MANCHESTER, Ga. — Many people driving through this part of Georgia are heading to Warm Springs and FDR’s Little White House.
But avid railfans know that Manchester is a prime location to watch trains.
It’s perhaps no surprise that the city built a viewing platform overlooking the tracks. After all, the railroad helped shape the city into what it is today.
In the first decade of the 20th century, the Atlanta, Birmingham, Atlantic Railroad decided Manchester would lie at the junction of lines from Atlanta, Birmingham and Waycross. The lines still merge in Manchester, but the trains are today operated by CSX.
The city of about 5,000 built the viewing platform about 10 years ago. The observation deck has a built-in radio scanner, which allows visitors to hear railroad-radio traffic.
On average, more than three dozen trains pass through the city every day. The city also holds an annual Railroad Days festival in October.
IF YOU GO: From Atlanta, take Interstate 85 south to Georgia Highway 100. Continue south on Georgia Highway 41 to Manchester. From Atlanta, Manchester is a roughly two-hour drive.