Candy Cane Express Virginia City

Candy Cane Express Train Review

Thank you to Virginia & Truckee Railroad for hosting us. As always all opinions are honest and our own. Read our disclosure.

We recently got the opportunity to ride the V&T Candy Cane Express Train.  This is a Christmas-themed train ran by the Virginia & Truckee Railroad that is located in Virginia City.

The V&T Candy Cane Express leaves from the Virginia City station and runs annually on select weekends during the holiday season.

The entire station is Christmas-themed and Santa is even there! My kids are 5, 4, and 8 years old and our little family of five had such a great time.

I’m giving a breakdown of our experience.

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Candy Cane Express Train 

The train ride is about 60 minutes long. You venture 30 minutes out and then 30 minutes back to the station.  During the train ride, the entertainment includes Christmas songs, a choice of hot cocoa or cider, sugar or chocolate chip cookies, and the conductor even reads a Christmas story! The candy cane sisters are so sweet and do a great job during the train ride.

Everyone on the train really seems to enjoy themselves and I loved how the ladies and conductor had a microphone they used during songs and story time so everyone could hear them!  They also give all the kids a postcard and candy cane pen so they can write a letter to Santa while on the train.

And of course, as you leave the train they give everyone a candy cane!  I mean how can they call it a candy cane express without one right?

Like The Polar Express, the Candy Cane Express train ride kept my kids entertained the entire time.

2023 Season Dates

The 2023 season will run on weekends from November 24- December 24th, 2023.

Nov. 24, 25 and Dec. 2, 3, 9, 10, 16, 17 & the Grand Finale 23, 24 

On each date you have three different times to choose from . 


Purchase your tickets beforehand online. By reserving online you pick-up inside the depot.  If they don’t sell out before the day of your ride, you can purchase tickets directly at the depot.

Given that this event is extremely popular it will sell out, I suggest booking ahead of time.

Ticket Prices

Tickets are sold in groups this year and vary in price.  See below for more price options. Tickets start at $56 for a bench seat (2 seats). 


Parking at the station is free.  I highly suggest planning to arrive at the station early to get your parking spot.  The parking lot is located directly across the street from the station. Did I mention it was free to park?  

Not only that, but the day we went was cold and snowy and I have very small children so the closer we could park the better! We arrived approximately 30 minutes early and had no trouble finding parking.


Seating is assigned this year versus years past it was first come first serve. It’s a super fun setting and the seats are able to face each other making it fun for large parties and families to enjoy the ride together!

Tips For Your Visit

Dress Warm

The train is heated but waiting in line to board is outside with no cover. Dress warm!  It was snowing the day we went which was super fun, but we made sure to bundle up and wear our snow boots!  We all also had gloves and hats on as well.

During the train ride we were comfortable enough to take off our jackets and gloves.   

candy cane express train ride


There are no restrooms on the train, so make sure you and your kiddos use the restroom at the depot before boarding.

candy cane express train in virginia city


Santa is not on the train! He is at his workshop! Halfway through the train ride, you’ll stop at Santa’s workshop.  You don’t get off of the train.  Santa tells a story and even called out the names of all the kids on the train! The kids loved hearing their names.  

Check out this article for places to get your pictures taken with Santa

The Depot  

At the depot, there is a small souvenir shop, where you can find a small assortment of train-themed items.  They accept both cash or card.

I was super impressed with the entire Candy Cane Experience!  From arriving at the station to see waving elves to the singing on the train, I thought they did a wonderful job!  It was also fun to attend while there was snow on the ground.

My 4-year old loved hitting me with snowballs as we waited in line to board.  The V&T Candy Cane Express is a great budget-friendly Christmas activity that is fun for the whole family!

Do you have tickets for the Candy Cane Express Train?

Have you been on the Candy Cane Express Train? This is a wonderful family activity for the holidays!


Kacey Queen is a co-founder of Nevada Moms

Kacey received her bachelor's in Psychology while cheering for the University of Oregon. They moved to Reno in 2014 and have loved it ever since. She is a dedicated homeschooling mother to her three children.

She serves on the board for Northern Nevada Health Systems, and Northern Nevada Sports and Recreation, and she is passionate about her community.

Kacey loves exploring with her family and finding family-friendly events and activities! A few of her favorite things include family adventures, exploring the outdoors, working out, local coffee shops, and dessert!