Katoomba Scenic World

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Katoomba Scenic Skyway
Scenic Railway
Katoomba scenic railway prior to upgrade
The lowest section of 45 degree angle track

Katoomba Scenic World is a privately owned tourist attraction located in Katoomba in the Blue Mountains, New South Wales, Australia, about 100 kilometres west of Sydney. Scenic World is home to four attractions, of which the most famous is the Katoomba Scenic Railway. The site also includes the Katoomba Scenic Skyway, the Cableway and Katoomba Scenic Walkway a 2.4 km elevated boardwalk through ancient rainforest. Onsite facilities also include free all day parking, the largest souvenir shop in NSW and several dining outlets.[1]



The Scenic Railway is the steepest cable-driven funicular railway in the world,[2][3][4][5] the steepest incline of 52 degrees[6] contained within a total incline distance of 310 metres (1,020 ft).[1] It was originally constructed for a coal and oil shale mining operation in the Jamison Valley in the 1880s, in order to haul the coal and shale from the valley floor up to the escarpment above. From 1928 to 1945 it carried coal during the week and passengers at weekends. The coal mine was closed in 1945 after which it remained as a tourist attraction. The Scenic Railway was closed on 13 January 2013 (although the Skyway, Cableway, and Walkway remained open) as construction to upgrade both tracks and carriages began. The work was completed and the railway reopened in April 2013.[7]


Built in 1958 the Scenic Skyway is another cable-driven conveyance at Scenic World. It travels across the gorge above the Katoomba Falls, 270 metres (886 ft) above the valley floor. The original Scenic Sky-way was withdrawn on 4 April 2004 after 587,401 crossings and today is used as a picnic shelter. It was replaced by a new cable car in December of the same year. The new Skyway was built by Doppelmayr and CWA Constructions, and features a 72-person cabin with sections of liquid crystal glass that turns a raised section of the floor from translucent to transparent as the ride progresses. In November 2005 a second station on the opposite cliff-face opened, allowing Skyway passengers to disembark and follow bush walking trails to the nearby Echo Point.

Orphan Rocker[edit]

In 1984 Scenic World began building a roller coaster known as the Orphan Rocker, named after the nearby Orphan Rock. This is the first roller coaster to be completely designed and manufactured in Australia. The highlight of this ride is meant to be a swooping banked turn that takes riders within metres of the edge of a 200 m (656 ft) cliff. It has in the past been referred to as a "sitdown suspended" coaster, because although it is a conventional sitdown coaster, the trains can tilt from side to side, like a suspended coaster, giving it its name. It was originally planned as a scenic monorail ride, but it soon evolved into a roller-coaster ride. The roller coaster has never publicly opened due to demands for redevelopment elsewhere onsite.[8] Visitation to Scenic World in the 80s were peaking at more than 1.2 million visitors annually, necessitating additional access into the valley and the idea for Scenic World's 3rd ride - The Cableway (originally Scenicscender) was born. The roller coaster track has been left in place for possible redevelopment in the future.


In 2000 Scenic World installed the Sceniscender, now called Scenic Cableway, 84-passenger cable car from Doppelmayr that passes over a 25-metre-high (82 ft) tower on the edge of the cliff, and then 510 metres (1,673 ft) to the Valley Station in the Jamison Valley 200 m (656 ft) below.[9]

Restaurants and shops[edit]

Scenic World has two food and beverage outlets operating – EATS270 and the Terrace Café.

The former Scenic Revolving Restaurant was renovated and reopened in late 2012 as an eatery. EATS270 includes food outlets with Australian, Italian and light lunch menu options. EATS270 also features a new balcony area with extensive outdoor seating overlooking the Three Sisters and Jamison Valley.

Scenic World food & beverage outlets are not open in the evenings for general dining but can be booked for private functions and corporate events.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Scenic World". Bluemts.com.au. Retrieved 2015-03-10. 
  2. ^ "Katoomba Scenic Railway(Steepest incline railway in the world) - Katoomba, New South Wales - Outdoor Recreation". Facebook. Retrieved 2015-03-10. 
  3. ^ "All Aboard! Katoomba Scenic Railway - Blue Mountains Australia". Infobluemountains.net.au. Retrieved 2015-03-10. 
  4. ^ "The Steepest Railways on Earth". Scribol.com. Retrieved 2015-03-10. 
  5. ^ "Top five funicular railways - Take five - {Columns} - Travel". smh.com.au. Retrieved 2015-03-10. 
  6. ^ "Scenic Railway, Scenic World. Blue Mountains Australia". Scenicworld.com.au. Retrieved 2015-03-10. 
  7. ^ "Scenic Railway Redevelopment FAQs". Scenic World. Retrieved 2015-03-10. 
  8. ^ Sherlock, Emily (29 Jan 2006). "Roller-coaster is going nowhere fast". smh.com.au. Retrieved 29 June 2014. 
  9. ^ Bennett, David (1 November 2001). "Flying the scenic route". New Civil Engineer. Retrieved 15 August 2015. 

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 33°43′43″S 150°18′04″E / 33.7285°S 150.3010°E / -33.7285; 150.3010