Nevada Northern Railway
National Historic Landmark      Ely, NV

Polar Express - A Family Tradition
Your family can ride the Polar Express this year
Tickets, Please.  Ready to board the Polar Express for the trip to the North Pole
Santas Helpers serving sweet treats to passengers on the Polar Express
Polar Express by Chris Van Allsberg
The Polar Express conductor knows Santa.<br>You can ask him about the North Pole.
At the North Pole we stop and pick up the Jolly Old Elf himself
Santa wishing everyone a Joyous and Merry Christmas.
The Polar Express...The family event
Kids, it's OK to bring your mom, dad, aunt, uncle, and older sibblings.<br>This trip might remind them of when they could hear the bells not so long ago.

Polar Express Train Ride This Christmas

Meet Santa Claus on our Polar Express Train to the North Pole


Fast Facts

WHAT: Polar Express trains for families depart Ely, NV during the Christmas season for trips to the North Pole and return.

WHEN: Weekends between Thanksgiving and Christmas.  See schedule below.

WHERE: Ely, NV: 245 miles North of Las Vegas, 245 Miles West / Southwest of Salt Lake City, 300 miles East of Reno.

ON-BOARD:   Cookies and hot chocolate will be served.  Meet Santa himself.  Join in singing Christmas carols.

Click here to view schedule and buy tickets now

Experience the magic of Chris Van Allsburg's  classic children's book The Polar Express come to life on the rails of the Nevada Northern Railway .  The journey takes you from Ely, Nevada on a special trip right to the North Pole.   Santa's Elves are honored that Nevada Northern Railway's Polar Express children's train ride has been voted as the "Best Special Event in Rural Nevada" by readers of Nevada Magazine.

Each passenger to the North Pole will be served hot chocolate and cookies while listening to the beloved children's story of the Polar Express and music from the Polar Express soundtrack.   Many of Santa's helpers will be on-board helping you enjoy the trip.  Everyone will experience that magic moment when the train arrives at the North Pole, where Santa Claus himself is waiting!  Santa will board The Polar Express and personally present each child their own special gift.

'the polar express movie

Watch the Polar Express Movie




Make this a Christmas tradition for your children.  Call soon and reserve your seats for the Polar Express - A train ride especially for your children.  Space is limited, and sure to go first to those who truly believe in the spirit of Christmas!

Based on the popular children’s book The Polar Express, this is a story of a young boy and his sister who learn from their friends that there is no Santa Claus. On Christmas Eve, however, the boy hears a distant whistle and sees a locomotive pull into his front yard. He boards it and is on a journey northward; the destination is the North Pole.

After he and the other children disembark, they learn that it is nearly time for Santa to begin his annual Christmas Eve journey. However, he will select one of them to receive the first gift of Christmas, which can be anything that they wish. The young boy is selected, and, after much thought, he chooses a bell from the harness of Santa's reindeer.

When he begins his trip to his home, the boy discovers that he had a hole in his pocket and he lost the bell. The next morning, though, he receives an extra present: the bell with a note from Santa. His parents are disappointed because they do not hear the sweet jingle from it, and they think that it is broken. However, the boy and his sister DO hear the clear, sweet sound because of their faith.

Many years later, the sister could no longer hear the jingle, but the boy always could. He always believed in the spirit of Christmas.

View a fun video taken aboard the Polar Express by Travel Nevada .

What to expect:

Our trains feature on-board restroom and are wheelchair accessibile.  All trains here operate on-time, as they have for over a century, so be at the depot ready for boarding 45 minutes before the departure time.  Sorry, pets aren't allowed on trains or on the grounds.  Service animals are always welcome, but please take necessary precautions for this somewhat noisy, industrial environment.

There is open seating, first come, first served, so board with your children and select seating together.  The train is pulled by one of our vintage diesel locomotives.  The train trip, including visiting with Santa on-board the train takes approximately 90 minutes.

Polar Express ticket reservations strongly suggested - trains often sell out.
The Polar Express Train for families departs from Ely, Nevada

Best Family Event Nevada

Nevada Magazine's Best Family Friendly Adventure - 2015, 2016

TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence - 2014, 2015, 2016

Best Event in Rural Nevada – The Polar Express - 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016

Prices and Discounts

2016 Ticket Prices
AdultChild(4-12)Infant (Under 3)
Polar Express$39 $20 Free


Either there is no availability in the near future, or the event has not yet been set up that far in advance.

Please call us for more information

If you still have a question about this program or the schedule click here

Comments from those who have done this (2)

Topic: Polar-Express
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Marsha Eaton (Las vegas) says...
This is are 12th year going its a tradition for us and are two grand children ages 11-14. And they get so excited to this day when its time for are polar express trip. Which will be this weekend train ride on 18th 4:30 train. Love love love this trip. Everyone is so welcoming and friendly. Love the lil town of ely. Its such a beautiful way to get in the christmas spirit!! I strongly recommend polar express in ely!!!
10th December 2016 8:15am
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Brenda (Carlin) says...
We were on the November 19th, 2016, 4:30 Polar Express. It was a magical experience. The staff was excellent. They were very friendly and attentive to our two little ones. Santa was awesome! He spent time with each child talking to them and giving them both a hug before he left. My granddaughter is 5 years old and believes that the Polar Express Santa is the only real Santa that she sees each year and he is the only one she will tell what she wants for Christmas. To her, the store Santa is just ... Read More
21st November 2016 3:42pm
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