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Isle of Man self-catering accommodation

Roy Cottage offeres self-catering accommodation on Isle of Man – Roy Cottage is located in Castletown on the Isle of Man

Roy Cottage is a traditional Manx cottage, situated on the sea front, in the scenic conservation area of the ancient capital, Castletown. An ideal base to explore the Isle of Man, Castletown is situated in the south, 10 miles from Douglas and the ferry terminal. The island’s airport is 1 mile away and transport links with buses and steam trains for day trips are excellent.Roy Cottage has been lovingly restored as self-catering holiday accommodation

Railway events on the Isle of Man 2018

Here is a list of railway events  and season dates for the fantastic heritage railways on the Island:

Steam Railway Season
9 March 2018 Until 5 November 2018
Rush Hour on the Railways
30 March 2018 Until 2 April 2018
Manx Heritage Transport Festival
25 July 2018 Until 29 July 2018

Manx Electric Railway
Friday 16 March to Sunday 4 November 2018

Snaefell Mountain Railway
Thursday 29 March to Sunday 4 November 2018

Douglas Bay Horse Tram
Tuesday 29 March to 29 October 2018

Find out more from Isle of Man Railways

and The Isle of Man Steam Railway Supporters’ Association

Castletown festival 2018

The Castletown Festival’s Picnic in the park and sports day 2018 is announced: Sunday 13th May.

A family fun event with fun for all ages with children’s fashion contest, bonny baby competitions, crowning of festival queen 2017, fun stalls, stalls, bouncy castles, refreshments, fancy dress competition in the evening, unique grand confetti carnival, disco dancing and tribute act in Castletown’s ancient Market Square.

Find out more from the Castletown festival facebook page

Top Things to Do in Castletown, Isle of Man

According to Tripadvisor, these are the top things to do in Castletown this year:

#1 of 8 things to do in Castletown

380 reviews




#2 of 8 things to do in Castletown
114 reviews


#3 of 8 things to do in Castletown
97 reviews


#4 of 8 things to do in Castletown
48 reviews


#5 of 8 things to do in Castletown
10 reviews

#6 of 8 things to do in Castletown
10 reviews


#7 of 8 things to do in Castletown
1 review


#8 of 8 things to do in Castletown
4 reviews


 Information from TripAdvisor

Southern Agricultural Show 2017

The annual Southern District Society Agricultural Show

When: 29th & 30th July 2017
Where: Great Meadow, Castletown

The main judging day is on Saturday, when the Supreme Champion will be chosen from the best in the Cattle, Horse, Sheep and Goat sections. Sunday’s judging includes the Harness Section, Show Jumping and Working Hunters for the horses, Meg Lambs, Dog Agility, Companion Dog and the Fun Pet Show. Everybody’s favourites will be there on both Saturday and Sunday including Fur & Feather, the Craft and Produce marquee, Vintage Machinery, and Women’s Institute Competitions.

Darren Jackson’s winning entry for the Centenary Sculpture Competition will be on display for the first time this year. At 3 metres high, his larger than life bull, made from farming implements, will be towering over the Showfield. Come and see it and guess the number of horseshoes it contains to win some fun prizes.

Castletown art trail

Pop Up Art Trail!!!

It has been beautifully co-ordinated by local artist & CCOC member, Eve Adams, who runs her business Paint & Thimble – Handmade Crafts By Eve Adams from her home in Castletown.

Eve has worked with so many talented Manx artists to put this trail together in association with IOM Art Festival , Castletown Town Commissioners and Castletown Chamber of Commerce.

You can find a short bio of all of the artists together with an exhibit of their work in windows throughout Castletown this weekend.

The below map can be collected, free of charge, from Castletown Town Hall (Civic Centre) outer foyer all weekend, during Art Festival hours.

Southern 100 dates 2017

2017 Dates Confirmed
The organisers of the three race meetings held on the Billown Course in the south of the Isle of Man, Southern 100 Racing are pleased to confirm the dates of the events being held in 2017.


The Blackford Financial Services Pre-TT Classic Road Races, which traditionally opens the TT fortnight, will take place on Friday, Saturday and Monday 26th, 27th & 29th May 2017.


Following the Pre-TT meeting is the Radcliffes Butchers Post TT Road Races, which conclude the TT fortnight on Saturday 10th June 2017.


The Isle of Man Steam Packet Company Southern 100 International Road Races will held on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday 10th, 11th, 12th & 13th July 2017.


Top 10 Natural Beauty Spots on the Isle of Man

Discover the ever-changing Manx landscape, rolling hills and costal scenery by visiting some of the Island’s best beauty spots.

1. Calf of Man

The Calf – named Kalfr by the Norsemen – was once a refuge for Christian monks and hermits. Separated from the mainland by 500 metres of fast moving water, the Calf is a haven for wildlife and marine life.

2. Sound Visitor Centre

The striking glass walls of the Sound Visitor Centre on the southern tip of the island offer visitors an uninterrupted 180 degree view of the surrounding scenery. The ideal lookout towards the Calf, the visitor centre features information displays explaining the history and ecology of the local landscape and seascape. Or you can simply visit the cafe, sit back and enjoy the view.

3. Niarbyl (cafe and Visitor Centre)

One of the locations used in the Manx film industry’s biggest successes of recent years, Niarbyl is located on the west coast south of Peel and is an example of one of the Isle of Man’s many beautiful and unspoilt coves. The thatched cottage at Niarbyl stood in for Ned Devine’s house in the film Waking Ned.

4. The Ayres National Nature Reserve

The Ayres National Nature Reserve on the northwest coast is an extensive area of raised beach and dune habitats with dune slacks, maritime heath and lichen heath. Offshore, seals are often seen drifting in the tide while porpoises pursue shoaling fish.

5. Manx National Glens

The Isle of Man has 18 national glens, both coastal and mountain, maintained and preserved in their natural state by the Government’s Forestry Division. Admission is free and all glens can be accessed by car, with several situated near electric tram or steam railway stations, or on bus routes.

6. Close Sartfield Nature Reserve

Visit the Manx Wildlife Trust’s reserve at Close Sartfield to see more than 100,000 examples of colourful orchid.

7. Tynwald Arboretum

Situated in St Johns, the Tynwald National Park and Arboretum is set in more than 25 acres of picturesque countryside. The park was created to mark the millennium anniversary of Tynwald – the world’s longest running continuous parliament. There is a specially constructed shelter and picnic area, a large duck pond and children’s playground to keep the little ones entertained.

8. Scarlett Visitor Centre

Scarlett Visitor Centre is a hotspot for the Island’s feathered community and you’re likely to see shags, cormorants, gulls, oystercatchers and ducks. You’ll also find a number of nature trails which lead beyond the visitor centre and offer a chance for you to explore the area on foot and see the limestone pavements and volcanic rocks including the Stack close up.

9. Maughold Head

Maughold Head is rich in history with an Iron Age fortification crowning its summit. Nearby are the early Christian monuments preserved in the ‘cross shelter’ in Maughold churchyard. The precipitous cliffs are home to significant colonies of seabirds such as Razorbills, Guillemots, Kittiwakes, Fulmars and Shags. Gob ny Rona, a small peninsula of mostly maritime heath and low cliffs, offers impressive views of Ramsey from the coastal footpath.

10. Ballaugh Curragh

Ballaugh Curragh is an area of special scientific interest and the first designated wetland of international importance on the Isle of Man. It consists of small woods, old hay meadows, ponds, bogs and wet grassland, divided by sod hedges and twisting lanes. Running through the area is a nature trail with signs along the way explaining the ecology of the area.

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Top 8 Isle of Man Animal Encounters

From magnificent marine creatures, to a huge population of visiting and migrant birds, and wildlife from around the world, you’ll find it all in the Isle of Man!
1. Underwater Wildlife

The Isle of Man has been increasingly recognised for its clear waters and varied underwater wildlife. Dolphins, whales, porpoise and basking sharks frequent the shoreline and many companies on the Island offer diving or kayaking experiences where you can view these creatures up close.

2. Seals

The Island’s waters are home to a sizeable seal population, the vast majority of which are grey (also known as Atlantic Grey Seals). They can be seen in particularly strong numbers at the Calf Sound, where they ‘haul out’ onto the rocks at low tide.

3. Wallabies

It is believed there are now up to a hundred wallabies roaming free after they escaped from the wildlife park 45 years ago. These beautiful yet timid creatures seem to flourish in the Isle of Man’s climate – despite the belief that they prefer hotter weather.

4. Manx Loaghtan Sheep

Manx Loaghtan is a four-horned sheep, unique to the Isle of Man. The sheep are thought to have been introduced in prehistoric times or to have been introduced by the Vikings.

5. Curraghs Wildlife Park

Curraghs Wildlife Park, located in Ballaugh in the north of the Island, is a haven for wetland animals and home to around 100 species – many of which are endangered in the wild. Animals are grouped together with other wildlife from the same county so you can travel the park continent by continent from America to Australia. You’ll find monkeys, kangaroos, pelicans, pandas, lynx, storks, bats, penguins, otters, reptiles and meerkats!

6. Horse Trams

Horse trams, operated by Douglas Corporation, are a common sight on the promenade during the summer months. They started running along Douglas Promenade in 1876. A charity operates the Home of Rest for Old Horses in Douglas where tram horses enjoy their retirement.

7. Mountain Hares

On your walks in the northern hills around the Isle of Man, you may encounter rare mountain hares. It is a separate species to the more common brown hare which can be found in all parts of the island on lower land. However, even the brown hare is relatively rare these days, having declined dramatically throughout the British Isles since the 1960s, with an estimated drop from 12 million to just one million animals.

The mountain hare can be found in northern upland areas among the heather and into the snow line. It is slightly smaller and rounder in appearance than the brown hare, has smaller ears which are held upright and an all-white tail.

8. Manx Cat

The Isle of Man is home to the tailless Manx cat. Many have a small ‘stub’ of a tail, but Manx cats are best known as being entirely tailless and it is the distinguishing characteristic of the breed. There are various legends that seek to explain why it has no tail. In one of them, Noah closed the door of the ark when it began to rain and accidentally cut off the Manx’s tail. Another legend claims that the Manx is the offspring of a cat and a rabbit which is why it has no tail and rather long hind legs.

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Top 10 ways to reach new heights on the Isle of Man

Whether it’s by bus, tram or even on foot, setting your sights higher is easy on the Isle of Man. Check out our top 10 list to really elevate your trip to the Isle of Man.

No. 1 – Picnic on the peak – Enjoy your lunch with a different view

Take time out to have a picnic on Douglas Head and enjoy the fresh air. Now complete with benches, BBQ spots and more it makes for a perfect afternoon to sit and watch the hustle of bustle of Douglas beneath you and see the boats arriving in the harbour. While you’re in the area don’t forget to look at the Great Union Camera Obscura, for just £2 entry you’ll see cameras how the Victorian used them.

No. 2 – View the seven kingdoms – A trip up Snaefell will be the peak of your visit.

See the seven kingdoms (England, Ireland, Wales, Scotland, the Isle of Man and the kingdoms of Heaven and the Sea) at the highest point – either by a trip on the Manx Electric Railway or by foot if you fancy a challenge. Be sure to check the time of the Snaefell Summit Dining events, a great combination of travelling and dining. So relax, raise a glass and enjoy the stunning views.

No. 3 – Take a walk on the wild side – See amazing sights, cliff edges, wildlife and stunning scenery.

The Raad Ny Foillan or ‘Way of the Gull’ is a demanding but highly rewarding walk along the Island’s coast. The route has a total distance of approximately 95 miles but can be broken into sections for you to pick and choose the areas you wish to explore.

No. 4 – Ride the mountain – Let the wind flow through your hair

Travel along the Mountain section of the world famous Isle of Man TT course. Explore it for yourself in your car or on a hired bike…or if you fancy sitting back and relaxing while you take it all in why not take a Trike Tour.

No. 5 – Take the plunge – For a blood pumping experience

If you like to get that adrenalin flowing, why not (with expert guidance, of course) join a group and experience coasteering, an exciting combined rock and water activity, along a section of stunning coastline. Adventurous Experiences and The Venture Centre both offer coasteering trips all around the Island including a special view of Peel Castle not seen by many.

No. 6 – Unleash the inner Tarzan in you – Climb trees, hang from ropes and whiz down the zip-line

Travel through the trees on the maze of rope and wires in one of the Island’s largest plantations, South Barrule with Ape Mann Adventure Park. Plus new for 2014, a high rope course, and with the zip wire you’ll soon forget where (and how old) you are. The adventure park also includes one of the UK’s highest sets of Monkey tree climbing hardware which is a challenge for anybody with a head for heights.

No. 7 – Conquer new heights – Enjoy the Manx coastline from a different perspective

Test yourself mentally and physically against the craggy cliffs which provide a stunning backdrop to climbing and abseiling sessions with The Venture Centre or Adventurous Experiences. Or if the weather turns, try the indoor climbing centre with over 2000 square foot of climbing wall! For complete beginners, seasoned outdoor climbers, bouldering geniuses or anything in-between, visit Hot Rocks Climbing wall and enjoy overhanging sections, vertical walls, traverses, bouldering caves and more.

No. 8 – Go wild in the country – Get away from it all and watch the wildlife in action

Located at the Ayres, Ballaghennie boasts a viewing platform where you can catch diving Gannets, Oyster Catchers, plus many other birds and marine wildlife, and if you’re lucky you might spot an inquisitive seal too. A site of major ecological significance, parts having been designated as an Area of Special Scientific Interest and as a National Nature Reserve. The shingle beach provides a great walk and leads to the marked Nature Trail which winds through the marram dunes and onto the expanse of heath with its extensive lichen flora.

No. 9 – Climb the world’s largest working waterwheel – For breath-taking elevated views

Standing at over 72 feet high the wheel, which is also known as Lady Isabella, has been one of the Isle of Man’s most popular tourist attractions for well over 150 years. Try counting how many stairs it takes to get you to the top and then enjoy the rewarding view of Laxey and the surrounding mines, don’t forget to wave to those at the bottom for a great photo opportunity.

No. 10 – Enjoy entertainment from ‘The Gods’ – Choose from shows, bands, comedians or Ghost Tours!

Finally before you depart the Isle of Man take a tour with the ‘Gods’ of the Gaiety and find out all the amazing history of this ancient Victorian Theatre. The Gaiety Theatre is a jewel in the Manx heritage crown. Steeped in history and tradition, the Gaiety is one of the finest remaining examples of work from the legendary theatre architect, Frank Matcham. Not for the easily spooked, Isle of Man Ghost Tours offer a Gaiety Theatre Experience tour to discover the tales of The Man in Grey, the strange going’s on in The Gods and the lady who haunts seat B14

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Rushen Heritage Trust Summer Exhibition

A recent exhibition organised by members of Rushen Heritage Trust, focusing on the hey-day of tourism in the south of the Island, attracted a large number of visitors to Port Erin; many of whom reminisced about those halcyon days.
Situated in St Catherine’s Church Hall, a stone’s throw from Port Erin Bay, the organisation’s volunteers had brought together a wealth of information and memories describing how visitors entertained themselves in Port Erin, Port St Mary and beyond.
The main thrust of what was on offer revolved around an extensive array of outdoor events, which afforded visitors a range of activities to keep them rooted in the south of the Island.
These were simpler, less complicated times, when they were more inclined to relax in a deckchair on the beach, or challenge a member of the family to a leisurely game of ‘pitch and putt’.
Paddling pools and Beach Missions kept the younger generation busy, whilst their elders may be more inclined towards a game of bowls, or a round of golf.

Boating, fishing, bird watching (the feathered variety) and cycling were also great favourites, along with special excursions to the Calf of Man and exciting coach trips to other Island destinations.
The once popular Traie Meanagh open-air baths, situated in what was advertised as one of the sunniest and most sheltered creeks in Port Erin Bay, attracted scores of spectators to watch talented divers perform at the sea water pool.
Both Port Erin and Port St Mary are also remembered for their selection of hotels such as The Belle Vue and the Balqueen, amongst others, and a range of eateries to satisfy hungry visitors; the most well known probably the distinctive Collinson’s Cafe, now in private ownership.
Chapel Bay, Happy Valley and Port St Mary Town Hall also figured in the exhibition along with the picturesque Breagle Glen and Bradda Glen.
Valerie Caine
© July 2016
(Courtesy of the Southern Chronicle)