Touring the Isle of Man - Alfa Romeo Forum
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garwood1
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Touring the Isle of Man

Hey folks, I am planning on taking the Spider on a tour of the Isle of Man in March. Having never visited there, I am seeking recommendations for accomodations, don't-miss-it sights and locations, best meals out, preferred location to use as a base, etc - also, would be interested to know if there are any alfisti on the Isle, in case things go pear-shaped, mechanically...! (after all, Murphy was an optimist...) I'd also be interesting in hearing your views on which spares would be essentlal to have on board.
All suggestions welcomed...and thanks in advance.
 
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Re: Touring the Isle of Man

Whilst not an expert on the IOM I have been there before..Excellent drivers roads over there.

With regards to spares i'd do the usual, full service, check tyres brakes. Take some oil too, sure youll be booting the Alfa and we all know they like a drink!

Enjoy!!! - PS Im taking my 145 to Spain later this year... CANT WAIT!
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alfa_147_jtd_16v
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Re: Touring the Isle of Man

The Isle of Man is a superb place! I have been there once and my Mum and Dad go there frequently. I am taking the caravan over there this year too which will be a first, although I need to apply for my permit first.
It's incredibly diverse with its countrside....think of it as a miniture UK...you have superb coastlines, glens, rivers, lakes, hills, lowlands, coves, beaches....need I go on! Its also very quiet too.

I will say this though, its paradise for walking, mountain biking and other outdoor persuits, but its not the kind of place you can appreciate from a car all the time....you have to use your body to fully experience the islands assets.
When you go on the ferry or seacat, makes sure you ask for a FREE parking permit onboard then you can park in the town centres without having to go to a tourist info centre or supermarket to get one when you arrive.
The Laxey wheel is a good attraction, although it might not be open in March. The same goes for the Victorian Snaefell railway. The Trams (also Victorian that go from Douglas to Ramsey) will be working, so get yourself on those....they are a work of art considering they are still all ORIGINAL!! and they are funny as they are so noisy.
The steam trains may be running I think from Douglas to Port Erin. Ballaglass falls is also a spectacular set of waterfalls worth visiting.

There are lovely towns and villages to look around too, but beware that the only real mainland style entertainment is based in Douglas.
As I say walking is great, so don on your walking boots and do some of the superb coastal walks!
The island is deceptively big.....you really feel as though you are on a much much bigger island.
The truely unique thing I found about it was that nowhere in the world (I think) can you see 4 countries from an island....Scotland, England, Wales and Ireland.

There is an Alfa dealer on the island too and lots of car specialists, so don't worry too much about taking your garage with you .
Douglas is a nice town with Marks and Spencer's etc to please the misus so its a good place to stay at if you want nightlife. If you want to be with people but still not too busy, then Ramsey is good, or Peel.
Glen Maye is a lovely place if you want piece and quiet.

Anyway I hope this has given you some useful info!
 
garwood1
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Re: Touring the Isle of Man

Thanks for the responses. I appreciate the info, and am looking forward to this trip. I am leaning towards the Peel side of the island as a base for trips out at this time. I'll report back afters with any lessons learned, etc in case anyone else has a similar interest. Should be a great adventure.
 
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Re: Touring the Isle of Man

Yep, you should enjoy it...be aware though, that although there is no speed limit out of the towns, the roads are incredibly backwards (in fact the whole of the island is!....i.e they don't have chevrons and the roads are not wide, smooth and 'as safe' as the mainland so just cruise the island....don't go mad! I personally like it backwards over there as it reminds me of yesteryear on the mainland (even though I am only 28!).
I will be taking the 'van over there in May which should be nice, soon after I'll be island hopping, again with the 'van in Scotland....Arran, Kintyre & Islay.

I just can't wait to get going on both trips

Please do report back though!
 
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Re: Touring the Isle of Man

Good hotels in Douglas are Sefton, this one has atrium rooms if you can get one, where your back balcony opens onto an indoor atrium with trees and water features put together by the guys that did the eden project. Also Clairmont hotel good. Both of these are on the sea front in Douglas.
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garwood1
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Re: Touring the Isle of Man

Thanks for all the input. Have tune-up parts to fit this weekend, along with new soft top front seal (to stop my wife's lap from getting soggy in the rain!) - have booked ferry, and B&B, so ready to rock - will report back after we return.
 
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Re: Touring the Isle of Man

- I have just booked my crossing with the 'van - it cost £391 which I didn't think was too bad, but becuase of the sheer size of my outfit I have to cross from Heysham this time. Have an amazing time and I hope the weather is good for you.
 
garwood1
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Re: Touring the Isle of Man

Trip was a bit of a bust. Weather was awful (the week of March 9, with the heavy rains and wind). I bottled it in the end, and took the Mazda 6 instead of the Alfa - couldn't bear the thought of my car filling with water each night as it poured down rain!
The island is interesting, lots of amazing, varied scenery. We stayed at the Glen Helen Inn, near Peel - very nice place, good food too. Sits right in front of one of the 8 glens on the island.
Have to say, it was a little...dare I say it....boring ? Not much to do in most of the towns, everything seemed to be shut when we rolled into town - probably off-season, I'd guess. Folks were nice enough, but can't really say I experienced a 'warm Manx welcome'. Lots of interesting places to walk, with stunning views in most directions. It was interesting, but I doubt I'd go back anytime soon...ferry crossings were easy enough, went out via Liverpool, and back via Heysham.
Top tip - Pick up a free parking disc either on board ferry or at Tourist Info office near port in Douglas...this allows you to park all over island - otherwise, you'll be frustrated trying to find a suitable spot.
 
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