Newmai News Network
Shillong: The Ministry of Railways, in a collaborative initiative with IRCTC Ltd is about to operate a “North East Discovery” tour to promote the relatively untraversed North Eastern states of India.
The specially curated tour on Bharat Gaurav Deluxe AC Tourist train will commence its journey from Delhi Safdarjung Railway Station on November 16, 2023. The tour will cover Guwahati, Sivasagar, Jorhat and Kaziranga in Assam, Unakoti, Agartala and Udaipur in Tripura, Dimapur and Kohima (by bus) in Nagaland and Shillong and Cherrapunji (by bus) in Meghalaya over the 15-day tour.
The Bharat Gaurav Deluxe AC Tourist Train has a host of modern features including two dining cars or restaurants, a contemporary kitchen (flameless), shower cubicles in AC I and AC II coaches, sensor-based washroom functions, a foot massager and mini library. The fully air-conditioned train provides three types of accommodation viz. AC I, AC II and AC III. The train also has enhanced security features like CCTV cameras, electronic safes and dedicated security guards appointed for each coach.
Spanning over 14 nights and 15 days, the first stop of this train is Guwahati where tourists will visit Kamakhya Temple, followed by Umananda Temple and a sunset cruise on the Brahmaputra river. This train will further depart on an overnight journey to Naharlagun Railway Station which is 30 km from the next destination Itanagar, the capital of Arunachal Pradesh. The next city to follow is Sivasagar – the old capital of the Ahom Kingdom in the eastern part of Assam. The famous Shiva temple Sivadol is a part of the itinerary besides other heritage sites like Talatal Ghar and Rang Ghar (Colosseum of the East).
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Further the tea gardens at Jorhat and an overnight stay at Kaziranga along with an early morning jungle safari at Kaziranga National Park will be experienced by the tourists. Later, the train departs for the state of Tripura where the guests cover the sightseeing of the famous heritage site of Unakoti in the densely covered Jampui Hills. Later they proceed to the capital city of Agartala, the tour of which includes the famous Ujjayanta Palace, the Neermahal and the Tripura Sundari Mandir at Udaipur.
Post Tripura, the train departs for Dimapur to cover the state of Nagaland. The scenic train journey between Badarpur station to Lumding can be witnessed by the guests in the early hours of the morning from their seats.
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From Dimapur station, tourists shall be taken to Kohima by buses to visit the local sites including a tour of the Khonoma village to experience the Naga way of life. The next halt for the tourist train will be Guwahati from where the sightseers will be taken to Shillong, the capital city of Meghalaya, by road with a pit stop at the majestic Umium Lake en route.
The next day starts with an excursion to Cherrapunji nestled in the East Khasi Hills. Shillong Peak, Elephant Falls, Nawkhalikai Falls and Mawsmai caves are a part of the day’s sightseeing. From Cherrapunji the tourists travel back to Guwahati Station to board the train for the return train journey back to Delhi. Around 5800 km will be covered in the course of the entire train tour.
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It is pertinent to mention that the Bharat Gaurav Tourist Train launch is in line with the Government of India initiative “Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat” and “Dekho Apna Desh” to encourage domestic tourism. The IRCTC tourist train will be a 15-day all-inclusive tour package with train journey in respective class, night stay at AC hotels, all meals (vegetarian only), all transfer and sightseeing in buses, travel insurance, services of tour escort etc. All necessary health precautionary measures will be taken care of and IRCTC will make efforts to provide a safe and memorable experience to the guests.
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