The Pride of Africa – Cape Town to Victoria Falls
Prices starting from £3,195 per person
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Re-live the enchantment of a bygone era of rail travel, on a journey of ultimate luxury through incredible African scenery aboard the Pride of Africa. Step aboard the classically remodelled, wood-panelled coaches and enjoy fine cuisine in five-star luxury as you embark on the journey of a lifetime through the spectacular mountain ranges and scenic winelands of the Cape to the haunting barren landscapes of the Great Karoo. Your unique odyssey continues northwards past Johannesburg and the goldfields of the Witwatersrand before travelling west alongside the Magaliesberg Mountains, across Botswana and the Tropic of Capricorn, through the Kalahari Desert, onto Zimbabwe’s Hwange National Park and finally the awe-inspiring Victoria Falls on the mighty Zambezi.
The Rovos Rail Pride of Africa features wonderfully appointed carriages that can carry a maximum of 72 passengers in 36 superbly appointed suites.
9 night / 10 day holiday, including a 2 night stay in Cape Town, 2 nights on board the Rovos Rail Pride of Africa from Cape Town to Pretoria, an overnight stay in Pretoria, 3 nights on board the Rovos Rail Pride of Africa from Pretoria to Victoria Falls and an overnight stay in Victoria Falls. Hotels offered on a bed and breakfast basis, with all meals, excursions and beverages, incl. alcohol included on your rail journeys, plus transfers between the airports, stations and your accommodation throughout your trip from £3,195 per person (based on 2 people travelling together and staying in a Pullman suite on board the train). The same journey for 2 people in a Deluxe suite is from £4,595 per person.
Day 1 – Arrival in Cape Town
Your holiday begins as you arrive into Cape Town International Airport. As you exit the airport your taxi driver will meet you and transfer you to your hotel for your 2 night stay, the luxurious and highly rated Table Bay Hotel (5 star), ideally situated at the V&A Waterfront. You might like to spend the afternoon relaxing at the hotel or start by discovering this fascinating city.
Day 2 – Free time in Cape Town
The oldest city in South Africa, Cape Town has a rich heritage spanning over 300 years. It is set between contrasting landscapes, in one direction enjoying views of Table Mountain and in the other enjoying views across Table Bay to Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela was famously imprisoned. Cape Town boasts many natural wonders including magnificent beaches, wildlife and unique flora, which is gracefully showcased by the city’s Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens. Aside from the natural attractions, Cape Town holds a captivating history which can be discovered in its many museums.
Day 3 – Welcome aboard Rovos Rail’s Pride of Africa Cape Town to Victoria Falls
Today heralds the start of your journey aboard Rovos Rail’s ‘Pride of Africa’. This morning after breakfast you will be met by your taxi transfer to whisk you across to Cape Town station. On arrival at Platform 23 you will be greeted by the Rovos Rail Pride of Africa staff and shown to your private suite on board the glistening cream and green carriages of the Pride of Africa train.
Once you have settled in you may like to join the fellow travellers in the lounge or observation car for your grand departure. Lunch is then served on-board before the train begins the ascent through the Hex River Valley to Worcester and onwards to Touws River, reaching a height of 959m. From the comfort of your glass panelled observation car, gaze out across the vast expanse of grape-producing farms, which accounts for 25% of South Africa’s national wine production.
The train continues through numerous tunnels along the pass as you relax with a cup of tea or coffee in the lounge car. Arriving into Matjiesfontein, you disembark and have time to discover the history of this charming village with its station museum and assortment of historic cars and railway carriages.
This evening you enjoy dinner on board before the overnight journey to Kimberley via the Great Karoo.
Day 4 – Kimberley – Coach Tour of Kimberley, Diamond Mine Museum and the Big Hole
Today you awake to the rugged South African landscape as you enjoy breakfast in the elegant dining car. On arrival into Kimberley you leave the train for a guided coach tour of the fascinating city, largely a feature of the diamond rush of the 1870s. Your tour includes visits to two of the city’s most renowned attractions, the Diamond Mine Museum and the monumental ‘Big Hole’ – a huge man-made excavation up to 214 metres deep.
Continuing your journey from Kimberley aboard the Pride of Africa, you pass Kamfers Dam, a wetland which is home to approximately 23,000 Lesser Flamingos. Relax in the lounge or observation car with afternoon tea, before dinner this evening as the Pride of Africa train whisks you north-west through South Africa to Klerksdorp.
Day 5 – Pretoria
Breakfast is served in the Pride of Africa’s dining car this morning as you journey through the goldfields of the Witwatersrand via Krugersdorp, Germiston and Johannesburg, before arriving into the glorious colonial-style Rovos Rail Station in Pretoria.
Here you are transferred through Pretoria to your hotel for the night at either the Court Classique Suite Hotel (4 star) or the Protea Hotel Fire & Ice! Menlyn (4 star), both highly-rated and perfectly situated to explore the city.
Pretoria, ideally set in the foothills of the Magaliesberg mountains, comprises a mixture of architecture from a colonial, art deco and South African-style. Some of the most notable attractions include the Union Buildings – the official seat of the national government, the Voortrekker Monument – a majestic column of granite to commemorate both the Pioneer history of South Africa and history of the Afrikaner and Mahlamba Ndlopfu – the presidential house. Alternatively, you might like to seek sanctuary in either the city’s National Zoological Gardens or Botanical Gardens.
Day 6 – Re-join the Pride of Africa – Journey through the goldfields and Witwatersrand
After breakfast at the hotel, you are transferred back to Rovos Rail Station to continue your journey south aboard the Pride of Africa, through Witwatersrand, famous for the Witwatersrand Gold Rush of 1886 which led to the establishment of Johannesburg. Lunch is served in the dining car as the train traverses the Magaliesberg Mountains, synonymous with South Africa’s tobacco and cotton growing industry and most famous for the Bushveld Igneous Complex, a large layered igneous intrusion containing the world’s largest reserve of platinum group metals.
Tea is served in the lounge or observation cars this evening, before dinner in the dining car, as the Pride of Africa train continues its journey west to Mafeking, located just south of the border with Botswana and onwards for your overnight journey.
Day 7 – Journey aboard the Pride of Africa through Botswana via Gaborone, crossing the Tropic of Capricorn and onto Mpopoma
Savour the unique experience of traversing two countries and crossing the Tropic of Capricorn today in the most elegant manner. After you have enjoyed breakfast, relax at leisure as you admire the passing scenery of Botswana’s Kalahari Desert, the bustling metropolis of Gaborone (the capital of Botswana) and Francistown en route to the border with Zimbabwe. Lunch, afternoon tea and dinner will all be served on board before your overnight stay on the train in Mpopoma, near Bulawayo.
Day 8 – Journey through Zimbabwe, via Bulawayo towards Zambezi River – game drive at The Hide in Hwange National Park
After breakfast the Pride of Africa train continues Northeast to Zimbabwe’s second largest city, Bulawayo, then onwards to the Zambezi River, known for its abundance of wildlife and the awe inspiring Victoria Falls. After lunch the journey continues along the 114km stretch of straight railway line between Gwaai and Dete. In the afternoon, disembarks from the train at Kennedy Siding where you are treated to a game drive in Hwange National Park, soaking up the sights and sounds of Zimbabwe’s largest game reserve. Dinner is served this evening in the dining car before settling in for a night on board the train.
Day 9 – Victoria Falls
This morning after breakfast, the train travels onwards to one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the world, the incredible Victoria Falls. The scale of Victoria Falls needs to be seen to be believed and they are guaranteed to create memories you will never forget.
Known by the Kololo tribe living in the area in the 1800s as ‘Mosi-oa-Tunya’ – ‘The Smoke that Thunders’, Victoria Falls is one of the world’s most significant topographical features. Boasting a width of nearly two kilometres, in excess of 500 million cubic metres of water per minute plunge over its edges. Columns of spray can be witnessed several kilometres away as water falls dramatically into a gorge over one hundred metres below, creating an awe inspiring sight.
This evening reminisce over some of the highlights of your holiday as you are transferred to your hotel for the night, the stylish Victoria Falls Hotel (4 star).
Day 10 – Return home
Savour your final morning in Africa and enjoy a leisurely breakfast before your transfer takes you to Livingstone Airport for the connecting flight back home.
Route – Cape Town to Pretoria
Route – Pretoria to Victoria Falls
Your Hotel train
Luxuriously furnished with period Edwardian features each of the 36 elegant and air conditioned suites sleep two people in either twin or spacious double beds. The suites range in size between 7, 10 and 16 square metres for a Pullman, Deluxe or Royal Suite respectively. Each of the suites feature a desk, personal safe and ample cupboard space with all suites offering modern en-suite facilities such as hot shower, hairdryer and shaver plug. For added luxury, the Royal Suite bathrooms also feature a Victorian bath.