Onto The Ghan

So, today (Sunday) we headed out from our hotel, and took our short ride to the Adelaide railway station to pick up The Ghan.  It’s a 1,850 mile train ride across the middle of Australia, from Adelaide in the south, to Darwin in the north.  It’s 2 nights and 3 days on the train. The name apparently is an abbreviation of an old nickname for the service, calling it the Afghan Express.

Anyway, a nice efficient check in service – greeted as we got out of the car, walked to the check in desk, got our boarding pass (the size of a credit card 😊😊) and off we went to get a quick bite to eat in the nice modern little terminal.

Then they announced boarding, and off we went:

So, settled in, figured our cabin out, bit of luggage sorting, introductions from our cabin team, and we quietly pulled out. To begin with, we passed through the Adelaide suburbs before getting out into the countryside.  Then of course it was time for lunch !

The food on the train is actually pretty good.  Seating is good and comfortable, and I like you get the decent sized windows so you can still see the views.  During this first lunch sitting, we saw 3 kangaroos (or were they wallabies?) hopping their way across a field, so that was an encouraging start.

We moved along gradually watching the landscape change, up to Port Augusta which was where darkness started to settle in.

It was interesting to see the landscape gradually develop during the journey.

Finally, still slightly full from lunch, off we went for dinner !! 😂😂😂😂

I like that when you go for dinner, the cabin team quickly head to your cabin and bring the bed down, pull the blinds etc., making it ready for sleep time ! We were fine with that, as although we were somewhat well time adjusted, we still weren’t totally there, going to bed early and waking up early, so happy days.  We both sort of find the gentle rocking of the train pretty conducive to getting off to sleep ☺️☺️☺️☺️

 

 

Out and About – Adelaide

After a gentle breakfast at the hotel, we walked just across the road to pick up a tram.  When we asked which tram to take at the hotel, we were told “there’s only one tram” 😊😊.  We decided we would take the tram to a little town called Glenelg, which was about a 30 minute ride from our stop.

Nice ride down, giving us chance to see parts of Adelaide, as well as the suburbs.  It’s well worth it, and a fun experience.  I just enjoyed looking out the windows, watching the Adelaide world go by.

Glenelg is a cute little beachfront town/village/suburb (not sure) which seemed pretty historical as the site where the original settlers of South Australia landed way back when.

We didn’t do anything too energetic (of course 😂), but enjoyed a stroll along the pier, looking out over the beach.  Took a visit to the Glenelg museum at the visitor centre, saw some old photos and memorabilia of the town (and a swimwear exhibition 😳😳).

Tram stop in central Glenelg !

Australians at play !

It really was a beautiful day.  Great beaches, nice water etc..  We sat and watched the world go by for a while with a drink (we are great people watchers ! ).  Watched a bit of beach volleyball (couldn’t watch too much as it made us tired), then headed back to Adelaide for a light lunch.  We enjoyed it.  For us, it was so much more fun than a guided tour where we needed to keep to an agenda – we weren’t in the mood for that.

Back in Adelaide, a bit of light shopping, then back to the hotel before dinner.  We were amused to see this young (very) busker out doing his thing in the shopping area.


Light and early dinner close to the hotel, where we enjoyed watching the various Saturday night groups going out for the evening, including what looked like several hen night/bachelorette groups ! Kept us amused anyway !

Adelaide First Day

So, off we went.  Checking out of the Shangri-La, and off to Changi Airport.  Checked in fine, although our check in agent was one of those who had elected to wear a mask because of this Coronavirus problem.  That’s ok, I respect that, but you can’t then hear what they’re saying to you – after what seemed like the 43rd “excuse me but I didn’t hear”, we got our boarding passes, headed through passport control and off to the lounge.

The flight itself was uneventful, left on time, arrived early etc.  I like Singapore Airlines as they seem to have found the optimum of “attentive but not intrusive” service in the cabin, and they don’t disappear into the crew rest areas for lengthy periods of time – there’s always someone around.  It’s just about a 6hr 30m flight from Singapore to Adelaide, so long enough for a nap at least.  The A350 is a pretty nice aircraft as a passenger. I liked it.

We landed in the morning in Adelaide, and it was pretty efficient getting through passports, getting luggage, and then customs, and we were soon at our hotel. We are staying at the Mayfair Hotel in central Adelaide.  Nice hotel.

 

Nice welcome, efficient check in.  Strange as it is, this is a photo of our actual room on the booking.com website:

The woman in the photo is ok, but we had to ask her to keep the noise down once or twice.

We had a quick bite for breakfast in the hotel, an (extended) nap, then headed out for a stroll, but of shopping etc.  Nice place with lots going on.

Headed back to the hotel, bite to eat and an early night.  I think we are getting on top of the time difference now, just in time for our train ride.