Tuesday, May 30, 2023 | Last Update : 12:42 AM IST

  Metros   Mumbai  23 Jan 2017  CST Heritage: A precious secret just a walk away

CST Heritage: A precious secret just a walk away

Published : Jan 23, 2017, 4:56 am IST
Updated : Jan 23, 2017, 7:11 am IST

Heritage Walk gives little-known information about CST.

At the heart of Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus. (Photo: Rajesh Jadhav)
 At the heart of Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus. (Photo: Rajesh Jadhav)

Mumbai: Where will a city hide one of its best-kept secrets? Well, in plain sight. Yes, that’s what the iconic Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus or CST as its known is. The building declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO sees thousands of Mumbaikars pass below its majestic domes to board a train to work or home every day. There is a way to learn of the secrets of the building — be a part of the CST Heritage Walk organised by the Central Railway itself.

The Walk starts at the Heritage Museum — located just beside the main gates of CST. A guide, trained by the railways takes one around, beginning first with the Heritage Museum that houses models of steam engines, the first ever train to ply in the city, letters denoting why Mumbai was chosen to be the headquarters for the railways and even model railway coaches showing how our train systems have evolved. Our guide, Ashfaque, said, that earlier, the first floor of the left wing of the building housed engineers and designers and many of their works are still preserved. “There was a secure cell in the basement too, which could be reached by a capsule life operated manually. This housed safes with iron grills and every day the earnings from the day’s ticket sales would be kept here,” said another Central railway official.

After the Museum, one enters the heart of the building and directly below the dome atop which is the Statue of the Lady of Progress. Spread over two floors, the first floor housed the first-class waiting room. This floor faces the centre of the Star Chamber. “It’s called so because of the way the ceiling merges to form a star. explained Ashfaque. The Star Chamber now houses the ticket counter, which earlier was the waiting room for second-class ticket holders.

The Tour
Commences from: The Heritage Museum, entrance located right next to the bus depot beside CST
Timings: 3 pm to 5 pm only on weekdays. The tour does not operate on weekends
Cost: Rs 200 per person and Rs 100 for those with a student ID.

Tags: chhatrapati shivaji terminus, unesco, central railway
Location: India, Maharashtra, Mumbai (Bombay)