The Historic Grand Canyon Railway

The Grand Canyon is one of America’s most treasured landmarks, and as with many of our most scenic places, it has a train story that dates back to our early history.


It was 1901 when the Grand Canyon Railway first transported passengers from Williams, Arizona to the South Rim of the canyon. The ride became a popular trip and over the years some of the train’s more famous passengers included Doris Day, Clark Gable and Theodore Roosevelt. In addition to tourists, the train also shuttled building materials and water to the canyon.


Over the years the automobile became more and more popular, and in 1968 the line ceased operation for a period of time. Luckily it was brought back into service in 1989 once again by entrepreneurs Max and Thelma Biegert.


Today the fleet includes 13 Pullman coach cars and 12 Budd coach cars. First class cars include luxury parlor cars and scenic dome cars. Besides experiencing a historic ride, passengers also depart from and arrive in depots that date back to the early 1900s – true landmarks of our nation’s history. 


The train begins its journey in Williams, Arizona and travels 65 miles to the South Rim of Grand Canyon National Park. The two hour and 15 minute ride leaves plenty of time for taking pictures, and since you won’t have to deal with traffic, you can just enjoy the view.

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