Puffing Billy had been on our to do list for a while, so when Nanny suggested we do a little day trip, we all jumped on board!
We had originally planned to do the Belgrave - Gembrook trip, but it was suggested to us at the ticket box, that with our boys being so young, we stop at Lakeside instead. I think this was good advice as we certainly felt that we had enough Puffing Billy time and we enjoyed the Lakeside stop. Although Puffing Billy is free for under 4s, it can still work out quite expensive- but we have the Entertainment Book which has a 25% off voucher that can be used for up to 4 tickets.
We couldn't help but feel that we had stepped back in time at Belgrave Station, it was beautiful, and we found a nice carriage- with some padded seats (some carriages have wooden seats) and we waited for the 9.50 departure time. We were finally on our way, the weather was 31 degrees when we went but you would never had known it from in the carriage as the beautiful journey travels through huge trees that provide shelter from the sun, and with the windows being open, we were all comfortable.!i imagine it would be very cold durning winter though, so rug up in the cooler months!
Nanny had a nice firm grip on Mr 3 who wanted to join in the fun with the other kids who were dangling their legs through the open windows of the train. Our first trip we were in one of the first carriages, and we didn't notice the smell of the steam as much as we did on the way back when we were in one of the middle carriages.
We arrived at Lakeside about an hour later. We hadn't packed a picnic, but I wish we did. We instead picked up a few things from the cafe, but options were limited. We planned to head back on the next train, but if we were better prepared we could have stayed much longer. There is a small playground, some Paddle Boats, and on days over 24 degrees, there is a pool with lifeguard supervision, it's only a small pool with the shallows being .5m and only getting up to .9, but perfect for the younger children to cool off.
On the way back it was our turn to have some fun- although I wish we had chosen one of the carriages that had a widened ledge, despite my generous padding 😜 I was much more comfortable on my seat. The day had certainly been long enough for our little Mr 2, so it was a good thing we arrived back at Belgrave Station in time for his nap.
We had a really beautiful day on Puffing Billy and we can't wait to return again soon- maybe for the Day out with Thomas where adults are at children's prices.
For more information on pricing and timetables see-