The Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum has a few adventures planned for the Holiday Season. Along with their regular Missionary Ridge Local, they are offering the North Pole Limited and the Christmas Special. Although the weather seems a bit cold for riding a train, December is actually a great time to experience a bit of history and an old-fashion Christmas.
The regular Missionary Ridge Local typically runs only on Saturdays during the month of December, but it is a ride worth taking. The journey begins at Grand Junction Station and ends in East Chattanooga, where the locomotive rotates on a turntable in order to return to Grand Junction Station. The trip time is around an hour and for a cost of $16/adult and $10/child, it is an economical train ride. The train runs on an original track which crosses four bridges and runs through an 1858 tunnel. This time of the year, the lower number of riders allows for a more comfortable trip.
The North Pole Limited takes riders on a magical journey to an imaginary North Pole. While on this journey of a lifetime lighted displays, refreshments, storytelling and a jolly St. Nick will thrill children of all ages. This ride runs every Friday, Saturday and Sunday during the month of December at a cost of $24 a person (age 1 and up). For $48 a person, passengers can ride in “Santa’s Private Car” that includes an extended visit with Santa, hot chocolate and cookies. Tickets should be purchased in advanced for this journey.
The TVRM Dinner trains, especially the Christmas Special, are the ultimate in time reversal. Stepping aboard the train for this trip is like stepping back in time. The trip includes a four-course meal on board a restored 1924 dining car decorated in vintage Holiday decorations. The ride goes through areas of East Chattanooga and is almost a two-hour journey. The tickets begin at $60 a person and should be purchased in advance. These almost always sell out. There is also a Dinner train ride available for New Year’s Eve. Be sure to reserve tickets now for that.
Although a bit pricey, the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum train rides are the perfect way of doing something unique this Holiday Season. With a variety of options, there is a train ride that fits everyone’s budget, time constraints, and holiday wishes. Also the money from the tickets helps preserve an important part of Chattanooga’s history.
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