After Darjeeling and Shimla, our most favourite Indian mountain railway is the Nilgiri Mountain Railway. It was started in the year 1908 and is a meter gauge single line track. It is a 46Km ride and connects Mettupalayam with Ooty. The Ooty Toy train is very famous for it’s heritage and fantastic scenic experience. If you want to feel the wildness of the Nilgiri then Ooty – Coonor Train journey should be in your priority list.
The train has both first and second class coaches. If you want to admire the beauty of the Nilgiri peacefully then I would suggest to go for the first class ticket. This journey reminded me of the famous song “Chaiya Chaiya” from the movie “Dil Se” and I literally wanted to climb up to the roof of the train and dance.
Ooty Toy train
Mostly, people take the train from Ooty to Coonor and back. It is a 1 hour journey. The train runs on all the days of the week from 7:10AM to 12:00PM and again from 2:00PM to 5:35PM. The fares are as follows:
- First class – 205/-
- Second class – 30/-
- Unreserved Category – 15/-
Ooty – Coonor Train journey Experience
It was mid March when we went to Ooty for a weekend trip, on the second day of our trip we took the Coonor to Ooty Toy train ride. We started the day late and by the information we got from our hotel about the long ticket queue on the previous day, we were not quite optimistic about getting the tickets ( At that time, booking the tickets online wasn’t operational or might be down for some time, I don’t remember actually, resulting in a big queue of enthusiastic people). We missed the morning train from Ooty so what we did was, we took a local bus and went to Coonor. Trust me, we enjoyed the bus journey a lot as there wasn’t many tourists, it was full of kids and local people, who were very sweet. The roads were curvy and the scenic beauty of the Nilgiris were never ending.
By the time, we reached Coonoor, there was already a huge queue infront of the ticket counter. The train that we missed in the morning, was supposed to reach Coonoor and make a way back to Ooty; the tourists were waiting for that. We missed the train that we had already missed, once again, as all the coaches were full before we could board the train. So we waited for another half an hour and finally it was our turn to enjoy the ride. The Train arrived; in blue and yellow it was looking glossy and colorful. The station was very small yet very clean and beautiful. After some photo clicks, we finally settled down on our seats and the journey started. Everyone started staring out of the window, overwhelmed by the beauty of the hills.
The train was running through the wilderness of Nilgiris; on one side was the deep abyss and on the other side was the dense forest which occasionally was substituted by small number of houses surrounded by the trees. It was near about half an hour of unforgettable journey, then we reached Ooty. 😉