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When it comes to exploring the country, nothing quite compares to travelling by train. Train travel makes us nostalgic. It’s a reminiscence of how train engines, buying comic books on the railway station, and getting our much-loved window seat, used to excite us as a kid.

Even today, staring out of the window and just watching the landscape change gives us the much-needed break to savour the little things in our chaotic, fast-paced lives. If travelling the world is on your list, it’s time to hit the pause button and go on a well-deserved trip to rediscover yourself.

Here are five breathtaking train journeys that need to be a part of your bucket list:

The Himalayan Queen (Kalka – Shimla)

The Kalka-Shimla Railway is a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2008. As the toy train moves through the lush green pine forests, the cedar-scented air hits you. From flower meadows to rivulets, nature lovers will not run out of things to look at. The journey will not disappoint thrill seekers either – the steep track and sharp curves will keep their adrenaline level high.

Darjeeling Himalayan Railway (Jalpaiguri – Darjeeling)

This smoke-billowing and whistle blowing train has found itself in many Bollywood films, from Parineeta to Barfi! The route is picturesque from the very beginning, and promises to be a special treat for chai lovers, as it passes by the idyllic tea plantations. Bonus: a view of the majestic snow-capped peak of Kanchenjunga.

Island Express (Kanyakumari – Trivandrum)

The journey is a short two-hour one, but the route from the southern tip of India to God’s Own Country is one of the most beautiful sights you will ever behold. The train travels through a dense green expanse pleasant to the eye and offers a view of nature at its pristine best.

Mandovi Express (Madgaon – Mumbai)

With the Sahyadri hills on one side and the Arabian sea on the other, expect nothing less than a stunning view. The train travels through paddy fields bordered by clusters of coconut trees and coastal peripheries, giving the photography enthusiasts something to look forward to. Perhaps, the journey is more beautiful than the destination itself.

The Desert Queen (Jodhpur – Jaisalmer)

If you haven’t enjoyed the view of the golden hues of the desert sand and camels grazing in the distance, you don’t know what you’re missing out on. Go on a desert safari aboard this train and experience a visual delight – of the golden sand enveloped by the warm red glow of the sun setting.

So what are you waiting for? Hop on one of these trains for the journey of your lifetime.

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