It’s Huntsville’s very own version of The Polar Express (except adults are allowed).
No matter how you travel to visit Santa, it’s a magical, wonder-filled experience. Add in a historic train, one twinkling with more than 1,000 lights, and a ride to the end of the line where Santa awaits the tales of young believers in a cozy cabin, and it becomes positively enchanting.
A Portage Flyer Christmas is an annual tradition for many families. The journey begins at the Rotary Village Station at Muskoka Heritage Place where cheerful carols and complimentary hot chocolate and cookies, put visitors in the holiday spirit.
Once you’ve purchased your ticket at the station—it’s just five dollars per person (Santa pays the tax)—you can ride the historic Portage Flyer as many times as you want, at least until the big guy has to return to the North Pole to finish Christmas Eve preparations. There’s no naughty list here! Santa welcomes believers of all ages to tell their side of the story.
Remember to dress warmly, though—the Portage Flyer’s early-1900s-era open-air cars offer a beautiful but sometimes chilly view of the adjacent Muskoka River.
A Portage Flyer Christmas happens on one night only, always the Saturday evening before Christmas Eve. This year, you can visit the jolly old elf on Saturday, December 22 from 5-8 p.m. The last train leaves the station (100 Forbes Hill Drive) at 7:30 p.m. Arrive early if you’re able—it’s a popular event and there is no reserved seating or advance ticket sales. Plenty of free parking is available across the road on Forbes Hill Drive, at the Active Living Centre, at the Canada Summit Centre, or across from the main entrance to Muskoka Heritage Place.
Even though it’s an open-air event, smoking isn’t permitted on town property. Registered service animals are welcome but please leave your pets at home.
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