Journey south by coach to meet JA1271 and her train of heritage carriages. Once onboard our train, settle in and immerse yourself in the unique atmosphere that only steam on the Main Trunk line can bring.
Jump on board with the Glenbrook Vintage Railway and Steam Incorporated as we join forces and celebrate 100 years of the Waiuku Branchline – where the GVR is based – and Steam Inc celebrates its 50th anniversary!
Glenbrook Vintage Railway have teamed up with our Wellington based friends at Steam Inc to bring to Glenbrook their resplendent Ja1271, for a number of joint trips in Auckland & the Waikato.
So hop on board as we step back in time – to how rail travel used to be – and experience steam on the main line.
Exciting bus/train options for you and your party to meet Steam Inc's JA1271 and its train on her delivery trip to Glenbrook.
Option 1 - Manukau/Pukekohe to Taumarunui and return
Boarding JR Coachlines of Waiuku, well appointed coach at the Manukau Transport Centre, settle in and tame your excitement as we head south to find our steam train. After stopping briefly at Pukekohe for passenger pick-ups, we continue on our way south on SH1 before branching off near Hamilton heading towards Pirongia. Passing through the familiar towns of Otorohanga and Te Kuiti, before negotiating our way to Taumarunui.
At Taumarunui, you have a quick opportunity to grab a brew and some lunch. The surrounding hills of Taumarunui will be reacquainted with the sound of a steam whistle as it arrives into Taumarunui - signalling for you to join the train. Once onboard, relax as JA1271 hauls our train alongside the picturesque Ongarue river before digging in to the hills as we climb through Waimiha and towards Poro-o-Tarao tunnel - there is no better sound than a steam locomotive working hard! From Poro-o-Tarao we descend towards Te Kuiti, passing stunning rock formations and crossing the Waiteti viaduct then into Te Kuiti where we will be stopping to refuel and service the steam locomotive. North of Te Kuiti, Ja1271 will be in her stride as she negotiates its way through the south Waikato farmlands before arriving into Hamilton.
After taking on water at Hamilton, we depart northbound to Glenbrook. The timeless steam locomotive and her heritage train passing through the young and growing cityscape of Hamilton provides quite the contrast. Then passing over the Waikato river at Ngaruawahia, we continue our journey through Taupiri and the mining town of Huntly. Along the Ohinewai straights (no speed records will be set here today!) and through the Whangamarino wetland, the second largest bog and swamp in New Zealand, before we begin out climb up and over Whangarata and Buckland and through Pukekohe. At Paerata we say farewell to the North Island Main Trunk and cross over onto the Mission Bush Branchline - the old Waiuku Branchline, shortly arriving into Glenbrook where JA1271 will call home for the next few weeks. At Glenbrook we say farewell to you, here you transfer onto your coach again to shuttle back to Pukekohe and Manukau - a short shuttle home to reminisce on the magical day you have experienced.
Option 2 - Frankton-Hamilton to National Park and Return
Boarding JR Coachlines of Waiuku, well appointed coach at the Frankton Railway Station in Hamilton, sit back and relax as we head south on a journey back in time. Our road journey today follows the trail of rail between Auckland and Wellington. Passing through towns like Otorohanga, Te Kuiti and Taumarunui - all connected to the rest of New Zealand by the railway. South of Taumarunui we climb all the way to National Park where you will have time to visit the station cafe for refeshments. Listen as the sleepy village comes alive with the sound of JA1271 and her train as she approaches the station.
Once onboard, we get straight into the action as we descend to the settlement of Raurimu - the foot of the Raurimu spiral. Catch glimpses of our train as it winds its way around the sharp curves all the way down to Raurimu. After which we continue our descent to Taumarunui, following the Whakapapa river for the most part before crossing over the the Whanganui river and into the famous railway town of Taumarunui. Here we pick up our Auckland friends then continue on. Following the picturesque Ongarue river before digging in to the hills as we climb through Waimiha and towards Poro-o-Tarao tunnel - there is no better sound than a steam locomotive working hard! From Poro-o-Tarao we descend towards Te Kuiti, passing stunning rock formations and crossing the Waiteti viaduct. A short stop at Te Kuiti to refuel and service the steam engine gives you the opportunity for walk around the main street before reboarding our train for the journey home. As we head north from Te Kuiti, Ja1271 will be in her stride as she negotiates its way through the south Waikato farmlands before arriving into Hamilton, where we will say farewell to you here.
A unique opportunity to experience the unforgettable atmosphere of steam on the Main Trunk line - not to be missed!
Ex Manukau/Pukekohe to Taumarunui & Return
General Admission (ages 2+) $159
Ex Frankton-Hamilton to National Park & Return
General Admission (ages 2+) $159
|National Park (Coach)||arr.||11am|
|National Park (Train)||dep.||11.20am|
As this is a pre-booked allocated-seating tour, face coverings are not compulsory but are strongly encouraged. For more info see the official NZ Government COVID-19 website.
In the event that the NZ Government or its agencies prevent the operation of this tour taking place due to COVID-19, refunds of fares paid (net of outgoings made from those fares) may be made by GVR upon written application being received from booked passengers.
We aim to seat passengers from the same booking together. You will be allocated at least one window seat for bookings of 2 or more (subject to availability). Where possible, seats will be turned to face the direction of travel (pairs and singles) or to face each other (groups). If you are travelling with people on a different booking or have another specific request then please email us as soon as possible at [email protected] and we will try and accommodate your request the best we can. Your allocated seat and carriage details will be on your boarding pass which will be emailed to you at least 2-3 days before your departure date.