All aboard the Mountaineer on the Conway Scenic Railroad! Built in 1872, the heritage railroad serviced passengers for nearly 100 years before coming to a halt in 1961. Under new ownership in 1974, the railroad rebranded from a freight and passenger train to a scenic excursion train.
Nearly 50 years after this rebrand, the Conway Scenic Railroad is one of the most popular fall foliage tourist activities in the Northeast.
History of New England’s Conway Scenic Railroad
The New Hampshire railroad once served as a connection between Boston and Maine. The freight offered passengers regular trips between Boston and New Hampshire’s White Mountains before this service was discontinued in 1961.
The routes changed, but the historic steam and diesel engine passenger trains remain the same. Passengers can now travel on the vintage wagons through New Hampshire’s White Mountains.
The Conway Scenic Railroad no longer arrives or departs Boston. All tours begin at the historic train depot in North Conway, New Hampshire. Then passengers take off in an 1874- refurbished vintage Victorian train.
Riding the Conway
There are three classic train excursions offered by the Conway Scenic Railroad company:
- Mountaineer: The most popular and most photographer excursion offered by the railroad company, the Mountaineer is a 5.5-hour trip through Crawford Notch. It’s especially picturesque as the leaves change and reach their peak. It travels through the mountain vistas for a stunning vantage point of the mountain leaves. 55 miles roundtrip
- Bartlett-Sawyer: Tours the Saco River Valley of New Hampshire’s White Mountains. Explore wooded terrains and flowing rivers. The trip lasts 2 hours. 21 miles roundtrip
- Conway Valley Train: The quickest ride of the three, this is a great 1-hour tour to enjoy the excursion without much of a time commitment. 12 miles roundtrip
All trips are on restored vintage train cars complete with upholstered booth seating, hand-painted ceiling murals, and on-freight dining.
The railroad operates from mid-April through December and shuts down during the slushy winter season. There are a few themed excursions taking place throughout the holiday season and outside of the regular operating season:
- Pumpkin Patch express (Fall)
- Journey to the North Pole (December)
- Snow train (January/February)
- Firecracker express (Fourth of July)
Reserve your trip and learn more here.
How much are tickets?
All three journeys offer a mix of economical and first-class tickets. The 1-hour Conway Valley Train starts at $23, the 2-hour Sawyer-River Excursion starts at $52, and the 5.5-hour Mountaineer starts at $79 per person.
How long is the trip?
Trips range from 1 hour to 5.5 hours depending on which experience you select.
Find the Conway Scenic Railroad boarding at Attitash Station and North Conway Station (accessible)
North Conway station boarding: 38 Norcross Circle, North Conway, NH 03860