For an introduction to the natural history of the island there’s the Isle of Man Museum with many interesting exhibits. Out of Douglas, north east on the A1, is Peel where the House of Manannan Heritage Centre tells the story of the inhabitants of the Isle of Man throughout history. Out on St Patrick’s Isle you’ll find Peel Castle where monks and villagers used to hide from pillaging Vikings.
Take the A25 south west to Castletown where you’ll find Rushen Castle, a sympathetically renovated castle with a great exhibition of artefacts from the time of its construction. Weddings are often held in its grounds because of the photogenic setting.
At the end of the A7 west of Castletown is Port Erin, famed for its views where, especially on a clear day, you can see the Mountains of Mourne on the Irish coast. Port Erin also hosts an international viola competition – the instrument, not the flower! Port Erin’s railway station is accompanied by a railway museum which tells the story of the island’s railway.