Connecticut August 07, 2017
Take A Ride On Antique Trains And Trolleys At These Incredible Connecticut Museums
At these Connecticut museums, take a ride back in time on authentic trains, trolleys, and even a riverboat. You’ll also learn about the local ecosystem and history as you take in the amazing views.
1. Railroad Museum Of New England/Naugatuck Railroad Company, Thomaston
Beginning at the historic 1881 Thomaston station, rides operated by the Railroad Museum of New England offer a one-of-a-kind view of the Naugatuck Valley. It's the only railroad in North America that crosses the face of a dam.
2. The Essex Steam Train & Riverboat, Essex
Take a 12-mile, 2.5-hour journey through a valley the Nature Conservancy called "one of the last great places on earth." The experience begins with a train ride through the picturesque countryside. Then, passengers board a riverboat for a cruise along the Connecticut River, passing local landmarks including Gillette Castle, Goodspeed Opera House, and the Haddam Swing Bridge along the way.
3. The Shore Line Trolley Museum, East Haven
Take a three-mile trip through the woods and wetlands from the oldest operating trolley museum in the country, On select weekends, the museum allows guests to operate the vintage vehicles after receiving special instruction.
4. Danbury Railway Museum, Danbury
After the Metro-North Railroad closed the station house at its Danbury stop to build a more modern one, it was restored to its former glory and turned into a museum focused on railway history. In addition to an impressive collection of vintage trains, the museum houses the only intact surviving railroad turntable in Connecticut. Rides on the museum's "Rail Yard Local" include a spin on the turntable.
5. Connecticut Trolley Museum, East Windsor
Pay just once and take the three-mile trolley ride as many times as you want. Bonus: the trolley museum is on the same site as the Connecticut Fire Museum, which includes a large collection of vintage firefighting equipment.
Each of these museums combines learning about local locomotive history with a highly Instagrammable ride experience. Most host special events seasonally, including “haunted” rides for Halloween. Would you prefer to ride on a summer day, or will you hold out for spookier rides later in the year?
For a more decadent train experience, check out the
Naugatuck Railroad Company’s wine and chocolate tasting-themed ride.