Holiday Train ShowNovember 17, 2012-January 13, 2013
This cherished tradition delights people of all ages. Marvel at the charming model trains and New York landmark replicas in the warm Conservatory, stroll the spectacular grounds, decorate (and eat!) gingersnaps, and break for lunch and hot chocolate. Get Your Tickets!
About the Holiday Train Show
More landmarks and trains than ever before!
The enchanting setting of the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory showcases more than 140 scaled iconic buildings and structures under thousands of twinkling lights. Artistically crafted by Paul Busse's team at Applied Imagination, the landmarks are made of natural materials such as bark, twigs, stems, fruits, seeds, and pine cones and include the original Penn Station and Yankee Stadium, Radio City Music Hall, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, The New York Public Library on 42nd Street, and the Brooklyn Bridge.
Large scale model trains cover a wide variety of ground--a quarter-mile of track, to be specific. Late-1800s American steam engines and streetcars travel alongside modern freight and high-speed passenger trains and trolleys. Cable cars travel over the Conservatory’s reflecting pool. Even Thomas the Tank Engine™ joins the fleets, which traverse across rustic bridges, along overhead trestles, through tunnels, and past waterfalls that cascade into flowing creeks.
The Artist's Studio
Back by popular demand, The Artist’s Studio shows how the replicas are constructed and displays models in varying stages of completion, from the framing of the landmark structures to the addition of plant part details such as magnolia leaf roof shingles and radish seed marquee lights.
New This Year
- A replica of Macy’s flagship location (“the miracle on 34th Street”) greets you as you enter the Haupt Conservatory
- Keep an eye out for a working model of the Roosevelt Island Tram at the back of the Conservatory Palm Dome pool
- The Artist’s Studio features two botanically inspired trolleys and a train, each running on their own separate tracks
- Also in The Artist's Studio, see Applied Imagination's other creations, including replicas of national and international sites and landmarks such as the Sphinx, Route 66 Diner, the Parthenon, and the Boston Harbor Lighthouse
Dates and times vary.
Children explore the spices that make up a classic gingerbread recipe. Kids can step inside a child-sized gingerbread playhouse and also decorate a gingersnap cookie with frosting and candies. All ages will enjoy viewing a display of gingerbread houses made by New York City-area bakers.
Puppet shows, Bar Car Nights, and Thomas and Friends™ make special appearances this year.
Founding Sponsors: Victoria and Robert Zoellner
Major Sponsor: Alpine Associates Advisors
Generous support also provided by the Karen Katen Foundation
Additional support provided by Brooks Brothers
All-Garden Pass tickets for the Holiday Train Show start at $20 for Adults and $10 for Kids 2-12. See prices by date.
Advance reservations are strongly recommended as tickets do sell out. Tickets are timed and sold in 15 minute increments.
Holiday Train Show Hours
- Weekdays: Tuesday–Friday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
- Weekends: 10 a.m.–7 p.m., including Friday, November 23 (day after Thanksgiving)
- Holiday Weeks (Monday, December 17–Tuesday, January 1): 10 a.m.–7 p.m.
- Early closings: December 14 and 24; 3 p.m.
- Closed: November 22 (Thanksgiving) and December 25 (Christmas)
Tips to Enhance Your Visit
- Holiday Weeks (December 17–January 1) are traditionally the busiest times at the show. Opt for days before or after that period.
- Our timed-ticket system helps visitor flow through the show. Purchase tickets online to select your date and time.
- Avoid lines at the gate by purchasing your tickets online and printing them yourself at home.
- Traveling with little ones? Strollers cannot be taken into the Conservatory, so please plan accordingly.
About the Designer
Paul Busse and his team at Applied Imagination have collaborated with the Garden since the inception of the Holiday Train Show in 1992. The collection now numbers more than 140 replicas!