The best holiday trains for magical trips with kids this winter

Last updated 24th November 2022

One way to capture the magic of Christmas is to take a winter wonderland holiday train ride. These train routes bring the magic to life, and some even put their own spin on the Polar Express experience. Gather the family, don your Christmas pajamas, and settle in for non-stop fun!


The Santa Claus Express holiday train ride on Eurail

The Santa Claus Express is named for the jolly man whose seasonal commute mirrors the railway’s own route. The double-decker holiday train travels overnight from Helsinki to Finnish Lapland: Finland’s northern most region known for it’s year-round winter climate. It runs through snow-lined peaks, stopping in Rovaniemi and Kemijarvi. Situated on the Arctic Circle, Rovaniemi is the official home of Santa Claus Village. Don’t miss Santa’s personal post office, where millions of letters arrive each year. Then share your own Christmas list with Santa and enjoy the abundance of Christmas trees and native reindeer population, a true winter wonderland!

The Polar Express With The Great Smoky Mountains Railroad

The Polar Express with the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad takes families on a memorable journey. The journey comes to life as the holiday train departs Bryson City, North Carolina and sets off through for a special visit to the North Pole. To the soundtrack of the The Polar Express movie, passengers enjoy warm cocoa and sweet treats. Kids will be thrilled when the train arrives at the North Pole and Santa climbs aboard. Just like in the story he has a gift for every child, their own silver sleigh bell. Then, singing Christmas carols, happy young passengers ride the train back to Bryson City Depot.

The Polar Express holiday train on Brightline, Miami

Brightline is a magical way to get around South Florida this holiday season. The service delivers one of the holiday’s most thrilling events in the tri-county area, THE POLAR EXPRESS™. From Brightline Miami Central Station, this one-of-a-kind experience will bring to life the heartwarming story by Chris Van Allsburg, during a magical, one-hour trip all set to the performances and sounds of the Warner Bros. Pictures feature film.

The Chocolate Train, Switzerland

Take the Chocolate Train from Montreux to Broc-Chocolat and discover where Switzerland’s delicious chocolate and cheese is made. Then visit the cheese factory in the beautiful village Gruyère and continue your journey to Broc to see the secrets of Swiss chocolate.

North Pole Limited holiday train, Chattanooga, Tennessee

During the holiday season 2022, North Pole Limited trains depart from Chattanooga Tennessee for the North Pole. Along the way, you’ll be treated to treats and storytelling while kids write letters to Santa. As the train gently rolls down the rails, you can see lighted displays outside. And when it arrives at the ‘North Pole’, then Santa comes on board for a special visit with young passengers.