Well, toy train ride in Shimla is a one of its kind journey and a not to be missed if you are planning to travel to Shimla. Yes it is completely safe to take up this exciting and memorable voyage. The train line begins at 2100 feet at Kalka and traverse to 6811 feet at Shimla, passing through some delicious scenery.
There are around five trains that run between these two destinations and the fare starts from INR 235 for First class and INR 18 for ordinary class. There is a provision of booking tickets at Indian Railways Counter and also from the respective stations.
The Kalka-Shimla rail route that has already completed 100 years. It provides the charm of travel of old-world amidst lush green, lofty pines andmisty mountains. This is one of thenarrow gauge rail routes on terrain in India and other three are in Pathankot – JoginderNagar routes, Darjeeling, and Ooty.
Actually, the Darjeeling route was utilised as a role model for the Kalka-Shimla route that was proposed in 1891. It started at the time of Lord Curzon in November 1903. This rail route features in the Guinness Book of World Records for providing the steepest increase in the altitude in the space of 96 kms.
The two-thirds of the path is curved and angles are as sharp as 48 degrees. It is extended to a 96 km long narrow gauge track that passes through around 103 tunnels and more than 800 viaducts and bridges. It is one of the beautiful hill railways in the country and was considered as the “crown jewel” of the Indian Railways at the time of Britishers. Bordered by hills on both the sides, the rail line such as twin threads of silver, adheres to theventures boldly over bridges and steep cliffs built on tiny streams showing off their radiance in the sunlight. You will enjoy when cool breeze sweeps throughyour face as the train climbs on almost 4800 feet from Kalka to Shimla in a tine duration of five hours.
Route of famous toy train
The rail line starts its journey immediately afterleaving from the Kalka railway station. The toy train continues along the line, whistling throughpine, deodar, oak, ficus, and maple woods at a speed of around 22 km an hour. As the journey starts, one is taken with the alteration in vegetation. Also, the Gothic-style bridges and routeand the royal glory of the railway stations are fascinating to look on.
The most stimulating part of the journey is the experience of sitting on the window, breathing the cool breeze and enjoying the greenery, smell of fresh dew of the vegetation, the sight of cattle grazing, the chirping of birds especially if you are travelling in the early morning toy trains.
Added new luxury trains
Gone are the days of traveling in the shaky coaches with the wooden berths. In their place you can enjoy freshly painted coaches that provide the comfort of chair cars. Another coach by the name of Shivalik Queen offers privacy in the form of coupes. If you are looking for royal luxury, then the Railways offersShivalik Palace, that is a separate luxurious compartment having beautiful interiors, provision of sleeping and comfortable sofas for relaxing. It also has a beautiful kitchen with an attendant to serve foods and drinks with the attached bathroom. The tourists can also take the rail car that will take less time than the regular trains to reach Shimla.
Yes, it is quite safe to travel in toy train. Enjoy your journey from Kalka to Shimla.