The 5 Best Fall Foliage Train Tours in New England

They’re treasures in motion, these rail-riding relics—rattling and toot-tooting across New England landscapes as if a century or more has been rewound. Tourist trains now, they’re just the ticket if you want to leave the driving to an engineer while you train your eyes on spectacular fall foliage displays. In our guide to The Best 5 Fall Foliage Trains in New England, we share our five favorite rides.

Freight Train on the River
©Yankee Magazine/Mark Fleming

Learn from the editors of Yankee, and from our readers, where the best spots are in New England for riding the rails, planning a weekend by the ocean, or finding the perfect indoor adventure!

They’re treasures in motion, these rail-riding relics—rattling and toot-tooting across New England landscapes as if a century or more has been rewound. Tourist trains now, they’re just the ticket if you want to leave the driving to an engineer while you train your eyes on spectacular fall foliage displays. In our guide to The Best 5 Fall Foliage Trains in New England, we share our five favorite rides. For our first pick in the list, the bench seats on an open-air car are first to be claimed when a vintage diesel locomotive sputters to life, especially as falling temperatures coax forth autumn colors. So bundle up, arrive early, and summon the fortitude of a hardy Mainer. You won’t regret opting for unimpeded views of painted trees in a rural landscape that’s little changed since this rail route’s debut in 1870.
Cog Railway
©Yankee Magazine/Mark Fleming
On another trip, you can ride the rails with local lore and railroading tid-bits on a narrated, hour-long ride in a smooth-riding 1955 Budd Rail Diesel Car. You’re free to leave your comfy seat and step out onto the vestibule to shoot photos as you pass a Victorian-era cemetery and a mosaic of autumn colors. One railway in our list was built 140 years ago, and passengers still audibly gasp at the panoramic mountain vistas as this 5-hour ride rumbles through some of the most breathtaking scenery on the East Coast. Enjoy a three-course dinner in the dining car, or head to the snack bar for a quick bite. You can also discover antique transportation for a multitasking generation, in our last pick. See the kaleidoscope of New England foliage from both a vintage Pullman car and the breezy deck of a riverboat. Or take in a romantic “show” aboard a restored 1920’s Pullman dining car as mother nature glides by in slow motion. New England is renowned for breathtaking fall color, and we share our picks for the best spots in The Best 5 Fall Foliage Trains in New England—one of many great guides in our Best 5 Collection! Want to find the best adventures in New England? Our Best 5 Collection gives you a local’s take on where to go for the best scenery, food, and retreats. With your Yankee All-Access Charter Membership, you have full access to everything in the Best 5 Collection, including:
Freight Train Crossing Stone Bridge
Yankee Magazine/Mark Fleming
[preview_boilerplate]