Heatherslaw Light Railway
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Closed until Mar 29, 2024

Heatherslaw Light Railway

Heatherslaw Light Railway
4.5
Temporarily closedClosed until Mar 29, 2024
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Duration: 1-2 hours
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  • ndw78
    Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom1,748 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Fab journey for all the family
    Had a little trouble finding it as satnav took us past and missed the sign but once we found it we had a fab time. A great journey with wonderful views. Spent some time in etal and retuned. Station is cute and there’s plenty carriages for all
    Visited March 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written April 30, 2023
  • Peter R
    Gloucester, United Kingdom395 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Delightful little railway
    Delightful little railway operating a 20 minute journey between Heatherslaw and Etal. Options to alight at Etal and then come back on a later train or stay onboard for the return journey. Small gift shop in the ticket office. Very friendly and helpful staff
    Visited June 2023
    Written July 2, 2023
  • Beccy C
    111 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Highly recommend
    Great little railway that takes you from Heatherslaw (Heatherslaw Mill is only a couple of minutes walk from the station) to Etal Castle. Nice journey of about 20 minutes. The train staff are great and very helpful.
    Visited June 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written July 3, 2023
  • A.S
    3 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Wonderful experience
    When planning a trip for some service users Heatherslaw was the ideal place. Its local reasonably priced, accessible and accommodating . We had a wonderful day . The staff at the platform and the train conductor were friendly and helpful. The train journey was perfect with amazing views on the way. My only comment would be in regards to the path up to the village. Having visited Heatherslaw a few years back I was hoping to see a few changes this time round. The pathway from the train up to the castle is still gravel. This makes it inaccessible for wheelchairs, it would be great to see this tarred so that next year for our summer trip we could bring all service users. I highly recommend visiting , its a great day for all ages.
    Visited July 2023
    Traveled on business
    Written July 18, 2023
  • Rachel S
    31 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Gentle train ride
    I decided to have a little trip with the pooch and this looked lovely. It is a small train and track, with a nice gentle journey. All the staff were lovely, kind and chatty. Not much at Etal but I enjoyed the chance to stop before heading back.
    Visited August 2023
    Traveled solo
    Written August 2, 2023
  • Jennifer B
    4 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Lovely, gentle couple of hours
    Wonderful way to spend a few hours. Great carriages, kept us (almost) dry during a downpour! The guard and engine driver were so warm and friendly and great with our daughter. Would recommend Lavender Tea Room at Etal.
    Visited August 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written August 15, 2023
  • Springer21
    14 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Lovely day but word of warning if it’s busy
    Lovely day spent with the family. There was plenty of room on the train to Etal including space for the pushchair. We all enjoyed the trip. Not loads to see from the train but that didn’t matter as it’s just fun being on the train. Etal is very quaint. Interesting castle to see not far from the end of the line. Not lots to see in Etal but nice to spend an hour or so and have lunch. The tearoom was heaving but thankfully we had a picnic. Then we had coffee/refreshments in the pub, which was much quieter/calmer and relaxing. Headed back down to get the return train and the queue was long. At one point we weren’t sure we’d get on the train, even more so when people already on the train, stayed on to head straight back. This cut train capacity quite a bit and you could tell not everyone queuing at Etal would get on. Thankfully we did. However not everyone did!!!A member of staff shouted out that those who don’t have a seat can either wait for the 4pm train (the last train, which was in an hour and a half) or walk back. Thankfully we were on the train and headed back. But I’d have been a bit annoyed if we didn’t get a seat, especially with two very young children. I felt very sorry for those who didn’t manage to get on. There is no way I’d have wanted to spend another hour and a half in Etal as we’d seen everything and if you paid for a return fare why would you then be ok to walk? So at buy times all I can say is get in the queue as soon as possible otherwise you’ll be stranded for a bit or walking back.
    Visited August 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written September 4, 2023
  • David C
    14 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Brilliant little trip
    Decided to try this little railway for our dogs first rail trip before he goes onto the big steam rides. Have to say he lived it and we did too. The whole staff were genuinely pleased to see you and we're all chatty and charming. Never tried it before as we usually drive straight to Etal but well worth it.
    Visited September 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written September 23, 2023
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

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4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles289 reviews
Excellent
170
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Dragonette
Dundee, UK81 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2020 • Couples
My partner and I, a couple of miniature ride-on railway enthusiasts, decided to slip over the border on Sunday to experience this super fun light railway.

The outward journey to Etal was very pleasant with plenty of opportunities to either sit back and relax or take loads of photos of the lovely scenery and / or local wildlife / farm animals.

On the return journey we wondered what had caught the interest of a small herd of bullocks in a nearby field. The track was impassable due to a few tree branches having been blown down by the strong gusty winds but the train driver stopped the train and skillfully cleared the track. Unfortunately, the cattle were slightly spooked when the train's whistle sounded but they soon came back to watch the fun.

In no time the track was cleared and we continued our journey back to Heatherslaw.

A most enjoyable couple of hours can be spent in this area. Etal was lovely and there is plenty of time between trains for a spot of lunch or wee wander around the village before heading back.

Written September 13, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

VanillaCandle166
York, UK80 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2020
So glad I spotted this on the map! We do like playing trains when we are on holiday. Splendid little railway, 20 minute trip each way was good value for the fare, nce to be steam-hauled. Friendly station staff explained the Covid precautions clearly. Well worth a visit as part of the attractions at this site and close by, especially for families.
Written August 19, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

ThePsephologist
Newcastle upon Tyne, UK11 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2020
This was our third trip to Heatherslaw Light Railway but our first one since the Covid pandemic. I was anxious as it was the first place we visited since March 2020 but I didn't need to be. It was busy - but there are good one way systems in place, they are cleaning the carriage ages in-between trips and limiting the number of people in the shop / ticket office.

It was very. busy with some people not getting a spot on the train, so I'd get there half an hour before the train is due to leave and get your tickets and a spot in the queue.
Written August 19, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Paul R
Wellingborough, UK773 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2021
This narrow-gauge railway makes for a fun and relaxing day's outing, especially when combined with the various attractions on offer at the villages at either end of the line.
The trip itself is of just the right length to enjoy the countryside and the novelty of chugging along behind the little blue engine, breathing in the evocative, sulphurous steam.
Pretty villages lie at either end of the line, where there are opportunities for such activities as visiting a ruined castle, a heavy horses centre, a corn mill, craft shops or just eating or drinking at the several pubs, tea shops and cafes.
Taking an early outbound train and allowing yourself plenty of time to potter around before picking up one of the frequent return trains is recommended.
An enjoyable, undemanding treat.
Written September 28, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Vince H
Wisbech, UK467 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2021
We arrived at Heatherslaw Railway Station expecting to have to wait for a train ride. However, we were pleasantly surprised to find no queues and we were able to purchase tickets for the next available departure which meant only a ten minute wait. The train is narrow gauge with somewhat cramped carriages. However, this did not detract from our enjoyment of the four-mile journey to Etal Station. After disembarking at Etal, we paid a visit to the castle before taking a gentle stroll into the village of Etal itself. We were really impressed with the quaintness and "old Englishness" of this picture postcard village. The shop/post office/lavender tea rooms were very popular with the tourists and we enjoyed a delicious cream tea in the tea room garden. The staff were friendly which added to the enjoyment of our visit. We then sauntered back to the railway station in time for our return trip aboard the steam railway. Once back at Heatherslaw, we crossed the river to visit the working cornmill powered by the river and again, the staff were very friendly and helpful. Overall, an extremely enjoyable afternoon.
Written September 19, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Malcybabe
Boston, UK408 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2021
The rail enthusiasts who keep this little railway running are to be admired, as the track runs from nowhere to nowhere and back. Not much to see except a few sheep, cattle and the river. One for the die hards I feel.
Written June 26, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Millie024
Llantwit Major, UK532 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2022 • Couples
An excellent visit. We arrived with over an hour to wait for the first train. Directed across the bridge over the attractive river Till, we found the old corn mill, a visitors’ centre with an informative video, two shops, toilets and a cafe. We sat outside and enjoyed an excellent coffee and flap jack. Returning to the railway, we inspected their model railway, then boarded the train. This railway was the hobby and brainchild of its founder, and we just loved it. The round trip to and from Etal took about fifty minute. All the staff we met were very friendly and pleasant, and we thoroughly enjoyed our visit. The video we saw was about the estate Ford/Etal, and gave a good picture of the diversity of their countryside activities, both historically and today. There were plenty of visitors and the spacious car park was about full when we left, so we would recommend arriving in good time and going, as we did, for a coffee , or an ice cream!
Written July 18, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

DrPyser
Burnley, UK46 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2020
We have visited Northumberland many times over the years and having a train mad couple of sons, it was strange we hadn't previously visited Heatherslaw light railway.

We arrived just too late to catch the 10.30 service, which was full, but bought tickets for the next one, with a plan to be back at the ticket office to have the choice of seats. Nipped over the bridge to the tea tooms and had a leisurely brew, before heading back to the station.

The train arrived and was quickly wiped down before we were allowed to board. We got behind the engine and sat back to enjoy the roughly 25 minute journey up to Etal, which winds along the river at a pace not much faster than a quick walk.

On arrival, we stayed in the carriage for the return journey (we were heading back to Etal by car slightly later). The engine swaps ends so we were now at the rear and once again, just sat back and watched the world go by.

All in all, its a great little trip. The staff were all friendly and on a fine sunny day we really enjoyed it. If you are in the area, definitely drop in
Written August 16, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Springer21
14 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2023 • Family
Lovely day spent with the family. There was plenty of room on the train to Etal including space for the pushchair. We all enjoyed the trip. Not loads to see from the train but that didn’t matter as it’s just fun being on the train.
Etal is very quaint. Interesting castle to see not far from the end of the line. Not lots to see in Etal but nice to spend an hour or so and have lunch. The tearoom was heaving but thankfully we had a picnic. Then we had coffee/refreshments in the pub, which was much quieter/calmer and relaxing.
Headed back down to get the return train and the queue was long. At one point we weren’t sure we’d get on the train, even more so when people already on the train, stayed on to head straight back. This cut train capacity quite a bit and you could tell not everyone queuing at Etal would get on. Thankfully we did. However not everyone did!!!A member of staff shouted out that those who don’t have a seat can either wait for the 4pm train (the last train, which was in an hour and a half) or walk back. Thankfully we were on the train and headed back. But I’d have been a bit annoyed if we didn’t get a seat, especially with two very young children. I felt very sorry for those who didn’t manage to get on.
There is no way I’d have wanted to spend another hour and a half in Etal as we’d seen everything and if you paid for a return fare why would you then be ok to walk? So at buy times all I can say is get in the queue as soon as possible otherwise you’ll be stranded for a bit or walking back.
Written September 4, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Charlie H
northumberland115 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2020
A quaint relaxing experience, like going back in time. Train was more punctual and service more friendly than the modern railway experience. Good value, a shame the pub at the other end wasn't doing food on the day. Strongly recommend.
Written September 7, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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