Thursday, June 19, 2014

The Jacobite Steam - A.K.A. The Hogwarts Express From Harry Potter

This past weekend we took my sister to ride the Jacobite Steam. It's the train used in the Harry Potter films! We drove to Fort William from Aberdeen. When planning this trip, I didn't take the single lane roads, and with that the cars driving 15-20 mph UNDER the speed limit. We were still fine, but you may want to keep that in mind if you take this trip.

Maps for those who are unfamiliar with the area:
Our drive in blue.

The red marker shows the location of the train station. The dark grey shaded area across from LIDL is where we parked. I think it was £3 for the entire day.
The drive there was beautiful. Thanks to my sister for some of the photos! (FYI: You can click on them to enlarge the photos.)
 We walked up to the train station along the fence, and the conversation went something like this (We didn't tell Cacie where we were going.)

C: Why are we here?
K: We have some stuff to do.
(Train starts backing into station)
K: Welcome to the Hogwarts Express, Cacie!
C: What? Are you serious?
K: Yep! Better take some pictures.... by the way, we are also riding it.
C: Really?

And here was her reaction:
 When you get on the train, you have to really look to find your seat number. "B" for backwards, "F" for forward-facing. The window seats are labeled near the window above the seat.
 The aisle seats are labeled on the sides of the seats. This can be confusing if you don't notice one or the other.
 Check out the views!

 Snacks and drinks are sold on the train. We were in Carriage E. Seats 23-24. We got the left side of the train. SCORE. Great views.

 We were really excited to see Glenfinnan Viaduct. That's the bridge that you see the train cross in the Harry Potter films. If you want the best picture, go between carriages where you can pull down the window to take pictures without a glare.
We bought this map on the train for £1.

 The Loch Nan Uamh Viaduct was also really cool even though it was smaller than the Glenfinnan.

 The photos below show where the scene was filmed for Dumbledore's White Tomb in the Deathly Hallows. Cool!

 We stopped at the Glenfinnan Station for a short break.

 Back to the tracks!

 Our last stop was Maillag. It was a cute harbor town. We had plenty of time to eat dinner there. We chose the Steam Inn for dinner. It was really good. Tip: Go straight to your restaurant of choice when you get there to make sure you get a table.

 After dinner we got back on the train for the ride back to Fort William. Cacie and I spent lots of time between carriages this time so we could look out of the open windows and get better photos.

Disclaimer: You should NOT try this. We were looking out for each other, but there were loads of trees and tunnels with close walls. It's dangerous. Please be careful.

Tickets were £34 for an adult return and £19 for a child (16 and under) return. I thought it was well worth it!


  1. 1.) I really want to do this - one day!
    2.) Was it pretty much just a tourist attraction or were people actually riding to get from point A to point B?
    3.) Now, I am going to waste a day because I really want to watch Harry Potter!

  2. Kristal SchneiderJune 19, 2014 at 6:31 PM

    1. You should certainly do it!
    2. Some were traveling. I heard a staff member asking for Harry Potter fans, and many shook their heads "no" so he didn't explain locations to them.
    3. We watched every Harry Potter film, one per night, up until we left!


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