13 Haunted Train Rides In The US That Will Terrify You In The Best Way Possible
Haunted hayrides are so passé – it’s all about haunted train rides this Halloween. Combining the old-fashioned thrill of riding through the dark on a train with the classic frights, spooks and starts of a haunted house experience, these rides will make you shiver in a good way.
This 40-minute train ride will take you through dark, eerie swamplands of East Texas. You’ll see ghostly spirits drift out of the swamps and chasing after the train, and the actors (or are they?) will keep you on the edge of your seat the whole time. The train ride is kid-friendly, but you’ll have just as much fun as the little ones. You’ll also learn about the history of the area and the railway. Buy your tickets as early as possible, as seating is limited and reservations sell out quickly. Learn more here.
This haunted train ride is perfect for families with young goblins and ghouls. The excursion is 40 minutes of spooky fun and entertaining Halloween activities. Kids will receive gift bags from Dental Depot, which is sure to make parents smile. This ride is held on October 29 with departure times of 9:15 a.m., 11:15 a.m., 1:15 p.m. and 3:15 p.m. Dressing up is encouraged, and all adults who wear a costume will receive a $2 discount on their ticket. Ticket prices are $12 for ages 13+, $5 for children ages 3-12, and FREE for children under 3 years of age. Look here for more info (3400 NE Grand Blvd., Oklahoma City, Oklahoma)
If you prefer your frights with a side of history and local lore, this is the train ride for you. All through October, the Hoosac Valley Legends Twilight Train will whisk passengers along on a two-hour journey through ancient cemeteries and past gorgeous mountain ranges. You’ll be able to step off the train and explore Southview Cemetery on foot, all while knowledgeable guides fill you in on the haunted history and local ghost stories of the area. Tickets are $20 per person, and the experience isn’t recommended for guests under 10 years of age. This year, you can catch the twilight train on October 15, 22 and 29. Trains leave promptly at 5:30 p.m. Go here for more information. (98 Crowley Avenue, North Adams, Massachusetts)
Hop about the California State Railroad Museum’s annual haunted train ride this October. Steaming out of downtown Sacramento, this ghoulish excursion will take you past dazzling fall foliage and spooky sights. The train and staff are dressed up for the season, and wearing your own spirited finery is highly encouraged. This ride is family-friendly, so bring everyone along. Check here for more information and ticket reservations. (125 I Street, Sacramento, California)
Each year, the Nevada Northern Railway in Ely transforms its historic trains into mobile fright factories. The Haunted Ghost Train is staffed by over 100 volunteers who are committed to scaring you out of your wits…and giving you a few laughs. You’ll cruise through the area and encounter UFOs, headless horsemen, ghosts and other creepy fare. Children under four years old ride free, and check their website for available dates. (1100 Avenue A, East Ely, Nevada)
On the last weekend of October, the Chelatchie Prairie Railroad offers one of the spookiest train rides around. This ride skips the blood and gore in favor of old-fashioned frights. You’ll meet the grim headless horseman, chug through a 330-foot, forbidding rock tunnel and stop at Moulton Station to visit Yacolt Falls. This year’s Headless Horseman Halloween Train pulls out of the station on October 29 and 30 at 9:30 a.m., 12 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. Learn more here. (207 N Railroad Avenue, Yacolt, Washington)
Once a year, witches and goblins arrive at this quaint railroad village to board the Ghost Train. You’ll cruise through the local landscape and see all sorts of delightfully creepy characters. The train ride is meant to be a good time for all ages, so the scares are kept pretty tame.The train runs on October 28 and 29, every 30 minutes from 5:30 p.m. to 7: 30 p.m. Tickets are only $3 and are available at the door. For more info, click here. (586 Wiscasset Road, Boothbay, Maine)
This is a haunted train ride that revels in gore and intense scares. You’ll want to leave the kids at home for this trip into a forest filled with blood-covered clowns, zombies, axe-wielding murderers and terrifying monsters. The ride last about 30 minutes and runs every half hour from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Tickets are $6 per person and are available for weekend dates through October. Check out the website here. (2002 Shorefield Road, Wheaton, Maryland)
Operating out Mount Pleasant, the Midwest Central Railroad’s haunted train ride is a one-mile excursion that definitely delivers a few frights, but won’t dish up anything too scary for the younger set. You’ll see plenty of creepy decorations, and get the chance to test your courage at haunted house. Tickets are $10 per person for “all you can ride.” Kids under 4 ride free. The railroad also runs the Ghostly Trolley, which offers a similar spooky experience. Check out their website here for more info. (405 E Thresher Road, Mount Pleasant, Iowa)
The annual Halloween spook train at Junction Valley is a unique take on a haunted train ride. Visitors snuggle down into open-air cars and are pulled through a variety of creepy wooded areas, over haunted bridges and even inside a 100-foot tunnel packed with scary creatures. Kids are welcome on the ride, but this train definitely packs a strong, spooky punch, so young visitors should be prepared for a few frights. Check out their website for ticket info. (7065 Dixie Highway, Bridgeport, Michigan)
Head over to Rock River Thresheree for a spooky train ride double-header. They offer two different haunted ride experiences: one that’s not so scary, and one that will absolutely petrify you. The coal-burning locomotive pulls into the station every 20 minutes or so, and you can indulge in seasonal treats and crafts while you wait. The props and decorations are fantastic, which makes this a popular attraction. Learn more here. (51 E Cox Road, Edgerton, Wisconsin)
This autumn train ride will take you on a terrifying rail adventure. You’ll be whisked into the woods of New Hope on a one hour trip filled with spooky surprises, haunted happenings and even an excursion into a creepy corn maze. The train runs on select dates from October 7 through Halloween, and pulls out of the station at 7 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. This train ride is recommended for children 13 years and old, as it can get a little too intense for younger tots. Find out more here. (32 West Bridge St, New Hope, Pennsylvania)
The Haunted Express operates out of the Pine Creek Railroad in Allaire State Park. It usually offers scenic daytime trips through the park, but at night this train transforms into something from your most ghastly nightmares. You’ll roll out into the gloom and eventually be forced from the train into the woods, where all manner of terrifying creatures await. The experience isn’t recommended for kids, but teens and adults will definitely enjoy the ride. Tickets are just $7.50 and upcoming dates are 10/28 and 10/29. Trains run every 30 minutes between 7:30 and 9:30. Check out the website here. (4265 Atlantic Avenue, Wall Township, New Jersey)