Here in Scotland, we are celebrating the year of Architecture, Innovation and Design and what better way to celebrate it than steam rail travel? James Watt, a Scottish inventor, mechanical engineer and chemist improved the Newcomen steam engine and radicalised the way we began to travel. The first steam train travel journey took place in 1804. Richard Trevithick constructed the first steam railway locomotive in 1803 and today there are a few of the classics still available to enjoy “the golden age of travel” dating to the 1920’s, such as the Belmond British Pullman. Here are some of the best steam train travels for the railway enthusiast.
Best Steam Train Travels For The Rail Enthusiast
Strathspey Steam Railway
Enjoy a memorable trip through the heart of the Scottish Highlands with the Strathspey Steam Railway. Journey from Aviemore through to Boat Garten and last stop, Broomhill before returning to your original boarding station. You just never know what you might discover when you visit!
Bo’ness and Kinneil Railway
Enjoy Scotland’s largest rail museum – Bo’ness and Kinneil Railway located in the small town of Bo’ness on the east coast of Scotland. With a number of great events throughout the year for both the railway enthusiast such as the steam train gala or family days out to see Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends or perhaps travel back to a bygone era with a traditional afternoon tea on-board the rustic steam train.
The “Hogwarts Express” as known by all the Harry Potter fans, departs from Fort William to Mallaig over the impressive Glenfinnan Viaduct. If you would like to experience this magical journey, get in there quick to book as it’s very popular!
Unique Train Journeys
There are some spectacular trains that explore more of Scotland such as the characterful Royal Scotsman. At over £1,000 per night, it really is in a luxurious class of its own. With only 36 passengers, it offers an intimate, 5-star experience travelling through some of the most beautiful Scottish landscapes.
Venice Simplon-Orient Express
Or perhaps you would like to travel further a field on-board the luxurious Orient Express. If like me, you are a big fan of Poirot, you will love it! The train still holds that air of mystery and nostalgia with decorative wooden inlay panels, traditional fittings and decadence. Travel in style on-board this timeless work of art through Europe.
I hope I have inspired you to travel on-board some of these timeless classics and explore Scotland or perhaps further a field. There is a number of accommodation options available before/after traveling on-board one of these incredible journeys, not to mention the delicious cuisine available both on and off board.
As always we would love to hear from you. Have you traveled on-board one of these beautiful journeys? Or have something to add to tour list of the best steam train travels? Please leave any comments/questions below. Happy Travels:) x