Train on the Namibia Safari by Luxury Train aboard Rovos Rail’s Pride of Africa journey
Rovos Rail Namibia Safari Sossusvlei dune walk.
Giraffe peeking out from a tree on the Namibia Safari by Luxury Train aboard Rovos Rail’s Pride of Africa journey
Man in Rovos Rail lounge car.

Namibia Safari aboard Rovos Rail’s Pride of Africa

Africa
9-day Escorted Tour
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Overview

The Highlights

  • Six nights aboard the Pride of Africa, one of the world’s finest luxury trains
  • The Big Hole in Kimberley, site of one of the world’s most famous diamond rushes
  • Visit the Fish River Canyon, second largest canyon in the world
  • Tour of Windhoek, a cosmopolitan city with a strong German influence
  • Game drives and overnight at Mokuti Lodge, located in the game-rich Etosha National Park
  • Twenty-four hour excursion to the world famous Sossusvlei, a stunning pan in the Namib Desert surrounded by massive red sand dunes
  • All accommodations, meals, alcohol (on board) and off-train excursions included

The Tour

The nine-day Namibia Safari is an unforgettable 1,500 mile (3,400 km) trek through one of the earth’s most interesting and alien landscapes, all aboard Rovos Rail’s Pride of Africa luxury train.

Departing from Pretoria, the first stop is Kimberley, center of one of the world’s famous diamond rushes, where there is an opportunity to savor the 1870s atmosphere of the mine village. The train traverses the stark vistas of the Northern Cape to the Fish River Canyon – second in size to the Grand Canyon – and Garas Park with its Quiver Tree Forest.

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Continue across the untamed beauty of the Kalahari Desert to Namibia’s capital for a tour; Windhoek is a lively, cosmopolitan city with a strong German flavor. Next, take a short flight to Sossusvlei, a stunning pan in the Namib Desert, for an overnight stay, followed by a night in the game-rich Etosha National Park.

On the last morning, the train travels the Namib to the perfectly preserved 19th-century German Hansa town of Swakopmund and Walvis Bay – an unforgettable end to a remarkable journey.

Imagine a country so vast and sparsely populated that it’s possible to find places devoid of everything: plants, animals, people, rocks: just endless miles of wind-swept sand.

Namibia is much more. Namib-Naukluft, Africa’s largest game park, is home to Sossusvlei’s brilliant red dunes. Etosha National Park is one of Africa’s largest, both in terms of its size and in its plethora of different kinds of animals.

And there’s no finer way to explore this desert land than by luxury train.

As the former German Southwest Africa, Namibia retains much of its colonial heritage—it’s also well-known for its great lager beers.

IRT Report: IRT’s Angela Walker and Rachel Hardy loved their time on Rovos Rail’s Pride of Africa. Click here for part one of their report on the trainhere for part two.

Rovos Rail Namibia map NEW

Countries Visited

  • South Africa
  • Namibia

Itinerary

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Day 1: Depart Pretoria

Gather at Rovos Rail’s private Capital Park station in Pretoria. Board the Pride of Africa for a late morning departure. Settle into your private cabin, and enjoy lunch and dinner on board as the train travels south toward the goldfields of the Witwatersrand.

Day 2: Kimberley

Arrive in Kimberley this morning.  Capital of the Northern Cape, Kimberley is well known for the discovery of diamonds that led to its establishment in 1871. Enjoy a tour of the Big Hole and Diamond Mine Museum.

Back on the train, lunch is served as you travel through the Karoo, a vast semi-desert region that was once an enormous inland sea. Over millions of years, volcanic matter was ground down and deposited as silt upon the seabed to form what geologists call the Karoo system. Afternoon tea and dinner are served on board.

Day 3: Upington

After breakfast, disembark for a walking tour of Upington, oasis town on the Orange River, surrounded by the Kalahari Desert and famous for its wine.  Back on board, lunch is served and Namibian border formalities will take place. Dinner is served en route to Holoog.

Day 4: Fish River Canyon

Explore the gigantic Fish River Canyon, largest canyon in Africa. The vast rocky landscape breaks up into a series of spectacular cliffs. Its size is impressive: 100 miles (161 km) long, up to 17 miles (27 km) wide and 1,800 feet (550 m) at its deepest.

Lunch is served as the train travels along the southern reaches of the Kalahari Basin. This afternoon, visit Garas Park and the Quiver Tree Forest. The prehistoric trees have forked branches that reach up to 16 feet (5 m) making for great photographic opportunities. Traverse the Kalahari Desert as dinner is served on board.

Day 5: Windhoek/Sossusvlei

Disembark at Windhoek station. Windhoek is an attractive city surrounded by clusters of hills and the impressive Auas and Eros Mountains. The Trans-Namib Transport Museum outlines Namibian transport history, particularly that of the railway. Visit the transport museum followed by a city tour en route to the airport.

Depart city in light aircraft for short scenic flight to Sossusvlei. After check-in and lunch at the lodge, embark on an afternoon desert drive followed by a bush dinner after sunset.

Day 6: Sossusvlei

Enjoy an early morning desert drive with breakfast in the vlei (dry marsh).  The dunes of the Namib were created by sand carried by the wind from the coast. The sand here is over 5-million years old and is red due to its iron-oxide content. As the light changes during the day, so does the appearance of the dunes’ characteristic color, allowing for interesting photographs at any time. The wind in the Sossusvlei area blows from all directions causing the sand to form a star shape with multiple arms, hence the name “star dunes.”

Depart Sossusvlei for one-hour flight back to Windhoek, where you rejoin the train for lunch, afternoon tea and dinner while traveling north toward the game-rich Etosha National Park.

Day 7: Etosha National Park

After breakfast, transfer to Mokuti Lodge in Etosha National Park, home to 114 mammal species, including the rare and endangered black rhino and black-faced impala. Lunch, afternoon game drive, dinner and overnight at the lodge.

Day 8: Etosha National Park

Early morning game drive in the Etosha National Park, where blue wildebeest, mountain and plains zebra, giraffe, hyena, lion, cheetah, leopard as well as 340 species of birds may be spotted. Return to the train for breakfast and check-out.  Transfer to Tsumeb station where the Pride of Africa awaits. Lunch and afternoon tea are served as the train travels southwest towards the Atlantic Ocean. Enjoy an African themed dinner on board this evening.

Day 9: Walvis Bay

Enjoy breakfast as the train traverses the Namib Desert. Afternoon arrival at journey’s end, Walvis Bay.

Day 1: Depart Walvis Bay

Depart Walvis Bay aboard Rovos Rail’s Pride of Africa late afternoon and settle into your private cabin. Enjoy lunch on board as the train travels east across the Namib Desert. Afternoon tea and dinner on board while traveling northeast to Etosha.

Day 2: Etosha National Park

After breakfast, transfer to a Mokuti Lodge in Etosha National Park, home to 114 mammal species, including the rare and endangered black rhino and black-faced impala. Lunch, afternoon game drive, dinner and overnight at the lodge.

Day 3: Etosha National Park

Early morning game drive in the Etosha National Park, where blue wildebeest, mountain and plains zebra, giraffe, hyena, lion, cheetah, leopard as well as 340 species of birds may be spotted. Return to the lodge for breakfast and check-out.  Rejoin the Pride of Africa at Tsumeb station for lunch, afternoon tea and dinner on board.

Day 4: Windhoek/Sossusvlei

Disembark at Windhoek station. Windhoek is an attractive city surrounded by clusters of hills and the impressive Auas and Eros Mountains. The Trans-Namib Transport Museum outlines Namibian transport history, particularly that of the railway. Visit the transport museum followed by a city tour en route to the airport.

Depart city in light aircraft for short scenic flight to Sossusvlei. After check-in and lunch at the lodge, embark on an afternoon desert drive followed by a bush dinner after sunset.

Day 5: Sossusvlei

Enjoy an early morning desert drive with breakfast in the vlei (dry marsh).  The dunes of the Namib were created by sand carried by the wind from the coast. The sand here is over 5-million years old and is red due to its iron-oxide content. As the light changes during the day, so does the appearance of the dunes’ characteristic color, allowing for interesting photographs at any time. The wind in the Sossusvlei area blows from all directions causing the sand to form a star shape with multiple arms, hence the name “star dunes.”

Depart Sossusvlei for one-hour flight back to Windhoek, where you rejoin the train for lunch, afternoon tea and dinner while traveling south through the Kalahari Desert.

Day 6: Fish River Canyon

Morning visit to Garas Park and the Quiver Tree Forest. The prehistoric trees have forked branches that reach up to 16 feet (5 m) making for great photographic opportunities.

Lunch on board and afternoon arrival in Holoog. Disembark for one-hour drive to explore the gigantic Fish River Canyon, largest canyon in Africa. The vast rocky landscape breaks up into a series of spectacular cliffs. Its size is impressive: 100 miles (161 km) long, up to 17 miles (27 km) wide and 1,800 feet (550 m) at its deepest.

Return to the train and travel east along the southern reaches of the Kalahari Basin. Dinner and Namibia/South Africa border formalities this evening.

Day 7: Upington

After breakfast, disembark for a walking tour of Upington, oasis town on the Orange River, surrounded by the Kalahari Desert and famous for its wine.  Back on board, lunch and dinner are served as the train travels through the Karoo, a vast semi-desert region that was once an enormous inland sea. Over millions of years, volcanic matter was ground down and deposited as silt upon the seabed to form what geologists call the Karoo system.

Day 8: Kimberley

Enjoy a leisurely morning with breakfast and lunch on board. Afternoon arrival in Kimberley. Capital of the Northern Cape, Kimberley is well known for the discovery of diamonds that led to its establishment in 1871. Enjoy a tour of the Big Hole and Diamond Mine Museum for tour the Big Hole Diamond Mine and museum. Enjoy an African themed dinner on board this evening.

Day 9: Pretoria

Enjoy breakfast as the train continues to travel northeast through the goldfields of the Witwatersrand via Krugersdorp, Germiston and Johannesburg. Arrive at Rovos Rail’s private Capital Park station in Pretoria early evening.

Dates & Prices

2022 Dates

April 5 - 14

April 16 - 25 *

April 27 - May 6

May 4 - 13

May 8 - 17 *

May 15 - 24 *

*This departure runs Walvis Bay to Pretoria.

  • Note tour is 10 days in 2022, with an extra day between Windhoek and Etosha, with a visit to the cheetah conservation project in Otjiwarongo.
  • Prices are per person
  • Tour priced in South African Rand (ZAR). For approximate exchange rates, visit http://www.xe.com.

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Rates include all accommodation, meals, beverages on board (except international/French champagne), room service, limited laundry service on board, excursions, entrance fees, flights to/from Sossusvlei and government tax.

Note tour is 10 days in 2022, with an extra day between Windhoek and Etosha, with a visit to the cheetah conservation project in Otjiwarongo.