Hop aboard the Pocono Historic Trolley Tour and discover the history of Delaware Water Gap as well as things to do and places to visit today!
Delaware Water Gap, Monroe County - The trolley was once an important part of transportation in the Delaware Water Gap area. Now a century later, it’s back and operating from the same spot. Only this time not to transport tourists, but primarily, to teach them.
The Pocono Historic Trolley Tour takes riders to local landmarks including The Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort, which hosted celebrities like Jackie Gleason and Arnold Palmer. Swing by the iconic Shawnee Playhouse and The Deer Head Inn, the country’s oldest continuously running jazz club, where the legendary Bob Dorough of Schoolhouse Rock often performed.
“We saw this in an ad for Pocono Mountains Magazine, so we called this morning and asked if they were running. They said absolutely, so we came and checked it out,” said Doris Roderick, visiting from Florida.
The narrated tours, offered by Pocono Day Tripper, are now in their second season but just began operating from an original trolley stop at The Historic Castle Inn, a once popular and grand resort in Delaware Water Gap.
“It’s so rewarding when I see all the smiling faces coming off. They tell me how much they enjoyed the tour and its history. That means everything to me,” said Peter Luck, owner of Pocono Day Tripper.
Built in 1906, The Historic Castle Inn was the area’s first resort with running spring water and electricity. It also served as a training camp for big name boxers like James Braddock, known as Cinderella Man. After the Inn closed, the famous Fred Waring, who you might associate with the Waring Blender and The Pennsylvanians, ran his music empire from here. Eventually, the property became abandoned, until 2005.
“We have been working tirelessly to resort The Castle Inn and bring it back to its old self. At any time when people visit, they’ll see a project going on. It’s kind of a living museum,” said co-owner Theresa Veltri.
Now on select days, you can take an official tour around The Historic Castle Inn and step outside to board the trolley. “To have the trolley back means a great deal to us, because it was part of the Castle Inn’s history,” explained co-owner Frank Paccione.
Thanks to a nearby train station, Delaware Water Gap was once the country’s second most popular inland destination, hosting half a million tourists each year. The trolley line ran locally among dozens of inns and hotels, through 1928.
“This is an awesome tour. I definitely recommend for anyone who is interested in learning about the area to jump on-board and come visit the Poconos,” said Ray Samora, visiting from California.
The tour teaches more than just local history. It also serves to give visitors ideas about places to explore in the Poconos, all from the comfort of a recently-refurbished open-air trolley from the 1980s. Tickets are available for purchase at The Historic Castle Inn or online at PoconoDayTripper.com.