Holiday Nostalgia Rides

Holiday Nostalgia Train of R1/9 Cars, 2013

Holiday Nostalgia Rides

Celebrate the magic of New York City during the holidays with a ride back in time on our vintage fleet of subway cars and buses.

Vintage Train:

This holiday season, we continue the tradition of placing our vintage 1930s R1-9 train cars in regular service between Thanksgiving and New Year’s. Don’t miss your chance to travel through time – for just the cost of a MetroCard swipe!


As an ode to the holiday shopping season, our vintage trains will depart from 2nd Avenue on the F line in Lower Manhattan and run along 6th Avenue in Manhattan to 47th-50th/Rockefeller Center before heading up the Central Park West line, where the train will stop at 59th St – Columbus Circle before making its way up to 125th St on the A/C/D lines in Harlem.

Station Stops

The Nostalgia Train will be making express stops at:

  • 2nd Avenue (F line) 
  • Broadway – Lafayette Street / Bleecker Street
  • West 4th Street – Washington Square
  • 34th Street – Herald Square
  • 42nd Street – Bryant Park
  • 47th-50th Streets – Rockefeller Center
  • 7th Avenue
  • 59th Street – Columbus Circle
  • 125th Street (A/C/D lines) 


Sundays, November 25th, December 2nd, December 9th, December 16th, December 23rd, and December 30th

Depart 2nd Avenue on the F line in Lower Manhattan at:

  • 10 am
  • 12 pm
  • 2 pm
  • 4 pm

Depart 125th Street on the A/C/D line in Harlem at:

  • 11 am
  • 1 pm
  • 3 pm
  • 5 pm


When the IND subway — the first subway company operated by the City of New York — opened in 1932, it had a mission to move more people more quickly than its private competitors, the Interborough Rapid Transit Company (IRT) and the Brooklyn-Manhattan Transit Corporation (BMT). Over 1,000 nearly identical subway cars were delivered between 1930 and 1940 under contracts, R1, R4, R6, R7, and R9. The cars were modern for their time, fitting in very well with the IND’s Depression-Era Art Deco aesthetic, and each could hold nearly 300 passengers. Upon delivery, they featured rattan seats, paddle ceiling fans (installed before the age of air conditioning), incandescent light bulbs, roll signs, and period advertisements. These cars, which inspired Billy Strayhorn’s “Take the A Train”, went into service on the Eighth Avenue line (today’s A, C, E) in 1932 and ran until 1977. Today, they are preserved as part of the New York Transit Museum’s collection.

Unloading of R1 cars at 207th Street Yard, circa 1931. From New York Transit Museum Collections.

Vintage Buses:


Vintage buses will be in service on the M42 bus route, traveling both East Bound and West Bound along 42nd Street in Manhattan.

Additional vintage buses will be available to board and explore at Union Square and Herald Square.


Monday – Friday, 9AM to 5PM, December 3rd – December 21st

Vintage Buses

Four buses from the New York Transit Museum’s vintage fleet will be in rotation during the Holiday Nostalgia Rides.

  • Bus #3100 (1956)
  • Bus #100 (1959)
  • Bus #1059 (1961)
  • Bus #8466 (1966, rebuilt 1984)

Bus #3100, 1956. From New York Transit Museum Collections.

Please Note:
All Holiday Nostalgia Rides are weather permitting, and equipment is subject to change.