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Tren del Ciment

La Pobla de Lillet, Spain
About Tren del Ciment
This is a line that historically linked the former cement factory Asland de Castellar de n'Hug with Guardiola de Berguedà, from where the line of the narrow-gauge railroad towards Berga and Manresa started. The trajectory of the old Cement Train, which takes about 20 minutes, is carried out by a diesel locomotive with four cars that have a capacity for 25 passengers each. It has a route of 3.5 kilometers and for 4 seasons
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Tren del Ciment
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uptoeleven wrote a review Nov 2019
London14 contributions11 helpful votes
This is my second visit to Tren del Ciment - my first visit it was closed (despite the website telling me it was open and it reasonably warm with no snow). So make double sure you aren't on a wasted journey here. This second visit, where we actually were allowed on the Tren del Ciment - was lovely despite the train having the least inviting name one could possibly imagine. Yes, it used to run up to the cement factory - hence the name - but ... well wiser heads than mine run the marketing at at FGC so what do I know? The train itself has four coaches, each open to the elements (it looks like they have transparent plastic curtains in case of rain) - it runs the full length of the 600mm gauge narrow-gauge line up from just below to Pobla de Lillet up to the old factory at Castellar de n'Hug. It winds it's way up through the main street of La Pobla de Lillet, blocking traffic as it goes, before leaving the road and climbing up to the old factory. Scenery is lovely, the railway itself is charming. At the bottom station there's a very small but well presented exhibition of the trains the used to run in Catalunya and trains that were used in mining. Apparently the Catalan Pyrenees were once riddled with these narrow-gauge lines, with little trains pulling wagons of aggregate and rock and minerals and coal down from the mountain mines. Sadly the railway lines are long gone - indeed this isn't the easiest place to visit on public transport. The exhibition goes on to show how small narrow gauge trains were used inside the mines, for inspection, to carry material away from the coal face and blast sites, for all sorts of reasons. It's fascinating to see these tiny but powerful meticulously preserved engines which once carried the coal that powered Catalunya. Our visit was on the second weekend of November. Already the tops of the mountains were snowbound and the trains stop running in the penultimate week in Novembers. Still there were plenty of people up at the Museum and Jardins d'Artigas. Clearly it's quite a popular destination - just 12km south of the French border (and 35 from Andorra) - and in summer I can imagine the crush to get on the train might be overwhelming. In late autumn, on a clear November morning, it as idyllic. I'm not sure if tickets can be bought in advance - I did try but their website seemed unable to cope with the concept. It might be a case of having to drop in and see if it's running, which could lead to disappointment if it's closed...
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Date of experience: November 2019
grahamt34 wrote a review Apr 2014
London, United Kingdom179 contributions77 helpful votes
The line was once used to carry coal and cement to the factory that is now the interesting "Museu del Ciment Asland" (see Castellar de n'Hug). It has been restored as a tourist train with the ride starting 1 Km to the west of the La Pobla de Lillet (good car park). The line goes through the small town and up a scenic narrow valley - a 20 minute trip. There is a stop at some gardens (Jardins Artigas) that many passengers took advantage of but we went directly to the end and spent a couple of hours in the Cement museum before taking the return ride. By the starting station is a shed with a number of static narrow gauge exhibits covering Catalonia. More interesting than just something to see while waiting for the train, an hourly service but beware the mid-afternoon lunch break in the timetable. See http://www.trendelciment.cat for timetables and days of operation.
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Date of experience: April 2014