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Day trip to Blue Mountains: Guided tour or DIY on City Rail?

Day trip to Blue Mountains: Guided tour or DIY on City Rail?

Dec 12th, 2010, 01:55 PM
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Join Date: May 2010
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Day trip to Blue Mountains: Guided tour or DIY on City Rail?

Trying to plan for a day trip.

One option is to take one of the guided tours.

Another option is a Multi3 weekly pass which includes trains to the BM and put together a do-it-yourself highlights of the Blue Mountains that can be taken in in one day (which presumably is what the guided tours do).

But is DIY a good idea for a first-time visitor? Is the train an efficient way to move between the different BM towns? There seem to be a lot of stops but presumably you will need other transportation to get to certain places.
scrb11 is offline  
Dec 12th, 2010, 02:03 PM
Join Date: Oct 2007
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Certainly you can DIY, and train is a good way to go. Once in one of the villages (Katoomba is the one for the Three Sisters, cable rail etc), you can do a hop on/hop off, day or part day tour etc.

This link will probably be useful: http://www.visitbluemountains.com.au/
Bokhara2 is offline  
Dec 12th, 2010, 06:31 PM
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So with a MyMulti pass, you save money getting out to the BM but once there, to get around, it seems those hop on hop off buses aren't cheap.

And going between villages or the different train stops wouldn't cost money but depending on how frequently the trains run, it might not be the best use of time?

I'm looking at the OzTrek tour for $55. They refer to optional items so there may be additional costs, probably for the cable cars and such?

But if I can just get a MyMulti1 instead of a MyMulti3 (main difference between those appear to be how much of the train network is covered, whereas the bus and ferry coverage are the same) and not have to buy hop on hop off bus passes, it comes out about the same as the OzTrek tour?
scrb11 is offline  
Dec 12th, 2010, 08:08 PM
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I'm a local, so drive when I go to the Blue Mountains because, in my part of Sydney, the public system is three steps down from pathetic and it would take me too long to make all the connections.

And, because I'm not into sweating the small stuff - and most of all ... because I can.

However, if I were a visitor/tourist/traveller unfamiliar with the area, I'd have $55 on the desk of anyone who could do a whole day door-to-door, probably with commentary, faster than they could blink. $55? With a money back guarantee? How could you lose?
Bokhara2 is offline  
Dec 12th, 2010, 08:33 PM
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Depends what you are after. If it is just a basic introduction then go with this tour. If you want something better get back to us with what your interests are.
AlanJG is offline  
Dec 12th, 2010, 11:05 PM
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It seems Katoomba is the biggest attraction and presumably these tours would cover it.

I contacted them to see which areas they hit but they came back with, "we're all booked" even though I didn't mention which date I was interested in?

There are some other tour companies going for $80 to just under $100, with a ferry ride on the ride back so those may be alternatives as well.
scrb11 is offline  
Dec 13th, 2010, 12:16 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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When we were there is Sept 09, we had a hire car and stayed in Leura, we drove to Katoomba and parked up in the village a little bit up the road.
It was easy to fill a day just walking from the 3 sisters across the cliff path and down to the bottom, ride the almost vertical train and take the cable car too.
The view is fantastic and photographs are a must.

If you can get to the starting point,(and that is the difficult bit) the rest is do-able on your own if that's what you want to do.

Good Luck

Mucky is offline  
Dec 13th, 2010, 02:21 PM
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 3,336
scrb11, you can do this on your own without an organized tour. We did and it was extremely easy.

From a previous post of mine:

"Here's a suggestion for the Blue Mountains! You can gain even more flexibility and save money by going on your own without a tour.

Simply go to the CountryLink window http://www.countrylink.info/home at Circular Quay and buy a CityRail Blue Mountains ExplorerLink ticket. This ticket provides return train transportation from Central Station to Katoomba and an all day 'get-on-get-off’ Explorer Bus tour to 30 locations through the mountains. Stops include the Three Sisters at Echo Point, Leura village, the Scenic Railway plus many others.

You can leave when you want, see what you want, stay as long as you want and then return when it is convenient for you. Trust me, it is not complicated and very easy to do."

Vic's travels: http://my.flightmemory.com/vogilvie
Orlando_Vic is offline  
Dec 13th, 2010, 03:54 PM
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Thanks Vic, looks like $46.80 from the CBD stations.

I guess you would have to get from the Museum station, which is near where I'm staying, to Central and then change trains to Katoomba?
scrb11 is offline  
Dec 13th, 2010, 05:46 PM
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You could take either the train or the bus to Central Station. For the buses, if you walk up to George St all of the buses starting with 42 (428, 426 etc) go to Central Station.
Susan7 is offline  
Dec 18th, 2010, 07:49 PM
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Does that ExplorerLink ticket let you take any train to and from the Blue Mountains?

Or do you have to reserve seats on specific trains?

I tried a search from the countrylink.info site and I selected 22 December, 29 December and 5 January and they all come back and say change the dates. I don't know if that means those trains are booked on those dates, don't run on those dates or what.

Couldn't find the timetable.
scrb11 is offline  
Dec 19th, 2010, 06:02 PM
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I don't have any expertise with this but you might get different results using the Cityrail website, as the Blue Mountains is considered part of the Sydney network and not really country:
This is not to say that you can't get the ticket from CountryLink; that may well be the case. However, there will be more trains via Cityrail. I am not sure if you can take any of the CountryLink trains to the mountains. If you can, I am sure stops would be limited.

lavandula is online now  
Dec 23rd, 2010, 08:55 AM
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Yes you're right, cityrail.info is the way to go. They have trains leaving at 3 AM on weekdays?

Is that right?

They have weekly and longer-term tickets so folks must be commuting in between?
scrb11 is offline  

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