The 4TH largest railway network in the world has a number of interesting facts that many of us do not know. Around 161 years old, if the tracks of the train routes of India would be laid, they would encircle the earth around 1.5 times. Indian train journey is a memorable experience. As the train gulps on its track, its rhythmic vibration takes the travelers to another world. Some of the train routes of the country are identified for offering some spectacular views, ensuring a memorable experience. This post enlists 15 Best Scenic Rail Routes in India.
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1. Kalka to Shimla Rail Route
The Kalka–Shimla railway crosses a mostly-mountainous route from Kalka to Shimla. It is known for dramatic visions of the hills and surrounding villages. The railway was constructed under the direction of Herbert Septimus Harington between 1898 and 1903 to connect Shimla, the summer capital of India during British Raj, with the rest of the Indian rail system.
2. Matheran Hill Railway
The Matheran Hill Railway (MHR) covers a distance of 21 km, cutting a strip through forest and connecting Neral to Matheran in the Western Ghats. The MHR is on the tentative list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The 2 ft narrow-gauge line runs parallel to the broad-gauge line west of Hardal Hill before turning east to climb towards Matheran. The rail and road meet near Jummapatti, and meet again after a quick separation at Bhekra Khud. It takes about two hours and 20 minutes to finish the 21-kilometre journey.
3.Mandapam – Pamban – Rameswaram Route
Pamban Bridge is a railway bridge which joints the town of Mandapam in mainland India with Pamban Island, and Rameswaram. It was India’s first sea bridge and longest sea bridge in India till the opening of the Bandra-Worli Sea Link in 2010. The rail bridge is, for the foremost part, a standard bridge resting on concrete piers. In 1988, a road bridge was also constructed parallel to the rail bridge. The railway bridge carried metre gauge trains connecting Mandapam on mainland India to Pamban. Indian Railways advanced the bridge to carry broad gauge trains.
4. Jaisalmer – Jodhpur Route
The Rajasthan tour which is otherwise full of colours, can have an extra delight if you travel to Jaisalmer from Jodhpur in Delhi Jaisalmer Express. The travel time in the train takes close to 6 hours to reach the destination. The journey is not at all monotonous. In fact you perceive diverse landscape like typical desert landscape with xerophytic vegetation, yellow soil, dunes, grazing camels and scattered settlements of the desert inhabitants. The passengers will surely get a feel of the of the Golden Fort.
5. Darjeeling Himalayan Railway
The Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, is a 2 ft gauge railway that runs between New Jalpaiguri and Darjeeling in the Indian state of West Bengal . Built between 1879 and 1881, it’s about 88 km long. It climbs from about 100 m above water level at New Jalpaiguri to about 2,200 m at Darjeeling. UNESCO declared the DHR a World Heritage Site. A major difficulty faced by the DHR was the steepness of the terrain. Loops and zig-zags were incorporated along the route to realize a snug gradient. When the train moves forward, reverses and then moves forward again (climbing a slope while doing so), it gains altitude along the side of the hill.
6. New Jalpaiguri- Hansimara Route
This NJP to New Alipurduar route is one of the enchanting train routes with a wide variety of Flora and Fauna. It’s a journey of about 4 hours where the train crosses the Mahananda Wildlife Sanctuary, Chapramari Forest and BUXA Tiger Reserve. A herd of Elephants, Deer, Monkeys, a vivid variety of birds and butterflies can be seen easily from the window as you have a sip of the special Lemon Tea. If you are too lucky you may encounter a leopard or tiger too. The occasional train speeds up and then screams to a halt with a lazy hiss into the beautiful jungle. You might not want to blink or cut your camera while you’re on this journey.
7. Jammu–Baramulla Route
The Jammu–Baramulla Route is a railway track being laid to attach the Kashmir Valley in the Indian union territory of Jammu and Kashmir with Jammu train station and thence to the rest of the country. The 356 km railway track will start from Jammu and ends at Baramulla. Construction of the route faced natural challenges including major earthquake zones, extreme temperatures and inhospitable terrain. All portions of the track are ready apart from the link between Katra and Banihal. There are 27 major bridges and 10 minor bridges. Among these bridges are going to be one built across the deep gorge of the Chenab river near the Salal hydro-electric dam. This bridge of steel arches, 1315 meters long, will stand at a height of 359 meters from the bottom , which is 35 meters more than the peak of the Eiffel Tower . The project, which also encompasses 203 km of access roads, is expected to be ready by 2021.
8. Kangra Valley Railway
The Kangra Valley Railway is a railway that runs from Pathankot, Punjab to Jogindernagar in Himachal Pradesh. It runs through the sub-Himalayan region of Kangra Valley and is164 km long. The highest point on this line is Ahju station at an elevation of 1,290 meters. Trains on this railroad track line are pulled by small and fewer powerful engines than on a railroad track route, therefore steep ascents had to be avoided.
9. Mumbai – Goa Route
The journey from Mumbai to Goa crossing through the gorges of Sahyadari and borders of Arabian Sea is equally or perhaps the most scenic train rides in India. Mandovi Express, as a neighborhood of the Konkan Railway network, travels between Mumbai and Goa. The route is filled with scenic landscapes, starting from tunnels, bridges, coastal peripheries, and steps of Western Ghats, innumerable small rivers, seasonal streams and plush green meadows. Do not forget to require out your handicam or camera and capture the highlights of 1 of the stunning and delightful train journeys in India.
10. Mettupalayam – Ooty Route
Running since 1908, ‘Nilgiri Passenger’ still runs on external-combustion engine , going from Mettupalayam to Ooty. As the train ascends the Nilgiri Mountain, thick pine, oak and eucalyptus forests, bends, curves and tunnels. Nilgiri Passenger travels 26 km up the slope in almost 5 hours via stations like Kallar, Adderly, Hillgrove, Kateri, Runneymede, Kateri, Coonoor and Lovedale.
11. Vishakhapatnam – Araku Valley Route
The journey from Vishakhapatnam to Araku Valley through innumerable tunnels and sharp loops is sort of a stimulating one. Started as a mode to move ore and other minerals to Vishakhpatnam from Chhattisgarh, this railway route in India may be a treat for the eyes also as the soul.
12. Hassan – Mangalore Route
Witness a pleasing train journey through scenic waterfalls, lofty mountains, palm plantations and rice meadows from Hassan to Mangalore. Railway voyage along this stretch of the Malnad region is actually refreshing and excellent delight for travelers.
13. Guwahati – Silchar Route
This journey meanders through river Jatinga, lush green Assam Valley, tea plantations and swelling Haflong valley. The route from Guwahati to Silchar via Lumding and Barak Valley makes it one among the foremost beautiful train journeys in India.
14.Ratnagiri to Mangalore Route
Matsyagandha Express may be a excellent medium for traveling between Ratnagiri to Mangalore. It covers the 765-kilometer distance in 17 hours. The train starts from Mumbai and on the way meets Ratnagiri and therefore the destination is Mangalore.
15. Karjat to Lonavala route
The journey from Karjat to Lonavala through Thakurwadi, Monkey Hills and Khandala is mystic and witnesses wide selection of biodiversity on all sides of the Western Ghats. Monsoon season is suggested due to the luxurious green views and delightful rain scenery that it offers.
These unbelievable train journeys in the ever so incredible India are the lifeline of tourism. A traveller would be full of admirations once he experiences one of these delightful voyages in the country. If you are someone who is in continues search of exploring something new in India, then these journeys are definitely meant for you. Though if you are still wondering how to plan a perfect train journey in India then let www.tintinbox.com help you through it. Just let us know your opinion in the comment section below.