All Aboard: From Nandi Hills to Toy Train Thrills – India's Scenic Rail Journeys

All Aboard: From Nandi Hills to Toy Train Thrills – India's Scenic Rail Journeys


Bengaluru recently celebrated a milestone as Southwestern Railways introduced its first electric train service connecting the bustling city to the picturesque Nandi Hills. The extension of the Mainline Electric Multiple Unit (MEMU) train services between Chikkaballapur and Devanahalli has opened up a new and eco-friendly way for locals and tourists to reach this popular weekend getaway. As the train halts at Nandi station, just two kilometres from the base of Nandi Hills, it promises to be a game-changer for those seeking a serene escape from the city.


Bengaluru's Electric Connection to Nandi Hills

The new electric train service, operational on the Yeswantpur-Chikkaballapur-Yeshwantpur, Bengaluru Cantonment-Chikkaballapur-Cantonment, and Chikkaballapur-Bengaluru Cantonment-Chikkaballapur routes, is a welcome addition for weekend travellers. Nandi Hills, situated 60 kilometres away from Bengaluru, has long been a favoured destination, especially during weekends and extended breaks. The train service aims to alleviate the traffic congestion and long wait times experienced by both bikers and car drivers attempting to reach the hilltop.


Exploring Beyond Nandi Hills: India's Toy Trains

While Nandi Hills introduces a modern travel experience, India boasts several enchanting toy train journeys that offer a nostalgic and scenic way to explore the country's diverse landscapes. Here are five must-visit toy train experiences:


Kalka Shimla Toy Trains: A UNESCO World Heritage Adventure

The Kalka-Shimla toy train, recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a narrow-gauge railway winding through the Himalayan Shivalik Hills. The journey from Kalka to Shimla covers approximately 107 tunnels and 864 bridges, providing breathtaking views of hills and villages. Travellers can choose from various trains, each offering a unique experience.


Darjeeling Himalayan Toy Trains: A Journey to the Queen of Hills

Running between New Jalpaiguri and Darjeeling in West Bengal, the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway is another UNESCO World Heritage Site. Known for its zigzag and loop-line technology, this toy train offers mesmerising views of the mountains and gardens. Featured in popular Hindi films, it's a nostalgic ride into the heart of Darjeeling.


The Kangra Valley Toy Trains: Sub-Himalayan Delight

Exploring the Sub-Himalayan region of the Kangra Valley, this toy train covers 164 kilometres from Pathankot, Punjab, to Joginder Nagar in Himachal Pradesh. Passing through picturesque stations like Palampur and Baijnath, it's a delightful journey providing a glimpse of the Himalayan landscape.


Nilgiri Mountain Toy Trains: Scaling Heights in Tamil Nadu

The Nilgiri Mountain Railway, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is renowned for its steep track and unique rack railway system. Connecting Mettupalayam to Udhagamandalam (Ooty) in Tamil Nadu, this toy train journey offers panoramic views of the Nilgiri Mountains, featured prominently in the Bollywood song "Chaiyya Chaiyya."


Matheran Hill Toy Trains: Maharashtra's Heritage Rail Experience

Regulated by the Central Railway, the Matheran Hill Railway in Maharashtra traverses through forests and connects Neral to Matheran. As a 2 feet narrow-gauge heritage railway, it covers a distance of 21 kilometres, providing a charming journey through the Western Ghats.


Plan Your Scenic Rail Getaway

Embarking on a journey aboard these toy trains offers not only a mode of transportation but also an immersive experience into India's diverse landscapes and cultures. Whether you're scaling the heights of Shimla, exploring the tea gardens of Darjeeling, or enjoying the serene beauty of Nandi Hills, each train ride promises memories that last a lifetime.


For those seeking the thrill of new electric train experiences and the timeless charm of toy trains, India's railways offer a diverse tapestry of adventures. So, plan your rail getaway, relish the scenic beauty, and make memories that echo the rhythmic chug of the train wheels against the tracks. All aboard for a journey into India's picturesque landscapes!