The Cockle Train Victor Harbor History and Information May 9, 2016
The Cockle Train is a transportation service in Australia that travels along the oldest steel railway which was constructed back in 1887. This railway provides a link between the River Murray, Port Elliot and Victor Harbor.
The railway track from Goolwa to Port Elliot was the first public railway in Australia which was laid in 1854, after 10 years the steel tracks was extended to Victor Harbor. The Cockle train operates on steam engine and the carriages were built in the early 20th century. The train is usually open during school holidays, public holidays and most of the weekends. Riding the Cockle Train proves to be one of the top things to do Goolwa.
Why “Cockle Train”?
The train that most tourists take to tour the coast of the Southern Ocean from Goolwa to Victor Harbor is known as the Cockle train. The sandy beaches around the Goolwa area is best known for cockles and local residents in the early days take a horse drawn train to Goolwa to collect cockles from the beaches. The horses were used to pull carriages until the steam engines were introduced.
The Cockle Train starts the tour from the Goolwa Station, right in the historic Wharf Precinct and travels alongside the River Murray. After travelling from main Goolwa towards the plains, the trains comes in to its first stop for dropping off and picking up passenger in Middleton.
Next to Middleton is Port Elliot, where passengers can enjoy the Encounter Bay coast. The station in Port Elliot also has a small museum which can be visited by tourists. The train then climbs to the coastal cliffs of the Fleurieu Peninsula where everyone can see the most picturesque scenery of the coast. The passengers can fully enjoy the perfect scenery featuring the Southern Ocean.
The train finishes its run into the Victor Harbor. You can get off the Cockle train and enjoy the iconic pine trees which are famous in the centre of the town. Before the return journey to Goolwa is an electric turntable is used to rejoin the locomotive to the carriages.
Trains and tickets
Passengers can purchase their tickets at any of the stations for a one-way journey of for a much cheaper priced round trip. The trains wait for passengers for about 30 minutes at the end stations (Goolwa and Victor Harbor). Roundtrip passengers also have the option to extend their stay at both stations by returning on a later train.
You can get more information about The Cockle Train and other trains in South Australia by visiting the StreamRanger website.