All-aboard the Hogwarts Express: A Ride on the Jacobite

This past month of October, I had one of the most magical experiences ever: riding the Hogwarts Express. Although the journey didn't end at Hogwarts, it was a LOT of fun. Given that we went on a last minute trip to Scotland for a long weekend and we didn't have much time, we decided to take a tour with Discover Scotland. 

Their minibuses leave from Glasgow and take you on a scenery route to Mallaig, following the full length of Loch Lomond, stopping at both Glencoe, where you can already see some of the locations from the movies, and of course, Glenfinan, where you get a glimpse of the famous viaduct. 

Once you arrive at Mallaig, you have time for a walk in this quaint little coast town and for a quick lunch. We opted for fish and chips to take away and we sat at the harbour, enjoying the beautiful views.


And then it's train time! At Mallaig train station, you board the Jacobite, the actual steam train used in the movies as the Hogwarts Express. Not only that, the Jacobite follows the West Highland Railway Line, a journey described by many as one of the great railway journeys of the world. 

During the journey, that lasts about 2 hours, you have time to sit and enjoy the stunning scenery, take as many pictures as you want and basically get ready for the most magical moment. The train crosses the Glenfinnan Viaduct, known not only for its remarkable engineering BUT as the way to the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

As you cross the viaduct, the atmosphere inside the train is crazy. Everyone is trying to get the best pics, squealing and basically having a great time. I have to say though that I had to fight for a good spot to capture this moment on camera. But given that the viaduct is quite long, I think everyone had enough time to get their own memento. 

Once you arrive at Fort William, you can still get a couple more pics with the engine. From there, we continued our tour to go back to Glasgow, stopping at Drovers Inn, which is said to be “haunted” and there are many tales and sightings of ghouls and ghosts wandering around this ancient Scottish Inn. For us, it was the perfect place to enjoy some evening refreshments by a roaring log fire.

All in all, a magical and steamy day! I had never taken a steam train before and just enjoying its sounds and smells was already a treat. Definitely an experience I recommend to any Harry Potter fan looking for something a bit different. If you have more time, you can buy return tickets and follow the whole journey from Fort William to Mallaig and back. But if you are tight on time, taking a tour like ours is a great idea. 

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1 comentaris

  1. A lovely write up. I went on the same journey two years ago and loved it. Stunning and beautiful