Imagine travelling in a train with coaches that has large glass window panes and glass roofs which will allow you to look at the breathtaking views of mountains, gorges, and valleys from your seat.
Indian Railway has introduced Vistadome coaches to give its passengers a new and unique way to travel for a lifetime experience. These coaches offer passengers a panoramic view of pristine nature, giving them an immersive travel experience.
Read on to learn more about Vistadome coaches such as their features, safety and the routes at which Indian Railways operate trains with these coaches.
What Is a Vistadome Coach?
Vistadome is an ultra-modern coach made by the Integral Coach Factory of Indian Railways. These coaches have features that include large glass windows, glass roofs, rotating seats, and an observation lounge, so passengers can witness breath-taking glimpses of mountains, greenery, and beaches. In addition, Vistadome coaches have a seating capacity of 44 and they are equipped with Wi-Fi, GPS, and infotainment systems giving passengers the most luxurious experience of travel on the train.
Features and Comfort
Made in India Vistadome coaches are characterized by see through the glass rooftop and luxurious interiors. These coaches are also called tourist coaches. Following are the unique features of a Vistadome coach that makes it different from the conventional train coach of Indian Railways.
- Large Glass Windows: Inspired by European style trains Vistadome coaches have large glass windows. The glasses of the observation lounge are extra-large, giving passengers a wide-angle view of the surrounding.
- Glass Roof Top: Vistadome coaches offer a see-through glass roof-top feature which is also its USP. Imagine the excitement of watching beautiful clouds passing by the mountains and valleys or mesmerising view of the stars and moon on a night sky during a train journey.
- Rotating Seats: Vistadome coaches have state of the art sitting arrangements. The seats can rotate 180 degrees so passengers can always get a close-up view of the outside through the train’s window.
- Pushback Chairs: The chairs in Vistadome coaches are push back to give passengers the utmost comfort on the train.
- Wi-Fi: You can enjoy high-speed internet in Vistadome coaches. For seamless user experience, these coaches have been provided with a Wi-Fi-based passenger information system.
- LED Displays: Passengers can enjoy content on-demand in high-definition quality on integrated LED displays in the coach.
- Mobile Charging Sockets: Each passenger gets a separate mobile charging socket at his/her seat in the Vistadome coach.
- Automatic Sliding Doors: Coaches have automatic sliding doors that easily opens up and closes for the comfort of the passengers.
- Bio-toilets: Vistadome coaches are equipped with Bio-toilets that saves a lot of water and help in keeping the stations clean.
- Multi-tiered Steel Luggage Shelves: You get enough space for keeping luggage in the coach. Luggage shelves are made up of steel and can withstand the heavyweight of luggages easily.
- Snack Tables: These coaches are provided with a foldable snack table for each passenger similar to that seen on commercial airlines.
- Tourist-Friendly Lounge: A lounge-like space with wide glass windows is provided at the end of each Vistadome coach.
In addition, Vistadome coaches are airconditioned, equipped with anti-glare lights, have a mini-pantry car with a microwave oven, coffeemaker, and refrigerator to provide ultimate comfort to passengers.
Safety and Security
Vistadome coaches are designed and manufactured with world-class safety features.
- Shatterproof Glass: The glass windows and roof-tops of Vistadome coaches are manufactured with laminated glass to prevent shattering. Also, Zonal Railways take necessary precautions to ensure the safe operation of the trains with Vistadome coaches.
- CCTV Surveillance: Each Vistadome coach is equipped with a CCTV camera for the safety of goods and passengers on board.
- Braille Signage: Braille signs are placed at convenient places in all the Vistadome coaches. Passengers who are blind or have impaired vision can benefit from Braille Signage.
- Wider Entrance Doors: Coaches have wider entrance and exit doors for persons with disabilities or those on wheelchairs.
- PAPIS: These coaches are equipped with a GPS based Public Address cum Passenger Information System for the convenience and safety of train passengers.
- Automatic Fire Detection, Alarm, and Control System: All Vistadome coaches are equipped with a fire detection and alarm system. Fire extinguishers are provided in every coach to curb the accidental fire on trains.
Trains Routes Where Indian Railway Vistadome Coaches Are in Service
So far, some of the train routes, Indian Railways operate Vistadome coaches are listed below:
- Dadar and Madgaon
- Darjeeling Himalayan Railway
- Araku Valley
- Kashmir Valley
- Kalka Shimla Railway
- Matheran Hill Railway
- Kangra Valley Railway
- Nilgiri Mountain Railway
Most of the trains on the above-mentioned routes are provided with a single Vistadome coach whereas trains on Kalka Shimla Railway and Nilgiri Mountain Railway have been provided with two coaches. Darjeeling Himalayan Railway has the maximum number of Vistadome coaches (total 4 coaches).
Vistadome Trains List
Yesvantpur – Mangaluru Junction: Vistadome Trains
Passengers can now enjoy the magnificent view of the Western Ghats in Vistadome trains. The trains listed under this initiative include Yashvantpur Weekly Express Special (Train No. 06540/06539), Yashvantpur-Karwar Tri-weekly, special (Train No. 06211/06212), and Yashwantpur Mangaluru Junction Gomateshwara Tri-weekly Express Special (Train No. 06575/06576).
Pune-Mumbai Deccan Express: Vistadome Trains
Train No. 01007/01008, Deccan Express Special train on Pune-Mumbai route has Vistadome coaches. Passengers can enjoy the scenic beauty of Matheran hill (Near Neral), Songir hill (near Palasdhari), Ulhas River (near Jambrung), Ulhas Valley, and areas of Khandala, and, Lonavala on this route. There are beautiful waterfalls, and tunnels on the South East Ghat section which will leave you amazed while travelling on this train.
Dadar Madgaon Janshatabdi Express: Vistadome Trains
Get a ride on Train No. 12051/12052, Dadar Madgaon Janshatabdi Express to enjoy the scenic beauty of Konkan Railways. Vistadome coaches have been attached to these two trains which are highly popular among travellers in this route.
Related Reading: Konkan Railways: A Magical Journey
Visakhapatnam-Kirandul Passenger Vistadome Trains
Vistadome coach has been attached to Train No. 58501, Visakhapatnam-Kirandul Special train for the convenience of tourists. Also, Indian Railways has advanced the timing of this train to increase the occupancy rate during the return of the train.
Him Darshan Express Vistadome Trains
Train No. 52460, the New Him Darshan Express train between Kalka-Shimla is one of the most scenic routes in India. This is the first Vistadome train of Indian Railways that will run regularly on the UNESCO Heritage Kalka-Shimla route. You can capture lush green mountains with a mystic scenic view on this route in a Vistadome train.
Related Reading: Himdarshan Express: The First Vista Dome Train in Shimla-Kalka Route
In addition to this, the Indian Railway is planning to launch 49 more Vistadome trains on various routes. Currently, there are 15 narrow gauge coaches out of 41 Vistadome coaches in service. These coaches are seen as a boon to tourism through trains.
How to Book a Ticket in the Vistadome Coach?
You must first decide on the route you want to travel to book tickets in a Vistadome train. Once you have made the decision, follow the steps below to book the ticket:
- Go to the IRCTC website.
- Sign up if you don’t have an IRCTC username or log in to the website if you already did.
- Fill the form by entering the station, train number, train name, Date of Journey, and Category.
- Select AC Chair Car or Executive Chair Car for the Vistadome Coach booking.
- Next, you will see the fare details.
- Click on the “Book Now” button for booking your Vistadome train ticket.
Once the payment has been done, and the booking has been made successfully, you will get a confirmation SMS and Email from IRCTC. Remember, the fare of Vistadome tourist couches is in line with the executive class chair car of the Shatabdi Express trains.
What Is Special About Vistadome Coaches?
In Vistadome coaches, technology, comfort, and hospitality are taken care of pretty well. The glass rooftop, large windows, rotatable seats, and ultra-luxurious features are the specialty of these coaches. You can enjoy a glimpse of nature while passing by scenic routes of Indian Railways. With ample leg space, the 180-degree view of the surrounding is something that will give you an unforgettable experience of the travel which you might wish to pen down.
How Does Vistadome Coach Help Enhance Travel Experience?
Travelling experience in Vistadome coach is mesmerising. The Close-up view of tunnels, valleys, and waterfalls will make you lean forward from your seat while gazing at them from the window. If you are travelling on a hilly route, you may see clouds moving through the roof-top of the coach of your train. You can try 180-degree rotation of the seat to always face towards the window, no matter the train moves in which direction. All this with delicious snacks and food help enhance the travel experience in a Vistadome coach.
People describe travelling in Vistadome trains as a new way of tourism. Initially, it was launched as an experiment which soon caught the attention of passengers and now it is the much-appreciated services offered by IRCTC.
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