When you come to visit the Pennsylvania Dutch Country, you certainly will hear about Strasburg, a small town of 2,800 people. The historic Old Town remains nearly unchanged since it has been founded in the early 1700s. While strolling through the streets of Strasburg, you still can feel the charm of the old times and you can hear the clip-clop of the Amish horses and buggies.
The small town served as a trading center and stage coach on the road between Lancaster and Philadelphia. Today, Strasburg is a popular tourist destination with cozy Bed & Breakfasts, one of the greatest outlet malls of the state and the Sight & Sound Theatre with impressive productions of Bible stories.
About 1 ½ miles east of Strasburg on route 741, you find the Strasburg Railroad. The historic railroad with coal-burning steam trains was established in 1832 and is considered the oldest still operating railroad company in the United States under its original charter of June 9, 1832. For more than hundred years it was an important part of the transportation network in the area carrying people and freight. Since the 1950s visitors can make roundtrips between Strasburg and Paradise and enjoy the beautiful country with Amish farms.
The tours take about 45 minutes and you can choose between different categories:
- President’s Car
This fully airconditioned coach provides the most comfortable way of travelling. ”The Reading”, as it is was commonly known, is a business car. Equipped with comfortable furniture and handcrafted woodwork, this car was used by the presidents of the Philadelphia and Reading Railroad Company.
- First Class Parlor
This luxuriant equipped car provides best comfort for the travellers. Drinks and snack are available at the bar.
With the standard coaches you travel at best value. They are beautifully restored and equipped with Victorian furniture. On cold days these cars are heated with potbelly stoves.
- Open Air
When the weather is nice, you can enjoy the open-air view of the countryside and the Amish farms .
President’s Car „The Reading“
First Class Parlor
When returning to the station, you can test your strength with a „pump car“ or you take a ride with the miniature steam train. And, of course, you are invited to visit the shop where you can buy lots of souvenirs.
In addition to the regular roundtrips at the Strasburg Railroad there are several events during the year:
- Wine & Cheese Train April to November
- The Great Train Robbery
- Day Out with Thomas
- Trains and Troops
- Santa’s Paradise Express November & December
Get more information on the website of The Strasburg Railroad.
Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania
On the opposite side of the road is the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania. This museum hosts one of the most important collections of historic railroad artifacts in the world. It is documenting the broad impact of the railroad on our society.
- displays a collection of over 100 locomotives and cars from the mid 19th and 20th century including the priceless Pennsylvania Railroad Historical Collection.
- has restored many of the unique survivors to the original appearance.
- provides educational seminars for all ages and conducts tours.
For more informationen please refer to the website of the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania