During our recent holiday in Devon, we decided to check out the historic electic tramway of Seaton. We weren’t really sure what to expect, how long the trip would take, or how much there would be for our minis to enjoy. We drove into the centre of Seaton, and we discovered that main attractions are fairly central and located next to a public car park.
We headed towards an information point, and we were met by a lovely lady who gave us lots of information about the town and what we could see and do. She explained that the tramway didn’t run through the town, but though a large nature reseve and wetlands with the opportunity to try an spot lots of wildlife such as otters, kingfishers, rabbits, herons and other waterfowl. Our minis enjoy train rides, and also love going on nature hunts so they were really keen to go on the tram.
We bought our tickets from the ticket office and had a few minutes to wait for another tram to arrive before we could set off. Whilst we were waiting our minis spotted a gorgeous candy pink tram and they so desperately hoped that it would be our ride. They were in luck, I really thought they were going to burst whilst they were jumping up and down as it pulled in to let us on! Our minis climbed straight up the stairs to the open top seats – what a great start to our adventure!
The journey on the tram took us out of Seaton along a 3 mile stretch of the Axe Valley. The views across the valley were stunning. There were huge expanses of water, with islands and bird hides dotted along the way. We weren’t eagle eyed enough to spot an otter, but we did spot several herons, ducks and other waterfowl. It was so tranquil, a beautiful half an hour escape to soak up and appreciate the world we live in.
Our journey took us through Colyford to our destination, Colyton Station. When we arrived we were struck with the charm of the station, and how it seemed to have been frozen in time. The pace of life seemed to slow down, and the atmosphere was so relaxed – it even capitivated our minis.
Colyton Station has it’s own Tramstop Cafe which we made our first port of call. It has an extensive menu including breakfasts, jacket potatoes, light meals, main meals, kids meals and a whole array of tempting cakes and scones. We sat in the Garden Room at the back of the station which was bright and airy with sunlight flooding through the roof light windows.
I decided to settle an age old debate – jam first or cream first? I usually prefer my scones Devon style with the cream first, but in the interests of a fair test, and to honour my Cornish readers, I layered up half of my scone with the jam first. I’ll be honest, both halves were a real treat, but I think I will always be a Devonshire cream tea girl at heart!
After our pitstop we went to explore the rest of the station. From the gift shop children can pick up a trail sheet which gives them lots of information about the history of the tramway and the station, and has various pictures to spot that have been hidden around the station. Big Mini enoyed walking up and down the platform looking carefully to find all the pictures on the sheet. It gave us a good opportunity to make sure we saw all the interesting features of the station and kept Big Mini entertained and interested for 15-20 minutes. Once she had found all the pictures she handed her trail sheet in to get a certificate, which she proudly stuck into her school scrapbook when she got home!
Colyton Station also has a small play which our minis had lots of fun in. They especially liked the little wooden train where they could pretend they were off on their own adventures “Toot toot – off we go!” We really apprecited the play area and the trail sheet as it kept our minis occupied and made the day out more enjoyable for them.
After a good time in the play area we headed back to Seaton on the return tram. We sat in a carriage on the way back and with the combination of fun, fresh air and the soothing sound of the tram, we weren’t even half way back before Little Mini fell asleep on her Dad’s lap – a sure sign of a good trip out!
We really enoyed our few hours on the tram and exploring Colyton Station and next time we will explore further and walk into the town of Colyton itself. Seaton tramway also run themed rides throughout the year. During the summer they have Dinosaur Trains which include extra dinosaur activities at Colyton Station and they also run special trains at Halloween and Christmas which I think would be so magical! All the information about the special events and fare prices are on the Seaton Tramway website.
If you like the look of Seaton Tramway, check out our highlights of our visit to Pecorama for another great idea for a day out with it’s own minitature tram, steam trains and beautiful gardens. If you are looking for a more action packed day out for your little thrill-seekers then read all about the fun we had at Crealy Devon.