Australia by Train

Getting around Australia by train...

Australia's cities and towns are connected by both interstate and intra-state rail services. To travel longer distances across the country there are cross country services. The service provided by the rail network is less extensive than that on the bus network, however, the eastern coast of the country is well served. Not all of the country is served by the rail network - for example remote regions of Western Australia and the Northern Territory have no lines at all, extreme heat in these regions can cause train tracks to buckle.

There are many train operators each with their own fares, booking and ticketing systems and websites. Rail passes are available which will cut the cost of travel in many areas. Some of the major rail operators are listed below:

  • Transport NSW provides train services in New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria and the Australian National Territory.
  • VLine run regional rail services in Victoria, connecting Melbourne with the rest of the state.
  • TransWA runs train services in western Australia
  • Queensland Rail provides the rail network across Queensland
  • Sydney Trains run the train network in the Sydney area
  • Adelaide Metro offers a train service in the Adelaide area
  • TransPerth provides trains in the Perth area
  • TransLink operate in South East Queensland, including Brisbane, Ipswich, Sunshine Coast, Gold Coast, Cairns, and Mackay and Toowoomba.
Long distance trains across the country are operated by Great Southern Rail.

Their lines include many of the classic Australian train journeys:

  • The Ghan, a three-day north to south journey between Adelaide, Alice Springs and Darwin
  • The Indian Pacific which takes four days to connect the two oceans at Sydney and Perth
  • The Overland which connects Adelaide and Melbourne