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“A fun ride through the National Park”

Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad
Ranked #2 of 13 things to do in Peninsula
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: The Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad offers excursions year round. The train offers an excellent view of the natural scenery and wildlife of the national park and an opportunity to learn about the history of the railroad in valley. The train runs through Cuyahoga Valley National Park with stations from Independence to Akron.
Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

What a fun way to spend a Saturday morning. What boy (or girl) - young or old - doesn’t enjoy a train? It was kind of a throwback to old times when the train was a significant form of transportation. Trainmen recreate the nostalgic feel, dressed appropriately and punch your tickets the old fashioned way. They are also very knowledgeable about the trains and the valley. The online narration that we could access on our phones via a downloaded app was very informative. I learned a lot about the Cuyahoga Valley that I never knew and I’ve lived here most of my life. The trip is 26 miles each way. We left Rockside Station at 9:00 am and returned at 1:00 pm. We were told it is almost entirely run by volunteers. They have done a terrific job restoring the train cars which are in really good condition and really clean.

We had a fantastic time and plan on doing it again soon.

Thank milt330
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"train ride"
in 111 reviews
"polar express"
in 33 reviews
"rockside station"
in 33 reviews
"national park"
in 55 reviews
"north pole"
in 26 reviews
"hour round trip"
in 13 reviews
"dining car"
in 11 reviews
"nice ride"
in 17 reviews
"dome car"
in 24 reviews
"the entire trip"
in 10 reviews
"enjoyable ride"
in 7 reviews
"concession car"
in 16 reviews
"love trains"
in 6 reviews
"towpath trail"
in 16 reviews
"starting point"
in 7 reviews
"hale farm"
in 10 reviews
"bought tickets"
in 8 reviews
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7 - 11 of 516 reviews

Reviewed April 17, 2018 via mobile

My review is of the adult only Ales on Rails. It was easy to purchase tickets online. The price for the ticket plus convenience fee is listed online. We decided to sit in the less expensive coaches at a price of $50 per ticket. The train was on time and boarding was easy. We found our seats which is 4 seats to a section with two facing each other. We were seated in car 2, and car 1 is definitely the party car. During our ride we were served 6, 4-6oz of ales and snacks in between. The staff was wonderful! Very friendly and very interested in making sure all the guests had a wonderful time.

1  Thank Legal_padgurl06
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 13, 2018

Rode the train with friends on a Sunday in April. We had purchased tickets in advance as recommended but on this day it wasn't really necessary. We had the back of our coach car to ourselves allowing us to move around for the best views. Seats are in blocks of four with two seats facing another two seats. Seats are padded and fairly comfortable. Windows were large and clean. We boarded the train at the Rockside Rd. station. It took about 3 1/2 hours to ride to Akron and back. It is possible to board at other places along the route or to get off to do some hiking or biking. It was a nice time of year for the ride because without leaves on the trees we were able to see much further into the woods and down rivers and streams. We saw herons and even an eagle's nest where the eagle was sitting, his white head sticking up out of the nest.
The train staff were all friendly and answered all of our questions. Their are restrooms on the train and a snack bar. It was a relaxing way to spend half a day.

1  Thank delily
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 25, 2018

A friend and I signed up for the Evening Ride on the Rails as a last-minute idea for an interesting night out. At $15 it seemed like a reasonable price to take a ride. The concession stand was a little lacking, but the prices were good for what they had, and the staff was nice.

The car that we were in felt a lot like a bus or a subway - worn blue leather seats, metal floors and walls, and no tables to rest our drinks on. I peeked into a couple other cars and they looked a lot nicer, but those may have been more expensive seats. I didn't see the option online to choose better seats, but by that time it said it was almost sold out, and I know that there were other events happening too, like a wine tasting event, which may have gotten the better cars.

However, the biggest disappointment was that for most of the two-hour round trip, they left the bright lights on in the train car (keep in mind it's dark outside by now at 7:30pm in March), and we couldn't see out the windows! By 8:30 all I could see was my reflection. A lot of people complained, and the staff started by turning off just half of the lights - although that didn't do much as they were very bright ceiling lights like you'd find in a school or grocery store. Eventually, near the last half-hour or so of the ride, they shut off the lights and brought out some lanterns and set them on the floor. It definitely seemed like they hadn't considered this happening at all.

I just hope that they've learned from this and will do something different in the future. I understand that they were probably hesitant to turn off the lights for safety reasons, but having those bright lights on made it feel like I was on the subway and not on a scenic railroad. My friend and I had a nice conversation on the ride, but we could have easily done the same thing in a cafe or restaurant, which would have also had better food and interior decorating. Overall, I'm glad it was only $15. I had an okay time, but it could have been carried out better.

One other thing I would like to mention is that the parking lot was very strange. There was one small paved parking lot with lines, then off to the side there was a dirt and gravel lot that you could only get to by driving over a curb. There was one spot where the curb had been worn down enough to drive over without too much trouble, but I saw a few people drive right over the curb and bump the bottoms of their cars on it. I feel like that's something that could pretty easily be fixed to make it more accessible.

Thank Isabella Q
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed March 4, 2018 via mobile

Our first order of business on for our weekend in Cuyahoga National Park was the senic train ride. Being February there were weren't many leaves which made for good viewing in some areas, but also made it seem less senic in many. I hadn't expected so many businessed, farms, etc. along the route. Some train cars were quite full but we managed to find an almost empty car towards the back allowing space to move around. The train had more of a school bus feel rather than tour bus. I had expected it to be more cushy. Our car had a trainman and nps volenteer, who told us about landmarks, did magic and provided advice for our next day of exploring. They were great! Overall it was a nice ride, but not exactly what I had expected.

1  Thank TRC123434
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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