For our transport loving guy a visit to the Sydney Bus Museum was an ideal outing today. The Sydney Bus Museum houses Australia’s largest collection of historic double-decker buses, including those from Sydney, Adelaide and London. The museum tells the story of the history of bus transportation and the original workshop building in which it’s housed is wheelchair accessible. For Hubby and I it was a walk down memory lane and a reminder that our childhood and youth is very much a part of history now. A little unsettling to recognize more than a few of the buses on exhibition.
AJ and I are not motor enthusiasts like the boys, but the buses definitely have a personality and style about them which won me over. I even got behind the wheel of one like a big kid. When else will I have the opportunity to “drive” a bus? Hubby and AJ assured me that I’d be a menace on the road if I had that big wheel in my hands.
The collection consists of over 70 vehicles and an extensive archive on Sydney’s road transport history including tickets, signage, photographs and more. I know the new preloaded tap cards are all the go but I was thrilled to see some of the colourful little tickets which I used when travelling with my Mum on public transport as a little one. It took me right back to the thrill of getting my ticket and holding her hand as we went off on an adventure. It’s so lucky there are people with the patience and dedication to preserve this history for people like me to reminisce over and for my kids to see. I know they just love the stories that went with the memories evoked by the displays. I’m now officially one of those parents.
There’s such a wonderful variety of vehicles which date from the 1920’s to the 1980’s.
It was especially interesting to read about the Sydney buses during World War II and the appointment of Violet McNamara who was amongst the first women to be employed as a conductress during that time.
BJ was particularly keen to take the opportunity to inspect the buses close up by hopping on. Not easy as all have stairs but he was determined and enjoyed the experience.
I noticed there was a vast age range of visitors today – from the very young who were just in awe of the number of buses and keen to hop on one for a ride to the city, to the older members of the community who were diligently reading each display’s signage.
We’ve promised BJ a return trip to the Sydney Bus Museum as we had a time constraint today and there was no time for him to go on one of the historic bus trips from the museum to the city. One of the lovely volunteers suggested on our next visit we take the bus to the city, have some morning tea and return on the next scheduled return bus. It sounds like a lovely day out.
The Sydney Bus Museum is a not-for-profit organisation with over 250 members who volunteer their time to preserve the historic buses for us all to enjoy.
The Sydney Bus Museum opens on the 1st and 3rd Sunday of the month. Check the Sydney Bus Museum website for the latest news and any special events.
Australian Companion Card is accepted.
The Sydney Bus Museum is wheelchair accessible. BJ’s manual chair had no problem fitting between the vehicles.
Due to the historic nature of the buses on display they do not have wheelchair access. You need to have some mobility to get into the buses and to do the Historic Bus tours to the city in the buses.
A stand-alone unisex accessible bathroom is available and accessed via a ramp.
Parking onsite is limited and there are no dedicated accessible parking bays. I suggest parking in Williams Street (off Norton) as there is accessible parking and it is only a short wheel or walk to the museum.
There is no café on site but Norton Street is just down the street.
Group bookings can be made.