One of the most delightful things about the holiday season is the return of the Santa Express in Boone, Iowa.

The Boone & Scenic Valley Railroad is about a two hour drive from Cedar Rapids, and for parents with small kids, this is definitely a day trip worth booking.

Once there, the family will travel by train to the North Pole on an adventure they'll remember for years. Kids (and grown ups) are encouraged to wear their pajamas while they enjoy holiday stories and songs during the train ride.

Treats include hot cocoa and cookies, and of course a chance to meet Santa when they arrive. Tickets are on sale now but the get gobbled up quick.

The Boone & Scenic Valley Railroad is an historical museum that is open year round with many other special train excursions, including dinner trains, picnic trains, and even dessert trains.

It's run by the Iowa Railroad Historical Society and is a 501c3 non-profit organization.

[source: Boone & Scenic Valley Railroad]