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“A Great Adventure Into The Old West” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad

Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad
Chama, NM
888 286 2737
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Ranked #1 of 5 Attractions in Chama
Type: Scenic Railroads, Landmarks
Attraction details
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“A Great Adventure Into The Old West”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2013

In Northern New Mexico, about 90 Miles North of Santa Fe is the Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad. If you have a fascination for steam locomotives, being surrounded by beautiful mountain scenes and wilderness, Than this is the adventure for you. If you are up for a fulfilling but not too long trip, the Sunday Express is recommended. Purchase your tickets at the Train Depot in the middle of the small rustic town of Chama NM. The staff at the ticket window are ever so friendly and helpful. The train depot itself has real history built in the 1800s. The Sunday Express boards at 10:40am and departs at 11:00AM for Cumbres Pass. Take in the experience of riding a real steam train. If you sit in the front car (coach) behind the engine, DO purchase the cool protective eye wear for $4. Its worth it. You will see soot and smoke as the engine chugs up the line (but hey its an adventure!) The train makes a stop and lunch is served (delicious) in a beautiful open area with enclosure or open picnic tables. The train takes you back down to Chama. Wildlife abounds in this area so get cameras ready. The price for coach was worth it at around $60 per person. Kids up to 12 years are free which was awesome.

Visited July 2013
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178 reviews from our community

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English first
Alamogordo, New Mexico
Top Contributor
119 reviews 119 reviews
61 attraction reviews
Reviews in 40 cities Reviews in 40 cities
67 helpful votes 67 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 12, 2013

I had wanted to do this all of my life, and it was worth it. we rode from chama to osier for lunch, then back to chama. I was very impressed by how well organized everything was and also how nice the people were. we were in the coach cars, but spent the largest part of the trip in the open gondola. the scenery is spectacular, mountains, large meadows with streams running in them. the lunch was good, and all you can eat, they serve enough the first time, didn't notice many going back for seconds. it's not gourmet, but they are feeding 200 or 300 people at a time, so take it for what it's worth. the lunch is included in the train ticket price. it's worth setting aside some time just to wonder around the train yard. they will tell you the few places you are not allowed to go, that leaves about 400 acres you can go to. the guys are happy to answer any questions you may have, but keep in mine they are getting the train ready to go, and may have periods where they are busy. i'd complete the experience by staying at THE HOTEL. it's a 1930s railroad hotel, like staying in a museum, be prepared for an old building[it is just like it was when it was built].

Visited July 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
24 attraction reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“Glad we did it”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 11, 2013

We took advantage of the Kids Ride Free discount and rode the train!
So much fun! Beautiful scenery! Adorable animals! Good food! Wonderful narrator! Wonderful time!

Only suggestion would be to just do the Chama to Osier train.
All the real beauty and wildlife is in the first half of the train ride. The rest of the ride gets a little long and even though you would miss the tunnels they're not worth the extra time. And the kids (and husband) start getting bored and asking when the ride will be over.

Overall though a fantastic experience. Glad we did it :-)

Visited July 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Blanco, Texas
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Beautiful Train Ride”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 10, 2013

If you have never ridden on a coal fired steam train, the Cumbres & Toltec is the one to take. I first rode this train in 1979, and I loved it as a child, but to ride it again, 30 years later, and to still love it should tell you a lot.

What I recommend for people without children is to pay the extra money for the Parlor Car. It is $169, but you get an excellent trip. The car will seat only 20 people, there is a server/tourguide who is there to assist with your trip, and you get the very last car on the train. You can stand outside on the back of the train with the brakeman and watch the scenery go by. On this trip, there were only 10 people in the car, so there was plenty of room to move around and get great pictures.

Another bonus with purchasing the Parlor Car ticket is the complimentary membership in the Friends of the Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad. You will get a quarterly newsletter talking about the train, but you also get the chance to help maintain the railroad. My husband is very excited about coming out for one of the work sessions to help get the train ready for the season next May.

I definately recommend starting in Chama, and coming back by bus from Antonito. Next trip, my husband and I will start in Chama, but come back by train in Osier, just to experience going down the mountain by train.

If you don't want to spend the money on the Parlor Car, the other cars are great. Just go experience this amazing railroad. But make sure to open the window, and stick your head out to get the full effect of the steam!

Visited July 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vail, Arizona
Top Contributor
50 reviews 50 reviews
18 attraction reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
“Nice Experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2013

We stayed in the tourist car and it was a very nice experience. Very pretty country side. The volunteers and workers were very nice and informative. The lunch stop was also nice. The food was good and you could eat as much as you wanted. Overall, a nice trip.

Visited June 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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