Our Steam Train & Riverboat Excursion operates May through October. In addition, we’ve got unique events and programs planned year round!
Memorial Day Picnic – May 29 • 11:30 a.m -2:30 p.m.
Essex Steam Train is hosting a day of family fun honoring Connecticut’s military this Memorial Day at our All-American Picnic!
Sunset, Cigars & Whiskey Cruise – May 25 (Sold out) and June 15 (New date added)
A nostalgic ride while enjoying premium whiskeys, cigars, cuisine with your fellow cigar and whiskey enthusiasts.
Music on the Riverboat – June 23, July 28 and August 25
What could be more enjoyable than live music while sailing down the Connecticut River and watching a gorgeous sunset? NOTHING! And that’s why we’re offering three nights of music on The Becky Thatcher Riverboat.
Essex Clipper Dinner Train – May – October
An elegant four-course meal served in beautifully restored 1920’s Pullman diners, pulled by a vintage diesel locomotive.
Steam Train & Riverboat Lunch Excursion – Weekday Operation, June – October
Enjoy a 3-course lunch aboard restored 1920’s Pullman dining cars as part of a 3.75 hour lunch, train and riverboat sightseeing excursion.
Passengers from the Past – Weekends in June
The country’s most renowned character actors will personify legendary figures, including the Gillettes, Abraham Lincoln, Babe Ruth, & Mark Twain. No additional charge.
Father’s Day, Family Weekend – June 17 and 18
Enjoy a pancake breakfast with Dad, mingle with Babe Ruth, meet Chew Chew — one of the Hartford Yard Goat’s mascots and take home a complimentary professional photograph of your family.
Sunset Cruise – Friday & Saturday Evenings, end-June – September
A spectacular train and riverboat ride on the Connecticut River on Friday evenings. Swallow cruises in September and October!
Saybrook Special – First operating weekend, May – October
Board the 10:00 am Saybrook Special for a unique journey along the railroad from Essex to Old Saybrook, free for 11:00 am passengers.
Caboose Weekends – First operating weekend, May – October
Ride the Friends of the Valley Railroad caboose, extra charge donated to the Friends.
Swallow Cruise – Friday and Saturday Evenings, September
Take the Becky Thatcher to a spectacular natural phenomenon as hundreds of thousands of Tree Swallows swarm as a beautifully choreographed flock over Goose Island each evening at sunset.
North Pole Express – Weekends and Weekdays, mid-November – December
Board our locomotive-powered sleigh…for a magical nighttime journey to the North Pole.
Santa Special – Weekends from Black Friday – December
A daytime holiday train ride, with special guests Santa and Mrs. Claus, and other North Pole visitors.
Eagle Flyer – February
A 2½-hour eco-excursion, with local station stops in Deep River, Chester, Eagle Landing State Park and Haddam.
Hand on the Throttle – Click for active dates
A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to learn about and actually operate a full size steam locomotive.
Day Out with Thomas – End-April / Beginning-May
A real live train ride with Thomas the Tank Engine, plus tons of kid-friendly activities.
Day Out with Mom – May
A special outing for the special women in our lives. Treat Mom to a memorable Steam Train and Riverboat ride, complete with a complimentary potted Marigold plant for Mom to enjoy all summer long!
Neighbor Appreciation Weekend – May
Neighbor Appreciation weekend includes free Steam Train and Riverboat rides (coach seating) for residents in 6 towns along the Valley Railroad’s operating line – – Essex, Deep River, Chester, Haddam, East Haddam and Old Saybrook.