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     Grand Canyon Railway is a passenger railroad operation that transports passengers from Williams, Arizona, to the South Rim of Grand Canyon National Park. The line, originally completed in 1901 by the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway, made its first run on September 17 of that year. As was a common practice of railway companies of that era, in order to better accommodate tourists the railway constructed the El Tovar Hotel, which was located just twenty feet from the rim of the Canyon and opened in January of 1905. Due to competition with visitors travelling to the Grand Canyon via automobile, Santa Fe closed its Grand Canyon Railway route for passengers in 1968, although the line continued to be used for freight until 1974. At this time the tracks were abandoned, and many of the building constructed by Santa Fe along the line were abandoned and torn down.
     Despite many attempts at resurrecting the historic railway, it wasn't until 1989 that the railway was privately purchased and restored, resuming service on September 17, 1989 to commemorate the original opening date. The original Santa Fe Railway Station in Williams was restored, and the northern terminus is still The Grand Canyon Depot, owned by the National Park Service. The Grand Canyon Railway runs with refurbished vintage diesel and steam locomotives as well as restored Harriman coaches dating to the 1920s with varying classes of service and luxury accommodation.
     For a truly unforgettable visit to the Grand Canyon, the Grand Canyon Railway opens the doors to the past of the golden days of travel.

 

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