With a total route length of 67,956 km, India has the fourth-largest rail network in the world that carry around 30 million people from across the country. The train journey is one of the most relaxing and relatively inexpensive ways to experience some picturesque views and adventurous routes in the country which gives you a lifetime of memories. As the train chugs on its track, its rhythmic vibration takes the travelers to another world and passes through gushing waterfalls, steep mountain slopes, narrow valleys, wide seas, lush tea plantations, and snow-capped mountains. If you’re planning a rail journey soon, just go through our list of the 12 most scenic train journeys to embark on at least once as part of India Tour Packages.
New Jalpaiguri to Darjeeling / Darjeeling Toy Train
A UNESCO World Heritage, the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, is a 2 feet narrow-gauge railway based on zig zag and loop line technology that runs from New Jalpaiguri to Darjeeling in the Indian state of West Bengal. Established in the late 19th century, the Darjeeling Toy Train is the oldest mountain railway in India and among the top places to visit in Darjeeling. It was originally used to transport tea and rice down to the plains. Today, this 78 km long train route takes you through some of the most beautiful tea gardens in India, forested hills, and valleys. Running up to a height of over 7,000 feet, the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway is one of the oldest and highest railway lines in the world. A particularly thrilling section of the track, the Batasia Loop, is an engineering marvel worth witnessing. Still operating with the original steam engine, the toy train journey is an experience that shouldn’t be missed as the entire circuit is filled with scenic views and loops where the train turns around 360°, offering a panoramic view of the snow-clad Himalayas.
Book Here : Darjeeling Tour Packages
Vasco da Gama to Londa
Fondly called the beach capital of India, Goa is world-renowned for its lovely beaches and party atmosphere. Besides, this tiny state also has another attraction i.e., the scenic train journey from Vasco Da Gama to Londa that you surely cannot miss out on as this stretch of train takes you through the verdant villages, mysterious tunnels, and rugged paths of the Western Ghats. The main attraction of this journey is the wonderful sight of the Dudhsagar Waterfalls, one of the top places to visit in Goa, and among the tallest waterfalls in India. Once the train reaches the waterfall, you will be amazed at the cascading beauty, and the force of the gigantic waterfall. If you decide to enjoy it closely, quickly get down at Londa junction, which is the nearest station to Dudhsagar Falls.
Book Here : Goa Tour Packages
Kalka to Shimla
Popularly known as the Himalayan Queen, the train journey from Kalka to Shimla is the second one among the UNESCO World Heritage sites of the Indian Mountain Railways. Built by the British in 1903, this beautiful train journey which starts from Kalka in Haryana covers a distance of 96 km and passes through 20 stations, 102 tunnels, 864 bridges, and an incredible 900 curves. The meter-gauge train finally pulls into the station at Shimla, among the top hill stations in Himachal Pradesh. This five-hour journey is one of the most scenic train journeys in India, and among the must-experience things to do in Shimla as it treats passengers with breathtaking views of rugged mountains, lush pine forests, waterfalls, valleys, and picture-perfect hill stations along the way.
Book Here : Shimla Tour Packages
Chennai to Rameswaram
The Chennai-Rameshwaram train connection, also known as Sethu Express, is another memorable train journey you can have in India. This route is quite dangerous as the train passes through the Pamban bridge, a narrow train bridge built over the Palk Strait, which is the only route that connects mainland India to Pamban Island, among the top places to visit in Rameswaram. The sea bridge connecting Tamil Nadu’s Mandapam to Pamban Island is the country’s second-longest sea bridge. Besides, Rameshwaram is regarded as one of the top places of pilgrimage in India. According to mythology, Lord Rama stayed here and built this bridge to rescue Sita from Lanka. The view from above, while the train is crossing the Gulf of Mannar, is going to leave you spellbound.
Book Here : Rameshwaram Tour Packages
Nilgiri Mountain Railway (Mettupalayam – Ooty)
Nilgiri Mountain Railway that runs from Mettupalayam to Ooty, is one of the popular train journeys in India. Fondly called as Toy Train, it is third one among the UNESCO World Heritage sites of the Indian Mountain Railways, and one of the top Ooty tourist places. Developed by British engineers in 1908, the sound of the steam engine spells an old-world charm on the travelers and gives the feel of the time of the British rule. Covering 42 km in length, the train route winds its way through 108 hair-raising curves, 16 fearful tunnels, 250 bridges and deep ravines full of verdant vegetation, gurgling streams, and tea gardens. Just keep your camera handy to capture some amazing views while embark on your journey to one of the most popular hill stations in India, Shimla.
Book Here : Ooty Tour Packages
Jammu to Udhampur
Jammu to Udhampur is the most special train journey that one must experience at least once while in India. Starting from the picturesque Jammu Valley and ending at Udhampur, this Kashmir Valley train route covers a distance of around 53 km that takes its passengers to more than 20 beguiling tunnels, and 158 bridges giving passengers breathtaking views of rivers, valleys, mountains, and forests. The main highlight of this journey is passing through the tallest railway bridge in India. Don’t miss this exciting experience as part of Jammu & Kashmir Tour Packages.
Guwahati to Silchar is one of the most picturesque train journeys in India. The route from Guwahati to Silchar via Lumding and Barak Valley meanders through river Jatinga, lush green Assam Valley, tea plantations, and undulating Haflong valley. If you happen to take this train journey during the monsoon, you will get to see the carpet of green that spreads for miles around making for a beautiful view. Besides, this train journey takes you to witness the beauty of hill stations in Assam.
Matheran Hill Railway (Matheran – Neral)
Lying amidst the Western Ghats, Matheran is an eco-friendly hill station in Maharashtra where all vehicles are banned; so the only way to reach this quaint hill station is to opt for a pony ride or hope on the Toy Train from Neral. This narrow-gauge railway line was built by Akbar Peerbhoy way back between 1901 to 1907. This is the only heritage railway in Maharashtra, and among the must-experience things to do in Matheran. This 20 km narrow gauge railway running between Matheran and Neral passes through the rugged terrains of the Western Ghats and provides travellers with a view so scenic, that it is hard to take your eyes off it.
Book Here : Matheran Tour Packages
Jaisalmer – Jodhpur
Popularly called the ‘Golden City’, Jaisalmer in Rajasthan is known to be the hub of camel safaris in the expansive Thar Desert. If you are in short of time and want to enjoy a desert safari, then hope on to a train called the Desert Queen which runs between Jaisalmer and the blue city of Jodhpur. This train route takes you through the sterile expanses of the Thar with views of grazing camels, settlements of desert inhabitants, and the sands that are spread beyond your vision. The passengers will surely get a feel of the desert safari before reaching the Jaisalmer / Jodhpur, among the must-include places in Rajasthan tour packages.
Book Here : Jaisalmer Tour Packages
Bhubaneshwar to Brahmapur
Another most memorable & serene train journey in India is between Bhubaneshwar and Brahmapur. Flanked by the Eastern Ghats on one side and serene Chilika Lake on the other side, a morning train ride from this route is more than sufficient for Orissa to prove its grandeur. While traveling through this route, you can capture a glimpse of Chilika Lake, one of the top places to visit in Puri, and among the best lakes in Orissa. The Chilika lagoon is also a bird watcher’s delight as it is home to lots of migratory birds as well as resident birds.
Book Here : Orissa Tour Packages
Konkan Railway (Mumbai – Goa)
With the amazing Sahyadri hills on one side and the Arabian Sea on the other, the train route from Mumbai to Goa is perhaps the most scenic train ride in India. The route traverses through 92 tunnels and 2,000 bridges, sleepy villages, and lush green landscapes filled with innumerable small rivers and verdant meadows. This entire ride is about 580 km that takes around 12 hours to complete. To enjoy the tranquil moments in the lap of nature during the train journey, hope on to Mandovi Express and travel to Goa, among the top places to visit in India.
Book Here : Goa Tour Packages
Kanyakumari to Trivandrum is another scenic journey through the typical landscape of South India that includes picturesque villages, plantations, meadows, and water bodies. This 2-hour short train journey is all about the charming beauty around, the freshness of the natural beauty, and the most rustic feel of local life. One can spot the typical Tamil and Keralite architecture, beautiful Keralite churches, and ornately decorated temples on this journey as part of Trivandrum Tour Packages.
Book Here : Kanyakumari Tour Packages
Visakhapatnam to Araku Valley is yet another interesting train journeys in India and among the must experince things to do as part of Andhra tour packages. The route passes through the majestic Eastern Ghats, lush coffee plantations via the highest Broad gauge railway station of Shimiliguda and reach Araku Valley which is known for its scenic beauty and inhabited tribes. Covering a distance of 116 km, the train departs from Vishakhapatnam which takes around 4 hours to reach Araku Valley via Borra caves, among the top places to visit in Araku. The route also offer several bridges and tunnels to keep you excited through the way. The Government has introduced the glass train so that the tourists can immerse in the scenic beauty of this region to get a lifetime experience.
Book Here : Araku Tour Packages
Santhi is an avid traveler and primary contributor to the blogs at Trawell.in. She has explored most of the states in India and gained vast knowledge on tourist destinations in India and abroad. She also contributes content to other travel websites.