Step aboard the Royal Gorge Route Railroad and embark upon a breathtaking journey that started back in the 1870s. Like a barroom brawl on wheels, two railroad companies—the Denver & Rio Grande and the Santa Fe—vied for the route. But the Gorge had only enough room for one set of tracks, and the legal battle dubbed the “Royal Gorge War” began. Once the dust settled, the Denver & Rio Grande came out the victors.
Today, the Royal Gorge Route Railroad’s 1950s-era air-conditioned rail cars ferry more than 100,000 passengers each year for a 24-mile round trip through the dramatic Royal Gorge over the famous Hanging Bridge.
Take a ride on Colorado’s first and finest scenic streamliner for an epic adventure along the tumbling waters of the Arkansas River deep within the granite cliffs of the Royal Gorge. Classes of service hark back to a time when travel was an elegant and leisurely affair, which has earned the Royal Gorge Route Railroad its reputation as the country’s premier excursion railroad. In fact, the Royal Gorge Route Railroad was recently named one of the Top 8 Train Rides in America by Trains magazine.
Keep your eyes peeled for bald eagles and blue herons soaring above the tracks. As you travel through Tunnel Drive, one of three tunnels you will pass through, watch the surrounding canyons for wildlife in the distance. You may spot a bighorn sheep or even a bear.
Suit your budget or appetite with multi-course meals in restored dining or observation dome rail cars. Consider classic, coach-style seating with access to concession and lounge cars or awaken the child within for a special ride in a locomotive with a real-life engineer.
For the first class menu, choose between slow-roasted prime rib, carved to order, airline chicken with bourbon beurre blanc, pork osso buco, vegetable napoleon, or pesto salmon, followed by a chef’s choice dessert. Pair with wine from the Conductor’s Reserve List.
For a stirring combination of fine dining, wines, and a scenic ride, hop aboard the Colorado Wine Train for lunch or dinner where you’ll enjoy a seasonally inspired meal and a wine list featuring Colorado’s best. Or, book an evening on the Murder Mystery Train, where the wild west comes alive and you get to solve a crime. Whatever seat you choose, be sure to take advantage of the open-air car for a 360-degree view.
Holidays are a cause to celebrate on the Royal Gorge Route Railroad. Reserve a spot for special train rides on Mother’s Day, Valentine’s Day, Easter, and Oktoberfest as they fill up fast. For a truly special experience, book a trip on the Santa Express Train, where kids get a chance to meet Santa and journey to the North Pole. For an all-ages ride throughout the holidays, check out the Holiday Train, where food and holiday cocktails are served along the route.
The Royal Gorge Route Railroad is closer than you think. Located just 45 minutes southwest of Colorado Springs and less than 2 hours southwest of Denver, it’s great for those looking for a unique and special event.
Want to share your experience with a friend or family member? Gift them a ride they will remember with a gift certificate to the Royal Gorge Route Railroad. Gift certificates can be used for journeys, the gift shop, and dining on the train.