When Rev Wilbert Awdry wrote his first book, The Three Railway Engines, in 1945, he had no idea that his story about trains on the Island of Sodor would go on to captivate generations of children from all over the world.

The Three Railway Engines was the first of 42 books in The Railway Series that inspired the beloved television show that every child (and parent!) now knows as Thomas and Friends.

To celebrate the 75th anniversary of the first book and Thomas’ birthday, Puffing Billy Railway, Australia’s favourite steam train, is giving eight lucky Day Out With Thomas guests a chance to win the ultimate money can’t buy Thomas the Tank Engine experience.

Everyone who purchases a ticket to an upcoming Autumn session of Day Out With Thomas at Puffing Billy will go into the draw to win one of two daily prizes.

The first prize will give the winner a once in a lifetime experience to hop onboard Thomas, meet the driver, have their photo taken, and then enjoy a Thomas themed tea menu surrounded by everyone’s favourite tank engine and his friends (valid for two adults and two children). Second prize is a special Thomas and Friends prize pack valued at $75.

Day out with Thomas takes place at Puffing Billy’s Gembrook Station on 22, 23 and 29 February, and 1, 14, 15, 21 and 22 March 2020.

Guests will enjoy a 35-minute train ride with Thomas and his friends, as well a range of other activities, including:

  • The Imagination Station – play & create with Thomas and his friends,
  • Meet the Fat Controller
  • Watch the engines shunting through the yards
  • Jumping castles
  • Animal nursery
  • Face painting
  • Photos with the Bulgy Bus and
  • Photo opportunities with Thomas and his friends

Puffing Billy Railway Event Manager, Matt Collopy, said the Day Out with Thomas is one of the most popular events on Puffing Billy’s calendar.

“Families can take advantage of a range of free activities before boarding the train for a 35-minute ride through the beautiful Dandenong Ranges,” Matt said.

“Whether it is your child’s first visit to Puffing Billy, or they are returning for this event, the magic of our historic railway and this year’s 75th anniversary makes A Day Out With Thomas even more special. We hope everyone can come and join us for a fun family day out to share the excitement and celebrate Thomas and his friends at Puffing Billy Railway,” he said.

Adult tickets are the same price as a child (aged 4 years and over) – with these all-inclusive tickets only $42.00 per person, $25.00 for toddlers (aged 1-3 years) and free for children under 1 year.

Bookings are essential and must be made online at

View PDF here.