels tour as the city is full of areas to discover by taking a boat tour or even a tuk tuk ride.
Udaipur is set around a series of artificial lakes and reminds me a lot of European settings such as Lake Geneva.
Udaipur is also known for its lavish royal residences which you can walk around today.
City Palace, overlooking Lake Pichola, is a monumental complex of 11 palaces, courtyards, and gardens. City Palace is known for its intricate peacock mosaics.
Jaisalmer is one of the only living fortresses to be found in India. You can walk around the fortress and see as life has taken over amongst the walls.
Here you can find tucked away coffee shops and tea rooms as well as local vendors selling arts and crafts for haggling visitors.
You could easily get lost around the fortress for hours so be sure to set some time aside to wander around the area.
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