Sunday, November 27, 2016

The Polar Express!

The Polar Express and the Smokey Mountains was a magical way to start our Christmas holidays!

We ate a late Thanksgiving dinner with the family Thursday and then rushed home to pack for our little adventure into the mountains. 

We stayed in Nantahala Falling Waters Yurt Village for the night after our amazing ride on the Polar Express in Bryson City.  I love the name of the town Bryson City, it sounds so exciting and it was!  The little town was bustling with excitement, people were shopping, eating and playing in the streets, most with their jammies on waiting for their turn to hop on the Polar Express.  All this while the train was coming and going from the station filled with children, their parents and even grandparents to travel to the North Pole.  It was a cold evening that added to the setting of the night and when the train whistle blew it was loud!

We hopped on the train around 6:35pm, which is the time I highly recommend.  It was good and dark and pretty cold.  We road first class on the Carolina Shine car and it was worth the extra bucks!  We got hot chocolate in cool Polar Express mugs with homemade chocolate cookies, goodie bags, dancing waiters, sung carols, a chance to talk with Santa who gave out a silver bell to everyone!  It was great and the looks on the girls faces was worth every penny!

FYI, if you are interested, there was great shopping in the Bryson City near the train depot.  A great way to get your Christmas shopping started!

We spent the afternoon at the yurt in Nantahala Falling Waters in the Smokey Mountains.  Thankfully the weather was perfect with a warm day, cold night and no rain!  The village was cute and quaint with 8 yurts to choose from.  We got No. 8 up on the highest spot.  It was up a steep rock stepping stone hill on a little cliff overlooking the water and small waterfall below.  At night the wind was howling and the yurt was a like a fancy big tent with a deck.  It was quaint, decorated very well and towels and sheets provided!  It was a short walk to the very clean and warm bathhouse.  We were slightly separated from the yurt community but not too much.  Every two yurts had a communal camp ring and at the bathhouse there was a communal area with games and chairs and a drink machine. 



Five of us fit comfortably in the yurt!  There was queen bed and a queen futon to sleep on, sheets, towels, blankets and coffee for all! 



There were plenty of places to put your stuff...

There was a little frig and coffee maker.


Each yurt had a bench to sit and read or just chill in the woods...


The doors were cool...double doors with curtains (code to unlock door so you don't have to fool with a key) that stepped out onto the deck.


The forest was green, red, orange and yellow.  We were surprised how much color was still around and we were totally not affected by the fires in no way visually.  The air was clear.  The only thing we couldn't do was build a fire of any kind...there was a burning band because of no rain and the existing fires.


There was a little lake, outside games, trails to follow and look outs to enjoy.







Bryson City shops at night!



We even got a golden ticket that the conductor punched just like the movie!





The girls had so much fun on our "kick off the Christmas holidays" trip that they said (while on the train) "we have to do this next year!"  Then when we got home they decided to draw pictures about the trip!  We had a great time and will be booking our trip soon for next year! 

Yurts
The Polar Express

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