Indian Railways is one of the world’s largest rail networks which connects people from across the country. It is also one of the best and relatively inexpensive ways to experience some fascinating views and adventurous routes in the country. Here are some rail journeys you might not want to miss out on.
1. Darjeeling Himalayan Railway (New Jalpaiguri-Darjeeling) –
People come from different parts of the world to visit Darjeeling just for a joyride on this narrow gauge railway track, which is listed in the UNESCO World Heritage Sites list. The toy train chugs its way across beautiful mountains and offers jaw-dropping views of Mt Kanchenjunga.
2. Konkan Railway (Mumbai-Goa) –
The Konkan Railway route offers amazing natural beauty throughout the journey, which includes the majestic and magnificent Sahyadri mountain ranges, a number of stunning curves, river bridges, lakes and waterfalls.
3. Kangra Valley Railway (Pathankot-Jogindernagar) –
Tipped for UNESCO World Heritage status, the Kangra Valley Railway might be one of India’s best-kept secrets. For breathtaking views of the Dhauladhar mountain range, you should travel this route at least once. It’s probably the most scenic train route in India.
4. Desert Queen (Jaisalmer-Jodhpur) –
The Desert Queen rail route offers the beauty of barren desert land, sand dunes, desert wildlife and tribes. This train route passes through the dry forest and waste land of the Thar Desert of Rajasthan.
5. Himalayan Queen (Kalka-Shimla) –
This incredible journey lasts for around five hours, and is definitely the most scenic trip that is passing through 20 railway stations, 800 bridges, 103 tunnels, and 900 curves before reaching Shimla.
6. Matheran Hill Railway (Matheran-Neral) –
Matheran is a place where all vehicles, including bicycles, are banned; so you get to enjoy a pollution free journey on board. The zigzag route of this train makes it slow-moving, giving you ample amount of time to enjoy fresh air and train journey.
7. Nilgiri Mountain Railway (Mettupalayam-Ooty) –
Officially opened for business in 1885, it was later declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2005. It is definitely one of the major attractions in Ooty.
8. Island Express (Kanyakumari-Trivandrum) –
A short train journey, but one packed with delicious sensory ticklers, this journey takes you through coconut trees, and gliding past typical Tamil and Keralite architecture.
9. Kashmir Valley Railway (Jammu-Baramulla) –
Not only picturesque and enthralling, but Kashmir Railway is one of the most challenging railway projects of the Indian rail system. It crosses the major earthquake zones, high altitude mountain passes and terrain, in extreme cold.
10. Adventures Araku Valley (Visakhapatnam-Araku Valley) –
The adventures train journey to Araku Valley is through the majestic Eastern Ghats, coffee plantations via the highest Broad gauge railway station of Shimiliguda.