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The Toy Train

The Shivalik Express, affectionately referred to as the 'Toy Train' travels between the Indian town of Kalka and Shimla, capital city of the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh.

Toy Train

The Toy Train's ninety-six kilometre narrow-gauge track through the Shivalik foothills of the Himalayas is one of three Indian mountain railways which together constitute a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Built by British colonists, the Kalka-Shimla Railway is an extraordinary feat of railway engineering. The line negotiates 102 tunnels, more than 864 bridges and around 919 curves. Passengers have plenty of time in which to admire and marvel these features as well as the spectacular mountain panorama that line the route as the train makes its ascent to Shimla demands a leisurely pace.

We’ve found 5 tours for you matching: Toy Train

India's Golden Triangle

The kaleidoscopic sights of this colourful country take your breath away. Our Indian rail tour takes in the Red and Amber Forts, historic temples, beautiful palaces and ornate gardens, as we visit Delhi, the 'Pink City' of Jaipur and Agra with its white marble icon, the Taj Mahal.

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13 days from £2,145 pp

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Five-Star India’s Golden Triangle, Tigers & Shimla

Marvel at historic temples, spot an elusive tiger and visit beautiful palaces and gardens as we explore kaleidoscopic India, taking in the tranquillity of Shimla, enigmatic Delhi, the 'Pink City' of Jaipur and Agra with its resplendent marble icon, the Taj Mahal.

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14 days from £2,045 pp

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India's Palace on Wheels

Magnificent palaces and forts are waiting to be discovered on this Indian rail adventure aboard the Palace on Wheels train. Experience the lifestyle of the Maharajahs as we visit walled cities, marvel at the astonishing Taj Mahal and enjoy tiger spotting in Ranthambore National Park.

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15 days from £4,995 pp

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Spectacular Southern India

Discover the exotic majesty of India's southern regions on a tour which ventures into jungles and along coastlines, uncovering colours, tastes and sights from some of India's least explored destinations. This tour is operated by our sister company Rail Discoveries.

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Spirit of the Himalaya

Venture into the spectacular Himalayan Mountains on this tour which celebrates the best that this stunning mountain range, and the country of India have to offer. Discover ancient mountains, Tibetan mysticism and colourful cities.

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A unique railway experience

Still owned and run by the Indian Government, the Shivalik Express has been wonderfully preserved and maintained. Stepping aboard the Toy Train is akin to being transported back to India's British Colonial era. By their nature narrow-gauge trains are compact, but the Toy Train nevertheless offers Great Rail Journeys' customers a enthralling ride. The route itself is rarely less than spectacular. In the course of a journey lasting between five and six hours, our guests are treated to ever-changing vistas of sublime natural beauty, ranging from dense pine and acacia forests, mountain valleys and snow-capped peaks to terraced farmland and apple orchards.

These picture-postcard views are punctuated by the   Kalka-Shimla Railway's   many turns, switchbacks, bridges and tunnels. The longest tunnel, just before the railway station at the village of Barog, spans more than a kilometre and at the time of its completion in the late nineteenth century was the longest rail tunnel in the world. Most passengers agree that beyond Barog the route's scenery becomes even more spectacular as the   Toy Train   steadily climbs its way through forests of Himalayan cedar and rhododendron to the historic and culturally-rich hillside city of Shimla, former summer capital of British India.

Travelling aboard the Toy Train

Several trains travel the Kalka-Shimla Railway, offering every standard of travel from the most basic scheduled services to the thoroughly luxurious heritage coaches. At this latter end of the scale, two special carriages - The Shivalik Palace and The Shivalik Queen - allow passengers to make this remarkable journey in true colonial style and comfort.

Originally built in 1966 and 1974 respectively, both of these carriages were fully refurbished at the end of the twentieth century. Decorated and furnished in lavish style, both The Shivalik Palace and The Shivalik Queen offer comfortable seating, modern facilities and panoramic windows which offer perfect views of the railway's ever-changing and wonderful landscapes.

Please note the heritage coaches are not always in operation. See our individual tours for information around standard of travel on the Toy Train.

 

 

Toy Train

Useful information about the Toy Train

Most passengers agree that beyond Barog the route's scenery becomes even more spectacular as the Toy Train steadily climbs its way through forests of Himalayan cedar and rhododendron to the historic and culturally-rich hillside city of Shimla, former summer capital of British India.

The Kalka-Shimla Railway's location in north-west India can be prone to extreme weather conditions with summer temperatures reaching as high as 45°C, (113°F) and up to twenty-four inches of snow in the winter. The last tunnel on the line before Shimla, Tunnel 103, is reputed to be haunted by the ghost of a British colonial gentleman who enjoys chatting to passengers as they travel through the tunnel.

 

 

 

Toy Train

 

 

Kathryn Cambridge
Kathryn
Helen Laverack
Helen
Lynne Broadley
Lynne
Julie Pacalon
Julie
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