A Storybook Adventure of Holiday Wonder - Visit Sedona Blog

A Storybook Adventure of Holiday Wonder

Aboard Verde Canyon Railroad’s Magical Christmas Journey™

Conveniently located just outside of Sedona, Arizona, the Verde Canyon Railroad’s Magical Christmas Journey™ is a fresh, fun take on holiday trains, featuring an all-original storybook journey highlighting the railroad’s famed relationship with local wildlife.  The magic of Christmas is alive and well aboard Verde Canyon Railroad. The wonder of the holiday season begins on Santa’s secret tracks to the heart of the North Pole. Everyone knows Santa’s main ride is a sleigh, but surprise! He rides a train too! 

The trip to the North Pole is merely one brilliant facet of the festive evening experience. The story begins with the extensively illuminated depot and miniature Birds-Eye Village. Prior to boarding, children can strap on a pair of eagle wings and soar through an adorable village featuring 10 tiny houses on a town square. The kids can imagine what Flurry, our live bald eagle, sees when in flight. This unique aspect is inspired by Verde Canyon Railroad’s relationship with Liberty Wildlife of Arizona who provides an educational bald eagle that visits Verde Canyon Railroad regularly. Adults are not to be left out, as the details of this charming tiny town provide entertainment for everyone.

All are encouraged to come decked in their outrageous Christmas fashions, ranging from wild “ugly sweaters,” funny antlers and twinkly hats, to several generations sporting matching sweatshirts or jammies. Passengers will find an abundance of fun photo-ops around the depot grounds and savor festive food and beverages that will satisfy your seasonal cravings. The train, transformed into a holiday vision, extensively decorated on both the indoor and open-air cars, beckons passengers to board for the journey to pick up a VSP (Very Special Passenger) eagerly awaiting the train’s arrival at the North Pole: Santa Claus! 

As soon as the train departs the Clarkdale depot, happy elves encourage everyone to venture onto the open-air viewing cars to make a wish when traveling through the Magical Tunnel, and wave to the illuminated Arizona animals that dance along the track, pointing the way to Santa’s home. 

Slowly rolling up on the North Pole, life-size buildings punctuate the star-filled high desert darkness with brilliant lights and colors, wit, and whimsy. Not only do the kiddos catch a glimpse of where all the magic happens … Santa’s Workshop, Mrs. Claus’ Bakery and the Polar Post Office where Christmas dreams are delivered, but they’ll discover where Rudolph learned his tricks … the Reindeer Flight School complete with a well-lit landing strip! And those wacky elves, entertaining passengers and assisting Santa, all earned their talents at the Elf Training School. Wonder just where do all those zany Christmas sweaters come from? The Ugly Sweater Factory of course! For those misbehaving, beware because Santa has a Naughty Kids Coal Mine. 

Mrs. Claus and acrobatic elves will wave good-bye to Santa Claus as he boards the train for the return trip to Clarkdale. Before you know it, Santa is visiting all of the families onboard and sharing a small gift with each child. 

The Magical Christmas Journey™ aboard Verde Canyon Railroad is a one-of-a-kind! You won’t experience this all-original holiday adventure anywhere else. With departures at 5:30 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. starting December 3rd, the Magical Christmas Journey’s one-hour length is the perfect excursion for even the tiniest tot.

It’s the Magical Christmas Journey at Verde Canyon Railroad