Nantahala Gorge Excursion

Fontana View

Take a train ride along side the beautiful Nantahala River on our Nantahala Gorge Excursion! Departing from Bryson City, this 4½ hour roundtrip excursion carries you 44 miles to the Nantahala Gorge and back again arriving at our Bryson City Depot.

Ride this excursion via Steam or Diesel locomotive power!

About This Trip


Enjoy the sights and sounds of the Great Smoky Mountains while traveling along the Tennessee and Nantahala (nan-tuh-HAY-luh) River.

The historic trellis bridge Fontana Trestle takes you across Fontana Lake and into the beautiful Nantahala Gorge. Onboard dining is available in First Class Seating and selecting from our  First Class Dinning menu options OR you can pre-purchase a box lunch option to make this an amazing unique moving dining experience. Arrive at our layover destination in the heart of the Nantahala Gorge for a one-hour layover where you can relax by the river or enjoy sightseeing!

We are operating under all current COVID-19 safety guidelines and ask that you follow all protocols. Find the information HERE! *Please be aware dining options are currently not available at your layover destination. You are advised to enjoy onboard dining by selecting our First Class dinning option or pre-purchasing a box lunch meal option along with your train tickets.*

Itinerary

30m before departure Boarding begins at Bryson City Depot
See schedule for departure time Depart Bryson City, NC
1h 45m Reach top of the line
2h 00m Begin return
2h 30m—3h 30m Layover
3h 30m Depart Layover
4h 30m Arrive at Bryson City Depot
Time from Departure Activity

*During the month of December Nantahala Gorge Winter Trains, all layovers will be 30mins. Given the nature of railroading, durations are approximate and subject to change without notice.

Classes of Service

Adult First Class

Diesel $99 ($102 October) Not Permitted
Steam $113 ($117 October) Not Permitted
Locomotive Adult (21+ Only) Under 21

First Class with dining features assigned seating at a dining table in a climate controlled car with large picture windows, and are served a meal by the car’s attendant. Each couple receives a souvenir tote bag, and everyone receives a souvenir travel mug with free refills of soda, coffee, and iced tea all day.
Limited bar service available.

Premium Open Air Gondola

Diesel $83 ($87 October) Not Permitted
Steam $95 ($99 October) Not Permitted
Locomotive Adult (21+ Only) Under 21

Premium Open Air Gondola with dining features assigned seating in a car with unobstructed views, half-height walls, and a roof above to protect passengers from the elements. Adults (21+) are served a meal by the car’s attendant. Each couple receives a souvenir tote bag (1 per couple). Everyone receives a souvenir travel mug with free refills of soda, coffee, and iced tea all day. When we reach the end of the line, we will invite all guests in this class to switch sides with their neighbors so that everyone will have the opportunity to take pictures from a new perspective on the opposite side of the train.
Add an official Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Sweatshirt Blanket to your reservation for just $29.99! At 54″ x 84″ it’s the perfect size for two to keep warm during our cool mornings.
Limited bar service available.

Family First Class NOT AVAILABLE

Diesel N/A N/A N/A
Steam N/A N/A N/A
Locomotive Adult (13+) Child (2-12) Infant (0-23 Months)

When operating, Family First Class features assigned seating at a dining table in a climate controlled car with large picture windows. Adults (13+) and children (2-12) are served a meal by the car’s attendant. Each adult couple receives souvenir tote bags. Everyone aged 2 years old on up receives a souvenir travel mug with free refills of pop, coffee, and iced tea all day. And, children can have lunch with the conductor! This special addition allows for one of our conductors to accompany and interact with fans of all ages for the entire trip! Limited bar service available.

Crown Class

Diesel $72 ($76 October) $42 ($42 October) $10
Steam $85 ($89 October) $45 ($45 October) $12
Locomotive Adult (13+) Child (2-12) Infant (0-23 Months)

Crown Class features assigned seating in a climate controlled car with large picture windows. Everyone over the age of 2 years old receives a souvenir tumbler with free refills of soda, coffee, and iced tea all day! When we reach the end of the line, we will invite all guests in this class to switch sides with their neighbors so that everyone will have the opportunity to take pictures from a new perspective on the opposite side of the train.
Preorder your boxed lunch to enjoy onboard dining! Beer and wine available.

Coach Class

Diesel $56 ($59 October) $32 ($32 October) Complimentary
Steam $65 ($67 October) $40 ($40 October) Complimentary
Locomotive Adult (13+) Child (2-12) Infant (0-23 Months)

Coach Class features open seating in an enclosed car, windows that can be opened for fresh air and taking photos, and are heated and have ceiling fans. When we reach the end of the line, we will invite all guests in this class to switch sides with their neighbors so that everyone will have the opportunity to take pictures from a new perspective on the opposite side of the train.
Preorder your boxed lunch to enjoy onboard dining!

Open Air Gondola

Diesel $56 ($59 October) $32 ($32 October) Complimentary
Steam $65 ($67 October) $40 ($40 October) Complimentary
Locomotive Adult (13+) Child (2-12) Infant (0-23 Months)

Open Air Gondolas feature open seating in a car with unobstructed views, half-height walls, and a roof above to protect passengers from the elements. When we reach the end of the line, we will invite all guests in this class to switch sides with their neighbors so that everyone will have the opportunity to take pictures from a new perspective on the opposite side of the train.
Add an official Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Sweatshirt Blanket to your reservation for just $29.99! At 54″ x 84″ it’s the perfect size for two to keep warm during our cool mornings.
Preorder your boxed lunch to enjoy onboard dining!

Class Comparison

Classes of Service Table
Ameneties First Class Premium Open Air Gondola Family First Class Crown Class Coach Class Open Air Gondola
Meal Included
Lunch Available
Restrooms Available
Heat
Air Conditioning
Assigned Seating
Souvenir Travel Mug
Large Picture Windows
Souvenir Tote Bag
Windows Open/Close
Ceiling Fans
Ideal for Photography
Outward Facing Seats
Padded Seats

How to Purchase

You can purchase your tickets online or call our reservations department at (800) 872-4681. No matter how you purchase tickets, they’ll be waiting at will call.
Or, you can purchase your tickets the day of in the Bryson City Depot.
See Classes of Service for the various class descriptions and pricing.

Where to Go

All departures are from the Bryson City Depot in Bryson City, NC.
Entrance to the parking lot is located at:

45 Mitchell Street
Bryson City, NC 28713

Plan on being here by 1 hour before your departure.

*This schedule is subject to change
at any time.*

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
1
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am 10:30 am
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am @ Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Depot
Jun 1 @ 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
Book now
2
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am 10:30 am
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am @ Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Depot
Jun 2 @ 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
Book now
7
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am 10:30 am
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am @ Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Depot
Jun 7 @ 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
Book now
8
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am 10:30 am
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am @ Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Depot
Jun 8 @ 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
Book now
9
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am 10:30 am
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am @ Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Depot
Jun 9 @ 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
Book now
10
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am 10:30 am
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am @ Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Depot
Jun 10 @ 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
Book now
11
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am 10:30 am
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am @ Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Depot
Jun 11 @ 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
Book now
12
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am 10:30 am
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am @ Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Depot
Jun 12 @ 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
Book now
13
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am 10:30 am
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am @ Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Depot
Jun 13 @ 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
Book now
14
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am 10:30 am
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am @ Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Depot
Jun 14 @ 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
Book now
15
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am 10:30 am
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am @ Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Depot
Jun 15 @ 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
Book now
16
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am 10:30 am
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am @ Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Depot
Jun 16 @ 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
Book now
21
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am 10:30 am
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am @ Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Depot
Jun 21 @ 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
Book now
22
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am 10:30 am
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am @ Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Depot
Jun 22 @ 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
Book now
23
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am 10:30 am
Nantahala Gorge (Diesel) 10:30am @ Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Depot
Jun 23 @ 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
Book now

Other excursions and/or events are available.

*This schedule is subject to change at any time*
Ticket fares subject to 7% Historic Preservation Fee. Schedules, fares, motive power, equipment, seat selection, and meals are subject to change without notice. We guarantee the class of service you select. You will be notified if a change in schedule or motive power affects your reservation. Payment in full at booking by major credit card is required to finalize a reservation. You may cancel your reservation in full or in part and receive a refund less a $14.00 fee per adult ticket and $6.00 fee per child ticket as late as 48 hours before departure. Within 48 hours of the departure the reservation becomes nonrefundable. You may reschedule any time prior to your originally scheduled departure with a $7.00 fee per ticket for another date within the same calendar year. You may not reschedule a reservation after the scheduled departure.

You agree that GSMR General Excursions and Events for which you purchased tickets and/or attended is a public event, that your appearance and actions inside and outside the venue where the Excursion/Event occurs are public in nature, and that you have no expectation of privacy with regard to your actions or conduct at the Event. You hereby irrevocably grant permission to the host railroad, licensor, sponsor(s) and/or their assigns to use, copy, display, distribute, exhibit and utilize your name, image, digital image, likeness, acts, poses, voice, appearance, movements and statements in any live or recorded audio, video or photographic display or other transmission, exhibition, publication or reproduction of same, including at the Excursion/ Event (regardless of whether before, during or after the Excursion/ Event) for any purpose, in any manner, in any medium or context now known or hereafter developed without further authorization from or any compensation to you or anyone acting or entitled to act on your Behalf.