catherine.c

Anyone been on the Ghan?

    Recommended Posts

    Just thinking about travelling from Adelaide to Darwin on the Ghan, stopping at wherever I can - coober pedy, alice springs - extra journey to ularu etc. Staying in Dawin for a week maybe, then flying home. I just wonder if the train journey will be a bit boring - has anyone done it? What did you think? Any advice on good stops?

    Thanks

    Catherine

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites

    Can't really comment about places to stop but I think you may find the journey a bit boring. I've done the IP to Perth and back 4 or 5 times (working on it) and the novelty soon wore off. What you can see depends on the time the train pulls out of Keswick. On the Perth trip you have two nights on it and during the day there is mainly flat, monotonous desert (looks like the surface of Mars a bit). There are a couple of picturesque parts and I would imagine it's a bit more interesting on the Ghan. If you go I would advise getting a Gold Kangaroo Class sleeper. The Red Kangaroo ones are very, very cramped, and I wouldn't advise going in the sit ups at all. Gold service has really good meals in a restaurant car which are included (I used to eat VERY well when I worked on the IP). The Red service is served by a sort of cafe carriage, and you pay for everything when you order it there as it's not included in the price. The trains can be quite noisy when you are trying to sleep but I found using an MP3 player or an Ipod turned down low drowned out the noise, and no matter which class you travel in the bunks are never going to be like a bed at home!

     

    Sharon

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites

    As far as I am aware the Ghan only stops at Port Augusta, Alice Springs, Katherine and Darwin so I don't think Coober Pedy would be an option. It's a few hours drive from Port Augusta. Great place to visit though for an overnight stay.

     

    I've done the journey from Adelaide up past Tennant Creek in the Northern Territory (then on to Queensland), across to Uluru and also back from Alice to Adelaide in a coach. Personally I don't find the landscape boring at all as it is constantly changing in subtle ways. (Adelaide to Melbourne or the Riverland on the other hand, I find really boring!!) However I'm sure some people would find it very tedious.

     

    I would totally recommend visiting Alice Springs and the surrounding areas - they are really lovely, places like Glen Helen and Ross River. Uluru is definately worth a visit too, although it is a bit touristy.

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites

    could you give me info on the coach company you used for the trip from Adelaide to Alice Springs.

     

    Thanks

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    Guest Drumms

    We did the train from Perth to Adelaide on the sit up chairs, OMG, it was tough going, we were right next to the smoking carriage and it stunk. This was 10 years ago, not sure if you can smoke on the trains anymore. We enjoyed part of it, but we said if we were to ever do it again we would get a sleeper. Sounds like a fab trip that your wanting to do.

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    Guest pompep

    I did the route earlier this year. It's fun if you like to sit back and stare out the window with a good book - but dreadful if you feel claustrophic and enjoy fresh air. Be warned the only thing gold about Gold Class is the yellowed formica walls of the carriage.. watching people struggle with the bunkbeds (especially retirees) was not fun. The food was lovely, but the portions tiny. Platinum Class is the only way to do it in comfort - but at that price, you could fly first class somewhere...

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    Guest Carla

    I did the Ghan trip from Sydney, through Adelaide and up to Uluru back in 2002, as a backpacker. I opted for the Daynighter seat, which you sat in the whole time, and reclined it at night to get some shuteye. Unfortunately I was the unlucky person that had bedbugs in my chair and when I awoke in the morning (after a very restless night) I was bitten from head to toe all down my back. Luckily when I complained to the head honcho, he upgraded my friend and I into a cabin with beds - from where we could enjoy the vast dusty landscape and watched the roos hop across the plains at dusk. Even with the bedbugs incident - I loved the trip! :)

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    ...Unfortunately I was the unlucky person that had bedbugs in my chair and when I awoke in the morning (after a very restless night) I was bitten from head to toe all down my back. ....

     

     

    Ewwwwwwww, how terrible! You've got me itching now!!!

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites

    We did it back in 2004 ,from Adelaide to Alice springs .Was the first day they opened the link to Darwin .Got interviewed by Keith Conlon as well .Was a great trip.

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites
    Guest cbeeb

    did adelaide to melbourne 10 hours is less than 8 driving. I loveed it my OH and kids hated it. i got to read for 6 hours straight do it alone so much better:)

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites

    Thought about driving?? we drove up the centre stopping at coober pedy,urldunda then accross to uluru,olgas,kings canyon etc back to urldunda up to Katherine and darwin stopping everywhere inbetween,depends how much time you have..camper van? or hire car...pick up Adelaide~drop off in Darwin stay in motels along the way?

    Fantastic scenery so changable just make sure you don't arrive in the wrong places at the wrong time~rainy season!

    Share this post


    Link to post
    Share on other sites

    Create an account or sign in to comment

    You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

    Create an account

    Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

    Register a new account

    Sign in

    Already have an account? Sign in here.

    Sign In Now