Bristol Harbour Railway

We spent a weekend in Bristol last month to celebrate Daddy P’s 50th birthday.  I’d planned a number of ideas for his surprise weekend, but hadn’t spotted the Bristol Harbour Railway on my map.  As we walked along the floating harbour towards SS Great Britain we could see steam, the sort of steam we associate with a steam train. There were squeals of delight from Monkey when we spotted the Bristol Harbour Railway loco steaming up for the day.

Bristol Harbour Railway

The Bristol Harbour Railway dates back to the early 1870’s although only a small part of the line is still operational now.  Run by M Shed, the railway runs on weekends (although I believe it closes from the end of October until some point in the new year).  The train runs for about 1 mile with return trips to either SS Great Britain or Ashton Bridge, for a few pounds.

Bristol Harbour Railway

We decided to catch the train after we’d been to explore SS Great Britain and followed it back along the track back to M Shed.

Bristol Harbour Railway

The next trip was running back to SS Great Britain but we decided to wait and take the following trip which would see the Loco Portbury take us to Ashton Bridge along the New Cut waterway.

The round trips take about 15 minutes, so we didn’t have too long to wait until we could board.  With Monkey being first in line, there was no question where we’d be sitting.  As close to the loco as possible.

Bristol Harbour Railway

The Floating Harbour area of Bristol city centre is fascinating and a wonderful place to explore and imagine the bygone industrial era. The hustle and bustle of a busy dockside, a far cry from the area now.

We passed the replica of The Matthew, John Cabot’s ship that he sailed and discovered Newfoundland in, and various other tall ships along the way.

Before we headed off along the New Cut, behind the industrial past of Bristol to the end of the line, and then headed back whence we came.

As we returned to the end of the line we looked out across to Harbourside and spotted more steam, this time in the shape of the Steam Tug SS Mayflower, at 150 years of age, the oldest steam tug in the world.  Of course, we knew exactly where we were heading next, but I’ll save that adventure for another day.

Bristol Harbour Railway

We can thoroughly recommend a trip on the Bristol Harbour Railway if you’re in Bristol and it’s running.  It’s a lovely way to take in the area, give your feet a rest and enjoy the the scenery.

Bristol Harbour Railway

Country Kids

About Over 40 and a Mum to One

I'm a Mum in my late 40′s with a 7 year old son. I had a busy life in Export Sales before my Monkey came along, but decided to become a stay at home Mum once he arrived. Now I enjoy writing my own family lifestyle and travel blog. sharing the adventures that we have as Monkey makes his journey through school. We have a cat called Brewster who makes appearances and I’m a mad Ferrari Formula 1 fan, so that expect to hear about as each season unfolds. We love reviewing toys, games and books and would love the opportunity to look at anything that fits in with our family lifestyle. We are always out and about and offering an insight on the places we visit, with a passion for nature thrown in for good measure. If you like what you read please leave me a comment, I love to hear from people, and always try to reply. Enjoy the read.

13 thoughts on “Bristol Harbour Railway

  1. I can just imagine Monkey’s face when you heard and smelt the steam wafting through the air! What a lovely extra surprise on your weekend visit. To be honest I think 15 minutes is just the right amount of time. All the fun is in seeing the loco, queuing and getting on and off. Along the Portbury Waterway sounded like a great destination. Happy 50th to Mr Over 40 and I’m now looking forward to hearing where you visited next.

    Thank you for sharing with me on #CountryKids

  2. We stayed in a hotel overlooking the harbour when we were in Bristol. It’s a great place to explore, and we hardly got round anything. The train looks great – unfortunately it wasn’t running when we were there. #countrykids

  3. Bristol is a stunning city isn’t it; the regeneration within the City has transformed it.
    Having read your blog over time I can just imagine how excited Monkey was with the trip on the loco; and the smells and sounds. What a lovely thing to do and it sounds like you all had an amazing time for Mr O40MTO birthday.
    #CoutryKids

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