Mountain Railways of India

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The Mountain Railways of India are the best example of bold, ingenious engineering solutions for the problem of establishing an effective rail link through rugged, mountainous terrain. This is the only reason- the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, the Nilgiri Mountain Railway, and the Kalka–Shimla Railway, are designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

1. Kalka-Shimla Railway

Kalka-Shimla Toy Train

It is 2ft. inch (762 mm) narrow gauge railway in North-West India travelling along a mostly mountainous route from Kalka to Shimla. It is known for breath-taking views of the hills and the surrounding villages. It was built by HS Harington and operated by Northern Railway.

The train journey starts from Kalka to Shimla and from Shimla to Kalka, passing through many scenic towns and landscapes of the lush Himalayas.

2. Darjeeling Toy Train

Darjeeling Toy Train

It is also known as the 'Toy Train'. It is 2ft. (610 mm) narrow-gauge railway based on the zig-zag and loop-line that runs between New Jalpaiguri and Darjeeling in West Bengal. It runs about 83 kilometres long. It was built by Franklin Prestage and operated by Northeast Frontier Railway.

3. The Nilgiri Mountain Railway

Nilgiri Toy Train

It lies in Tamil Nadu, which was built by the British in 1908 and was initially operated by the Madras (Now Chennai) railway. This railway is operated still relies on its fleet of steam locomotives. In July 2005, UNESCO designated it as a World Heritage Site. It is owned by the Southern Railway Zone and operated by the Salem railway division.3.