Linking the Highlands and the Sea

from Sydney or Wollongong

East Coast Heritage Rail have been operating heritage rail services in the Greater Sydney region since 1985, and we invite you to join us on our flagship tour – the famous Cockatoo Run, a vintage day return train departing Sydney Terminal for Robertson and Moss Vale* through the beautiful Southern Highlands. Enjoy reliving the railway experience of years gone by in our beautifully restored Standard Class heritage carriages, or recline in the luxury of Lounge Class – our licensed buffet car serves light refreshments and souvenirs throughout the journey.

The Journey:
A mainstay of our operations since 1995, the Cockatoo Run is a scenic journey along the Illawarra Line, passing first through the rugged natural beauty of the Royal National Park before a spectacular shift to coastal scenery as the line runs parallel to the south coast from Stanwell Tops through to Wollongong and Unanderra. From here you can marvel as the vintage diesel locomotive tackle the steep grades up the Illawarra Escarpment, and enjoy the transition from splendid coastal views to waterfalls and magnificent rainforest as the train climbs up to Summit Tank*, where we pause for you to admire the breathtaking views over Lake Illawarra to the Tasman Sea from the lookout.

We then continue through to historic Robertson, where you can disembark to explore the town’s rustic charms and enjoy a leisurely lunch or continue with the train through to Moss Vale* on selected trips. The train turns around before making the journey back to Central Station, traversing the same spectacular route as the sun sets in the evening, arriving back in Sydney prior to 7pm – an unforgettable day for all!

For detailed lineside notes about the trip which you can refer to during your journey, click here

The Staff:
Our friendly crew of volunteer Passenger Attendants will assist with your travel needs when you board and travel on the train, and will show you to your allocated seats. Our crew will point out highlights of the journey and offer information on places of interest that we pass.

How to Book:
Seats should be reserved prior to travel – bookings can be made via the links at the top of this page or by calling 1300 65 3801. Last minute, cash-only sales of tickets may be available on the train prior to departure at Sydney Terminal, however these are subject to availability.

Trains currently operate on selected Sundays – Interurban, Tourist, Premier and Lounge Class tickets are available, and compartments are available for booking. Seniors, Group and Family discounts are offered, and carriage hire can be arranged by enquiry.


The Village of Robertson things to do website

There is a licensed buffet service available on the train (serving hot and cold refreshments/ snacks and alcoholic beverages), however we ask that you please bring cash along in small denominations to help our buffet team, as EFTPOS facilities are very intermittent on most trips due to limited reception.

Indicative Timetable:

Sydney to Robertson
Sydney Terminal (Central) – depart 9:06am
Hurstville – 9:29am
Sutherland – 9:44am
Thirroul – 10:35am
Wollongong – 10:49am
Unanderra – 10:58am
∗Summit Tank – 11:50am (20 minute lookout stop)
Robertson – arrive 12:50pm (approx. 3 hours in town)
∗Moss Vale – arrive 1:40pm (approx. 1 hour in town)

Return Times:

Robertson to Sydney
∗Moss Vale – depart 2:55pm
Robertson – depart 3:45pm
Unanderra – 5:02pm
Wollongong – 5:10pm
Thirroul – 5:23pm
Sutherland – 6:12pm
Hurstville – 6:25pm
Sydney Terminal – arrive 6:47pm

∗ – Please note that for operational reasons, some trips may not run to Moss Vale or Summit Tank

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