Copeland has a vast and varied coastline, arguably the most picturesque in the North West. With over 10 beautiful beaches, one way to view and experience this first hand would be to travel by train.
From Green Road station in the South following the coast up to Parton, you can travel along this beautiful part of the Lake District, getting off at every accessible stop and experiencing something different at each point.
The journey from Green Road to Parton is around 56 miles and takes about 90 minutes by train, but why not map your journey and stop off at some great places along the way.
We have put together some information to help you experience something new at each train station. Ideas of what you can do in the area, where to eat and even places to stay should you wish to break your journey. Take your time and absorb all that the Western Coast has to offer and meet the real ‘Jewel of Copeland’, it’s people! Always warm and friendly, and ever finding time for a chat. Get used to the tranquil pace of life and the sheer peace of your surroundings. No hustle and bustle here, even the sheep are ‘laid back’ !
Green Road Station
Stunning views can be seen across right around the Duddon valley from this small train station. Just one mile up the road and a short easy stroll from the station is a lovely village called The Green. Here you will find a great pub called ‘The Punch Bowl Inn. ‘The Punch’ as it’s called locally, is open every evening and offers a delightful menu serving delicious locally sourced food.
Millom is the second largest town in Copeland, at this train stop there are lots of local restaurants, cafes and pubs, one even based right on the trains platform itself. Also on the platform is the ‘Discovery Center’ where visitors can find out about all the local history. Within the town there are also lots of lovely bespoke shops to wander around. Should you wish to stay, there are a few B&Bs not far from the train station offering high quality accommodation, Millom is a welcoming town and has lots to see, ask any of the locals and they will happily direct you to what it has to offer.
The next stop on our journey is Silecroft, this village is at the foot of the mighty Black Combe. The splendour of Black Combe is only 600 meters from being classed as a mountain. Locals say this is the best place in the UK where one can see the five kingdoms:- England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales and the Isle of Man. If you would like to take a walk up there, it takes around 2 hours, but the views are truly spectacular. However, if you would prefer a more gentle stroll along a Blue Flag beach then take a leisurely walk along a country road to Silecroft’s vast beach, about one mile away from the station. To quench your thirst there is a quaint ‘Beach Cafe’ selling both hot and cold drinks, delicious homemade food or try one of the outstanding ice creams where there are many flavours to choose from.
Near to the beach one will find a great golf course alongside a caravan park, both popular with locals and tourists alike. Alternatively, closer to the railway station is the Miners Arms Pub which offers lovely food and refreshments.
From Silecroft to Bootle Station you get a real sense of openness. To one side is the Irish sea and to the other inland, the splendour of the mighty Black Combe. In only a short time to you will reach Bootle Station. This location has a lovely quiet beach one mile down the lane, Unfortunately there are no places to eat by the beach, but just one mile inland from the station is a well-known café, The Byre, which is very popular with locals. Bootle also has a lovely gift shop and a convenience store to stock up on snacks, drinks and essentials should you require them.
The village of Ravenglass is also on the coast. This station shares it’s platforms with the famous ‘Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway’ which has miniature trains taking people from Ravenglass through the valley to Eskdale. This is a popular attraction in the area pulling hundreds of tourists in from all over the country. On the station is a lovely café offering a vast array of food and beverages, both hot and cold. Alternatively just a short walk down a lane will bring you to the seafront, where there are many more eateries, pubs and quaint B&B’s establishments to break up that journey. Only two miles up the road is the amazing Muncaster Castle with a full day of attractions to see, including the haunted castle and gardens, the Hawk and Owl Sanctuary and ‘MeadowVole’ Maze to name but a few!
Drigg is a request stop on this line, if you choose to take a look around there is a lovely local café and gift shop and only a short walk to the lovely sandy beach.
The village of Seascale is a small attractive seaside resort, there are miles of sandy beaches and lovely eateries, including a locally famous ‘ice cream parlour’. If you’re looking for accommodation there are several country B&Bs within this area too. If you venture half a mile north of the town you will come upon the relatively unknown Grey Croft Stone Circle at How Farm. Ten standing stones approximately 80 meters in diameter, and in whose center bone fragments have been found.
St Bees is a wonderful village found on the coast with endless miles of golden sands. There are several lovely pubs and eateries in the village, but many people visit the area because it has the largest seabird colony in the north west of England. The Wainwright coast to coast walk also has its starting point in St Bees.
Whitehaven is the largest town in Copeland with over 23 thousand residents, The town has a long history of mining and trade through the harbor. In the 1700s, after London, it was the second busiest port in England. Whitehaven is also classed as one of the 40 ‘Gem Towns’ in England. You can take a walk right around the harbor and visit the Beacon Museum and cafe to one end. Within its town center one will find a vast choice of eateries, pubs and shops, both old and new. With many places to stay over this could be another ‘break in the journey’ possibility. As throughout Copeland the real gem is the people, warm, friendly and always eager to talk!
Our last stop in the borough of Copeland is Parton, which is just around the bay from Whitehaven. Here the railway line is very close to the coast line and travellers can feel as if they are floating above the shoreline. The beach at Parton is mainly pebbles and rocks but very close to the railways station and in a very peaceful setting. There are a few pubs in Parton where travellers can partake of refreshments whilst enjoying the lovely environment.