With over 100 Santa Special Steam Trains included from across the UK, use our complete guide & interactive map to find the best Father Christmas Train Rides near you for 2023. 

Christmas Steam Train In The Snow

Create magical memories with your family this Christmas with a steam train trip to meet Santa!

Across the country, Father Christmas and his friends have taken over the rails!  And they’re offering you the chance to hop aboard a heritage train, jump into the Christmas Spirit and say hello to the man in red as you enjoy a journey on one of the UK’s classic railway lines.

We’ve scoured the country from North to South, East to West, and pulled together a list of over 100 fabulous Father Christmas Train Rides in the UK in 2023.  We’ve put all the details into an interactive map so you can find the Santa Special nearest you!

Looking specifically for a Polar Express Train Ride? Step into the set of the classic Christmas Movie and take a trip to the North Pole with your family and friends!  We’ve got the full lowdown on these extra special festive adventures right here.

Want to switch your Christmas Lights Trail walk for a Christmas Lights Train Ride?  We’ve got all the details about the trains illuminating December nights across the UK right here.

But if it’s an train ride with Santa that you’re looking to enjoy with your train lover, young or young-at-heart, then scroll down and get your Dickensian Christmas steam train adventure underway!

Tip: Father Christmas Train Rides are hugely popular.  Do not delay booking once ticket sales open – they will sell out fast!

Note: Information last updated March 2023.  Please check organiser’s websites for latest details.  Contact details below. We are not affiliated with the railway lines in any way. 

Find Your Nearest Santa Train Ride

Use our interactive map just below to explore more than 100 Father Christmas Train Rides across the UK for 2023.  Find your nearest train and click the link for more details.

Or, if you prefer, search by area of the country from the list here.

South West England

Looking for Father Christmas Train Rides in Cornwall, Devon, Somerset, Dorset, Wiltshire or Gloucestershire?  We’ve gathered details of 19 Santa Special steam trains in South West England for you to explore.

Avon Valley Railway Santa Specials

Explore the Avon Valley Railway line as you say hello to Santa and enjoy a mince pie or festive biscuit. Once back at Bitton Station there’ll be an opportunity to meet Santa again and those on the nice list will receive a Christmas treat.

Or why not have Breakfast With Santa?!  Travel first class as you enjoy a full cooked breakfast before Santa makes the rounds on board with a special delivery for each child.

Where: Bitton Station, Bath Road, Bitton, Bristol, BS30 6HD

More: For further information about this Bristol Santa Train Ride, click here.

Bodmin & Wenford Railway Santa by Steam

You’ll be greeted by Santa’s elves before you board your steam train ride to Bodmin Parkway.  Whilst onboard there’s time to write letters to Santa, ready to deliver to the man himself in his special Victorian carriage back at Bodmin General.  There’s plenty of other Christmas activities on offer too.

Where: Bodmin General Station, Bodmin, Cornwall PL31 1AQ

More: For further information about this Cornwall Santa Steam Train Ride, click here.

Dartmouth Steam Railway Christmas Train of Lights

The original award-winning Christmas train of lights offers a very different albeit equally as fabulous Christmas family activity.

Note: the Train of Lights does not typically include a visit from the man in red, there are some special Train of Lights + Santa services available.

For more details about the Train of Lights and our complete guide to all the Christmas light trains around the UK, click here.

Where: Queen’s Park Station, Torbay Road, Paignton TQ4 6AF

More: For further information about this Devon Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Dartmouth Steam Railway Train of Lights

Train of Lights. Image Credit: Dartmouth Steam Railway

Dean Forest Railway Santa Specials

Hop aboard a 80min festive steam train adventure through the Dean Forest.  Santa and his elves will visit you on board and there’s a selection of tasty add-ons to choose between, from Christmas Afternoon Tea to a Christmas Picnic Box or Bacon Roll.

For those looking to extend the festivities there are Mince Pie Specials after Christmas too!

Where: Norchard Station, Forest Road, Lydney, Gloucestershire GL15 4ET

More: For further information about this Gloucestershire Santa Train Ride, click here.

East Somerset Railway Santa Specials

A 30min steam train ride will take you directly to North Pole Station.  Here little ones can meet Santa and get a gift (if they’re on the nice list of course!).  With refreshments and entertainment included in the ticket price, there’s plenty to keep everyone in the festive spirit!

Where: Cranmore Railway Station, Cranmore, Shepton Mallet, Somerset BA4 4QP

More: For further information about this Somerset Santa Train Ride, click here.

Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway Santa Express

Take a trip aboard the magical Santa Expresss to the North Pole (at Winchcombe) for a visit to the man himself.  With warming refreshments, singing penguins and a gift from Father Christmas and his elves, there’ll be more than enough festive cheer for all!

Where: Toddington Railway Station, New Town, Toddington GL54 5DT

More: For further information about this Gloucestershire Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Santa Aboard Christmas Train Ride

Santa Says Hello. Image Credit: Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway

Father Christmas At Lappa Valley

Enjoy a nostalgic steam train ride in the Lappa Valley and visit Father Christmas in his grotto.  There are seasonal refreshments included for the adults, and every child receives a present.  Indoor soft play and rides on the Woodland Railway available too.

Where: Lappa Valley, St Newlyn East, Newquay, TR8 5LX

More: For further information about this Cornwall Santa Train Ride, click here.

Longleat Santa Trains

Hop onboard the train to Santa’s woodland grotto.  Grown-ups enjoy seasonal refreshments whilst the children visit the man in red and those on the nice list will receive a Christmas gift!

Note: This Santa Train is an add-on to your Longleat Christmas family day out and cannot be purchased separately.

Where: Longleat, Warminster, Wiltshire, BA12 7NW

More: For further information about this Wiltshire Santa Train Ride, click here.

Lynton & Barnstaple Railway Christmas Specials

Take a train ride on a heritage steam hauled train from Woody Bay railway station.  Seasonal refreshments are available in the tearoom, and Santa and his elves will be dropping by to say hello.

Note: Under 14s ride free with a small gift from Santa for each child!

Where: Woody Bay Railway Station, Lynton, Devon, EX31 4RA

More: For further information about this Devon Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Moors Valley Railway Santa Special

Climb aboard an authentic steam train in miniature and take a ride to see Father Christmas in his magnificent station grotto. He has presents for both adults and children and there are seasonal refreshments to enjoy.

Where: Moors Valley Country Park, Horton Rd, Ashley Heath, BH24 2ET

More: For further information about this Dorset Santa Train Ride, click here.

Twilight Trains at Perrygrove Railway

Hop aboard a night time train for a magical journey through illuminated woods.  And stop off to see Father Christmas at his snowy station.

For more details about this and other Christmas light train experiences around the country, click here.

Where: Perrygrove Railway, Perrygrove Farm, Perrygrove Road Coleford, Gloucestershire GL16 8QB

More: For further information about this Gloucestershire Santa Steam Train Ride, click here.

Plym Valley Railway Christmas Express

Travel alongside Santa to the ‘North Pole’ (Plym Bridge Halt) whilst you enjoy mugs of steaming hot chocolate and festive decor.  Once you arrive, there’s a chance to meet properly with Santa in his grotto before returning home full of festive memories.

Where: Marsh Mills Station, Coypool Road, Plympton, Plymouth PL74NW

More: For further information about this Devon Santa Steam Train Ride, click here.

The Polar Express at Seaton Tramway

The official Polar Express experience is now available at Seaton Tramway.  Reimagined as a journey on a classic tramcar instead, become part of the classic Christmas tale as you enjoy an interactive theatrical show with your family and friends.

Click here for our comprehensive guide to all things Polar Express Train Ride together with the complete list of all locations.

Where: Seaton Tramway, Harbour Road, Seaton, Devon, EX12 2WD

More: For further information about this Devon Polar Express Experience, click here.

Somerset & Dorset Railway Santa Specials

With goodie bags for the children and seasonal refreshments for the adults, there’ll be plenty of festive cheer! Enjoy a heritage steam-hauled train ride to visit Father Christmas in his train carriage grotto.

Note: Designated quiet trains operate on selected dates for those who prefer a calmer environment.

Where: Midsomer Norton Station, Silver Street, Midsomer Norton, BA3 2EY

More: For further information about this Somerset Christmas Steam Train Ride, click here.

Santa Special Train Ready To Go

Santa Special Steam Train. Image Credit: Somerset & Dorset

The Polar Express at South Devon Railway

The official Polar Express train ride experience has landed at South Devon Railway.  Immerse yourself in the classic festive story as you enjoy a magical Santa train ride experience with your family and friends.

Click here for our comprehensive guide to all things Polar Express Train Ride together with the complete list of all locations.

Where: The Station, Dartbridge Road, Buckfastleigh, Devon, TQ11 0DZ

More: For further information about this South Devon Polar Express Santa Train Ride, click here.

Swanage Railway Steam and Lights

Swanage Railway have replaced their Santa Specials with the equally magical Steam and Lights experiences. 

For more about these and other Christmas Lights trains across the country, click here.

Trago Mills Steam Railway North Pole Express

Board the North Pole Express miniature steam train from Riverside Station to Santa’s Grotto, where you and your family will meet Santa and his elves.

Where: Trago Mills, Stover, Newton Abbot, TQ12 6JD

More: For further information about this South Devon Santa Train Ride, click here.

West Somerset Railway Santa Express

Take a round-trip from Bishop’s Lydeard to Williton as you soak up the atmosphere in your festively decorated heritage carriage.  A gift from Santa and seasonal refreshments will be waiting for you on board and the man in red will be with you as you travel to come around for a chat en route.

Where: Bishop’s Lydeard Railway Station, Bishop’s Lydeard, Taunton, TA4 3RU

More: For further information about this Somerset Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Note: West Somerset Railway also run Winterlights steam train Christmas light rides.  For more information click here.

Yeovil Railway Centre

Take your steam train ride in a decorated heritage carriage along the track to find Father Christmas.  Spend some time with the man himself before returning to the station to explore the Railway Centre and shop.

Where: Yeovil Junction Station, Barwick, Yeovil BA22 9UU

More: For further information about this Somerset Christmas Steam Train Ride, click here.

Polar Express Train Rides

Check out our Complete Guide to the official Polar Express Train Rides around the UK.

South East England & London

Looking for Father Christmas Train Rides in Hampshire, Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Surrey, Sussex or Kent?  We’ve gathered details of 20 Santa Special steam trains in London & South East England for you to explore.

Christmas at Amberley

Ride the Christmas Express Train to visit Father Christmas in a 19th Century Ticket Office. Visit market stalls, enjoy children’s crafts and join in the family Christmas trail.

Where: Amberley Museum, New Barn Road, Amberley, Near Arundel, West Sussex BN18 9LT

More: For further information about this West Sussex Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Bluebell Railway Santa Specials

With Christmas music aplenty to get you into the festive spirit, jump onboard the Santa Special and enjoy a 2hr journey through the East Sussex winter countryside.  Visit Santa in his parlour, collect a present in Santa’s workshop and enjoy a selection of traditional amusements and festive treats (included in the price).

Where: Sheffield Park Station, East Sussex, TN22 3QL (departures from East Grinstead too)

More: For further information about this Sussex Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Note: Bluebell Railway also run SteamLights train Christmas light rides.  For more information click here.

Buckinghamshire Railway Centre Panto Express

Not just any Santa train ride … this is the Panto Express! Enjoy a trip on a heritage steam train with a very special guest on board.  Then once the train has returned to the station, take your seats for a mini family pantomime (approx. 25mins long), professionally presented by a touring theatre company.  Overall experience is approximately 2hrs.

Where: Buckinghamshire Railway Centre, Station Road, Quainton, Aylesbury, Bucks HP22 4BY

More: For further information about this Buckinghamshire Santa Train Ride, click here.

Elves in front of the Panto Express train

Elves in front of the Panto Express. Image Credit: Buckingham Railway Centre

Chinnor & Princes Risborough Railway Santa Steam Specials

Chuff across the county border from Princes Risborough to Chinnor aboard this Santa Steam Train Ride to visit the Oxfordshire’s North Pole Grotto outpost!  Lasting 1hr30 in total, there will be plenty of time to enjoy refreshments, meet Santa and receive a treat from the elves at the grotto before you take the steam train back to Buckinghamshire.

Where: Princes Risborough Railway Station, Station Approach, Princes Risborough, HP27 9DD

More: For further information about this Buckinghamshire Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Cholsey & Wallingford Railway Santa Specials

It’s all change at Cholsey & Wallingford Railway for 2023.  The railway are hanging up their Polar Express conductor’s cap and switching to a more traditional Santa Special service this year. 

We’re excited to see what North Pole magic is coming down the tracks!

Where: Cholsey & Wallingford Railway, Wallingford Station, 5 Hithercroft Rd, Wallingford, OX10 9GQ

More: For further information about this Oxfordshire Santa Train Ride, click here.

Didcot Railway Centre Steam Into Christmas

Uh-oh .. there’s been a Christmas crisis!  Santa has lost his reindeer and needs help to find them.

Explore the 21-acre living museum at Didcot Railway Centre as you and your family search for Santa’s furry flying friends.

Tickets include unlimited train rides on the main demonstration line.  Enjoy festive refreshments as you discover the restored locomotives and hear tales of the railways at Christmas time.  The visit ends with a very special visit to see Father Christmas in Didcot’s very own giant toy workshop where children can choose their gift from the selection available.

Where: Didcot Railway Centre, Didcot, Oxfordshire, England OX11 7NJ

More: For further information about this Oxfordshire Santa Train Ride, click here.

Didcot Railway Steam Into Christmas Family Departing Santa Train Ride

Steam Into Christmas. Image Credit: Didcot Railway Centre

Eastleigh Lakeside Steam Railway Santa Specials

Take a 15-20min ride on the miniature steam train around Lakeside Country Park before visiting Santa in his grotto.  There’s gifts for the children, refreshments for all, and plenty of festive cheer!

Where: Lakeside Country Park, Wide Lane, Eastleigh, SO50 5PE

More: For further information about this Hampshire Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Note: Eastleigh Lakeside also run Christmas lights trains.  For more information click here.

Hampton Kempton Waterworks Railway Santa Specials

Hop aboard this festive train ride in West London for a brilliant Christmas activity for the whole family.  Santa and his elves join you on board and refreshments are included in the ticket price.

Where: Hampton Kempton Waterworks Railway, Snakey Lane, Hanworth, Middlesex, TW13 6XH

More: For further information about this Middlesex Santa Train Ride, click here.

Hayling Light Railway Santa Special

Jack the seaside engine gets a festive makeover as he pulls this Santa train ride along the seafront before an opportunity to meet Father Christmas in his grotto.  Festive treats are included for everyone and children receive a present too.

Where: Eastoke Station, Eastoke, Hayling Island PO11 9HL

More: For further information about this Hampshire Santa Train Ride, click here.

Isle of Wight Steam Railway Santa Specials

A steam locomotive will pull your cosy carriage on the 10-mile round trip from Havenstreet station.  Back at the station itself there’s plenty to keep you entertained; with festive music, a Christmas market, shows for the kids and lots of shopping opportunities too!  Father Christmas is given his very own Victorian carriage, decorated for Christmas, ready for your group to visit.

Where: The Railway Station, Main Road, Havenstreet, Ryde, PO33 4DS

More: For further information about this Isle of Wight Santa Train Ride, click here.

Kent & East Sussex Railway Santa Specials

With nearly 50 years of experience hosting Father Christmas on board their trains, Kent & East Sussex Railway certainly know a thing or two about Santa train rides!  The 70min return journey includes a visit from Santa as well as entertainment from a magician.  Refreshments are included as well as unlimited rides on the gallopers merry-go-round at Tenterden Town Station, and visit to the Christmas model village there too.

Where: Tenterden Town Station, Station Road, Tenterden, Kent TN30 6HE

More: For further information about this Kent Santa Train Ride, click here.

Mizens Railway Santa Specials

Meet Santa aboard a miniature steam train at Mizens Railway in Surrey.  Perfect for the littlies!

Where: Barrs Lane, Knaphill, Woking, Surrey, GU21 2JW

More: For further information about this Miniature Railway Santa Special, click here.

Pinewood (Wokingham) Miniature Railway Santa Specials

Keeping with the mini theme, Pinewood Miniature Railway are bringing back their popular Santa Specials for 2023.  Visit Santa in his grotto and enjoy refreshments for the adults and gifts for those under ten.

Where: Pinewood Leisure Centre, Old Wokingham Road, Wokingham, Berkshire,  RG40 3AQ

More: For further information about this Miniature Railway Christmas Special, click here.

Romney, Hythe & Dymchurch Santa Specials

Enjoy a return trip from New Romney to Hythe and a visit to meet Santa in his grotto with gifts for children from 1-15.  There’s activity sheets for the little ones, seasonal refreshments available and each ticket includes a visit to the model railway exhibition at New Romney before you hop aboard.

Where: New Romney Railway Station, Littlestone Road, Littlestone, New Romney, TN28 8PL

More: For further information about this Kent Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Ruislip Lido Railway Santa Specials

Take a 12min miniature steam train journey around Ruislip Lido and through the woods to find Father Christmas in his grotto.  And everyone (even the grown-ups!) leaves with a present from the man in red!  Then it’s back on board to enjoy the trackside decorations on the way back to Willow Lawn Station.

Where: Ruislip Lido, Reservoir Road, Ruislip, HA4 7TY

More: For further information about this Middlesex Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Sittingbourne’s Steam Railway Santa Specials

A 15min steam train ride delivers you to Kemsley Down where Father Christmas’s elves will show you the way to seasonal refreshments whilst you wait your turn to visit the man himself. Children choose from a selection of gifts during their visit.  Allow two hours for the whole experience.

Where: Sittingbourne Viaduct SKLR Railway Station, The Wall, Sittingbourne ME10 2XD

More: For further information about this Kent Christmas Steam Train Ride, click here.

The Polar Express at Spa Valley Railway

The official Polar Express train ride experience has landed at Spa Valley Railway.  Immerse yourself in the classic festive story as you enjoy a magical Santa train ride experience with your family and friends. 

Click here for our comprehensive guide to all things Polar Express Train Ride together with the complete list of all locations.

Where: West Station, Nevill Terrace, Tunbridge Wells, TN2 5QY

More: For further information about this Kent Polar Express Santa Train Ride, click here.

Steam Dreams’ Santa Steam Express

Take a magical steam train ride straight from the heart of the capital!  This London Santa Train Ride is the perfect family Christmas day out.  Santa and his helpers will be on board the vintage steam train which departs on a 1hr45 round-trip from London Victoria.  Children receive a goodie bag and festive treats before they board the train and those on the nice list will get a gift too!

Where: London Victoria Station, Victoria St, London SW1E 5ND

More: For further information about this London Santa Steam Train Ride, click here.

Swindon & Cricklade Railway Santa Specials

Enjoy a festive train ride to Santa’s grotto where all children receive an age-appropriate Christmas gift.

Where: Blunsdon Station, Tadpole Lane, Swindon SN25 2DA

More: For further information about this Wiltshire Christmas Steam Train Ride, click here.

Watercress Line Steam Illuminations

The Steam Illumination train adventures on the Watercress Line from both Alton and Alresford stations do not have a visit from Father Christmas.  However they are equally magical in their own way and well worth consideration.

For more about these and other Christmas Lights trains across the country, click here.

UK Christmas Light Trails

Find your nearest Christmas light trail and enjoy a magical December evening with your family.

East of England

Looking for a Santa Steam Train Ride in Essex, Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Suffolk or Norfolk?  We’ve gathered details of 13 Santa Specials in the East of England for you to explore.

Audley End Railway Santa Express

Board the Santa Express at Audley End Miniature Railway to Father Christmas’s Winter Wonderland.  Here you’ll meet Father Christmas and his elves and receive a special Christmas gift.  There’s plenty more entertainment on offer with an enchanted walk and opportunities to write to Santa and prepare some reindeer food too!

Where: Audley End Miniature Railway, Audley End Road, Audley End, Saffron Walden, Essex, CB11 4JB

More: For further information about this Essex Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Bure Valley Railway Festive Express

Enjoy this special Norfolk family Christmas day out.  With festive treats as you travel from Aylsham to Brampton station, this 30min steam train ride delivers you right to Santa himself!  For those looking to extend the festivities there are Mince Pie Specials after Christmas too!

Where: Aylsham Station, Norwich Road, Aylsham, Norfolk, NR11 6BW

More: For further information about this Norfolk Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Christmas At Bressingham

Take a special festive steam train ride on the Fen Railway, included in your visit to Bressingham at Christmas time.  Visits to Father Christmas are also included but separate to your train ride.  There’ll also be a chance to ride the popular Gallopers merry-go-round, visit the museum and explore the decorated gardens.

Where: Bressingham Steam Museum & Gardens, Low Rd, Diss, Norfolk, IP22 2AA

More: For further information about this Norfolk Santa Train Ride, click here.

Colne Valley Railway Santa Specials

Santa has found his way to Essex again for the Colne Valley Railway Christmas train rides.  Meet Father Christmas in his grotto before taking a trip on the diesel locomotive-pulled train to find a gift at his toyshop.

Where: Colne Valley Railway, Castle Hedingham, CO9 3DZ

More: For further information about this Essex Santa Train Ride, click here.

East Anglian Railway Museum Day Out With Thomas & Father Christmas

Double celebration!  Join Thomas The Tank Engine and friends for a day of steam engine fun.  Plus add on a trip to see Father Christmas in his railway carriage grotto set within a Victorian Goods Shed.  This is sure to be a winner for any young train enthusiast!

Where: Chappel & Wakes Colne Station, Station Road, Wakes Colne, Colchester, Essex C06 2DS

More: For further information about this Christmas Day Out With Thomas, click here.

Epping Ongar Railway Santa Specials

The experience starts with a ride aboard a heritage bus from either Epping or Ongar to North Weald Station. 

There, you’re sure to get straight into the festive spirit with live Christmas music and delicious treats on sale as you watch Santa arrive on his very own train.

Then it’s time for the grand arrival of Santa’s Special Steam train to Ongar.  Hop on board with Santa himself and enjoy a visit from the man in red as he spends time with all the children and delivers named presents to each.  There’s plenty of festive music to keep you all in good cheer as you enjoy the cosy decorated carriage journey.

Where: Adventures start in either Epping or Ongar, Essex

More: For further information about this Christmas Essex Train Ride, click here.

Note: Epping Ongar Railway also run Light Fantastic train Christmas light rides.  For more information click here.

Fenland Light Railway Santa Specials

Ride the miniature steam train around the track to Santa’s grotto.  Visit the man himself and get a Christmas gift, if you’re on the nice list!  Then back on the train to the station for seasonal refreshments.

Where: Mereside Drove, Ramsey Mereside, Ramsey, Peterborough PE26 2UE

More: For further information about this Cambridgeshire Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Leighton Buzzard Railway Christmas Specials

A 25min Santa’s Steam Special round trip includes a visit to see Santa in his grotto.  Mince Pie Specials are on offer after Christmas – no Santa but seasonal refreshments are included.  And hopefully the popular Santa After Dark train rides will make a return for 2023.

Where: Pages Park Station, Billington Rd, Leighton Buzzard LU7 4TG

More: For further information about this Bedfordshire Santa Train Ride, click here.

Santa & visitors wave in front of train

Santa & Visitors With Steam Train. Image Credit: Leighton Buzzard Railway

Mid-Suffolk Light Railway Santa Specials

Travel aboard a classic steam engine to ‘North Pole Halt’ where you will meet Santa in his Christmas Guards Van.  Then return to the festively-decorated Brockford Station for a trip to the Christmas market with crafts and seasonal refreshments for sale.  Explore the railway museum too before you head home.

Where: Brockford Station, Wetheringsett, Stowmarket, Suffolk, IP14 5PW

More: For further information about this Suffolk Santa Train Ride, click here.

Nene Valley Railway Santa Steam Train

Meet Santa at Wansford Station before boarding your steam train for a 1hr20 round-trip festive journey.  Various ticket options are available and there are food packages available too.  Or if you’re looking for something different and a more grown-up experience, why not try the Yuletide Evening Express Train instead (no Santa but plenty of festive cheer!)

Where: Wansford Station, Stibbington, Peterborough PE8 6LR

More: For further information about this Cambridgeshire Santa Train Ride, click here.

North Norfolk Railway Santa Specials

Climb aboard the classic carriages of this steam train and head off in search of Father Christmas.  You’ll steam all the way to the end of the line in Holt where there’s time to take photos and visit the bar as the engine switches end. 

As you return, alight at Weyborne’s Edwardian station for a stroll through the Christmas Tree Kingdom to find Santa. Then it’s back to Sheringham full of magical memories and Christmas spirit!

There’s plenty to keep you entertained on board with visits from some of Santa’s elves as well as complimentary refreshments and activity packs for the kids.

For those looking to extend the festivities there are Mince Pie Specials after Christmas too!

Where: Sheringham Station, Station Approach, Sheringham NR26 8RA

More: For further information about this Norfolk Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Note: North Norfolk Railway also run The Norfolk Lights Express Christmas light train rides.  For more information click here.

North Weald & District Miniature Railway Santa Special

Take a magical train journey to see Santa at his grotto in the woods at this popular minature railway venue.

Where: North Weald & District Miniature Railway, Harlow Garden Centre, Canes Lane, Harlow, Essex CM17 9LD

More: For further information about this Essex Miniature Santa Train Ride, click here.

Whitwell’s Santa Train

Take a short tour down the track on Whitwell’s heritage line to find Santa’s grotto.  Meet the man himself and receive a personalised gift.  With entertainment from the elves and Christmas crafts on hand too, there’s plenty of festive spirit in the air!

Where: Whitwell & Reepham Railway Station, Whitwell Road, Whitwell, Reepham, Norwich NR10 4GA

More: For further information about this Norfolk Santa Train Ride, click here.

The Complete Guide To Christmas Fairs In England

Looking for a Christmas Craft Fair?  Use our interactive map to find the nearest shopping extravaganza near you!

West Midlands

Looking for a Santa Train Ride in Shropshire, Staffordshire, Herefordshire, Worcestershire, Warwickshire or Birmingham?  We’ve gathered details of 12 Christmas steam trains in the West Midlands for you to explore.

Amerton Railway Santa Specials

Take a 25min journey aboard a Santa express steam train, visiting Toyland and meeting Santa as well as receiving a hand-picked gift and festive goodie bag!

Where: Amerton Railway Station, Stowe-by-Chartley, Nr Weston, Staffordshire, ST18 0LA

More: For further information about this Staffordshire Santa Train Ride, click here.

Christmas Steam Train Ride ready to go

Steam Train Ready To Go. Image Credit: Amerton Railway

Apedale Valley Light Railway Santa Specials

It’s full steam ahead on this train ride to meet Santa in his grotto where children receive a Christmas gift.  Overall experience takes around 45-60mins and the Heritage Centre is open for hot food & drinks.

Where: Apedale Valley Light Railway, Loomer Rd, Chesterton, Newcastle-under-Lyme, ST5 7LB

More: For further information about this Staffordshire Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Birmingham Polar Express Train Ride

The official Polar Express train ride experience is back for 2022!  Immerse yourself in the classic festive story as you enjoy a magical Santa train ride experience direct from the city centre. 

Click here for our comprehensive guide to all things Polar Express Train Ride together with the complete list of all locations.

Where: Birmingham Moor Street Station, Queensway, Birmingham, West Midlands, B4 7UL

More: For further information about this Birmingham Polar Express Train Ride, click here.

Chasewater Light Railway Santa Specials

Journey through the beautiful Chasewater Country Park in a festively decorated steam train in search of Santa.

And why not try the first class experience and enjoy a private compartment for up to six people with a Santa themed food bundle delivered to your seats as you travel!

Where: Brownhills West Station, Pool Lane, Brownhills, Staffordshire, WS8 7NL

More: For further information about this Staffordshire Christmas Steam Train Ride, click here.

The Polar Express at Churnet Valley Railway

The official Polar Express train ride experience has landed at Churnet Valley Railway.  Immerse yourself in the classic festive story as you enjoy a magical Santa train ride experience with your family and friends. 

Click here for our comprehensive guide to all things Polar Express Train Ride together with the complete list of all locations.

Where: Froghall Station, Froghall, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire ST10 2HA

More: For further information about this Staffordshire Polar Express Santa Train Ride, click here.

Echills Wood Railway Santa Rides

Visit Father Christmas and enjoy refreshments at Northgate Station before completing the 2km miniature steam railway track on Echills Wood’s ever-popular Santa train rides.  Tickets include additional rides on the non-Santa train journeys too.

Where: Kingsbury Water Park, Bodymoor Heath Rd, Bodymoor Heath, Sutton Coldfield B76 0DY

More: For further information about this Sutton Coldfield Santa Train Ride, click here.

Note: Echills Wood Railway also run Bright Lights For Winter Nights Christmas light train rides.  For more information click here.

Evesham Vale Light Railway Santa Specials

Take a 1.25mile steam train ride around Evesham Country Park and be sure to look out for Santa’s missing presents along the way.  Then it’s back to Twyford Station for refreshments before you meet Santa in his festive log cabin.  Whole experience is around 45mins.

Where: The Valley, Evesham Country Park, Twyford, Evesham, Worcestershire WR11 4DS

More: For further information about this Worcestershire Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Foxfield Railway North Pole Express

There’s lots of festive cheer on offer at Foxfield Railway where Santa Specials have been a seasonal staple for many years now!  Christmas entertainment and festive treats will keep you feeling warm and cosy, and the train and there’s a visit from Santa too of course with a gift for each of the children.

Where: Foxfield Railway Station, Caverswall Road, Blythe Bridge, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire ST11 9BG

More: For further information about this Christmas Staffordshire Train Ride, click here.

Leek & Rudyard Railway Santa Specials

Enjoy a scenic lakeside ride aboard this miniature steam train as you go in search of Santa on his boat!  There’s seasonal refreshments to enjoy and warm you up as you wait your turn to visit him in his grotto (on dry land!) before you catch your train back to Rudyard Station.  Total visit is approximate 1hr30.

Where: Rudyard Station, Rudyard Road, Rudyard, Leek, Staffs ST13 8PF

More: For further information about this Christmas Staffordshire Steam Train Ride, click here.

Severn Valley Railway Santa Trains

Severn Valley Railway is nearly as busy as the North Pole itself on the run up to Christmas with a huge variety of festive steam offerings to be enjoyed!

All leaving from beautifully decorated Kidderminster station, choose between:

  1. The Santa Train – Enjoy a pre-journey snack before hopping on board your steam train journey to Arley. Then it’s off the train for a live panto-style show and even a glimpse of the man in red!  Back on board the train there’s named presents waiting for the children as you travel back to Kidderminster.  Note: Santa is seen during the show but does not visit the children individually on Santa Train rides.
  2. The Enchanted Express – featuring narration by Dame Julie Walters, enjoy a festive tale and Christmas music as you take a magical journey in your very own private compartment aboard the steam train. There’s seasonal refreshments to enjoy before you board, trackside decorations and more to enjoy.  And you’ll meet Father Christmas and other characters along the way.

And for those who fancy something a little different, there’s the cheerful Carol Trains – with an evening train ride to a lively carol service at Highley Engine House.

Where: Kidderminster Railway Station, Kidderminster, DY10 1QZ

More: For further information about this Worcestershire Santa Train Ride, click here.

Note: Severn Valley Railway also run Steam in Lights Christmas light train rides.  For more information click here.

The Statfold Magical Santa Express

Write letters to Santa to be posted in a magical mailbox.  Then board the beautifully decorated train to see the Big Man himself.  And of course there’s a visit to the Toyshop where children on the nice list can choose an early Christmas gift.

Where: Statfold Barn Railway, Ashby Road, Tamworth, Staffordshire B79 0BU

More: For further information about this Staffordshire Santa Steam Train Ride, click here.

The Polar Express at Telford Steam Railway

The official Polar Express train ride experience has landed at Telford Steam Railway.  Immerse yourself in the classic festive story as you enjoy a magical Santa train ride experience with your family and friends.

Click here for our comprehensive guide to all things Polar Express Train Ride together with the complete list of all locations.

Where: The Old Loco Shed, Bridge Road, Horsehay, Telford, Shropshire, TF4 3UH

More: For further information about this Shropshire Polar Express Santa Train Ride, click here.

East Midlands

Looking for a Santa Special in Northamptonshire, Leicestershire, Rutland, Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire or Derbyshire?  We’ve gathered details of 8 Christmas Train Rides in the East Midlands for you to explore.

The Battlefield Line Santa Trains

With a selection of different refreshment booking options available on these Santa train rides (right up to a hamper full of goodies provided by the elves), you’ll be kept well fed as you travel along the Battlefield Line.  Santa visits everyone along the way and delivers presents to the children on board.

Where: Shackerstone Railway Station, Shackerstone, Nuneaton, CV13 6NW

More: For further information about this Leicestershire Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Ecclesbourne Valley Railway The Train Through Christmas Countryside

With a very special immersive Christmas theatrical production both on the platform and on board your steam train adventure, you’ll certainly get into the festive spirit!  Porters and other Christmas characters tell the story of Santa’s railway during this 1hr45 train ride and you’ll meet Santa along the way and there’s hot chocolate and cookies for every passenger too.

Where: Wirksworth Station, Station Road, Coldwell Street, Wirksworth, DE4 4FB

More: For further information about this Derbyshire Christmas Steam Train Ride, click here.

Great Central Railway Santa Steam Trains

Enjoy a visit from Father Christmas direct to your seat as you enjoy a steam engine train ride through the countryside to the Leicester North Pole Station.  Total trip time is approximately 1hr.

Or upgrade to a Santa Deluxe experience where everything has received an extra magical dusting with fewer passengers, more time with Santa and a visit from Mrs Claus too.

Where: Quorn and Woodhouse Station, Woodhouse Rd, Quorn, Loughborough LE12 8AG

More: For further information about this Leicestershire Santa Train Ride, click here.

Note: Great Central Railway also run Winter Wonderlights train Christmas light rides too.  For more information click here.

Lincolnshire Wolds Railway Santa Specials

Get in the Christmas spirit with these heritage steam Christmas train rides.  Santa and his elves visit you on your journey and you can grab a photo with him at the end too.

Where: Ludborough Station, Station Road, Ludborough, Lincolnshire DN36 5SQ

More: For further information about this Lincolnshire Santa Train Ride, click here.

Midland Railway – Butterley Santa Specials

Meet Santa aboard this steam train ride through the countryside.  Gifts included for the children and refreshments for the grown-ups!  Once you’ve alighted the train there’s a puppet show to enjoy in a heated marquee before you head home.

In case that’s not enough, upgrade to a first class experience for a private compartment for you and your friends and family.

Where: Butterley Station, Butterley Hill, Ripley DE5 3QZ

More: For further information about this Derbyshire Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Steam Train In The Snow

Steam Train In The Snow. Image Credit: Midland Railway

Northampton & Lamport Railway Santa Specials

Enjoy refreshments as you travel through the Northamptonshire countryside on this special steam train ride.  Then back to the station for a visit to Santa and plenty more entertainment besides. 

There’s a Breakfast with Santa option available too with the meal served before you board the train and an extra opportunity to meet Santa as you eat. 

And for those looking to extend the festivities, there are Mince Pie Specials after Christmas too!

Where: Pitsford & Brampton Station, Pitsford Road, Chapel Brampton, NN6 8BA

More: For further information about this Northamptonshire Santa Train Ride, click here.

Peak Rail Santa & Steam Specials

Enjoy Christmas music and seasonal refreshments as you take your festive train ride through the countryside. Santa and his elves visit all the children and deliver gifts as you travel.

Where: Rowsley South Station, off, Harrison Way, Darley Dale, Matlock DE4 2LF

More: For further information about this Derbyshire Christmas Steam Train Ride, click here.

Rushden Historical Transport Society Santa Special

Take a heritage diesel train ride before a visit to Mr & Mrs Claus in their grotto, and enjoy seasonal refreshments for adults and children alike!

Where: Rushden Historical Transport Society, Station Approach, Rushden, Northamptonshire NN10 0AW

More: For further information about this Northamptonshire Santa Train Ride, click here.

15 Jolly Festive Winter Walks

Inspiration for easy cheap family entertainment and a great way to get some fresh air too!

Yorkshire & The Humber

Looking for a Christmas Steam Train in North Lincolnshire, Yorkshire or York?  We’ve gathered details of 9 Santa Train Rides in Yorkshire & The Humber for you to explore.

Cleethorpes Coast Light Railway Santa Specials

All aboard the magical Christmas Express to Lapland Central.  Ride on Santa’s sleigh, write your wish list, enjoy seasonal refreshments and be entertained by mischievous elves as you wait for a glimpse of the man himself!  Total trip is approximately 75mins and includes a Christmas gift for younger visitors.

Where: Lakeside Station, Kings Road, Cleethorpes, North East Lincolnshire, DN35 0AG

More: For further information about this North East Lincolnshire Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Derwent Valley Light Railway Santa Specials

Take a trip along the half-mile track on this Christmas train ride at Murton Park.

Mrs Claus will board the train with you to Christmassy Long House where you’ll get to meet Father Christmas and receive some special Santa money to spend in the magical toyshop! 

With entertainment from Santa’s elves, Christmas crafts, and a Chrismas fayre too, there’ll be plenty of festive spirit for everyone.

Where: Derwent Valley Light Railway, Murton Park, Murton, York, YO19 5UF

More: For further information about this Yorkshire Santa Train Ride, click here.

Embsay & Bolton Abbey Steam Railway Santa Specials

There’s a whole host of different Santa train ride experiences available on the Embsay & Bolton Abbey Steam Railway.  Enjoy a fun-filled festive 60min journey with your family meeting Santa along the way.  Or why not try a festive afternoon tea or even breakfast or a picnic with the big man.

Where: Bolton Abbey Station, Skipton BD23 6AF

More: For further information about this Yorkshire Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Keighley & Worth Valley Elf Explorer

Starting at Oxenhope station, you’ll be taken on a winter wonderland wander by one of Santa’s elves with time to write a letter to Santa before boarding The Elf Explorer steam train for a fun-filled adventure.

Father Christmas and his helpers join the train to visit all the families and deliver the first gifts of the Christmas season.  Refreshments are provided for all, with something a little stronger for the adults!

For those looking for something a little more grown-up, there are Mulled Wine Specials as well

Where: Oxenhope Railway Station, Mill Lane, Oxenhope, Keighley BD22 9LB

More: For further information about this West Yorkshire Santa Train Ride, click here.

Elves busy on the platform

Elves On The Elf Explorer. Image Credit: Worth Valley

Middleton Railway Santa Specials

Enjoy the plentiful decorations at Middleton Station.  Then hop aboard your steam train ride with special guests from the North Pole included on the passenger list!  Santa will visit you as you travel with Christmas gifts for the children.  Once back at Middleton there will be seasonal refreshments available for all.

Where: Middleton Railway, Moor Rd, Hunslet, Leeds LS10 2JQ

More: For further information about this Leeds Santa Train Ride, click here.

North Yorkshire Moors Railway Santa Specials

Father Christmas and his helpers visit you on board as you enjoy a scenic ride on a festive steam engine.  There’s gifts for those young folk on the nice list and the whole trip lasts approximately an hour.

Where: Pickering Station, Park St, Pickering YO18 7AJ (Some trains depart from Grosmont Station)

More: For further information about this North Yorkshire Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Note: The North Yorkshire Moors Railway also run a Light Spectacular Lights Train experience.  However this has been moved from running at Christmas time to the October half term.  

Santa Specials at Scarborough North Bay Railway

All aboard the Christmas Express for a journey to Lapland Central.  There’s complimentary seasonal refreshments as you wait to visit Santa as well as the chance to ride in his sleigh and prepare letters.  Total visit is around 1hr10.

Where: Peasholm Station, Burniston Road, Scarborough, North Yorkshire YO12 6PF

More: For further information about this North Yorkshire Santa Train Ride, click here.

Santa Waving On Platform with Christmas Steam Trains Either Side

Santa Waving. Image Credit: Scarborough North Bay Railway

The Polar Express at Wensleydale Railway

The official Polar Express train ride experience has landed at Wensleydale Railway.  Immerse yourself in the classic festive story as you enjoy a magical Santa train ride experience with your family and friends.

Click here for our comprehensive guide to all things Polar Express Train Ride together with the complete list of all locations.

Where: Leeming Bar Station, Leases Rd, Leeming Bar, Northallerton, DL7 9AR

More: For further information about this Yorkshire Polar Express Santa Train Ride, click here.

Whistlestop Valley Santa Specials

The Christmas Spirit levels are sky high at Whistlestop Valley with no less than three Santa Special experiences on offer!

Choose between Simply Santa, The Santa Expresss and, brand new for 2023, Tea With Santa!

All include a Steam train ride and visit with the man himself of course.  But there’s extras from Christmas Elf Shows, to tram rides, to visits to Santa’s very special toy shop to add on as well.

Where: Clayton West Station, Park Mill Way, Clayton West, West Yorkshire HD8 9XJ

More: For further information about this West Yorkshire Christmas Train Ride, click here.

North West England

Looking for a Christmas Steam Train in Cheshire, Lancashire, Cumbria, Merseyside or Manchester?  We’ve gathered details of 8 Santa Train Rides in North West England for you to explore.

Christmas at Brookside

Come and enjoy a ride at Brookside Miniature Railway alongside Santa’s Factory.  No need to pre-book for this mini adventure.  There’s plenty of trackside displays to spot along the way too.

Note: This miniature steam adventure does not include a meet and greet with Santa but the man in red can often be seen waving from his factory instead.

Where: Brookside Garden Centre, London Road North, Poynton, Stockport, Cheshire SK12 1BY

More: For further information about this Cheshire Miniature Christmas Train Ride, click here.

The East Lancashire Railway Santa Special

Get in the festive spirit with a stroll through Bolton Street Station’s Winter Wonderland, bedecked with Christmas trees and fairy lights aplenty before climbing aboard a steam engine for your special Santa train ride.  Little ones receive a gift whilst adults enjoy a mince pie and Christmas drink and Santa’s helpers are on hand to keep everyone entertained.

Note: The railway line also offer a number of festive lunch and dinner train rides if you’re looking for a more peaceful Christmas journey!

Where: Bolton Street Station, Bury, Lancashire, BL9 0EY

More: For further information about this Lancashire Santa Train Ride, click here.

Lakeside & Haverthwaite Railway Tinsel Trains

Join Father Christmas and his railway elves aboard the Tinsel Train for a 60min return journey from Haverthwaite to Lakeside and back.

Adults enjoy seasonal refreshments as children open their personalised gifts from Santa whilst you wait for the man in red to visit your compartment and say hello.

Where: Lakeside and Haverthwaite Railway, nr Ulverston, Cumbria LA12 8AL

More: For further information about this Cumbria Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Ravenglass & Eskdale Steam Railway Santa Express

Take a round-trip on a steam train through the valley to Dalegarth Grotto as you’re kept busy with entertainers and activities on board. 

More entertainment awaits you at Dalegarth as well as refreshments for everyone, big and small.  Everyone enjoys a visit with Father Christmas before the 40min return trip to Ravenglass.

Upgrade to include a hot festive feast in your adventure!

Where: Ravenglass Station, Ravenglass CA18 1SW

More: For further information about this Cumbria Santa Train Ride, click here.

Ribble Steam Railway & Museum Santa Specials

Santa is back in Lancashire and handing out presents to all the little ones as they and you enjoy the 40min Ribble Steam Railway route aboard a festive heritage train.

There’s live music, seasonal refreshments, face painting and balloon art included too! 

Where: Chain Caul Rd, Preston, Lancashire PR2 2PD

More: For further information about this Lancashire Christmas Train Ride, click here.

South Tynedale Railway Santa Specials

Santa will be busy in Alston again this year with the popular Santa Specials returning.  Take a special steam train ride, receive a gift from Santa and enjoy festive refreshments from the Crossing Cafe.

Where: South Tynedale Railway, The Railway Station, Alston, Cumbria, CA9 3JB

More: For further information about this Cumbria Santa Train Ride, click here.

Santa Steam Train in the snow

Santa Steam Train In The Snow. Image Credit: South Tynedale Railway

The West Lancashire Light Railway Santa Special

A short narrow-gauge steam train ride takes you to Toyland to visit Father Christmas.  There’s gifts for all the children whilst grown-ups can enjoy a mince pie and mulled wine.

Where: Station Rd, Hesketh Bank, nr Preston PR4 6SP

More: For further information about this Lancashire Christmas Steam Train Ride, click here.

Windmill Animal Farm Santa Train

Enjoy a miniature steam train ride in search of Father Christmas.  You may even spot fallow deer amongst the other farm animals as you make your way across Windmill Animal Farm.  Children will receive a gift from the main man at his grotto whilst adults will be treated to some seasonal refreshments.  Tickets include extra to all farm attractions too.

Where: Windmill Animal Farm, Fish Lane, Burscough, Lancashire L40 1UQ

More: For further information about this Lancashire Santa Steam Train Ride, click here.

Christmas Lights Train Rides

Check out our Complete Guide to the Christmas Lights Trains Rides around the UK this year!

North East England

Looking for a Santa Steam Train in Durham, Tyne & Wear or Northumberland?  We’ve gathered details of 5 Christmas Train Rides in North East England for you to explore.

Aln Valley Railway Santa Specials

All aboard the festive Aln Valley Railway for a festive roundtrip journey from Lionheart Station.  There’s seasonal refreshments to enjoy, and Santa and his elves pop by to say hello as you travel.  Christmas gifts, goodie bags and festive crafts in the café are all included in the ticket price.

For those looking to extend the festivities, there are Mince Pie Specials between Christmas & New Year too.

Where: Lionheart Railway Station, Lionheart Enterprise Park, Alnwick, Northumberland, NE66 2EZ

More: For further information about this Northumberland Santa Train Ride, click here.

Heatherslaw Light Railway Santa Specials

Enjoy this 70min festive adventure at the Heatherslaw Light Railway as you travel to the ‘North Pole’ by decorated steam train!  Refreshments are included and Santa & friends are ready to say hello to everyone at Etal Station.  But do wrap up warm as it can get chilly!

Where: Ford Forge, Heatherslaw, Cornhill On Tweed, Northumberland, TD12 4TJ

More: For further information about this Northumberland Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Stephenson Steam Railway Elf Express

Meet Santa and his Chief Elf before you board the steam train for your festive adventure.  You’ll be kept busy with challenges – will you make the cut for Team Santa?! There’s two different carriages to choose between so find the one that fits your group best.  Overall experience is about 90mins long and includes a live interactive theatrical show as well as a visit to the museum on site.

Where: Stephenson Steam Railway, Middle Engine Lane, North Shields, Tyne & Wear NE29 8DX

More: For further information about this Tyne & Wear Santa Train Ride, click here.

The Santa Train Ride Team

Elves and Santa on the Elf Express. Image Credit: Stephenson Steam Railway

Tanfield Railway North Pole Express

Hop aboard the Tanfield Railway steam train ride direct to the North Pole, with your special festive passport in hand! Enjoy seasonal refreshments in Mrs Claus’ tearooms and receive a gift from Santa at his grotto too.  Experience lasts around 1hr50 in total.

Where: East Tanfield Station, Tanfield Lea, Stanley, DH9 9UY

More: For further information about this Gateshead Santa Train Ride, click here.

Weardale Railway Train to Christmas Town

The popular Train to Christmas Town sees Stanhope station transformed into the magical ‘Santahope’ station for the festive season!

Take a 60min return trip between Stanhope and Wolsingham with Santa on board.  Festive treats and entry to the Christmas market are included in the ticket.

Where: Stanhope Station, Station Rd, Bishop Auckland DL13 2YS

More: For further information about this County Durham Santa Train Ride, click here.

Christmas Ice Skating

Find your nearest pop-up ice rink & glide into Christmas!

Wales

We’ve gathered details of 11 Santa Train Rides in Wales in 2023 for you to explore.

Bala Lake Railway Santa Specials

Depart on a 45min festive lakeside steam train journey to find Santa in his grotto.  All children receive a gift whilst adults enjoy a seasonal treat.

Where: Llanuwchllyn Station, Station Road, Llanuwchllyn, Bala, LL23 7DD

More: For further information about this Welsh Santa Train Ride, click here.

Blaenavon’s Heritage Railway Steam Santa Specials

Join Santa for a steam-hauled journey through the Blaenavon World Heritage Site! Complimentary refreshments included for all and a gift will be delivered by Santa for each child on board.

Where: Furnace Sidings Railway Station, Pontypool NP4 9SF

More: For further information about this Wales Santa Steam Train Ride, click here.

The Brecon Mountain Railway Santa Trains

Take a steam train ride to visit Santa in his grotto.  With mince pies & mulled wine for the adults, and gifts for the little ones, there’s festive spirit aplenty on this journey in the beautiful Brecon Beacons.

Where: Pant Station, Merthyr Tydfil, Mid Glamorgan, CF48 2DD

More: For further information about this Wales Santa Train Ride, click here.

Santa Delivering Presents to the Steam Train in the Snow

Santa With Gifts. Image Credit: Brecon Mountain Railway

Gwili Corris Railway Santa Special Steam Trains

Hop aboard the narrow gauge railway from Corris along the picturesque Dulas valley to meet Santa in his grotto.  Seasonal refreshments are provided for big and small and a Christmas gift for the children from Santa too.

Where: Station Yard Corris, Machynlleth, Powys, SY20 9SH

More: For further information about this Mid Wales Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Gwili Railway Santa’s Magical Steamings

Ride a heritage steam train with Santa and Mrs Claus!  Children under 12 receive a present and there’s plenty of time to pose for a family photo too during this 75min festive adventure.  Christmas treats available too!

Where: Bronwydd Arms Railway Station, Carmarthen SA33 6HT

More: For further information about this Southwest Wales Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Note: Gwili Steam Railway also run Lights of the Valley evening train Christmas light rides too on selected dates.  Enjoy meeting Santa AND riding a heritage steam train, with a modern illuminating twist!  For more information click here.

Father Christmas & Mrs Claus at Front of Christmas Steam Train

Father Christmas & Mrs Claus at Front of Christmas Steam Train. Image Credit: Gwili Railway

Llanberis Lake Railway Christmas Trains

This festively-decorated miniature steam engine pulls along its Christmas coaches for a special train ride to meet Santa.  Every child receives a gift.

Where: Gilfach Ddu, Llanberis, Caernarfon, Gwynedd LL55 4TY

More: For further information about this North Wales Santa Train Ride, click here.

Llangollen Railway Santa Special Steam Trains

Journey alongside the River Dee on your Santa Steam Train adventure in search of Santa in his sleigh at Lapland (Carrog station).  Snag your picture with the gent in red and receive a gift (children on the nice list only!).

Where: Llangollen Railway Station, Abbey Rd, Llangollen LL20 8SN

More: For further information about this Wales Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Rhyl Miniature Railway Santa Specials

This festively-decorated miniature steam engine pulls along its Christmas coaches for a special train ride to meet Santa.  Every child receives a gift.

Where: Rhyl Miniature Railway, Wellington Rd, Rhyl LL18 1AQ

More: For further information about this North Wales Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Talyllyn Railway Santa Trains

Enjoy a 90min return trip from Tywyn Wharf Station on a festive Santa train. Children will enjoy meeting Santa at Plas Nadolig and having a photo with the man of the season as well as a chance to pat the donkeys!  And Mrs Claus returns with her festive cookies and mince pies too.

Where: Tywyn Wharf Station, Tywyn LL36 9EY

More: For further information about this Wales Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Welsh Highland Railway Santa Trains

Collect a Christmas hamper for your group at Caernarfon Station before boarding your Santa train ride through Snowdonia National Park to Rhyd Ddu.  Santa and his elves will be on board with you as you enjoy the 3.5hr festive adventure.  A great family Christmas day out in Wales!

For those there for the views, there are some Christmas train rides available along the railway line without Santa too.

Where: Caernarfon Station, St Helen’s Rd, Caernarfon LL55 2YD

More: For further information about this North Wales Christmas Steam Train Ride, click here.

Santa Waves To Passengers on Christmas Train Ride

Santa Says Hi. Image Credit: Welsh Highland Railway

Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway Santa Specials

Sit back and indulge in this nostalgic steam train ride to meet Father Christmas and his elves.  Festive refreshments at the station included in ticket price.

Where: The Station, Llanfair Caereinion, Welshpool, Powys SY21 0SF

More: For further information about this Mid Wales Santa Train Ride, click here.

Scotland

We’ve gathered details of 5 Christmas Train Rides in Scotland in 2023 for you to explore.

Bo’ness & Kinneil Railway Santa Steam Trains

Indulge in festive music and decorations aboard your steam train carriage as you travel to the ‘North Pole’.  Upon arrival you’ll have the chance to write and post a Christmas Wish Card to Santa before returning to your train for a journey back with a very special guest on board.

Where: Bo’ness Railway Station, Union Street, Bo’ness EH51 9UD

More: For further information about this Scotland Christmas Train Ride, click here.

The Polar Express at Caledonian Railway

The official Polar Express train ride experience has landed at Caledonian Railway.  Immerse yourself in the classic festive story as you enjoy a magical Santa train ride experience with your family and friends.

Click here for our comprehensive guide to all things Polar Express Train Ride together with the complete list of all locations.

Where: Brechin Station, Park Road, Brechin, DD9 7AF

More: For further information about this Scotland Polar Express Santa Train Ride, click here.

Keith & Dufftown Railway Santa Specials

Take a journey to visit Santa at the North Pole (Drummuir) to explore his winter wonderland and maybe even receive a gift.  Whilst at the North Pole, there are places to enjoy a short picnic or perhaps even have a snowball fight!

Where: Keith Town Station, Church Road, Keith AB55 5BR (trains depart from Dufftown on some dates)

More: For further information about this Scotland Santa Train Ride, click here.

Royal Deeside Railway Santa Specials

Hop aboard the festive steam train ride to meet Santa!  With a drink to enjoy as you travel down the line, there’s also plenty of Christmas singing as you meet Santa at his grotto upon your return.

Where: Milton of Crathes, Banchory, Aberdeenshire AB31 5QH

More: For further information about this Aberdeen Santa Train Ride, click here.

Strathspey Steam Railway Santa Express

The Santa Express will be steaming into Inverness-shire once again with opportunities to say hello to Santa as you enjoy the stunning Scottish countryside!

And the popular mince pie specials will be back too!

Where: Aviemore Station, Dalfaber Road, Aviemore, Inverness-shire, PH22 1PY

More: For further information about this Scottish Santa Train Ride, click here.

Northern Ireland

We’ve gathered details of 3 Christmas Train Rides in Northern Ireland in 2023 for you to explore.

Downpatrick & County Down Railway Lapland Express

Santa and Mrs Claus will visit you aboard this 45min return trip to Inch Abbey.  Enjoy seasonal refreshments as you are entertained with magic and games as you travel.  Children will receive a Christmas gift from the man in red as he stops by.

Where: Downpatrick Railway Station, Market St, Downpatrick BT30 6LZ

More: For further information about this County Down Santa Train Ride, click here.

Santa’s Polar Express at Slieve Donard Resort

Join Santa and his elves at Slieve Donard for a thoroughly festive family day out.  Hop aboard the Polar Express (note: this is a road train) for a journey through a Winter Wonderland to Santa’s Workshop.

Upon arrival there’ll be Christmas activities, festive stalls to explore and seasonal refreshments on offer too.  Then a visit to the man in red, complete with plenty of photo opportunities of course!

Note: This is not an official Polar Express experience and so is not linked to the book and movie.

Where: Slieve Donard Resort and Spa, Downs Road, Newcastle, Co. Down BT33 0AH

More: For further information about this Northern Ireland Santa Train Ride, click here.

Elf Entertaining the passengers

Elf Entertaining Passengers at Santa’s Polar Express. Image Credit: Slieve Donard

Whitehead Railway Santa Specials

Enjoy a return journey to Whitehead Railway Museum aboard this special festive train.  See Santa at the platform and post your wish letter too.

Where: Lanyon Place Railway Station, Belfast BT1 3NR

More: For further information about this Northern Ireland Christmas Train Ride, click here.

Other Isles of the UK

We’ve gathered details of Santa Train Rides in The Channel Islands and on the Isle of Man in 2023 for you to explore.

Alderney Railway Santa Express

Mechnical issues meant that this popular Santa Express couldn’t run in 2022.  Let’s hope a little North Pole magic can bring it back for the 2023 season.

Where: Braye Road Railway Station, 7 Rue de Beaumont, St. Anne, Guernsey

More: For further information about this Guernsey Santa Train Ride, click here.

Groundle Glen Railway Santa Trains

These popular Isle of Man Christmas Train Rides take passengers from North Pole Halt directly to Santa’s Grotto.  Explore his winter wonderland and say hello to the man himself.  And there’s refreshments for all and gifts for the little ones included in the ticket price.

For those looking to extend the festivities there are Mince Pie Specials after Christmas too!

Where: Groudle Glen, King Edward Rd Onchan, Isle of Man IM3 2JY

More: For further information about this Isle of Man Santa Train Ride, click here.

Isle of Man Santa Express

North Pole magic is alive and kicking on The Isle of Man with the return of the Douglas station departures on the Santa Express!

Travel aboard a classic steam train in search of Santa in his grotto and receive a gift from the man himself and his elves.  With the opportunity for plenty of selfies with these heritage trains and tasty seasonal treats, it promises to be a fabulous festive adventure for the whole family.

Isle of Man Transport also run Polar Express Christmas Train rides.  Click here for our comprehensive guide to all things Polar Express Train Ride together with the complete list of all locations.

Where: Douglas Station, 4 Railway Terrace, Douglas, Isle of Man IM1 2ER, Isle of Man

More:For further information about this Isle of Man Christmas Train Ride, click here.

North Norfolk Railway Lights Express

Christmas Lights Train Rides

Christmas Lights train rides are the latest hot ticket for the festive season! Use our map to find your nearest light fantastic experience.

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The Polar Express Train Ride Poster

Polar Express Train Rides

Don your Christmas PJs and find your nearest UK Polar Express Train Ride location for a fabulous family Christmas day out.

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Which is your favourite Santa Train Ride?  Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.  If you know of any other Christmas train rides which we should be including, do get in touch.

Looking for a Polar Express Train Ride – we’ve got all the details right here.  Or if you want to find out more about Christmas Lights Train Rides, click here.

Fancy gliding into Christmas at a pop-up ice skating rink?  Check out our interactive map to find your nearest.

Share Your Adventure!

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And be sure to tag #jollyfestive in your photos.  We love to see which Christmas activities you’ve been enjoying!

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