Cape Town, South Africa to Pretoria, South Africa & Pretoria to Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
When they say they roll out the “Red Carpet” they literally do. This journey was pure luxury from the minute we arrived at the Cape Town Station in South Africa until we finished our Journey in Victoria Falls station in Zimbabwe. We traveled for 7 days on the “Pride of Africa” in August 2016. This was the highlight of our 2 1/2 weeks in Southern Africa.
This is actually 2 separate journeys added together. The journey from Cape Town to Pretoria is a 3-day journey and from Pretoria to Victoria Falls is 4-days. About 1/3 of the passengers were on the train for the entire journey. In Pretoria, there is an overnight in a local hotel.
Everyone is very attentive and the check in process is quick and smooth in both Cape Town and Pretoria stations. The train staff greet you at the entrance to the station, provide you with itinerary and personalized luggage tags and invite you to the lounge. In the lounge there are sandwiches, snacks and drinks served. Once everyone is checked in, you are welcomed and provided information on the trip before being taken to the trains. We were fortunate enough to meet Mr. Rovos who personally welcomed us on board.
The trains are old style and Rovos prides itself in maintaining the tradition of old style travel. The is a very different experience than you would have on, for example, the Blue train. Everything is keeping with tradition. There are no televisions, no wi-fi and a strict no electronics outside of your cabin policy.
There are 3 different types of cabins: pullman, deluxe and royal suites. All cabins come equipped with their own washroom with shower facilities, and the royal suites have a bathtub.
At the back of the train is an observation car with inside and outside viewing. There is seating outside for about 9-10 people. Inside there is ample seating. There is a bar in the observation car and seats to socialize or play games.
This is a slow moving and enjoyable sight seeing trip across the country side. We saw gorgeous scenery, animals and even some beautiful sunsets.
The train does make a few stops for sight seeing and sometimes overnighting. On our trip, our highlighted stops were Kimberley and a game drive at the Hyde.
The meals were wonderful. Breakfast, lunch and dinner all served with wine pairings in dining car. Dress for dinner is formal. Most people did adhere to the dress code. Each meal had multiple courses of very delicious and creatively prepared meals which are all cooked in the kitchen car on board. The staff are also very attentive and try to accommodate any dietary requirements.
Overall this was an extremely enjoyable trip. I would highly recommend this as an excellent way to view the country side.