Map Legend:

  • Rail Trail
  • On Road
  • Possible Rail Trail
  • Other Trail
  • former Railway
  • A rail trial steeped in Colonial and Maritime history
  • The trail connects with the Coast Park, a 28km shared use trail along a continuous sandy beach coast line
  • The trail links with several side trails that explore the Port Dock precinct and the coastal beach area of Semaphore
  • A flat 23.5km ride on quiet roads and paths, adjacent to an existing railway line
  • Suitable for all the family

Attractions

  • Three quality Museums in one street – National Railway Museum, SA Aviation Museum and SA Maritime Museum
  • Port Dock historic precinct
  • Access to the Coast Park and beach facilities
  • Anna Rennie (Inner Harbour) Loop Trail

Trail Guide

The trail is divided into three sections commencing from the Adelaide Parklands and following the existing rail corridor to the Port Dock precinct and then on to the Outer Harbour.  The Outer Harbour Railway Line was constructed in 1856 to transport passengers and freight between Adelaide and the Outer Harbour / Port Dock sea ports.

Section Guides

Adelaide Parklands to Woodville Railway Station (8 km)

The trail commences on the cycle track near the Morphett Street Bridge and follows the River Torrens and the rail line westward past the Torrens Weir and then under the railway line into Bonython Park. Follow the river to the first bridge and cross it and continue to the edge of the Park Lands where the path turns right and crosses the railway line again and follows the line under the roadway. From this point onward the trail is clearly marked and progresses through the new Bowden / Brompton housing development and utilises bridges to cross main roads.

The trail follows the quiet suburban streets adjacent to the railway line through to the Woodville Railway Station. If you need a rest, stop at the MJ McInerney Reserve.

 

Woodville Railway Station to Port Dock Precinct (6 km)

At the Woodville Railway Station continue straight on. There is a path on the opposite side of the railway line that follows the branch line toward the suburb of Grange. This path is still in development but will soon form a rail side trail.

The trail continues on either quiet streets or shared use paths however there are several points where the trail crosses main roads. Fortunately, the crossing points are controlled by traffic lights.

The path passes under Grand Junction Road, winds through suburban streets until it enters the old Port Dock rail yards. At this point you will see the Aviation Museum, then, in Lipson Street, you will pass the Railway Museum and once you cross St Vincent Street you will see the Maritime Museum on the right. All the Museums are excellent for children and can take some time to visit.

Please note that Lipson Street is one way so the return trip uses Timpson Street – please check the Rail Trails Map.

You are now in the Port Dock Precinct and you will come to the Port River at the end of Lipson Street. You may notice some interesting paving along the wharf area which indicates where some of the old railway lines were located. This area had numerous train, tram and trolly bus tracks, along wharfs, down streets and over bridges. There is an interesting shared use 3.5km trail (the Anna Rennie Loop Trail) that circles the Port Dock area. Further details are available in the Side Trails section below.

 

Port Dock Precinct to Outer Harbour (9.5 km)

The trail uses the Birkenhead Bridge to cross the Port River and then crosses Semaphore Road and follows the existing rail line along Mead Street and then weaves its way through suburbia until finally crossing the rail line into Lady Ruthven Drive. The trail crosses Lady Ruthven Drive and then continues on a short distance to a large roundabout. Follow the shared use path to the left until you get to Lady Ruthven Reserve and the Outer Harbour Lookout. This is the end of the rail trail however there is a great option for the return trip by following the Coast Park shared use trail south along the coast to Semaphore and then returning to Port Dock via the Semaphore Rail Trail.

 

Side Routes

Anna Rennie Loop Path – previously known as the Inner Harbour Loop rail trail (3.5km loop)

Please note that the Anna Rennie Loop Trail overlaps the Outer Harbour Rail Trail where it crosses the Port River (Birkenhead Bridge) and follows Jenkins Street and a small section of Semaphore Road.

The Loop trail circles the Port Dock precinct, also known as the New Port which replaced the Old Port dock which was further upstream in the Port River and was basically a mosquito infested, smelly swamp. It was so despised by the colonists that it was called Port Misery. The New Port on the other hand was well constructed on reclaimed land with modern timber wharfs and bridges. The loop circles the Port River and provides cyclists and walkers with convenient and safe path. The trail has many interactive maps that allow the viewer to superimpose historical photographs from a century ago over todays view of the Port. Also of interest, is Hart’s Mill Playground, a convenient place to rest while the kids burn-off some energy. Further details and maps can be found in the Information and Links section below

 

Coast Park Trail

A 28km trail which follows the coast from Outer Harbour to Seacliff, south of Adelaide. Please note that a 5km section of the trail currently follows Military Road from Third Avenue Semaphore Park to the Grange Jetty. This 5km section is expected to be converted into a shared use path along the coast over the next few years. The Coast Park also connects with the Mike Turtur Rail Trail and the River Torrens Linear Park. Further information is available from the TrailsSA – see the link below.

Background Information

Traditional owners

We acknowledge the Kaurna people, the traditional custodians of the land and waterways on which the rail trail is built.

 

Development and future of the rail trail

The Rosewater Loop is a potential Rail trail of 5km in length that would connect the Outer Harbour Rail Trail with the Port River Bikeway via Eastern Parade. The loop was constructed in 1915 to alleviate congestion in the Port Dock rail yards and is no longer in use.

 

Rail line history

The Railway between Adelaide and the Port Dock Railway Station was opened in 1856 and was the second railway in South Australia and is believed to be the first Government owned railway in the British Empire. The rail line was later extended to Outer Harbour when a deeper sea port was required.

The Port Dock area was incredibly busy, bringing immigrants and produce in from abroad and exporting copper and farm produce to the world. All of this movement needed an efficient transport system. Port Road which runs parallel to the existing rail way line has an extraordinary width of more that 60m and is relatively flat and it was proposed by Colonel William Light in 1836 that a canal should be constructed between Adelaide and the Port Dock precinct. The proposal was romantic but did not measure up against the cost effective and efficient new rail technology that was emerging.

The Port Dock area became a maze of small rail lines, mostly privately owned and connected to the Wharf area and smelters. There were horse drawn trams, trains and trolly buses, steam trains and electric trams. Confusion reigned as no one knew who had right of way and no one cared because the private transport operators had to make money to survive. Eventually the port activity declined, the small private transport operators closed down and the State Government railway and bus services were all that remained.

No services listed for this rail trail.

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Map Legend:

  • Rail Trail
  • On Road
  • Possible Rail Trail
  • Other Trail
  • former Railway
Mole Creek is an attractive township in a valley on the route to Cradle Mountain. There is little chance of any length of rail trail being developed but the effort gone into preserving the rail heritage is worth a look if in the area. It includes some interpretive signage.

Attractions

  • The station precinct is of interest if in the area.

Background Information

The line to Mole Creek branched off from Lemana Junction near Deloraine and opened in 1890.  Timber pulp traffic kept it going longer than many other similar branchlines until 1985.

The community organised the heritage displays in 1998 and are still in good condition.

Most of the former line has been sold off (despite Google Maps still showing the railway there) but the alignment can still be seen in places along the road from Chudleigh to Mole Creek.

No services listed for this rail trail.

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Map Legend:

  • Rail Trail
  • On Road
  • Possible Rail Trail
  • Other Trail
  • former Railway
The Coles Bay Road follows the alignment of the Coles Bay Tramway, part of the old Dalmayne Colliery Transport Systems. The tramway ran from the Colliery at the now abandoned town of Seymour, south through Bicheno to the wharf at Coles Bay. The route can be followed by car from near the turn off on the Tasman highway south of Bicheno, to Coles Bay, a beautifully scenic location at the gateway to Freycinet National Park.

No services listed for this rail trail.

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Map Legend:

  • Rail Trail
  • On Road
  • Possible Rail Trail
  • Other Trail
  • former Railway
Mainly one for those interested in history. The trail is a marked on- and off-road heritage route following a private railway that ran just one train in 1888.    

Attractions

The council has installed quite ornate interpretive signs along the route in the footpaths.

Background Information

Traditional Owners

We acknowledge the Woiworung people, the traditional custodians of the land and waterways on which the rail trail is built.

Railway history

The Rosstown Rail Trail charts the original course of the private line which was the life long dream of William Murray Ross.  He built the line with the intention of transporting sugar beet to his sugar beet mill, and the refined product to the Port of Melbourne. From start to finish, the railway line was plagued with problems ranging from a lack of funds to construction delays.  When the mill failed to begin production, the line fell into disrepair without being used, and it was eventually dismantled, with the land being sold.

However we observe the contribution of one entrepreneur who made the City and its surrounds what it is today.

No services listed for this rail trail.

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Map Legend:

  • Rail Trail
  • On Road
  • Possible Rail Trail
  • Other Trail
  • former Railway
The main road between Zeehan and Strahan follows the route of a former railway for most of its length. The level gradients of the road are typical of a railway. 15km south of Zeehan, an unsignposted 4WD track leads west, close to the Badger River. This track follows the former railway easement for 5km while the road here takes to higher ground. Take care: after 5km the track stops abruptly at the top of a steep ravine, where there was once a railway bridge. On the other side, the railway continued a further 1km before rejoining the alignment of the road. A compaign is in place to keep the old formation clear of scrub but this should not be relied up on. please travel with care.   For more information on this trail see the book Rail Trails of Tasmania.

Attractions

This is an historical route followed by car for 51km.

No services listed for this rail trail.

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Map Legend:

  • Rail Trail
  • On Road
  • Possible Rail Trail
  • Other Trail
  • former Railway
  • At 192 m, the longest non-supported tunnel in the Southern Hemisphere
  • Drive, cycle or walk through the tunnel and look for the pick axe marks left by those who built it
  • Home to hundreds of bentwing bats
  • A great feat of engineering in a beautiful rural location
  • Railway history and heritage
  • Part of the Bicentennial National Trail
The former rail corridor and tunnel are an active road, take care.

Attractions

  • Birds and wildlife
  • Good climate most of the year
  • Railway history and heritage
  • Visit the historic Mt Perry Hotel
  • Close to the abandoned Boolboonda gold, silver and copper mine

Trail Guide

Note: no facilities; take all food and water

  • You can walk cycle or drive through this 192m tunnel,
  • If the tunnel is approached from Gin Gin (east side) it is clearly signposted on the left and close to the Gin Gin – Mt Perry Rd.
  • After passing through the tunnel the trail winds for 3km back to the main road giving a good sense of the terrain the trains had to battle through.
  • Here there is a sign (if coming from Mount Perry, west side) reading ‘Tourist Drive 6’. It is then about 12km to the historic mining town of Mt Perry. The rail line corridor is still visible in places from the road but what remains is difficult to follow and after leaving the trail portions of it is on private land.
  • The tunnel is on the same rail corridor as the Watawa Recreation Trail.

Background Information

Traditional Owners

We acknowledge the Gurang Gurang people, the traditional custodians of the land and waterways on which the rail trail is situated.

Development and future of the rail trail

Most of the old railway reserve is now road reserve making it unlikely that the trail could be extended.

Rail Line history

The tunnel was constructed in 1883/1884 as part of a railway from North Bundaberg to Mount Perry. This section of the line closed in 1960.

No services listed for this rail trail.

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