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9 Days Namibia Safari - Swakopmund to Pretoria - Rovos Rail
Etosha National Park
Holoog Siding/Fish River Canyon
Each year this nine-day 3 400-kilometre journey takes the train from the savannahs of the Highveld to the Atlantic Ocean in the west. The Pride of Africa departs from Pretoria for Kimberley, centre of one of the world’s most famous diamond rushes where there is an opportunity to visit the Big Hole and savour the 1870s atmosphere of the mine museum and village. The railway line then traverses the stark vistas of the arid Northern Cape into Namibia at Ariamsvlei. There is an excursion to the Fish River Canyon – second in size to the Grand Canyon and truly a spectacular sight. The train continues across the Kalahari Desert to Namibia’s capital, Windhoek – a lively, cosmopolitan city with a strong German flavour – for a short city tour. Guests then fly to the world-famous Sossusvlei, a stunning pan in the Namib Desert surrounded by enormous red sand dunes. After a night’s stay with desert drives and a bush dinner, guests rejoin the train in Windhoek and continue overnight to Tsumeb. A night is spent at the Mokuti Game Lodge on the eastern edge of the game-rich Etosha National Park. The journey then continues on to Swakopmund, a perfectly preserved 19th-century German Hansa town set between the dunes of the Namib desert and the roaring Atlantic Ocean – an unforgettable end to a remarkable journey.
* Please note that due to possible rail maintenance, this itinerary could be altered. Please email email@example.com for latest updates.
HIGHLIGHTS: •Kimberley Big Hole and Diamond Mine Museum •Karoo •Kalahari Desert •Upington •Fish River Canyon •Keetmanshoop •Windhoek, capital of Namibia •Sossusvlei – largest sand dunes •Desert dinner and bush drive •Etosha National Park and game lodge •Etosha Pan •Namib Desert •Swakopmund
*Departure dates are specific and excursions may be changed according to schedule achieved. Please check schedule with firstname.lastname@example.org or visit RATES & DATES on www.rovos.com
Day 1 10h00: Depart Swakopmund.
Day 2 10h40: Arrive Tsumeb. Transfer to Mokuti Lodge and Etosha National Park for game drive and overnight.
Day 3 Morning game drive in the Etosha National Park. 13h00: Return to train. Depart Tsumeb for Windhoek.
Day 4 08h00: Arrive in Windhoek for city tour. 11h00: Depart in light aircraft for 1-hour flight to Sossusvlei for lunch, desert drive, bush dinner and overnight.
Day 5 06h00: Sossusvlei excursion with breakfast in vlei. 12h00: Depart Sossusvlei for 1-hour flight to Windhoek. 14h00: The train departs Windhoek.
Day 6 08h00: Walking tour of Keetmanshoop. 15h00: Arrive at Holoog Siding. Visit to the Fish River Canyon. 19h30: Dinner on the train as it heads for the border.
Day 7 01h00: Arrive in Ariumsvlei for border formalities. 08h00: Two-hour walking tour in Upington.
Day 8 14h30: Arrive Kimberley. Tour Big Hole and Diamond Museum. 16h00: Depart Kimberley for Pretoria.
Day 9 12h00: Arrive at Rovos Rail Station in Capital Park, Pretoria.
Inclusions & Exclusions
RACK RATE ONE WAY: per person sharing includes accommodation, meals and excursions during the journey, as well as alcoholic beverages whilst on board the train. Single Supplement +50% on all suites.
RATE INCLUDES • Three meals daily and all alcoholic and other beverages • Excursions accompanied by a qualified tour guide • Entrance fees to places of interest • 24-hour full room service and bar facilities • Government tax • Limited laundry service
NOT INCLUDED: Staff gratuities and off-train beverages
INCLUDED IN OFF-TRAIN ACCOMMODATION ON ANNUAL JOURNEYS • Accommodation • Meals taken at the game reserves, hotels or resorts
NOT INCLUDED IN OFF-TRAIN ACCOMMODATION ON ANNUAL JOURNEYS • Off-train beverages • Off-train laundry • Telephone calls • Memorabilia purchases
PRICES We will do our utmost to keep to the prices published. If however, increases are forced on us we reserve the right, prior to confirmation, to amend the tour price.
Booking Upon receipt of a completed Reservation Form, we will – subject to availability – confirm your place on the selected tour. Upon receipt of a 25% deposit by you or your travel agent, your reservation is confirmed and accepted by us. Cancellation Insurance Cancellation insurance is compulsory as our terms and conditions will be strictly adhered to and cancellation fees, where applicable, will not be waived. We offer insurance to South African residents. For international guests we suggest you contact your local travel agent or credit card service provider for assistance. Please bring a copy of your travel insurance policy stating clearly the company, policy number and 24-hour medical emergency telephone number. Scheduling Times, Routes and Excursions We cannot be held liable for any delays due to trains not running to schedule. Off-train excursions cannot be guaranteed and will only be undertaken if time and circumstances permit. Departure and arrival times are approximate and cannot be guaranteed. We reserve the right to alter our routing at any time between departure and arrival points. Passports & Visas The onus is upon the client to ensure that passports and visas, as may be required, are valid. We travel through South Africa, Swaziland, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Zambia, Tanzania, Uganda, the Sudan and Egypt on the various trips. Passengers travelling to Zimbabwe, Zambia and Tanzania can have their visas taken care of by Rovos Rail given that full passport information is provided on the booking form. Only single entry visas can be issued on the train. Required application forms will be provided. Please note that only cash US Dollars are accepted for payment at ports of entry. Please check with the relevant embassies or consulates in good time. Current rates for single entry visas are: Zimbabwe - US$30pp (UK & Canada pay $55pp); Zambia - US$50pp; Tanzania - US$50pp (USA pay US$100). Health - There is a basic First Aid Kit on board. There is an on-board doctor on our Dar es Salaam and Cape to Cairo journeys. Please ensure you have filled out the Health Requirements Form for these journeys. - Anti-malarial precautions are recommended. Malaria areas include Swaziland, Kruger Park, Northern Botswana, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Tanzania. - Although all countries travelled through do not require Yellow Fever vaccinations, countries guests return to after the trip often require them. Recommended immunisations (not required): Hepatitis A, Polio, Tetanus, Cholera (low risk). - Please consult your travel clinic. THE TRAVEL DOCTOR AFRICA 0861 300 911 local or +27 11 214 9030 international. Currency - South Africa – Rands only. We accept all major credit cards on the train. - Outside of South Africa – Any off-train expenses or excursions booked while on the train are to be paid with US Dollars. Hotels and major dealers accept credit cards except in Sudan. - Ensure all US$ are printed after the year 2000 or they will not be accepted. Low denominations recommended for shopping/gratuities and larger denominations for exchanging money to local currency (especially in Tanzania) as you get a better rate. The Gift Shop might exchange money if currency is available – it is not normally catered for. Gratuities Gratuities for the staff are at your discretion. If you wish to show your appreciation in this manner, there is a suitably marked envelope in your suite that you can hand directly to the Train Manager who will distribute any amounts on a pro-rata basis amongst the staff on board. An amount of between US$10 and US$20 per person is suggested. Children Please be sensitive to the adult nature and atmosphere of the train by keeping your children respectful and quiet. Long journeys are not recommended for under 13s. There are no child-minding facilities or activities for children on board. Locomotion Use of steam has become increasingly difficult over the past years as more and more water and coaling facilities have been scrapped. Where facilities no longer exist, diesel or electric locomotives will be used. The Track The track over which we travel is inconsistently maintained. If you wake at night imagining the train is travelling at high speed, be assured it is the state of the track below that is creating that impression. We restrict the train to 60km/h and over the bad sections reduce speed to as little as 20km/h. If you find it noisy, earplugs are available. Cuisine Meals are served in one sitting only in the charming Victorian atmosphere of the dining cars and are complemented by a selection of fine South African wines. Breakfast is between 07h00 and 10h00, lunch at 13h00 and a formal dinner at 19h30. All meals are served at these times unless otherwise stated in the timetable. A gong heralds lunch and dinner. Dietary Requirements We will do our best to cater for dietary requirements (vegetarians, vegans, diabetics etc.) provided a detailed request has been made on the Reservation Form. If a special request has not been made, the chefs will endeavour to prepare suitable meals with the ingredients available on board. We regret that we are unable to provide meals requiring strict religious observance in the preparation. Dress For days on the train dress is smart casual. Evening attire is more formal – for the gentlemen a jacket and tie is a minimum requirement while for ladies we suggest cocktail/evening dresses or suits. Please include warm clothing for cold mornings and evenings. With regard to off-train excursions, we strongly recommend comfortable walking shoes, suntan lotion and hats as well as warm clothing for the game drives, which are on open vehicles and can get very cold. Mobile Devices and Internet In maintaining the spirit of travel of a bygone era, there are no radios or television sets on board and the use of mobile phones and laptops are confined to the privacy of your suites only. The reception is poor while the train is moving. It is advised to contact your service provider to ensure the correct settings for network services are activated. Internet is available at our Cape Town Lounge, Rovos Rail Station, Tau Game Lodge and Victoria Falls Hotel. Smoking On board the train, smoking is only allowed in the privacy of your suite and in the Club Lounge. Please note on the Reservation Form provided if you are smoking or non-smoking so that the appropriate room might be requested at the hotels. Please be mindful that the train is generally made up of wood. Please do not throw flammable items such as cigarette or cigar butts off the train as bush fires in Africa are a constant and dangerous hazard. Laundry There is a limited laundry service on board comprising household washers, dryers and steam irons. The turnaround is 48 hours so we are not able to handle a week’s worth of washing. Please note that while we are providing a complimentary service we cannot be held responsible for items that may be damaged or lost in the process. There are no dry-cleaning facilities en route or on board the train. Gift Shop There is a small gift shop on board the train and at our station premises in Pretoria. Due to the varying exchange rates, the use of credit cards is preferred. The host/ess on duty has a basic First Aid Kit and personal essentials (toothbrushes, razors, earplugs etc.). He/she will also fulfil any administrative requirements and check your onward arrangements. Stamps are available for sale and postcards may be posted in the post box at the entrance to the Observation Car or Rovos Rail Station. Special Occasions We would like to celebrate your special occasion with you. Upon boarding the train, please advise the Train Manager of any birthday, anniversary or other event. Books, Magazines and Games There are board games, playing cards, a card table (dependent), books and magazines available for your use in the Lounge and Observation Cars whilst on board the train. Electrical Current and Adaptors There are 220V AC 50Hz, 3-point round-pronged wall plugs. There are 110V/220V 2-pin plugs for shavers. International adaptors are also available on board. Safes An electronic safe is provided in the cupboard in each suite. Telephone There is an internal telephone system on board. Numbers are listed on the provided Guest List. Temperature All public cars are fitted with gas-filled air-conditioning systems. Each suite has an individual air-conditioner with individual temperature controls that can also be set to heat mode. Fresh-air intake is solved by opening a window. Windows should be closed while operating the air-conditioning unit. Electric under-blankets are fitted on the bed.
SCHEDULING TIMES & ROUTES We cannot be held liable for any delays due to trains not running to schedule. Excursions cannot be guaranteed and will only be undertaken if time and circumstances permit. Departure and arrival times are approximate and cannot be guaranteed. We reserve the right to alter our routing any time between departure and arrival points.
CHANGES Rovos Rail reserves the right to amend the tour price at any time prior to written confirmation of the reservation. Rovos Rail further reserves the right to cancel or amend any sightseeing excursions or the tour departure dates provided they can offer the passenger alternative sightseeing excursions or departure dates. Rovos Rail is not responsible for any delay or changes in tour arrangements that may be caused by natural or other factors beyond the control of Rovos Rail. There will be no refunds for any part of the tour that might be missed due to personal reasons.
PASSPORTS & VISAS It is upon the client to ensure passports and visas, as may be required, are valid prior to departure.
HEALTH Anti-malarial and Yellow Fever precautions may be required in the countries that are being visited and should be taken as may be prescribed.
PHOTOGRAPHY Rovos Rail reserves the right without notice to make use of any photography/film taken by our staff on the tour for general publicity purposes without payment or permission.
MAXIMUM TRAIN CAPACITY Classic 1: 39 suites • Classic 2: 39 suites • Edwardian: 23 suites. We reserve the right to increase or decrease accommodation capacity as circumstances may require.