At a distance of 4 km from Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, Batasia Loop is a railway loop in Darjeeling of West Bengal. Situated below the Ghoom station, it is one of the mesmerizing places to visit in Darjeeling.
Batasia Loop was built in 1919 as an engineering requirement to lower the gradient of ascent of the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway. At this point, the track spirals around over itself through a tunnel and over a hilltop. After Ghoom (the highest railway station), there is a sharp fall as the toy train moves towards Darjeeling. There was no way a narrow gauge toy train could navigate the drastic fall of about 100 feet to the gradient of the slope. So, a large circular area was built for the loop to make the slope gentle.
Batasia means airy space. The Loop serves a vital purpose for the toy train but is also an attraction in itself. The loop goes around a garden. The mountain garden is beautified with fresh green grass, seasonal and perennial flowers and shrubs. There are seating areas where one can view the train chugging down the slope. There is a War Memorial at the center of the Batasia Loop. This memorial was constructed in 1995 by the District Sainik Board, Darjeeling in commemoration of the brave Gorkha Soldiers, who sacrificed their life to protect the sovereignty of the Nation. There is a Cenotaph and a statue of a soldier paying homage at an elevated platform.
Also, Batasia Loop attracts people for spectacular view of Mt. Kanchenjunga & other snowcapped Himalayan Peaks. The view of the train tearing past the white clouds and deeper into the green beauty of the terrain is a refreshing and enchanting expedition which should not be missed.
Timings: 5 AM to 8 PM
Entry Fee: Rs. 10 per person