The Experience

Do you believe? We do at the South Devon Railway and that is why we are proud to be hosting an exciting magical experience like no other. This Christmas, THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride is coming to South Devon Railway! Here we will theatrically re-create the 2004 motion picture for you and your family. Dive into the sights, sounds and intrigue of this classic children’s tale.

Prepare for a truly spectacular Christmas experience, surrounded by the magic and wonder of the season.

You can almost hear the faint sound of sleigh bells in the distance as you take in the festive decorations at the station at Buckfastleigh.

In the distance, out in the cold night, to much excitement, you hear the familiar whistle of the steam train that is THE POLAR EXPRESS™!


As the train arrives with the chefs greeting you through the windows, the conductor invites you and the other guests to join them shouting “all aboooooard!”. The excitement on the platform is intense- with guests dressed in snuggly pajamas, you all board the train with the chefs helping you to your seats.

You leave the station and scenes from the film come to life as singing and dancing chefs arrive to serve cookies and hot chocolate. Our guests, young and old, are invited to share their stories and magical Christmas experiences with characters from the film.

Hot Chocolate & Singing Chefs

Our dancing chefs serve our famous hot chocolate and the sweetness lingers in your mouth and warms your belly. Listen as the classic Christmas tale The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg is told in its entirety.

Chefs show pages from the beautifully illustrated book for the whole carriage to follow. Families are welcome to bring along their own copy and read along. A smile grows on your face as you watch your child become absorbed in the wonderment of the story.

As your journey continues, be sure to keep an eye out as elements from the story spring to life. Watch and listen as another scene unfolds on-board before your eyes.


Keep your eyes peeled for Santa. As the train slows to a halt, be sure to watch the entrance of your carriage as Santa climbs on board THE POLAR EXPRESS™!

Santa and his elf appear in your midst to present everyone with their very own “First Gift of Christmas”, a silver bell from his sleigh. Thinking back to the Polar Express story, we would remind you to check your pockets for holes!

Our singing chefs lead the passengers in singing festive carols as the train returns to Buckfastleigh station. On arrival, passengers depart the train where the magic and fun continue. Don’t forget to write and post your letters to Santa and be sure to take the opportunity to colour in your favourite characters from the story. Check out the Elves’ scanner to see who’s been naughty or nice and souvenirs are available in our gift shop.

We encourage all of our guests, young and old, to wear pyjamas just as in the film. Children absolutely love it and if you can persuade our older guests, Mum, Dad, Granny and Grandpa to also join in, the atmosphere in the train comes alive for a truly magical experience!

This is where your participation in the story of THE POLAR EXPRESS™ comes to an end. Our hope is that your Christmas season has been enriched and memories from your experience will be with you for years to come.

“Well, ya comin’?”

Book Polar Express Tickets today.

Individuals & Families
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Booking 20+ tickets? See below!
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