The Fairy bridge.
Just outside Douglas on the road to Port Erin at Santon, you may pass over the 'Fairy bridge'. It is rumoured that each time you pass over, if you don't say 'good morning' to the fairies you will have bad luck ! Don't tempt fate; say good morning and stay healthy !
Isle of Man TT
I suppose one can't miss out the subject of the Isle of Man TT motor bike races. The races effectively close all the main roads in the island.
If you are a biking buff, great. But otherwise you may find the road closures a nuisance when trying to get around the island by road.
If you are in the Isle of Man when the 'TT' is on and need to get around, you are probably better off to use public transport in the form of the Steam Railway on the Electric Tramway Railway systems. If you are into bikes, bring your camera and maybe binoculars too.
The Isle of Man
Although this page is under Douglas, in reality it's for the whole island.
Most people in the UK know next to nothing about the Isle of Man, unless they’ve had some connection - a holiday, or business perhaps. That was my case, anyway. Anyone outside the UK probably knows even less, and is less likely to have a connection.
It’s right there, in a box between England, Wales, Ireland and Scotland. But it‘s tiny - the population is just 70k. And access is not that wonderful at least from Scotland. For me it was a 3.5 hour drive and then a 40 minute flight. That was because there are no flights to/from Scotland on a Saturday, at least in winter. Any other day of the week is fine, tho'! The ferry is 3 hours plus, from Lancashire.
It is not part of the UK. It is not part of Great Britain. It is outside the EU.
It has it’s own parliament - the Tynwald. It is a British Dependency. The Manx language is a form of Gaelic.
Population is about 70,000. It had annual economic growth of 1% as at February ’11, in the middle of a UK recession. Unemployment was 200 at that time, against job vacancies of 150. I think that’s called “full employment”, but it seems a rather alien concept. And you’ll hear plenty of foreign accents from the central and eastern Europeans working in service industry jobs.
The island is best known as an offshore tax haven, so banking, insurance and financial services are a huge part of the economic landscape. The other big claim to fame is the annual motorcycle event - the TT races. Motorcycle racing on the normal roads. Sounds pretty wild - I’d love to go back to see that!
I had a lovely 30 hours there in February 11. It was wet and windy most of the time, but I saw enough to make me want to come back in the summer. It is a popular tourist destination in season.
"Doolish - Manx Capital"
Douglas, Doolish in Manx, lis located on the eastern coast has been the capital of the Isle of Man since 1863, taking over from the old capital of Castletown in the south west of the island.
It is by far the largest town on the island with a population of roughly 26,000. While Douglas is the capital, the centre of Manx finance and the port of entry for boats from Ireland and the UK, it is still in many ways a bit of a sleepy seaside town. But this is still where you will find the best shopping, the historic Gaiety Theatre and the most accessible nightlife as well as the national museum and art gallery.
Tips on Douglas can be found on my Isle of Man pages.
To many this image epitimises the Isle of Man
"Water wheel at Laxey, near Douglas."
Climbing to the top of the water wheel was a real task for me as I'm scared of heights - but I did it !
Laxey is just a few miles from Douglas north in the direction of Ramsey.
Laxey is also the starting point for the mountain railway to the top of Snaefell.
Picture 'borrowed' from an IOM tourism site.
Local Douglas (Isle of Man) time: Same as UK.
Currency: British and Manx pound.
Language: English (and Manx: historical only )
Nearest large town(s)/city: IS Douglas.
If you are travelling from the UK, you don't need a passport to visit the Isle of Man but it is a form of identity for hiring a car etc.
No financial gain is received by any travel tip writer. We do this purely for enjoyment and to help fellow travellers.
If you find my tips useful, ratings would be appreciated. Thanks.
What's the current weather like in Douglas? (Link)
If I can quote from the little vinyl record that came with my holiday brochure for the Isle of Man at the time that I went there.
'When standing on the top of Snaefell (the mountain) you can see five kingdoms. England, Ireland, Wales, Scotland and above - the Kingdom of Heaven'.
"Falcon Cliff Hotel?"
When I stayed in Douglas, this was the Falcon Cliff Hotel which used to put on some good entertainment in the evenings for a modest fee on the door.
However, I am told that it is not a Hotel anymore. Sad loss.
"All flags flying."
Flags of the Isle of Man on Douglas promenade. The 3 legged design on the flag history says that, "No matter how I land, I will stand". Or something like that. The tracks in the foreground are for the horse drawn tram that runs along the seafront.
Fancy a look at my other Isle of Man pages
such as Port_Erin (Link)
Or how about Peel (Link)
or Back to my Homepage (Link)