There is something about scenic railways that really captures the imagination. They are a far cry from railways that simply take you from A to B – perhaps to get you to work and back. If you are booking up Short Breaks near the Forest of Dean, you will be very close to one of the best scenic steam railways in the whole country.
The Dean Forest Railway is loved by visitors of all ages, and the railway itself is easy enough to find. It is located in Forest Road in Lydney and is well signposted in the local area.
If you need any further convincing to leave your Forest of Dean accommodation and head for the Dean Forest Railway, here are four good reasons for doing just that.
1. You can relive the best days of steam. The railway has smart steam engines that pull you along several miles of track. There is nothing quite like the experience of going on a steam train – the sights and sounds make for a captivating journey. And there is just one ticket price to pay as well. Once you have your ticket you will see that it is valid for the whole day, so you can hop on and off the train as and when you like at the various stations along the line.
2. You can explore the forest by train – and on foot. The stations along the line are Norchard, Parkend, Lydney Town, St Mary’s Halt and Lydney Junction. This opens up a wealth of opportunities to take a walk and explore the area around the stations of your choice. You could even walk from one along to the next and catch the next train from there if you wish. It’s a good idea to get a local map so you can see where the footpaths and best walking routes are.
3. You can meet Thomas the Tank Engine – ideal for kids of all ages! The line runs regular Thomas the Tank Engine days throughout the year. You will have the chance to be pulled by Thomas himself as you travel along the line. It’s a great opportunity to entertain the kids (and no doubt the adults as well).
4. There is just as much to do and enjoy off the train as there is on it. Norchard has a shop and a museum to browse around; the latter has signs, maps and various artefacts from railway years gone by. It is an impressive collection.
Railway enthusiasts of all ages will love the Dean Forest Railway. But even if steam trains aren’t a particular love of yours, you won’t fail to be delighted with your visit. The surroundings, the trains and the various walks on offer take you back to a time when things seemed far more laid back. And what better atmosphere to enjoy when you are on holiday in the Forest of Dean?
It’s time to catch that train.