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“Whoooo YAH”

Texas State Railroad
Ranked #1 of 4 things to do in Rusk
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: At Texas State Railroad tradition meets comfort and adventure for the whole family. The ride includes comfortable seating, food and beverage service and historic narration on a rail journey that whisks you back into another century. The casual grace of train travel never goes out of style. From the moment one steps aboard a vintage 1920’s car, the excitement of being on the rails is exhilarating. This three-hour train ride, with an hour-and-one-half layover either in Rusk or Palestine, takes passengers on a 25-mile journey through a State Park and 125 years of history. Celebrated steam or vintage diesel locomotives are the muscle that pulls the consist of cars representing a bygone form of notable travel.
Useful Information: Wheelchair access, Activities for young children, Activities for older children
Reviewed August 11, 2013

What a ride. It may not have the best scenery in the summer because of all the trees, but just sitting back and enjoying the RIDE was worth it all. I was first a little hesitate about paying what they were asking but then with all the little surprises they give you, it was worth it to me. The round trip ride lasted 4 hours. You have time at RUSK (our turnaround) to eat a picnic lunch and look around the gift shop and watch the movie. You can even watch the engine being turned around so we can go back to Palestine. There were lots of people the day I went and we all had a good time. We had a great lady as our informer of any question you had. We had snacks and soda all the time, also popcorn and coffee(small charge for Popcorn). I will do it again in the fall, the leaves will be beautiful.

3  Thank Linda S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"steam engine"
in 17 reviews
"train ride"
in 39 reviews
"boxed lunch"
in 6 reviews
"chex mix"
in 3 reviews
"padded seats"
in 3 reviews
"departure location"
in 2 reviews
"trip takes"
in 2 reviews
"fun trip"
in 7 reviews
"open cars"
in 2 reviews
"climate control"
in 2 reviews
"tasting beer"
in 2 reviews
"easter bunny"
in 3 reviews
"hour round trip"
in 2 reviews
"rail car"
in 2 reviews
"fall foliage"
in 2 reviews
"the polar express"
in 8 reviews
"first class car"
in 4 reviews
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125 - 129 of 174 reviews

Reviewed July 31, 2013

The train ride was really nice. We went on a Sunday and were told that is their least busiest day. We went ahead and bought the "first class" tickets so we could be on a car with air conditioning. Trevon, our car attendant, was very friendly and helpful. If you get there early, they allow you to go in to the engine and see everything up close. The gift shops are only open for a short period of time. So make sure you stop by on your layover because they won't be open when you get back. There was a car where you can buy drinks and popcorn and they are very reasonably priced. First class riders got snack mix and drinks included in the price as well as a video of the train. The train left around 11 and got back around 3:30. The scenery is beautiful. I would definitely recommend taking the train ride.

4  Thank tinjen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 22, 2013

Great family fun ... might consider riding halfway though and catching the other train coming back towards Palestine if you have little ones that are easily bored. That long trip back after the layover in Rusk really seemed to bore some of the kids on board. But the adults loved the ride both ways.

5  Thank Tee J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 13, 2013

The Little Train That Does.

Tired of driving through East Texas? Want to see the piney woods up close? The Texas State Railroad provides a restful stop and a nice antidote for Road Weariness. The good—the service is great, the train wasn’t crowded, we didn’t get held up, and the scenery was pleasant. The bad: The steam locomotive was in the shop, you have to be near Palestine Texas, only the “first-class car” is air conditioned.

There are people who hunt down old trains to ride. I admire them and they are legion. If your closet is full of slides and photos of old trains and you sometimes wear an engineer’s hat when no one else is in the house, you might be one of them. Maybe you’ve ridden the train from Silverton to Durango or the Skunk train from Ft. Bragg to nowhere and then back. If so, the little East Texas Railroad train that runs from Palestine (please, it’s pronounced Pal-es-TEEN) to Rusk (pronounced just as it sounds—like toast) is for you. Like most of Texas it can be HOT but we found April in Texas (now there’s a song title) just right. The countryside through which we glided 25 miles was green and nice to look at and no big rigs tried to pass us when we were going 75 as they sometimes did on Interstate 20.

Tired of your old mug? You can get a nifty tall, insulated drinking vessel adorned with photos of the steam engine free when a guest in the reserved car on The Texas State Railroad run between Palestine and Rusk (sure the mug is made in China, but, hey, what isn’t). While you sip your cool non-alcoholic drink fetched by friendly staff attentive to your every need, you can feast you eyes on green fields and bucolic scenes far from the four (or more) lane. It’s relaxing and you may even find yourself dozing a bit as startled cattle watch you glide by open-mouthed (that would be the cattle that are open-mouthed).

At the end of the line, you’ll find a handsome little station at Rusk with an adjacent park-like area (with lake) where you can sit in the shade and enjoy a bite to eat. No need to hurry but you won’t want to dally when you hear the locomotive signal it is getting ready to go. As you exit through the gift shop you may find something you can’t resist. Grabbing your ice cream bar you get back on the train which miraculously has made a U-turn and soon you are headed the other direction from whence you came and are able to nod at the cattle on the other side of the track until that moment of inestimable excitement when you pass another train—going, fortunately the other way on another set of tracks—feet way. After your heartrate returns to near normal, you find time for one more little nap before you are back from whence you came and are hustled off the train to make room for another group of happy riders on The Texas State Railroad.

5  Thank larrykav
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed June 9, 2013

my husband and I went for our anniversary and rode the train from palestine to rusk. we rode in the lone star coach. It is air conditioned and an adult only coach. we met a couple from austin,tx also traveling. thr coach attendant, kiley was awsome1 the conductor was funny. we laughed alot and had a great time!

3  Thank melinda g
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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