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Sydney CityRail

brief history ...

150 years CityRail anniversary ticket.
©2006 Gabriel Ditu
CityRail's origins go as far back as 1855 when the first railway in New South Wales was opened between Sydney and Parramatta. The railway formed the basis of the New South Wales railways and was owned by the government.

All services were powered by steam locomotives, though in the 1920s petrol railcars were introduced for minor branch lines with low passenger numbers, both in metropolitan Sydney and rural areas.

CityRail Tangara train.
©2006 Gabriel Ditu
The CityRail system as it exists today is really the result of the vision of John Bradfield. He was involved in the design and construction of Sydney underground railways in the 1920s and 1930s, the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

Electrification came to Sydney's suburbs in 1926 with the first suburban electric service running between Sydney's Central Station and the suburb of Oatley approximately 20 km south of Sydney.

Other lines were quickly electrified soon after. In conjunction with the construction of the Sydney Harbour Bridge which opened in 1932, an additional underground line was constructed, connecting the North Shore line with Central Station via Town Hall and Wynyard. World War II interrupted programs for further electrification, but was re started in 1948. Compiled from Wikipedia Encyclopedia.

about...

CityRail logo
©2006 Gabriel Ditu
I am not going to give you the traditional... CityRail is one of the best in the world, because is not and in fact is very far away from this. Saying that, I think the CityRail is the best option to get around Sydney. The ferries are expensive and limited to the water ways, the buses are very slow, therefore CityRail, love it or hate it, is what you have left.

The CityRail is expensive, but as a tourist, if you use it a lot you get value out of it. I recommend you to buy weekly or if you stay longer, monthly tickets. Ask for the ones that include buses and ferries.

After 8pm the Nightsafe trains operate, this mean that only the carriages nearest the train guard are open to passengers. A blue light indicates the location of the guard. When waiting for trains, walk along the station platforms to the Nightsafe Area, clearly marked on the platform edge. In that area the Nightsafe carriages will stop.

After 0am the trains are replaced by NightRide buses. Timetables contain NightRide routes. You can buy a ticket from the driver.

tourist information ...

How to get there
Look for the CityRail logo to identify the train stations. From any CityRail station you can ask for a free time table which has also a small map of the CityRail network.

Contact details:
Rail Corporation NSW
PO Box K349
Haymarket NSW 1238
Ph: +61 (02) 8202 2000 (switchboard)
Web site: CityRail home page

Other useful links:
Trip Planner. Enter your departure and destination point together with the time you expect to do your trip and the Trip Planner gives you all the details you need to reach your destination.

Hours of Operation:
Approximative between 4AM to midnight. Please check the CityRail web site or the printed time tables.
30 May
1923 - Australia, New Zealand the the United Kingdom sign an agreement to share the administration of former German colony Nauru.

1925 - Millicent Preston-Stanley becomes the first woman member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly.
Australian slang
  • grot dirty, untidy
  • cat's piss, as mean as mean, meagre, uncharitable
  • outback interior of Australia
  • good onya good for you
  • coldie a beer
  • lippy lipstick
  • rotten drunk
  • flog to sell / steal
  • flake shark meat
Online Maps
Sydney A to Z banners
Click on the following link:
Sydney A to Z banners
Sydney CityRail lines
  CityRail Timetables
Suburban Lines
  Airport and East Hills
  South
  Bankstown
  Inner West
  Illawarra
  North Shore
  Western
  Northern
  Cumberland
  Carlingford
  Olympic Park Sprint
Intercity Lines
  Southern Highlands
  South Coast
  Blue Mountains
  Newcastle and Central Coast
Regional Lines
  Hunter Valley

Note:
Please check also the trackwork schedule. If the line is closed, there are buses replacing the train service.