Elf Explorer

Join us on the Elf Explorer for a magical experience this Christmas!

The Keighley and Worth Valley Railway is proud to present a new event for 2022 – ‘The Elf Explorer’, A journey of festive discovery where the magic of Christmas comes to life!

Your experience begins when you arrive at Oxenhope station and are taken exploring through a winter wonderland by an Elf from the North Pole. You’ll then be able to write a list for Santa before boarding a steam train named The Elf Explorer for a fun-filled adventure. Father Christmas and his helpers will join you on board, visit every family, and if the children have been good, they’ll receive their first gift of the Christmas season.

In true Worth Valley Railway style, this journey will be full of atmosphere and won’t be an experience you’ll forget in a hurry. As usual everyone aboard will receive refreshments with something for the kids and something a little stronger for the adults!

There’s nothing quite like a magical steam train journey to get you in the mood for Christmas, so BOOK NOW for the Elf Explorer whilst tickets last.


Sat 26th November
Sun 27th November
Sat 3rd December
Sun 4th December
Sat 10th December
Sun 11th December
Sat 17th December
Sun 18th December
Thu 22nd December
Fri 23rd December
Sat 24th December

Event Information


In 2022 all Elf Explorer trains will depart from Oxenhope Station. We have limited car parking at Oxenhope station, and therefore you can arrive by the following means:

  • Book a car parking space (whilst spaces last) at Oxenhope when you book your Elf Explorer tickets. 
  • Park at Haworth Station or surrounding car parks and use our Park and Ride service to Oxenhope. You can also alight the Elf Explorer at Haworth later if you wish, rather than travelling back via park and ride services.

If you live locally, please use public transport to Oxenhope or one of our stations to use the park and ride train service.

The Park & Ride details are still to be confirmed and will be shared via email to the booking email.

At Oxenhope Station, you can pre-book a time allotted parking space.

Keighley StationStation Bridge, Keighley. BD21 4HPLimited free parking
Ingrow West StationSouth Street, Ingrow, Keighley. BD21 5AXLarge free car park
Haworth StationStation Road, Haworth, Keighley. BD22 8NJLarge pay & display car park
Oxenhope StationStation Road, Oxenhope, Keighley. BD22 9LBPre-booked parking only


We are returning to our traditional festive carriages this year, with Santa visiting you on the train. There are no longer any COVID restrictions on different households mixing, so individual compartments aren’t needed. Once arriving at Keighley Station, the Elves will board the train and give Santa a helping hand!


  • Santa’s depot Café will be open throughout the day at Oxenhope serving festive treats.
  • The Elf Explorer will have a full bar service on board, selling hot and cold drinks plus Real ale and other alcoholic drinks. 


All Elf Explorer services depart from Oxenhope Station; before boarding your festive journey, there is a Winter Wonderland experience with our elves.

Every effort will be made to ensure that steam locomotives haul our Elf Explorer services. The Elf Explorer service will operate a ‘Top & Tail’ with a steam locomotive on the Oxenhope end and a heritage diesel on the Keighley end to assist with operational needs.

However, should a steam locomotive be unavailable, we reserve the right to substitute a diesel locomotive without prior notice.

The Elf Explorer includes a visit to the Winter Wonderland before boarding a one-hour steam train journey from Oxenhope Station, with a visit from Santa onboard, festive entertainment and a present for the children.

The round trip from Oxenhope Station takes approximately one hour.

This year’s festive experience will have Gold & Silver Tickets; both tickets have the same entertainment experience: a visit from Santa & his Elves, a trip through the Winter Wonderland, a trip onboard the Elf Explorer, and a present for the children. The Gold Experience will be situated in the two carriages behind the steam locomotive, an extra goody bag & treats for the children.

You can only board the Elf Explorer at Oxenhope Station. However, you can park around Haworth and use the shuttle service.

The Elf Explorer journey has toilets on board and toilets at Oxenhope & Keighley Station.

The shuttle doesn’t have toilets, but all stations on the railway have facilities.

Inside the Exhibition Shed with the Winter Wonderland, our Pixie’s Pantry will be serving hot & cold drinks, with tasty treats & tempting snacks. On board the Elf Explorer, the Buffet Car will be well stocked with snacks, confectionery, hot & cold drinks with a selection of real ale, bottled cider, spirits & wine.

Dogs are not permitted onboard the Elf Explorer, apart from Assistance Dogs. Please let us know if you are bringing an Assistance Dog in your party.

If you want to book for more than 20 people on Elf Explorer, you can contact our booking office by filling in the form here. We will do our best, but tickets sell fast and getting large groups together can be tricky!

This year we have a limited number of Accessibility Seats; the railway uses rolling stock from the 1950s & 60s, but we have converted one of our coaches to have Accessibility Seating. These can only be booked by emailing our Booking Office by filling in this form, each train has space for a Wheelchair with two seats, so the maximum bookable is 3.

You must fill in the form and enter the system so seats are booked in order. Please do not ring the office.