Through the boom years of west coast mining, steam locomotives hauled a fortune in pure copper from Queenstown's Mt Lyell mine, through the rugged King River gorge and down to the Macquarie Harbour port of Strahan. From 1896 to 1963, steam billowed through the rainforest as the German designed Abt West Coast rack railway dragged the train, cog by cog, up the steep 1:16 slope to Rinadeena.
Now, after 40 years, the West Coast Wilderness Railway is running again. You're able to travel through one of the world's last pristine wilderness areas crossing 40 bridges, wild rivers, and climb over 200 metres on a fascinating 35-kilometre journey from Queenstown to/or from Strahan.
You'll also have the opportunity to visit an old gold mining settlement, explore the mine by candlelight and pan for gold in the river.
The West Coast Wilderness Railway runs all year round apart from Christmas Day. Phone +61 3 6471 0100 for bookings and information.