The Talyllyn Railway starts from Tywyn on the Mid-Wales coast, halfway between Barmouth and Aberystwyth on the A493 road. Opened in 1865, the line - which is narrow gauge powered by coal fired steam locomotives - was built to carry slate from quarries in the hills. The quarries closed in 1946 but the daily passenger train carried on, and now the terminus is at Nant Gwernol, a station over seven miles from Tywyn with no road access. Abergynolwyn station, on the B4405, is half a mile from the end of the line and has road access with a car park. In 1952 the railway was taken over by the Talyllyn Railway Preservation Society, the first such in the world, and it is the volunteer members of the Society together with a small dedicated full time workforce who run the Railway today. The original two steam locomotives and four passenger coaches are still in regular use, together with others which have been built or acquired over the years.
A daily steam train service operates from Easter to the end of October and at Christmas, with special events - ranging from a Steam and Vintage Vehicle Rally to special Children's days - happening during the season. The original Victorian train which opened the line runs on selected Thursdays, and this trip includes a tour of the Railway sheds and Workshops. Evening trains run on Summer Tuesdays featuring a variety of entertainment.
In 2005 the new 60 seat station café - the "Porters Platter" - was opened at Tywyn Wharf station together with an enlarged gift shop. The Narrow Gauge Railway Museum also opened at the same time. This features two floors of large and small exhibits illustrating the development of narrow gauge railways to suit various industries. The Revd W Awdry, one of the first volunteer Guards on the Talyllyn, has a special section dealing with his series of Railway books for children. Entry is free to Groups. All the main facilities are gathered under one roof and full provision is made for disabled passengers. Wharf Station has a large car park and free parking for coaches.
Abergynolwyn station features a café, small shop and toilets and disabled facilities. The Railway Adventure playground is a magnet for children of all ages. At Dolgoch you can walk around majestic waterfalls and there are country walks to suit everybody from the intermediate stations and halts.
The Railway is also popular with Coach Operators and Groups with a full range of single and return trips on offer. All bookings made before the day of travel have seating reserved.
Bus timetables subject to change. Check all bus details HERE.
Your GLTW Discount Card also entitles you to discounts at the following accommodation providers.Please Note: You must disclose that you are a GLTW card holder at the time of booking and show your card on arrival.
High Street Tywyn
01654 712753 mertonvilla.co.uk
10% off two nights or more
Preswylfa Guest House
01654 710005 preswylfa.net
10% off two nights or more
Whilst you are in the area, why not visit some of the other nearby places of interest:-
The Mighty Wurlitzer Cinema Organ on display ast Neuadd Pendre, Tywyn was built in Tonawanda, New York State in the United States of America, the 3-manual 9-rank Wurlitzer Organ was originally installed in the Granada Cinema, Woolwich in South East London in 1937 where it was officially opened by no less a personality than Reginald Dixon, best known to everyone as 'Mr Blackpool'. It is now fully restored and is in regular use at concerts throughout the year.
Castell y Bere is a native Welsh castle near Llanfihangel-y-pennant north of Abergynolwyn. It is situated atop a steep, flat-topped rock from which it commands views of the surrounding Dysynni Valley and Cadair Idris. It was likely built by Prince Llywelyn ab Iorwerth around 1221. It is now in the care of Cadw. Today the Castell y Bere is mostly ruins, though the castle's layout, dictated by the lozenge shape of the rocky outcrop upon which it sits, is still apparent.
Tywyn is noted for its Norman Church of St Cadfan housing St Cadfan's Stone dating from the eighth or ninth century and inscribed with the oldest known written Welsh. The church was sacked by Vikings in 963 and, during the 12th century was the subject of a memorable poem by Llywelyn Fardd. The earliest parts of the building date to the 12th century, and it originally had a central tower, although this fell down in 1693. The church houses two 14th-century effigies, one of an unknown priest and the other of a military figure thought to be Gruffudd ap Adda (died ca 1350) of Dôl-goch and Ynysymaengwynh.