Take a journey to the south rim of the Grand Canyon on the Grand Canyon Railway in Williams, Arizona. Williams is located along Interstate 40 and Old Route 66, 30 miles east of Flagstaff, and is often called the Gateway to the Grand Canyon. More than one million travelers visit Williams annually and many stay at a Williams Bed and Breakfast during their visit.
Grand Canyon Railway
633 N. Grand Canyon Blvd.
Williams, Arizona 86046
Travel back in time as you prepare to ride the Grand Canyon Railway into Grand Canyon National Park. The Grand Canyon Railway started in 1901, with the first trip to the Canyon's south rim on September 17 of that year. Train service to the Grand Canyon ran from 1901 until it was discontinued in 1968, due to the popularity of using automobiles for family vacations.
The Grand Canyon Railway began daily service again in 1989 and continues to operate on a daily basis. The train delivers an average of 200,000 visitors to the Grand Canyon each year. The Railway departs daily at 9:30 a.m. Ticket prices start at $70 for adults and $40 for children. Tickets should be purchased in advance by calling the Railway or visiting them online.
Within a short distance of your Williams Inn is the Williams Depot, where you will board the Railway for your trip to the Grand Canyon. The Williams Depot was built in 1908 by the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railroad, and originally served as the train depot for Williams and surrounding areas on the ATSF route from Chicago to Los Angeles. The Williams Depot originally housed several restaurants and shops as well as the train waiting area. Today you can visit the Grand Canyon Railway gift shop while waiting for the train. The Williams Depot is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and is considered to be the oldest poured concrete structure in Arizona.
Relax and enjoy the two hour and fifteen minute trip to the Grand Canyon from the Williams Depot. Four classes of train cars allow you to ride in style. The Coach Class features 1950s-era Budd and Pullman passenger cars. First Class passengers can snack while relaxing in a reclining seat. View wildlife and magnificent scenery from a glass-enclosed Observation Dome while enjoying a breakfast treat or afternoon snack. Luxury Parlor passengers have access to an open-air platform and private bar on the trip to and from the Grand Canyon.
Children under the age of 15 are not allowed in the Observation Dome or Luxury Parlor class cars.
Grand Canyon Depot
The Grand Canyon Depot, on the Canyon's south rim, is the northern stop for the Grand Canyon Railway. Construction of the log and wood depot was completed in 1910. You will depart the train here to explore the wonders of the Grand Canyon. Take a guided tour, or explore the sights on your own. The return trip to Williams and your Williams Bed and Breakfast departs from the Grand Canyon Depot at 3:30 p.m. daily.