The Disneyland Railroad has been a popular Disneyland feature since the resort opened in 1955. A narrow gauge railroad, it winds its way around Disneyland Park. Old fashioned locomotives that are environmentally friendly are used to execute the route, and there is plenty to see along the way. Should you make a full loop on the Disneyland Railway, as the railroad is also known, the trip will take approximately twenty minutes. Four stops are made along the way, so the Disneyland Railroad can also be used to get from one part of Disneyland Park to another. Regardless of your intentions, you don't have to pay extra to hitch a ride.
The main station for the Disneyland Railroad can be found above the Disneyland Park entrance in the Main Street USA area. In fact, it's the first thing that you will see upon entering the park through the main gates. From the Main Street station, the trains head west, and after passing over part of the popular Pirates of the Caribbean ride, they make their next stop in the New Orleans Square area.
After stopping at the New Orleans Square station, the Disneyland Railroad cars travel past the exterior of the Haunted Mansion ride before passing through part of the Splash Mountain ride. Next is a trip over the Critter Country area, and from there, it's on to the depot at Mickey's Toontown area. Between Critter Country and Mickey's Toontown, the sights include wildlife scenes and a frontier-style cabin that is situated on an island known as Tom Sawyer's Island.
The last station that the Disneyland Railway trains visit before returning back to Main Street USA is the Tomorrowland station. Keeping in line with the overall theme of the Tomorrowland area, this station has a futuristic look to it. As you exit the Tomorrowland station on the Disneyland Railway, you might take notice of the Innoventions building. This building is full of interactive exhibits that cater to kids and adults alike. After the Disneyland Railroad trains pass by the Innoventions building, the trip gets even more interesting. You'll eventually pass through two dioramas before arriving at the Main Street station. One of these dioramas depicts the Grand Canyon, while the other represents a prehistoric world where dinosaurs reign supreme.
The Disneyland Railway operates on a daily basis, though it tends to shut down when special events are going on. The first train departs from the Main Street USA station as soon as the park opens, with the final train of the day pulling into the same station near closing time. On most days, three separate trains are used, though a fourth can be employed as needed. There are five total trains. All run on bio-diesel fuel, so you won't have to worry about the environmental implications as you travel from station to station. This is just one more reason to catch a ride on the fun and scenic Disneyland Railroad.
Image: armadillo444 (flickr)