Polar Express Train Rides In The US: The Complete Guide For 2023 (2024)

Table of Contents
What is the Polar Express train ride all about? Do you have to wear pajamas on the Polar Express train rides in the US? Where can I buy Polar Express keepsakes? Where are the Polar Express train rides in the US? Polar Express Train Rides – AZ Grand Canyon Railway Polar Express Train Rides – CA Railtown 1897 State Historic Park Southern California Railway Museum California State Railroad Museum Polar Express Train Rides – CO Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad Colorado Railroad Museum Polar Express Train Rides – FL Miami Central Polar Express Polar Express Train Rides – IL Chicago Union Station Monticello Railway Museum Fox River Trolley Museum Polar Express Train Rides – IN French Lick Scenic Railway Whitewater Valley Railroad Polar Express Train Rides – KY Big South Fork Scenic Railway Polar Express Train Rides – MA Cape Cod Central Railroad Polar Express Train Rides – MD Western Maryland Scenic Railroad B&O Railroad Museum Polar Express Train Rides – ME Maine Narrow Gauge Railroad Polar Express Train Rides – MO St. Louis Union Station Branson Scenic Railway Polar Express Train Rides – NC North Carolina Transportation Museum Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Polar Express Train Rides – NJ Delaware River Railroad Excursions Morristown & Erie Railway Polar Express Train Rides – NV V&T Railway Commission Polar Express Train Rides – NY Adirondack Railroad Polar Express Medina Railroad Museum North Fork Trolley Company Polar Express Train Rides – OH Dennison Railroad Depot Museum Polar Express Train Rides – OK Oklahoma Railway Museum Polar Express Train Rides – RI Blackstone Valley Tourism Council Polar Express Train Rides – TX Galveston Railroad Museum Texas State Railroad Polar Express Train Rides – WA Chehalis-Centralia Railroad Association Polar Express Train Rides – WI National Railroad Museum Leave a Reply Leave a Reply

Looking for Polar Express train rides in the US? Great! They are such a fun way to get the whole family into the festive spirit.

We love everything about the holiday season and are big fans of the Polar Express train ride experience.

If you haven’t come across these festive steam train experiences before, you are in for a treat! They are a fun alternative to visiting a Santa’s Grotto to meet Santa.

Our complete guide to the Polar Express train rides in the USA will give you all the information you need.

We give a little information about the experience – what it’s all about. We detail where to find a Polar Express train ride near you and when they are running. We have listed all of the Polar Express train ride locations in the US.

Not all of the dates for the 2023 US Polar Express experiences have been released but we will update this post as soon as they are. We have linked to each individual Polar Express train ride in the US for the most up to date information.

Keep an eye out for when tickets are released because they SELL OUT FAST!

This post contains affiliate links. If you click on one and book or buy something, we may earn a small commission but this is at no extra cost to you.

Polar Express Train Rides In The US: The Complete Guide For 2023 (1)

What is the Polar Express train ride all about?

Not heard of the Polar Express train rides?

As with the Polar Express train rides in the UK, the US Polar Express train experiences are based on a lovely Christmas story by Chris Van Allsburg, The Polar Express.

The story is about The Polar Express that stops at a little boy’s house in the middle of the night. He jumps on board in his pajamas and is whisked away on a magical journey of self-discovery to the North Pole.

The experience turns him from being a doubter into a believer and is incredibly heart-warming.

The Polar Express has also been made into a film and isone of the best Christmas movies for kids. If you haven’t seen it, we highly recommend watching it before your train ride.

You can watch the Polar Express on Amazon Prime here,buy the DVD here or you can buy the book here. We found it was nice to have our own copy of the book during the train journey.

Each Polar Express train ride may be slightly different but in general, you will be greeted by the conductor. You will then be served hot chocolate and cookies by the singing and dancing chefs during your journey to the North Pole where you will finally meet Santa.

Santa will present you with a silver bell from his sleigh… But only if you are a true believer!

Do you have to wear pajamas on the Polar Express train rides in the US?

You don’t have to wear pajamas but if you do, it all adds to the experience! It is encouraged – and most people do.

It is fun to buy matching pajamas for the family for the occasion. These are the Polar Express branded pajamas:

Where can I buy Polar Express keepsakes?

There is a whole range of Polar Express branded merchandise. You can check out the Polar Express Amazon store here.

Where are the Polar Express train rides in the US?

There are 34 Polar Express train rides in the United States – so if you search Polar Express train rides in the US near me – you should find one.

To make it easier for you, we have listed all of the 2022 US Polar Express train rides alphabetically by State below.

Find out if there is a Polar Express train ride near you.

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Photo Credit: Southern California Polar Express Train Ride

Polar Express Train Rides – AZ

Grand Canyon Railway

When: 11th November – 30th December 2022. The trains depart at 5.30 and 7.30 pm daily and the experience lasts about 90 minutes.
Where: Grand Canyon Railway, 235 N Grand Canyon Blvd, Williams, AZ 86046.
Tickets: Adult tickets (16+) start at $57 and go up to $95. Child tickets start at $38 and go up to $64. Not including taxes and fees.
Website: Grand Canyon Railway Polar Express.

They also run an ‘Ultimate Polar Express Experience‘ where you can exclusively hire your own train car. Beware – prices start at $8000!

Polar Express Train Rides – CA

Railtown 1897 State Historic Park

When: TBC.
Where: Railtown 1897 State Historic Park, 10501 Reservoir Rd, Jamestown, CA 95327.
Tickets: Adult tickets (16+) start at $50 for standard class and $70 for first class. Tickets on sale 12th October.
Website: Railtown 1897 State Historic Park Polar Express.

Southern California Railway Museum

When: TBC.
Where: Southern California Railway Museum, 2201 South A St, Perris, CA 92570.
Tickets: TBC.
Website: Southern California Railway Museum Polar Express.

Note that The Fillmore & Western Railway in Fillmore, CA is no longer running their Polar Express ride.

California State Railroad Museum

When: TBC.
Where: California State Railroad Museum 111 | Street, Sacramento, CA 95814.
Tickets: TBC.
Website: California State Railroad Museum Polar Express.

Polar Express Train Rides – CO

Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad

When: November 18th – January 1st 2023.
Where: Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad, 479 Main Ave, Durango, CO 81301.
Tickets: Ticket prices vary by class (vintage, deluxe and first class) and range from $39 to $89.
Website: Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad Polar Express.

Colorado Railroad Museum

When: TBC.
Where: Colorado Railroad Museum, 17155 W. 44th Avenue, Golden, Colorado 80403.
Tickets: Standard tickets – $80 per person (2-15 years), $100 per person (16+). Under 2 – FREE. First class – $475 for a table of 4.
Website: Colorado Railroad Museum Polar Express.

Polar Express Train Rides – FL

Miami Central Polar Express

When: TBC.
Where: Miami Central, 600 NW 1st Ave, Miami, FL 33136.
Tickets: TBC.
Website: Miami Central Polar Express.

Not quite Christmas? Check out our guide to picking pumpkins in Florida and corn mazes in Florida! See also the best beaches in Florida and places to visit in Florida with kids.

Polar Express Train Rides – IL

Chicago Union Station

When: TBC.
Where: Chicago Union Station, 500 West Jackson Blvd, Chicago, IL 60606. Guests check-in at the historic Burlington Room located in the Great Hall at Union Station.
Tickets: TBC.
Website: Chicago Union Station Polar Express

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Photo Credit: Chicago Grand Union Polar Express

Monticello Railway Museum

When: TBC – but tentative times are Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays on November 13 – 15, 18 – 20, 25 – 27, and December 2 – 4. Trains will depart at 5 PM, 6:30 PM. and 8 PM on Friday and Saturday and 5 PM and 6:30 PM on Sunday.
Where: Wabash Depot, 200 E. Livingston St., Monticello, IL 61856.
Tickets: There are three classes: Coach ($42 per person), Special Coach ($55 per person) and Deluxe ($300 for a table of 4 including snacks and beverages). Private Car – $1200 and accommodates up to 12 people.
Website: Monticello Railway Museum Polar Express.

Fox River Trolley Museum

When: TBC.
Where: Fox River Trolley Museum, 365 S La Fox St, South Elgin, IL 60177.
Tickets: TBC.
Website: Fox River Trolley Museum Polar Express.

Polar Express Train Rides – IN

French Lick Scenic Railway

When: November 4th through December 23rd 2022.
Where: French Lick Scenic Railway, 8594 W. State Road 56, French Lick, IN 47432.
Tickets: Tickets on sale now and required for everyone aged 2 and up. Coach class from $35 – $40. First class from $60 – $65 and Dome class from $85 – $90.
Website: French Lick Scenic Railway Polar Express.

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Photo Credit: French Lick Scenic Railway

Whitewater Valley Railroad

When: November 11, 12, 13, 18, 19, 20, 25, 26 and 27; December 2, 3, 4, 9, 10, 11, 16, & 17, 2022.
Where: Whitewater Valley Railroad, 455 Market Street, Connersville, Indiana 47331.
Tickets: $39 per person aged 2 and over. Tickets on sale here.
Website: Whitewater Valley Railroad Polar Express.

Polar Express Train Rides – KY

Big South Fork Scenic Railway

When: November 18, 19 20, 25, 26,27 and December 2,3,4,9,10,11, 14, 15,16, 17,18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23.
Where: Big South Fork Scenic Railway, 66 Henderson St, Stearns, KY 42647.
Tickets: From $25 – $70 per person. Tickets on sale here.
Website: Big South Fork Scenic Railway Polar Express.

Polar Express Train Rides – MA

Cape Cod Central Railroad

When: November 25th thru December 23rd 2022.
Where: Buzzards Bay Depot: 70 Main Street, Buzzards Bay, MA.
Tickets: Child tickets (3 – 13) range from $44 to $94 and adult tickets (13+) range from $54 to $104. Tickets on sale here.
Website: Cape Cod Central Railroad Polar Express.

Polar Express Train Rides – MD

Western Maryland Scenic Railroad

When: November 25th thru December 24th 2022.
Where: Western Maryland Scenic Railroad, 13 Canal Street, Cumberland, MD 21502.
Tickets: Check prices on their website. Tickets on sale here.
Website: Western Maryland Scenic Railroad Polar Express.

**Note that there is a mix of steam and diesel trains and that some services depart from a different station. All of this information is on their website when you book**

B&O Railroad Museum

When: TBC.
Where: B&O Railroad Museum, 901 West Pratt St., Baltimore, MD 21223.
Tickets: TBC.
Website: B&O Railroad Museum Polar Express.

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Photo Credit: B&O Railroad Museum

Polar Express Train Rides – ME

Maine Narrow Gauge Railroad

When: TBC.
Where: Maine Narrow Gauge Railroad, 49 Thames St, Portland, ME 04101.
Tickets: Check prices on their website.
Website: Maine Narrow Gauge Railroad Polar Express.

Polar Express Train Rides – MO

St. Louis Union Station

When: TBC.
Where: St. Louis Union Station, 201 S. 18th street, St. Louis, MO 63103.
Tickets: TBC.
Website: St Louis Union Station Polar Express.

Branson Scenic Railway

When: November 4th thru December 23rd 2022.
Where: Branson Scenic Railway, 206 E. Main, Branson, MO 65616.
Tickets: There are three classes: Coach, Premium and Dome. Child tickets (2-12) – from $37 – $63. Adult tickets from $47 – $73. Under 2 – $2.
Website: Branson Scenic Railway Polar Express.

Polar Express Train Rides – NC

North Carolina Transportation Museum

When: November 11,12, 18,19, 25,27 and December 2-4, 8-11 and 13 to 23rd 2022.
Where: N.C. Transportation Museum, 1 Samuel Spencer Dr. Spencer, NC 28159.
Tickets: Tickets on sale 7th and 8th June (members) and 9th June (public). Everyone aged 2 and up need a ticket. Check Polar Express website for price tiers.
Website: North Carolina Transportation Museum Polar Express.

Great Smoky Mountains Railroad

When: November 10-13, 16-23, 25-30 and every day in December except 25th.
Where: Greak Smoky Mountains Railroad, Bryson Depot, 45 Mitchell Street, Bryson City, NC 28713.
Tickets: There are 4 classes: Coach, Crown, Premium Crown and First. Check website for ticket prices and book here.
Website: Greaty Smoky Mountains Railroad Polar Express.

**Note that all of the train rides are diesel EXCEPT for December 24th and 31st which are steam trains**

Polar Express Train Rides – NJ

Delaware River Railroad Excursions

When: November 26, 27,28 and December 3,4,5,10,11,12,13,17,18,19 2022.
Where: Delaware River Railroad Excursions, 99 Elizabeth Street, Phillipsburg, NJ 08865.
Tickets: Child tickets – $32, Adult tickets – $42. Infants on lap – $5. Check website for ticket prices and book here. Tickets go on sale June 30th 11.59pm.
Website: Delaware River Railroad Excursions Railroad Polar Express.

**Note with double decker cars, Santa does not go upstairs. All the entertainment happens downstairs**

Morristown & Erie Railway

When: TBC.
Where: Whippany Station, 1 Railroad Plz, Whippany, NJ 07981.
Tickets: TBC.
Website: Whippany, NJ Polar Express.

Polar Express Train Rides – NV

V&T Railway Commission

When: TBC.
Where: V&T Railway Commission, 4650 Eastgate Siding Rd, Carson City, NV 89702.
Tickets: Tickets on sale summer 2022.
Website: V&T Railway Commission Polar Express.

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Photo Credit: THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride

Polar Express Train Rides – NY

Adirondack Railroad Polar Express

When: November 18th – December 19th 2022.
Where: Adirondack Railroad, 321 Main Street, Utica, NY 13501.
Tickets: Coach class (Adult -$47 / Child – $39) and First class (Adult -$68 / Child – $58).
Website: Adirondack Railroad Polar Express.

Medina Railroad Museum

When: TBC.
Where: Medina Railroad Museum, 530 West Ave, Medina, NY 14103.
Tickets: Book tickets by calling 716-948-0505.
Website: Medina Railroad Museum Polar Express.

Not quite Christmas? Check out these places to go pumpkin picking in New York!

North Fork Trolley Company

When: TBC.
Where: North Fork Trolley Company, 253 Edwards Ave, Calverton, NY 11933.
Tickets: TBC.
Website: North Fork Trolley Company Polar Express.

Polar Express Train Rides – OH

Dennison Railroad Depot Museum

When: December 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 9th, 10th, and 11th, 2022.
Where: Dennison Railroad Depot Museum, 400 Center St, Dennison, OH 44621.
Tickets: Tickets on sale on May 10th for members and June 7th for public. All passengers one year and over must have a ticket. Ticket prices on their website.
Website: Dennison Railroad Depot Museum Polar Express.

***Elf Parade! If you are riding these Polar Express train rides in the US on Fridays at 6 pm, Saturdays and Sundays at 2 pm or 6 pm– watch for the Elf Parade! Approximately 45 minutes before departure, the elves board the train and you can wave to them as they march by you!**

Polar Express Train Rides – OK

Oklahoma Railway Museum

When: TBC.
Where: Oklahoma Railway Museum, 3400 NE Grand Blvd, Oklahoma City, OK 73111.
Tickets: TBC.
Website: Oklahoma City Polar Express.

Polar Express Train Rides – RI

Blackstone Valley Tourism Council

When: Weekends in November and December. 2022 dates to be announced.
Where: Blackstone Valley Tourism Council, 1 Depot Square, Woonsocket, RI 02895.
Tickets: TBC.
Website: Blackstone Valley Polar Express.

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Photo Credit: Blackstone Valley Polar Express

Polar Express Train Rides – TX

Galveston Railroad Museum

When: TBC.
Where: Galveston Railroad Museum, 2602 Santa Fe Pl, Galveston, TX 77550.
Tickets: TBC.
Website: Galveston Railroad Museum Polar Express.

Texas State Railroad

When: November 18th to December 27th.
Where: Texas State Railroad, 789 Park Rd 70, Palestine, TX 75801.
Tickets: There are three classes: Coach, First and Dome class. Tickets range from $30 to $70 for children and $50 to $90 for adults.
Website: Texas State Railroad Polar Express.

Polar Express Train Rides – WA

Chehalis-Centralia Railroad Association

When: Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from November 12th to December 18th 2022.
Where: Chehalis-Centralia Railroad Association, 1101 SW Sylvenus St, Chehalis, WA 98532.
Tickets: Tickets on sale in July 2022. $45 per person. Under 2 – FREE. See website for special seating areas.
Website: Chehalis-Centralia Railroad Association Polar Express.

**services have been suspended until further notice due to a washout on the tracks that occurred on January 6th 2022**

Polar Express Train Rides – WI

National Railroad Museum

When: Select dates between November 18th to December 11th 2022.
Where: Chehalis-Centralia Railroad Association, 1101 SW Sylvenus St, Chehalis, WA 98532.
Tickets: Tickets on sale 10am July 25th 2022.
Website: National Railroad Museum Polar Express.

Polar Express Train Rides In The US: The Complete Guide For 2023 (8)

Photo Credit: National Railroad Museum

So these are all of the Polar Express train rides in the US this year. Will you be going? Let us know in the comments!

7 replies

  1. Doris Porter says:

    July 26, 2022 at 2:32 am

    I would love that for my grandson!

    Reply

  2. joel embry says:

    September 15, 2022 at 10:58 pm

    It says “best” but no review, just a list. deceiving headline.

    Reply

    • Jacquie Hale says:

      September 16, 2022 at 7:13 am

      Thanks for your comment. Nowhere does it state ‘best’. Maybe you were looking at someone else’s post? This does just list all of the US Polar Express train rides by state.

      Reply

  3. Kathy McMahon says:

    September 23, 2022 at 8:08 pm

    What about Green Bay, W.I.? Can I still get tickets? And how much is one?

    Reply

    • Jacquie Hale says:

      September 24, 2022 at 7:00 am

      That US Polar Express Train Ride seems to be sold out for 2022.

      Reply

  4. Stacey says:

    November 14, 2022 at 10:47 pm

    How do you sell the 2022 Polar Express Tickets for Flagstaff? They do not give refunds

    Reply

    • Jacs says:

      November 15, 2022 at 9:42 am

      Hi – I’m not selling tickets for the US Polar Express rides. I’m just letting people know where to find them. I’m sorry if you are having issues with them but you would need to take it up with them.

      Reply

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