Victoria Falls Train Safari

Experience a luxury train safari in Africa as you journey through South Africa and visit one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World, Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe.

Duration

9 Days

When

Jan – Jun

Price from

$5,440

Trip Highlights

big game
Big game
walking safari
Walking safaris
cities
City sightseeing
game drives (1)
Game drives

About this trip

Make your way through the north of South Africa and journey onwards to one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World, Victoria Falls, on our luxury train safari. Your adventure begins in KwaZulu-Natal, at the exclusive Phinda Private Game Reserve. Spend your days traversing the reserve by safari vehicles or on foot to search for members of the Big 5, as well as cheetahs and the incredibly rare black rhino. Next up, enjoy some downtime on the coast of Umhlanga at the iconic Oyster Box Hotel — winner of South Africa’s Leading Hotel 2018 by World Traveler Awards. After a quick flight to Johannesburg, make your way to the Rovos Railway station for the start of your train safari. From the welcome lounge, take a step back to a time of steam trains, classical music and slow travel and experience an era of opulent travel as the train pulls away from the station. Admire the natural surroundings as the train winds its way north towards the Zimbabwean border, crossing over to its final destination – Victoria Falls. After a slow-paced adventure by train, you will step into a destination with abundant activities from helicopter flights over the smoke that thunders to white water rafting down the Zambezi River.

Your day-to-day- breakdown of this trip

Day one

aeroplane

Arrive Johannesburg, South Africa

Check-in Phinda Forest Lodge

Touch down at OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg before meeting your driver for your scheduled transfer to Phinda Game Reserve. You will be flown to the reserve’s private airstrip where you’ll be greeted by your guide who will transfer you to Phinda Forest Lodge, your base for the following 2 nights. This luxury eco-lodge is surrounded by 28,555 hectares of protected KwaZulu-Natal landscapes, ranging from woodlands to coastline. The 16 suites fitted with floor-to-ceiling windows are located in the heart of a rare sand forest, secluded between towering torchwood trees with private decks looking out on one of the most unique ecosystems on earth. The main lodge boasts a forest infinity pool and a spacious seating area with panoramic views over the meadows. After a seamless check-in and some well-earned downtime, embark on your first game drive alongside your expert guide and local tracker through the Phinda Private Game Reserve. The reserve offers rich wildlife viewing and seven distinct habitats. Spot members of the Big 5, cheetahs and the endangered black rhino as you make your way through the bush towards the unspoiled coastline. En route, stop at a scenic spot to watch the sunset over the reserve before returning to the lodge for a lantern-lit dinner under the stars in the traditional African boma.

Where you’ll stay: Phinda Forest Lodge

Phinda Forest Lodge is a luxury eco-lodge is surrounded by 28,555 hectares of protected KwaZulu-Natal landscapes. The 16 suites are located in the heart of a rare sand forest, with private decks looking out on one of the most unique ecosystems on earth.

Experiences:

Home to Africa’s Big 5, traverse Phinda Private Game Reserve in a private 4×4 safari vehicle alongside an expert guide and tracker. Enrout to the lodge from your evening game drive, stop to take in the spectacular views as the sun dips below the horizon.

Continue your trip

Day two

game drives (1)

Phinda Game Reserve

Safari

Expect an early wake-up call from your ranger which will be your cue to your first morning game drive. Why so early you might ask? Predators rise with the sun and are most active in the morning before the heat of the day sets in. Your ranger will brief you on the wildlife expectations for the day over a hot drink and scrumptious breakfast snack before heading out to the reserve in your private 4×4 safari vehicle. Make your way back to the lodge for a breakfast of fresh fruit platters and a selection of hot breakfast dishes served on the open air dining deck. Feeling active? Walk off your breakfast alongside your expert guide and learn about the African bush and its inhabitants, from obscured dung beetles to towering giraffes before lunch. In the afternoon, choose from a variety of activities* available at the lodge, from cultural visits to a nearby Zulu village, scuba and ocean safaris, black rhino tracking on foot or interactive conservation experiences with cheetah, rhino, lion and nyala. In the evening, you can choose to embark on your second game drive for the day or depart on a sunset boat cruise on the Mzinene River to observe the resident wildlife drink from the banks before dinner at the main lodge. From the months of November to January you might also be lucky enough to witness the nesting of sea turtles, who emerge from the Indian Ocean to lay their eggs in the warm sand of Sodwana Bay.

Where you’ll stay: Phinda Forest Lodge

Phinda Forest Lodge is a luxury eco-lodge is surrounded by 28,555 hectares of protected KwaZulu-Natal landscapes. The 16 suites are located in the heart of a rare sand forest, with private decks looking out on one of the most unique ecosystems on earth.

Experiences:

Safari at your own pace alongside your expert guide and learn about the African bush and its inhabitants or traverese the park on foot in search of the elusive black rhino. In the afternoon, enjoy a cultural visits to a nearby Zulu village or embark on a scuba diving safari.

Continue your trip

Day three

4x4

Transfer to Durban

Check-in Oyster Box Hotel

Wake up to the sounds of the rustling forest and make your way to the main lodge for a final breakfast at Phinda Forest Lodge. Your driver will meet you for your transfer to the Oyster Box hotel, a 3 hour coastal drive south. Located on the Umhlanga beachfront, the Oyster Box overlooks the iconic red and white Umhlanga lighthouse and the Indian Ocean. Built in 1947, the hotel boasts 86 elegant rooms and a multitude of dining options from the legendary high tea in the Palm Court to fresh seafood on the Ocean Terrace. After an effortless check-in, spend the afternoon at leisure and enjoy direct access to the beach, reboot at the fitness center or choose from a variety of revitalising treatments at the hotel’s spa. Before dinner, visit the Oyster Bar for a refreshing drink as the sun dips below the Indian Ocean.

Where you’ll stay: Oyster Box Hotel

Located on the Umhlanga beachfront, the Oyster Box overlooks the iconic red and white Umhlanga lighthouse and the Indian Ocean. Built in 1947, the hotel boasts 86 elegant rooms and a multitude of dining options from the legendary high tea in the Palm Court to fresh seafood on the Ocean Terrace.

Experiences:

Enjoy direct access to the beach, reboot at the fitness center or choose from a variety of revitalising treatments at the hotel’s spa. In the afternoon, sample a selection of sweet and savoury pastries, from quiches to cakes, at the legendary high tea in Palm Court.

Continue your trip

Day four

cities

Durban, Umhlanga

City sightseeing

Wake up at your own pace and fill your day with a variety of activities to fit your mood. An extraordinary breakfast buffet will be served in the Ocean Terrace and Palm Court, including hot and cold dishes, oysters and a glass of bubbly. Choose to relax by one of the two hotel pools, or if you’re feeling more active, pull on your walking shoes and take a stroll down the promenade or browse the boutiques at Gateway Mall. In the evening, choose from 11 flavorful curries at the curry buffet served in the Ocean Terrace Restaurant or indulge in a 5-course fine dining experience at the Chef’s Table, located in the busy kitchen as you watch the chefs prepare your food before your eyes. After dinner, unwind at the intimate 24-seater cinema and enjoy one of your favourite films with popcorn in hand.

Where you’ll stay: Oyster Box Hotel

Located on the Umhlanga beachfront, the Oyster Box overlooks the iconic red and white Umhlanga lighthouse and the Indian Ocean. Built in 1947, the hotel boasts 86 elegant rooms and a multitude of dining options from the legendary high tea in the Palm Court to fresh seafood on the Ocean Terrace.

Experiences:

Choose to relax by one of the hotel pools, or if you’re feeling more active, take a stroll down the promenade or browse the boutiques at Gateway Mall. In the evening, indulge in a selection of over 11 succulent curries at the curry buffet, followed by a film at the 24-seater cinema.

Continue your trip

Day five

aeroplane

Transfer to Johannesburg

Rovos Rail Departure

Day 5 marks the start of your train safari. After breakfast and an easy check-out, your driver will meet you to transfer you to King Shaka Airport for your onward journey to Johannesburg. Touch down an hour later to meet your driver who will accompany you to the Rovos Rail Station in Pretoria. Here you will be welcomed with snacks and drinks before boarding the Pride of Africa. As the train departs from the station, make yourself at home in your iconic carriage as the train winds its way north towards the Zimbabwean border. Recapture the atmosphere of a bygone era over a traditional South African lunch served in a charming, Victorian dining car. In the afternoon, make your way to the observation car and enjoy views of the Warmbaths and Nylstroom as the train crosses through the Tropic of Capricorn or alternatively you can entertain yourself with a game of cards.

If you’re craving something sweet, you can enjoy afternoon tea which is served from 16h30 each day. Visit the bar for a glass of champagne before a world-class dinner paired with a selection of South African wines.

Where you’ll stay: Rovos Rail

Recapture the atmosphere of a bygone era aboard the Rovos Rail, a reconditioned locamotive. The train features luxurious suites, an old world dining cart and obeservation cart – the perfect spot to watch the world go by.

Experiences:

Recapture the atmosphere of a bygone era over a traditional high tea served in a charming, Victoria dining car and look out for wildlife from the observation deck as the train snakes through the South African landscapes.

Continue your trip

Day six – seven

game drives (1)

Hwange National Park

Safari

Day 6 and 7 will be spent aboard the Rovos Rail as you travel north to one of the Seven Wonders of the World, Victoria Falls. Wake up at your own pace and make your way to the dining car for a hearty breakfast served between 07h00 and 10h00. As the train snakes its way past the Hwange National Park, admire the diverse landscapes and wildlife on your safari before stopping at The Hide for an exclusive afternoon game drive. This Kalahari region is home to herds of elephant, buffalo and following close behind, lions. Return to the train for dinner in the dining car as the train makes its way to Thompsons Junction for the overnight stop.

Where you’ll stay: Rovos Rail

Recapture the atmosphere of a bygone era aboard the Rovos Rail, a reconditioned locamotive. The train features luxurious suites, an old world dining cart and obeservation cart – the perfect spot to watch the world go by.

Experiences:

As the train snakes its way past the Hwange National Park, admire the diverse landscapes and wildlife on your safari before stopping at The Hide for an exclusive afternoon game drive.

Continue your trip

Day eight

icon-map_black

Arrive Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

Check-in Victoria Falls Hotel

As your trip continues toward the Zambezi River, enjoy one last breakfast aboard the Rovos Rail before arriving at your journey’s end in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe. Your guide will be waiting for you at the station to accompany you to the nearby Victoria Falls Hotel. Perched alongside the Victoria Falls, the 1904, Edwardian-style hotel is located within the Victoria Falls National Park and boast views of the crashing waters and the rising mist. Renowned for impeccable service and luxurious accommodation, the Victoria Falls Hotel is the perfect base for your night in Zimbabwe. In the afternoon, follow the direct footpath to the Falls or if you’re seeking an adrenaline rush, our Adventurists will be happy to assist in booking a number of outdoor activities for you from white-river rafting down the Zambezi to helicopter flips over the ‘the Smoke that Thunders.’ Return to the hotel for a traditional afternoon high tea served on Stanley’s Terrace with spectacular views of the spray from the Falls below. In the evening, enjoy a drink at Stanley’s Bar before dinner at the opulent Livingstone Room.

Where you’ll stay: Victoria Falls Hotel

Perched alongside the Victoria Falls, the 1904, the Edwardian-style Victoria Falls Hotel is located within the Victoria Falls National Park and boast views of the crashing waters and the rising mist.

Experiences:

Follow the direct footpath to the Falls or experience adrenaline-fuelled white-river rafting down the Zambezi and helicopter flips over the ‘the Smoke that Thunders’ followed by enjoy a gentle cruise down the Zambezi River.

Continue your trip

Day nine

aeroplane

Departure

Transfer to Victoria Falls Airport

Day 9 marks the final day of your South Africa and Victoria Falls Train Safari. Wake up to the sound of ‘the Smoke that Thunders’ and order breakfast to your room or visit the Jungle Junction for a breakfast buffet. Your driver will be waiting for you after check-out to transfer you to Victoria Falls Airport for your onward journey home.

Start planning your safari

Our experts are here to help.

barrons

barrons