Botanical Garden Train Show 2024

Botanical Garden Train Show returns bigger than ever with more trains and an all-new, outdoor train display.

New York Christmas 2024 all you need to know

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Botanical Garden Train Show returns bigger than ever with more trains and an all-new, outdoor train display. Start on the lawn to capture your perfect holiday photos at our outdoor mountainscapes and then watch trains zip past nearly 200 iconic New York landmarks under the warmth of the Conservatory.

After dark, join us for NYBG GLOW and discover the beauty of our landscape and historic buildings, illuminated across the grounds. And don’t miss the return of our fan-favorite Bar Car Nights, 21-and-over evenings featuring the Holiday Train Show and curated cocktails. These special evenings feature music, experiences, food, and more—making for the ultimate night out this season.

Meet the Artists of Botanical Garden Train Show 2024

What one may see as just a piece of bark or a fallen berry, Laura Busse Dolan and the creative team at Applied Imagination envision as stone on the Brooklyn Bridge or an ornament on St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

In 1991, Paul Busse founded Applied Imagination. Applied Imagination was a great artistic convergence of Paul’s work with landscaping, garden railroads, and his unique use of plant material to create “botanical architecture.” Since Paul Busse first brought his wondrous landscapes of trains and plant-based structures to The New York Botanical Garden with the first Holiday Train Show® in 1992, Applied Imagination has gone on to produce special exhibits for many other venues around the country.

Paul is now retired, and the company is owned and operated by his daughter, Laura Busse Dolan. On a walk through the woods on the Applied Imagination property in Alexandria, Kentucky, Laura and the artists of Applied Imagination inevitably bring back interesting tidbits that can be used in crafting one of their magical displays.

Discover the Landmarks

Nearly 200 scaled iconic buildings and structures such as the Brooklyn Bridge, Yankee Stadium, and the Statue of Liberty are displayed under thousands of twinkling lights. Step into a miniature city where famed New York architecture is re-created using bark, leaves, and other natural materials.

The addition of the all-new display of model trains traversing towering mountainscapes sited on the Haupt Conservatory Lawn expands the exhibition, creating an indoor and outdoor experience, and hearkens back to the outdoor roots of the Holiday Train Show, which began in 1992. It’s sure to be an ideal location for holiday photos!

Catch the Trains

See more than 25 G-scale model trains and trolleys hum along nearly a half-mile of track. Don’t forget to look up—NYC bridges come together to create an aerial display of trains soaring overhead and outdoors on our all-new Conservatory Lawn display.

American steam engines, streetcars from the late 1800s, and modern freight and passenger trains travel along overhead trestles, through tunnels, and across familiar NYC structures, providing merriment for all ages.