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Portsmouth Itinerary

Full day itinerary

From Portsmouth via the Fast Cat

A visit to the Isle of Wight Steam Railway is much more than a train ride with lots to see and do at Havenstreet station. This full-day itinerary enables you to travel to the Steam Railway from Portsmouth via the Fast Cat and Island Line train.

09:15 Fast Cat from Portsmouth Harbour

The crossing takes 22 minutes. Upon arrival at Ryde, head up the ramp into the adjacent station.

  • Alternative Itinerary

    On Red Timetable days, you could catch a later ferry from Portsmouth at 10:15, which has a good connection to the steam train at Smallbrook Junction at 11:13.

09:45 Island Line

Depart Ryde Pier Head at 09:45 for the 8 minute journey on the electric railway to Smallbrook Junction. Cross to the adjacent platform and wait about 25 minutes for your steam train to arrive.

  • Changing trains at Smallbrook Junction is simple and straightforward – just walk up the connecting ramp between the two platforms and collect your ticket at the booking office.

    Then hop aboard one of our Edwardian or Victorian carriages for your steam train journey!

    Alternative Itinerary

    On Red Timetable days, you could catch a later ferry from Portsmouth at 10:15, which has a good connection to the steam train at Smallbrook Junction at 11:13.

10:35 Steam Train journey

Settle back in your traditional Edwardian or Victorian carriage for your journey through the beautiful Isle of Wight countryside hauled by one of our magnificent steam locomotives. All our carriages have traditional compartments – book online to reserve a compartment for your family.

  • Listen as your steam locomotive works hard to haul your train and watch out for deer and red squirrels as you pass through the woodland.

    Pass through sleepy Ashey halt and non-stop through Havenstreet station on your way to Wootton at the far end of the line. The train waits here for around 10 minutes to allow the engine to change ends.

    From Wootton it’s a gentle downhill journey to our main station at Havenstreet.

11:06 Havenstreet station

Arrive at Havenstreet station and soak up the atmosphere of our beautifully restored 1940s station. Havenstreet is the headquarters of the line, with lots to see and do. We’d recommend a couple of hours here to see everything – more when a special event is happening.

  • Why not visit our T-Junction refreshment kiosk, let the kids let off steam at our children’s play area, or just relax in the station garden and watch the trains go by.

    On the opposite side of the line, discover our carriage & wagon workshop; watch our skilled craftsmen at work as they restore our antique wooden-bodies carriages.

    There’s always lots of action in the adjacent loco yard where you can see the engines being prepared for service.

    Shop & Museum

    The Railway Shop is a big hit for anyone with a love of trains! Inside you’ll also find our small artefacts museum which helps tell the story of the Island’s railway history.

    Our shop has a wide range of railway books, model railways and railway gifts – ideal for finding that elusive present for a train-mad relative!

    Inside the museum you’ll find a variety of fascinating and unusual objects, all connected to the Island’s railways. Discover nameplates from early locomotives, historic clocks and signs, and a variety of personal objects that once belonged to members of the railway’s staff.

11:40 Birds of Prey display

Wander down to our Woodland Walk to see the mighty Owls take flight at our morning Birds of Prey display from our friends at Haven Falconry.

  • Free daily flying displays take place at Havenstreet each day, weather permitting.

    11:40 Woodland Flights: See the owls in action on the Woodland Stage

    13:40 Kings with Wings: Falcons and kites take flight in the Events Field

    You can also visit our partner attraction, Haven Falconry. Tucked away in a corner of our Havenstreet station, the friendly team a are dedicated and skilled falconers who have a passion for birds of prey with over 45 years experience of handling and flying birds. Their ethos is education through fun!

    Marvel at the vast collection of owls, hawks, falcons, eagles and vultures where their care and welfare is the teams utmost priority.

    Our Refreshment Rooms offer an good choice of meals; including vegetarian options.

    If you’re after snacks or hot drinks, head to our T-Junction or Coffee Container kiosks.

12:15 Train Story

Head to our Train Story Discovery Centre to discover our fascinating collection of locomotives, carriages and wagons.

  • Train Story tells the story of the Island’s Railways. Our collection spans from the Oldbury carriage, built for the opening of the Ryde to Shanklin line in 1864 to an old London Underground train that saw service on the same line until 2021.

    Step inside our carriages, learn more about the history of the Ryde Pier tramway, and see our locomotives when they’re not in use on the line.

13:10 Return Steam Train journey

Rejoin the steam train for your return journey to Smallbrook Junction. Settle back into your traditional compartment and be transported back to the golden age of train travel.

  • Enjoy views of the Isle of Wight countryside as you pass through Ashey station, then on through the woods to Smallbrook Junction.

13:31 Island Line

Hop back on the Island Line train for the short journey back to Ryde.

  • Why not make the most of your visit to the Island? Take the train to Ryde and explore the town and beaches, of head in the other direction to the resort towns of Sandown and Shanklin.

    Alternative journeys

    There are a few later options if you wish to spend longer at Havenstreet:

    • 14:00 steam train, which connects with the 14:31 Island Line train to Ryde (Red Timetable only)
    • 14:35 steam train, which has a 45 minute wait for the 15:30 Island Line train to Ryde
    • 15:09 steam train, which connects with the 15:30 Island Line train to Ryde (Red Timetable only)
    • 15:40 steam train, which connects with the 16:04 Island Line train to Ryde (Mon-Fri only)