Step back in history as you board a majestic steam train and journey deep into the Tasmanian wilderness. Hear tales of resilience and triumph over rugged terrain, hardship and adversity. West Coast Wilderness Railway is more than a railway journey within a wilderness setting, it’s a heritage experience that will touch your soul.
QUEENSTOWN EXPLORER – Strahan – Queenstown – Strahan
On this full day steam train journey, you will travel the length of the West Coast Wilderness Railway, stopping at every station along the line and hearing the many stories of the resilient people and extraordinary events that brought the railway to life.
As you travel through impenetrable rainforest, climb rugged mountains and pass deep gorges, you will understand the huge challenges that were overcome to build the line that would eventually connect the region’s rich copper mines to the port at Strahan. The railway also connected people and communities, and throughout the day, you will pass through the camps, settlements, towns and farms that once thrived here.
You will stop at Lower Landing on the edge of the King River, and Dubbil Barril where there is a short walking trail through the rainforest to see Huon pine and other native forest species. And you will ascend the steepest section of track under the power of the Abt rack and pinion system to reach Rinadeena, where annual rainfall can be up to three metres! This is the only operating Abt rack and pinon railway in the Southern Hemisphere
Your tour includes a 90-minute lunch stop in Queenstown, where you will have time to explore this historic mining town and take an optional guided walking tour.
RACK AND GORGE – Queenstown – Dubbil Barril – Queenstown
Join the 4 hour Rack and Gorge tour and take a steam train journey through remote rainforest to the incredible King River Gorge.
As you travel through the west coast’s cool temperate rainforest, you will ascend steep wilderness mountains under the power of the revolutionary Abt rack and pinion system – technology that transformed the fortunes of the west coast during the late nineteenth century, and the only operating Abt rack and pinion railway in the Southern Hemisphere. Stop at historic stations, traverse the deep chasm of the King River Gorge, and see the places where early west coast pioneers lived and worked to create this extraordinary railway.
During your experience, your guide will share stories of the determined and visionary people who carved out their fortunes in one of the most difficult and remote landscapes imaginable. You will hear tales of scandals, extravagant railways, and two feuding Irishmen, whose rivalry and determination led to the creation of the richest copper mining company in the world.
A highlight of the tour is seeing the loco being turned on the manual turntable at Dubbil Barril.
RIVER AND RAINFOREST – Strahan – Dubbil Barril – Strahan
The 4 hour River and Rainforest tour takes you from the shores of Macquarie Harbour into the rainforest and mountains of Tasmania’s rugged west coast.
Soak up the stunning views of Macquarie Harbour as you travel along the foreshore from Regatta Point Station in Strahan. As you enter the rainforest, you’ll follow the course of the King River to Teepookana – once the fourth busiest port in Tasmania, and the place where construction of the railway first began.
The extraordinary engineering achievement of this railway will be evident as you cross historic bridges, including Iron Bridge, and see the remains of the 244-metre trestle bridge at Quarter Mile. You’ll visit some of the stations along the line, and have the chance to walk in the rainforest, and taste wild leatherwood honey, harvested from the wilderness.
During your journey, your guide will tell you the stories of the railway and the resilient people who lived and worked along its length. From the men who laboured to build the line and keep the trains running, to the families and children that made a life in the forest, and the two visionary Irishmen whose fierce rivalry and undaunted ambition brought the railway to life.
Heritage Carriage Experience: Enjoy comfortable seating in a period style carriage with the option to purchase drinks and snacks.
Wilderness Carriage Experience: Enjoy a glass of champagne on arrival, morning or afternoon tea or lunch (dependent on the tour) and exclusive access to the Wilderness Balcony.
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