Australia Trains

Spirit Of The Outback: 10 Things You Need To Know Before Riding

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The Spirit of the Outback is a phenomenal way to introduce yourself to the culture, the varying landscapes and the food that is quintessentially Australia. Enjoy the scenery of the quaint coastal towns that dot the terrain as you move north on an old-school, diesel engine. Step off the train and take a breather at various towns and get to know the community and its inhabitants. There is not a better way to see the Australian landscape than by riding on the rails!

Brisbane Train Station

What does Spirit of the Outback consist of?

The Spirit of the Outback consists of two classes of travel, First Class and Economy cabins, two dining cars and two carriages for seating. With these amenities, you are sure to have an amazing trip into the Australian wilderness filled with wonder and adventure.

On this 807 mile journey between Brisbane and Longreach, you will travel through glorious mountains, endless prairies and the sun-bathed earth of the Australian Outback. Knowledgeable staff will engage you in learning about the culture, people and history of the area to add ignite a passion for knowing more about this captivating part of the world.

Where does the Spirit of the Outback travel to?

The Spirit of the Outback travels from Brisbane and terminates in Longreach or vice versa. There are 21 stops between Brisbane and Longreach, adding opportunities to explore other excursions along the way. The main stops in which many people book additional excursions are in Maryborough West, Bundaberg, Gladstone, and Rockhampton.

Maryborough West

Get off the Spirit of the Outback and experience a colonial town like no other. Walk down its historical streets and gawk at the 27 murals on The Mural Trail. Immerse yourself in the town’s 175 year old history through its museums and parks. Grab a bite to eat or a relaxing cup of tea on Main Street, then visit the birthplace of Mary Poppins. Last, jump on a quick bus ride to the coast of Hervey Bay and take in some whale watching.


If you have a penchant for rum tasting, botanical gardens and Australia’s crown jewel, the Great Barrier Reef, then you will want to make sure you make Bundaberg one of your stops. Likewise, you can head to Mon Repo and watch the sea turtles come ashore to lay their eggs, or see the hatchlings make a run for the ocean. Take some time to relax on the beach at Bargara before you hop back on the train for your next adventure.


If you are looking for your main attraction to be The Great Barrier Reef Islands, this is definitely the place. Take your pick of islands to boat to, snorkel at or deep sea dive through as you discover one of the most coveted and sensitive places on Earth. This will be a fantastic adventure and a departure from your ride on the rails.


At this stop you will be in a riparian landscape that is remarkably different from the last few stops. Packed full of interesting adventures such as sandstone caves, outback wool sheds and antique cars there will be plenty to occupy your time on this stop. Explore the aboriginal culture at the Dreamtime Cultural Centre. Additionally, check out the Koorana Crocodile Farm and see some of the creatures that gave Crocodile Dundee his name.

Does the Spirit of the Outback have sleepers?

The Spirit of the Outback has sleeper cars that feature First Class and Economy accommodations. There are also carriages that provide comfortable seating for passengers not wishing for individual cabins.

What are the Spirit of the Outback cabins like?

The Spirit of the Outback cabins are comfortable spacious and private. There are several levels of cabin accommodations available.

First Class

In First Class, you can pick from a single or a double berth cabin. Each seat converts into a bed, while an additional chair converts to a washbasin. You also have exclusive access to the Tuckerbox Restaurant and the Shearers Rest for conversing and eating with other travelers. A chef’s meal of, perhaps, lambshank or grilled sirloin is provided here along with cocktails and other beverages.

Economy Class

The Economy Class has single sleepers and is much like First Class without the extra amenities. The Shearers Rest that sells hot and cold meals as well as snacks can be visited by First Class and Economy passengers for all their needs. A toilet area in the back of the car and a shower and luggage area in the front of the car round out the Economy Class Package.

There are also two carriages that feature seating only. There is also a shower room, luggage area and toilets in the rear of the carriage.

How much does the Spirit of the Outback cost?

The cost of the Spirit of the Outback is dependent on the level of service you book and your destination, but ranges between $120 AUD for a coach seat to $364 AUD for a single/twin sleeper cabin.

How long is the trip on the Spirit of the Outback?

The Spirit of the Outback is a 26 hour trip and 807 mile journey that will take you up the coast from Brisbane through some coastal cities before going West and inland through various cities to Longreach.

Can I put my car on the Spirit of the Outback?

Although the Spirit of the Outback used to provide car transportation services, this service is no longer offered.

What is on the Spirit of the Outback menu?

The Spirit of the Outback has a diverse menu that is provided by two carriage cars. The Tuckerbox is exclusively for First Class passengers and serves gourmet meals made fresh by a renowned chef. Enjoy exquisite meals of Wild Outback Barramundi or Tuckerbox Lamb Shanks. For breakfast, enjoy a hot breakfast of eggs and your choice of meat or take in a lighter fare of toast and oatmeal or just a coffee. All meals are included for First Class Passenger in their fare.

In Economy seating, you can enjoy hot or cold meals served at the Shearers Rest. Examples of a breakfast might be cereal, a hot ham and cheese croissant or a meal of eggs, bacon and baked beans. For lunch, you can choose from sandwiches, wraps and salads. Dinner will have you choosing from an assortment of meals such as meat pies, pizza and chicken tenders and chips.

Is the Spirit of the Outback All-inclusive?

The Spirit of the Outback is all-inclusive for First Class passengers. Included in your fare you will receive access to a dining car and a lounge as well as a First Class amenities pack. This pack includes both men and women’s product that are sourced from organic and sustainable companies. All chef’s gourmet meals are included in the fare and well as fresh linens for your bed.

The Economy Class does not include food items as they can be purchased on board. However, use of amenities such as the shower room, luggage area and toilets are free of charge.

Is The Spirit of the Outback worth it?

The Spirit of the Outback train excursion is an extraordinary and alternative way to see the coast of Australia and the interior of the Outback that is unique and interesting. Riding The Spirit of the Outback it totally worth doing. For a trip that takes about a full day, provides three full chef’s meals and all the beautiful scenery you can handle, it is a great way to see parts of Australia that may be overlooked by other travelers.

If you are planning and Australian train vacation, check out our tips for The Ghan and also The Indian Pacific Train, which are both great options.

Wendy Edwards
Wendy is a native of Atlanta, Georgia. But for the past seven years she has traveled by RV to many National Parks, monuments and everywhere in between. She and her family of five, a furry canine friend and a bearded dragon have crossed the United States thirty one times. She never tires of hiking, biking, camping and photographing this beautiful country.