Sacramento: California State Railroad Museum

The amazing California State Railroad Museum in Sacramento is a must-see for anyone with an interest in trains or American history.  About the museum, from the California State Parks website…

The California State Railroad Museum (CSRM) in Old Sacramento is the world-class tribute to the role of the “iron horse” in connecting California to the rest of the nation. Our museum features 21 lavishly restored locomotives and cars, some dating back to 1862. There is a full-scale diorama of an 1860s construction site high in the Sierra Nevada as well as a bridge elevated 24 feet above the museum floor.

For little ones, there is a large room upstairs filled with train tables for kids to play with.  This is truly a must-visit for anyone with a child in that love-of-train stage.

We’ve been visiting this museum regularly since my son was three.  He loves it here!  At six, it’s fun to see his interest move away from the Thomas the Train play tables and move into a fascination with the real historic trains themselves.  There are several trains for visitors to walk through and experience what train travel may have truly been like earlier in 1900s.  The museum provides tons of hands-on exploration that kids love.

Here are a few photos from our visit last week…

Interested in going?  The museum is located right in Old Sacramento.  Visit the California State Parks website for current hours, prices, and directions… California State Railroad Museum.  For even more information about the museum and for detailed information about riding the Excursion Train (Summer Rides, Polar Express, etc), visit the site for the California State Railroad Museum Foundation…


      1. really? I used to live on the south side, near the zoo. we used to go the zoo all the time when they allowed kids in for free…..cousins lived on Greenback lane and over across the american river…we used to swim in the american river all the time!


  1. We took the train from San Jose to Sacramento to visit this amazing museum when our boys were young and at the height of train enthusiasm. It’s an incredible place. I wish everyone could see it.

    Nice write up, NM.


    1. Thanks! It’s a great outing for those of us in the Bay Area, with trains departing from Oakland and Martinez (and, as you say, San Jose.. I didn’t know that!) that deliver us right next door to the California Train Museum. It was a brilliant design to build the museum right next door to the Amtrak station.


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