Snaefell and Laxey

Snaefell and Laxey on the Isle of Man tour

Tuesday, 17th September 2019

The day starts with a leisurely buffet breakfast at the hotel. At 10:00 we gather in the hotel lounge for the brief walk down to the promenade. John, our coach driver, meets us and takes us the short distance along the promenade to the Douglas Electric Tram station. The 10:40 tram takes us to Laxey.

At Laxey we change trams . . 

. . . to travel on the branch line up to the top of Snaefell. 

Snaefell is the highest spot on the Isle of Man. And on a clear day you can see England, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Today is bright and sunny, but at the top it is cold and very windy.

Just below the summit is another of the roads that the TT races travel along.

After an hour at the top of Snaefell (most of it spent queuing to buy a coffee in the café) we catch a tram back down to Laxey. The route down is not electric powered. It is powered by gravity and as a consequence of this it is a very loud, squeaky journey as the brakes grip the central rail.

At Laxey we visit Isobel Wheel. 

Historically the wheel, which is water powered, was used to pump water from the Laxey mine. The mine, now disused, but visitable, was a lead mine. A steep spiral staircase is used to access the platform at the top.

Walking back into the village of Laxey, we pass by the steam powered Laxey Mine Railway. Trains only run on weekends.

Back at Laxey Tram Station there is time for a quick visit to The Mines pub, which features a bar designed to look like a tram.

From Laxey we travel back along the electric tramway to Douglas.

At Douglas Tramway Station we catch a horse drawn tram along the promenade back to our hotel.

Back at the hotel a buffet dinner is eaten at 19:00.

Following dinner, I take a walk into the centre of Douglas for a look around. Illuminated in the bay is a Regency cruise ship. (Apparently it has just featured in a recent three part television programme and is the most luxurious and expensive cruise ship around).

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