Hump Day Love: Santa Special

Our oldest son’s Godmother recently took him to the Santa Special at Essex Steam Train in Essex, CT so this is a review through her.  

Santa Special is the daytime alternative to the ever-so-popular North Pole Express event held at night.  It is also a cheaper alternative to those who can’t afford the North Pole Express.  The Santa Special is held at different times throughout the day, giving you the opportunity to choose which time is best for you.

Through their experience, I’m told that it was the perfect holiday activity for a 2-year-old.  It could go either way with dressed up characters for our son; either he loves them or hate them, so going during the day was a safer bet because it allowed him to see things more and the night time didn’t add to the potential fear of things.  Beyond seeing Santa, of course, there was also Mrs. Clause, Rudolph, a Penguin and elves.  Every child received a bell and together, the entire train sang along to Christmas carols with their bells such as Jingle Bells.  He was thoroughly engaged and excited about the entire adventure.  In particular, being on a train was a huge highlight for him.  Also, the length of the train ride is good too.  It was an hour long and for a two-year-old, even an hour can be a struggle.  However, they had enough things going on in that hour to keep him engaged and he didn’t get bored.  Next year though, we’ll probably step-up our game and do the North Pole Express.  I’m told that as great at the Santa Special is, the North Pole Express is really different and completely worth the experience.


Overall, the Santa Special is a recommended Holiday activity for those looking for a daytime activity, an affordable activity and especially for children 3 and under.

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