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11 BEST Michigan Fall Color Train Tours for 2023

fall train ride - michigan fall train rides
A fall train ride in Michigan

Michigan Fall Train Rides: 11 Amazing Places for Fall Train Tour in Michigan

Now is the time for stunning fall foliage and fall train rides in Michigan, one of my favorite ways to celebrate fall in Michigan.

The vibrant colors of fall in Michigan can’t be missed and what better way to see them than with a fun-filled train ride through the Great Lake State? Steam trains might be a thing of the past in some places but not in Michigan!

Whether you’re looking for a autumn day trip to see Michigan at peak fall colors, fall color train tours are a perfect way to see Michigan’s fall color in action. With the added bonus of the special feeling that comes when traveling by train, it’s a perfect way to explore Michigan in style!

10 Best Scenic Fall Train Rides in Michigan

Where to Find Fall Color Train Tours in Michigan

From northern Michigan and the Upper Peninsula to southeast Michigan and south central Michigan, there’s a fall color train waiting to make your Michigan fall foliage tour memorable.

Read on for 11 of my favorite fall train rides in Michigan.

michigan steam train - best fall train rides in michigan

Coopersville & Marne Railway
306 Main St, Coopersville, MI 49404

The popular Coopersville and Marne Railway, located just north of Grand Rapids, is home to the famous Pumpkin Train, a beloved fall activity in west Michigan. Run completely by volunteers, this train ride moves through the part of West Michigan to offer a unique way to experience the beautiful country of Michigan. It’s the perfect way to enjoy Michigan’s natural beauty in autumn with family and friends.

The volunteers are trained on how to run the steam engine passenger trains. This particular train travels over bridges, creeks, and past farmland for the ideal Michigan fall experience.

The Pumpkin Train is a 90-minute excursion in a comfy passenger car, with entertainment by the Grand Pumpkin, Scarecrow, and Little Crow, which will delight all ages. At the end of the train trip, children can pick their own pumpkin from the pumpkin patch.

Michigan fall color map 2023

Crossroads Village & Huckleberry Railroad
6140 Bray Road, Flint, MI

Having been around for over a century, Huckleberry Railroad offers a simpler take on history. This line circles beautiful lakes and parks that allow for passengers to slow down and enjoy the beauty of nature.
You’ll take a 40-minute journey on a Baldwin steam locomotive along the shores of Mott Lake, down a stretch of the historic Pere Marquette roadbed, and back into the heart of Crossroads Village.

Fall means even more fun on the Huckleberry Railroad with a Halloween Ghost and Goodies Train Ride. Attend a magic show at Crossroads Village Colwood Opera House, trick-or-treat throughout the village, and then hop on the train for a ride on the famous Huckleberry Ghost Train Express. This is Michigan fall foliage train ride is not to be missed.

Upper tahquamenon falls- fall things to do in northern michigan
Tahquamenon Falls

Tahquamenon Wilderness Train Ride on the Toonerville Trolley
7195 Co Rd 381, Newberry, MI 49868

The Tahquamenon Falls are one of the many natural beauties of Michigan, and this wilderness train ride takes you right along the picturesque Tahquamenon River. The streams of water offer a great reflection of the bright fall colors in Michigan’s eastern Upper Peninsula.

The 6.5-hour Tahquamenon Falls Wilderness Excursion starts with a ride on the famous Toonerville Trolley, on one of Michigan’s narrow gauge railroads, followed by a two-hour Tahquamenon Falls Riverboat Tour. You’ll dock, hike and get a private view of the Tahquamenon Falls, the largest falls east of the Mississippi River. The journey then reverses, ending up at Soo Junction to complete the trip.

There’s a lot to see on this color train trip, with a stop at Riverside Park, where guests are invited to explore the trees and the banks of the roaring river before heading back to the main station.

Old Road Railroad Dinner Trains – Temporarily CLOSED
Blissfields Old Road Dinner Train, 301 US-223, Blissfield MI 49228

A murder mystery railroad dinner on the Blissfield Railroad is an experience that cannot be missed when visiting Michigan! Located just south of Ann Arbor, near Detroit, this is a really fun activity.

Experience the fun and creative nature of a dining entertainment train ride while riding through lively fall colors. Mature audiences can enjoy being immersed in a murder mystery scene while dining together with friends as the train guides your trip.

Southern Michigan Railroad
Clinton Station — 301 Bartlett St, Clinton, MI

Looking for a fall festival or simply a tour of fall colors? Southern Michigan Railroad Society in southcentrail Michigan offers these tours and more as fall kicks off in Clinton, Michigan. Not only do riders experience a relaxing ride through the countryside to see the alluring colors, but they also circle different lakes and other natural wonders and sites for a scenic view that everyone can enjoy!

You can choose from a Michigan fall color tour, a two-hour ride that includes Michigan apple cider and a stop at the Clinton Station, or the Clinton Fall Festival Train Rides, a 45-minute train ride to the Red Mill Pond Bridge and back to the station.

PRO-TIP: Plan your train trip for late September and stop by the Appleumpkin Festival in Tecumseh, just south of Clinton!

train tracks on a michigan fall color train ride

Little River Railroads in Coldwater
29 W. Park Ave., Coldwater, MI 49036

These steam train rides in southern Michigan are family-favorite, especially in fall when the Pumpkin Trains start running. The Little River Rail Road offers different opportunities to enjoy a historical steam train ride through the south of Michigan.

With a reprieve in Quincy, MI to stretch your legs, you can watch as the steam engine is switched to the opposite side of the train for the return trip. The LIttle River Railroads fall color tours last about an hour and and half, and are very popular, be sure to get our tickets as soon as you can!

Michigan Transit Museum in Mount Clemens
24201 Henry B Joy Blvd, Charter Twp of Clinton, MI 48036

Trick-or-Treat on one of the train rides run by the Michigan Transit Museum. Mount Clemens also offers the chance to learn about great locomotives and the history of trains. Ride the rails through history as you experience the joy of a historical train ride or a walk through the information-filled historical museum.

12 Top Michigan Train Rides

Greenfield Village
20900 Oakwood Boulevard, Dearborn, MI 48124-5029

Weiser Railroad at Greenfield Village near Detroit offers you the chance to ride on one of the oldest steam engines around. Enjoy a day of fun at Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield village learning about different automobiles, historic machines, and of course, steam engines!

Lake Linden and Torch Lake Railroad
Houghton County Historical Society, 53102 Hwy M-26 PO Box 127, Lake Linden, MI 49945

Operated by the Houghton County Historical Society in Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula, you can take scenic ride a-on the almost ½ mile loop around the museum campus. Michigan’s Upper Peninsula is stunning the fall, when the whole area is lit up with the brilliant autumn colors. Don’t miss this one.

Tracks on a michigan fall color Train ride

Pere Marquette Steam Railroad Institute
405 S Washington St, Owosso, MI 48867

Fall scenic train rides on the Polar Express? That’s right: you can take a Michigan fall color train tour on this very train. The Steam Railroad Institute, home of the Christmas train (aka “the Polar Express”), also offers fall scenic train rides.

Per Pure Michigan, “The Steam Railroading Institute (SRI) offers a variety of train rides specifically for fall color viewing.”

These excursions leave from a variety of cities, with trips through places such as the Petoskey countryside or downtown Cadillac train ride options include all day or just an hour long. If you enjoyed your fall color tour, return to SRI in the winter for their North Pole Express ride, which leaves from Owosso, Michigan in November and December. With their iconic Pere Marquette 1225 steam locomotive in the lead, this ride will be one to remember as you are immersed in the nostalgia and wonder of holiday cheer.”

Fort Wayne Railroad

The Indiana Rail Experience is a partnership between the Fort Wayne Historical Society and the Indiana Northeastern Railroad Company, and offers excursions into southeast Michigan on tour train. The Michigan Fall Color Train Tour ia a steam and diesel excursion departing Hillsdale, MI for Angola, IN.

These all-day excursions will treat passengers to a scenic ride aboard a vintage passenger train featuring historic steam locomotive no. 765 leading one direction of the trip.

Departing downtown Hillsdale, Michigan at 9:30 AM, the train will travel south toward Angola, Indiana for a 3-hour layover where guests can enjoy shopping, antique stores, and lunch on their own in a variety of area restaurants and food trucks near the campus of Trine University.

With a scheduled departure from Angola at 3:00 PM, the train will arrive back at its origin at approximately 6:00 PM

Plan to see Michigan’s fall colors in the UP with our complete guide to leaf peeping in the U.P.!

More Fall Things to Do in Michigan

While fall in Michigan means apple cider mills, pumpkin patches, and fall festivals, there are many ways to experience the beauty of autumn in Michigan. Find more fall activities in Michigan in our Michigan Fall Fun Guide.

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About the Author-
Content Writer Anna is currently a fourth-year student at Grand Valley State University studying Writing and Psychology. She has been writing for years and hopes to continue writing for many years as a creative outlet and potential career. Currently, she is working on finishing her Bachelor of Arts degree and figuring out what career field she wants to enter after graduation in the spring of 2023.