Think about train journey and the memories- of chitchatting with fellow travel companions over warm tea, peering outside the window lost in thoughts, seeing the changing landscape- will blow you away. Catch Mountain Railways of India to evoke such memories. The three most picturesque and impressive railway routes- Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, Nilgiri Mountain Railway and Shimla Kalka Railway, collectively known as The Mountain Railways Of India- offers riders an unmatched travel adventure in rugged mountainous terrain. These scenic Mountain Railways have been recognized as World Heritage Sites by UNESCO.
- Darjeeling Himalayan Railway
- Nilgiri Mountain Railway
- Shimla Kalka Railway
1. Darjeeling Himalayan Railway
Inaugurated in 1881, the ride of this toy train through the Eastern Himalayan Terrain starts from Siliguri and covers 88 km to Darjeeling. In 1999, the UNESCO recognized this Mountain Railway as a World Heritage Site. The journey of this delightful little train in the lap of fascinating Eastern Himalayas is an experience to treasure. The range of the level of elevation of this line is massive, with Siliguri at about 100m, Darjeeling at about 2200m and Ghoom at about 2300m. The way filled with four loops, four steep zigzags reverses, tunnels and bridges creates excitement among the passengers by offering stunning views of the valley and mountains. The popular tourist hotspots to be visited along this World Heritage Site are Darjeeling, Siliguri, Mahanadi Wildlife Sanctuary, Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological Park, Tiger Hill, Chilapata Forest and Jaldapara Wildlife Sanctuary. Hotels in Darjeeling and Siliguri ranging from 5 stars to Budget category can be picked up to explore these popular tourist hotspots.
2. Nilgiri Mountain Railway
Built in 1908, the Nilgiri toy train runs for a distance of 46 kilometers in the Nilgiri Hills, popularly known as Blue Mountains of India, between Ootacamund (Ooty) and Mettupalayam. The Nilgiri Mountain Railway was recognized as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2005. It passes through 208 curves, 16 tunnels and 250 bridges offering splendid views of the Valley of “Blue Mountain” below down. The twisting ride of this toy train offers the dewy freshness of nature with enchanting views of waterfalls and scenic patches of forests. Spectacular sights along this track to be visited are Coonoor, Ooty, Nilgiri Biosphere Nature Park, Pykara Lake and Waterfalls, Mudumalai Wildlife Sanctuary, Doddabetta Peak, and Catherine Waterfalls. A wide range of Hotels and Resorts in Ooty and Coonoor are available to spend your leisure time in between these spectacular sights.
3. Shimla Kalka Railway
Built in 1903, this toy train connects Shimla with Kalka in the foothills of the Himalayas and travels a distance of 96 kilometers. In 2008, the Shimla Kalka Railway joined the list of the UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites. The track having 103 tunnels, 919 curves and 864 bridges amazed the passengers by offering scintillating views of snow-capped mountains and lush green valley embellished with pine and oak trees. The train climbing up to an altitude of 1420 meters in Siwalik hill ranges left travelers with a long lasting memory of rhapsody and triumph. The most visited tourist attractions along this track are Shimla, Dharampur, Solan, Kalka, Panchkula Kandaghat and Jhakoo Hill. The Resorts and Hotels in Shimla set inside hilly areas can be handpicked to hangout these tourists attractions. Experience a mesmerizing ride of these toy trains that will remain engraved in your memories forever.
Suggested Tour: 5 Nights 6 Days Shimla Manali Tour Package in North India