I’m married to an ex-Trainspotter and railway enthusiast, so it was no surprise my husband was keen to take our grandson along to the Western Australian Rail Transport Museum in Bassendean. The museum showcases WA’s rich railway history with a big collection of steam and diesel engines, telling a story of the railways that helped to build our great state of WA.
Once you’ve paid your entrance fee at the office (a reasonable $7 for pensioners), you step onto the platform where there’s the Australiand passenger train, as well as a signal box and also a gold bullion transport freight train.
Much of the train collection is made of engines and carriages used on the Western Australian Government Railways in the 20th century. There are items from the southern timber lines, eastern gold mines and also private lines, like the Midland Railway Company.
The collection begins with “Katie”, which was first placed into service in 1881, while the Fremantle to Guildford Railway was built. There are some huge steam trains, and also many diesel locomotives, which took over from the steam age.
The Western Australian Rail Transport Museum is very interactive, with many passenger carriages to walk through, and engines to get up close to. Steps lead up to most of these.
I loved the retro buffet car, complete with bar!
There is even a royal carriage!
We enjoyed having a sticky beak around the royal bedroom suites and lounge room which would have been very luxurious in their day. The royal carriage was used by King Edward (before his abdication). The Queen Mother was the last royal to travel in it in the 1960s.
If you’re a history buff, the exhibition building is has an extensive collection of railway photos and artefacts from the last 100+ years.
Do you love model trains? The WA Model Railway Club has a shed filled with working model railways. Here you can also purchase drinks, ice-creams and snacks. Picnics are also welcomed.
If you have young grandchildren in tow, they will enjoy a play on the playground. A gift shop has railway and train books for sale and look out for special events, including the annual “Railfest”, usually held in October.
The Western Australian Rail Transport Museum Bassendean is well worth a visit. It’s easy to spend a good couple of hours here.
Western Australian Rail Transport Museum Bassendean – The Details
Find The Western Australian Rail Transport Museum at 36 Railway Parade, Bassendean.
Phone: 08 9279 7189
Parking: Limited street parking is available. If traveling by train Ashfield is the closest station.
Open: Sundays 1pm – 5pm & Wednesdays 1pm – 4pm
Admission: Adults $9, Concessions $7 and Children $4 (4 – 14 years) Under 4’s Free.
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