Wales is home to an incredible collection of steam trains, many of which are still in operation today. Visitors can take trips on beautiful, historic trains and enjoy stunning views of the Welsh landscape as they travel through the country.
North Wales in particular is an ideal destination for steam train enthusiasts; some of the most famous train lines in the world can be found here. Take a step back in time and experience steam trains in all their glory with a once in a lifetime trip. Here are our top tips for travellers looking for something totally unique.
There are so many exciting railway and transport inspired attractions to enjoy in Llandudno, many of which are within easy reach of our hotels. Stay on the seafront at the County Hotel or the Marine Hotel and you’ll be in the ideal spot to take advantage of everything the area has to offer.
Stay at the County Hotel or the Marine Hotel and you won’t just have access to a world-famous beachfront. There are also great shops and restaurants to explore, and a whole host of fun activities to get stuck into. Trail-riding and white-water rafting trips are available nearby, and there are even zip-wires for thrillseekers.
Llandudno also offers alternative outdoor activities, with historic castles to wander around, cosy tea rooms to relax in, and many great outdoor adventures to be had in beautiful parks and gardens. And of course we can’t forget about the steam train experiences of the Great Little Trains of Wales, which are easily accessible from both the County and Marine hotels.
The Snowdon Mountain Railway is one of the most famous in Wales. Located just 42 minutes from Llandudno, the railway offers stylish travel on traditional diesel locomotives. There are daily departures from April until October, and visitors are encouraged to book tickets for their journeys in advance. Book early enough and you’ll be able to take advantage of the early bird discount.
Stretching for 2.5 miles, the Llanberis Lake Railway is a historic railway taking travellers on a journey along the northern shore of Llyn Padarn. From your seat you’ll catch a glimpse of Dolbadarn Castle, which dates back to the 13th century. Located in the Snowdonia National Park, this railway is one of the most picturesque in the country – and it’s only 44 minutes from Llandudno.
Travel a little further and you’ll find the Ffestiniog and Welsh Highland Railway. The railway is just over an hour away from Llandudno, and takes visitors right into the Snowdonia National Park. There are several interesting tourist attractions en route, such as Beddgelert and the Aberglaslyn Pass.
Bala Lake Railway is the one to visit if you’d like to enjoy impressive views over the waters of Gwynedd’s Bala Lake. This railway is 1 hour 19 minutes from Llandudno, and spans a distance of 4.5 miles. There are also regular events taking place on the railway in the summer months, for steam train enthusiasts young and old.
The two-mile long Fairbourne Steam Railway offers something completely different. Connecting the pretty village of Fairbourne to the Barmouth Ferry railway station, at the end of a peninsula, it’s a brilliant place to start your day out in the area. Enjoy a trip on the railway and then board the ferry to Barmouth for a day at the seaside. It’s just 1 hour and 35 minutes from Llandudno.
If you’re looking for a traditional steam train experience, you won’t want to miss the Corris Steam Railway. Located an hour and 38 minutes from Llandudno, this old fashioned railway is ideal for families and guests of all ages. From your seat on board you’ll see grazing sheep, and journey through beautiful unspoilt woodlands as you journey back in time on a historic locomotive.
Stay at the Imperial Tenby Hotel and you’ll be moments from the fantastic Tenby steam train experiences. Regularly voted amongst the best days out in the area, these attractions are perfect for children and adults alike. Take your pick from the different railways within easy reach of your hotel and make the most of what Tenby has to offer.
The Brecon Mountain Railway is enormously popular with tourists and locals alike. This traditional railway journeys along the south of the Brecon Beacons, connecting to Torpantau railway station. It’s located an hour and 39 minutes from Tenby, so it’s a great destination for those staying at the Imperial Tenby Hotel.
Immerse yourself in the history of the area as you enjoy a day out on a world famous Welsh steam train. With so many incredible railways to choose from, you’ll be spoilt for choice when you stay with us. If you’re interested in hearing more about local railways, or you’d like further information on how to book your tickets, get in touch with our team.