I've got to be honest, I find the film slightly scary.
Saved review for later
That is me, Sam, Barney's Mum, speaking for myself! In addition, the 4yr old, who we drove 3.5 hours down to Dartmoor for the Polar Express Train Ride, hasn't seen the film all the way through, so I was slightly concerned that the whole experience was going to be wasted on us. How wrong I was!
The Polar Express Train ride leaves from two points in the UK, Dartmoor, in the South and Weardale, in the North. We picked it up in Okehampton, Dartmoor
So what happens? Well you turn up at a beautiful fairy lit train station. Children are encouraged to wear their PJ's, as in the film, game adults are asked to join in too. It all adds to the experience.
We arrived to a buzzing train platform bursting with festivity. Mulled wine and mince pies a plenty. It was wonderful to see so many families standing, chatting on their PJ's, grandparents in their dressing gowns and Dads in questionable Christmas jumpers and onesies!
The journey starts as soon as you step onto the platform. Characters from the film are dotted about and the train looks identical to the one we are all familiar with. You are greeted in your carriage by the conductor himself and shown to your seat by the chef. And off you go! I won't go into too much detail for fear of spoiling it (we didn't know what to expect & it was great that way!) but a cookie, hot chocolate and much singing, acting and clapping later the train arrives at the North Pole.
You don't get off, of course but a very special man gets on!
What I loved was that each child gets time with the big man. My son spoke to him about what he would like for Christmas and Father Christmas even had a conversation with my son's stuffed cow (who comes everywhere with us), to confirm he had been a good boy this year.
The actors are enthusiastic, engaging and great with the children. They didn't break character for a second, to ensure the children were constantly entertained and that the magic was kept alive, throughout the experience.
As a Mum and Dad, we loved it, so I can only imagine how it looks through the eyes of a child.
I think Barney's face says it all!
If you are considering it, we here at Up All Hours would highly recommend it. 👍 Nice work team Polar Express UK