A ride on Nilgiri rail to double up as heritage walk
Within a month or so, tourists visiting the Mettupalayam station to travel in the Nilgiri Mountain Rail, will get to enjoy a heritage walk around some of the most important monuments of the mountain rail.
A guided tour around the NMR museum, locomotive maintenance facility, track maintenance facilities and staff quarters await them, giving a glimpse into how one of the steepest mountain rails in India came into being.
The heritage walk is likely to cover all the spots at the station, from where work on the NMR once began. “It also shows the end of the metre gauge track and start of the broad gauge track. If they do take the guests on a small trek, they can show them the Kallar station too,” said founder of the Heritage Steam Chariot Trust, K Natarajan.
Though the exact duration, frequency and method to offer the service have not yet been decided, officials are likely to offer it during the weekends and based on the response, extend it. “We will be visiting the Mettupalayam station next week, checking out all the suitable historic spots and work out the logistics of offering the service. We plan to offer it during the ongoing tourist season,” divisional railway manager Hari Shankar Verma told TOI.
In a bid to aggressively promote tourism, Salem division has been taking multiple efforts to promote Nilgiris Mountain Railway. Recently, it had decided to display some of the oldest locomotives at major railway stations like Coimbatore Junction, Coonoor, Udhagamandalam and Salem. It was a little over a year ago, that the division opened an exclusive museum for the mountain railway at Mettupalayam and opened a shop selling souvenirs of NMR in Coonoor.
Noting the positive response, they were considering opening more souvenir stores in Ooty and Mettupalayam.
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Source : TOI