UK Rail Journeys

Portmeirion and Railways of Snowdonia

Date: 30 May to 3 (or 6) June, 2024
Location: Wales, UK

Come explore Welsh Narrow Gauge in style with longtime fans and supporters, Stephen Martin and Paul Spracklen (some days only). This is our eight repeat of this highly successful tour we have run in consecutive years  and an opportunity to enjoy access behind the scenes at preserved railway lines, museums and National Trust properties. You’re able book for either a four night stay at Portmeirion or a full 7 nights.

Travel on charter trains and stay at the exclusive Portmeirion hotel and Village on the Welsh coast. The programme includes gourmet meals, wine tasting and after dinner speakers. Portmeirion is a popular tourist village in Gwynedd, North Wales. It was designed and built by Sir Clough Williams-Ellis between 1925 and 1975 in the style of an Italian village and is now owned by a charitable trust.

Portmeirion has served as the location for numerous films and television shows, most famously serving as The Village in the 1960s television show The Prisoner.

We have come to a special arrangement with Portmeirion so as to be our able to offer four different levels of accommodation. Top of the range is accommodation in hotel suites in the village which are exceptionally well appointed. Mid-range is standard hotel rooms all located in the village grounds. Thirdly for those with any mobility issues we have reserved a small number of rooms in the main hotel building but these are not as spacious as those in the village. The final alternative is to share accommodation in one of the well-appointed village cottages but with the guarantee of your own bathroom, living and dining rooms would be shared between the party staying in the cottage. This makes this option particularly good if you join us in a group but note is only available for the seven night option.

Irrespective of your choice of accommodation at Portmeirion all of the inclusive meals will be taken together in the hotel restaurant or private dining rooms. Portmeirion is renowned for the quality of its cuisine with wonderful views over the bay from the dining room. There are several occasions for pre-dinner drinks and for most meals wine or soft drinks are included.

As well as the hotel and gardens there are extensive woodlands and beaches which in the evening are deserted and ripe for exploration and June is the ideal time to see the gardens and parkland at their best.

Tour Highlights

  • Great food
  • National Trust behind the scenes
  • Private charter on Ffestiniog and Welsh Highland Railways
  • Private charter on Talyllyn Railway
  • Steam hauled heritage train on Snowdon Mountain Railway
  • Superb scenery
  • Unique Portmeirion Village (option)

Tour Itinerary

The morning is free to explore the gardens and parkland of Portmeirion Village. Travel by Cambrian railway or coach to Tywyn to join an afternoon charter train on the Talyllyn Railway – the world’s first preserved line – utilising the original Victorian stock and steam engines dating from 1869 on a return trip to Nant Gwernol with photographic run passes. During your journey, tour the Pendre workshops and on your return to Tywyn, have a drink at the famous Narrow Gauge Railway Museum and enjoy a railroad dinner with the general manager as an after-dinner talk about Talyllyn. Return to Portmeirion. Those not staying at Portmeirion your holiday price includes entrance to Portmeirion today with transfer to/from Porthmadog.

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The wonderful Talyllyn Railway – the World’s first preserved railway

In the morning, ride on a heritage steam train to Snowdon. A unique rack railway that opened in 1896. After spending some time at the summit, return to Llanberis, then visit the National Slate Museum. There are lunch facilities at the Museum. After lunch, visit the nearby Llanberis Lake Railway and return along the line for a scheduled tour of the loco department and workshop. In the evening, enjoy a private gourmet dinner at Castell Deudraeth on the Portmeirion estate with wine tasting.

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Ex-slate quarry locomotives outside the National Slate Museum in Llanberis
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Steam hauled vintage train on Snowdon

An early morning departure to join the special charter* train travelling on both the Welsh Highland and Ffestiniog Railways – 80 miles of scenic narrow-gauge wonder. Our trains are hauled by two Ffestiniog steam locomotives(subject to availability). Guests staying at Portmeirion will enjoy exclusive seating in the luxury observation coach complete with champagne and croissants. After leaving Porthmadog, your first stop is the Boston Lodge (optional). After seeing an amazing collection of vintage steam locomotives and carriages, return to Porthmadog and to the Welsh Highland Railway before arriving in Caernarfon, passing through Beddgelert and spectacular scenery of Snowdonia . After a short break, return to Beddgelert for a break before heading back to Porthmadog to join the world-famous Ffestiniog Railway. We change locomotives in Porthmadog to, hopefully, two original 'England' locomotives from the 1860s - Welsh Pony and Palmerston. Drive the track to Blaenau Ffestiniog, admiring spectacular views. Back in Porthmadog, enjoy a private dinner at Spooner’s restaurant with after-dinner speakers to talk about both railways. Return to Portmeirion.

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Stunning scenery on the Welsh Highland Railway. Britain’s longest heritage line
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One of the unique Double Fairlie locomotives on the Ffestiniog Railway

A day to see the work of the National Trust in Snowdonia. After a leisurely breakfast, take your coach to Llandudno and board the historic tramway up the Great Orme. Here, meet the National Trust rangers of to discuss the plans for the Great Orme, which the Trust recently acquired.

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The Great Orme Tramway in Llandudno

We then proceed to Penrhyn Castle near Bangor for a private tour of the extensive rail museum and the option to either remain in the museum at leisure or join a conducted tour of the house. After time for lunch in the restaurant at the castle you will then have the choice of being transferred to travel on the Conway Valley Railway to Blaenau Ffestiniog or visit the National Trust’s spectacular and world renowned Bodnant Gardens for a conducted tour by the head gardener which will include access to a new part of the gardens not open to the public. The party will rendezvous back at Blaenau Ffestiniog for onward transfer to Portmeirion/Porthmadog.

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Bodnant Garden

An opportunity to enjoy Portmeirion village before departing late in the morning for the Llangollen standard gauge steam railway, traversing the entire route including the newly opened section to Corwen. After some free time in Llangollen we will take a horse drawn trip along a quiet section of the Llangollen canal. We dine in a unique Victorian hotel on our way back to Portmeirion.

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Llangollen Steam Railway runs through the stunning Dee Valley


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Horse Drawn Barge on the Llangollen Canal

Travel by coach along the coastal road to Aberystwyth and have time to explore the town before a return journey steam hauled on the Vale of Rheidol Railway. Tour the brand new locomotive facility and museum before heading back to Portmeirion.

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Vale of Rheidol Railway

Morning departure from the hotels (included transfers to Minffordd from Portmeirion) on the train to Shrewsbury and on to Birmingham New Street and London Euston or depart at leisure in your own transport.

Prices & Options

Holiday Prices (per person) – Joining in Portmeirion/Porthmadog

  • 5-day break staying at Portmeirion in village room: £1,550
  • 5-day break staying at Portmeirion in the main hotel: SOLD OUT
  • 5-day break staying at Portmeirion in a village suite: £1,725
  • 5-day break staying at Tudor Lodge: £725*
  • 5-day break staying at Tudor Lodge single: £775*
  • 5-day break tour only, own accommodation: £425

*rooms at Tudor Lodge are very few so book early for this option. 


  • 3 night NT add-on staying at Portmeirion in village room: £1,200
  • 3 night NT add-on staying at Portmeirion in hotel room: SOLD OUT
  • 3 night NT add-on staying at Portmeirion in village suite: £1,275
  • 3 night NT add-on staying at Tudor Lodge: £425*
  • 3 night NT add-on staying at Tudor Lodge double for single use: £640*
  • 3 night NT add-on tour only, own accommodation: £280

NT members can deduct £30 from the above prices if you bring your membership card with you.


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