Take in the 1,600 km (994 mile) route between Pretoria and Cape Town with two nights aboard The Blue Train. Over 31 hours, you pass through mountainous landscapes, sprawling farmland and vine-woven valleys. And, with a live camera feeding TVs in the club car and your suite, you can watch the journey’s scenery unfold in real time.
En route, stop at the historic mining town of Kimberley for a visit to the Kimberley Open Mine Museum. Here, a guided tour sheds light on the region’s 19th-century diamond mining industry, for which South Africa’s blossoming rail network was integral.
The train itself has a relaxed yet convivial atmosphere, accommodating up to 84 guests in 41 Luxury and slightly larger De Luxe suites. Its decor harks back to the rail’s booming 1920s heyday, with burnished wood panelling, plump leather seats and warmly lit lamps on the walls.
By day, your fully carpeted, soundproofed suite is a private compartment you can retreat to, complete with comfortable chairs and complimentary Wi-Fi. Then, as the sun sets, your butler will convert the space into a bedroom complete with a bed draped in crisp cotton sheets and down duvets. Each suite has its own bathroom with a shower or bath.
You’ll sit down to freshly prepared meals in the elegant dining car (or in the privacy of your suite, if preferred), with on-board chefs able to cater to any dietary requirement. After-dinner drinks and Cuban cigars are offered in the Club Car, where you could also enjoy a game of backgammon, cards or chess or unwind with a book from the library.
A traditional afternoon High Tea is served each day in the Lounge Car. And, you can relax in the Observation Car, whose large picture windows allow you to take in views over the surrounding landscape or gaze up at the star-spangled night sky.
Throughout your journey, butlers will be on hand for round-the-clock assistance — each butler serves no more than four suites, so your stay feels highly personal.