Railway Holidays, Isle of Man

Photo - Manx steam railway engine No. 12 reversing to re-couple the carriages at Port Erin station
Manx steam railway engine No. 12 reversing to re-couple the carriages at Port Erin station
If you're planning on visiting the Isle of Man to enjoy its various heritage railways, Athol House is ideally located.

Just off the promenade and only 2 minutes from a tram and bus stop, we're roughly halfway between the steam railway at one end of Douglas and the electric railway at the other.

Heritage Railways on the Isle of Man

With horse drawn trams along Douglas promenade, a steam railway, electric railway, Snaefell moutain railway and several miniature railways, the Isle of Man is a transport enthusiasts dream come true and a tribute to Victorian engineering.

Railways on the Isle of Man include:

  • Isle of Man Steam Railway - Dating back to 1873, this narrow gauge steam railway still uses its original locomotives and rolling stock. The track runs through scenic countryside on a 15¾ mile route between Douglas and Port Erin, with a number of lovingly restored stations along the way.
  • Manx Electric Railway - Built between 1893 and 1899, the Victorian tramcars on the electric railway run along a 17½ mile track from Douglas to Ramsey via Laxey, hugging the island's east coast for much of the journey.
  • Snaefell Mountain Railway - Running from Laxey station, the mountain railway was built in 1895 and slowly climbs from Laxey to above 2,000ft near the summit of Snaefell, the island's only mountain.
  • Horse Trams - Founded in 1876, the Douglas Bay Tramway is one of the world's oldest surviving horse tram services, which still uses it original carriages. The ideal way to travel between the steam and electric railway stations at either end of Douglas.
  • Great Laxey Mine Railway - A unique 19" gauge replica mine tramway with steam locomotives based on originals from 1877.
  • Groudle Glen Railway - The glen railway is a Victorian tourist attraction lovingly restored by volunteers. Steam trains run from the tree lined glen out onto the clifftops overlooking the Irish Sea.
  • The Orchid Line - A miniature railway run by volunteers that runs through a wildlife park, it has three running gauges with a variety of petrol and steam locomotives.

Photo - Manx electric railway carriage No. 9 awaiting passengers at the Laxey halt
Manx electric railway carriage No. 9 awaiting passengers at the Laxey halt
Plus there are a host of railway activities available throughout much of the year:

  • Events - There are a range of railway events each year, including themed days, history tours and family fun.
  • Private Hire - You can hire a steam train to celebrate a wedding, birthday or for corporate events.
  • Driving Experiences - You can even have a go at train driving yourself with beginner, intermediate and advanced courses available.
  • Railway Museum - The railway museum at Port Erin features a collection of locos, rolling stock and railway memorabilia. Historic railway stock and items can also be found in other transport museums on the island.

For more detailed information about the Isle of Man's railways, visit the Isle of Man Steam Railway Supporters Association and Manx Electric Railway Society websites.

Booking Enquiries

For booking enquiries, please telephone or complete our on-line booking form:

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Conveniently Located

Overlooking the gardens of the Villa Marina Complex near the centre of Douglas, Athol House bed and breakfast is ideally situated for the promenade, town centre, theatres, restaurants, bars, museums and other attractions.

The island's excellent bus, electric railway and steam train links also make the capital an ideal base for exploring the rest of the Isle of Man, including Castletown, Port Erin, Ramsey, Peel, Laxey, Onchan and more.

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