Take your place alongside a long history of Australia’s transcontinental adventurers. Following in the tracks of early ‘cameleers’, explorers and pioneers, prepare to discover Alice Springs, Uluru, Katherine and the opal mines and underground labyrinth of Coober Pedy. But, by journeying on the Ghan Expedition, it’s fair to say that you’ll travel in a good degree more luxury than your forebears, even as you pass through the harsh Red Centre and untamed Outback. Throughout, you’ll disembark to explore remote outposts and frontier towns. Although space is at a premium on The Ghan, cabins cleverly convert from cosy sitting areas to sleeping berths, with seats and side tables replaced by drop-down beds. While Gold Service offers all the home comforts, with en-suite twin and single berth cabins available, the Platinum Service is a step up. Cabins are twice the size, allowing room for either a double or twin beds and, in between enjoying a 24-hour cabin service, you’ll be treated to private transfers either side of your journey. It’s the chance to cross Australia in serious style.
From the moment you step into your Gold or Platinum Service cabin, everything on board is yours. Cabin fares are inclusive of excellent multi-course meals, taken in the Queen Adelaide Restaurant car. Here you’ll dine on dishes a world away from traditional bush tucker, enjoying local delicacies such as scallops, crocodile sausage, smoked duck and grilled barramundi, all washed down with a wide range of top wines – predominantly Australian, of course.
Over your time on board, you’ll spend your days watching the ever-changing landscapes, from the pastoral hues of the South Australian plains to the rusty reds of the MacDonnell Ranges and rich greens of Katherine and Darwin. It is when the train stops, however, that your adventure really begins, with chances to join inclusive excursions. They’re all hosted by top guides who will help you learn more about the landscapes you are crossing, the places you pause and the people you encounter. Afterwards, relax in the Outback Explorer lounge car, which has an amiable bar and comfy armchairs to sink into while you exchange stories and make plans for the next day’s adventure.
The Ghan operates April to October 2018 and April to March 2019.