Isle of Man and the TT

Resort: Isle of Man and the TT
Operator: Saga
Destination: British Isles
Price From: £1475.00

From TT to Strawberry Fields

Sail the Celtic Sea up to St George’s Channel and across the Irish Sea to discover the historic port cities and ancient islands that dot our coastal waters. Raise a glass in Dublin, celebrate the achievements of the Fab Four in Liverpool, drop anchor off the beautiful Isle of Man when the TT races are in full swing, and stop off at the Isle of Portland to admire the sweeping drama of the Jurassic Coast. On board ship you can party to live bands in both Dublin and Liverpool.

Saga price includes…

  • All meals on board, including 24-hour room service
  • A choice of wines at lunch and dinner
  • All on-board gratuities
  • Optional travel insurance and additional cancellation rights, or a reduction if not required
  • Entertainment and activities
  • Welcome cocktail party and Captain’s dinner
  • All port taxes and visas
  • UK mainland travel service to and from Dover

Itinerary

Dover

Embark Saga Sapphire.

Depart 1600.

Known as the gateway of England, Dover welcomes millions of visitors from all over the globe each year in its role as the ferry capital of the world and the second busiest cruise port in the UK. The White Cliffs Country has a rich heritage. Within the walls of the town’s iconic castle, over 2,000 years of history waits to be explored, whilst the town’s museum is home to the Dover Bronze Age Boat, the world’s oldest known seagoing vessel. The town’s cliffs that are a welcome sight for today’s cross-channel travellers also served as the control centre for the Dunkirk evacuation in 1940.

FactFile

Population

40,000

Language

English

Currency

British Pounds Sterling

Time Difference

N/A

Climate

Temperate with mild summers and cool winters, with a prevailing south-westerly wind throughout the year.

Ship berths at

Dover Cruise Terminal.

Distance from Centre

1 mile

Distance from gangway to coach

400 yards, through the cruise terminal.

Useful Information

Shopping

The main shops are found on Cannon Street and Biggin Street.

Shopping Opening Hours

0900 to 1730 Monday to Saturday. A few shops are open on Sundays.

Post Office

The main Post Office is located inside the Costcutter store on Pencester Road.

Tourist Office

The Tourist Office is located inside the Town Museum on Market Square.

How to Phone Home

For the UK dial the full STD code followed by the subscriber’s number.

Emergency Services

Dial 999.

Banks

Banks and ATMs are located on Cannon Street.

Spend the day at sea.

Dublin

Arrive 0730. Depart 1700.

Explore Dublin whose literary heritage and friendly character make it one of Europe’s most popular capitals. Located on the eastern side of Ireland and intersected by the Liffey, this delightfully compact capital is home to two cathedrals, Dublin Castle and Trinity College. There’s so much to see and do, from enjoying a Guinness in a traditional bar, to exploring a host of museums and art galleries. If you prefer to relax with a little retail therapy, the capital has an excellent array of shops and stores, especially on bustling Grafton Street. Or you could join us for lunch at the Abbey Tavern followed by some traditional Irish music and dance.

Situated on Ireland’s east coast, straddling the river Liffey, Dublin is the capital of the Irish Republic and the country’s principal port, but remains a delightfully compact city that has maintained its elegant Georgian and Victorian architecture with little of the large-scale modern redevelopment seen in most European capitals. It remains largely a town of terraced houses, lively streets and beautiful squares, where the spires of the two cathedrals and domes of the Four Courts and Customs House still dominate the skyline. In addition to its splendid public buildings, Dublin is particularly rich in domestic architecture of the 18th century: the fine Georgian mansions give the city much of its character. You may like to window-shop in Grafton Street, stroll through St Stephen’s Green or visit Temple Bar – the arts and entertainment district – where you could enjoy a traditional pint of Guinness!

FactFile

Population

506,211 (city)

Language

English

Currency

Euro

Time Difference

Same as UK

Climate

Dublin experiences a temperate climate without extremes of temperature. Summers are mild with a daytime average of 19.6°C. There is a risk of rain at any time.

Ship berths at

Ocean Pier

Distance from Centre

3¼ miles

Distance from gangway to coach

Less than 100 yards

Useful Information

Shopping

The main area for shopping is located in Grafton Street and Nassau Street.

Shopping Opening Hours

The majority of shops are open from Monday to Saturday between 0900-1730. There is limited Sunday opening.

Post Office

The main Post Office is located on O’Connell Street, open from Monday to Saturday between 0800-1800. Closed on Sundays.

Tourist Office

Dublin Tourism is located in Suffolk Street. Opening hours are from Monday to Saturday between 0900-1730. 1030-1500 on Sundays.

How to Phone Home

To call the UK dial 00 44 followed by the full STD number but omitting the first zero

Emergency Services

Dial 112 or 999 for all emergencies.

Banks

Banks are located in Grafton Street and College Green and are generally open from Monday to Friday between 1000-1600. ATMs are available.

Shore excursions you may be able to enjoy:

Countryside Drive and Glendalough

Head out into the County of Wicklow, which is notable for the great variety of its scenery. Your destination is Glendalough or ‘The Glen of Two Lakes’, one of the most important monastic sites in Ireland. Founded in the sixth century by Saint Kevin, the valley where this monastery lies played a vital part in the Golden Age of Ireland. On arrival, you are invited to a refreshing cup of tea or coffee before heading to explore the monastic ruins. This was once a centre of learning inhabited by thousands of students from Ireland and Europe, and your expert guide will bring this historic site to life as you explore the ancient remains. One of the finest examples of an Irish Round Tower can be seen here, and the imposing cathedral stands in harmony with the natural beauty of its surroundings. A truly remarkable place with a unique atmosphere, time spent in Glendalough is always memorable and is sure to be a highlight of your visit to Ireland.

The total walking distance on this excursion is approximately 600 yards. The guided visit of the monastic ruins involves some walking over uneven surfaces and 10 steps.

Dublin and the Liffey

Your relaxing tour begins with a coach transfer to the River Liffey to board the Liffey Voyager for a gentle scenic cruise along the river while you learn about the long and fascinating history of Dublin. Rejoining your coach you will head on a panoramic drive through the city to see other highlights such as the Georgian Squares of Merrion and Fitzwilliam and the renowned Dublin Doorways. You will also see St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Founded in 1190, St. Patrick’s is perhaps best known for its association with Jonathan Swift, who was Dean here from 1713 to 1745. Next, drive past the Guinness Brewery, home of the Black Stuff for which Dublin is famous. On finally to Phoenix Park, Europe’s largest enclosed public park, where you will see the homes of Ireland’s President and American Ambassador.

Flat comfortable walking shoes, layered clothing and an umbrella are recommended. There are a few steps to negotiate when boarding the boat. This is a mainly panoramic tour and you will not enter any of the sites mentioned. The order of this tour may vary. This tour is subject to strict maximum numbers.

Dublin City and the General Post Office

Bustling, cosmopolitan, ancient but young at heart, Dublin is one of Europe’s liveliest cities, where medieval and 17th-century buildings stand comfortably amid the trappings of a 21st-century city. Fine Georgian mansions, many of them with historical associations, lend a sober beauty to the city’s wide streets and well-proportioned squares. Leaving the port, a panoramic drive through the city will introduce you to landmarks such as Trinity College, the fine Merrion and Fitzwilliam Squares and the Gothic St Patrick’s Cathedral. Your destination is the main Irish Post Office building, Dublin’s GPO, which holds a place of particular symbolic importance for Irish people. It was the headquarters of the men and women who took part in the Easter Rising of April 1916, which led to Irish independence and the creation of a new State. Since its construction in 1818, the GPO has witnessed many other historic events, and on a tour of the building you can dive into this history and discover the many tales it has to tell. Touch screens, authentic historic artefacts, videos, costumes and illustrated displays will all enhance your experience. After your tour of the GPO, it is time to re-join your coach and make your way back to the ship.

The tour of the Post Office involves walking approximately 800 yards inside the building, with 40 steps, 30 of which may be avoided by using a lift. You will also need to walk about 200 yards between the coach drop-off point and the GPO and back again. Any additional walking during photo-stops on the city tour is optional and entirely at your discretion.

Literary Dublin

No fewer than four Nobel Prizes for Literature have been awarded to writers associated with Dublin: George Bernard Shaw, W B Yeats, Samuel Beckett and Seamus Heaney: the city has produced many other writers of international repute. Discover this heritage as you leave the pier with your guide and drive to the city centre, passing along the way the neo-Classical 18th-century Customs House. Your first stop is at Trinity College, where you walk through the grounds. A short walk along Nassau Street takes you next to Merrion Square, where you stop for photos of the Oscar Wilde monument. Re-joining your coach, continue to St Patrick’s Cathedral, pausing to view the exterior. Jonathan Swift, author of ‘Gulliver’s Travels’, was Dean here from 1713 until 1745. Crossing next to the other bank of the Liffey, stop for an audio-guided tour of the Writers’ Museum on Dublin’s North Side. Located in a magnificently restored 18th-century mansion on Parnell Square, this museum provides the best overview of Irish writing from the Book of Kells to modern times. Here you can see letters, portraits and first editions of works by Swift, Goldsmith, Sheridan, Congreve, Shaw, Wilde, Yeats and Bram Stoker, the author of ‘Dracula’. A separate area focuses on 20th-century writers, some of whose memorabilia and possessions are on display. Following your visit to this wonderful museum, your coach takes you back to the port.

You will need to walk approximately one mile altogether, with some cobblestones, uneven ground and a few steps around Trinity College, and a flight of 30 steps at the Writers’ Museum. You will be on your feet for roughly one hour while touring the museum. Casual, layered clothes and flat-soled walking shoes are recommended, and you should bring a raincoat or umbrella.

Malahide Castle and Gardens

Malahide is a rare example of an Irish Anglo-Norman castle that was inhabited for 800 years by the same family. The Talbots lived here from 1185 to 1973, when the seventh Baron Talbot died. The property is now in the care of Fingal County Council. The castle stands in grounds of more than 270 acres, which are made up of fields, forests and parkland, together with attractive formal gardens. The history of the Talbot family is told by the numerous family portraits that hang in the Great Hall, telling their own story of Ireland’s stormy history. In 1975, the late Baron Talbot’s sister Rose sold the castle to the Irish State to help fund her inheritance taxes. Many of the contents had already been sold, leading to considerable public controversy. Some of the original furnishings have since been restored to the castle, and other objects from the Irish National Gallery, including portraits and period furniture, can now be seen on display. The castle has recently undergone a …12,000,000 restoration programme to enhance its appeal to visitors, and you can now visit the Secret Walled Gardens and a beautiful Victorian glasshouse that have never before been open to the public. Following your memorable tour of the castle and its demesne, you return to Dublin Port via the coastal road, enjoying fine views of Dublin Bay and the mountains beyond.

This tour involves walking at least 1£¼ miles, with about 60 steps in the castle. We recommend that you wear comfortable shoes and light layered clothing, and bring a waterproof jacket or umbrella.

Panoramic Tour of Dublin

Sheltered by the Wicklow Mountains and divided by the River Liffey, Dublin is not only home to an array of attractive architecture but also enjoys a scenic setting on Ireland’s east coast. North of the Liffey you pass the International Financial Services Centre, the magnificent Customs House, O’Connell Street, the General Post Office and the Spire of Dublin, a stainless-steel obelisk 400 feet high that was inaugurated in 2003 on the site of the former Nelson’s Pillar, destroyed by a bomb attack in 1966. Heading south, your tour will pass Christ Church and St Patrick’s Cathedrals and Dublin Castle. You also see some of the finest Georgian parts of Dublin, such as Merrion Square and St Stephen’s Green. Your tour concludes with a drive past the imposing government buildings and the National Museum and National Gallery, before heading back to your ship.

The only walking on this excursion will be at the photo stops which will be at the passengers discretion. Order of sights may vary.

Powerscourt Estate

This tour begins with a scenic drive to Powerscourt House and Gardens. Set at the foot of Great Sugar Loaf Mountain, the gardens were established in the mid-1700s by Daniel Robertson, and feature a circular lake flanked by two statues of Pegasus, an Edwardian Japanese garden and a terraced Italian garden. The Palladian mansion was gutted by a fire in 1974 but has since been restored and now houses an exhibition, craft shop and restaurant. You have time for browsing and shopping for souvenirs before returning to your ship.

The gardens at Powerscourt are steeply terraced, and you can explore them at your leisure. There are approximately 40 steps down to the lake and the Japanese Garden. The main exhibits are on the ground floor of the house, but to see some of the unfurnished rooms you will need to climb a flight of stairs. The total walking distance on this tour is approximately one mile if you wish to make the most of your visit to the gardens.

Traditional Song and Dance with Lunch

Welcome to Dublin, Ireland’s capital city, steeped in history and youthful energy. Medieval, Georgian and modern architecture provides a backdrop to a friendly bustling port, where the cosmopolitan and charming converge in the delightful diversity that is Dublin. Leaving the ship, travel by coach along the seafront to the fishing village of Howth. Nestling beside the ancient ruins of Howth Abbey, with the lovely fishing harbour and marina below, is the Abbey Tavern, an ideal location where you can savour the genuine atmosphere of old Ireland and celebrate in style. As you enter the tavern, you will be struck by its old-world charm, authenticity and simplicity. Blazing turf fires, original stone walls, flagstone floors and gaslights make for a truly warm welcome. In surroundings full of character, following your welcome drink, you will feast on a typically Irish lunch, while enjoying the Abbey Tavern show. This features the world famous Abbey Tavern singers and musicians, who are sure to delight you with their lively music, singing and the very best of Irish dancing during an exclusive performance.

This excursion involves minimal walking, as the coach should be able to pull up just outside the Abbey Tavern. Inside, there are about three steps to negotiate. The welcome drink consists of a glass of Guinness or a soft drink of your choice. Dietary requests must be advised to the Shore Excursion Manager on board ship at least 72 hours prior to arrival.

Liverpool

Arrive 0630. Depart 2100.

The seaport city of Liverpool has an impressive waterfront dominated by the ‘Three Graces’: the Royal Liver Building, the Cunard Building and the Port of Liverpool Building. Renowned as the home town of the Beatles, here you can visit Strawberry Fields, Penny Lane and learn more about the Fab Four in the Beatles Story walk-through exhibition. You might also like to visit the childhood homes of Lennon and McCartney – both recently opened by the National Trust. Then there are the city’s many other cultural attractions including the Tate Liverpool and the Merseyside Maritime Museum which highlights the city’s heyday as a centre for shipbuilding – just as well you have a full day and an evening here!

The internationally famous city of Liverpool grew as a seaport on the River Mersey. The waterfront is dominated by the ‘Three Graces’: the Royal Liver Building, with its famous Liver Birds, the Cunard Building and the Port of Liverpool Building. The city is renowned as the hometown of the Beatles, and you can explore the history of the ‘Fab Four’ at the Beatles Story walkthrough exhibition. There are many other cultural attractions, including the City Museum, the Sudley Art Gallery and Liverpool’s branch of the Tate Gallery, which is located in the restored Albert Dock complex. Familiar to television viewers as a backdrop to ‘Brookside’, ‘The Liver Birds’ and ‘Bread’, Liverpool is a vibrant city and its inhabitants are noted for their friendliness.

FactFile

Population

466,400 (2011 Census)

Language

English

Currency

British Pounds Sterling

Time Difference

N/A

Climate

Temperate with a risk of rain at any time of the year

Ship berths at

Liverpool Cruise Terminal, Princes Parade

Distance from Centre

Approximately ½-mile

Distance from gangway to coach

Approximately 50 yards

Useful Information

Shopping

The main shopping area is around Clayton Square, and other shopping centres include Liverpool One, the Metquarter and Cavern Walks.

Shopping Opening Hours

Shops are typically open on weekdays from 0900-1730, with some shopping malls open Monday to Saturday 0930-2000 and 1100-1700 on Sundays.

Post Office

There are post offices at the Corn Exchange off Brunswick Street and inside the Liverpool One branch of WH Smith, open weekdays from 0900-1730.

Tourist Office

The Tourist Information Centre is at Albert Dock, and is open from 1000-1730. Telephone: 0151 707 0729. Website: www.visitliverpool.com

How to Phone Home

Dial the full STD code followed by the subscriber’s number.

Emergency Services

Dial 999.

Banks

Most main banks have branches in and around Lord Street – ATMs are widely available and there is one at Albert Dock.

Shore excursions you may be able to enjoy:

Iconic Liverpool

Enjoy a comprehensive coach tour of the iconic highlights of this cosmopolitan port, which was European Capital of Culture in 2008 and was of course the home town of the world famous Beatles. You stop for a short visit to the neo-Gothic Church of England Cathedral: completed in 1978, this vast red sandstone structure is the largest church building in the UK and the seventh-largest in the world. You also stop for photos outside the Roman Catholic Cathedral, a complete contrast to the Anglican building with its circular plan and multi-coloured glass lantern-tower. Your tour also takes you past the Cunard and White Star buildings, the Royal Philharmonic Hall and the rejuvenated Albert Dock complex, one of Liverpool’s UNESCO World Heritage Maritime Mercantile City sites. Continuing your ‘Magical Mystery Tour’ it is impossible to ignore the overwhelming role of the Beatles and their music in putting Liverpool on the map. You will see some of the famous sites associated with the ‘Fab Four’, and your informative local guide will tell you more about this remarkable group who enjoyed their first taste of chart success 50 years ago. Liverpool has been the home to many other musicians, artists, writers and sportsmen, and you will discover more about their heritage and about the city’s history and architecture during this fascinating tour.

Most sightseeing is from the coach, but the visit to the cathedral involves walking approximately 200 yards, with two short flights of about six steps, with handrails.

Llangollen Steam Railway and Tour

This excursion starts with a leisurely drive over the border into Wales, stopping for photos at the stunning Horseshoe Pass, 1,367 feet above sea level, before reaching the charming town of Llangollen, famous for its annual Eisteddfodd International Music Festival. Here you enjoy a free-flow tour of Plas Newydd, a lovely old house that was home to Lady Eleanor Butler and Miss Sarah Ponsonby – the Ladies of Llangollen – from 1780 to 1829. They made their home a centre for Regency High Society, and today you can still see some of their possessions in the house, and you may stroll through their gardens just as William Wordsworth, Sir Walter Scott and the Duke of Wellington did in days gone by. A picnic lunch will be provided. Continue afterwards to Llangollen’s lovingly restored railway station to board a steam train to the small and picturesque town of Carrog. The railway runs alongside the River Dee and the whole journey takes place within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Closed to passengers in 1965, the railway was re-opened by enthusiasts in stages from 1975, reaching Carrog in 1996. Leaving your train at Carrog station, re-join your coach for the drive back to Liverpool.

This tour involves walking approximately half-a-mile, with a few steps at the entrance to Plas Newydd and when getting on and off the train, which uses old-fashioned slam-door carriages. There is a flight of stairs to the upper floor of Plas Newydd: anyone wishing to remain on the ground floor may enjoy a ‘virtual tour’ of the upper floor on a video screen. Trains are normally steam-hauled, but a heritage diesel locomotive or multiple-unit may be substituted in the unlikely event of an engine failure. The train is not exclusive to Saga. Views will depend on the weather. Casual lightweight clothing and comfortable shoes are recommended, and you should bring a raincoat or umbrella.

Port Sunlight

Discover the highlights of cosmopolitan Liverpool and pay a visit to the charming Victorian garden village of Port Sunlight. Start with a panoramic drive to see the aptly named Hope Street, where Liverpool’s two symbols of Christianity face each other at opposite ends of the street. Pause to photograph the vast Anglican cathedral, one of the great buildings of the 20th century, and see some of the famous sites associated with the ‘Fab Four’ before heading out to the village of Port Sunlight. Built in 1888 by William Hesketh Lever, later Lord Leverhulme, for the workers in his soap factory, Port Sunlight was designed by around 30 different architects to ensure a variety of building styles, which not only provided attractive housing for the employees, but also appealing recreational areas and community amenities. After a panoramic tour of the village by coach, visit the Lady Lever Art Gallery, one of the most opulent and beautiful galleries in the country, built as a dedication to W H Lever’s beloved wife. The gallery houses Lever’s renowned collection of Pre-Raphaelite works including masterpieces by Millais, Ford Madox Brown and Rossetti. It is also home to magnificent collections of Wedgwood china, outstanding carved and inlaid 18th-century furniture, rich tapestries, Grecian urns, Roman statuary and Chinese porcelain as well as classical antiquities and memorabilia. Return to Liverpool after discovering these artistic treasures.

The tour involves minimal walking at photo-stops, plus around 50 minutes’ standing and easy walking on the flat at the Lady Lever Art Gallery. There are no steps other than on and off the coach.

The Beatles Experience

Liverpool is synonymous with the Beatles, and as you would expect they are well remembered in the city of their birth. The group’s legacy to Liverpool has contributed to the city’s reputation as a home of great popular music and talent. Join a Beatles expert today for a ‘Magical Mystery Tour’ of Liverpool, featuring the life and times of Britain’s most famous pop group. Begin your exploration with a panoramic coach tour and see some of the places that inspired their song writing, such as Penny Lane, Strawberry Fields and other sites associated with their formative years. This tour finishes at The Beatles Story, a unique Beatles-themed museum which offers you an atmospheric insight into the life, culture and music of the band and the ‘Beatlemania’ that still exists today. Listening to an audio-guide, walk through the museum to see the exhibition, exclusive memorabilia and interactive discovery zones that trace the story of the group from their beginnings in Liverpool to their early career in Hamburg, their rise to super-stardom and their subsequent solo careers. Exhibits include John Lennon’s iconic white piano and spectacles, George Harrison’s first guitar, a re-creation of the original Cavern Club, and, of course, a Yellow Submarine.

You will need to walk approximately 300 yards, with about 20 steps down from street level to The Beatles Story and two steps inside. A lift is available. Expect to spend about one hour standing while visiting this attraction.

The Cathedrals of Liverpool

On this excursion you see Liverpool’s two mighty symbols of the Christian faith, which face each other and dominate the city’s skyline. Both are dedicated to Christ: the Anglican to Christ and the Blessed Virgin and the Catholic to Christ the King. You first view the Metropolitan Cathedral, the seat of the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Liverpool. One of the city’s many listed buildings, it was designed by Frederick Gibberd and is affectionately nicknamed ‘Paddy’s Wigwam’ or the ‘Mersey Funnel’. Completed in 1967, it is constructed from reinforced concrete and is 195 feet in diameter. After stopping to visit this remarkable modern building, you travel along the appropriately-named Hope Street to the Anglican Cathedral, headquarters of the Church of England diocese and seat of the Bishop of Liverpool. Its architect was Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, ironically a Roman Catholic and aged only 22 when he won the competition to design it. Work started on this vast church long before its Catholic counterpart was commissioned, but it was not completed until 1978, after some 75 years of work. Built on an overwhelming scale, this red sandstone Gothic Revival structure is Britain’s largest Anglican cathedral and is the seventh-largest church building in the world. It abounds in superlatives – it has the country’s highest Gothic arches, largest organ and the heaviest ring of bells – but the grandeur is balanced by a great sense of welcome and peace. In addition to religious worship, the cathedral is also used for concerts, seminars and exhibitions.

The visit to the Anglican Cathedral involves walking up two short flights of about six steps, with handrails. Access to the Catholic Cathedral is on the level. You should expect to walk a few hundred yards, although much of this is at your discretion.

Douglas

âš“ Arrive 0700. Depart 2200.

With the world famous motorsport Tourist Trophy road-races taking place this week, you might like to take a place on the roadside to see competitors doing laps at speeds approaching 120 mph! This self-governing crown dependency has a rugged coastline and spectacular scenery so it will be an exhilarating experience. Take the opportunity to explore the capital with its sweeping Victorian promenade; perhaps take a boat trip around the island’s beautiful shores, or take a ride on a heritage railway.
Situated on the east of the Isle of Man near the confluence of two rivers, the Dhoo and the Glass, Douglas is the capital of the island and its population accounts for over a third of the total number of residents. It is also the island’s main commercial, shipping and tourist centre and home to a horse-drawn tramway, which has been in operation since 1876. The town provides the starting and finishing point for the world-famous annual TT motorcycle race. You may gain an insight into traditional Manx life by visiting Tynwald Hill, where the Manx Parliament has proclaimed the island’s laws for centuries. Alternatively, if the weather is fine you might like to consider a ride on one of the island’s Victorian railways: maybe take the steam train that runs between Douglas and Port Erin, or go for a spectacular electric train ride to the summit of Snaefell, where, weather permitting, you should be able to enjoy stunning views.

FactFile

Population

26,250 (approximate)

Language

English

Currency

British Pounds Sterling

Time Difference

N/A

Climate

Temperate maritime climate

Ship berths at

At anchor

Distance from Centre

Tenders take passengers to the Floating Pontoon which is situated near the Victoria Pier, about 500 yards from the town centre. From the pontoon, there is a ramp up to the Arrivals Building and the tour coaches.

Distance from gangway to coach

Less than 100 yards

Useful Information

Shopping

The main shopping area is located on and around Strand Street.

Shopping Opening Hours

The majority of shops are open from Monday to Saturday between 0900-1730, and from 1000-1600 on Sundays.

Post Office

The Post Office is in Strand Street, about 800 yards from the pier. The Isle of Man issues its own stamps and normal UK stamps cannot be used.

Tourist Office

The Isle of Man Welcome Centre is in the Sea Terminal Complex and open from Monday to Saturday between 0800-1800, and from 0800-1600 on Sundays.

How to Phone Home

For the UK dial the full STD code followed by the subscriber’s number.

Emergency Services

Dial 999 for all emergencies.

Banks

Barclays and the Royal Bank of Scotland are located on Victoria Street. Both banks have 24-hour ATMs. Manx coins and notes are not generally accepted in mainland Britain. There are two ATMs at the Sea Terminal, which give out Bank of England notes.

Shore excursions you may be able to enjoy:

Cregneash and Vintage Steam Train

Depart the ship and travel via the scenic Plains of Heaven and the Southern Hills, from where the magnificent panorama of the southern coast can be viewed on the descent to the village of Port St Mary and the Heritage Hamlet of Cregneash – a collection of stone-built cottages with thatched roofs dating from the 19th century – typical crofters’ dwellings. This was the main setting for the now-infamous film ‘Waking Ned’. Following your visit to Cregneash, travel to the Calf Sound, the most southerly point of the island, for a brief photo and comfort stop, before continuing along the southern seaboard to Castletown, the former capital of Mann. Your coach passes near the magnificent Castle Rushen from which the town takes its name. Stop at the railway station to board a vintage narrow-gauge steam train for a delightful and traditional journey back to Douglas, along a line dating from 1874. On arrival at the impressive Victorian terminus in Douglas, you rejoin your coach and transfer back to your ship in time for lunch on board.

This excursion involves a total walking distance of approximately 200 yards, with five steps at Castletown Station and some cobbled surfaces at Cregneash. The railway offers an authentic vintage transport experience: the carriages are old-fashioned and are accessed by two or three steps. Station platforms are low and may be uneven, and there could be a wide gap between the platform edge and the carriage door. The train is not exclusive to Saga.

Lady Isabella and Tynwald

Leave the port and travel via the scenic ‘Plains of Heaven’ to Tynwald Hill. Located in the little village of St John’s, this grass topped, conical hill is made from soil and stones from each of the Island’s 17 parishes, and is the point from where, on July 5th each year, all the laws enacted in the previous twelve months are proclaimed to the gathered government officials and to the public at large, both in Manx (Gaelic) and English languages. This ritual has been taking place for well over a thousand years, and entitles the island to claim that it is the oldest continuously self-governing nation in the world! Continue afterwards across the island to Laxey, a former mining village and home to the ‘Lady Isabella’ waterwheel. This wheel – the world’s largest – is 72 feet in diameter and was built in 1854 to pump water from the then thriving lead mines. Take time to visit this Manx Heritage site before returning to Douglas and your waiting ship via the eastern coastline.

This excursion involves a total walking distance of approximately 200 yards, with 40 steps at Laxey. There are a further 50 optional steps at Tynwald Hill.

Milntown House and Gardens

Milntown Estate near Ramsey dates back to the early 16th century, when it was created by Deemster John McCrystyn from two smaller landholdings. It passed down through his family for generations until the death of his last descendant, William Bell Christian, when the property was converted to a private school. Later used as a hotel, it became a family home once again in 1947. Charles Peel Yates and Sir Clive Edwards, the successive owners, spent a great deal of time and money improving the estate, which was bequeathed by Sir Clive to the Milntown Trust in 1999. After your coach transfer from Douglas, enjoy a guided tour of the house, which includes features dating back to the 1830s and earlier. See fine collections of paintings, furniture, ceramics and silver that Sir Clive and Lady Edwards brought from their previous home. The Library contains literature associated with the Christian family, as well as books and magazines that reflect Sir Clive’s passion for motor racing. After touring the house, you have free time to explore some of the 15 acres of gardens and woodlands that surround it. There are fine specimens of rhododendrons, magnolias, camellias and other species, which guarantee a dazzling display of blooms in spring and summer. The old watermill that gives the house its name can also be seen in the grounds. After exploring this beautiful estate, travel back to Douglas via the coastal road and Laxey, the village that is home to the Lady Isabella waterwheel.

You should expect to walk about 200 yards, with occasional steps in the house and gardens. You may walk further you if wish to explore the grounds more thoroughly during your free time. Unfortunately the house is not wheelchair-accessible. The coach journeys between the port and Milntown take about one hour each way.

Snaefell Mountain Railway

Departing from the pier, you begin your tour with a visit to Laxey, a former mining village and home to the Lady Isabella waterwheel. This wheel – the world’s largest, was built in 1854 to pump water from the thriving lead mines. Enjoy a short pause for photographs before continuing to Laxey Station and the Snaefell Mountain Railway, a unique Victorian enterprise which winds its way up over 2,000 feet to the top of Snaefell, the only mountain on the Island. This electrified railway is five miles long, and is built to a gauge of 3′ 6â€. It is one of the rare lines to use the Fell system, with a centre rail for braking on the steep gradients. The railway was built in 1895 and most of its wooden-bodied railcars date from the time of opening. During your ascent, you enjoy breathtaking views of the Manx countryside. At the summit there are impressive panoramic views over the island and across the Irish Sea. In fact, there is a local saying that, on a clear day, one can see seven kingdoms: Mann, Scotland, Ireland, Wales, England, the Kingdom of Heaven and the Kingdom of the Sea. After free time at the summit, you take the train back to Laxey, where you rejoin your coach for the return journey to the pier.

This excursion requires a walk of about 250 yards. The railcars are accessed by three fairly steep steps, and there are two or three steps to negotiate if you wish to enter the Visitors’ Centre at the Summit. We recommend that you bring a waterproof coat or jacket as the weather can be very changeable.

Spend the day at sea.

Portland

Arrive 0800. Depart 1700.

Sail into Portland Harbour, the third largest man-made harbour in the world and host venue for 2012 Olympics’ sailing events. Portland lies on the the Jurassic Coast, and the island is connected to the mainland by Chesil Beach spit. Maybe join a tour to beautiful Abbotsbury Gardens, see the Benedictine ruins and visit the 600-year-old swannery – at this time of year you can walk through a colony of nesting mute swans on their nests just as the cygnets are hatching.

Portland is strictly known as ‘The Isle of Portland’ and is connected to mainland Dorset by Chesil Beach. Part of England’s UNESCO-listed Jurassic coast, the isle is made of limestone, which has become famous for its use in the construction of fine buildings across Britain, including St Paul’s Cathedral. There are actually eight distinct settlements on the island, of which the largest are Fortuneswell and Easton. Portland Harbour is one of the largest manmade harbours in the world, and was created by the construction of stone breakwaters in the 19th century. It was an important Royal Navy base during both World Wars. More recently, it has become the home of the National Sailing Academy, and was the official venue for the Olympic sailing events in 2012. Only five miles from the popular seaside resort of Weymouth, Portland is a perfect base for exploring this town, as well as acting as a convenient starting-point for a range of tours covering this picturesque region.

FactFile

Population

Sign up to get exclusive deals and the latest news direct to your inbox!

    Read what our customers have to say about us...

    Speak to our Travel Expert
    0161 755 3081
    holidays@aspentravel.co.uk