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How to Ride New York City's Historic Subway Trains and Buses During December 2013

December 3, 2013 at 10:33 AM | by | Comments (0)

'Tis the season for New York City to unearth its transportation gems in the name of holiday fun, as the Big Apple again runs their special annual historic subway trains and city buses.

The subway train is the main attraction, and though it's technically called the "Nostalgia Shoppers' Special Train," you'll hear it referred to as the "vintage train" much more often. Clanking down the rails between Queens and the East Village, the train is an amalgam of rolling stock from the 1930s through 1950s.

A ride on the train costs the same as every other MTA ride—$2.25—and passengers are allowed to hop on/off at any stop just as if it were a normal subway train; the big difference is that the vintage train quickly turns into a party!

We've been riding the historic rails ourselves every holiday season since 2010, and have witnessed many a shindig onboard. Oftentimes jazz quartets will hop on with their instruments and play for tips, while groups of vintage enthusiasts dressed in period attire attempt to dance against the sway of the train.

Catch it every Sunday in December, departing Queens Plaza at 10:44 AM, 12:14 PM, 1:43 PM, 3:14 PM, and 4:44 PM.

Where it stops:
Queens Plaza
Court Square-23 St
Lexington Ave/53 St
5 Ave/53 St
47-50 Sts/Rockefeller Center
42 St Bryant Park
34 St Herald Sq
23 St (6 Av)
14 St (6 Av)
West 4 St/Washington Square
Broadway-Lafayette St
2 Ave

For a similar experience, seek out NYC's holiday vintage buses along the M42. Running on the route from Monday to Friday, December 2-20, 9am to 7pm, will be buses from the 1950s through 1980s. Onboard, "everything will be original except the bus operator and the fare box." That's good news, considering a new fare box means the buses accept Metrocards. Do note that rain or snow will postpone the service, as "the buses are old and catch cold easily."

Interested in visiting more of NYC's past? On December 8, the Queens Historical Society is running a Holiday Historic House Trolley Tour to visit seven landmarked sites, like a Victorian Garden and the Louis Armstrong House Museum.

[Photos: Jaunted]

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