The Virginia Scenic Railway Is Ready To Roll

Monday, August 8, 2022


STAUNTON, VA, July 25, 2022 — The Buckingham Branch Railroad is pleased to announce the launch of the Virginia Scenic Railway, the Commonwealth’s only regularly scheduled sightseeing tourist train.

Starting on August 4th, the Virginia Scenic Railway will offer twice-daily sightseeing excursions from Staunton through the legendary Shenandoah Valley — complete with tabletop meal service in a beautifully modernized passenger car.

“We are launching this new service because we see this as a way to share our love for the railroad and Virginia’s railroad heritage with all the people who love trains,” said Steve Powell, president of the Buckingham Branch Railroad.

There will be two daily departures:

  • The BLUE RIDGE FLYER goes east from Staunton through the Blue Ridge Mountains. On the way, you’ll pass by Staunton and Waynesboro before ascending roughly 1,000 feet up to Afton Mountain where you’ll experience the thrill of roaring through the Blue Ridge Tunnel before turning around in Ivy. 3:30 pm departure, Thursday through Sunday.
  • The ALLEGHANY SPECIAL heads west from Staunton’s historic downtown, passing through the rural landscape and working farms of western Virginia as you wind your way towards the George Washington and Jefferson National Forest before turning around in Goshen for the trip back to Staunton. 10:30 am departure, Thursday through Sunday.

All rides are three-hour round trips, and trains depart from the Amtrak station in historic Staunton, Virginia. Excursions will be available every Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Advance reservations are required.

“The Virginia Passenger Rail Authority would like to congratulate the Buckingham Branch Railroad on the launch of their new venture, the Virginia Scenic Railway,” said DJ Stadtler, executive director of VPRA. “This scenic railway will give Virginians the opportunity to see the beauty of our state from a train window rather than from their cars. Whether for excursions or day-to-day travel, rail works for Virginia!”

“This will be the first regularly-scheduled railroad passenger excursion program in Virginia in at least the last 30 years. Right now, Virginians have to travel to West Virginia, North Carolina, Maryland, or Pennsylvania if they want to ride an excursion train. Starting in August, train lovers from all over the country to come to Virginia to ride our one-of-a-kind excursion train,” said Powell.

“We are thrilled to welcome this special new travel experience to Virginia, which is sure to delight train lovers and travel enthusiasts alike,” said Rita McClenny, president and CEO of Virginia Tourism Corporation. “The Virginia Scenic Railway will be Virginia’s only regularly-scheduled tourist train, and will provide travelers with an extraordinary new way to explore the Commonwealth. These beautifully designed passenger cars evoke 1940s glamour and nostalgia while boasting all of the modern amenities travelers have come to expect. With stunning views of the Allegheny and Blue Ridge Mountains, spectacular sightseeing opportunities, and delicious tabletop meal service, this is truly an enchanting new way to discover why Virginia is for Lovers.”

Officials say additional routes may be added in the future, as well as more passenger equipment with different seating arrangements, and shorter seasonal excursions for younger train fans.

About the Virginia Scenic Railway
The Virginia Scenic Railway is owned and operated by the Buckingham Branch Railroad, which was established in 1988. Now with four divisions and 280 miles of track, the Buckingham Branch is the largest short line railroad in Virginia. To learn more, visit and

About Virginia Tourism Corporation
The Virginia Tourism Corporation is the state agency charged with marketing the Commonwealth as a premier travel and film destination, to stimulate Virginia’s economy and enhance the quality of life of all Virginians.

About Virginia Passenger Rail Authority
The Virginia Passenger Rail Authority was established in 2020 to promote, sustain, and expand the availability of passenger and commuter rail service in the Commonwealth.


Steve Powell, President, Buckingham Branch Railroad
(434) 547-8301

Kathy Moore, Principal, Moore Public Relations

Get Your Ticket To Ride

Aboard the Virginia Scenic Railway, you’ll get a front-row seat to some of Virginia’s prettiest views, including the legendary Shenandoah Valley and the Blue Ridge Mountains. Depending on the excursion you choose, you’ll roar through tunnels, speed over bridges, race past scenic fields and forests, and climb over mountains.