Train Rides For Kids in New Jersey

train rides for kids nj

When it comes to family activities and holiday fun, few things are as magical as hopping aboard a train ride for kids. Whether you’re looking for a Thomas adventure, a trip to the North Pole or a visit with Santa, New Jersey is home to a number of great train excursions and rides. And as a bonus, most of these trains offer plenty of extra activities and photo ops that keep children engaged.

If your little one is a fan of the Thomas the Tank Engine series, check out the annual Day Out with Thomas at Allaire State Park in Farmingdale or the Delaware River Railroad Excursions in Phillipsburg. In addition to a 25-minute train ride, children get the chance to meet and take pictures with characters from the show, which features Sir Topham Hatt and his crew of lovable anthropomorphic locomotives.

The train ride itself is also a great way to see the natural wooded landscapes of Hunterdon County. The historic passenger coaches depart Flemington and Ringoes on weekends May-October for a scenic 75-minute ride through rural Hunterdon.

For an added touch of magic, the train travels over a 120-foot-long tunnel and curved trestle bridge. You’ll also hear a reading of the classic holiday story Polar Express and receive a silver sleigh bell gift from Santa.

The best part about this experience is that it’s entirely wheelchair accessible, making it easy for children with special needs to enjoy the trip. Plus, the train is filled with Christmas music and decorations, so it’s a true holiday treat for the whole family.

The Whippany Railway Museum offers a similar experience during the fall with its Pumpkin Train. Hop on a round-trip train to Pumpkin Junction, where kids can pick out the perfect pumpkin for their front porch, go on a wagon ride or get lost in the corn maze. This excursion is the largest fundraiser for the Tri-State Railway Historical Society, so tickets go on sale in October.