Isle of Man

Isle of Man pictures. The Isle of Man (Ellan Vannin in the native Celtic language) has a special status: it's not part of any country (and yet it has the oldest continuous parliament in the world, which is over 1000 years old). It is a crown dependency of the United Kingdom, which means that the head of state is the Queen of England and the UK is responsible for defending it, but it is not part of the country and is allowed to have different laws (and it does have very different tax laws, indeed). Though it was originally inhabited by a Celtic people (the Manx), the fact that many of its towns became popular seaside resorts during the Victorian era changed much on the island and now you could easily mistake it for England, except perhaps for the subtle differences, for example the ubiquitous Manx symbol (three legs joined at the thigh), the slightly more dramatic coastlines, or the lack of speed limit on many of the roads.
This gallery contains pictures from the capital, Douglas, a few seaside towns like Castletown, Port Erin and Laxey, the countryside and Snaefell, the highest mountain on the island.

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The Isle of Man coast looking south from a hill just outside Peel

Dawn over the farms outside Peel

Watching the sun rise


The flowers on the hillside outside Knockaloe Beg Farm

Coastal footpath

Dawn over Knockaloe Beg farm

Dawn outside Peel

A 7am hike

The western Manx coast just before sunrise

Sheep! On a farm that has around 1000 sheep

Dawn outside Peel

A sheep's skull on a farm

A neuroscientist explaining which bit of the skull was used for what

Sheep's skull

The sleeping tow of Peel at 7am


Douglas Head Lighthouse

The rocks outside Douglas with a small concrete bunker

The Camera Obscura that projects images of the surrounding Douglas Bay (without the use of lens)

A Manx Electric Railway car with benches whose backrests can be manually rotated so the whole car doesn't have to be turned around at the last stop

Spring in Douglas

The Manx Electric Railway's open-air and closed carriages

Terraced housing in Douglas

Angler tending to the catch after pointing out a baby seal swimming near the pier

Fog over the Douglas lighthouse

At low tide you can walk a hundred metres from here before you reach the water

Unrealistically green Manx lawn

1943 litres

The port of Douglas

Beware! Horse trams! Douglas does actually have horse trams along its seaside promenade in summer.

The hunger strike over the prison's smoking ban was one of the biggest news story in the spring of 2008

Hutchinson Square


Anglers by Douglas lighthouse

'Maximum penalty: f^ck you' - fighting the power on the Isle of Man

The Manx find it important to show they're not English; they even paint Britain's standard black litter bins blue to show how much this is so.

Douglas Bay at low tide with the Tower of Refuge, a shelter built for sailors who got shipwrecked on Canister Rock

One of the Manx Electric Railway's tramcars

Park in Douglas

Though they paint their litter bins blue, the post pillar boxes remain red unlike their brothers on similarly Crown-dependent Guernsey

The Steam Railway at Douglas station

Residential Douglas

Victorian terraces built during the period when Douglas became a popular seaside resort with the English

The three-legged Manx symbol is almost ubiquitous on the island

View over Douglas with the Sileau Ruy mountain in the background

The scenic Raad Ny Foillan (The Way of the Gull) coastal path leading out of Douglas

Stone wall along the coastal road near Douglas


Posh hillside villas overlooking Laxey Bay

Low tide

A walk along Laxey beach

This dog had no idea how to get rid of the tennis ball once it had got it in its mouth, so manual intervention was needed

It must be great to sail out in this weather

Open for hot and cold food



View from the pier in Laxey Bay

Terraced houses in Laxey

Manx Electric Railway

The wooden interior of the Manx Electric Railway

Give way to the tram

In the valley of the Laxey River

View along the Irish Sea coast from the Manx Electric Railway's open air tramcar

The Irish Sea from a MER car

The termini of the Manx Electric Railway and the Snaefell Mountain Railway (old-fashioned tramcars run on both routes)

Path running along Laxey River

The TT (Tourist Trophy) race is the main sports event of the island, which has no speed limit on many of its roads

Snaefell Wheel, a 15m diameter water wheel previously used for pumping water to help mining operations


The port of Castletown, the former capital of the island

In the port of Castletown

Now agriculture constitutes only 1% of the island's economy

Public footpath sign in Poyll Vaaish, with the Manx triskelion (meaning 'three-legged'), present on both the country's flag and coat-of-arms

Manx businessman

On the train

Marine Drive

View from Marine Drive, a several mile long clifftop road just outside Douglas

A cobweb on one of the stones above the sheer drop to sea level

The gateway to the Marine Drive


Housing on top of the Douglas Head headland

That's a big drop

Admittedly not the best place to learn to drive

Port Erin

Old cowboy

View over Port Erin Bay from the promenade

Port Erin Bay


The path leading down from the summit of Snaefell, the highest mountain on the Isle of Man

Ghost tram

Surprise sheep

The 'stone' marking the summit of Snaefell. The view was spectacular.

The Snaefell Mountain Railway passing through a cloud

The mountainside of Snaefell

Ascending Snaefell

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