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The Northeast Frontier Railway recently has introduced a new service namely “Steam Jungle Tea Safari” between Siliguri Junction and Rongtong station section o­n the UNESCO World Heritage site - Darjeeling Himalayan Railway (DHR). This Steam hauled Toy Train service was started from 30th August, 2021 to fulfil the demands of tourists and to also promote the local tourism sector.

The “Steam Jungle Tea Safari” toy train service has been planned to run o­n regular basis depending o­n demand. It is provided with the facilities of Vistadome coach and hauled by heritage steam engine. The Toy Train travels through scenic beauty of the tea gardens apart from breathtaking views of lower Himalayan hills. Tourists can enjoy the o­n train services while making celebrations by riding through the unique “Steam Jungle Tea Safari”. There are provisions of 14 passengers in the Vistadome coach. However additional coach can also be attached depending o­n demands.

The train (No. 52556) provides up - down evening services leaving from Siliguri junction at 14-45 hours to reach Rongtong at 16-20 hours. In return journey, the train departs from Rongtong at 16-40 hours to reach Siliguri junction at 18-05 hours. The train has stoppage at Sukna station during both way journey. Interested tourists can also make a visit to the museum at Sukna station. During this three-hour journey, tourists can enjoy the flavour of the world famous Darjeeling tea.

Since the introduction of this Toy Train, N. F. Railway is getting good response from tourists. This unique “Steam Jungle Tea Safari” is an ideal way to celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, and get-togethers o­n a UNESCO World Heritage site.N. F. Railway is hopeful to attract more and more tourists and promote the tourism industry in the region in coming days.

(Guneet Kaur)

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