Almost 48 hours after boarding The Ghan on Day One in Darwin, and with only a few hours to go to Adelaide, I was surprised to wake up and discover that we were still very much in the Australian outback.


However, as the minutes and hours rolled by, increasing signs of civilization became evident. One of the more impressive (natural) sights of the morning was Flinders Range, a beautiful row of mountains in the distance, and one of the “not-to-be-missed” sights in Australia according to many.

This being my third day, I now had something of a routine on the train: wake up around 7am, get dressed, and enjoy a cup of coffee in my cabin while taking notes and enjoying the view from my bed.

However, this morning, more of my coffee ended up sloshing around in the saucer and on the table than it did anywhere else. Although not uncomfortable, the train track south of Alice Springs was noticeably rockier than the track between Darwin and Alice Springs. This is because the northern part of the route was only complete in 2004 in comparison to the southern part which was (re)built in 1980.

An announcement came through just before my 8:30am breakfast that we were one hour behind schedule, but that it was expected we would make up this time over the next four hours. Considering on my train trip across Canada we were four hours late after the first 48 hours of travel, I was suitably impressed at the time we were making. I’ve come to expect trains to be generally tardy, but so far my Australian rail experiences had proved to be quite the contrary.

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  • Nora Dunn

    In 2006, Nora sold everything she owned in Canada (including a busy financial planning practice) to embrace her dreams of full-…

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