HOLIDAY REVIEW: ISLE OF MAN MAGIC
As always, it’s an early start on the first day as we have to get up to Heysham by lunchtime for the four hour ferry crossing to Douglas. Luckily when you arrive it’s only five minutes along the promenade to the hotel, and ready for a lovely carvery dinner at our home for the week, the Chesterhouse Hotel.
Our second day began with a few black clouds overhead, as we travelled to Laxey to join the Snaefell Mountain Railway for our journey to the summit. Unfortunately, the mist rolled in and we could barely see a couple of metres from the carriage, but there was much laughter as we listened to the commentary onboard telling us about all the interesting things we should be seeing out of the windows! A short stop at the summit for coffee and cake before our return journey – again nothing but mist and fog!
From Laxey, we continued to Ramsey for a lunch stop and wander around the little town and harbour, before heading back via the TT course to Douglas. Although the weather was a little better in the afternoon, there was still plenty of fog about as we crossed the Snaefell railway line, so we didn’t even see the views from the coach.
Day three was a free day in Douglas for everyone to spend as they wished – from wandering along the harbour area to doing a little shopping. We were very lucky that the horse-drawn tramway had recently reopened after significant refurbishment of the seafront, so we also had a little ride along the promenade courtesy of the gorgeous heavy horse. It was lovely to see this beautiful breed in action.
On day four, we began the day with a stunning scenic railway journey from Douglas to Port Erin, on the narrow gauge railway. From Port Erin, we took a quick drive down to Cregneash, which is a living museum where traditional houses are opened to the public to see the traditional way of life on the Isle of Man. We met a couple of Manx cats, learned about spinning from one of their volunteers, saw how local people lived and saw the local Loughan Sheep in the fields.
We continued down to Calf Sound for a lunch stop – a beautiful viewing point overlooking the Calf of Man, where seals are usually basking on the rocks. We were lucky that today the weather was perfect – and on leaving Calf Sound we headed to Peel via the coastal route, up over the headland and through some stunningly scenic areas with views out across the Irish Sea and beyond. After a little free time in Peel and a stroll along the seafront, we returned to Douglas via a slightly scenic route as the TT course was closed for racing in the afternoon!
A superb holiday was enjoyed by all – we can’t wait to do it all again in 2024!