Those who indulge in a day out on the Welsh Highland Railway heritage line, running 25 miles from Caernarfon to Porthmadog, are treating themselves to a fine spectacle on the UK's longest heritage line. If you're looking for a longer trip (the journey time is two hours) with scenic views (you'll think you're looking at a series of postcards!) in comfortable carriages, then this is the steam train ride for you! If it's a special occasion you're celebrating, why not crank the sophistication up a notch and upgrade to first class...freshly cooked food delivered to your seat sounds good, eh?
With steep gradients of up to 1 in 40 (the route passes the foot of Snowdon, so get your cameras ready and prepare to gawp!) and speeds of up to 25 miles an hour required as the track is so long, the Welsh Highland Railway acquired four Beyer-Garrat NGG16 (2-6-2 + 2-6-2) engines they are numbered 138, 143, 140 and 87. They are narrow-gauge, yes, but impressive none-the-less, weighing in at 62 tonnes.
Park at Caernarfon Station, Dinas Station or Rhyd Ddu Station. If you want to partake of a station-side snack (they do take outs for the journey, if you're interested) then Harbour Station's Spooner's Cafe and Bar in Porthmadog gets good reviews. The trains themselves are fitted with kitchens and cater for light snacks, soups and drinks.
Search these listings for camping in Caernarfon or along the route of the West Highland Railway: ideal sites from which to indulge in this ultimate steam tour in Wales. Use the 'things to do' tab on each site's listing to find out information and reviews on other local attractions, pubs, shops and restaurants: a great holiday planning tool. If you're into two-wheeled excitement, then the 'cycle route' tab is also a handy tool, showing where the local, regional and national cycle routes lie in relation to each campsite.