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hang out on the Puffing Billy Railway

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Puffing Billy Railway

Ride this little world famous, heritage listed train through the Dandenong Ranges. The Puffing Billy is Australia’s oldest surviving and famously preserved steam train.

A favourite way to travel on board the Puffing Billy is to sit on the side of the carriage and dangle your legs, holding onto the safety bar.

The kids love to do this.

Watch the scenery pass you by as you travel through the mountain rainforest, through quaint little mountain villages and past some of the mountain inhabitant's backyards.

Some of these folk will actually greet you as you pass on by. Give them a hearty wave as you continue up the mountainside. 

Travel over a 25-kilometer journey taking you through thick forests and lush fern-filled gullies from Belgrave, only one hour east of Melbourne, to Emerald Lake Park and then onto Gembrook.

Puffing Billy History

The Puffing Billy Railway line has been in operation since 1900. In the early days it was used to transport people and goods between Ferntree Gully and Gembrook.

The narrow gauge railway line was used to ferry potatoes, carrots, vegetables, fruit and nursery goods grown in the lush and healthy soil of the Dandenong Mountains.

In the early 1900's saw milling became Gembrook's main industry and the little Steam Locomotive played a major role in this industry's success.

old time photo of the engineers and linesmen on the Puffing Billy railway lineHeritage photo of the engineers and linesmen on the Puffing Billy railway line

Years later after a couple of landslides a group of dedicated and enthusiastic volunteers assembled together to build new bridges and tracks. Melbourne now boasts this world class heritage steam train attraction, the Puffing Billy railway line.

Used by local Melbournians and Tourists alike, this is a ride for all ages to enjoy.

By Mikeybear (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons


Puffing Billy steam train route

Download the Route and Station PDF document here

The Puffing Billy now runs from Belgrave all the way up the mountain to the quaint hamlet of Gembrook.

The gardens of the JAC Russell Park adjacent to the Puffing Billy Station make for a great picnic venue.

puffing-billy-heritage-trainPuffing Billy Australia's Heritage Train
family having fun riding the puffing billy railway line compliments of http://www.flickr.com/photos/thomasrdororg/6317302661/Family having fun riding the Puffing Billy railway line

At each level crossing you will probably find a group of tourists and camera enthusiasts waiting to wave to you as you continue your journey up the mountain.

A fun thing to do is to pop the kids on top the train with an adult then the other party head on up to the first level crossing and wave to your kids, continue doing this till you reach the end of the tracks then on the way back down swap places.

railway crossing at Gembrook for the Puffing Billy compliments of http://www.flickr.com/photos/gemsling/278765686/Railway crossing at Gembrook for the Puffing Billy



Great Little Train Journeys Of The World - The Puffing Billy Railway [Region 4] - DVD


40 kms east of Melbourne and situated high up in the Dandenong Mountains you will find a relic of the steam age, Puffing Billy.

The train runs regularly between Belgrave and Gembrook, where the tracks finish. 

This steam train is the only surviving track in the ranges and is now a major tourist attraction for Victorian. 

Hundreds of volunteers now make sure that each engine is fully maintained as well as ensuring that the tracks are clear of debris and the all the bridges, level crossings etc are in top condition.




How To Get To The Puffing Billy Railway

If you are travelling by car along the Burwood Highway before you head up the Mountain call into the Upper Ferntree Gully Tourist Information Centre and check out the mural of the Puffing Billy Railway, meet some of our enthusiastic volunteers and pick up some brochures on everything that there is to see in the area.

Then make your way up the mountain to the Puffing Billy Station at Belgrave. Note there is a domestic terminal and also a specific terminal for Puffing Billy, just watch out for the signs.

Use the map below for directions on how to get to the Puffing Billy Station.


If you are travelling via Wellington Road towards Clematis you can turn left towards Menzies Creek or right towards Emerald Lakeside.

You are able to park near these stations and hop on board the Heritage Steam Locomotive as the train passes through these stations.

Parking for the Puffing Billy Railway Journey

  • At Menzies Creek free parking is available within the station grounds.
  • At Emerald the same applies except on the Special Thomas The Tank Days.
  • At Lakeside (Emerald Lake), there are council operated ticket machines.
  • At Gembrook the parking is free.

There is no parking at the Belgrave Puffing Billy Station however you are able to park at the Connex Trains' carpark and follow the sign-posted walkway under the main road bridge.

Public Transport And Puffing Billy

Suburban trains run quite frequently from Flinders Street (City) to Belgrave. The journey is a pleasant and comfortable 70 minute ride through the outer eastern suburbs of Melbourne.

Once you reach Belgrave all you need do is follow the signs and walk under the bridge to the Puffing Billy station platform

Check Metlink for time table details.

You may also like to break your journey at Emerald Lake (Lakeside). Enjoy the scenery, stroll the lakeside, try out the paddle boats or visit the Model Railway where you can see the train journey in miniature.

Enjoy a family picnic at the end of the track and relax in Gembrook. There are undercover BBQ facilities, a playground and Skate-Park at the top end of the township.

Another great idea is to combine a ride on the Puffing Billy and enjoy the Gembrook Market, a Handcraft market with a difference.

Held on the 4th Sunday of the month from 9:00am till 3:00pm, meet the locals and clever stall holders who make, bake or grow their own product.

waving the flag to go on the puffing billy railway line compliments of http://www.flickr.com/photos/williamsdb/3927677841/Start you journey back from Gembrook on the Puffing Billy railway line

Excellent Picnic Experience up in the Dandenong Ranges

Experience Oz Puffing Billy tourPuffing Billy steam train travelling through the Dandenong rainforest

Share in a piece of Victoria’s history with an iconic railway journey through the Dandenong Ranges on the Puffing Billy steam train. The scenic journey will take passengers through the tranquil rainforest, fern gullies and towering Mountain Ash trees along a 24km track from Belgrave to Gembrook and back.

Feel the wind in your hair as you cruise through the ranges on the open carriage railway while you take in the sights and listen to commentary about the local region. This is an experience for the children, parents, grandparents and railway enthusiasts who will all love taking a ride through Victoria’s history. Be sure to pre-book online as Puffing Billy tickets are in demand.

Book your experience, click the Buy Now button below.

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The Puffing Billy Railway operates everyday of the year except Christmas Day. There are somewhere between 2 to 6 services departing from Belgrave every day.

There is one service each day that offers the option of first class carriages and a luncheon.

The Steam and Quizeine Puffing Billy luncheon train is a great way to enjoy Australia's favorite little Steam Engine and gain a unique chance to step back in time.

puffing billy steam trainThe heritage listed Puffing Billy steam train getting ready to journey up the Dandenong Mountains

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Please note that some links on this page are to companies that I have an affiliation with. By that I mean that if you purchase a product through them I receive a very small commission. This way of earning income is termed Monetization and it is a way for me to keep my site out here for you to enjoy. I will only affiliate with companies that I feel offer value for money and excellent back up service. These are Companies that I personally have used to purchase products for myself, my family and my friends. To learn more please refer to my Disclaimer page

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