This 35-acre railway museum is a train-lover’s dream. Young fans of Thomas the Train and Chuggington will be bursting for joy as they get to see and explore real live locomotives.
Two huge warehouses filled with steam and diesel locomotives, passenger cars, mail trains and more. Kids will enjoy moving from platform to platform as many of the trains are open for guests to explore. Roam through the corridors, sit in the seats (if permitted), peek into the cabins, pretend you are an engineer, head back to the caboose, ring the bell, and put your imagination to work. It will feel like you just walked in to the early 20th century.
In building one, don’t miss the model train room. The kids will love pressing the button and watching the miniature train go round and round.
Named the official Georgia transportation history museum, the railway museum has some fascinating locomotives. You can stand next to the massive driving wheels of the locomotive that once pulled passenger trains to Key West on the “railroad that went to sea” or pose on the platform of the private car once used by President Warren G. Harding.
Finally, take a ride on the museum’s only full-scale running train or on the miniature park train. Engineers even dress the role – conductor hats, vintage overalls, and all – making the experience that much more real for the little ones. Check the museum’s website or call ahead to make sure the trains will be running on the day of your visit.
Special events for kids are happening year-round. On the second Thursday of each month, the museum’s education department hosts a program for pre-school aged children featuring different pieces of locomotive equipment. On Oct. 26 it's “Train or Treat.” Celebrate Halloween with costume contests at noon and 4 p.m., wagon rides nd trick or treating on decorated train cars.
– Kirby Cooperman
Southeastern Railway Museum
3595 Buford Hwy., Duluth; 770-476-2013
When: Open 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; days open changes with season. Open Thurs.-Sat. from Sept. to Dec.; check website for museum schedule and train rides.
Cost: $8 for adults, $5 for ages 2-12, free for children younger than 2; Caboose Train ride, $3; Park Train Ride, $2.