Welsh Highland Railway
c/o Harbour Station,
Telephone 01766 516000
Fax 01766 516005
Satnav Postcode: LL55 2YD
Map Link: Here
The Welsh Highland Railway - train travel as
it used to be
Taking a trip on the new Welsh Highland Railway has to be one of
the most spectacular ways to see the awe-inspiring scenery of the
Snowdonia National Park.
Sitting in the comfort of one of the first class Pullman carriages
is surely one of the finest experiences in North Wales, as is the
excitement of riding in one of the open carriages behind the world's
most powerful narrow gauge steam locomotives, the Beyer Garratt
in at over 60 tons, these magnificent locos are more powerful than
many standard gauge steam engines and the sound of them working
hard up the toughest railway in the UK is an experience to be savoured
by any steam enthusiast - a solid six miles of 1 in 40 gradient
is as tough as it gets.
Starting from beneath the castle walls in historic Caernarfon, the
railway climbs to the foot of Snowdon before dropping again to sea
level at the harbour in Porthmadog. The original railway closed
in 1936, but has now been completely rebuilt by volunteers at a
cost of £28 million.
With the 25 mile line now complete, together with a new £1.25 million two-platform layout at Harbour Station at Porthmadog (complete with a substantial semaphore signalling installation), it is now possible to connect with the world-famous Ffestiniog Railway and experience 40 unbroken miles of spectacular narrow gauge steam .
The trip though the Aberglaslyn Pass - voted the most beautiful
place in the UK by members of the National Trust - is nothing short
of magical and the views of Snowdonia from the wide flatlands of
the Traeth Mawr - reclaimed from the sea with the building of William
Madocks' mile-long Cob embankment 200 years ago are simply stunning.
The railway offers a variety of other fantastic trips -the line
allows passengers to gain easy access to some of the most popular
walks up Snowdon, such as the Snowdon Ranger from Rhyd Ddu and paths
up Mynydd Mawr or the Nantlle Ridge.
area is renowned for a selection of excellent real-ale pubs, such
as those found at Waunfawr and Rhyd Ddu, and the Lôn Eifon
cycleway runs alongside the line from Caernarfon to Dinas with special
wagons available to transport bikes.
The railway also has stations at Beddgelert - a magical centre of
Welsh culture - and Pont Croesor, right alongside the RSPB's Glaslyn
Osprey Centre, before running through the streets of Porthmadog
to connect up with the Ffestiniog Railway, the oldest independent
railway company in the World, founded by Act of Parliament in 1832.
Today the thousands of tons of slate have been replaced by thousands
of tourists who now enjoy the outstanding natural beauty of Snowdonia
as they pass through areas untouched by roads and undisturbed by
the sights and sounds of modern life.
Both the Welsh Highland and the Ffestiniog railways cater for all,
with carriages featuring extra-wide doors and special accommodation
for wheelchair users.
More details at www.festrail.co.uk
or from the booking office on 01766 516024.
Your GLTW Discount Card also entitles you to discounts
at the following accommodation providers. Please Note: You
must disclose that you are a GLTW card holder at the time of booking
and show your card on arrival.
Whilst you are in the area, why not visit some of the other nearby
places of interest:-
Caernarfon is possibly the most famous of Wales's many castles.
Its sheer scale and commanding presence easily set it apart from
the rest-and, to this day, still trumpet in no uncertain terms
the intentions of its builder, Edward I. Begun in 1283 as the
definitive chapter in his conquest of Wales, Caernarfon was constructed
not only as a military stronghold but also as a seat of government
and royal place. The castle's majestic persona is no architectural
accident; it was designed to echo the walls of Constantinople,
the imperial power of Rome and the dream-castle, 'the fairest
that ever man saw', of Welsh myth and legend. After all these
years, Caernarfon's immense strength remains undimmed.
- The Fun Centre in Caernarfon is North Wales biggest indoor adventure
play centre! While the kids are wearing themselves out on the
giant drop slides, ball pools, tubes, bridges, maze, climbing
walls, net and ropes..... The adults can relax in the fully licensed
restaurant, enjoy the outside patio area or have a look around
our interactive museum.
can be hired in Caernarfon. There are a number of good safe cycle
ways and bicycles can be taken on the train if you fancy a one
way trip. Dinas Dinlle beach is a few miles from Dinas station
and has vast areas of sand from mid-tide level. The foreshore
consists of natural pebble banks. The beach offers exceptional
views towards the Llyn Peninsula (Penrhyn Llyn) and towards Ynys
Llanddwyn (Llanddwyn Island) on Anglesey.
- Rhyd Ddu is well known as a popular starting point for walks
up Snowdon (via the Rhyd Ddu Path), Moel Hebog, Yr Aran and the
Glaslyn Osprey Centre is situated next to Pont Croesor Station
and is operated by the RSPB and is open from March until the end