Believe. That is a very strong word that holds such promise and such possibility. It is used quite often in times of doubt, in times of strife, in times of uncertainty. This strong word is the crux to the Christmas film “The Polar Express-” a film that captivates audiences every year and rejuvenates the strength of their ability to believe. Knowing that this film has such an impact on our thoughts and spirit, The Waterloo Railway launched a special Christmas experience centred around the film, allowing guests to feel the true meaning of Christmas and encouraging them to believe.

First, A Little about St Jacobs

  • Thanks to a prominent Mennonite heritage, St Jacobs attracts many tourists to visit its city
  • The Farmer’s Market is one of the largest in the world and attracts thousands yearly
  • The Conestago River runs through St Jacobs
  • There are trolley rides by horse available from the Market
  • The first railway to be built here was in 1891
  • Home Hardware, a very popular company for renovation materials, has roots dating back to St Jacobs.
  • Darryl Sittler, famous NHL Hockey Player, was born here!
The Polar Express is the Most Magical Train Experience in Ontario
St Jacobs Mennonite community

Now, for the Polar Express Magical Train Experience!

Themed trains have become such a fun attraction for certain holidays. This year the Waterloo Railway launched the Polar Express train experience and after riding and enjoying the cheer from locomotive to caboose, I can definitely endorse this Christmas experience for all ages. We rode this fun and festive train and below are my thoughts and insights on the overall experience.

The Polar Express is the Most Magical Train Experience in Ontario
The Polar Express Train Experience

 

The Polar Express is the Most Magical Train Experience in Ontario
The Polar Express Train Experience

You Don’t Need to See the Film to Enjoy Yourself

One thing I truly loved about the experience was that you didn’t need to have seen the film to appreciate and enjoy the experience. Yes you may not know the significance of certain characters or actions, but you can feel festive, cheer, and joy with the surroundings, the gorgeous decor, the delicious treats, and the friendly staff.

The Polar Express is the Most Magical Train Experience in Ontario
The Polar Express

 

The Polar Express is the Most Magical Train Experience in Ontario
The Polar Express

The Logistics

To enjoy this experience to its fullest, here are the logistics that you need to know:

  • Book your tickets online through their website
  • Choose the time of your experience from those available! After payment is received, you will receive a confirmation and your tickets online.
  • Arrive 30 minutes prior to your experience to avoid rushing to find parking and check in. We found this amount of time was just enough as there was plentiful parking and the line-up for checking in was quite seamless.
  • Browse in the special Polar Express Gift Shop! Get everything from plush teddy bears, snow globes, magnets, ornaments, your own Believe Sleigh Bell, and more.
  • Find your seat, sit back and relax to await the entertainment.
The Polar Express is the Most Magical Train Experience in Ontario
Friendly Staff like Jared check you in!

 

The Polar Express is the Most Magical Train Experience in Ontario
Awaiting to Board!

 

The Delightful Gift Shop
The Delightful Gift Shop

 

The Delightful Gift Shop - I love the Bell
The Delightful Gift Shop – I love the Bell

 

Ready for the show!
Waiting to board for the Polar Express Train Experience!

The Show!

So after you are seated and off on your journey, prepare for a ride full of magic and happiness. The experience begins with dancing chefs performing the Hot Chocolate song, a very entertaining dance number. This seriously gets you in the festive mood before savouring some of the best hot chocolate you will drink in a long time. To go with this sweet and very satisfying drink, you are given a soft and delicious chocolate chip cookie. Truly a delightful snack true to Christmas cheer putting you in the mood for seasonal joy and rekindling your festive beliefs.

Ready to Dance!
Ready to Dance!

 

Dancing to Hot Chocolate
Dancing to Hot Chocolate

 

Waiting for Hot Chocolate with Momo the Mascot
Waiting for Hot Chocolate with Momo the Mascot

 

The Delicious Hot Chocolate
The Delicious Hot Chocolate

After the Hot Chocolate number, prepare to hear the story of the Polar Express narrated from the actual storybook. The staff walk up and down the aisle of the train with the pages being read for all to follow along. The books they held were gorgeously illustrated and completely captured the magic of the story. Want a copy of this amazing book? Grab one here.

Follow Along with the Story
Follow Along with the Story
Follow Along with the Story
Follow Along with the Story

 

Follow Along with the Story
Follow Along with the Story

The Polar Express Train Experience is True to the Movie

What I truly loved about the experience was the accuracy to the film and story. No details was missed. The song and dance number for the hot chocolate, the dialogue, and even the punching of the tickets were just like the festive tale. We were quite impressed that no stone was left unturned ensuring guests could truly live through and enjoy the beautiful family Christmas film.

Tickets Ready to be punched
Tickets Ready to be punched

 

Getting tickets punched!
Getting tickets punched!

The North Pole!

So the voyage continues as guests are escorted magically to the North Pole to see Santa Claus! The lights shine brightly, the snow glistens on the rooftops, and the snowmen smile as we ride by. The train stops at the North Pole for you to take photographs and for Santa to board the train.

The North Pole as seen from the Train!
The North Pole as seen from the Train!

 

Santa arrives!
Santa arrives!

 

Santa arrives!
Santa arrives!

 

Such a joy to meet Santa! Do you Believe?
Such a joy to meet Santa! Do you Believe?

As Santa walks through the cars, every child will receive a “Believe” sleigh bell. Once these are distributed, the staff play fun Christmas songs including those on the Polar Express soundtrack, concluding the experience with “Believe” the official song of the film, sung by Josh Groban.

After Santa departs, guests will have additional opportunities to meet Polar Express characters including the hobo, the know it all, and the hero boy.

With the Hobo!
With the Hobo!

 

With the Hero Boy
With the Hero Boy

In conclusion, I was completely under the spell of Christmas spirit after enjoying the Polar Express Train Experience. I loved every moment of being surrounded by fun and happy guests, staff who truly enjoy themselves, the delicious hot chocolate and feeling completely immersed into the story. I believe in Christmas and don’t need convincing like many devil’s advocates out there. Santa lives in all of us. It is our choice on whether we truly believe or not. After the Polar Express Train Experience, you truly will believe.

The Polar Express Train Experience
The Polar Express Train Experience

The St Jacobs Polar Express Train made it as #90 on our Heavenly Centenary Sites bucket list! Follow along with us and tick off some of these yourself. We look forward to seeing your experiences!

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Disclaimers:

Fill My Passport was a guest of the Waterloo Railway and Polar Express Train Experience. All views expressed in this post are our own and were not influenced in any way.

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