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San Diego Model Railroad Museum

1649 El Prado, San Diego, CA 92101-1621 (Balboa Park)
619 696 0199
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Ranked #29 of 221 attractions in San Diego
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Type: Specialty Museums
Description: One of the world's largest model railroad museums features a scale model railway that replicates San Diego's tracks.
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122 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    73
    37
    8
    3
    1
Date | Rating
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English first
Orange, Virginia
Top Contributor
123 reviews 123 reviews
35 attraction reviews
80 helpful votes 80 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2014 NEW

Of course it helps if you love model trains, but really, one would have to be a curmudgeon not to enjoy this little museum. It is well worth the admission. Most of the layouts are based on real California railroads and the level of detail is mind boggling. In one there are little tiny people flying little tiny kites. These... More

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Roeland Park, KS, a KC suburb
Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
8 attraction reviews
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 12, 2014

The variety of layouts here are great- and some are still a work in progress. There are folks there working on the layouts that were very informative when we asked about various items. The attention to details in all of the scenes is absolutely amazing!! They have obviously spent hundreds of thousands of hours on these layouts. If you look... More

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Irvine, Ca.
Senior Contributor
40 reviews 40 reviews
16 attraction reviews
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2014

I took my husband, baby, and mother-in-law to this museum because I thought my 18 month old would enjoy it. My husband and mother-in-law were reluctant to go, but they both really liked it and agreed that it was better than they expected it to be. We were disappointed that two of the rooms were closed for remodeling while we... More

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AZ
Top Contributor
117 reviews 117 reviews
88 attraction reviews
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 28, 2014

I'm guessing that this place got its start through hobbyists. I'm a kid at heart and enjoy model trains, but not crazy about them. As previously stated by others for those not into model trains or the kitsch, memorabilia, and sweet nostalgia it inspires will be bored. I found it to be a great place to spend an hour, but... More

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Aptos, California
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
19 attraction reviews
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 21, 2014

This is easy. If you like to see model trains, then go. If you don't like to see model trains, don't go. Important information: this is not a Disney-like designed and well-polished exhibit built expressly for the purpose of visitors. The layouts have been built by local modelers who are volunteers. Much of one layout is still under construction (Tehachapi... More

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San Diego, California
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
8 attraction reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2014

Don't get super high expectations, its small but its wonderful. Take the kids and talk to the hobbyists. They love to share their wisdom, creations and stories.

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Towson, Maryland
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
3 attraction reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 13, 2014

This is an amazing museum if you like model trains. I've been coming here since I was a little kid and I am constantly amazed by it. It's also nice to see that they are continuing to build and expand their layouts.

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Stockton, California
Top Contributor
56 reviews 56 reviews
29 attraction reviews
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 30, 2014

If you like model railroads this is the place they have several gauges of train layouts N,HO, and larger good place to get ideas for the track layouts and fun to see the trains work, worth the visit

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Owings Mills, Maryland
Top Contributor
63 reviews 63 reviews
24 attraction reviews
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 29, 2014 via mobile

This museum is fun to see, even for grown ups, not just littles ones. Loads of model train equipment. Lots of special scenery. Great little visit.

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Las Vegas NV
Top Contributor
66 reviews 66 reviews
38 attraction reviews
136 helpful votes 136 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 21, 2014

This place is all kinds of awesome. I've loved trains ever since I was a little kid. And now the big kid in me made sure we paid a visit to what is supposedly North America's largest accredited model railroad museum. They have gigantic recreations of actual geography like the Tehachapi pass loop and the Goat Canyon Trestle. You'll find... More

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