Guests chatting in the Eastern & Oriental Express
Guest drinking water on the Eastern & Oriental Express
Attendant pouring coffee on the Eastern & Oriental Express
Passing by a village on the Eastern & Oriental Express
Guests dressed up for a celebration on the Eastern & Oriental Express
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Eastern & Oriental Express

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Belmond acquired New Zealand’s famed Silver Star, brought it to Southeast Asia, and refurbished it in elegant style, then re-christened it the Eastern & Oriental Express (E&O). The train runs 1,262 miles between Singapore, Malaysia and Bangkok, Thailand*. The inaugural journey was September, 1993.

In our opinion, the Eastern & Oriental Express is one of the most beautiful trains in the world. It takes a maximum of 64 guests, making for a convivial yet intimate atmosphere. Dining is excellent, as is service. Other highlights include interesting off-train excursions and on-board entertainment. It is overall an exceptional experience

Read Angela Walker’s blog about her trip from Bangkok to Singapore aboard the Eastern & Oriental Express.

*Note the train is not currently running into Thailand.


Breakfast and afternoon tea are served in your cabin; lunch and dinner are taken in the dining cars, lavishly decorated with rosewood and elm paneling. House drinks are complimentary. Dining on board is a highlight: the food has received international accolades for the blending of Western and Eastern culinary styles.

Dining and service, in our opinion, match that of its famous European Venice Simplon-Orient-Express sister train, which is a feat. There are three dining cars — Adisorn, Rosaline, and Malaya — each seating about 28 guests. Each is decorated in floral motifs reflecting the culture of the region. The lighting, china, crystal, and flatware adds up to a gorgeous ambience — heightened by their signature pink lamps.

There is also a Saloon Car which has a small dining area for up to 16 guests. Most journeys will include the Saloon Car and one dining car, and there will be two seatings for both lunch and dinner.


The Observation Car is located at the end of the train—a favorite public space. The car includes a bar and lounge area with complimentary Wi-Fi. At the rear is an outdoor observation area decorated with teak wood. (Smoking is permitted in the outdoor area only.)

The Lounge Car is located toward the middle of the train, and also contains a bar and comfortable couches, chairs and tables. The Lounge Car comes alive in the evenings, first for pre-dinner cocktails, then after-dinner entertainment, with local entertainment and a resident pianist playing until the last person retires.

The Saloon Car includes a boutique and reading lounge with library, in addition to the dining area. Foot massages are bookable in the Saloon Car at a very reasonable price.

House wine, house spirits and local beer are included throughout your journey. Premium drinks are additional, including a fantastic list of specialty cocktails, such as “Mist on the Rice Paddies,” using the magical effects of dry ice.

IRT Insights

IRT highly recommends treating yourself to a 45-minute foot massage; it is extra special to enjoy this relaxing treatment while watching the beautiful Southeast Asian scenery pass by. Also in the Saloon Car, some departures feature a palm reader, while others a magician — all great fun. Evening entertainment in the Lounge Car usually includes local Thai and/or Malaysian dancers, not to be missed.

The train runs when the weather is best: from January to April and September to December.

Off-train excursion are included and offer a choice of a more relaxed or active option. See itineraries for more information.

Please note: The Eastern & Oriental Express travels over rough track in certain areas. If you have back issues or other health issues that would be exacerbated by rough track, you may be more comfortable on a different train. Call or e-mail us to discuss which journey is right for you.

Read Angela Walker’s blog about her trip from Bangkok to Singapore aboard the Eastern & Oriental Express.

Read owner Eleanor Hardy’s blog about the Epic Thailand journey aboard the Eastern & Oriental Express.

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