Join our Education officers on Puffing Billy to investigate the characteristics of tourism in the Dandenong ranges. Students will examine the location of the railway, its interconnectedness, and the impact the railway has on people, places, and environments throughout its history. Issues and challenges to tourism in the the local area, and to the railway, will be discussed, alongside the impact of Puffing Billy on the local, regional, and national environments, economies, and cultures.

Through the lens of ethical tourism, students evaluate the effectiveness of measures taken at Puffing Billy Railway to enhance the positive and/or minimise the negative impact of the Railway on the surrounding environment. They investigate the growth of tourism at Puffing Billy and examine management and techniques being used to ensure Puffing Billy is environmentally, socially, culturally, and economically sustainable.

Students will use fieldwork techniques to gain statistical data from multiple information sources including Puffing Billy Railway staff, volunteers, digital images, streamed videos, and presentations. Students can use this information to inform a fieldwork report back at school analysing the impacts of tourism at Puffing Billy.

Lakeside Visitor Centre's Railway Cafe, with accessible walkways throughout the centre.
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During their virtual visit!

Students will have an opportunity to converse with, survey and hear from Puffing Billy Railway staff and volunteers to discuss the impact of tourism at Puffing Billy Railway and the Dandenong Ranges.  Students will research challenges to the railway over time and the importance and historical and financial significance of people and volunteers to the railway. By understanding the characteristics of tourism at the railway students will be able to inform a fieldwork report back at school and use what they have learnt at the railway to brainstorm ways the railway can be sustainable in the future. Immersed in nature throughout their journey, students will think sustainably about the impacts of the railway and future solutions to reduce the environmental impacts of people and technology to biodiversity at the Railway, locally, regionally, and globally.

Students will also be presented statistical data which they will use to investigate the interconnectedness between Puffing Billy Railway, local, domestic, and international tourism.

Curriculum links

Curriculum Resources

Puffing Billy Railway offers a range of pre- and post-excursion curriculum-linked resources to support teaching and learning in the classroom and at home. All resources are based around the topics of Energy/Force/Motion, Past and Present, Design and Technology and Biodiversity.


Enquire about our guided excursions via our online form.
Please contact the Education team for any further questions by emailing or calling 03 9757 0700.