It’s that time of year again when your Facebook feed is full of photos of everyone in the European summer. And if you’re not one of them, it can be a pretty bleak time of year. If you’re itching to travel but just don’t have the time or funds, why not take a little weekend getaway on the train. While it’s usually an activity reserved for grey nomads and lost tourists, the rural trains from Sydney are cheap and a actually perfect way to enjoy a weekend away out of the city.
Trains depart at least once an hour and take two and half hours to Mount Victoria or three hours to Lithgow. Mount Victoria is a good base stop for further exploration of the Mountains or worth a visit alone for its historic buildings and cute cafes. Lithgow is on the Western border of the Blue Mountains and is a great stop if you want to explore great lookouts and beautiful valleys.
A trip to the Hawkesbury will take you just one hour on a train that departs at least twice each hour from central. Get off at Hawkesbury River station in the town of Brooklyn and spend the day fishing, kayaking, or devouring some oysters at a lakeside restaurant.
The train to Wollongong is located on the Sydney Train’s South Coast Line and departs regularly from central. Enjoy the beautiful beaches and be sure to check out some of the great cafes. Head to His Boy Elroy for a wicked dirty dog, cheeseburger or burrito.
Just less than three hours on the South Coast Line will get you to Kiama. Its a perfect day trip that will see you leave the city smoke in the morning and have you standing by the famous blowhole in the afternoon. On the third Sunday of each month the Seaside Markets are held showcasing great local arts and collectables.
Catch the train from Central Station to Campbelltown then change to a NSW Trainlink train for an 80-minute journey to Moss Vale in the southern highlands. This little country town definitely feels worlds away from Sydney and is a perfect Sunday adventure. There’s plenty of wine grown in this region so have a few glasses to truly unwind. Check out Bernies Diner, established in 1925 for classic burgers and milkshakes.
Bowral is the largest town in the southern highlands and is famous for its country gardens and tulips in Spring. Cricket fans will be interested to know it’s the home of the Sir Donald Bradman Oval but there’s also plenty of bushwalking, scenic lookouts and cafes to explore.
People really seem to give the Nations Capital a hard time, and here’s another reason to: the train from Sydney takes over 5 hours! It’s an easy 3-hour drive by car to Canberra so god knows why you’d opt for the train. Perhaps you just love trains and the thought of a five-hour journey is thrilling. If so, then go right ahead! Canberra is popping out hipster cafes and artisan bakeries at an alarming rate so you will be well rewarded if you can endure the long travel time.
Catch the Central Coast Line to Gosford and jump on a train to the beautiful Avoca Beach. It’s a popular holiday destination with plenty to do. Surfing is great for both beginners and the more seasoned riders. If you’re not game to get in the water in the winter months then make the most of the beautiful bush and beach walks.
Its about three hours from Sydney to Newcastle which is pretty reasonable when you consider the beautiful beaches they’ve got just waiting for you to explore. There’s plenty of bushwalks, wetlands and reserves that are a nice way to appreciate the beautiful landscapes right on Sydney’s doorstep