The Cockle Train, Goolwa, South Australia

Cockle Train, Goolwa, South Australia

Cockle Train, Goolwa, South Australia

The historic Port Goolwa played a very significant role in the early development of South Australia. When many areas along the River Murray were being settled by farmers there were few ways to get supplies to them. It was just as difficult to get their wool and wheat to the markets.

Cockle Train, Goolwa, South Australia

Cockle Train, Goolwa, South Australia

Port Goolwa was established in the very early years of settlement. Paddlesteamers took supplies up the River Murray to towns and farmers along the river. They then brought back loads of wheat and wool to Goolwa. Although the mouth of the river was just a few kilometres downstream from Goolwa it was generally unsafe for navigation. Their cargo was unloaded at Port Goolwa and transferred by train to Port Elliot where sea going ships carried the goods to other ports in Australia or to the growing European market. Economically this was vital to the growth of the new colony of South Australia. In the 1850s Victoria was in the grip of gold rush fever and South Australia was able to forge ahead supplying the other rapidly growing colonies.

Cockle Train, Goolwa, South Australia

Cockle Train, Goolwa, South Australia

Australia’s first steel railway line was built here from Port Goolwa to Port Elliot a few kilometres to the west. Today this historic line still has steam trains running regularly, but now the cargo is tourists from all over the world. The so-called Cockle Train takes its name from the abundance of the shell-fish cockles found along the beaches near here.

Schedule of services:

The Cockle Train now runs from Goolwa to Port Elliot and on to Victor Harbor. The trains run three times each way every day during Easter, long weekends and during most school holidays. It also operates every Sunday throughout the year.

Link:

 

2 Responses to “The Cockle Train, Goolwa, South Australia”

  1. Mollie says:

    I love to visit Goolwa, memories of my childhood catching the train up there with Mum to stay at the “shack” with Grandpa and Nanna.
    The shack was right on the turn before the train came into the station, we spent hours just standing on the fence waiting for that train and the thrill of it when we saw the smoke coming closer and closer.
    That train trip almost took half the day and school holidays and Christmas was always a treat.
    Thanks for the memories
    Mollie
    http://molliedove.com/molliesnest

  2. Trevor says:

    Hi there Mollie – thanks for visiting and for leaving a comment. Must take a ride on the train someday.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.