The Railways have been around in India for almost 165 years and yet the romance of Railways still remains intact, especially the undying charm of railways in the hills. Today, when high speed travel has become the norm for travellers, people still take time off to chug away on serpentine hilly tracks. One of the most scenic train journeys in India is experienced when travelling through the Kalka-Shimla Railway.
As the former 'summer capital' of the British Raj, Shimla is an important holiday destination for Indians today. Come summer or snow, tourists rush to Shimla either to beat the heat or to catch snow-flakes. Four premium services are available for travellers at the Kalka-Shimla Railway: The Deluxe Rail Motor Car, the Shivalik Deluxe Express, the Shivalik Palace (tourist coach) and the Shivalik Queen Tourist Coach.
The Deluxe Rail Motor Car is a visual delight which resembles a vintage bus of the Second World War with a transparent fibre-glass roof for a clear view of the sky. The Shivalik Deluxe Express is a connecting service to Howrah-Kalka Mail where the coaches are equipped with wall-to-wall carpeting, wide glass windows and reversible cushioned chairs. The Shivalik Palace Tourist Coach provides a luxurious ambience for a dream holiday with folding cushioned beds, refrigerator, on-board-kitchen and dining table with cushioned chairs. A comparatively late entrant on the Kalka-Shimla section is the Shivalik Queen, equipped with ultramodern facilities and fittings like wall-to-wall carpets, altimeter, fancy lights, chrome-plated luggage racks. These trains make the journey across the gorgeous hilly regions of Shimla comfortable and luxurious, without burning a hole in the pocket.