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Train-cation: Travel by Toy Trains in India

I was reading about how to reduce my carbon footprint. I jumped with joy when I saw train travel was one of them. So it is time to romance with the railways! It is time to have a train-cation in India! And if it is travel by toy trains, then even better!

There was a time when words like train-cation, bro-cation, staycation were never a part of dictionary. Now they are all being used and implemented by travel freaks around the world. Train-cation as the name suggests is travel by train! So we embark upon our journey to research interesting train travels in India!

You can read about luxury train travels in India in this blog!

Train journeys are fun! You meet strangers on a train journey and have ample time to chat with them. The romantic sees this as a chance for some cute budding love stories too. I love travelling by trains, meeting different people and listening to their stories.

In our quest to visit the toy trains in India, we decided to take up toy train journeys as much as possible. We boarded the Kalka-Shimla train during our visit to Shimla. And visited the highest station in India the Ghoom station. We also had a toy train ride at our very own Matheran!

I will talk about our train-cations in today’s blog:

Travel by Toy trains in India

Kalka-Shimla Toy train:

Welcome to this railway route recognised with UNESCO World Heritage. Take a ride through the mountains, valleys, pine forests and the beautiful hamlets.

The train starts at Kalka for its 5 hour journey. Its speed slows down as at around 600+ metres the train starts climbing uphill. In its journey it crosses 18 stations to reach Shimla.  Out of the total 4 trains going from Kalka to Shimla, we had boarded the Shivalik Express. It starts at 5.20 a.m from Kalka and reaches Shimla at 10.00 a.m. It has nice cushioned seats and serves tea and breakfast. Watching the mountains and the sunrise from the train is a lovely experience! Look at the photo above and see how the bridges are built. Isn’t it a engineering marvel! There are 102 tunnels along the way, the longest being the Barog tunnel.

All in all its a fun journey with exemplary views and you must do it at least once!

You can book the tickets on!

Darjeeling Himalayan train:

Riding the  Darjeeling Himalayan Toy train is in the bucketlist of many travelers.  This train has again been accorded the UNESCO World Heritage status. The train was built in 1880s. The train traverses through steep curves and mountains. The Engineer in me was amazed by this little marvel!

The beauty of the train lies in its steam engine. Many people work hard to make this steam engine work. There is also an attendant standing in front of the engine to address issues if any. The steam blowing out the train gives the perfect sound entertaining the child in me!!

The speed of the train is very slow giving a chance to people to hop on and hop off the train. The train also stops frequently but I would suggest it for a short distance only for the fun of it!

Also visit to the Ghoom station the highest station in India is like cherry on the cake!

You can book the tickets on!

Matheran toy train:

The toy train which is close to our hearts is the Matheran toy train. It starts at Neral to take us to the clean hill station of Matheran. Matheran does not allow any vehicles, keeping it pollution free. The most preferred way to go to this clean hill station is to board a train from Pune or Mumbai and get down at Neral station. The 12 kms journey from Neral to Matheran can then be done in the toy train. The train climbs up the mountain and then slows down. You can have the snacks walas and chai walas just hop up and hop down the train!  The train passes through a small tunnel which is called “One kiss” tunnel. Funny isn’t it?

The views from the train are simply amazing. With the magnificent mountains and trees all around, this journey would surely refresh you! The train has really passed the test of time with it being closed intermittently a few years back to it being revived fully in Dec 2018. It must be the love of the people that must have kept the train going!

You can book the tickets on!

We are fighting against the issue of global warming and flight journey surely increases the carbon footprint. Hence it is advisable to travel by trains as much as possible and save the nature as well as save your money 🙂

Have you had any memorable train journeys? Do write to us about them!

You will also like: Offbeat vacation in Goa!

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