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“Hug a Hunslet” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Bala Lake Railway

Bala Lake Railway
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Fee: Yes
Owner description: Rheilffordd Llyn Tegid (Bala Lake Railway) offers a delightful 9 mile return journey alongside Bala Lake, through the beautiful Snowdonia National Park. Our 2ft narrow gauge steam trains give excellent views of the lake amid its surrounding pastoral and woodland scenery, and of the nearby mountains, Arenig Fawr, Aran Benllyn and Aran Fawddwy.The railway provides an ideal centrepiece for a day’s visit to Bala Lake. The round trip of 1 hour can be broken at any of the stations to enjoy other activities - a pleasant 10 minutes walk into Bala town for shopping or merely browsing. There is access to the lake shore at Llangower station for swimming, fishing or simply lazing by the waterside.
Level Contributor
155 reviews
100 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 78 helpful votes
“Hug a Hunslet”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 September 2013

Rail enthusiasts will love this narrow gauge line, once part of the GWR's standard gauge Ruabon-Bala-Barmouth run. Unlike other (in my experience) Welsh narrow gauge railways, at the Bala Lake staff actively encourage visitors to go behind the scenes. This includes checking out the operational signal box and engine shed at Llanuwchllyn, the line's western terminus. Staff were happy to give up their time for an impromptu guided tour. The run itself, about an hour return, is enjoyable, with good views of Llyn Tegid (Bala Lake). One or two Trip Advisor reviewers have complained about foliage obscuring the water but save for one or two stretches we didn't find it a problem. A volunteer told me that a programme of tree lopping is planned. Free parking, a tea room and souvenir shop can be found at Llanuwchllyn, where much of the GWR infrastructure remains intact. Locomotives used on the Bala Lake Railway are former Welsh quarry workhorses built by the world famous Hunslet Engine Company (Leeds).

Visited September 2013
Thank Andrew G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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192 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Brighton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
12 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Back for the first time in 40 years!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 September 2013

Love Welsh narrow gauge and Quarry Hunslet locomotives. Prices are very fair and the website makes it clear when the trains run and when they don't.

Very enjoyable journey with views of the lake and plenty of chances to take pictures at either end. very friendly staff and very nice tea and teacake in the tea room.

Well worth a visit and the lake is so photogenic even in changeable weather

Visited September 2013
Thank Keith D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
North Yorkshire
Level Contributor
239 reviews
59 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 212 helpful votes
“It's ok for an hour”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 August 2013

The main station's in LLanuwchllyn, a tiny village at the southern tip of Bala Lake (it's actually Lake Tegid) and it looks like a swish new station is under way.

The train ride is as you'd expect; it goes along the lakeside into Bala then back again. Check the times before you turn up as they're not as often as you might expect: they don't start 'til late morning and the last train back from Bala is something like half past four.

There's not much in Bala to look round other than the sandy beach area at the north end where there's swimming and canoes and sailboats to hire, or sit around and have a coffee. There's also a leisure centre just about at the same place but after that there's not much else - just the main street with a few small basic shops and a couple of pubs. We stayed as a base for hiking so Bala was ok for us.

Visited August 2013
1 Thank RegularTraveller60
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
11 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“To see The Hunslets”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 August 2013

Friendly food basic food put good and good train ride a good 1/2 day will go again and you like small steam engines and nice ride to Bala and back good value for your money and helpful staff .

Visited June 2013
1 Thank glynne6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pembroke, Wales, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
25 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“Dog friendly!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 August 2013 via mobile

Lovely views, took my dog on the train with no problems or charge as lots of trains do charge a fee for dogs. Reasonable price for two adult returns.

Visited August 2013
4 Thank 762Mish83
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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