It’s full steam ahead for the 2023 Thirlmere Festival of Steam on 18 and 19 March, when the village will come alive with steam train rides aboard the State’s rail heritage collection, demonstrations from local artisans, and the colourful annual street parade.

The iconic Huff n’ Puff race is making a long-awaited return to the festival this year, giving runners the opportunity to race against the beautifully refurbished 3001 engine.

The festival is once again being delivered by Wollondilly Shire Council and Transport Heritage NSW, operators of the NSW Rail Museum.

“We’re proud to be able to host the State’s premier steam event here in Wollondilly once again. I hope that everyone can get on board to take part in the fun,” Wollondilly Mayor Matt Gould said.

This year will also see an expansion of the Saturday activities, an even bigger Family Carnival at Thirlmere Sportsground, local performers as well as the headline act Chris Sebastian, winner of The Voice 2020.

The NSW Rail Museum will also be open on Saturday with a variety of steam train rides, driver’s cab visits, a steam and vintage park, mini-train rides and more.

Sunday’s program features the street parade including Ingleburn Pipes and Drums, live performances, market stalls as well as steam rides and other activities at the NSW Rail Museum.

“We’ll have at least six historic engines in steam throughout the weekend at the NSW Rail Museum, including Locomotive 3001; a 120-year-old steam locomotive that’s recently been restored by THNSW volunteers and staff,” Transport Heritage NSW CEO Andrew Moritz said.

“In addition to steam train rides, visitors can enjoy cab visits, steam machinery, live steam models and more all weekend at the NSW Rail Museum.”

To find out more about the event and book tickets for the train rides, head to