Scenic Rail Lines in the Lake District
Concierge.com's insider take:
The Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway (44-122-971-7171; www.ravenglass-railway.co.uk), the oldest narrow-gauge railway in England, was built in 1875 to carry iron ore seven miles from the mines at Boot to long-gone furnaces on the coast. Since the 1960s, the railway has carried tourists in a little steam train that provides a neat way for those without a car to travel from the main rail network, via Ravenglass station, into the heart of the hills. It is also handy for getting to gentle walks through the woods and fields of lower Eskdale. Trains run daily from April to late October, on weekends and for holiday weeks (Christmas, Valentine's) the rest of the year. The scenic Cumbrian coastal railway, part of the National Rail system, links up with the West Coast Main Line at Lancaster and Carlisle (44-207-278-5240; www.nationalrail.co.uk).