This year, Delaware River Train Excursions in Philipsburg is organizing for the first time the Dinosaur Train rides. So I took my 3-year old son who loves the PBS show, and enjoyed an awesome experience. Boarding is at 99 Elizabeth St, Philipsburg NJ, on a steam train with old restored cars. It rides for about 20-25 minutes along the Delaware, with scenic views of the river on one side, and steep cliffs or lush forests on the other. The train was decorated with orange & green balloons, and tunes from the TV show played all the time, making it an enjoyable experience for the kids.
The ride ended at the Susquehanna Mine station, where we got off the train, and had one hour to enjoy the Nature Trackers Activity Area until the next train came to take us back (you could stay longer, since return trips were not booked by the hour). There were lots of activities for kids, all included in the ticket price: An inflatable obstacle course, face painting and temporary tattoos, a sandbox area where kids could dig for dinosaur bones, armed with shovels and brushes, a dinosaur show and more. There was also a snack bar and a small shopping area for show-related products.
A big attraction was the corn maze, where you’d follow some big dinosaur tracks, and around the corners big inflatable dinosaurs would pop out, pretty much all the beloved Dinosaur Train characters: Buddy, Tiny, Ms Pteranodon, the Conductor, and more. Another cool place was the “mine”, where you could see the mine car coming out of the shaft, get a bag of sand, and then go on to filter it and find the hidden fossils and dinosaur bones inside. The kids also loved this hands-on activity, and collected bags on fossils.
Of course, you couldn’t miss Buddy, the show’s main character, who’d willingly take pictures with everybody (personal cameras allowed, so if you had a good one you didn’t have to buy the official photos). And then, with a loud whistle, the steam train returned, and we boarded for the trip back to Philipsburg.
My kid totally loved the trip, and by the look on their faces, all the other kids did too. The price is really affordable ($25 adults, $19 children), and the entire experience takes 2 hours (50-55 minutes on the train, an hour at the activity center). There are a lot of things to do, and if all kids are like mine, the train trip by itself makes it all worth it. There are more rides on the upcoming weekend, August 24-25, 2013, every hour starting from 10am, and if you’d like to go it’s better to reserve your tickets online early, since certain times can sell out early. For more photos, check out our Facebook album.
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