Great Southern Rail, platinum service cabin

Great Southern Rail News 2016

Written by: Jovanka Ristich
Date: 16th February 2016

2016 news from Great Southern Rail (GSR), owner/operator of Australia’s two iconic railway experiences, The Ghan and The Indian Pacific, includes:

  • The return of the four-day Ghan Expedition – back by popular demand
  • The introduction of Platinum Club carriages across the network

The four-day GHAN EXPEDITION, launched last year to great critical success, is to return following its sell out inaugural season, with a series of 13 departures, 3rd August – 26th October 2016.

Travelling from Darwin to Adelaide, The Ghan Expedition showcases the best of Australia, from the tropical Top End to the wine growing regions of South Australia, via an optional fly-in trip to Uluru and a day spent in the underground mining town of Coober Pedy.

The Ghan Alice Springs to Darwin

Early sales indicate that this second season will be just as successful as the first, with 70% of spaces already sold.

ABOUT: The Ghan Expedition

  • The four day trips departing Darwin will commence of 3rd August
  • A further 12 departures will ensue, the last departure is 26th October
  • The all-inclusive fare includes:
    • River cruising or canoeing at Nitmiluk Gorge, Katherine
    • Extended touring options in Alice Springs
    • An upgrade to a scenic flight, tour and lunch at Uluru
    • A full day at Coober Pedy, the underground opal mining town
    • All on-board dining and beverages
  • Discounts of up to 20% are available on advance purchase fares

Outside of these dates, the normal three-day Ghan experience will continue but will not include Coober Pedy, scenic flights to Uluru, or an extended stay in Alice Springs.

PLATINUM CLUB is GSR’s first major refurbishment across its entire Ghan and Indian Pacific fleet since 2008. See video of the making of The Ghan and Indian Pacific’s luxury Platinum Club.

The Platinum Club carriage, for the exclusive use of Platinum guests, features:

  • A deluxe bar and lounge
  • Fully flexible dining:
    • A daytime lounge setting with adaptable dining options
    • An evening banquet layout suitable for captain’s dinners and larger group gatherings.
  • Seating for 30 dining guests with an additional 20 in the lounge area.
  • Quartzite tabletops, timber flooring, brass fittings and leather banquette lounge seating in tones of ash, moss and sepia.
  • Award-winning global architecture firm, Woods Bagot, partnered with Great Southern Rail on the refurbishment

This Platinum enhancement is a direct result of the 24% increase in customer demand for Platinum service travel over the past two years.

The design concept for this new carriage was driven by two major requirements: to allow the unique nature of the Outback to take centre stage, and for the palette of textiles and materials to reflect the classic age of transcontinental travel.


The Ghan and Indian Pacific experiences can be booked as part of a wider Australian itinerary with the following tour operators:

Austravel (0800 988 4834) is offering a seven-day Australia itinerary, based on departures in July 2016, from £2,695 per person. The offer includes:

  • Two nights at four star The Vibe Hotel, Darwin
  • Two nights on board The Ghan (Gold Service)
  • Two nights at the four star Majestic Roof Garden Hotel, Adelaide
  • Return international flights

ABOUT: GREAT SOUTHERN RAIL is the owner/operator of both Australia’s great rail journeys.

The Ghan covers 2,979km between Adelaide and Darwin snaking through Australia’s Outback via Alice Springs. 2014 marked the Ghan’s 85th anniversary. The Ghan’s inaugural journey taking place in 1929 and was solely between Adelaide and Alice. It took another 75 years to complete the remaining section between Alice and Darwin. In 2004 The Ghan become a bonefide cross continental experience.

The Indian Pacific crosses 4,353km coast to coast between Sydney and Perth via Adelaide and across the Nullarbor Plain. 2015 saw the Indian Pacific celebrate its 45th anniversary.