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Most Scenic Railways in the USA – Top 5

Scenic Railways In the USA

In the old days, traveling across America is best done by train. Today, despite the introduction of first-class bus rides and airplanes, traveling by train remains to be a great way to enjoy and experience moving from one place to another. 

Provided that you are not in a hurry and you want to experience the classic dreaminess of train traveling, here are the most scenic railways in the USA that you shouldn’t miss. 


Rail station In British Columbia

For your first long train trip, you can try the Cascades, a 156-mile trip from Vancouver, British Columbia to Eugene Oregon. This train ride will treat your eyes to one of the most scenic views in the Pacific West as you pass by greenish and eye-refreshing forests. 

Try travelling on a clear day and enjoy Puget Sound in Seattle. Make sure to face the west side so you can get a glimpse of the Olympic Mountains as well. Riding Cascade is like watching different postcards as you pass by town after town. The good news is, you can post each picture you take in your social media accounts as this train comes with Wi-Fi. 

Grand Canyon Railway

Are you looking for something great to do this weekend? Why not ride the Grand Canyon Railway and treat yourself to a breathtaking and dramatic Grand Canyon tour! 

View of train in Gran Canyon National Park railway station.This train ride is 4 hours long so if you have the entire day to yourself, you can do a roundtrip ride easily. This 65-mile trail can be enjoyed with wester music that the train provides. 

The Grand Canyon Railway ride can show you the forest side of Northern Arizona plus its deserted lands. It also passes by the Native American reservations and the highest elevation in the state of AZ. The train stops at the Grand Canyon National Park for a 4-hour stopover so you can breathe in more of its beauty. 

Mount Washington Cog Railway

View of a train on the Mount Washington Cog Railway from the summit of Mount Washington, New Hampshire

A ride with ‘The Cog’ is like experiencing history as this train is the first train that climbs a mountain. This train climbs the summit of New England, approximately 3500 feet above the ground. To date, this railway is the second steepest railway in the world. 

That is something to experience! This is aside from the fact that every inch this train move is a scenic and breathtaking view that you can feast your eyes on as it passes the green valleys and mountains of New Hampshire to Vermont. 

White Pass and Yukon Route

Built-in 1898, this train ride is one exciting and adrenaline-rushing ride to have if you ever pass by Alaska. This train passes by a narrow-gauge railway on a very steep cliff.

Skagway, Alaska. The scenic White Pass & Yukon Route Railroad.

Experience a train ride that climbs up to 3000 feet above the ground as you pass by glaciers, waterfalls, and mountain lakes. The ride starts from a mine in Yukon then ends in Lake Bennett. There are other routes as well such as the Dead Horse gulch route or the Bridal Veil Falls route. 

Are you afraid of heights? Be warned.

Amtrak Empire Builder

Are you in Chicago and you need to get to Seattle in no rush? Hop into Amtrak Empire Builder and get to Seattle through a dreamy and relaxing ride.

Eastbound Empire Builder at Two Medicine Trestle East Glacier MT

Credit: Loco Steve

This train ride is a 46-hour ride of different landscapes and sceneries from Mississippi, Montana, the Gassman Coulee Trestle, the Glacier National Park, and the awesome Columbia River Gorge

This train ride is like retracing the steps of those who travelled to the west in the early years of American civilization.