I’ve been on my travels to Yorkshire recently and I was lucky enough to be invited on some wonderful day trips during my time there. So, expect to see a lot of Yorkshire content over the next few days!
I’m kicking off my Yorkshire series with the first instalment on my experience with the North Yorkshire Moors Railways. I’m a lover of old-fashioned things, I’m a nostalgic soul and my dad is a huge lover of old steam trains. So, I was very excited to be invited to have a day spent on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway which is one of the “must-do” attractions of the North Yorkshire area.
What is it?
The North Yorkshire Moors Railway is an old-fashioned steam train experience where you can ride and see the unspoilt countryside of the North Yorkshire Moors race past your window.
North Yorkshire Moors Steam Train
There are a number of experiences to chose from. Whether you want to travel to the famous seaside town of Whitby or if you want to visit Goathland Station which was famously the filming location for Harry Potter.
You can choose their Seaside Special or Yorkshire Express and travel from Pickering to Whitby Station. Or the North Yorkshire Moors Explorer where you can travel between Grosmont to Pickering Station.
I chose the North Yorkshire Moors Explorer ticket which is a hop-on and hop-off experience meaning you can travel between any stations and get off whenever you like and return whenever you like.
North Yorkshire Moors Railway Waiting Room
Although do be sure to check their timetable for departures, as trains only run every hour and only up until around 5pm every day. So do make sure you give yourself time to explore and get back on time.
Accessibility at North Yorkshire Moors Railway
The North Yorkshire Moors has a number of accessibility measures in place for their disabled visitors.
- Free carer ticket with your paid ticket
- Wheelchair accessible carriages
- Ramp access to trains
- Disabled toileting facilities (at Goathland and Grosmont Station)
- Disabled parking (available at Grosmont, Goathland, Levisham and Pickering)
- For a full rundown of accessibility at all of the North Yorkshire Moors stations check out their accessibility statement on their website.
I started off at Grosmont Station and took the full journey all the way to Pickering Station.
The whole experience felt surreal, the moment I arrived at the station I felt as if I’d stepped back in time. I could smell the coal smoke and hear the rhythmic sound of the steam trained as it pulled into the station.
Everything is so conveniently close to each other, the carpark is a stones throw away from the station and the village of Grosmont had some cute shops and tea rooms on the way.
The station has a cute little tea room, waiting area, gift shop and toilets.
If you have pet dogs you can also bring them for an extra £3 charge. Although this isn’t applicable to working service dogs.
It was all on one level and easy to find as we waited for the train. It makes for a great way to pass the time if you want to grab some snacks for the train or shop for some souvenirs.
The experience traveled through 18 miles of the North Yorkshire countryside and was a great way to see so much of the countryside that you may otherwise not see.
All the trains are different, so it’s a lucky dip which one you’re going to get. Some have private first class carriages which feel like being on board the Hogwarts Express.
If you have a working service dog they are the only dogs permitted in these carriages which is stated on a notice on the carriage door.
On board a food and drinks trolly will serve food and drinks ranging from teas, coffees, crips, chocolates and the cutest train shaped gingerbread biscuits. No cauldron cakes or pumpkin pasties though!
Visiting Goathland Station
Goathland Station is a very popular stop-off point on the route as it served as Hogsmeade Station in the first Harry Potter film.
So, naturally it does get very busy on account of that and you’ll find plenty of people eagerly trying to get a snap of the famous station in action.
The station has accessible toilets and step free access to the gift shop. There is also disabled parking at this station also spaces are limited due the the size of the car park.
There is also ramp access to the station and ramp access to the booking hall. Some of the station has cobbled paving which may make navigating with your wheelchair a little tricky. The station is quite small, the village nearby has some cute pubs and shops. But I’d say you would only need to spend an hour or so before moving on to another station.
Visiting Pickering Station and the Town
Pickering is a great place to visit to do a spot of shopping, have some lunch and enjoy the scenery of a quaint little Yorkshire village. There’s also a museum and a market which has a variety of stalls which I really enjoyed perusing. The station has accessible parking, an accessible toilet and step free access to its gift shop, cafe and ticketing hall.
Personally I would recommend giving yourself more time to visit this station if you decide to opt for the North Yorkshire Moors Explorer Service as there’s a lot to do and you could easily spend a couple of hours here if you decide to stop off for lunch or check out the local museum.
A huge thank you to North Yorkshire Moors Railway for inviting me and to all the staff for being so welcoming on board the service.
It’s something I’d highly recommend if you ever visit North Yorkshire.