Tour Texas by Train

For a relaxing tour through the state of Texas, why not go on a train? Trains are a fantastic way to loosen up and let someone else deliver you to your destination without the problem of flying. Plus, you can take in the vast selection of scenery as you cross the state, something nearly impossible to do by car or airplane.

There are two special trains that run in Texas that can be fun for the whole family. One is called the Texas State Railroad and passes through east Texas from Rusk to Palestine. The passenger train is pulled by either a refurbished steam engine or an antique Alco cab diesel. The stations at both ends of the line have managed to hold on to their 1800's fashion look and feel, adding to the authenticity of the trip. The wilderness covered is beautiful and offers youngsters a chance to see what historic train travel and accommodation was like.

The other unique railroad in Texas is the Austin Steam Train. This train is designed more for excursions than travel to a destination, but it’s just as fun nonetheless. Passengers can choose from three levels of luxury — coaches, which are open-window train cars, excursion cars that have heat and A/C, and finally, lounge cars, which are climate-controlled and have snacks offered as well. Once again, it's a excellent teaching experience for the kids, and adults will have fun, too, recalling the smell and sounds of the trains they grew up with.

If you want to include another level of excitement to your train trip, plan to go on Halloween or Christmas. There are unique train rides and events that happen for the duration of these two holidays. The Halloween tour consists of a kid's costume judging contest, a lot of candy handed out, and ghost stories in the darkened cars. At Christmas, the train travels to the town of Burnet, where all of the residents are dressed in outfits and the city is appropriately decorated to look like Bethlehem during the time of Christ's birth. There are even domestic farm animals like goats, chickens, and cows, roaming the streets for additional authenticity.

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