On the right track to Bala

Bala Lake Railway

Narrow-gauge railway along southern shore of Llyn Tegid

The Bala Lake Railway is a narrow-gauge track along the southern shore of Llyn Tegid, Wales' largest natural lake.

The 2ft-gauge line offers a charming nine-mile return journey through the beautiful scenery of the Snowdonia National Park and the nearby mountains of Arenig Fawr and Aran Benllyn.

The line, which is 7.2km-long, is built on a section of the former standard-gauge Ruabon to Barmouth route that closed in 1965.

By 1969 the track had been lifted but local engineer George Barnes saw the potential of the lakeside section for local and tourist traffic and development of the line as a narrow-gauge railway began.

The railway opened on 13 August 1972 operating a small industrial diesel engine with two open carriages on 2.4km of track between Llanuwchllyn and Pentrepiod.

The line was extended to Llangower by the start of 1973 and two years later reached a new temporary station at Pant-yr-hen-felin. The following year the line reached Bala.

Llanuwchllyn ('the village above the lake') is the headquarters of the railway and regular trains run to the delightful market town of Bala, stopping at Pentrepiod Halt, an operational request stop, and Llangower, the main intermediate station.

The round trip of about one hour can be broken at any of the stations to enjoy other activities, with the railway providing an ideal focal point from which to experience the many attractions the lake has to offer.

The railway is assisted in its operations by the volunteer enthusiasts of the Bala Lake Railway Society. As well as providing train crews, society members also carry out a wide range of other tasks connected with the maintenance and running of the railway.

Visit the Bala Lake Railway website