South Devon Railway – A Family Day out on the Rails!
Hey hey and welcome. Me and B hope you’re all good as we enter autumn. If you’re a regular reader then you’ll know we didn’t go away this summer just gone. Our beautiful puss-cat was poorly and we couldn’t leave him. Instead we’ve had a couple of weekends away which have been really great. This weekend gone saw us staying at Parkers Farm Holiday Cottages and Caravans, on the edge of Dartmoor in Devon. As part of our trip, Visit Dartmoor arranged for us to take a ride on the South Devon Railway. Now B has always loved trains so he was very excited about this.
South Devon Railway
The seven mile track runs alongside the river Dart, between Buckfastleigh and Totnes, with a stop at Staverton. The journey takes around half an hour which, in my opinion, is just perfect when travelling with kids. We’ve been on many steam train rides before (loads!) and I’ve found some are just far too long. We’ve then had the opposite where some have been ridiculously short!
Fortunately, this one was ideal. The stations were also really lovely, with things to keep little ones amused at both Buckfastleigh and Totnes.
Look at that sky though! It rained most of the morning.
We started our journey at Buckfastleigh station.
A massive plus is the free parking. And there’s loads of it, as well as a small cafe. On this side of the platform there’s also a children’s play area and a miniature steam train. I don’t think this was running and it may be a seasonal thing. It was a nice area though with lots of picnic areas and places to sit. Great if you’re visiting during the summer months.
To get to the main platform, cross the bridge from the car park side. There are toilets and baby changing facilities here, as well as a large cafe and gift shop. There’s also a small museum which B liked looking around. You can go into some of the old carriages and pretend to be a steam train driver.
And We’re off!
We caught the 12.15pm train from Buckfastleigh after a visit to the Otter and Butterfly Farm. The trip lasted around 30 minutes with a stop at Staverton station. The views of the Devon countryside are beautiful. There was hardly a road to be seen and we got lovely views of the river Dart too. We even spotted some rabbits, and plenty of cows.
Totnes Riverside Station
After the half hour journey we arrived at Totnes Riverside station. It’s actually not far at all from the main line station, and about three quarters of a mile into Totnes town. Once we got to the station, we crossed over the line to The Totnes Rare Breeds Farm. Like the Otter and Butterfly Farm, it is literally next door to the station. There is a little cafe there too which can be accessed without paying to enter the farm.
We had a bit of time spare when we got our return train so we had an explore on the platform. There’s a couple of old carriages which you can mooch around.
B enjoyed watching the miniature trains and generally just looking at all the old signs and lights!
I particularly love the old vintage signs.
Half-Term Half Price Highlights!
If you’re looking to ride the rails this half-term then be sure to check out these fantastic offers that South Devon Railway are running. During half-term October weekend 27-28, kids can ride for half price. This is on a round trip ticket and is valid for unlimited travel all day.
Kids for a Quid
South Devon Railway are also running Kids for a Quid during the October half-term week too! If you’re stuck for things to do, and especially if the weather is miserable then I’d def recommend taking a ride. It’s the perfect wet weather attraction as you’re inside all day!
Do your little ones love steam trains? If you’re in Devon then the South Devon Railway is a must. The trip is long enough to keep kids entertained and there’s loads to look at on the platforms while waiting for your train.
Disclaimer: We were gifted our tickets to ride on the South Devon Railway. We genuinely had a fab time and all opinions are honest.