Through a child's eyes
Perhaps the best way to rekindle the wonder of Christmas is to view it through the eyes of a child. One of the best family experiences is to dress the kids in PJs and answer the conductor's "All aboard" call for a journey to North Pole City aboard the Polar Express. The trip brings to life Chris Van Allsburg's children's book of the same name. Holiday decorations, hot cocoa and cookies, a reading of the beloved classic, a special gift, and, of course, a meeting with Santa are part of most trips. This is an especially popular event and sells out fast, but local accommodations often have tickets as part of packages. If you can't snag tickets for this season, plan now for next year.
Rides take place in Maine (Narrow Gauge Railroad, Portland, $30.25 adult, $28.25 child, 207 828-1234 ext. 233, or 207-828-0814 , info, 207-842-0800 reservations, www.mngrr.org); New Hampshire (Conway Scenic Railway, North Conway, and Hobo Railroad, Lincoln, tickets are issued by lottery only www.conwayscenic.com); Rhode Island (Blackstone Valley Train, Cumberland, $35, 401-724-2200, www.tourblackstone.com) and (Newport Dinner Train, Newport, $26.95 adult, $18.95 child, 800-398-7427, www.newportdinnertrain.com), and Vermont (Champlain Valley Flyer, Burlington, $18, www.vtchildrenstrust.org).