Bangkok to Singapore by Train

Although it’s not exactly Bangkok to Singapore by train since I’m starting with the overnight Chiang Mai  to Bangkok sleeper.    I’m then spending 12 days travelling from Bangkok to Penang, Kuala Lumpur and Singapore by train.  A 2000 kilometre chance to find out how much I really like trains – and how much I like a quiet comfortable hotel bed too!

First up is the overnight sleeper to Bangkok which I’ve already written about here  I’ll be travelling in a second class carriage which has seats which turn into beds which I find very comfortable.   As always, I’ll be armed with extra layers of clothing to protect again the chilly air conditioning, and some sandwiches so I can completely avoid having to eat the terrible food on board.  I will be on my own as usual as Steve has had to go to Bangkok early to sort out an emergency passport.  His application for a new passport is languishing somewhere in Liverpool still ‘’being processed’’ after seven weeks.  He will be travelling on what the British embassy calls an ‘emergency travel document’ which means he has to apply for visas for Malaysia rather than getting a visa on arrival.  Extra money and extra hassle because of bureaucratic inefficiency back in the UK.

chiang mai railway station

Chiang Mai train station

I will spend one night in Bangkok (and will doubtless end up singing that song in my head again for days) at the amazing Sukhothai Hotel , can’t wait to check that out.  I’ll then take a nearly 24 hour journey from Bangkok to Butterworth in Malaysia.  The international express is operated by Malaysian railways so I’m hoping the food is better than on Thai Railways but fear the over enthusiastic use of air-con will have my raiding my backpack and seeing just how many clothes one person can wear.

From Butterworth we will take the ferry to Georgetown in Penang for two nights.  Not sure of our itinerary there and I don’t plan too much but certainly we’ll be exploring the colonial sights, the Georgetown street art and hopefully have time to hike up Penang Hill.

After two nights of sleeping in a bed it’s another overnight train to Kuala Lumpur with two nights there to explore one of my most-visited cities.  Then it’s the last leg of the trip on another overnight train to Singapore.

Singapore is one of my favourite cities in the world and I’m dearly looking forward to three days there.  Great Indian food and shopping for bangles in Little India are on my list of things to do.

My whole trip (including after Singapore when I go to Scotland, Dubai and Oman) has taken on a new dimension since I’ve landed a role writing for Luxury and Boutique hotels.  The nights we’re not sleeping on trains we’ll be staying in some fantastic hotels.

One month, six countries, it’s going to be a blast!

bangkok to chiang mai train

Sign on door of 1st class cabin on Bangkok to Chiang Mai train



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