The Indian Pacific is a weekly experiential tourism passenger train service that runs in Australia's east–west rail corridor between Sydney, on the shore of the Pacific Ocean, and Perth, on the shore of the Indian Ocean – thus, like its counterpart in the north–south corridor, The Ghan, one of the few truly transcontinental trains in the world. It first ran in 1970 after the completion of gauge conversion projects in South Australia and Western Australia, enabling for the first time a cross-continental rail journey that did not have a break of gauge.
|Service type||Transcontinental passenger rail|
|First service||23 February 1970|
|Current operator(s)||Journey Beyond Rail Expeditions|
|Former operator(s)||Department of Railways New South Wales|
South Australian Railways
Western Australian Government Railways
East Perth Terminal
|Distance travelled||4,352 km (2,704.21 mi)|
|Average journey time||70.5-75 hours|
|Line(s) used||Main Western|
Broken Hill-Crystal Brook
|Rolling stock||Commonwealth Railways stainless steel carriage stock|
|Track gauge||1,435 mm (4 ft 8+1⁄2 in) standard gauge|
|Operating speed||115 km/h|
|Average length||774 m (2,539 ft)|
The train has been rated as one of the great rail journeys of the world. Its route includes the world's longest straight stretch of railway track, a 478-kilometre (297 mi) stretch of the Trans-Australian Railway across the Nullarbor Plain.
The service was originally operated jointly by four government railway administrations: the Department of Railways New South Wales, South Australian Railways, Commonwealth Railways and Western Australian Government Railways, until February 1993 when Australian National took full ownership. In 1997, the Indian Pacific was sold to Great Southern Rail and, subsequently, branded as Journey Beyond Rail Expeditions then Journey Beyond during several changes in corporate ownership.
A one-way trip takes between 70.5 and 75 hours, depending on scheduling and daylight saving periods. As of 2022[update], two levels of service were offered, branded as Platinum and Gold. A motorail service conveys passengers' motor vehicles on the train between Adelaide and Perth.