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Ultimate Dar Es Salaam, Victoria Falls and The Pride of Africa

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Journey through Africa on one of the world’s most luxurious trains

22 days From £18,690 per person
Operated by our sister company Great Rail Journeys

2024 Tour code: TZG23

About the tour

Explore the magnificent attractions spanning five countries of Africa on this incredible adventure aboard the luxurious, 5-Star Pride of Africa. Journey across lush wildernesses and dusty desert plains, taking in natural wonders and rare creatures, and spend time in Africa's cosmopolitan cities.

Highlights

What’s included

Itinerary

Day 1 - London to Dar Es Salaam

Our holiday begins with a flight from London Heathrow. Flying via Dubai, we make our way to Dar es Salaam. Tanzania's exhilarating former capital, 'Dar es Salaam' translates to "home of peace". Once a small fishing village, it's now a bustling hive of culture and entertainment, and boasts the UNESCO-listed Selous Game Reserve on its doorstep.

Day 2 - Dar Es Salaam

Our flight lands in Dar es Salaam and we head out to get to know the city, Tanzania's largest and its cultural heart. With free time, you could pay a visit to a local craft market, enjoying time to peruse the colourful stalls, filled with enticing traditional goods ranging from carved ornaments to locally made clothes and accessories. We enjoy dinner at our hotel and settle down for the evening before our unique adventure on board the Pride of Africa begins.

Day 3 - The Pride of Africa and Selous Game Reserve

Today we begin our journey on the Pride of Africa, starting our epic rail journey across the continent that takes in five unique countries. After settling in on the luxurious train, we speed away from Dar es Salaam and make our way through Tanzania. Our journey takes us across the wild plains of the Selous Game Reserve by rail. The park offers a vision of timeless Africa; there are almost no roads and most visitors are flown in. Our trip through the plains by rail is a rare treat indeed, as we try to spot elephants, hippos and buffalo from the comfortable carriages.

Day 4 - Selous Game Reserve

We head out into the wild landscapes of the Selous Game Reserve on a safari drive. Selous Game Reserve is Africa's largest park and has been awarded UNESCO World Heritage status thanks to its incredible indigenous wildlife. On our game drive we hope to spot some of the diverse wildlife that the park, and Africa as a whole, is famous for. We return to the train and continue through the striking Udzungwa Mountains to Mlimba, where we stay for the night.

Day 5 - Makambako

We arrive in Makambako, a traditional Tanzanian town that's overlooked by the country's Southern Highlands. You have some free time to explore the town; one option is to check out the town's large traditional clothes market. Back on the board the Pride of Africa, we traverse the vast and stark landscapes of the Rift Valley on the way to the town of Tunduma, nestled on the border between Tanzania and Zambia. We spend the night here.

Day 6 - Mbeya Mountains, Chishimba Falls and Pride of Africa

Continuing our journey, we descend through the striking valleys of the Mbeya Mountains before crossing over into neighbouring Zambia. We disembark at Kasama for a visit to the stunning Chishimba Falls. Here, the Luombe River tumbles over a succession of rapids cut into the deep valley, offering a truly beautiful sight, and a great photo opportunity. We rejoin the Pride of Africa and settle down for a journey to Mununga, where we spend tonight.

Day 7 - Pride of Africa

Enjoy a relaxed day to soak up the luxury of the Pride of Africa as we're whisked across Zambia. You could visit the lounge car and listen as our on-board historian gives informative lectures about a fascinating range of subjects. Or simply sit back in the observation car and admire the views as we make our way through the wilderness and across a region of quaint mining towns known as 'the Copperbelt'.

Day 8 - Travelling across Zambia

You have another free day on board today, luxuriating in the passing views as we make our way further across Zambia. The train travels through Lusaka, Zambia's tree-lined capital and largest city, and one of the fastest developing cities in southern Africa. Afterwards, we cross the striking Kafue Railway Bridge, a 427-metre-long girder bridge that spans the vast waters of the Kafue River and affords great views.

Day 9 - Zimbabwe and Victoria Falls

A highlight of our holiday awaits as we arrive in Livingston. We travel into Zimbabwe, crossing the border bridge that spans a gorge across the incredible Victoria Falls. Victoria Falls' indigenous name is Mosi-oa-Tunya, which translates beautifully to 'the smoke that thunders'. The falls are one of the world's finest natural wonders and one of the most stunning waterfalls in the world. We disembark and transfer to our hotel close to the falls. Later, we take to the waters of the Zambezi River, just upstream from the falls, on a sunset cruise. Admire the changing hues of the African sunset as we absorb the breathtaking beauty of the river, and perhaps catch a glimpse of the resident crocodiles.

Day 10 - At leisure

Enjoy a day free to relax at our hotel; perhaps unwind in the lush gardens or go for a refreshing dip in the outdoor swimming pool. Or, if you fancy stretching your legs you could continue exploring the local area. Our hotel is just a short walk from the crashing waters of Victoria Falls, so heading back to admire the thundering waters is a popular choice. If you're feeling adventurous, you could even admire this stunning sight from the unique vantage point of a helicopter (payable locally).

Day 11 - Through Botswana

Relax on board today as we leave Zimbabwe and continue through Botswana. With a very small population, Botswana is a largely rural country, with wide open plains stretching out into the distant desert landscape, dotted with a number of traditional villages. The train crosses the Tropic of Capricorn on its route to Gaborone, Botswana's compact capital, found just above the South African border close to the Madikwe Game Reserve.

Day 12 - Madikwe Game Reserve

We disembark and transfer to the Madikwe Game Reserve in South Africa today. Boasting a beautifully diverse landscape, Madikwe is home to a variety of rare and wonderful creatures including leopards, elephants, antelopes, rhinos and lions. This afternoon we take our first game drive through the wilderness, hoping to spot many of these wonderful creatures in their natural habitats.

Day 13 - Madikwe Game Reserve

We enjoy a full day dedicated to wildlife spotting in Madikwe Game Reserve today, contrasting both early morning and afternoon game drives to increase our chances of spotting the fascinating animals found here. Madikwe is somewhat of a hidden gem; though it boasts the title of the fifth largest game reserve in South Africa, it's also one of its lesser known, giving it an air of exclusivity. We make our way through the plains of the savannah, hoping to spot the mighty 'Big Five' amongst the woodlands and rocky outcrops.

Day 14 - The Magaliesberg Mountains

We embark upon a final early morning game drive in Madikwe Game Reserve; if we're lucky, we might catch a glimpse of the highly endangered African Wild Dog, a wild dog with large, bat-like ears and mottled coat in shades of orange, black and white. After hopefully having seen a number of stunning animals, we return to the Pride of Africa. We travel through the glorious scenery of South Africa, running alongside the dramatic Magaliesberg Mountains, a sharp ridge of peaks that tower above the tracks.

Day 15 - Pretoria

We arrive in Pretoria, a place with a rich political history. South Africa officially has three capital cities, and as one of them, Pretoria serves as the country's administrative capital and seat of the government. On arrival, we get to know the city on a guided tour. We then return to Rovos Rail Station where we enjoy lunch ahead of a tour of the fascinating locomotive workshops. This afternoon, we re-board the Pride of Africa and continue on our journey, making our way towards Kimberley.

Day 16 - Kimberley

Today, we reach Kimberley, the capital of South Africa's Northern Cape Province. Kimberley is a city with a rich and fascinating diamond mining history, and the area is home to a number of 19th-century diamond mines. We visit its most famous, the 'Big Hole', a huge, water-filled man-made pit that's home to a diamond mine. We also visit the Kimberley Mine Museum, a recreated townscape and museum that houses many artefacts from the diamond rush, including jewellery and uncut diamonds.

Day 17 - Matjiesfontein

The Pride of Africa reaches Matjiesfontein today. This village was founded in 1884 and is officially a National Monument, famous for its main street with historic, colonial-era buildings and a timeless atmosphere. With time to discover it at your own pace, you could take a step back in time and head to the old-fashioned Victorian pub for a pint. We return to the train for the final leg of our epic journey, arriving in Cape Town this evening and disembarking the Pride of Africa for the final time. We transfer to our hotel in South Africa's cosmopolitan capital, where we spend the next four nights.

Day 18 - Cape Town

Today, we're introduced to Cape Town as we discover some of the city's best-loved attractions. We ascend the imposing Table Mountain by cable car, where we enjoy splendid views across the sprawling city and azure ocean. After descending, we take an insightful guided tour of Robben Island, the UNESCO-listed site that's home to the prison where Nelson Mandela was infamously imprisoned.

Day 19 - Vineyards

We travel by coach to South Africa's most celebrated vineyards today, visiting Franschhoek and Stellenbosch Valleys - famous as two of the finest wine regions in the world. We soak up incredible views across the verdant sloping vineyards before the chance to sample some of the award-winning wines. We enjoy the locally made wines with a tasting session, accompanied by some delicious tapas-style food pairings.

Day 20 - Cape Point and Boulders Bay

We travel to Cape Point, on the Cape of Good Hope at Africa's south-western tip, overlooking the crashing waters of the South Atlantic Ocean. Here, we experience a journey aboard the Flying Dutchman funicular railway, winding up to the upper lighthouse above Cape Point, taking in incredible panoramic views. Next, we head to Boulders Beach. The beach is a breathtaking paradise of blue-green waters and white sand, and is home to its own colony of African penguins. We spend some time in the beautiful surroundings enjoying close-up views of the penguins, before returning to our hotel.

Day 21 - To London

Our holiday draws to a close today as we bid farewell to Cape Town and southern Africa, making our way to the airport for our overnight flight to London Heathrow.

Day 22 - London

We land at London Heathrow today and your holidays ends.

Additional information

Please note

Please note that while every departure of this tour will feature the same excursions, the order may differ from that shown above.

Mobility information

Due to the nature of our tours they are generally unsuitable for those with restricted mobility. If you’d like to discuss any particular holiday with us in this respect, then please don’t hesitate to call us.

Hotels

Radisson Blu Hotel Waterfront, Cape Town

Radisson Blu Hotel Waterfront, Cape Town

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Serena Hotel, Dar Es Salaam

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TAU Game Lodge, Madikwe Game Reserve

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The Victoria Falls Hotel, Zimbabwe

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Train

The Pride of Africa

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Ultimate Dar Es Salaam, Victoria Falls and The Pride of Africa

Journey through Africa on one of the world’s most luxurious trains

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Rhianna Coote
Rhianna
Luke Simpson
Luke
Lynne Broadley
Lynne