Pilgrim tourist packages and the special trains launched by IRCTC are one of the attractions of locals and tourists. In order to expand the tourism base, the IRCTC and its tourist wing introduce various trains and packages for tourists who are religiously inclined and has a keen desire to explore the historical past of India. There are special trains like Buddhist special train and major luxurious trains like the “Palace of Wheels” and the “Maharaja Express” specially launched for foreign tourists. These trains are embedded with all the world-class luxuries anyone can think of. Now, it’s the time when IRCTC will take you to a divine tour to the Ramayana circuit.
What Is Ramayana?
Ramayana is a holy epic and one of the great epic poems which narrates the story of a divine price Lord Ram, Devi Sita, Lakshman, Bharat, and his affluent kingdom. It is one of the crucial parts of Indian literature which teaches the value of life with honesty and integrity. Lord Ram, in the epic, was the personification of probity and righteousness, whereas Devi Sita was a personality with trustworthiness and truthfulness. The story of Ramayana commences on a happy note, reflecting the love and dedication among siblings and the respect, the siblings had for their parents. The story moves to an ugly plot where Lord Ram and Devi Sita were compelled to leave Ayodhaya because of a discreet conspiracy. The epic preaches the value of modesty, respect and morality when Lord Ram leaves his native place with his wife and brother Lakshman, on the order of his mother. The characters left and went to an exile of 14 years in the woods, leaving behind the richness and prosperity of Ayodhaya.
How can any story be deprived of an evil character?
The epic further introduced an evil character called “Ravana” who had an intention to kidnap Devi Sita and offer her to be the queen of Lanka. Since Devi was already married to Lord Rama, she refused the offer. As a result, she was kept as a captive in the Ashok Vatika. Lord Ram with the help of his Devotee, Hanuman saved Sita from the evil hands of Ravana, and returned to his native Ayodhaya after 14 years. The people of Ayodhaya lighted Diyas and welcomed them with great pomp, celebrations and show. The trend of Deepavali has its root from the Ramayana, as this was the holy day when the power of goodness and morality had a victory over the evil and sinful power.
What is Ramayana Circuit?
The Ramayana circuit refers to the places where Lord Ram and Sita with his brother Lakshman stayed during their exile. They moved from one location to another in the woods. The circuit is the direction from where they started their exile journey, the number of places where they stood and completed their exile. The places also cover international locations like SriLanka and Cambodia. The Indian Railways will take the tourists on a holy journey to all such locations to revive the glory of the historical epic.
Indian Railways and its Tribute to Ramayana
Every year the residents of India pay a tribute the story of Ramayana and its characters which taught us the ethical values on how to lead a life of respect and dignity. The key to a peaceful and good life is by eradicating the evil thoughts and power. This year, Indian Railways, have introduced a special train and tour package which will rotate the tourists on the Ramayana circuit. This train with its cost-effective tourist package will be a fun ride to the places from where the journey of Ramayana begins and cover the exile locations with international locations like SriLanka Cambodia, Negombo and Nuwara Ellya. From Ayodhaya to Colombo, this package will encompass all the locations where Lord Ram and Devi Sita had visited and stayed during their exile.
The Ramayana Express:
The tourism wing of Indian Railways is dedicated to the formation, designing and implementation of various pilgrim tourist packages which are budget-friendly. This time, it’s the holy route of Ramayana which Indian Railways have covered under its list of tourism. It’s time to pack your luggage with DLSR cameras on a zoom mode and to be ready to board and explore the historical epic and its beauty scattered all over India and SriLanka. The train has a seating of 800 passengers. IRCTC said, “The all-inclusive tour package will cover all meals, accommodation and wash and change facilities in dharmashalas, all transfers, sight-seeing arrangements and dedicated tour manager of IRCTC who will be travelling with the tourists during the entire tour”. The Ramayana lovers and the travel enthusiasts can travel through these routes from November 14th. The train will cover all the destinations associated with the life of Lord Rama.
From Where will the Ramayana Express Depart?
The train will depart from 2 locations. One from the Delhi Safdarjung Railway station and the other from Madurai station. The train departing from Delhi will have boarding points at Delhi Safdarjung, Ghaziabad, Moradabad, Bareilly, Lucknow and will have the first halt at Ayodhya followed by Hanuman Garhi Ramkot and Kanak Bhawan temple. The tour will again cover major destinations of the circuit like Nandigram, Sitamarhi, Janakpur, Varanasi, Prayag, Shringverpur, Chitrakoot, Nasik, Hampi and Rameshwaram.
The other train departing from Madurai will cover destinations like Hampi, Nasik, Chitrakut Dham, Darbhanga, Sitamarhi, Janakpuri (Nepal), Ayodhya, Nandigram, Allahabad, Shringaverpur, Rameswaram, Devipatinam and Thirupullani and will have boarding points at Madurai, Dindigul, Karur, Erode, Salem, Jolarpettai, Katpadi, Chennai Central, and Renigunta.
Retracing the Epic Journey of Lord Rama: Indian Railways to introduce a special tourist train ‘Shri Ramayana Express’ which will cover all the places from Ayodhya to Colombo via Rameshwaram, on the Ramayana circuit.https://t.co/WR9HIYl0ae pic.twitter.com/jcGKeiBz12
— Piyush Goyal (@PiyushGoyal) July 10, 2018
What is the Package cost of the Ramayana Express?
The train with Delhi route will have a fare of Rs 15,120 per person and the train from Madurai route will cost Rs 15,830 per passenger. The SriLankan tour will be charged separately by the passengers. This Yatra package will cost starting from 36,970 per person. The passengers opting for SriLanka tour will have to take a flight from Chennai to Cambodia.
Package Details of Ramayana Express
Package Name: Ramayana Yatra SZBD334
Mode of Travel: Train
Date of Journey (DOJ): 14.11.2018
Departure Station and Time: Madhurai at 16:55 PM.
Destinations Covered: Hampi, Nasik, Chitrakut Dham, Darbhanga, Sitamarhi, Janakpuri (Nepal), Ayodhya, Nandigram, Allahabad, Shringaverpur, Rameswaram, Devipatinam and Thirupullani.
Price Per Pax (5 years above): Rs. 5,830
Package Name: Shri Ramayana Yatra-Sri Lanka Ex Delhi
Source Airport: Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi
Mode of Travel: Flight
Airlines: Srilankan Airlines
Tour Dates: 20-Nov-2018, 15-Dec-2018, 22-Jan-2019, 21-Feb-2019, 24-Mar-2019
Flight Details: Flight no. UL 196 will depart from Delhi Airport at 18:35 Hours and will arrive Cambodia Airport by 22:10 hours. During return journey, the flight will will leave from Cambodia Airport by 14:00 Hours and arrive at Delhi Airport by 17:35 Hours.
Note: The Arrival and departure time is subject to the availability of flights.The timings may change.
Cost of Booking: The booking cost Ranges from Rs. 34,160 to Rs. 65,120 depending on the occupancy a traveler will select for the journey.
Recommended Read: 5 Revamping Steps from IRCTC for a Comfortable Journey
From Where to Book Ramayana Express Tour Package:
Booking can be done through irctctourism.com and through the Tourist Facilitation Centre, Zonal Offices and Regional Offices. Booking will be available online soon.
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Rohit is an avid blogger as well an eminent digital marketeer. He has immense passion towards food blogging. His hobbies include travelling, cooking and watching movies. He is the content analyst for RailMitra.