Parramatta, NSW. Riding the Rails of Yesteryear

Ye Olde Steam Tramway

ParraParkTramAfter my recent trip on the Southern Aurora, I wondered why I have such a fascination with trains. Beyond the fact that they are such marvellous examples of human ingenuity, trains are a tangible link to our past. I realised that my sense of wonder was evoked much earlier when my family visited the Steam Tramway which used to run in Parramatta Park. Unfortunately, it was destroyed by fire in 1993. Parramatta Park Tram 103A has been restored by the Valley Heights Steam Tramway which is also restoring Parramatta Park Locomotive 1022.  The Valley Heights Tramway is at the Locomotive Depot & Museum which is open on Australia Day & has morning & afternoon teas on February 1 & 2. Perhaps I’ll give it a go!

ZigZagRailway_LithgowAnother railway we used to visit was the Zig Zag Railway at Lithgow with it’s magnificent viaducts. Unfortunately, it was burnt out in the October, 2013 fires and hopes to rebuild sometime in the future. Nowadays, Trainworks at Thirlmere appears to be the hub for budding train enthusiasts with rides, a museum and rolling stock displays. There’s a Trainworks cafe but it doesn’t appear to have scones.

In the Blue Mountains at Oberon, the Oberon Tarana Heritage Railway has been restoring the Station, Yard and track to Hazelgrove. Heritage Rail is running the Central West Express to Tarana, Bathurst or the Oberon Highland Steam & Vintage Fair at Oberon on Saturday, February 8th. The fares vary according to comfort and the service provided but the Premier Dining Class has a high tea for the return trip so that looks like an action packed day and for fellow lovers of recycled timbers there’s also The Wood Guys at the Fair!

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