Accommodation Feature – Tamarind Gardens, Almaden

Tamarind Gardens Tourist Park

Tamarind Gardens Tourist Park

From time to time, we’ll do a feature post on all the accommodation that you can chose from when deciding what Savannahlander package to take up. We will kick off the series with the Tamarind Gardens  Tourist Park in Almaden,  which has recently had a range of improvements made to it. In fact we are so impressed, we are using it as standard accommodation on two of our standard packages – The First Class train buff, and the Economy train buff Packages. Oh, and if anyone can come up with a better name for these packages, please let us know in the comments.

Almaden is the terminus station for the first day of travel.  Many of the passengers continue by a small bus to Chillagoe for their overnight accommodation, 34 km away.  The main attraction of Chillagoe is the historic smelter site, and the Chillagoe Caves. The caves form part of a tour on some of the highter level packages. However, for those just doing the trip for the rail experience, staying at Almaden has the benefit of the savings in the cost of the bus transfer, and a slightly later start to the day on Thursday, so therefore more sleep!

Tamarind Gardens is actually the old Alamden State school, which the state government closed down a few years back, just a couple of months short of its 100th Birthday.  This is from the days when Almaden was a bigger place than it is now.

Basic Facilities

There is a camping and caravan area in the park, and a new camp kitchen and dining area.  There is also the budget rooms which are in one of the old school buildings. There are four of these rooms configured as two twin rooms and two double rooms. Toilets and showers are shared facility type, as for the caravan park. People booking onto the economy train buffs package stay in these rooms, although they may choose to upgrade to the newer rooms described further below.

There is also a common dining room upstairs in the main school building, and a new swimming pool.

Safari Tents

There are four safari tents on site. These are full height structures mounted on elevated floors, and each can sleep four people. There is a double bed and a fold out sofa bed in each. These are used on request, or offered as an ‘overflow’ option if the normal package accommodation is booked out. Groups find these handy for accommodation on their tours.

A long shot of the tents, with the new pool in the foreground

A long shot of the tents, with the new pool in the foreground

The Pool in the above photo was installed in the recent upgrade of the park.

A closer picture of the safari tents

A closer picture of the safari tents

The interior of the Safari Tents

The interior of the Safari Tents

The Cottage

This has been recently upgraded and modernised. It features one double room, and one twin room, with a shared self contained kitchen and dining area. There is also a shower and toilet in the cottage. The Cottage is where we place the first class train buffs passengers.

Common Kitchen and dining area, looking through to the double room in the cottage

Common Kitchen and dining area, looking through to the double room in the cottage

common bathroom in the cottage

Twin room, in the Cottage

Twin room, in the Cottage

The Guest House

The guest house is off the main site of Tamarind Gardens, but is closer to the Pub and Station. It is also very well appointed.  It features a large common loung, with TV, kitchen and dining area, with two double rooms and two twin rooms. Attached to the cottage is its own toilet and shower block.

Lounge area, with dining area in foreground

Lounge area, with dining area in foreground

One of the double rooms in the Guest House

One of the double rooms in the Guest House

The bathroom area of the guest house

The bathroom area of the guest house