Gulflander and Savannalander tour packages - Photo
Train trips from Cairns to Gulf Country and Karumba - Photo
Gulf Tours from Cairns 2024 - Photo
Queensland Rail Tours 2024 - Photo


Day 1. Sunday – Cairns

Arrive in Cairns and check in to our centrally located hotel. In the evening we’ll meet for a celebratory welcome dinner and drinks. Overnight: Novotel Cairns Oasis Resort, Cairns (D)

Day 2. Monday – Cairns, Normanton, Karumba

Late in the morning you will be transferred to Cairns airport for our Regional Express flight to Normanton. On arrival in Normanton, exploring Normanton we will transfer to Karumba and settle into our accommodation for the next two nights. Dinner this evening is at the popular Sunset Tavern, watching the sun set over the Gulf. Overnight: Ash’s Holiday Units, Karumba (B,D)

Day 3. Tuesday – Karumba

This morning after a hearty breakfast, our friends at Karumba host a bird watching boat tour along the river and estuaries including a history of the town from the aspect of the river as the gateway to the Gulf. The rest of the morning is at leisure for you to enjoy the town and take a break from the busy schedule to just relax. You also have the option to visit the Barramundi discovery centre which your tour leader can facilitate. We then gather in the late afternoon to join the Luxury Sand Island Sunset Dinner Cruise. Our little boat takes off from Karumba out into the Gulf waters. Watch the sky and sea turn to fire while relaxing on Sun Island (tide and weather permitting), an intriguing and completely flat sand cay. We enjoy a light dinner of banana prawns, a specialty fish dish, tropical fruit platters and ice-cold drinks. Overnight: Ash’s Holiday Units, Karumba (B,D)

Day 4. Wednesday – Karumba, Normanton, Croydon, Cobbold Gorge

After an early breakfast we roll back across the flood plains and grasslands to Normanton and board the legendary Gulflander. Also known as the Tin Hare, the old rail motor has traversed the line between Normanton and Croydon every Wednesday for over a century on a unique line known as, “the line from nowhere to nowhere”. Our driver and guard keep the commentary rolling and the whole experience is a slice of authentic Australian bush travel complete with the odd stop to drop off mail or allow wandering livestock and native animals to cross our path. We arrive in time for lunch at the Croydon local café and then our coach takes us to the remote out-station of Cobbold Gorge Resort, arriving just after sunset where dinner is hosted on the deck of the restaurant. You are then free to have a nightcap at the bar or wander back to your cabin, marvel at the stars and enjoy the peace and quiet of this wild location. Overnight: Cobbold Gorge Resort, Cobbold Gorge (B,L,D)

Day 5. Thursday – Cobbold Gorge

After a hearty bush breakfast, we will join a morning tour and cruise of Cobbold Gorge. Custom-made electric boats glide through the water below the spectacularly sculptured gorge walls in an almost eerie silence, ensuring minimal disturbance to wildlife. There’s every chance of seeing one of the resident freshwater crocodiles! After lunch we will board our all-terrain vehicle for a tour of Robin Hood Station (supposedly named because it adjoined the Sherwood mining lease), a 1284-square-kilometre cattle grazing property run by third-generation cattleman, Simon Terry and his wife Gaye. On your station tour you will visit the cattle yards, dams and outbuildings, hearing rare insights into the cattle grazing industry and relaxing over a traditional outback ‘smoko’. You can also take an optional helicopter joy flight to see this spectacular country from the air. Overnight: Cobbold Gorge Resort, Cobbold Gorge (B,L,D)

Day 6. Friday – Forsayth, Mount Surprise

Staff from Cobbold Gorge Tours will transfer us to Forsayth where we board the Savannahlander for the first stage of its 500-kilometre journey to Cairns. Departing Forsayth Station, the terminus of the Chillagoe Railway and Mining Company line built in 1910, the train traverses the Newcastle Range and later, pauses for lunch at the iconic Einasleigh Pub right beside the vast Copperfield Gorge. In the mid-afternoon, the train pulls into Mount Surprise where we will transfer to Undara Volcanic National Park to visit the Lava Tubes, giant volcanic caverns—the oldest in Australia and the longest on Earth. At sunset, head back to Mount Surprise, and enjoy dinner at the village or wander over to the character-filled pub or settle in for some entertainment around the campfire at the village. Overnight: Mt Surprise Village, Mt Surprise (B,L,D)

Day 7. Saturday – Mount Surprise, Cairns

The second leg of the Savannahlander journey to Cairns has us boarding early at Mount Surprise. The journey is full of rugged scenery, and we’ll make a few stops: lunch at the Railway Hotel, Almaden; Dimbulah for afternoon tea; Barron Falls and the grand Barron Gorge; and finally, into Cairns in the evening. We will stay at the centrally located Novotel Cairns Oasis Resort and dinner this evening is at leisure. Overnight: Novotel Cairns Oasis Resort, Cairns (B,L)

Day 8. Sunday – CAIRNS – Port Douglas – Mossman Gorge – Kuranda

This morning we head north, by air-conditioned coach to Mossman Gorge with a morning tea stop in Port Douglas along the way. We then travel to the Mossman Gorge Cultural Centre for a light lunch followed by a walk through the beautiful tropical rainforest in Mossman Gorge itself. We will return to Cairns and travel on to Kuranda, “The Village in the Rainforest”. The Skyrail Gondola is a special experience that takes us down to the coastal plain, flying over the canopy of the rainforest and marvelling at the wonderful views across the ranges and out over the Coral Sea. This evening is at leisure to explore the Cairns Esplanade, just around the corner from our hotel. Overnight: Novotel Cairns Oasis Resort, Cairns (B,L)

Day 9. Monday – Tour End

Breakfast is at your leisure in the hotel and then you are free to continue on your way to other awaiting adventures. Tour terminates. All out, all change. Please mind the gap! (B)

dates & pricing

Twin Share Sole Use Departs 2024
$5795 $6675 11 August – SOLD OUT
Twin Share Sole Use Departs 2025
  • A deposit of $500 per person required to secure your reservation
  • Final payment 50 days prior to departure

Highlights & inclusions

  • Travel across the wide Savannah on the legendary Gulflander, know as the “Tin Hare”
  • Flight over Far North Queensland to the Gulf Country
  • Boat trip to a private sand island in the Gulf for a sunset soiree
  • Fascinating guided Cobbold Gorge and Undara Lava Tube experiences
  • Two days’ gentle travel on the iconic outback Savannahlander train
  • Two nights at the wonderful Cobbold Gorge resort with excursions
  • Visit and ride the ‘Peckett Steam Train at the Atherton-Herberton Historic Railway and Museum
  • Visit Kuranda and ride the scenic Skyrail
  • Characters, scenery and iconic journeys from the desert to the tablelands and rainforest
  • Ride the Peckett Steam Train at The Atherton Herberton Historic Railway
  • 9 nights’ accommodation in comfortable, 3- or 4-star hotels
  • Breakfast Daily, six lunches and seven dinners
  • Complimentary drinks with welcome and farewell dinners
  • Comprehensive sightseeing with expert local guides
  • Economy Class flight Cairns to Normanton, 15 Kilo luggage allowance
  • Excursion/entrance fees, except those listed as optional in the itinerary

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