New Hope Valley Railway (NHVR) is the Triangle’s Train. Children, parents, grandparents and others can enjoy a day together riding a real train behind one of our hard working locomotives. Learn about railroad history, watch the outdoor G-Scale garden railroad, visit the outdoor North Carolina Railroad Museum, or view equipment in the railroad yard. Don’t forget to stop at the gift shop for a souvenir.
The public is invited to visit this unique location in historic Bonsal, North Carolina, located off of U.S. Highway 1, just 30 minutes southwest of downtown Raleigh.
Trains generally operate a few days a month for various ride days and special events beginning in April through November. There are also special Halloween and Santa trains for the holidays. See the schedule for the next Ride Day and buy tickets here.
The train travels through scenic woods and over a trestle for an enjoyable one-hour adventure led by an all-volunteer staff who brings joy to riders of all ages. As we get to the end of the track, passengers watch the locomotive move from one end of the train to the other on a second set of tracks. Riders in the passenger cars will see the steam or diesel locomotive pass a few feet from them and can take photos and video. Then, the passenger cars reverse and head back to the station where the ride began. It’s a fascinating process and a fun ride for those who want to experience railroad history and heritage.
Enjoy food, snacks and drinks on-site in the rail yard during ride days provided by County Line Sweets food truck and their children’s hot dog wagon.
The New Hope Valley Railway is an all-volunteer, 501(c)(3) educational non-profit. 100% of ticket fare goes directly into the museum (ticket fare does not include applicable taxes and fees which are additional and do not go to the museum).
The original New Hope Valley Railway was built in 1904 to carry timber and other agricultural commodities such as cotton, corn and tobacco throughout North Carolina. Passenger trains were run to connect to other rail lines across the state. The original rail line ran through the New Hope Valley itself. This valley was flooded by the creation of Jordan Lake.
The current New Hope Valley Railway was chartered in 1983 by the East Carolina Chapter of the National Railway Historical Society. The organization first began its volunteer-operated train rides in the spring of 1984. Today, the Triangle’s Train rolls across its historic track through piney woods and over a trestle on an hour-long round trip from Bonsal to New Hill and back to the Bonsal depot.