I find it so Idyllic in the Autumn and Winter to pop on our coats and boots, and ride on a steam train! The tooting of the train, the rolling green hills lined with orange leaves or winter frosts, and the smell of steam and soot hitting you as you take a sneaky peak out of the window whilst the train chugs down its track – it is both enriching and beautiful, and oh so quintessentially English!
Riding Steam trains has been a traditional adventure in our family since the kids were tiny (thanks to Grandpa Smith) and whilst this often takes place over this way on the NYMR, last weekend we spent our Saturday riding on the Keighley and Worth Valley Railway over in West Yorkshire, and it was quite the adventure for us all.
The keighley and Worth Valley Railway
The Keighley and Worth Valley Railway oozes with charm, British history and many a claim to fame. Opened in 1867 (and briefly closing in the 60’s), it originally served the Wool mills that towered above it. It’s scenery and spirit attracted many to use it for films like “The Railway Children”, and it has long since been the inspiration for writers such as the Bronte sisters.
Whether you are visiting for nature walks, exploring the museums, a Yorkshire treat, or generally just to embrace the love of travelling via a steam train, you will not be disappointed by the views and excitement you see and feel as you meander down the tracks of this beautiful little railway. I believe that whatever the season or weather you choose to visit, you will certainly expect to find something to charm and interest everyone, as each little station holds activities and interests to fill your day!
We started our journey from Keighley as we had to be back there in the late afternoon for a family event! We rode 20 minutes up to Haworth, where we spent a couple of hours wandering its picturesque main street and eating lunch from a rustic yorkshire bakery! I love Haworth because it has a reet good yorkshire feel to it!
Haworth does have a rather steep trek uphill from the train station, but it is very much worth it, as here you will find the Bronte Museum, panoramic views over the hills, little cafes and tea rooms, an array of independent gift shops to peruse and a lovely little park.
We each enjoyed its charm (and baked goods!).
From Haworth we hopped back on the line for about 10 minutes before jumping off at Ingrow West station where we explored the engine shed museum and the museum of rail travel. These were small, but interesting nonetheless, and whilst they have tried to be child friendly, they are not the most interactive for kids!
A small train table and a host of carriages to explore, saw that the kids were entertained and their imaginations ignited whilst we were there, but our visit was sort lived (unfortunately)!
I did however (when I could) enjoyed reading about all of the films that the engines and carriages were used in. It was rather exciting to be sat in a carriage where film stars have been and cameras captured!
Before we knew it we had reached the end of our adventure, and as the steam train appeared out of the tunnel at Ingrow West, we hopped aboard and made our way back down the line to keighley station, where we watched them swapping engines and breathed in that smell of the steam train one last time!
We had a lovely family day out, and Keighley and worth Valley railway is a great Yorkshire adventure for any family this October half term (or any weekend really). It can quite easily fill a day with history, nature and adventure, and whether you visit for the sheer joy of a steam train experience, or as a means to access a world of nature walks and film set exploration, the railway is sure to be a real treat for all – opening up a world of curiosity!
They also have a Halloween Special and Santa experience coming up too which is always popular. So whatever your reason or motivation, there is certainly plenty of magic and adventure awaiting you as you hop aboard these exciting and beautiful steam engines!
I personally would love to take a walk in the Summer around the areas featured in “The Railway Children” (I loved it as a kid), and pass on this classic to my kids, but for now we have loved creating such special and beautiful memories to kick of Autumn on the Keighley and Worth Valley Railway – (amidst the mayhem of family life of course!).
Things to Note…
For unlimited travel and access to the museums, then you will want to consider a Rover Ticket:
Children 5 to 15 inclusive: £9
If you are travelling as ONE adult and ONE kid, then you can qualify for a “Small Family Ticket”, which has the same benefits as a Rover Ticket – This is £22
Finally, when purchasing two ‘Small Family Tickets’ for 2 adults and 2 children, a third child can travel free. A family of 5 can take advantage of 1 free children’s rover ticket to add to their ‘Small Family’ rover ticket purchase.
Make sure you check the website to see which timetable they are using, as it changes depending on the day and season!
*Thank you to KWVR for our complimentary tickets in return for an honest review. All thoughts and images are my own!