Duration : 16 Nights / 17 Days
Loction : North India, North East India and South India
Best Season : October to April
Category : Cultural, Heritage and India’s Mountain Railway Tour
Covering : Kalka Shimla Mountain Railways, Darjeeling Himalayan Mountain Railways and The Nilgiri Mountain Railways of India
You can take it : As a private, personalised tour (tour dates would be of your choice)
Special About Tour :
This amazing Mountain Railways of India tour, takes us to some of the glorious country's most exciting sights. On our fascinating journey we discover the three most famous and popular Mountain railways tour of India in this one tour itinerary. On this one tour you will explore three different regions with the three different World Famous, UNESCO Heritage sites of Mountain railways of India including The Kalka Shimla Railway in North India, Darjeeling Himalayan Railways in North East India and The Nilgiri Mountain Railways of India in the South Part of India.
We follow in the footsteps of the British Raj in India, from the Former British Summer Capital Shimla to Himalayan foothills to Darjeeling and further Journey on the Blue Mountain Railway- The Nilgiri Mountain Railways in South India.Tamil Nadu'sBlue Mountain Railway is one of the world's steepest rack-and-pinion railways.
Each day of this tour itinerary offers an opportunity to explore superb historic architecture, exquisitely carved temples, oldest churches and natural attractions including spice plantations, tea gardens, beautiful calm hill stations, cultural diversity and much– much more. It also provides you a chance to meet the locals on the way and to enjoy the local exotic cuisine on Banana leaf, visit the local fruits, flowers and vegetable markets, a chance to enjoy the world famous Ayurveda body message therapies, traditional classical performing arts and folk dances.
The tour is specially designed for the Heritage Train lovers and is one of the Great Rail journey tour in India which is unparalleled and unforgettable!
Brief Itinerary : Delhi ( 03 Nights) > Shimla (03 Nights) > Darjeeling (03 Nights) > Bangalore (01 Night)> Mysore (02 Nights) > Ooty (01 Night) > Mettupalayam (01 Night) > Cochin (02 Nights)
You will be met from your flight to Delhi International Airport by Summit Safari’s representative, and he will accompany you to your hotel in Delhi. Rest of the day is free at leisure to relax after the flight.
After breakfast, in the morning we will take you for a sightseeing tour of Delhi to view some of the famous sights of the town with. We will take a walking tour of the Old Delhi covering the Chandani Chowk, historic Red Fort, and the busy market. If interested we will arrange for a bicycle rickshaw ride in old Delhi or a Tuk- Tuk (Three wheeler) ride in New Delhi for you. We will also visit and the Raj Ghat, a memorial built for Mahatma Gandhi, a prominent figure in India’s struggle for freedom, Bangla Sahib Gurudwara (a sikh shrine) , drive past Lutyen’s New Delhi and will also visit Gandhi Smriti, also known as the Birla house where –Mahatma Gandhi had lived the last 144 days of his life from 09 September 1947 to 30 January 1948 when he was assassinated in 78th year of life at Birla House Prayer Grounds by Nathuram Godse. Thus, the house treasures many memories of his life. Later we also visit the National rail museum in Delhi. Second night in the same hotel in Delhi.
Early in the morning, you will be assisted to board the super fast Shatabdi train from New Delhi (07:40 AM) to Kalka (11:50 AM). Breakfast will be served to you on this first class train. At Kalka board the World Heritage toy train from Kalka (12:10 PM) to Shimla (05:20 PM). This train travels very slowly up to Shimla and you see wonderful views en route as the train climbs from the plains into the mountains. You will reach Shimla in the evening and will transfer to your hotel.
After breakfast at your hotel your guide will take you for a sightseeing tour of Shimla town. We will visit the famous monkey temple (dedicated to Lord Hanuman) on the top of Jakhoo hills, Christ Church of Shimla, the Gaiety Theatre, the Mall Road with its scandal point, and the famous Viceregal Lodge where agreements for the partition of India and Pakistan were worked out. Shimla is ideal for walks, and life revolves around the busy Mall in the centre of town. Evening free to explore of your own. Second night in the same hotel at Shimla.
Shimla is ideal for walks. If you will be interested we will be taking you on a very pretty walk “Sipur village and nature walk (3-4 hrs)”. We will return back to the hotel by late afternoon. Third night at the same hotel in Shimla.
After breakfast in the morning, you will have free time to relax and later in the afternoon you will be transfer by road to Kalka railway station (90 kms / 4 hrs) from where we will board the Shatabdhi express train to New Delhi, from Kalka departure at (5:45 PM) to New Delhi arrival at (9:50 PM). Enroute to Kalka we will stop for the lunch break at Barog. Dinner will be served to you on this train. On arrival at New Delhi railway station you will be met by your driver and we will transfer you to your hotel in New Delhi.
Today morning as per your flight schedule we will transfer you to New Delhi airport from where you will board your flight to Bagdogra. On arrival at Bagdogra you will be met by our driver and we will drive you to Darjeeling, famous for tea gardens and the Darjeeling Himalayan Mountain Railways. On arrival at Darjeeling check in to your hotel and rest of the time is free at Lesuire.
Today early morning we will drive you to Tiger hill sunrise point in Darjeeling to witness the spectacular sunrise- from behind Kanchenjunga, India’s highest mountain and the world’s third highest mountain. The peak changes colour with the adjusting sunlight, casting orange, red and pink hues on their surroundings. After returning to the hotel for a leisurely breakfast, later in the afternoon we will visit we visit Darjeeling’s Mountaineering Institute, which is the final resting place of Tensing Norgay, who reached the summit of Everest with Sir Edmund Hilary in 1953. It also tells the stories of the many varied attempts to scale the peak. We will also have the opportunity to see the Red Panda and Snow Leopard at Darjeeling Zoo and the Tibetan Refuge centre. Evening free to explore the town and the local market.
Today after breakfast we will take you for a joy ride on the world famous Darjeeling Himalayan Mountain Railways of India, from Darjeeling at 09:45 AM to Kurseong at 12:45 AM, via Ghum – the highest railway station in the area at 7,407 ft – and back to Darjeeling. The distance of 31 kms, is covered with the help of a steam engine in 3 hrs 35 minutes. On arrival at Kurseong you will be met by our driver and he will drive back you to Darjeeling. We will arrive back to Darjeeling by afternoon. Evening free to explore your own. Third night in the same heritage hotel / tea estate in Darjeeling.
Today morning we will drive you from Darjeeling to Bagdogra airport from where you will board your afternoon flight to Bangalore. You will arrive Bangalore by evening. On arrival at Bangalore you will be transferred to the hotel. Overnight stay in Bangalore.
Today morning after the breakfast we will take you for the half day of sightseeing in Bangalore and after the traditional south India food in a local restaurant at MTR, we will continue our drive to Mysore. We will arrive Mysore by late evening. Overnight stay in Mysore.
Today morning after breakfast around 09:00 AM we will leave for a sightseeing tour of Mysore and will visit The Mysore Railway Museum, Jagmohan Art Gallery, Chamundi Hills, The Palace of Mysore. You can have lunch in a local eating places where you will be offered Sambhar and vada / idli (South Indian Food). Later we will take you to visit the local market in Mysore, where you can have your time to shop the famous Mysore silk items or raw silk fabric. Before dinner we will take you to see the light illumination of Mysore Fort between 07:00 PM to 08:00 PM. Second night in the same hotel at Mysore.
After breakfast we will drive you to Ooty. Enroute we will drive through the Bandi Pur and Nagarhole National parks. Enroute you have chances to see the wild elephants, deers, etc. Reach ooty by afternoon, check in to your hotel and have some time for your lunch and to relax. Evening is free to walk around the local market and the English church at Ooty. Ooty was founded by the British and was used as a weekend retreat for British colonial rulers and served as the summer headquarters of the Madras Presidency, offering a significantly cooler climate during the fiercely hot summer months. The region surrounding Ooty has been producing tea for over 100 years and is known for its dark, aromatic varieties. Today we will reach the Nilgiri Mountains also famous as the Blue Mountains.
Today after breakfast we will take you to visit the Doddabetta Peak: It is the highest peak (2,623 m) in the Nilgiris, about 10 km from Ooty, which offers beautiful visits of the Nilgiri Hill Ranges. One can have a panoramic view of the landscape from here. Apart from coffee and tea plantations, trees like conifers, eucalyptus, pine and the wattle dot the hillside in Ooty. Late we drive you to Ooty (Udagamandalam Railway Station) from where will board the Nilgiri Hill Railways at 02:00 PM to Mettupalayam arriving by 05:40 PM. The name was changed during the British rule from Udagamandalam to Ootacamund, later shortened to Ooty. This steam train was built during the British period in 1908. The railway still relies on its fleet of steam locomotives between Connor and Mettupalayam, where the steam engine is changed to diesel engine for its further journey to Mettupalayam. The NMR track is 1,000 mm (3 ft 3 3/8 in) gauge and the railway is isolated from other metre gauge lines. Between Mettupalayam and Coonoor, the line uses the Abt rack and pinion system to climb the steep gradient. It has the steepest track in Asia with a maximum gradient of 8.33%.This narrow gauge mountain train winds through 46 km of rail track( 5 hrs) through forests, tea plantations, 16 tunnels and crosses more than 250 bridges, starting from Mettupalayam on the plains, to Ooty in the Nilgiri Hills. The stunning views of the Nilgiri Hills with its forest, water streams, wildlife and birds are one of the most fascinating experiences for tourists. We will reach Mettupalayam by afternoon and will be picked up by our driver and transfer to the hotel. Mettupalayam is a small town with the railway junction for the Nilgiri Hill Railway.
Today morning we will drive you to Cochin (7-8 hrs). Enroute we will enjoy the views and will stop for lunch break and comfort breaks. We will arrive Cochin by late afternoon and will check into the hotel. Cochin, also known as Kochi or Fort Cochin. Cochin, popularly known as the ‘Queen of Arabian Sea’, is the cosmopolitan commercial capital of Kerala ,Cochin is a fine natural Harbour. Cochin was the centre of Indian spice trade for many centuries, and was known to the Yavanas (Greeks and Romans) as well as Jews, Arabs, and Chinese since ancient timesRest of the day at Lesuire.
Today morning after breakfast we will take you for a half day of walking tour to visit the famous heritage sites of old Cochin ( Fort Cochin). Having been under the control of the Portuguese, the Dutch and the British, The Fort cochin has a rich and varied history. You will Explore the heritage part by foot ( 2 hrs) and visit the Vasco the Gama square, the Chinese fishing nets, the church of St Francis originally built in 1503, is the oldest European church in India and has great historical significance where once the Vasco Da Gama was buried. Later we will drive to visit the Mattancherry Palace, also known as the Dutch Palace, in Mattancherry, which features Kerala murals depicting Hindu temple art, portraits and exhibits of the Rajas (Kings) of Kochi. It was built by the Portuguese and presented to Veera Kerala Varma (1537–65), Raja (King) of Kochi. We will also visit the Jewish Synagogue- or the Paradesi Synagogue, is the oldest synagogue in the Commonwealth of Nations. It was built in 1568 by Cochin Jewish community. The synagogue is located in the quarter of Old Cochin known as Jew Town and is the only one of the seven synagogues in the area Later on return back to the hotel and have some rest before in the around 05:00 PM we will take you to visit the famous traditional Kathakali dance show 2 hrs. Later on return back to your hotel for the second night in the same hotelin Forth Kochi / Cochin.
Please Note:The Jewish Synagogue is closed on Friday and Saturdays, so we can visit it on alternative days.
Today as per your return flight schedule we will transfer you to the Cochin international airport to board your return flight back home.
This is where the tour ends. However, if you wish to stay longer in Delhi or want to take extension tour, we can make arrangements for you to be transferred to the airport at a later time.
End of the services and the tour…!
Please Note: Cochin is an international airport in Kerala in south part of India, there are flights to Dubai (middle east Asia) / Singapore (South East Asia). If you are going back /coming from U.K / Europe or from Australia you can get your connecting flights at these places. We would like to discuss these things with you at the time of your booking of the holidays with us. You can fly with Emirates / Air India or similar, with a change en route.
Important Note: This is the itinerary for a tour which we run regularly. It can be altered & customised and we like to discuss plans with clients and can make suggestions about special places to visit depending on our clients’ interests, and available time. You can get an idea of your holidays from the mentioned tours. We do not club our clients to groups. We suggest, plan and organize only tailor-made, personalised tour holidays to India for each client. Either you can make your own group, we would be happy to organize a personalise tour for your private group.
Our Knowledgeable tour escorts is with you throughout the trip to all the famous sights and wherever required a local knowledgeable guide is provided on spot for your tour to make history and culture come alive through the stories that unfold throughout the journey. The itinerary is planned carefully , in such a way that you get enough time to acclimatise properly while driving through The Great Himalayas and to relax or to make walk in the local area and to experience the authentic life of the people living in these remote parts of Indian Himalayas…!
You will follow the itinerary as a private tour, accompanied by one of our excellent Guides/ tour escorts through out the trip. Internal travel chauffeur-driven luxury jeep / car.
These destinations are the most sought-after tourist destinations of India. Every year these places greets thousands of people from across the globe. To serve the best, there is no problem regarding accommodation on the tour. These places have plenty of hotels which are well equipped with all modern amenities and comprises variety of luxury, deluxe, heritage and budget hotels. One can choose the place of accommodation according to one’s requirement and budget.
You stay in comfortable mid range Indian Hotels or A class star category luxury hotels which offer immaculate hospitality to guests, all as preferred by you. We would like to discuss and make suggestions about accommodation at the time of planning your holidays with us.
Meals Plan: Room + Breakfast.