August 22, 2017

My TripAdvisor Review No.228: Kalka Shimla Railway, Himachal.

“Heritage Toy Train - An Amazing Experience.”
Reviewed yesterday
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This narrow gauge train connects the hill town of Shimla, capital of the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh, to Kalka in the plains in the state of Haryana. The line was built by the British in the year 1898 and it acquired UNESCO World Heritage status in the year 2008, among the Mountain Railways of India. There are 103 tunnels and 864 bridges along the 95 km route. It takes between 4.5 to 5.5 hours for the small diesel locomotive to haul the 4 or 5 carriages up the Himalayan foothills, hugging the forested slopes.

We were staying at Kandaghat during our Himachal holiday. Though we did not actually travel in the train we decided to receive the train at Kandaghat station, and take some snaps, as it rolled into the platform. We could hear the train approaching from a distance along the curved railway line. Kids, waiting for the train on the platform for the train, started getting excited and jumping for joy as the train entered the platform. We took our snaps as the loco thundered into the station. The snack vendors and railway staff sprang to life as some passengers alighted to refresh themselves. One can travel on this train from the mid-way stations to other stations on the line by buying a ticket for Rs.20. The luxury trains, like Himalayan Queen, Shivalik Queen and Rail Motor from Kalka to Shimla, and vice-versa, can be reserved in advance.

The train left for Shimla after a 10 minute halt at Kandaghat. We stayed on the platform observing the activities as some passengers alighted and some others boarded the train. Most of them enjoyed a snack or a cup of hot tea and clambered back into their seats.

The Toy Train ride is an amazing experience as it climbs from the plains to the snow-capped peaks, through tunnels and pine forests, and over and under waterfalls. We decided to do the trip in the train on our next visit to Himachal Pradesh.
Visited June 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC