Last Updated: Sep 14, 2017 

Darjeeling Toy Train
Rides, Services & Schedule

 
 
What to expect 
Riding the Toy Train of Darjeeling Himalayan Railways (DHR) has always remained a coveted experience to the tourists. Only few would let go such an opportunity. And there is a clear reason why so. After all this Toy Train has been accorded the UNESCO World Heritage status, and that's for something special. 
 
Operating on narrow gauge tracks since 1880s and providing an important transport link to various parts of Darjeeling hills and lower plains, the Toy Train is still unmatched when it comes to absorbing magnificent beauty of the mountains. 
 
 
 
Where else can you find a small steam engine pulling mini coaches up the steep mountains through breathtaking landscapes and overcoming almost impossible curves and gradients using sheer engineering ingenuity and creative skills. The snail pace at which the train moves through the hilly terrain is at times so slow that you can often see the local school children hopping on and off the train on the move. 
 
Although the diesel engines used these days are faster and more powerful, the original steam engines still operate in some sections of DHR and also for joyrides. The steam loco drawn trains sometimes tend to skid in steep gradients. You can often see an attendant standing in front of the engine and sprinkling sand on the track to overcome such difficulties, particularly during monsoon time. 
 
Toy Train, Darjeeling Himalayan Railway (DHR) 
Darjeeling DHR Toy Train 
 
Won't you like to experience a ride on such heritage transport that once provided the first and the most important mountain transportation link in the country? And the one that offers a unique ride with picturesque mountain views. You will pass by villages and local shops on the way with children on the street waving at you as you take this relaxed and charming journey through the hills. 
 
Check out DHR Toy Train Story to know why DHR Toy Train received the World Heritage status and remains close to the heart of many Indians. 
 
You can enjoy the toy train rides in several ways. There are joy ride tours as well as regular transport services on toy trains. First, about the joy rides and tours: 
 
Toy Train Joyride - Darjeeling to Ghum & Back 
Toy train joy rides operate from Darjeeling Railway Station. It's a 2-hour round trip from Darjeeling up to Ghum and back covering a total distance of 14kms. There are four such round trips in a day, two in the morning half and two in the afternoon. The train stops for 10 minutes at the Batasia Loop. At Batasia the train makes a loop around a wonderful manicured garden. The view of Darjeeling town and the snow peaks of Kanchenjunga from here are unparalleled. The War Memorial built in honor of the Gorkha soldiers who sacrificed their lives is located at the center of the Garden. 
 
 
 
Ghum is the highest altitude station on the Darjeeling Himalayan Rail track. Altitude of Ghum is 2225.7 meters (7407 ft). Here the toy train stops for 30 minutes for a visit to Darjeeling Himalayan Railway museum. The DHR Museum is located at the station premises. The highlight here is the oldest toy train engine - The Baby Sivok. The entree fee to the museum is included in the ticket price. DHR sends by post a certificate validating your ride on the toy train so that you can cherish the memories of your ride. 
 
Toy Train Joyride Schedule 
Currently 18 rides are scheduled from the morning (starting at 7:40am) till afternoon (the last train being at 4:20pm). So there are ample opportunities to choose your time based on your convenience and plan for the day. The timings and number of rides do change depending on seasonal demands. 
 
And what more... depending on your preference, you can avail either a steam engine hauled toy train or one with a diesel engine. The steam engine train of course offers the authentic experience of the heritage and the colonial aura when such toy trains where first created. But such rides are quite costlier too compared to diesel engine rides. 
 
There are usually two first class coaches provided in a steam engine train, while three first class coaches in diesel engine joyride toy train. 
 
TIP: Note that during high season, there is a lot of rush for the rides and you should try to book well in advance. Don't plan to buy the joyride tickets after you reach Darjeeling because you may not get them. Just in case you don't get the joyride tickets, an alternative plan is to buy a ticket on the regular morning toy train operating between Darjeeling and Kurseong, which too goes via Batasia and Ghum. Get off at Ghum and take a shared jeep back to Darjeeling... almost similar experience as the joy ride. However this is a diesel engine hauled train and not steam engine. You can buy tickets online through Indian railway site irctc.co.in . 
 
Toy Train Joyride Fare (Fare updated: February, 2017
Diesel Engine Rides: Rs. 800/-. All first class seats. 
Steam Engine Rides: Rs. 1,300/-. All first class seats. 
 
NOTE:  
1) Above are round trip fares Darjeeling-Ghum-Darjeeling.  
2) No concession in Darjeeling Toy Train Joy Rides to Children of age 5 or above, neither to senior citizens. No tickets required for children below 5 years.  
3) The fares of Steam Engine pulled trains are higher because they represent the original heritage trains and their maintenance cost is also higher. Fares include admission to the DHR Ghum Museum. 
4) A First Class coach has individual reclining seats and can accommodate up to 17 persons. 
 
How to book DHR Toy Train Joyrides 
The toy train in Darjeeling is like any other normal train and the process of booking seats is similar. You can book the joyride either online though the Indian Railway's website or at any computerized reservation counters. Visit How to book Toy Train Joyrides in Darjeeling to know about all the details of booking a joyride (both online and offline at the counters). 
 
Toy Train Jungle Safari - Siliguri to Rangtong & Return 
This round trip toy train safari (3 hours) operates between Siliguri Junction and Rangtong Station. Rangtong is a small village on the roadside and at an altitude of 1404 ft. It's 16kms from Siliguri Junction. The train usually leaves at 10:30am from Siliguri Junction, goes past Sukna, and reaches Rangtong at 11:50am. It halts there for 20 minutes and returns to Siliguri Junction at 1:35pm. The total round trip distance is 32kms and takes about 3 hours. 
 
 
 
The Jungle Safari takes you through the Mahananda Wildlife Sanctuary located around Sukna and Rangtong station, and offers breathtaking view of the valley from Tindharia. This safari is a great treat for the nature lovers. There are two or three coaches provided depending on the demand. The Toy Train is pulled by a 'B' class steam locomotive engine. 
 
NOTE: Earlier the Jungle Safari used to go up to Tindharia / Gayabari and return making it a round trip of about 6 hours. Now it has been reduced to a round trip of only about 3 hours. 
 
Toy Train Jungle Safari Fare (Fare updated: February, 2017
Siliguri - Rangtong Round Trip Fare (First Class Coach): Rs. 610/- 
 
How to book Toy Train Jungle Safari 
Visit How to book Toy Train Joyrides in Darjeeling to know how you can book the jungle safari. 
 
Regular DHR Toy Train Services 
There are regular diesel engine hauled toy train services that provide regular transport connections within Darjeeling district. One of the most popular ones for tourists is the service between New Jalpaiguri (NJP) station to Darjeeling which passes through picturesque mountain landscapes and villages. 
 
The track often runs side by side the main motor road (The National Highway 55 which is popularly known as Hill Cart Road) and even crisscrosses the road several times. There are breathtaking zigzags and loops on the way to help the train negotiate steep gradients. 
 
 
 
New Jalpaiguri (NJP) to Darjeeling 
(Train timings are subject to change) 
 
The train (no. 52541) leaves NJP at 8:30am and reaches Darjeeling at 3:35pm (Monday, Wednesday, Friday). Total distance is 88kms. The return train (no. 52540) departs Darjeeling at 8am and reaches NJP at 3:10pm (Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday). 
 
The train is hauled by a Diesel engine. It usually has two first class coaches and a luggage van to store luggage. It takes about 7 hours to complete the one-way journey. 
 
Between NJP and Darjeeling, the train stops at Siliguri Town, Siliguri Junction, Sukna, Rangtong, Tindharia, Gayabari, Mahanadi, Kurseong, Tung, Sonada, Ghum. 
 
Visit Darjeeling Toy Train Route & Journey in order to view the complete route of the toy train and station wise arrival & departure timings. Note: During the high tourist season, additional coaches and services may get added. 
 
Kurseong to Darjeeling 
(Train timings are subject to change) 
 
1) The train (no. 52545) leaves Kurseong at 3pm reaching Darjeeling at 5:50pm. Total distance is 31kms. The down train (no. 52544) departs Darjeeling at 10:15am reaching Kurseong at 13:10pm. It is usually hauled by a Diesel Engine having 2 or 3 coaches (number & combination of first and second class coaches vary). 
 
2) There is also a daily school train that runs between Kurseong and Darjeeling. This diesel engine hauled train starts from Kurseong at 6:30am in the morning (no. 52587) and reaches Darjeeling at 9:05am. The train returns from Darjeeling at 4pm (no. 52588) reaching Kurseong at 6:30pm in the evening. 
 
3) A steam engine hauled toy train known as Red Panda has been introduced on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday between Darjeeling and Kurseong. It has two first class coaches. The train 52570 starts from Darjeeling at 9:15am and reaches Kurseong at 12:30pm. The return train 52571 departs Kurseong at 2pm and reaches Darjeeling at 5:45pm. Update March 2017: Red Panda is not operating currently. 
 
NOTE: Do not plan to board with heavy luggage on the toy train which originates from Kurseong. They do not have luggage vans. Luggage space in the normal coaches are limited to overhead racks and below the seats. 
 
Regular DHR Toy Train Fares (Fare updated: February, 2017
NOTE: First Class toy train coaches have individual reclining seats like standard chair cars. The seats in Second Class coaches are joined and non-reclining. Second class coaches accommodate more passengers than First Class coaches. 
 
DIESEL ENGINE 
Darjeeling to NJP (or Reverse, one way): First Class - Rs. 1285.00 
Darjeeling to Ghum: First Class - Rs.410, Second Class - Rs. 30. 
Darjeeling to Sonada: First Class - Rs.535, Second Class - Rs. 45. 
Darjeeling to Tung: First Class - Rs.555, Second Class - Rs. 45. 
Darjeeling to Kurseong: First Class - Rs. 680, Second Class - Rs. 60. 
 
NOTE: Second Class is available in limited regular trains, while First Class is available in all trains. 
 
How to book a regular DHR Toy Train Seat 
Visit How to book Regular Toy Train rides in Darjeeling to know how you can book a seat. 
 
DHR Toy Train Charters 
How about chartering a DHR Toy Train with the steam engine hooting it's way through the mountains and lovely landscape as you enjoy the ride with your family and friends in complete exclusivity!! It's possible and that too at an attractive rate. 
 
You can also book it to celebrate a birthday party or hold a private function. In fact you can also have flexible timings of your choice. Check out Chartering DHR Toy Trains
 
 
 
Related Articles 
 
1) Check out DHR Toy Train Story to know about the complete story of the toy train including its history and how it was introduced as one of the highest mountain railways by the British. 
 
2) Check out Darjeeling Tours & Sightseeing for many other great tours and rides in Darjeeling. 
 
Visitors' Reviews/Comments 
 
Katja (September 2017) 
Hello,  we will travel to Darjeeling in October. As we fly to Siliguri and want to take the Toy Train to Darjeeling, we are wondering if we need a ticket for the train in advance, or if we can book it in Siliguri. We arrive Friday, 13th October, and want to take the train Monday, 16th October (therefore we have some days to organise permits and tickets). Thank you very much for your help, kind regards. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) September 2017 
Hi, toy train is not operating currently due to unrest in Darjeeling. You can check in irctc (railway) site few days before your departure and book if available. 
 
George from Australia (August 2017) 
Hi, You advise that the Toy Train from NJP to Darjeeling No 52541 runs Monday, Wednesday & Friday. On the irctc.co.in website you can book 7 days a week. Is there more than one Toy Train that does this trip? We are planning to get this train on a Thursday if it runs otherwise we have to spend another night in Siliguri and go on a Friday. Can you please advise. Kind Regards, 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) August 2017 
Hi, the toy train schedule changes frequently. Currently it's not operational due to political unrest in Darjeeling. Although irctc website might show available seats for future dates, the status might be updated later. So do check the status and weekly schedule few days before your planned arrival. 
 
S Roy (June 2017) 
Hi,  I am Dr. Roy.  Can you please guide me about the permissible baggage allowance for Toy train from NJP to Darjeeling as i am planning to travel this month end with 5 family members. Am in Pune and your guidance will help me plan my vacation. Regards. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) June 2017 
Hi, NJP to Darjeeling toy train has a luggage van (coach) attached. There is no luggage allowance as such (like any other trains). Heavy luggage has to be kept in the luggage van and not in the passenger coach. 
 
Sujeet (June 2017) 
Hi Raj, I am planning to visit Darjeeling next month and I am interested in taking Toy train ride from NJP to Darjeeling or Darjeeling to NJP. any one way is fine for me. I have few doubts about the Toy Train ride and I hope you can guide me about it: 
 
1. Is the Toy Train between NJP and Darjeeling operational? IRCTC is showing that tickets are available but some websites report that Toy Train between NJP and Darjeeling is not Operational. 2. Will I lose my money if I book the tickets through IRCTC and later I see that there is not train from NJP to Darjeeling?  3. Fare for Toy Train between NJP and Darjeeling is INR 1300 per person. Is the journey worth paying 1300 for 7 hours ride? Many people has mentioned that the Journey is not worth the money. It's dirty and boring.  Please advice. Thanks in advance.  
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) June 2017 
You should go by IRCTC website to know if the train is running for a day and book it. Like any other train, if it gets cancelled, the cancellation policy will apply and you can claim refunds. Enjoying the 7-hour ride is quite subjective and depends on the individual concerned. Many like to trace the entire historic narrow gauge DHR route to go through all stations, loops and zig-zags ... for them the journey has a different meaning compared to those who are looking only for enjoyment and views. If you belong to the second category, you can instead consider the 2-hour joyride from Darjeeling. 
 
Also note... toy trains have no toilets... for some it can cause discomfort. If you do plan to take the full ride, you can also consider taking the train from Siliguri (i.e. Siliguri Junction) ... you can avoid waiting times at Siliguri and the journey through the traffic congested plains. 
 
Sankar V (June 2017) 
I am planning to visit Darjeeling and return to NJP by toy train.  Will it cover steam ride and forest ride? 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) June 2017 
Darjeeling to NJP is a diesel engine hauled train.... you will pass through the forested area near the plains. 
 
Preeti Bhide (April 2017) 
Dear Mr. Raj, You have a wonderful forum. I have a question about taking the train to Darjeeling. My parents are visiting Darjeeling and arrive at Bagdogra on 30th April at around noon. I would like to book them on the train to Darjeeling but noticed that there is only one departure at 8:30am. Is there a possibility to join the same train at another station by catching up with a taxi, or is there a later train from Kurseong or some other station. Please advise. Thanks in advance for your help. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) April 2017 
First check if NJP - Darjeeling toy train is at all available on the day. They can try to catch the train from Kurseong, there are also other trains from Kurseong to Darjeeling. Check the train schedules from irctc website. But if they carry heavy luggage, then it can be a problem boarding the train from an intermediate station because only the one from NJP has a luggage van, and one can not keep heavy luggage in passenger coaches. 
 
Tim Alexander (April 2017) 
Hello, I am planning a trip to India starting this coming June. I plan to travel from Calcutta to Darjeeling in mid-june, and I want to take the toy train. I know that I first have to get from Sealdah to NJP, but after this I am not so sure what to do. This is because whilst I also know that ordinarily I could get the toy train from NJP straight to Darjeeling - because of damaged tracks at Tindharia - I can only board the toy train from Kurseong. This is my problem - I cannot find how to get from NJP to Kurseong + I can also not actually find where I can book the toy train. Regarding the latter, I know the station codes etc - but when I search for them on train booking websites they do not appear! Please help! Much appreciated if you do!! Thank you. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) April 2017 
Hi, the track has been repaired quite sometime back. You can board the train from NJP or Siliguri, however it runs on few days of the week. You can book your seat from Indian railway site irctc.co.in . 
 
Brenda D. (February 2017) 
Hi Raj, I plan on boarding the Toy Train at Siliguri.  Will there be enough room in the luggage van for my medium sized suitcase?  Also, how long is this portion of the trip? Thanks so much.   
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) February 2017 
Hi, yes... medium size suitcase is okay. Will take nearly 6.5 hours to Darjeeling. 
 
J K Parikh (January 2017) 
Dear RAJ, I went through many of your posts. Hats off to you. You are offering a great help to tourists. My query is that if I travel via Road DARJEELING TO NJP VIA MIRIK. Then also, is the toy train trip is so different that I need to incorporate it in my itinerary? Thanks... 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) January 2017 
Mirik route meets the main hill cart road at Ghum. This road runs parallel to the toy train track. So from Ghum onward up to Darjeeling (about 25 minutes drive) you will get similar views as toy train except that the toy train also traverses the wonderful & fascinating Batasia Loop which you can not really see from the road. But you can certainly get off the vehicle and enter the loop. Most tourists consider riding the heritage toy train an experience by itself, leave aside the views. 
 
Dipanshu Yadav (November 2016) 
Hi Raj, I must say that this is a very helpful website and you are helping a lot of travelers by providing your comments. I have a question though, I am not able to find that jungle safari train from SGUJ to SGUD as mentioned by you. Is that train run everyday? if not, which train I must take to enjoy nature and landscape. Thanks and Regards, 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) November 2016 
Jungle Safari is usually a seasonal train. You can take the regular toy train from NJP to Darjeeling (it does not run everyday though). This train also goes through the same stations as Jungle Safari. You can go all the way to Darjeeling (about 7 hours) or get off at Kurseong and take a road transport, like a private or shared taxi. 
 
Sandhya Sunil (September 2016) 
Hi, We were planning on a trip to Darjeeling from Kolkata in December. Wanted to know can we do say from NJP to Darjeeling we travel by toy train part way & then taxi, or alternatively taxi part way first and then the toy train? If so what would the recommended route be & which one affords the better scenic experience? Thanks 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) September 2016 
What you take first (taxi or toy train) will depend on toy train timings and the time when you reach NJP. One possibility is take a taxi up to Kurseong and then toy train. All toy trains from NJP pass through Kurseong plus there are toy trains that start from Kurseong for Darjeeling. So check your arrival time and toy train timings, and plan accordingly. 
 
Meher Sangle (September 2016) 
Hi Raj, Thank you for the amazing details that you have taken the trouble of writing down for all of us. Just a quick question. My mother and her collugues are travelling to Darjeeling for a conference and have a Return flight from Bagdogra. I have recommended that they take the toy train upto Siliguri instead of a car, halt near NJP /Siliguri for the night and then proceed to the Bagdogra. I understand that the train stops at stations will compensate for not having bathroom on-board ? Correct? Thanks a ton! 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) September 2016 
Hi, unfortunately the toy trains briefly stop at the intermediate stations and such stops can not be used for toilet breaks. In fact most stations along the route do not have toilets. So alternatively she can get off at Kurseong (half way), take a cab and go down to a hotel in Siliguri or Bagdogra. 
 
Azeem (August 2016) 
Hi Raj,  Is it true that 52541 toy train from NJP to DJ doesn't have toilets?? I am planning for Darjeeling trip in September this year with my parents who are aged. I believe it will be a big problem if the train doesn't have toilets. What is the alternative if the doesn't have one? 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) August 2016 
Most Darjeeling toy trains do not have toilets in the coaches. If that's a problem, go for a shorter ride (like the 2-hrs Joy Ride from Darjeeling, alternatively 3-hrs one way ride from Kurseong to Darjeeling or the reverse). 
 
Vanshul Pali (June 2016) 
Hi Raj, thank you for uploading all the relevant stuff regarding the travel to Darjeeling. It's because of this I am able to understand and make an itinerary for my family to make a visit to Darjeeling. I am planning to come down to New Jalpaiguri (NJP) in the month of September. My train (Dibrugarh Rajdhani Exp) reaches NJP at around 10:45 AM. I want to take the RED PANDA train from kurseong to Darjeeling which leaves at 02:00 PM from Kurseong. I have like a 3 hour window, will it be sufficient for me to make it on time? Thanks. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) June 2016 
If your train reaches on time, you can easily reach Kurseong by taxi before Red Panda leaves. It takes about 1 hour 45 minutes to reach Kurseong from NJP. 
 
Manish Mote (May 2016) 
Sir, I along with my 8 family members are schedule to visit Kurseong. And then we will move to Darjeeling. I get to know that Toy train is running from Kurseong to Darjeeling. Also joyride is there in Darjeeling. Joy ride is costlier than toy train ride. So, what are the main differences between these rides, whether the train appearance is different? Or we will get the different experience in joy ride? Main motto of our journey will be surrounding nature. But, if we got some special experience in joyride train, then I can go for its booking. Thank you sir. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) May 2016 
Kurseong to Darjeeling train is a regular commuter train pulled by diesel engine and mostly availed by the locals. It makes several stops at the stations in between. However goes along the same track as the joy ride from Ghum onwards. So you will pass by the same places. The Joy Ride is meant for tourists, has only first class coaches and all services (except the first one in the morning) are hauled by original steam engines. It stops at Batasia for views and also at Ghum station for visit to the DHR museum (entry included in ticket price). 
 
Arundhati Sawant (April 2016) 
Hello Raj, Thank you for your valuable information. Please can you let me know what is the best time of the day to take the train. I know it would be dependent on lots of variable factors like weather, etc but assuming ideal conditions, what would be the best time to take the 2 hr joy ride? We will be there in the first or second week of May 2016. On the railways website I see steam or diesel options. The earliest steam engine option is at 10:40am. There is another steam engine journey in the evening. The one that starts at 8am is the diesel engine. Thank you. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) April 2016 
The earliest train is usually best for the views. If steam engine is a must do for you, then the one at 10:40am should be the choice. 
 
Nitesh Jain (April 2016) 
Hi Raj, I am planning to come to Darjelling in last week of April. My toy train tickets are already booked from NJP to Darjeeling. I would like to know that "Toy Train Joyride - Darjeeling to Ghum & Back " is a worthy trip? As we are already travelling on this route from NJP to DJ. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) April 2016 
Since you are already taking the regular toy train, you need not take the joy ride again as you will also go by the places which the joy ride covers. 
 
Sathya Dev (February 2016) 
Hi Raj, If I take the Darjeeling Mail 12343 from Kolkata to NJP which arrives at New Jalpaiguri by 8:00 am, is it practically possible to catch the Darjeeling Toy Train #52541 that leaves NJP to Darjeeling by 8:30am ? Also do we get enough luggage space in the Toy Train for a comfortable journey that lasts 7.5 hours. If your response is encouraging I prefer to take this option rather than a taxi from NJP to Darjeeling. Really appreciate your time and expert advice. Best regards. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) February 2016 
Usually a luggage van is attached to the toy train between NJP and Darjeeling, so luggage won't be an issue. The time could be short unless Darjeeling Mail reaches on or before time, and all of you have able legs to walk fast or even run. 
 
Nitin L (February 2016) 
Dear Raj, Not seen a better travel website than yours. Simple, Easy to read, very informative. Can't stop from asking the below query. I am traveling with my parents around end of March. After taking the jungle safari from Siliguri, will it be possible to cover Mirik site seeing and then go to Darjeeling. If so, what is the latest time by which one should leave Mirik for Darjeeling. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) February 2016 
During Jungle Safari, get off at Sukna on your return instead of going all the way back to Siliguri Junction. You will pass by Sukna anyway on your way to Mirik. Leave Mirik by 3:30pm if you like to travel in daylight and spend a few minutes at Simana. 
 
Beth Ann Klink (January 2016) 
Greetings Mr. Bhattacharya! I have read almost every word of your website in preparation for a trip to West Bengal and, specifically, Darjeeling district; and I have found it to be incredibly helpful. Thank you for this labor of love. We are being asked to provide scanned and e-mailed copies of our passports to a tour operator (Nature Beyond) we have engaged in order to secure room reservations at Jaldapara Tourist Lodge and toy train tickets from Kurseong to Darjeeling (among other services). Please forgive us, but his is our first trip to India, and we are wondering if this is usual practice as we are somewhat concerned given we have never been asked to provide this information to tour operators in other countries. Many thanks for any guidance you can provide. Sincerely. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) January 2016 
Good day, while booking toy train tickets across the counter, a valid photo Id (photocopy of passport for foreigners) is required. This is however not a requirement for hotel booking. Some government hotels may ask for photo id number (like driving license number) at the time of booking, but not the private hotels. At the time of check in, it is mandatory to show your photo Id though (like passport) at all hotels in India. 
 
For Toy Train booking, the easiest is to book online through irctc.co.in website (Indian Railways). While registering for a user account, it will however ask for an Indian mobile phone number where confirmation and other SMSs would be sent. That is the only problem for foreigners. Tour operators can also do your online train booking through their own irctc registered account. Not sure why they are not doing it for your toy train booking in this case and instead proposing to do it manually across the counter and asking for passport copy. You can get into a dialogue with them on this. 
 
Beth Ann Klink (January 2016) 
Dear Raj: Thank you so very much for your timely reply! The information you provide is not only helpful in regard to my initial question but also explains why I have been unable to set up an irctc account (I have been providing a USA, rather than an Indian, cell phone number), which led to my seeking assistance from a tour operator. I will proceed as you suggest in every regard. Again, many thanks, and we are very excited to experience Darjeeling! Sincerely, Beth Klink 
 
B Mondal (December 2015) 
Hi! I want to know whether I need to carry food while travelling in the Toy Train from NJP to Darjeeling? Its 7.5Hrs journey so food and toilet is essential for such a long time. Thank you 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) December 2015 
Carry food if you need. No food is served on the train. Neither there are any toilets in the Toy Train coaches. 
 
Jürgen Heckmann (December 2015) 
Hello Raj, in March 2016 we would like ride Toy Train to Darjeeling. What is the better railway station for tourists Siliguri or New Jalpaiguri ? New Jalpaiguri is a very big junction and perhaps it's not so easy to find the right train, but the train starts in the morning and we have a lot of time. What station would you prefer ? Many thanks for your help. Best wishes and warm regards from Germany. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) December 2015 
Hi, I personally prefer the station Siliguri Junction to board the toy train for Darjeeling. The main reason being the train comes from NJP and waits here for 35 minutes (from 8.55am to 9:30am). You can avoid wasting time if you board from Siliguri (note the station is Siliguri Junction and not Siliguri Town, they are 3kms apart). This part of the ride (i.e. on the lower plains of Siliguri) is not very interesting either. However if you have reached NJP by train and want to connect to the Toy Train, then NJP would be a convenient option. 
 
Arijit Gangooly (September 2015) 
Hi, Your site is super duper informative. So thought of seeking clarity from you. We have some tickets confirmed in first class in the morning train from Kurseong to Darj, and some unconfirmed. Can the waitlisted board the train? Having a seat is not an issue, as I want to enjoy the experience. Are there any unreserved compartments available, or can he board the 2S? Regards, 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) September 2015 
Hi, wait-listed passengers can not board the train. There is no unreserved compartment, all seats are allocated. 
 
Richard Le Mare (August 2015) 
Hello Raj, Your website is fantastic and so full of very useful information. Thank you. We are visiting your beautiful corner of the world in mid-October, from UK. Of course we want to travel on the toy train. Is it possible to get on it in Siliguri? have heard that there has been a landslide and a section of the line is closed. Is this true? If it is closed, where is the first station that we can get on the train after Siliguri? Many many thanks for your help. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) August 2015 
Hi, NJP-Darjeeling toy train re-started in June but had to be suspended again due to further damages to the track in monsoon. However it's operational between Kurseong and Darjeeling (daily two services). You can either board from Kurseong, or take a 2-hour joy ride from Darjeeling. 
 
Richard Le Mare (August 2015) 
Raj, Thanks a million times for your really helpful response. I think what we will do is get to Darjeeling by bus / taxi from Bagdogra when we arrive, and then leave Darjeeling by train to Kurseong, picking up a taxi / bus in Kurseong to get us to Bagdogra for our flight home, at the end of our holiday. Thanks so much for your help. 
 
Balaji Balasubramani (August 2015) 
Hi Raj, I looked at your site, and I found all the information very helpful. Thanks for providing those. I have one doubt... I am planning to take the Jungle Safari 10am train from Siliguri Jn and get down at Tindharia(12.20pm) or Gayabari(12.43 Pm). Is is possible to get down at Tindharia or Gayabari, if it's possible please suggest which is the best place to get down, since I plan to reach Kurseong from there, but I am not sure whether I can reach Kurseong from Tindharia or Gayabari through any means like Jeep or bus. And from Kurseong, I am planning to catch 3.00pm toy train and reach Darjeeling. Could you please let me know is this possible and if so will I be missing any scenery or important things that I shouldn't be when the train goes back to siliguri. I will be booking the Jungle Safari tickets for full length but if it's possible I will get down and move to Darjeeling via Kurseong. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) August 2015 
Hi, you can not go beyond Gayabari towards Kurseong by road as the road is damaged since 2010. You need to return to Sukna and take a taxi to reach Kurseong via Rohini. 
 
Sumanta Nandi (June 2015) 
Hi Raj, You mentioned that NJP to DJ Toy Train Service has resumed. However I am unable to make a booking on IRCTC as it says 'No direct train found'. Do you have any update on this? Thanks & Regards 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) June 2015 
IRCTC takes time to incorporate into their database. However the NJP-Darjeeling train has been suspended temporarily because of rains and some large boulders falling on the track. 
 
Noaman Rasheed (June 2015) 
Dear Raj, I hav gone through ur website and have found it very informative and helpful. Still I have got few queries for my plan. It would be very kind if u could clarify them to me. 
 
1) instead of taking the 2hr joyride trip from darjeeling to ghum I opt for darjeeling to kurseong regular morning train will it halt at batasia loop and ghum for sigh viewing as in case of joy ride train. 
2) I am planing of having the jungle safari trip as well. Can u help me plan it so that I can have a halt at batasia loop, ghum and den go forward and enjoy the ride. 
 
Kindly suggest. I would be waiting for your kind assistance. Do email me your reply. Regards 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) June 2015 
Hi, regular toy trains don't stop at Batasia, but they stop at Ghum for couple of minutes. Jungle Safari train operates from Siliguri up to Gayabari and doesn't come up to Batasia or Ghum. 
 
Amit Arora (April 2015) 
Hi Raj, I was to travel by the 52547 Joyride at 4:05pm on 12th May, but the steep increase in fare has made me change my mind. Instead, I have booked First Class seats (Rs.140 per person) in the regular train service number 52588 departing Darjeeling at 4pm and reaching Ghum at 4:30pm. For returning from Ghum, I have booked the service 52545 departing Ghum at 5:08pm and reaching Darjeeling at 5:50pm. The downside of taking this option will be that there will be no 10 minute halt at Batasia loop and the engine will be diesel rather than steam. However, the saving will be substantial without much decrease in comfort and enjoyment, as I assume that the First Class coaches in the regular train will be the same as that in the Joyride. What do you think of this change in plan? I have not yet cancelled my Joyride tickets and waiting for your advice. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) April 2015 
Hi Amit, Overall a great move! If everybody starts thinking the same way, I imagine DHR would seriously start thinking of reverting their joyride fare. You can always cover Batasia separately if you are taking tour of Tiger Hill sunrise. It's covered under the standard 3-point tour. Otherwise on your way back from Darjeeling to NJP/Bagdogra, you can ask the taxi to stop at Batasia for 10 minutes. It's on the same route. I guess looking at a steam engine moving and taking its picture is arguably a better experience than riding it. You are right, first class coaches are all the same. However there could be one more downside to your move though... morning trains are usually better for views, chances of sky remaining clear in the morning half is higher than in the afternoon. This is where DHR may look at your move with a subtle smile at the corner of its lips ;) 
 
Arijit Banerjee (April 2015) 
Dear Raj, How are you? I am from Kolkata and would be reaching Darjeeling on 12th of April. We have booked the joy ride vide irctc but unfortunately we have got the 4 O'clock slot. There was no morning slot available at the time of booking. How is this time for the ride? I have read in the blog that you prefer morning ride but will this slot be worthwhile considering the fact that the sun would go down in sometime. Can we expect some visibility or should we consider it bad luck and let go off the ride and do something else. Need your suggestion. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) April 2015 
Hi, Suggest you go ahead with the ride and hope to get good views. In the morning you get bright lights and usually great view of Kanchenjunga snow peaks from Batasia loop.... ideal for photo shoots. The last train (at 4.05pm) will reach Batasia around 4:45pm. There will still be daylights for taking pictures. But in the afternoon, the peaks are not always visible as they get covered with cloud. But you may be lucky. However the flowering gardens of Batasia and the scenes on your journey will be equally enjoyable. 
 
Kalpak Doshi (March 2015) 
Dear Mr. Raj, During the last week I have read your website with great interest and resultant appreciation. The only inference one can draw is that such a website can be created only out of passion. I will also be subscribing to the tourism card once my train booking formalities are completed. 
 
I am planning to visit Darjeeling probably in the first week of May. We are a family of four (3 Adults & 1 Child). Right now I am focused only on my reservations and I will get back to you on subsequent questions later. 
 
My reservation related issues are for the Toy-train. These are as follows: 
 
1. The Railway Timetable shows the following trains: 
Train No. - From – Class – Timings, 
52541 - New Jalpaiguri- FC & II- 9.00 AM, 
52545 - Kurseong - FC & II- 3.00 PM, 
52546 - Ghum - FC - 9.20 AM. 
 
2. On personal visit to the Railways, I have found the following: 
- No Toy-train starts from New Jalpaiguri 
- Train No. 52541 starts only from Kurseong which is at 1.25 PM 
- One more Toy-train i.e. Train No. 52585 from Kurseong at 7.00 AM is there. 
 
Based on the above, I want your help in the following questions: 
 
1. Whether any of these trains start from New Jalpaiguri now? If yes then is the journey from New Jalpaiguri to Kurseong interesting because this train takes 7 hours which is quite long although time is not a constraint for us 
2. We would prefer to travel by a Steam Engine train. Out of the above four which is a Steam Engine train? 
3. Is Train No. 52546 from Ghum the train that offers joy ride. Is the Ist Class ticket for this train above Rs. 1,000/-? How does this train offer greater joy as compared to other 3 trains? 
4. Which train would you recommend we should take? 
5. Would enjoying the views be better in the morning 7 AM train or afternoon 3 PM train? 
 
I would highly appreciate your response and thank you very much for having spared time for reading this long mail. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) March 2015 
Good day, There is no toy train yet from NJP. Although there is a commuter train between Kurseong and Darjeeling which makes two round trips in a day, the best option for tourists is to take a 2-hour round trip joyride from Darjeeling. 4 round trips are offered, two in the first half and two in the afternoon. The first one (at 8am) is a diesel engine hauled toy train while the others are steam engine pulled. A morning train is usually better for views. 
 
Bhaswati Bose (February 2015) 
I booked online in January for 1st April for Rs.400/-. Now the fare has shot up to Rs.1,090/-. Will we have to pay the difference? This is very upsetting. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) February 2015 
Yes, you need to pay the difference when you board the train. This is an unexpected fare hike by DHR & Indian railways. There is a lot of furor going over it. They had already revised it from initially announced fare of Rs. 1,165 to 1,090. However the diesel engine pulled toy train joyride fare is 625/- (it starts at 8am). You may also consider another option ... take the regular commuter toy train that starts from Darjeeling at 10:15am, buy ticket up to Ghum (Rs. 140/- in first class, Rs. 30 in second class). It's a diesel engine hauled train and goes up to Kurseong. You will get off at Ghum and get back by a road transport like a jeep. Similar route and experience as the joyride. If you get the tickets, you can cancel the earlier ones. You can buy this online as well. But it's entirely up to you what you may like to do under the circumstances. 
 
Bhaswati Bose (October 2014) 
Hi Raj, This is my second mail query to you. Thanks for replying to my first query about hotel booking for our group of 20 senior citizens in Darjeeling and Gangtok. Your advise was of great help. We will be in Darjeeling in 1st week April 2015. We all want to take the Toy Train ride from Darjeeling to Ghum. We want to take the afternoon ride. My query is : 
1. How early should we book the tickets (for 20 people)? 
2. Should we book online or ask our tour operator to book? 
3. What will be the cost per ticket? will it change in April 2015? 
Thanks in advance 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) October 2014 
Hi, while all your questions should be directed to Indian Railway Inquiry, I'll try to answer some of them. Book online and well in advance. April is in high season. You can book up to 60 days in advance. Since you are a large group, book as soon as your date gets into reservation period. Current fare is Rs. 400/- per person. Will fare change in future?? Only a railway authority can answer that question, but I doubt even if they would respond to such query. Having said that, your time of visit is in the beginning of next financial year and that's the time when railway budgets are revised. So from that perspective there is a possibility of fare change. However having steeply revised it for Darjeeling toy train this year, it's unlikely that there will be any significant changes next year. Good luck! 
 
Abhishek Gupta (October 2014) 
Hi Raj, Me and my wife are coming Darjeeling on 9th of Nov'14, and will stay there till 14th Nov'14. We want to take a ride of toy train and planning to take it while we will be coming back. I checked the fare for Darjeeling-Ghum-Darjeeling (400/- Rs), and Darjeeling-Kurseong (210/-Rs) for first class ticket. Can you please tell me the possible reason of higher fare for joy ride?? Will I miss something if I book tickets for Darjeeling-Kerseong??? 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) October 2014 
Hi, Darjeeling Kurseong toy train is a regular commuters' train and diesel engine hauled, while the joy ride is original steam engine hauled train mainly targeted for tourists who want to experience the old heritage and ride. The joy ride also includes entry fee to Darjeeling Himalayan Railway Museum at Ghum where the train stops for sometime. So if you take Darjeeling Kurseong train, while you can enjoy the scenery including Batasia loop, you will miss the sights and sound of steams blowing out of the original engines designed by the British and also a visit to the DHR Museum. 
 
Sayantan Chatterjee (October 2014) 
I have a query. Joyride covers only from Darjeeling to Ghum, whether other two trains (DJ KGN NG TRAIN) goes (one way though) going upto KURSEONG. So which will be better, Joyride (covering up to Ghum) or the later one which covers up to KURSEONG? What about the scenic beauty between KURSEONG to GHUM? I mean, will I miss something worth seeing partly if I choose Joyride instead of the later? Please Suggest. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) October 2014 
A great viewing area is Batasia Loop where you get sweeping views of Kanchenjunga range and Darjeeling town. This and the highest station Ghum are anyway covered in the round trip joy ride. Beyond Ghum, there are only two stations ... Sonada and Tung. While Sonada is quite crowded, but the Tung is a sleepy small village. Every time I pass by Tung and look at the tiny station shed, I imagine siting there some day... but never made it so far. 
 
Just before Tung you can see the lovely landscape of Margaret Hope Tea Estate and after Tung the Singell tea estate. You pass by forests of maple and chestnuts and then see the lovely views of Kurseong hills. However one way to Kurseong by toy train takes about 3 hours. So considering time involved, 2-hour round trip joy ride from Darjeeling satisfies most, but is it the same as a journey all the way to Kurseong? Well no, there is more to explore further down towards Kurseong. 
 
Aishwarya (August 2014) 
Thank you for a wonderful and informative site. My husband and I will be travelling to Darjeeling in the 1st week of September 2014. The Following are some of the queries which I could not find answers to. We would be grateful for your views regarding these issues. 
 
1. Please let us know the difference between cabin and coupe in the toy train from Kurseong to Darjeeling? The IRCTC site is asking for option in berth as Lower/ Upper/ Cabin/ Coupe in FC. 
 
2. What is the difference between 2S and FC? The cost of FC is significantly higher. Are there any additional features/services in keeping with the cost? 
 
Thank You so much for making it easy for us to plan. Regards 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) August 2014 
Hi, Berth, Cabin/Coupe options are not applicable for DHR toy trains. They are meant for regular first class coaches in regular express/mail trains. They should have defined the Class type of first class coach as CC (Chair Car) instead of First Class which could have avoided the confusion. Darjeeling toy trains do not have sleeping berths, cabins or coupes. So ignore the berth/cabin option and keep it at "No Preference". The First Class coaches have individual push back seats like in Shatabdi and lot more space. While 2S (stands for Second Seating) is a second class coach with lot more seats. Several persons sit together on a wider cushioned seat. 
 
Dhruv (August 2014) 
Is there any personal cabin for couples in the toy trains. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) August 2014 
Nope! You can charter the whole train though :) 
 
Sandip Samaddar (November 2013) 
Hello Raj, I am planning to visit darjeeling on 8th jan 2014. I will be going from NJP station availing any shared jeep/cars. I have booked 2 toy train tickets (Darjeeling-Kurseong) from irctc website in 2nd class. Just want to ask that if the journey in 2nd class would be comfortable or not in the sense will we be getting the seats or the local commuters would grab them first. Should I cancel them and make arrangements in 1st class. If you can highlight the difference between both the classes. From Kurseong station how much time it takes to reach NJP station and what would be the price like so that I get an estimate and not get cheated there. Thanks. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) November 2013 
Hi, First class coaches in toy trains have lesser seats (about 15) compared to Second class coaches (about 30 seats), and for obvious reasons they are more comfortable. But 2nd class coaches are also not bad and you will get seats. Kurseong to NJP takes about 1.5 hours by car/jeep. Shared jeep fare is about Rs 75-100/- per person, reserved small taxi about Rs. 1200/- 
 
Dipayan Das (November 2013) 
Hi Mr Raj, I'll be travelling in the toy train when returning from Darjeeling upto Kurseong. I'll be travelling with my parents nd will have 1 trolley bag and 1 medium size bag. I heard that there is not enough space to keep luggage. So should I book 1 extra ticket to keep my luggage? 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) November 2013 
Hi, Darjeeling Kurseong toy train is a commuters train and you should not carry big luggage. But between few of you, you can have one or two bags or small suit cases ... in India how big is big in such situations is never defined. So sometimes you can get away even with large suitcases. Considering minimum inconvenience to fellow passengers, use your own discretion. 
 
Gerry Rosenberg (October 2013) 
I will be visiting Darjeeling with my family in early January. The Toy Train sounds amazing. Our travel agent only wants us to take the Joy Ride. From what I've read, some of the most amazing parts of the trip occur way before that. So, my questions are: 
 
1. Is the train running the entire route (8 hours or so)? 
2. Would you recommend taking it? 
 
Thank you 
 
P.S. we are Americans living in Bangalore for 1 year. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) October 2013 
Hi, The toy train is still not operational for the entire route. A part of the track is lying damaged just before Kurseong and there is no service up to this point. So you have couple of options ... either take the ride from Kurseong up to Darjeeling (takes about 3 hours ... the train leaves Kurseong at 3pm), or take the 2-hour round trip joy ride from Darjeeling. Unfortunately most of the amazing feats of track engineering (except one) are before Kurseong and you can't experience those until the the track is repaired ... I see slim chances of  that happening before Jan 2014. It's lying in the present state for the last 3 years.... it's another amazing story ... 
 
However both Kurseong - Darjeeling train or the joy ride will pass through Batasia Loop, a double spiral loop where the train negotiates an altitude of about 1000 ft as it completes the loop ... probably the most amazing part in the entire trip .... added to it is the wonderful view of Kanchenjunga snow peaks from Batasia. I would recommend the Joy Ride out of the two because the train has first class coaches, while the other one is a commuters train and runs only with second class coaches. 
 
Priyal Dmello (October 2013) 
Hi Raj Sir, Thanks a lot for your efforts for helping tourists. I have some queries. How many joyrides of toytrain run in Darjeeling? If there are 4, then can I book evening joyride? Which is from 16.00 to 18.00 hrs. Will there be sufficient daylight to enjoy this joyride and visit DHR museum? I am planing to visit Darjeeling on 07 Nov. 13. I am reaching NJP station by 06.00 am by Abadh Assam Exp. Is it ok to book afternoon joyride.(01.20pm). What is maximum time required to reach Darjeeling from NJP station by private car? 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) October 2013 
Hi, Usually four toy train joyride trips run everyday during high season. Whether it'll be reduced in November is something you can find out from the Indian Railway site (irctc.co.in) as you book your ticket. In November it gets dark around 5:30pm. If you reach NJP at 6am, you can take the afternoon ride. It takes about 3.5 hours to reach Darjeeling from NJP provided there are no delays on the way. 
 
Ranjan Kumar Dey (July 2013) 
Dear Raj, I have already booked for joyride on 16th Aug 2013. We are very much excited for the ride ( 7 member age 20 - 43yrs including 2 two-year old children). But is there any difficulties for the ride in monsoon season? I came to know from one of my friends, DHR provides food during the ride and it is included in fare. Is it right? Please help me. Regards 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) July 2013 
Hi Ranjan, There is no food in DHR (other than the Safari ride which takes place from NJP). The joyrides takes place in the monsoon season as well. You will often find a person standing in front of the engine sprinkling sand on the tracks. Due to the gradient the train often skids. The sand ensures that it moves on. 
 
Patrick Brown (May 2013) 
What is the current status of this train. I will be in the area in October 2013. Is it likely that the train will be fully operational or only partly in service and if so, what portion will be operational. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) May 2013 
Your question can be best answered by Darjeeling Himalayan Railway (DHR). The track is lying damaged for the past 3 years. So hoping that it'll be repaired in the next 3 months looks rather unlikely. While funding has been the main issue, the terrain of the damaged track also makes it difficult to repair. The landslide has almost completely washed away the landmass and the track here virtually hangs in a deep gorge. Currently the section between Kurseong and Darjeeling is operational and likely to remain so through this year. 
 
Nitin K Aviral (May 2013) 
Your website is very informative. One can plan his/her holiday with ease. Somebody misled me about the joyride train information but I came to know about its exact scenario from your site and booked my ticket for 14/06/2013. Thank you for your great work.   
 
Marishaa Singh (May 2013) 
I'll be visiting Darjeeling June 7th to 10th 2013. While we have booked tickets for the joy ride to Ghum we are unable to find any information on the railtourism or the irctc sites for the Safari rides or the timings. Can you help please? Will they run the train during the weekend? Or we just keep checking? Thanks 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) May 2013 
You need to keep checking the railtourism site time to time. There is no other way to know. Usually they come out with the packages by now. 
 
Harleen Kaur (March 2013) 
Hi, I am visiting Darjeeling and Gangtok from 24th March 2013 to 31st March (i.e. two days from now). I want to book tickets of toy train online but not available till 31st of March. Is there a general class for which I can buy the ticket on the spot. I don't want to miss this opportunity to travel in toy train. Please guide me what to do. Also, which place should I visit first Darjeeling or Gangtok. And is Nathula pass open at this time of year? Warm Regards, 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) March 2013 
Hi, There is no general class in the toy train that runs from Darjeeling for Ghum joy ride. It's all first class seats. Once you reach Darjeeling, you can ask a tour operator to see if they can help. Otherwise, you can take the regular toy train for Kurseong (starts around 10am). This is not a joyride, but all the same. Get off at Ghoom and return by shared jeep or taxi. You will have a similar experience. Not many know about this option, so you should get tickets. But this is a second class train... doesn't matter. It's nice. It doesn't matter which place you visit first, Darjeeling or Gangtok. 
 
Judith Williams (February 2013) 
Regarding the mountain railway, I note your comment to travellers that there is no space for large luggage on the train, we are on a round the world trip and a ride on the railway is an important part of the journey for my husband who is a railway enthusiast, is there anywhere to store luggage securely at NJP? 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) February 2013 
Hi, Yes, there is a Cloak Room at NJP station where you can securely keep your luggage. Passenger and commercial luggage are kept in separate rooms. There is a nominal charge (Rs. 10 per bag) per day for passenger luggage. You must have valid inward or onward Indian railway ticket to avail this facility. Note that due to security reasons, all your bags in the cloak room must be individually locked. The station authority will not accept any luggage which is unlocked even if it is a backpack. For soft bags or backpacks, wrap it around with a chain that should pass through the flaps and then lock it. The service is often quite slow. So on your way back, do not come just 10 minutes before the train departs and expect to get your bags back in time. Regards, 
 
Tom Hadley (February 2013) 
Hi I like your site. It is very well set out and informative. I wonder could you assist with some up to date information about the toy train, do you know if it is running at the moment or if it only runs between certain places. I realise that you are not a travel agent. Thanks in anticipation of your assistance 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) February 2013 
Hi, There is no toy train from NJP all the way to Darjeeling yet. A section of the track just before Kurseong is still lying damaged since June 2010 due to landslides. They say there is no fund to repair ... amazing but true. You have two options... 
 
1) Come up to Kurseong by road (not the Hill Cart Road that runs side by side the toy train track. That road too is damaged at the same point. There is another alternative road used these days up to Kurseong). From there take the toy train up to Darjeeling. However you need to time it correctly with the departure time of the toy train, and also keep in mind that you can't carry heavy luggage in a toy train. 
 
2) Take the two hour toy train joy ride from Darjeeling up to Ghoom and back. There are 4 such rides everyday during high season. Most prefer this option. But you should book your tickets well in advance.  
 
P.S: The sections above provide all the details of Toy Train services, schedules and how to book the tickets. 
 
Tanusree Hazra (February 2013) 
There are only 4 tickets available in the toy train and we have 7 members. So is there any other option to take the ride? 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) February 2013 
From Darjeeling, take the toy train to Kurseong, get off at Ghoom and come back by car/shared jeep. It leaves Darjeeling in the morning (around 10am). Similar experience. 
 
Rashmi Sahu (January 2013) 
Sir, thought of taking the toy train from Darjeeling to Kurseong on May 2. Wanted to know if we could take our luggage along as we are planning for a stay in maikabari tea estate, and then take our train back from Silliguri. Thanks. (we can book one more ticket.for the luggage to keep ) 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) January 2013 
Hello, Luggage space in the passenger coaches of the toy train is very limited. If the train has a luggage van (which is usually a part of the second class coach), then carrying luggage won't be a problem. You will need to check the coach composition with Darjeeling Himalayan Railway. If there is no luggage van (which is quite likely for Darjeeling to Kurseong section), then don't plan to carry heavy luggage. Note that May is high tourist season and the trains are likely to be full. 
 
Marcus (October 2012) 
Hello Raj, we (2 Persons) are travelling with an Indrail pass trough India and we want to visit Darjeeling at Christmas 2012. Is it necessary to reserve the train rides for the 24th from New Jalpaiguri to Darjeeling and for the 25th the train rides to Ghoom and Kurseong in advance? Do you have the timetables for the trains between this towns for the 25th of December? Greetings to India 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) October 2012 
Hi Marcus, There is no toy train from New Jalpaiguri (NJP) up to Darjeeling these days.. A section of the track between NJP to Kurseong is damaged and has remained this way for the last couple of years. So I doubt it would be repaired before Christmas. Yes, you should reserve all joy rides in advance as there would be lots of tourists during that time.  
 
Linda Anderson (October 2012) 
Hi Raj, Do you think there will be any problem getting a steam train journey from Kuresong to Darjeeling if we go to the station at Kurseong on the day of travel? Also do you just turn up on the day to take the joy ride from Darjeeling to Ghoom and back or should we try to book in advance? If we do, can you give me the name and e-mail details of a Darjeeling based travel agent who may be able to help. Thank you. 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) 
Hi Linda, Usually there is no problem turning up and buying the tickets at the station. You can plan to do that for Kurseong to Darjeeling. End Nov is a low season, so I don't expect the coaches to get full, but you never know. Darjeeling to Ghoom joy ride is a far more popular trip with the tourists, and you can buy the tickets at Darjeeling station. Although it's unlikely to go full around that time, try to book this one in advance. I have mentioned some Darjeeling based Tour & Travel Agents here: Tours & Trek Operators. You can try contacting some of them, particularly 'AmigosTours & Treks' 
 
Pande (September 2012) 
Could you please tell me if the "toy" train is in operation for travel from NJP to Darjeeling during an early October visit to the area... I cannot find it available for booking through IRCTC. Thank you 
 
Raj (darjeeling-tourism.com) 
A section of the toy train track between NJP and Kurseong was damaged in 2010 due to landslide. It has remained un-repaired until now apparently due to lack of funds. It's unlikely that it would be operational soon. However, if you want to take a joy ride, take the 2-hour toy train round trip ride from Darjeeling to Ghoom and back (operates twice daily). Try to book the ticket in advance. If you find it difficult to get the booking option online through IRCTC site, go to an online railway booking counter and inquire.