Connecticut/New Hampshire/Massachusetts
An Epic Railroad Journey: New England History Comes to Life
From the Essex Steam Train in Connecticut to the Cog Railway up New Hampshire’s Mount Washington, discover the history and charm of New England’s railroads.
Rating (4.91)
Program No. 12310RJ
6 days
Starts at
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6 days
5 nights
15 meals
6 B 4 L 5 D
Getting There
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Arrival/Check-in / Registration & Orientation/Welcome Dinner
Windsor Locks, CT
Hilton Garden Inn Hartford North/Bradley Int'l Airport

Afternoon: Hotel Check-in: Available from 3 p.m. Program Registration: 3:00-5:00p.m. After you have your room assignment, come over to the Road Scholar table in the main lobby to register with the program staff, to get your welcome packet containing your name-tag, up-to-date schedule and other important information, and to confirm the time and location of the Orientation session. If you arrive later than 5 p.m., please ask for your packet at the front desk when you check in.

Dinner: Buffet dinner served at the hotel this evening.

Evening: Following dinner we will have our orientation, during which the Group Leader will greet everyone and lead introductions. We will also review the program theme, the up-to-date daily schedule and any changes, discuss safety guidelines, emergency procedures, roles and responsibilities, and answer any questions you may have. Indicated times are approximate; program activities and schedules may need to change due to local circumstances. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding. Scheduled free time is set aside for your personal independent exploration. The Group Leader will often be available during free time to accompany informal excursions, activities, or meals that have been excluded from the program cost. You are welcome to join if you like, with any associated costs on your own.

Essex Steam Train and Riverboat / Connecticut Trolley Museum
Windsor Locks, CT
Hilton Garden Inn Hartford North/Bradley Int'l Airport

Activity note: Some walking on uneven ground, boarding motorcoach a few times, boarding train and riverboat.

Breakfast: At the hotel, a buffet that includes entrées, fruit, cereal, juice and coffee.

Morning: This morning we travel to the Essex Steam train and Riverboat. The Essex Steam Train & Riverboat's offer us a 2½-hour journey begins at the historic 1892 Essex Station for a 12-mile, historically narrated round-trip into the heart of the unspoiled Connecticut River Valley - designated "one of the last great places on earth" by the Nature Conservancy. Pulled by a steam locomotive with vintage coaches at 20 mph through the quintessential New England towns of Deep River and Chester. At Deep River Landing, passengers are escorted onto the Becky Thatcher riverboat for a cruise along the Connecticut River. The deep water, coves, inlets, marshes, wildlife, and rocky shoreline are all at once, simply breathtaking! Just as impressive are the historic sights including Gillette Castle, Goodspeed Opera House, and the Haddam Swing Bridge. Upon Becky's return to Deep River Landing, the steam train welcomes passengers for the return trip back to Essex Station.

Lunch: A box lunch will be served on the boat portion of our excursion. There will be an assortment of sandwiches and drinks to choose from along the journey.

Afternoon: This afternoon we travel to the Connecticut Trolley Museum for a private presentation. This museum contains a variety of trolley cars as well as exhibits on the societal impact of the “Trolley Era.” We will then take a ride on one of the trolley cars that has been returned to service.

Dinner: At a local restaurant.

Evening: This evening we will be joined at the hotel by a member of the Connecticut Historical Society.

White River Junction/Hotel Coolidge/Lake Winni Railroad
Lincoln, NH
Indian Head Resort

Activity note: Travel by motorcoach from CT to New Hampshire. Getting on and off coach on a few occasions.

Breakfast: At the hotel

Morning: Check-out of hotel and board our motor coach for our trip up the Connecticut River Valley to White River Junction. Here we meet with a local historian who will speak to us about local railroad history.

Lunch: Lunch is served at the historic Hotel Coolidge in White River Junction, Vermont, where we will also have a private historical presentation by the hotel’s owner. The hotel building previously resided in Enfield, NH, and was moved to White River Junction in 1849 in response to the need for lodging nearby the newly opened railroad. It was renamed in 1924 after Colonel John Calvin Coolidge, a frequent guest, close friend of the owner, and President Coolidge’s father.

Afternoon: Travel to Meredith, NH where we meet with a local railroad historian who will speak to us about the Lake Winnipesaukee Railroad prior to boarding the train for a scenic narrated ride along the lake. After the ride we will head to the hotel to check in.

Dinner: Dinner is included at the resort this evening. You will have a choice of menu this evening.

Evening: Light entertainment is in the lounge this evening.

Conway Scenic Railroad/Flying Yankee/Cafe Lafayette
Lincoln, NH
Indian Head Resort

Activity note: Travel through some high elevations, getting on and off trains.

Breakfast: At the hotel, a deluxe Continental breakfast buffet that includes eggs, waffles, fruit, yogurt, pastries, cereal, juice and coffee.

Morning: Travel over the Kancamagus highway to North Conway, where we will board the Conway Scenic Railroad to take a ride through Crawford Notch. Historian Ben English joins us on our trip and presents a lecture and private narrative of our journey.

Lunch: A box lunch is served on the train to Crawford Notch which includes a choice of sandwich, pasta salad, a cookie and a drink.

Afternoon: Travel via coach to the base of Mount Washington, the tallest mountain in New England, where we will take an exciting ride aboard the Mount Washington Cog Railway up to the summit. We will visit the Marshfield Base Station as well as the weather observatory.

Dinner: Dinner is served aboard the Café Lafayette Dinner Train, where we will have an exceptional dining experience. Dine on a four-course gourmet meal while watching the ever changing scenery of the Pemigewasset River and surrounding area. The view continues on into the night as halogen lights

Evening: Evening entertainment in the lounge following dinner.

Mount Washington Cog Railway/Cog Museum
Lincoln, NH
Indian Head Resort

Activity note: Today we will visit the summit of Mount Washington, which has an elevation of about 6,300 ft. The summit has quite extreme and rapidly changing weather conditions throughout the year, so please plan and dress accordingly. We will travel by motorcoach to each destination.

Breakfast: At the hotel

Morning: This morning we travel to Mount Washington. Today we will visit the summit of Mount Washington, which has an elevation of about 6,300 ft. The summit has quite extreme and rapidly changing weather conditions throughout the year, so please plan and dress accordingly. We will travel by motorcoach to each destination.

Lunch: Following our visit to the Mount Washington Cog Railroad we travel to the historic Mount Washington Hotel where we enjoy a spectacular lunch.

Afternoon: This afternoon we enjoy guided exploration of this historic property. Continue our ride back to the hotel with our on board historian.

Dinner: A Buffet Dinner is served at the hotel this evening.

Evening: At leisure.

Breakfast before departure
Lincoln, NH

Activity note: Boarding of coach. Arrival at the BWI Airport between 11:30 AM - 12:00 PM

Breakfast: At the hotel, and includes entrees, juice, coffee, cereal, and fruit.

Morning: Travel provided to Bradley International Airport as well as our original hotel in Windsor Locks. We will arrive at the airport between 11:30 a.m. and 12:00 p.m., and to the hotel between 12:00 and 12:30 p.m. PLEASE DO NOT BOOK ANY FLIGHTS PRIOR TO 2:00 PM. This concludes our program. We will provide transportation information for buses, Amtrak (two blocks away), and three major airports (accessible by shuttles). We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Please join our Facebook page and share photos of your program. Visit us at www.facebook.com/rsadventures. Best wishes for all your journeys!

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