Took the SAM Shortline in early October from Cordele with stops in Americus, Plains and Archery. This is a wonderful outing for couples, girls weekend outing, families. (It's a full day so might be a little much for pre-schoolers.) It's plenty of train riding - much better than some rides I have done in the mountains that only went a short distance. The staff is made up mainly of volunteers who are friendly and helpful. They make sure that everyone has a good time and is well informed about the areas where the train stops. They do this with no silliness or foolishness like some excursions. The scenery is mainly farms and very small rural towns - lots of cotton and peanut fields - very pleasant and relaxing. There is a trolley in Americus to transport you to the area with antique shops and restaurants. Also, the Habitat for Humanity Discovery Center is just across from the train stop. This is a must see - you may not have time to see it in depth, but you can get a good overview. We plan to go back on our own and fully tour this. The stop in Plains was nice. We ate at Mom's - very good Southern cooking. We stayed in Plains rather than go to Archery so we would have more time in Plains and then just caught the train on its way back through. The gift shop at the Cordele depot has a variety of train items and other toys for kids, among the usual touristy trinkets. They also have some very nice items like cookbooks that are reasonably priced.