Bathurst certainly delivers joy for any transport lovers with the National Motoring Museum and the Bathurst Rail Museum within a short drive of each other. We visited both museums in one day and enjoyed learning more about how the railway line to Bathurst played an important role in the town becoming what it is today. We were pleased to find accessibility is excellent at both museums. So if you are visiting Bathurst and looking for a family-friendly activity which suits all ages, make sure you stop in at the Bathurst Rail Museum.
BATHURST RAIL MUSEUM
The Bathurst Rail Museum explores the completion of the railway between Sydney and Bathurst. The Main Western Line was celebrated as a marvel of engineering, opening up opportunities for people living in Central NSW. The museum is housed in the historic Railway Institute building. If the walls could talk they’d have plenty to divulge about the social gatherings, celebrations and courses which used to be held here for rail employees and their families.
For children, and kids at heart, the model railway will be the drawcard here. It’s the largest public HO scale model railway in Australia. Complete with working trains it explores the Great Western Line between Tarana and Bathurst.
While the kids are mesmerised by the model trains completing the circuit, adults will have time to listen and watch the stories of the people who worked on the railways and lived in the area on the big screen.
KIDS CENTRAL – BATHURST RAILWAY MUSEUM
We watched kids who were absolutely itching to touch the large scale model railway but it’s something to appreciate with your eyes only. Therefore it’s wonderful to see the dedicated children’s area within the Bathurst Railway Museum. Kids Central is an interactive play and learning space with one of the world’s largest permanent BRIO train sets.
Even as an adult I found this light, bright and fun environment enticing. BJ would have absolutely loved playing here when he was younger.
As well as the BRIO train set, kids can learn about train hand signals and use the station set up for imaginative play.
Seating around the sides of the play area allows accompanying parents the opportunity to relax with a cuppa from the adjoining cafe.
Due to social distancing requirements the number of people in this space is limited. Bookings are recommended. Click here to book into a session.
If you are visiting with older children, or without kids, then you can choose to sit outside near the cafe or in the historic train carriage which sits out front.
Gift buying for the train lover in your life is made easy with a themed gift shop which caters to all ages – toddler to hardened train enthusiasts.
Accessibility is excellent with level access throughout. Two accessible parking spaces are located out the front of the museum and a unisex stand-alone accessible bathroom is available within the museum.
You can read more about the Bathurst Rail Museum on their website.
We were guests of the Bathurst Rail Museum but as always our opinions are our own and we think this is a great family-friendly activity if visiting Bathurst. BJ is absolutely mad for trains so he was in his element.