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Vintage Railroads of the Isle of Man

6 Days from $1,015per
person
Well organised. Excellent hotel. Good itinerary
Rev R Postill
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You are viewing the 2020 itinerary

Itineraries and pricing may vary by departure year

(Tour code: MXB20)

Enjoy historic railroads of the Isle of Man

The Isle of Man is famous for its stunning coastline, superb sandy beaches, spectacular scenery and gentle pace of life. This charming island also boasts some of the most impressive heritage railroads found anywhere in the British Isles, not to mention the historic horse-drawn trams.

Highlights
  • Douglas
  • Horse-drawn tram ride
  • Laxey
  • Snaefell Mountain Railroad
  • Manx Electric Railroad
  • Peel
  • Isle of Man Steam Railroad
  • Port Erin
  • Castletown
What’s Included
  • Standard Class Rail
    Heritage Rail Excursions
  • 4* Hotel Accommodation
    Breakfast Every Day
    Evening Meals
  • Selected Departures Guaranteed

Vintage Railroads of the Isle of Man 2020Tour Details

Print Itinerary
Day 1 Douglas
Douglas

Heysham to the Isle of Man by ferry

We meet in Heysham, Lancashire, ahead of our early afternoon ferry journey to the Isle of Man. Heysham is easily accessible from other parts of the UK and the train from Lancaster arrives straight into Heysham ferry terminal. Arriving into Douglas sea terminal, porters collect our luggage as we walk the short distance along the waterfront to the Claremont Hotel, our base for the next five nights. The hotel occupies a superb location on Douglas' sea-front promenade, overlooking the impressive two-mile sweep of Douglas Bay.

Includes:
  • Dinner
Day 2 Snaefell Mountain Railroad
Snaefell Mountain Railroad

Laxey and Snaefell Mountain Railroad

Our excursion today takes us to the summit of the island's only mountain: Snaefell. We begin with a journey north along Douglas promenade, traveling by historic horse-drawn tram*. The trams, known locally as 'toast racks', have been running since 1876 and remain a testimony to Victorian engineering, as popular today as they were when first introduced. We then board an electric train to take us to the fishing village of Laxey.

Here we board the Snaefell Mountain Railroad - the only electric mountain railroad in the British Isles, dating from 1895. The journey takes us all the way to the summit of Snaefell at 2,036 feet. On a clear day you can see England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

A café at the summit offers the opportunity for you to purchase lunch while enjoying the stunning views. We then return to Laxey, where you have time to explore. Separated into two parts, the main village and Old Laxey, which surrounds the picturesque tidal harbor, the town is home to the Laxey Wheel, the world's largest working waterwheel.

The 'Lady Isabella' was built in 1854 to pump water from Laxey's lead and zinc mines. It is possible to climb the steep spiral staircase to view the working wheel from the platform above. The wheel is one of the iconic images of the Isle of Man and to see it from above and in action is a fascinating experience. Later we make our way back to Douglas by electric train.

*Please note that the horse-drawn trams may not operate on the April and October departures.

Includes:
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 3 The Manx Electric Railroad
The Manx Electric Railroad

The Manx Electric Railroad and Peel

Today we take the coach to Peel - an old-fashioned fishing port whose quaint, narrow streets lead to its deep harbor. On the way you call at Tynwald Hill, in the village of St John's, where you see the Church of St John and the Tynwald Exhibition. The Tynwald claims to be over 1,000 years old with the earliest records dating back to 1422.

A parliamentary assembly, the Tynwald has operated under Celtic and Viking rule as an institution designed not to pass laws but rather to settle local disputes and as a community forum. The museum charts the history of this fascinating political entity and proves a delight to discover.

We then arrive in Peel. The thriving fishing industry and many smokehouses have made Peel famous for its kippers. During our time here, you may wish to visit Peel Castle, located on St Patrick's Isle, which dates back to the 11th century, or the House of Manannan, a museum that explores the island's Celtic, Viking and maritime heritage, which you can explore thanks to your included Heritage Explorer Pass. Alternately, seek out the kippers, which are regarded to be some of the finest in the country.

After some interdependent sightseeing, we enjoy a journey on the full length of the Manx Electric Railroad from Ramsey to Douglas. The railroad is recognized as the longest narrow-gauge vintage railroad in the British Isles, taking you on a 17-mile journey through glorious countryside, across gorse-topped hills and along the stunning shores of the east coast on our way to Douglas. We make this journey traveling in the oldest working tramcars in the world.

 

Includes:
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Days 4-5 The Isle of Man Steam Railroad
The Isle of Man Steam Railroad

The Isle of Man Steam Railroad

This morning we walk to Douglas railroad station to board the Isle of Man Steam Railroad, the island's oldest Victorian rail system. The mesmerising steam-hauled journey in restored heritage carriages takes us through verdant countryside, beside shimmering seaside scenery and past small towns and old-fashioned fishing ports. We pull into the station in Port Erin, an imposing town set within a beautiful bay on the south west point of the island. After time to explore, we are collected by coach for a tour of the headland overlooking the spectacular Calf of Man.

This terrific corner of the island is home to an array of delightful wildlife including seals and a wide variety of nesting birds. After touring the prominentary, we travel to Castletown, the island's ancient capital. Castle Rushen, a magnificently preserved medieval fortress, dominates the town and merits a visit during our time here, as do the Nautical Museum and the Old House of Keys. Entrance to all three sites is included with your Heritage Explorer Pass.

Day 5 is free to enjoy the island at leisure. An included Explorer Pass allows you to travel on the local trains and buses (payable locally). As the island is brimming with heritage and fantastic scenery, you are never without something interesting to see and do. One popular option is a tour of the Gaiety Theater, the Isle of Man's opera house. Drenched in Edwardian splendour, this impressive room plays host to all manner of productions, and many of its rooms and exterior hark back to that age, with a wonderful main room decked out in splendid gold. Alternatively, perhaps visit the steam train sheds, which first opened in 1900.

Your included Heritage pass also allows you to explore a myriad of fascinating National Heritage sites on the island. One option is to visit the captivating Grove Museum. The preserved former home of the Gibb sisters, who lived here until the 1970s, the house has been practically untouched since Victorian times, granting its visitors a unique and compelling glimpse into the past. Exploring the house and grounds is like taking a step back in time, as you discover authentic Victorian furniture, clothing, farming equipment, and more.

Includes:
  • Day 4 - Breakfast, Dinner
  • Day 5 - Breakfast, Dinner
Day 6 Douglas
Douglas

The Journey Home

After our breakfast, we make our way back to Douglas Sea Terminal. We arrive back into Heysham just after midday, where our tour concludes. You are then free to leave Heysham at your leisure.

 

Includes:
  • Breakfast
Recommended Airports Flights
Flights

Recommended Airports

For this tour, we recommend arriving to, and departing from, Manchester airport Manchester is approximately 70 miles from your start and end point.

Please note

Please be aware that the order of the excursions may be different than appears here.

MXB1802, MXB1803, MXB1809, MXB1811, MXB1813, MXB1817
DAY 2 - MANX ELECTRIC RAILROAD - RAMSEY TO SOUGLAS
DAY 3 - ELECTRIC RAILROAD - DOUGLAS TO LAXEY RETURN
DAY 4 - ISLE OF MAN STEAM RAILROAD - DOUGLAS TO PORT ERIN

MXB1804
DAY 2 - MANX ELECTRIC RAILROAD - RAMSEY TO SOUGLAS
DAY 3 - ELECTRIC RAILROAD - DOUGLAS TO LAXEY RETURN
DAY 5 - ISLE OF MAN STEAM RAILROAD - DOUGLAS TO PORT ERIN

MXB1805
DAY 2 - MANX ELECTRIC RAILROAD - RAMSEY TO SOUGLAS
DAY 3 - ISLE OF MAN STEAM RAILROAD - DOUGLAS TO PORT ERIN
DAY 4 - ELECTRIC RAILROAD - DOUGLAS TO LAXEY RETURN

MXB1808, MXB1819, MXB1822
DAY 2 - ISLE OF MAN STEAM RAILROAD - DOUGLAS TO PORT ERIN
DAY 3 - MANX ELECTRIC RAILROAD - RAMSEY TO SOUGLAS
DAY 4 - ELECTRIC RAILROAD - DOUGLAS TO LAXEY RETURN

MXB1816
DAY 2 - ELECTRIC RAILROAD - DOUGLAS TO LAXEY RETURN
DAY 4 - ISLE OF MAN STEAM RAILROAD - DOUGLAS TO PORT ERIN
DAY 5 - MANX ELECTRIC RAILROAD - RAMSEY TO SOUGLAS

Departure Times

Provisional departure and return times, where available, can be found together with our dates and prices by clicking on the 'Prices & Availability' button. We write to all booked customers approximately 10 weeks prior to the start of their tour to advise the exact departure and return time for their particular group.

What’s included

An escorted experience and travel during your tour

  • The services of a professional Tour Manager from start to finish
  • Standard Class rail travel
  • Return ferry from Heysham to Douglas

Comfortable accommodation in your destination

  • 5 nights' hotel accommodation at the 4-Star Claremont Hotel in Douglas

Delicious meals included

  • 10 meals including 5 breakfasts and 5 dinners, including 1 farewell dinner in Douglas

 

Exciting excursions and free time to explore

  • A journey on the Douglas Promenade by Horse- drawn tram
  • Excursions on the Snaefell Mountain Railroad, the Manx Electric Railroad and the Isle of Man Steam Railroad
  • Coach excursions to Peel and Castletown

Not Included

  • Flights and Airport transfers

 

What our customers think
98%

of travelers would recommend this tour

Tour Rating

based on 21 verified reviews

Dimitri Zgonis
Dimitri
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Yung-Mei
Vaugnel Fletcher
Vaugnel
Vintage Railroads of the Isle of Man

Enjoy historic railroads of the Isle of Man

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