Luxury Rail Journey: Cape Town to Dar es Salaam

ToursHoneymoon/RomanticLuxury Rail Journey: Cape Town to Dar es Salaam

15 Days / 14 Nights

Highlights
  • Tour Kimberley’s Big Hole and visit the Diamond Mine Museum
  • Tour of Victoria Falls
  • Zambezi River sunset cruise
  • Chisimba Falls in Zambia
  • Game drive in Selous Game Reserve
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Overview

This grand 15-day train journey travels through South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Tanzania and is one of the most famous in the world. The sojourn begins in Cape Town taking guests to the historic village of Matjiesfontein, the diamond town of Kimberley and the capital city of Pretoria for short tours followed by two nights in the Madikwe Game Reserve OR Kwa Maritane in Pilanesberg Game Reserve . Continue through Botswana into Zimbabwe where guests overnight at the Victoria Falls Hotel.

After crossing the mighty Zambezi River, the train joins the Tazara line in Zambia and continues to Chisimba Falls where guests enjoy a bush walk. The train climbs to the Tanzanian border then descends into the Great Rift Valley negotiating the tunnels, switchbacks and viaducts of the spectacular escarpment. Climbing again, it traverses the Selous Game Reserve – the largest on the continent and a vision of timeless Africa – before the bustling arrival in Dar es Salaam the following day.

Itinerary
Day 1 - Matjiesfontein

Itinerary

11:00 Depart from Platform 23 at Cape Town Station. Guests may freshen up in their suites before joining fellow travellers in the lounge car or observation car at the rear of the train.

13:00 Lunch is served in the dining cars. The train travels towards Worcester in the Hex River Valley.

15:00 The train climbs up the face of the escarpment to Touws River before arriving at the first of four tunnels.

The last tunnel is 13.5 kilometres long with no lighting so guests are to be careful when walking through the train.

16:30 Tea is served in the lounge car and observation car at the rear of the train.

17:45 Disembark at Matjiesfontein for an opportunity to stroll through this historic little village.

19:00 Depart Matjiesfontein.

19:30 Dinner is served in the dining cars. Travel through the Karoo via De Aar towards Kimberley. Dress: Formal

Accommodation

Accommodation onboard the Rovos Rail

Day 2 - Kimberley

Itinerary

07:00 Breakfast is served in the dining cars until 10:00.

12:30 Lunch is served in the dining cars.

14:30 Arrive Kimberley. Disembark for a tour of the city, Diamond Mine Museum and the Big Hole.

17:00 Depart Kimberley. Ten minutes after leaving Kimberley, a shallow lake appears on the left-hand side of the train where, on most occasions, there are spectacular flocks of Lesser Flamingos (approximately 23 000).

19:30 Dinner is served in the dining cars en route to Klerksdorp. Overnight on board. Dress: Formal

Accommodation

Accommodation onboard the Rovos Rail

Day 3 - Pretoria

Itinerary

07:00 Breakfast is served in the dining cars until 09:45. The train travels northeast through the goldfields.

10:00 Arrive at Rovos Rail Station in Pretoria. Enjoy a walking tour of the station and locomotive workshops (weather permitting) followed by lunch on the platform and a city tour of Pretoria at 14:15.

18:00 Depart for Zeerust in the North West Province.

19:30 Dinner is served in the dining cars en route to Zeerust. Dress: Formal

Accommodation

Accommodation onboard the Rovos Rail

Day 4 - Madikwe

Itinerary

Please pack a small overnight bag for the stay in Madikwe. Tog bags have been placed in your suite for your convenience. See Inclusions/Exclusions. Spa facilities available (own account). Payment in ZAR or by credit card only. Times of meals and activities are seasonal and will be reconfirmed on arrival.

07:00 Breakfast is served in the dining cars until 10:00.

11:00 Disembark at Zeerust. Transfer by coach to Madikwe for a two-night stay. Lunch is served upon arrival.

Afternoon tea and game drive (approximately 3 hours).

19:00 Dinner at the lodge. Dress: Casual

Accommodation

Accommodation at the lodge

Day 5 - Madikwe

Itinerary

Early morning game drive (approximately 3 hours).

07:00 Breakfast is served at the lodge until 09:30.

12:30 Lunch at the lodge.

Afternoon tea and game drive (approximately 3 hours).

19:00 Dinner at the lodge. Dress: Casual

Accommodation

Accommodation at the lodge

Day 6 - Madikwe

Itinerary

Early morning game drive (approximately 2 hours).

07:00 Breakfast is served at the lodge until 09:30. Please ensure your bags are ready for collection at

10:00 and proceed to check-out.

10:30 Depart the lodge. Transfer to the train at Gaborone in Botswana. Border formalities will take place en route and guests are required to present themselves to the border officials (luggage may be searched).

13:00 Lunch is served in the dining cars. Depart Gaborone at 13:30.

Please ensure the Train Manager/Gift Shop is in possession of your passport and completed forms.

Victoria Falls: It is a good idea to familiarise yourself with the list of activities available: Tour of Falls; helicopter over Falls; walk with lions; whitewater rafting; bungee-jumping; golf. You may book these excursions yourself at the hotel OR beforehand on the train with the on-board lecturer – today between 16:30-18:00. Cash accepted.

16:30 Tea is served in the lounge car and observation car at the rear of the train.

19:30 Dinner is served in the dining cars en route to Plumtree for border formalities. Dress: Formal

Accommodation

Accommodation onboard the Rovos Rail

Day 7 - At Leisure

Itinerary

Victoria Falls: If you have decided to book activities through the on-board lecturer, please ensure you have done so before lunch. Cash accepted.

Lectures in morning and/or afternoon in the lounge car. Please consult Lecture Sheet for details.

07:00 Breakfast is served in the dining cars until 10:00. The train departs Plumtree.

13:00 Lunch is served in the dining cars.

16:30 Tea is served in the lounge car and observation car at the rear of the train. Pass Gwaai and Dete along one of Africa’s longest stretches of straight railway line – 114 kilometres – and along the eastern edge of the Hwange National Park where occasional sightings of animals can occur.

19:30 Dinner is served in the dining cars en route to Thompson’s Junction. Dress: Formal

Accommodation

Accommodation onboard the Rovos Rail

Day 8 - Victoria Falls

Itinerary

Please pack a small overnight bag for the stay at Victoria Falls Hotel. See Inclusions/Exclusions.

Meals are taken at the Jungle Junction Restaurant. Dinner is at the Livingstone Room. Meals taken in other venues are for your own account. Currency exchange available at hotel (passports not required); there is a business centre and WiFi available throughout. If you are crossing the border into Zambia during your stay, please obtain your passport from the Train Manager/Gift Shop.

07:00 Breakfast is served in the dining cars until 10:00.

12:00 Arrive at the incomparable Victoria Falls. Disembark with overnight bag and walk across to the hotel. Welcome address on the lawn followed by lunch at Jungle Junction. Luggage will be delivered to the rooms.

15:45 Guests to meet in the hotel foyer before departure for the Sunset Cruise on the Zambezi River.

19:30 Dinner at the Livingstone Room, Victoria Falls Hotel. Dress: Smart Casual

Accommodation

Accommodation at the Victoria Falls Hotel

Day 9 - Victoria Falls

Itinerary

Check-out time is normally at 10:00 (to be advised). If you have organised morning activities, please ensure you have checked out. Complimentary luggage storage at reception until afternoon departure. Please call the front desk and they will send a porter to collect your luggage.

06:30 Breakfast is served at the Jungle Junction Restaurant until 10:00. Day at leisure in the Victoria Falls.

13:00 Lunch at Jungle Junction.

15:00 Meet on station platform for departure to Zambia.

16:00 Depart Victoria Falls and cross the bridge to Livingstone. Tea in the lounge car or observation car.

19:30 Dinner is served in the dining cars. Dress: Formal

Please ensure the Train Manager/Gift Shop has your passport for border formalities.

Accommodation

Accommodation onboard the Rovos Rail

Day 10 - Day Spend at Leisure

Itinerary

Lectures in morning and/or afternoon in the lounge car. Please consult Lecture Sheet for details.

07:00 Breakfast is served in the dining cars until 10:00. After breakfast, the train travels across the Kafue railway bridge – a 477-metre long steel girder truss bridge of 13 spans each at 33 metres supported on concrete piers.

Enjoy a day at leisure on the train as it travels through Zambia.

13:00 Lunch is served in the dining cars. The train passes through the country’s capital, Lusaka.

16:30 Tea is served in the lounge car and observation car at the rear of the train.

19:30 Dinner en route to Kapiri Mposhi and the start of the TAZARA railway line. Dress: “African” Theme or Smart Casual

Accommodation

Accommodation onboard the Rovos Rail

Day 11 - Day Spend at Leisure

Itinerary

Lectures in morning and/or afternoon in the lounge car. Please consult Lecture Sheet for details.

07:00 Breakfast is served until 10:00. The train passes through Serenje. Enjoy a day at leisure on the train.

13:00 Lunch is served in the dining cars.

16:30 Tea is served in the lounge car and observation car at the rear of the train.

19:30 Dinner is served in the dining cars en route to Kasama. Dress: Formal

Accommodation

Accommodation onboard the Rovos Rail

Day 12 - Chisimba Falls

Itinerary

06:00 Breakfast is served in the dining cars until departure.

08:00 Disembark the train at Kasama for a morning excursion to Chisimba Falls.

11:00 Depart Kasama. Travel towards the border.

13:00 Lunch is served in the dining cars.

16:30 Tea is served in the lounge car and observation car. The train passes Chozi.

17:40 Arrive in Nakonde for Zambian border formalities. Continue to Tunduma on the Tanzanian border.

19:30 Dinner is served in the dining cars en route to Mbeya. Dress: Formal

Please put your watches forward an hour before retiring for the evening.

Accommodation

Accommodation onboard the Rovos Rail

Day 13 - Makambako (Optional)

Itinerary

Lectures in morning and/or afternoon in the lounge car. Please consult Lecture Sheet for details.

07:00 Breakfast is served in the dining cars until 10:00.

09:00 Arrive at Makambako and enjoy an optional stroll through the town – time permitting.

10:30 Depart and travel towards Mlimba. The train descends into the Rift Valley and through the Udzungwa Mountains as it negotiates the tunnels, switchbacks and viaducts of the escarpment towards the Selous.

13:00 Lunch is served in the dining cars.

16:30 Tea is served in the lounge car and observation car at the rear of the train.

19:30 Dinner is served in the dining cars en route to Kisaki. Dress: Formal

Accommodation

Accommodation onboard the Rovos Rail

Day 14 - Selous Game Reserve

Itinerary

07:00 Continental breakfast is served in the lounge and observation cars until 08.30. The train descends into the highlands and traverses the fertile lands of Tanzania towards Dar es Salaam.

09.30 Brunch is served in the dining cars until 12.00.

12:30 Game visit in the Selous Game Reserve, the largest in Africa at 55 000km² (time permitting).

17:00 Rejoin to the train.

19:30 Dinner is served in the dining cars en route to Gwata. Dress: “1920s” Theme or Smart Casual

Accommodation

Accommodation onboard the Rovos Rail

Day 15 - Dar es Salaam

Itinerary

Please ensure that you have obtained your passport from the Train Manager/Gift Shop.

05:45 Depart Gwata in and travel in an easterly direction towards the coast.

07:00 Breakfast is served in the dining cars until 09:30.

10:00 Arrive at journey’s end in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

Please dress accordingly for game drives: mornings can be cool then warm up considerably; afternoons can be warm then cool down considerably. Warm clothing, hats and sun protection are advised (season dependent). Rain capes are available.

Excursions may be changed according to schedule achieved. Times are approximate and cannot be guaranteed.

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