The Very Best of Australia

Holiday Highlights

  • Guided sightseeing tour in Singapore
  • The legendary Ghan in Gold Class and Overland in Premium
  • Puffing Billy & Kuranda Scenic Railways
  • Great Barrier Reef day cruise
  • Bridge on the River Kwai day trip by rail and road
  • Time to explore in Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Cairns & Bangkok
  • 24 days from £7,945pp
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Tour Dates:
Sunday 5 November to Tuesday 28 November 2023

Embark on a rail adventure which showcases the very best of this diverse country - from vibrant cities to tropical rainforests. Journey through remote plains in luxury on board The Ghan and wonder at the kaleidoscopic colours of the Great Barrier Reef. Stopovers in Singapore and Bangkok break up the travel and provide a taste of Asian culture.


Day 1 – London to Singapore

Overnight flight to Singapore, arriving the following morning.

Day 2 – Singapore City Sightseeing

Enjoy getting to know Singapore on a half-day sightseeing tour of this vibrant city with a local guide who will take us to the popular tourist landmarks. Lunch is included before we check in to our hotel for an afternoon at leisure.

Day 3 – Singapore to Darwin

Direct flight from Singapore to Darwin where we have a 1-night stay.

Day 4 – The Ghan

We board the iconic Ghan train to take an epic 2,979km journey across Australia's Red Centre from Darwin to Adelaide. Accommodation is in Gold Service cabins with all meals and drinks included.

Day 5 – Alice Springs

Arrival in Alice Springs this morning where optional sightseeing tours will be on offer (several of these are included with our class of travel). This outback city is the heart and soul of central Australia, rich in history and culture.

Day 6 – Adelaide & Wine

On reaching Adelaide, we have lunch and a wine tasting at a local vineyard before checking in to our hotel for the next 2 nights.

Day 7 – Relax in Adelaide

Today is free to relax and sightsee in Australia's fifth largest city. Wander down the grand tree-lined North Terrace boulevard which boasts Adelaide's most imposing buildings. You may wish to visit one of the city's many museums or simply wander though Central Market or the Botanical Gardens.

Day 8 – The Overland

Travel by train between Adelaide and Melbourne aboard the Overland, enjoying a relaxing journey while savouring the comforts and romance of rail. We travel in Red Premium with all-inclusive breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea served at our seats.

Day 9 – Puffing Billy

Enjoy a day trip out to Belgrave where we board the fabulous Puffing Billy Steam Railway for a scenic journey through Sherbrooke Forest – a superb example of rainforest noted for its native 'Mountain Ash' trees, a form of eucalypt and the tallest flowering plant in the world. There is time for lunch at Lakeside before our return journey.

Day 10 – At Leisure in Melbourne

A day to explore and unwind. A great way to explore the city is via the free City Circle Tram which covers all the essential sightseeing stops and provides a great introduction to this wonderful city. Melbourne boasts the National Gallery of Victoria, Australia's oldest and most visited art museum and the riverside Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria which feature a mix of native and exotic plants. Flinders Street railway station in the central business district is a busy transport hub known for its Edwardian architecture.

Day 11 – XPT to Sydney

We depart Melbourne on board the NSW TrainLink XPT service to Sydney. Travelling in first class, sit back, relax and watch the beautiful scenery go by. We arrive in Sydney early evening for a 3-night stay.

Days 12 & 13 – Sydney at Leisure

We have two days at leisure in Sydney. There is plenty to see and do here and your tour leader will be on hand to assist with arranging your excursions. Spend time at Sydney Harbour and take in the Opera House, Harbour Bridge and nearby Botanical Gardens. Take a ferry ride to capture some great photos of the Sydney waterfront. Circular Quays is a great stop for lunch and Darling Harbour for dinner! Travelling out to Katoomba in the Blue Mountains by rail is also a great way to spend a day.

Day 14 – Sydney to Brisbane

An early start today as we board the XPT service to wind our way northwards. At Casino, we switch to a coach for the last part of the journey to Brisbane for an evening arrival and 2-night stay.

Day 15 – At Leisure in Brisbane

We have a day to relax. Ride the CityCat ferry down the Brisbane River, enjoy a free clock tower tour at the City Hall and dip your toes at Streets Beach – Australia’s only inner-city, man-made beach boasts a sparkling blue lagoon surrounded by white, sandy beaches and sub-tropical plants.

Day 16 – Brisbane to Cairns

We have a leisurely morning before boarding the Spirit of Queensland to Cairns. On board, we travel in RailBed class which features a spacious seat by day with a state-of-the-art personal entertainment system, and a lie flat bed by night with all linen provided. Meals are also included on board and are served at your seat.

Day 17 – Cairns

Afternoon arrival into tropical Cairns where we stay for the next 4 nights.

Day 18 – Kuranda Scenic Railway

The famous Kuranda Scenic Railway winds its way from Cairns via Freshwater, to Kuranda, the village in the rainforest. En route, we pass spectacular waterfalls as we travel through Far North Queensland’s World Heritage-listed rainforest, the Wet Tropics. Thousands of species of plants and hundreds of unique creatures inhabit this lush green world. We return to Cairns via the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway, gliding above the forest canopy learning more about this ancient ecosystem.

Day 19 – Great Barrier Reef

Enjoy a day cruise out to Agincourt Reef, situated on the very edge of the Great Barrier Reef. Stay dry on a semi submersible and experience a diver’s view of the reef as you glide slowly through the reef lagoons and colourful coral gardens in air-conditioned comfort. Marvel at spectacular coral formations thousands of years in the making and home to an amazing array of exotic rainbow-coloured tropical fish. With some of the highest biodiversity in the world, some 1500 species of fish are found in the Great Barrier Reef! Lunch is also included at the pontoon, with drinks available to purchase at the bar.

Day 20 – Cairns at Leisure

We have a day to relax and reflect upon our Australian adventures today. Unwind at the Esplanade's swimming lagoon, explore the Botanic Gardens – a tropical paradise – and walk along the Rainforest Boardwalk to Saltwater Creek and Centenary Lakes, a birdwatcher's delight.

Day 21 – Cairns to Bangkok

Fly via Melbourne to Bangkok. We have a 2-night stay in this cultural city of contrasts, where the modern mixes with the historical and the people are among the friendliest in the world.

Day 22 – Bridge On The River Kwai

A day trip by rail to Kanchanaburi, home to the Bridge on the River Kwai and the start of the Burma Railway. Stops include the Bridge itself, the beautiful Sai Yok Noi Waterfall for lunch and Kanchanaburi War Cemetery. Travelling back by road allows us to visit the Thailand-Burma Railway Centre.

Days 23 & 24 – Bangkok to London

Day at leisure today before an evening check in for our flight back to the UK, arriving early morning.

Tour Route

Tour route map

Selected Hotels

Concorde Hotel, Singapore

Rydges Darwin Central, Darwin

Ibis Adelaide, Adelaide

Crowne Plaza Melbourne, Melbourne

Novotel Sydney Central, Sydney

Mercure King George Square, Brisbane

Novotel Cairns Oasis Resort, Cairns

Quarter Hualamphong, Bangkok

Please note - hotels can be subject to change

Price Includes

  • Flights in economy class on scheduled airlines
  • Accommodation in good quality hotels on a bed and breakfast basis
  • Lunch & half day sightseeing tour in Singapore
  • Gold Class cabins onboard the Ghan with all meals included
  • Lunch & wine tasting in Adelaide
  • Premium class seats onboard the Overland with all meals included
  • First class tickets on the NSW TrainLink XPT services
  • RailBed class onboard the Spirit of Queensland
  • Excursions as stated
  • Services of a tour leader from London and throughout the tourFlights in economy class on scheduled airlines
  • Accommodation in good quality hotels on a bed and breakfast basis
  • Lunch & half day sightseeing tour in Singapore
  • Gold class cabins onboard the Ghan with all meals included
  • Lunch & wine tasting in Adelaide
  • Premium class seats onboard the Overland with all meals included
  • First class tickets on the NSW TrainLink XPT services
  • RailBed class onboard the Spirit of Queensland
  • Excursions as stated
  • Services of a tour leader from London and throughout the tour

Price per person

Escorted holiday: £7,945
Single room supplement: £1,145
Deposit for this holiday: £200

Booking form

Download your tour booking form here.


Why Choose Ffestiniog Travel?

  • UK's first rail tour operator to run an overseas escorted rail holiday in 1974
  • Created for people who love rail holidays and exploring the world’s heritage railways
  • Dedicated rail holiday specialist - great destinations, sightseeing and unparalled railway content
  • Train ticket supplier for worldwide rail operators - we can plan and arrange your rail journey to anywhere
  • Knowledge of the world’s rail routes makes us leading specialists in escorted and Tailor Made rail holidays
  • Over 60% of our existing rail tour travellers return to holiday with us year after year
  • Committed to supporting rail travel and heritage railways around the world
  • Our profits support the continued preservation of the famous Ffestiniog and Welsh Highland Railways
  • Small, dedicated rail holiday travel team offering an award winning personal service

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