Hop on board this Easter

29 February 2024

Hop on board this Easter and take the family on a greener day out by train. We've got some great suggestions from our friends at community rail, with their local insights we've pulled together some delightful hidden gems to make your adventure a truly memorable day out. Best of all, they are all within reach of a railway station so it's easier for those without access to a car or if you're wanting a greener day out.

View of Beatrix Potter display at Birnam Arts
Birnam Arts

Uncover the inspiration for Peter Rabbit and his friends in Scotland

You may already know the links between Beatrix Potter and the Lake District, however many of her childhood summers were spent in Scotland. Discover the story of where Beatrix Potter sought inspiration for her much loved characters at a special exhibition at Birnam Arts.

How to get there: 5 minute walk from Dunkeld & Birnam Railway Station along the Highland Main Line.

Go wild in Filey

Visit the award-winning family run Filey Bird Garden and Animal Park for a delightful day out. Explore the 5 acre park surrounded by stunning Yorkshire countryside and pay a visit to the many animals and exotic birds that call the park their home. Watch out for the mischievous meercats, say hello to the 65 year old tortoise, and it wouldn't be Easter without a visit to see the adorable rabbits. There's plenty more to explore too, take a look here.

How to get there: 20 minute walk from Filey Railway Station along the Yorkshire Coast Line.

Locomotion on display at Locomotion Shildon
Locomotion Shildon

Do the Locomotion in Shildon

Get up close and personal with a national collection of railway vehicles located in Shildon, the world's first railway town. Families will enjoy looking inside the carriages and train units from throughout history. Discover the rich seam of local railway history and discover how the railways have changed all our lives before having a bite to eat at the café and browsing for souvenirs in the gift shop. Find out more...

How to get there: 10 minute walk from Shildon Railway Station along the Bishop Line

Young highland cow standing in a field looking at the camera

Cuddle a cow in East Yorkshire

Grab your wellies and head to Dumble Farm, a small working family farm offering unique bookable experiences to get closer to nature. Cow cuddling offers you the chance to get up close and personal with a variety of animals on the farm including retired dairy cows, goats and alpacas. Or why not choose the highland cow meet and greet session where you can groom and cuddle some of the younger highland cows. These experiences are aimed at over 16's so will be perfect for families with older children. Find out more...

How to get there: 10 minute walk from Arram Railway Station along the Yorkshire Coast Line. Please note the walking route follows a small but quiet country lane that goes through the village's residential areas and out into the countryside. For most of the way there is no pedestrian path so you will need to walk on the grass at the side of the road so please do take care.

Have an unlimited adventure with The Auckland Project

Tap into history, culture and nature as you explore Auckland Castle and Gardens, the Spanish Gallery, the Mining Art Gallery and the Faith Museum all situated in Bishop Auckland. There's plenty to do for all the family here without having to travel far and the lovely folks at The Auckland Project offer an Unlimited Pass to make sure you don't miss a thing on your visit.

How to get there: A short walk 5-10 minute walk from Bishop Auckland Railway Station, along the Bishop Line, and you'll be in the heart of the town centre. Walk another 5 minutes and you'll reach The Auckland Project consisting of a number of attractions and places to visit within close proximity to each other.

Stunning castle with boats in a body of water in the foreground
Conwy Castle

Go with the flow in Pitlochry

Discover the fascinating story of Pitlochry Dam, learn about the Tummel Hydro electric scheme and find out how the famous fish ladder has guided salmon upriver and homeward since 1952, at the Pitlochry Dam Visitor Centre. Walk over the top of the dam, along the river and pop for a bite to eat at Port na Craig Inn. Cross back over the river via the 'Shoogly' bridge, an Edwardian pedestrian bridge, to the children's playpark and after a short 5-10 minute walk you'll return to Pitlochry main Street.
How to get there: 10 minute walk from Pitlochry Railway Station along the Highland Main Line.

Discover epic castles in Wales

Did you know Wales have more castles per square-mile than any other country in Europe? Plus, many are easy to reach by train, making your day out more sustainable and greener. Best of all, Transport for Wales and Cadw (Welsh Government's historic environment service) have teamed up to offer 2-for-1 entry to historic sites if you show your train ticket. See their list of suggested sites to visit here but be quick the offer ends 31 May 2024.

Explore the arts from countryside to capital to coast

From grand city galleries and quirky art trails to beautiful sculpture parks and charming art museums there's plenty for all the family to enjoy along the Thameslink Art Trail. Uncover hidden artistic gems amongst well-known art galleries as you explore the trail leading from Bedford, St Albans and Cambridge across London and south to Brighton, Horsham and Sevenoaks. Find out more...

How to get there: Thameslink services connect the countryside, capital and coast in the south of England. All of the places to visit on the Art Trail are easy to access from railway stations along the route. See the full details here.

We'd love to hear about your family adventures! Share your stories and photos with us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or TikTok.

Please note: Most train companies run a reduced service during bank holidays. Please check before travel and consider travelling outside of these times to reduce disruption to your journey. Be sure to book in advance to get the best price train tickets.

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