Have went to the North Pole by way of the Great Smokey Mountains Railroad twice over the past 3 years. All the staff was friendly and especially Santa which spent a lot more time on our "Standard" car than I thought he would. Wasn't in a big hurry and seemed to enjoy his job. The town itself is fantastic small town. Be sure to look up the woodworker adjacent to the train depot. He works on wooden toys and looks like Santa's twin. The only difference between the trips we have made is Santa's helpers on the cars. Some take it seriously while others appear to be just another job. As far as following the movie it really doesn't. You do ride a train and get hot chocolate and a treat, pickup Santa from a plywood town and ride back to the depot. If you are expecting this adventure to go along with the book or movie you will be let down. Overall a good experience and the look on my kids face was worth every penny.
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