Spirit of Progress inaugural season 2020 March April first 33 years

Cruise Express

Australian owned and operated

Spirit of Progress

Departs 18 March 2021 - 2 days

from $990* pp twin | $1,090* solo

On 17 November 1937, at Spencer Street Station in Melbourne, Victorian Premier Albert Dunstan took a special gold key and opened the door of a brand new world-class train – the ‘Spirit of Progress’. Launched in a blaze of publicity the all steel train ushered in unheard of levels of comfort on the express run from Melbourne to Albury. Featuring air-conditioned carriages with beautiful wood veneers, a dining car and a special observation or Parlor Car, the train ran the route to the border for 25 years.

In April 1962 the NSW standard gauge line was extended into Victoria which allowed the Spirit of Progress to travel all the way from Melbourne to Sydney. Running in tandem with the then brand new ‘Southern Aurora’, the train ran nightly in each direction. By the mid 1980’s, with the development of better roads and cheaper airfares, the overnight express trains had become obsolete. The ‘Spirit’ and the ‘Aurora’ ran their last runs in August 1986. The Spirit of Progress never ran in NSW again.

34 years later you now have the chance to join the Spirit of Progress on her historic inaugural return to Sydney. Departing Melbourne’s Southern Cross station you will settle back in one of the original compartment seating cars. You might also like to visit the Parlor Car for a drink with friends as the countryside rolls by on the way to your overnight in Albury.

The next day you will be part of history as the Spirit of Progress leaves Albury for Sydney for the first time in decades. Our first stop is Junee for lunch at the historic Railway Station Café, before a short break in Goulburn later in the day. The pinnacle of the journey will be when your train makes its historic arrival at Sydney Terminal mid evening.


Inaugural departure

Be part of history

  • Daylight journey from Melbourne’s Southern Cross Station to Albury aboard the ‘Spirit of Progress’
  • Welcome aboard sparkling wine
  • Afternoon refreshments
  • 1 night Albury accommodation at the ATURA (or similar) with breakfast
  • Welcome drinks at your hotel
  • Return coach transfers from station to hotel in Albury and return
  • Inaugural daylight service from Albury to Sydney Terminal aboard the ‘Spirit of Progress’
  • Lunch at the Junee Railway Station Café
  • Light dinner served aboard the train
  • Kiosk and bar available onboard selling beverages and light snacks
  • Complimentary tea, coffee and water throughout your rail journey
  • Generous luggage allowance


from $990* pp twin

Compartment seating – up to 6 guests per compartment
Twin / Double room at the ATURA Albury

from $1,090* solo

Compartment seating – up to 6 guests per compartment
Single room at the ATURA Albury

Itinerary and brochure

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Terms and conditions

Important information - please read carefully

Call 1300 766 537 - Nationwide or complete the form below

Spirit of Progress

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*A deposit of $250.00 per person is required at time of booking. Final payment is due by Friday 31 January 2021. Fares may not combinable with other promotions, are capacity-controlled, subject to availability and may be withdrawn or changed at any time without notice. All offers are subject to availability. Offer is not transferable, not redeemable for cash and may not be combinable with other select offers or other onboard credits. All fares are subject to the terms and conditions as set out by Cruise Express which are located by link above. All fares and inclusions may be withdrawn at any time. Cruise Express reserves the right to correct any errors or omissions, and to cancel any product or service offered in the event of such error or omission. We strongly recommend you take out travel insurance at the time of paying your deposit.

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