Grand Circle Rail Cruise

Travel with Steam Incorporated on this special pre-Christmas rail excursion for an easy and relaxing outing.

Sunday 5 December 2021

Travel with Steam Incorporated on this circular excursion for an easy and relaxing outing. Travelling over one of Wellington’s best kept secrets, the Grand Circle route, we will circumnavigate the Tararua Ranges in a counter clock wise direction. The train will depart from Paekakariki heading to Wellington, then through the Hutt Valley and Wairarapa to Palmerston North before heading south to the Kapiti Coast and back to Wellington. During the journey we will pass through The South Wairarapa, travel the normally freight only rails between Masterton and Palmerston North plus travel through the spectacular Manawatu Gorge to Palmerston North. On arrival back the train will terminate at Wellington. For passengers boarding at stations other than Paekakariki and Wellington you will have to transfer to a Metlink service to complete your journey home. Our fare does not include travel on Metlink services. Hauled by our restored diesel locomotives the train will comprise our fleet of classic red “steel” cars. The train will include a buffet counter selling sandwiches, drinks and snacks, and a souvenir counter for all sorts of railway and steam memorabilia. You are welcome to bring your own food on the train. An option on arriving at Masterton could be to depart the train for a short bus journey to the Mauriceville Country Fair. You will re-join the train a couple of hours later. We intend making a stop adjacent to the Wingate Lane Restaurant at Opaki just north of Masterton for a refreshment stop. This is a rail side stop (no platform) with a five-minute stroll through an adjacent paddock to the restaurant. Lunch must be pre-booked with limited places Or you can picnic in the paddock if you wish to bring your own food. We will make several other stops during the day just in case you need a leg stretch.

You can board the train at Paekakariki, Porirua, Wellington, Petone, Waterloo and Upper Hutt.

Pizza Platter Lunch Option $38 / person (Limited Nos):
At the Wingate Lane Restaurant at Opaki enjoy a selection of their own pizzas with side salads.
Mauriceville Fair $10 / person Alight at Masterton. Includes bus transfers from train and entry to the fair.

Adult train fare ex Paekakariki or Wellington: $170, Child $99.

 Grand Circle Rail Cruise Rimutaka Tunnel

Book this adventure now!

Book online (external link) at or call us on 0800 783 264.

Get the full Grand Circle Rail Cruise timetable, conditions of travel and manual booking form.

Download a booking form. [PDF, 175 KB]

Related information


Grand Circle Rail Cruise - See photos of past runs of the Grand Circle Rail Cruise. This excursion train circles the Tararuas in early December.

Frequently Asked Questions - Answers to some common questions from our travellers.