The Talking Train
Created in 2004, the Talking Train allows passengers to learn about the history of the railway and the surrounding area, while travelling in a vintage train. During the journey, passengers use audio tour handsets, to reveal the fascinating stories behind the view from the carriage window. The journey starts at Harbour Station, Porthmadog, where passengers check-in and are introduced to the audio handset and the train crew. The train then travels at a leisurely pace, allowing plenty of time to take in the views and stories.
Numbered blue oval plaques along the line and coded whistles from the engine, give cues when to listen in. The train stops along the way so passengers can alight, to get a better view and hear more intriguing tales. Deep in the wooded sections of the line the train slows as it passes the grand open vistas created by recent clearance work. The Talking Train terminates at Tan y Bwlch, the station in the forest, where passengers alight and spend a happy hour enjoying a strolling audio tour, watching the passing trains and having lunch or a snack. For those particularly interested in trains there is also the opportunity to visit the loco footplate and talk to the crew.
Two dedicated vintage carriage sets are used for the Talking Train:
- The 1870's Train, a set of Victorian era carriages
- The 1930's Train, a set of carriages from the early part of the last century, whilst the railway was under the control of Colonel Stephens