Johannesburg tours and activities

 

General make-up of the train Locomotive, generator car, staff car, guest sleepers, a non-smoking lounge car (26 guests), two non-smoking 42-seat dining cars (if required, plenty of space for the maximum of 72 guests carried), kitchen car, guest sleepers, smoking lounge and Observation Car (32 guests) at the tail.

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. An enthusiastic team of chefs is responsible for overseeing the very important task of ensuring guests’ every need is catered for. There’s an accent on fresh local ingredients and traditional dishes such as game are a specialty.  Breakfast is between 07h00 and 10h00, lunch at 13h00 and a formal dinner at 19h30. A gong heralds lunch and dinner.Rovos Railways Tea Lounge

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.

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.

Smoking is only allowed in the privacy of your suite and in the Club Lounge.

 

 

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blue trainIntroduction

The Blue Train has been synonymous with luxury hospitality, tourism and leisure since 1946.It offers a unique way of experiencing some of Southern Africa’s magnificent landscapes and landmarks. On board the train, guests indulge with fine cuisine accompanied by some of the best wines South Africa has to offer. Around-the-clock personal Butlers see to the guests’ every need for the duration of their experience; be it in the comfort of their private suites or at any one of our exquisite lounges.

 

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The park is situated on the extinct remains of a volcanic crater, said to be one of only three alkaline volcanoes in the world. It provides a wide diversity of eco-types, giving a beautiful home to more than 44 species of mammals, including the Rhino, Lion, Elephant, Buffalo and Leopard. One of the most interesting aspects of this reserve is that it brings together the desert antelopes such as Springbok, Oryx, Tsessebe and Hartebeest alongside Impala, Kudu, Nyala and Bush Buck. In addition over 300 bird species can be found here. You will view the beauty of Pilanesberg which is reflected in a large central lake, the Mankwe Dam. The area lies in a transition zone between the kalahari sandveld and the lowveld. Due to this transition zone, an overlap of mammals, birds and vegetation occur. For instance the red eyed bulbul and the black eyed bulbul which normally occur in separate areas overlap here. Syenite koppies, thickly forested ravines, typical bushveld, rolling grasslands and lightly wooded areas can be seen.

On arrival, you will see a massive burial mound called the Tumulus, which is your entrance to learning the secrets of our ancestry. Maropeng means "Returning to the place of origin" in Setswana. The Maropeng Visitor Centre is an exciting, world-class exhibition, focusing on the development of humans and our ancestors over the past few million years.
The Sterkfontein caves are world famous for their fossil finds and a well-known visitor destination. Within the caves, you will view many hominid and other animal fossils, dating back more than 4- million years, to the birth of humanity.  You will also see the most important and most famous of these fossils are “Mrs Ples”, a 2.1 million year old Australopithecus skull, and “Little Foot” an almost complete Australopithecus skeleton that is more than 3 million years old. These fossils, both found in the Sterkfontein caves in the cradle of Humankind tell much about the precursors of modern humans, Homo sapiens.

The Lion Park is situated near Lanseria Airport and Fourways, not very far from Johannesburg and Pretoria. The Lion Park is home to over 80 lions including the rare white lions and many other carnivores such as cheetah, wild dog, brown hyena, striped hyena, spotted hyena, black-backed jackal, side-striped jackal, and a wide variety of antelope which roam freely in the antelope area. You will interact with some of the animals in the Cub World area which has a giraffe feeding platform that puts you at eye level with the tame resident giraffe creating a fun experience for all ages. Then you will visit the popular cub interaction which allows you to touch the cubs and take photographs.

Lesedi Cultural Village was established in 1993. The vision - to provide an authentic showcase of the traditional cultures of some of the well known African tribes, who have their home in South Africa. Representatives of these tribes facilitated the design of the cultural villages to ensure an historically representative portrayal of the cultures, highlighting aspects of the traditional way of life. Members of these historic communities live at Lesedi and continue to breathe life into their fascinating cultures.Lesedi deluxe room

Situated within the Cradle of Humankind, a visit to South Africa is incomplete without a visit to Lesedi - the cradle of living African culture. In an informative and entertaining way, Lesedi provides the visitor with a better understanding of the rich cultural background of the traditional peoples of South Africa.

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Elephant Sanctuary is located in Maliesburg Mountains and an hour from Johannesburg. It is surrounded by natural indigenous bush and is home to impala, klipspringer, baboons, porcupine, caracal, leopard, a host of other small mammals, 350 bird species and, of course, five magnificent African Elephants. The Elephant Sanctuary provides a “halfway house” for young African elephants in need of a temporary home. The Elephant Sanctuary Guides will provide in-depth information and insight into African elephants. You will be introduced to the elephants in the forest area, and here you will be able to touch and interact with the elephants. You will see the special relationship that the elephant handlers share with their elephants and become a part of it forming your relationship and bond with the elephants. After you will take a short walk with the elephant’s trunk-in-hand and view where the elephants sleep at night in their stables. You will then learn about their anatomy and feed them and on some hot days you may even see the elephants swimming.

Sun City’s most elaborate feature is the Palace of the Lost city, an extravagantly imaginative hotel playground whose fantastical architecture and fun features are weaved round a recreated legend, artificially generated waves in the Valley of the waves, Sun City offers you 4 exclusive hotels all with water-sport, golf, shows, swimming pools and beautiful gardens. Sky-trains, bright lights, casinos and extravaganzas are just of the few attractions that helped to turn Sun city into southern Africa’s premier tourist hotspot. This is where you will explore this magnificent resort. Its unique architectural style, man made lakes and tropical gardens and is a feast for the eye

This tour gives you the opportunity to gain a new perspective and personal insight into the largest Black city in Africa. Soweto may sound like an African name, but the word was originally an acronym for "South Western Townships", a product of segregationist planning..
Soweto is synonymous with the struggle for freedom in South Africa and is a vibrant, culturally rich township/city situated on the outskirts of Johannesburg. Within Soweto you will see the Hector Petersen Memorial, Regina Mundi Church, Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital, Mandela House, Freedom Square.

Pretoria lies north of Johannesburg approximately 58km away from Johannesburg city. Often referred to as the "Jacaranda City", this nickname refers to the thousands of trees lining the streets, their purple blossoms heralding the approach of summer each October. Visit to the Voortrekker Monument, a striking memorial built to honour the early pioneers. We then continue to the central part of the city of Pretoria, visiting Kruger House Museum and Church Square, where the statue of Paul Kruger looks down on the passers by. Melrose House is a classic example of a Victorian suburban townhouse and a visit can also be included, subject to time permitting (however it is closed on Mondays).We then continue to the imposing Union Building, which houses the offices of the State President, Deputy President and Minister of Foreign Affairs. Our stop here provides an impressive view over the city and completes the tour

Visit Gold Reef City which is a large amusement park in Johannesburg located on an old gold mine, and experience  the Gold rush era. There are original mining houses from the era on display. View gold being poured. There are numerous rides, including some popular rides ranging from The Anaconda, the river rapids, the jozi express, a 55m high giant wheel, runaway train, dreamboat and the tower of terror - originally designed by Swiss designer Ronald Bussink, manufactured by local companies, and built by the park themselves. It is a vertical-drop roller coaster which features a drop of 47 meters, and a pull-out which features a positive G-force of 6.3 Gs. This coaster is also the record holder for the current tallest and fastest roller coaster in Africa. There are hotels and restaurants situated all over the city. It also features a children's science museum and a tour of the deepest gold mine in the world. 2 Movies are featured at a time in the 4D Movie Theater, with 3d effects, surround sound and chairs which move in sync with the film.

Johannesburg which is one the metropolis in South Africa and remains the country’s financial and commercial heart. You will view the “Rainbow Nation” at work in the upmarket suburbs- Rosebank and Sandton then Downtown Johannesburg. The Northern suburbs can be viewed from a high vantage point (Carlton centre 50th floor) after which we drive through Hillbrow, the most densely populated part of the city, cross over Nelson Mandela Bridge and into downtown Johannesburg. A stop is made at Mary Fitzgerald Square in Newtown where a variety of African arts and crafts are sold then visit the Apartheid Museum.