The 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, including our historic steam engine or one of our historic diesel engines. 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 one Sunday each month beginning in April through the end of the year. There are also special Halloween and Santa trains for the holidays. The first train departs the depot at 11 a.m. and the last at 4 p.m. You can choose to ride in passenger cars pulled by either a diesel locomotive or a steam engine. 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, eight mile round trip ride.
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 one Sunday each month from April through December.
Our steam locomotive makes two excursion each Ride Day, at 12:15 p.m. and 2:45 p.m. Built more than 70 years ago, our steam powered Locomotive 17; the Triangle’s only regularly-scheduled standard gauge steam engine, is still going strong.
Our diesel locomotive excursions depart from the depot at 11 a.m., 1:30 p.m. and 4 p.m. on monthly Ride Days.