The Riverside & Great Northern Railway is a place that falls under the “best-kept secrets” category. The 15-inch gauge railway is tucked into a pocket of wooded land just north of the downtown Dells. A ride on the train is a great experience for kids and adults alike.
Your experience starts when you drive up to an old-time setting featuring a depot, train, servicing buildings and more.
Grab tickets and climb aboard the steam train. You’ll chug along a scenic, three-mile stretch in the woods. At one point, you’ll cross the nation’s largest rail bridge for a quarter-scale train.
When the train pulls into “Western Springs,” you’ll climb out of the train and workers will manually turn around the engine. While they’re turning the engine around, an expert will tell you a little bit about how steam engines work.
Back at the depot, your little one might be able to fill up the train’s water compartment if you’re lucky.
Rides run on the hour. If you have to wait, there’s a small gift shop/museum to browse through, or you can picnic at the tables scattered about the shady grounds.
Pumpkin Trains run weekends in October, while Santa Trains operate the weekend after Thanksgiving.