Balboa Park Miniature Railroad

Train enthusiasts from 1 to 99 will enjoy riding the Balboa Park Miniature Railroad just outside the entrance to the San Diego Zoo.

The rare G-16 one-fifth scale miniature train set carries passengers in open coaches on a brief three-minute long ride that winds through a 4-acre parcel of Balboa Park. You may encounter replicas of some of the critters you’ll see in the zoo, and you’ll pass near the century-old Balboa Park Carousel.

The small depot/ticket station also sells a few souvenirs such as hats, whistles, water, and cookies. Note that the train generally only operates on weekends and school holidays most of the year, but operates daily during the summer months.

If you’d like to experience even more railroads in Balboa Park, then make your way over to the San Diego Model Railroad Museum for some truly inspiring model railroads on a scale that you’ll rarely see anywhere else.

If you want a short but fun ride through part of Balboa Park, explore the Balboa Park Miniature Railroad.

What You Need To Know

Location: 1800 Zoo Place, San Diego, CA 92101


Regular hours: Sat. Sun. (and school holidays), 11:00am. – 4:30pm.

Summer Hours: Daily, 11am – 6:30pm

Cost: $3.00 per person

Phone: (619) 239-4748


Tips: Parking in Balboa Park is always a challenge. You can park in the Zoo parking lot and walk to the railroad from it. There are restrooms just outside the Zoo entrance or in the Spanish Village Art Center.


Click to see full-sized photos.

Visited: 29 January 2017

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