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You’ll Never Guess What’s Hiding Deep Inside A Massachusetts Forest

Deep in the Needham Town Forest, there’s a strange and wonderful little city.

Martini Junction is the passion project of Jim Metcalf. Over the course of ten years, he has built and maintained an elaborate 120-foot miniature model railroad among the trees. And the level of detail is incredible.

Tiny figures relax in fairy-sized Adirondack chairs. Minuscule swinging bridges span the gaps between tree branches, complete with hand-carved supports and functional doors. Miniature houses sit on manicured moss lawns. A wee wooden dock extends out into a leafy puddle, while small animal figurines prowl the shrunken world of Martini Junction, keeping a close watch over the tracks.

Metcalf and his wife discovered the spot while roaming the woods, and decided it would be the perfect place for a picnic and martini. Over the course of the next ten years, Metcalf began to construct the elaborate railroad. The tracks extend over 120 feet, and reach a height of four feet at their tallest point. Trails chug around the handcrafted tracks, and watching them ride the bends and valleys is mesmerizing.

In addition to lots of incredible miniature scenery, the spot features a human-sized table and seating – it’s still a great spot for a martini – as well as a small waterfall.

Anyone can visit Martini Junction, but you’ll need to have Metcalf there in order to witness the railroad come to life. As this isn’t a public attraction, but a personal hobby, it’s really a matter of luck whether or not you’ll bump into the wizard behind the curtain.

This place isn’t easy to find, but with a little guidance, you’ll be strolling this whimsical landscape in no time. And the path leading to Martini Junction is almost as delightfully odd as the city itself.

When you arrive, park at the end of Robinwood Avenue. Enter the forest and immediately turn right. Follow the trees bearing white marks and tiny white birdhouses. After about 15 minutes (or a bit longer if you’re walking at a more leisurely pace), you’ll hit an unmarked trail veering off to the right. This trail will feature the same tiny white birdhouses, but they’ll have orange roofs. Keep walking for another ten minutes or so, and you’ll stumble upon Martini Junction.

Have you ever visited this spot? Would you be interested in checking out Martini Junction? Let us know!

Sophia
Massachusetts native. Freelance writer and strawberry eater. Get in touch: smitrokostas@onlyinyourstate.com.