San Diego Model Railroad Museum

a CILC Content Provider

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Spanning over 27,000 square feet of trains, trestles, and tracks we are in the heart of natural beauty framed by the majestic backdrop of Balboa Park. The San Diego Model Railroad Museum (SDMRM) is a space where imagination is beautifully engineered. SDMRM features both indoor and outdoor exhibits and programming for all ages.

Our mission is to research, collect, preserve, and present the heritage of American railroading with scale models of California railroads. At every twist, turn, and tunnel we spark curiosity with developing educational programming that includes education milestones like critical thinking, creativity, and problem solving. Our exhibits transform little engineers to modelers who tinker with engines and nail down track to build and transform something from nothing.


Programs by San Diego Model Railroad Museum

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Communities Then & Now: Making a 3D Model - Available in San Diego County Only!

How are we alike and/or different from people who lived in the past? This program features our unique collection of historic California model railroads to engage students in an exploration of the past, and an understanding of how some things...


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Model Railroading for Beginners

In this program, young children are introduced to the basics of model railroading. Participants will paint, plaster, lay corkboard and track, in addition to creating a scenic landscape complete with trees and people. 


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Modeler Citizen

Modeler Citizens is a series of presentations, where acclaimed modelers and friends of the San Diego Model Railroad Museum discuss their expertise and adventures in model railroading!


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The Able Arch & the Trusty Truss

What makes arches and triangles so strong? Students will learn about both the physical science and history of arch and truss bridges. Students will perform several experiments to investigate the inherent strength of these shapes and understand why...


More About This Provider

Type of Organization



Julia McMeans
1649 El Prado
San Diego California 92101
619-696-0199 ext.404
United States

Primary Disciplines

The programs of San Diego Model Railroad Museum cover:

Social Studies/History

Awards, Quotes, Testimonials

"I loved how hands-on and educational the experience was...We came back to class after and put our community creations together! So much fun! Thanks again and looking forward to visiting soon!" 

- Kristen Kilian, Ocean Beach Elementary, on her experience at Communities Then & Now: Making a 3D Model (2019)