Sydney – Adelaide – Perth
3 days rail
Sit back and watch Australia’s timeless landscapes fly by your window on this epic train trip. Board at Sydney and hop off for whistlestop tours of Broken Hill, Adelaide and gold-rich Kalgoorlie. Or join in Perth and cut the continent the other way, from the Indian Ocean to the Pacific. Pass through the spectacular Blue Mountains, stop in the remote outpost of Cook and travel almost 500 kilometres through the stark Nullarbor Plain. Whatever your direction, you’ll wake to the smell of freshly brewed coffee, watch fiery sunsets and fall asleep to the train’s rhythmic sway.
Depart Sydney mid-afternoon
Board at Sydney’s Central Station and settle into your cabin or lounge chair for a comfortable afternoon staring out your window. Watch the sandstone cliffs, forested valleys, escarpments and waterfalls of the Blue Mountains morph into the more arid landscapes of the New South Wales outback. See a fiery sun sink into rugged ranges, mulga bush and desert plain as you enjoy dinner and wine in the dining car.
Arrive Broken Hill early morning
Pull into Broken Hill early on your second day and marvel at the clear light and beautiful colours that have drawn many artists to this area. This former mining town known as Silver City sits amidst distinctive desert landscapes and an oasis of lakes. Soak up the city on a one-hour whistle-stop tour. Learn about the rich mining history and visit the Royal Flying Doctor Base. See the Living Desert Sculptures and one of the impressive art galleries. Don’t worry if it feels like the earth is moving beneath you. After spending a day onboard, you’re probably transferring the train’s rhythmic sway to land.
Arrive Adelaide mid-afternoon
The first things you’ll notice as you pull into Australia’s festival city are the colonial buildings surrounded by superb parklands, beaches and hills. Check out the stone buildings lining North Terrace and the Rundle Street cafe scene. You’ll also whiz past Montefiore Hill, Colonel Light's Lookout, Adelaide Oval Cricket Ground and Lake Torrens.
Arrive Cook evening
You can wander one of the world's most isolated outposts when the train pulls in briefly to Cook. Once a thriving railway settlement, Cook now only has a handful of residents and sits in the middle of the vast treeless Nullarbor, around 1,500 kilometres from Perth.
Arrive Kalgoorlie evening
Get off in Australia's gold capital just in time for a night tour. See the floodlit superpit goldmine, more than 400 metres deep and over 3.3 kilometres long, with mammoth machinery that looks like Tonka trucks in the distance. Hear stories of bandits and brothels, fortune and hardships as you wander past the grand old pubs of Hannan Street. It was named after Irishman Paddy Hannan who first discovered the region’s riches in 1893.
Arrive Perth evening
You arrive in Perth after 68 hours hurtling across the Australian continent from Sydney. This sunny, beach-loving city is closer to Singapore than Sydney and an important gateway to Asia. Make the most of your first morning here with an Indian-Pacific tour along the Swan River and past the carefully restored colonial buildings. Once you’ve got a glimpse into Perth’s attractions, you and your luggage will be dropped to your city accommodation.