Want to go for an old fashioned train ride ? Try the Nilgiri Mountain Railway ride between Coonnoor and Udagamandalam (Ooty). Here is an old fashioned steam engine, chugging up and down the steepest grades in Asia. It may look like an adult sized charming version of toy trains, but don’t let its charm fool you. This is a fully functional rail boasts engineering achievements that stood the tests of time.
This hill rail line is over a 100 years old and is designated a World Heritage Site . The ride itself is a no frills attached affair, just the way it was meant to be.
This British built rail line has been running the old fashioned steam engines for a long time. The original coal fired engines , which were in use for over 80 years, have been replaced by the diesel engines. One of these old engines is on display at the station yard.
I would recommend getting your tickets in advance as it is a popular tourist attraction.
The short stretch of rails about 46 kms winds through hills and forests with beautiful panoramic views . Photo opportunities are plenty, and I would suggest riding both ways !!
This is part of the tracks are isolated from the other sections of the rail network due to its width (meter gauge for the curious ) .
Overhangs , cliffs , paddy fields , tunnels , bridges and general life .. the views are breathtaking. Depending on the season you will be greeted by waterfalls, green lush paddy fields, birds, monkeys and an occasional deer or two.
Nilgirils itself is very charming , and otty though at times very touristy is worth a visit once . If you could I would suggest a drive from Bangalore to Ooty – like we did. Part of the drive is a bit of an adrenaline rush, with winding roads about 36 sharp bends . Well we didn’t count after the first ten we lost count as the road itself became challenging :-). Just make sure that you are navigating it during daylight hours .
Here are a few scenes along the way