An Enigmatic Journey Along The Konkan Trail
Konkan region spanning across three states; beginning from Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka and stretching up to Kerala is an enthralling experience for those who have undertaken it. The journey across the scenic landscape of lush green terrain, sea shores running parallel, tunnels and bridges across rivers and streams, Karavalli coastline and the Western Ghats in the backdrop through which the train meanders like a serpent is heavenly.
Commenced initially on January 25th, 1998; the Konkan Kanya Express runs between Mumbai CST in Maharashtra and Madgaon in Goa taking approximately 13 hours to cover the breathtaking route. But apart from the Konkan Kanya Express, there are other trains which ply across the states of Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka and ends in Kerala, thus connecting the west with the south. The Konkan Railway route spans 738 kilometers with its end points at Roha in Panvel of Maharashtra and Thokur railway station before Mangalore in Karnataka.
The journey (involving a non electric diesel operated locomotive) assures the tourist of never wasting a minute inside the train but peering out at the expanse of beauty and panorama at every step, is the brainchild of E. Sreedharan under whose guidance the Konkan Railway was set up in 1990. The journey from Mumbai to Goa is magnificent with so much for the eyes to witness and so much to capture within the lens for nature enthusiasts.
The spectacular part of the entire journey is that the trains plying on this route follow a monsoon table as the entire stretch on which the railway track runs is swampy and marshland hence prone to landslides. The bridge across Sharavati river connecting two mountains, Karbude Tunnel and remaining 90 tunnels will transport the passengers to a different world. So much so, several films have been shot on the Konkan railway route and in the Konkan Kanya Express itself.
Although travelling during monsoon can be arduous, yet the magnanimity of nature’s green landscape unravels the most during this season. The real big catch in this journey is to capture nature at its best as it unfolds itself at every step beckoning to the passengers to indulge and admire its beauty. The route once consider impenetrable by the British and the idea shelved is worth taking a shot. People who don’t have time to admire the entire stretch can board the Konkan Kanya Express from Mumbai CST and detrain at Goa’s Madgaon which covers 18 stations and courses like a mythical creature across the dream like wonderful stretch spread across coastlines, hillocks, marshes, forests and rivers to end in a memorable experience etched in the heart forever.