Carlisle has been a city of significance for centuries - and a force to be reckoned with. A thriving town before the arrival of the Romans, it has since become iconic for the location of Hadrian’s Wall, which represented the far northern edge of the Roman Empire.
After the Roman period, Carlisle constantly swapped hands, first between warring Scottish kingdoms, before the English invaded the region and incorporated Cumberland and Carlisle into England, signalling the beginning of the Anglo-Scottish wars. Even after the union of the crowns, the region was central to any trouble that came about, with Carlisle Castle continuing to act as a fortress all the way up until 1707.
Now cemented as the Great Border City, Carlisle is a place of natural beauty that attracts visitors from all over. So why don’t you hop on a train and dip your toes in a bit of history?
Popular Avanti West Coast trains to Carlisle
Carlisle is a vital connection between the north and south so most of our popular routes go through here.
Fastest Journey Times
Things to do in Carlisle
When you arrive in Carlisle, your first port of call should be to Carlisle Castle. It’s one of the most active castles in British history due to the Anglo-Saxon war, and walking through the passageways and dungeons gives you a real insight into life during this era.
Conveniently, you’ll find the Tullie House Museum and Art Gallery across from the Castle. This is home to a variety of artefacts from the Roman era as well as several other collections that cover the Anglo-Saxon period and Carlisle’s rich social history. From here, carry on down Castle Street to Carlisle Cathedral, where you can admire the stained glass windows and gothic-style architecture from the 13th and 14th centuries.
If you’re only in Carlisle for a day trip, you can still manage to fit in a trip to Hadrian’s Wall, there are plenty of ruins that are easily accessible from the city to give you a sense of adventure. If you’re there for a bit longer, you can set out on a walk of the full stretch of wall to dive deep into a rich part of British history.
For the smaller adventurers in your group, Walby Farm Park is an award-winning family attraction where kids can meet a range of animals including rabbits, sheep and even ponies. There are lots of activities throughout the city for all ages, so it’s not just a destination for those interested in medieval times.
Carlisle is a unique place to visit and you can get there from across the UK with Avanti West Coast, so get your walking boots on and join us for an adventure you won’t forget.
Ways to save
If you want to make the most out of your time in Carlisle, there are plenty of ways to save with Avanti West Coast. Simple tips like travelling off-peak can make a huge difference to the price of a train ticket to Carlisle, but did you know that you can also save money if you’re travelling in a group? Tickets go on a sale up to 12 weeks before the departure date, so booking in advance can also get you great savings on your travel. You can even set up advance alerts to notify you when tickets become available.
If you have a railcard you can save up to a ⅓ on travel, up to 50% for 16-17-year-olds. So, a reasonable one-off payment could pay for itself in just a few trips and if you are a regular traveller you could potentially save hundreds each year. There are loads of options available for all age groups so take a look at our railcards page to see which one suits you best.
Railcards are also digital, meaning if you have the Avanti West Coast App, you can store all you need for your journey on your phone.
The easiest way to save is by booking directly through the Avanti West Coast website or app rather than external travel booking services. By doing this you won’t have to pay booking fees and you can also gain nectar points each time you travel. If you do find the ticket cheaper elsewhere, we’re happy to refund the difference, so there’s nothing to lose.
Other popular destinations
Carlisle Station Information
All you need to know about Blackpool Station, from parking and accessibility to WiFi coverage, can be found here:
Carlisle station information
There’s information from accessibility to parking and ticketing to WiFi coverage. More details on our wider network can be found on this page.