Board The Blue Train in the Jacaranda City of Pretoria – the administrative capital of South Africa – and travel south through farmlands and along the ‘Golden Arc’; visible only by the mining shafts in the distance.
En-route to Cape Town, stop in Kimberly for an off-the-train excursion. Kimberley, once the epicenter of a worldwide diamond rush. This city’s chequered history is inextricably linked with the romance of those rare and beautiful stones.
Here The Blue Train guests are cordially invited to disembark, take a tour through the streets of modern day Kimberly to visit the Kimberley Mine Museum and the ‘Big Hole’. The Blue Train luxury coach is used to transport guests, alternatively they can be taken on a historic electric tram when it is available.
Step back into a world of pioneers and adventurers-circa 1880. Marvel at the sheer magnitude of the ‘Big Hole’, the largest hole in the world excavated by hand. At a replica of an alluvial-diamond diggers, try your luck at panning and possibly finding a diamond of your very own!
Board The Blue Train once more and continue on to a South bound journey into the heartland of the Great Karoo. Awaken to the sight of vineyards and orchards as you descend through mysterious and beautiful valleys and mountains, such as Drakenstein, Slanghoek and Elandskloof – towards Cape Town’s imposing and instantly recognisable Table Mountain, sentinel and gateway to the African continent.
The city of Cape Town has a lot to offer a descerning tourist, among places of interest, you can visit pearl-white beaches washed by the Indian and Atlantic Oceans, watch colourful, old-style fishing boats in Kalk Bay, explore the old Malay slave quarters, enjoy the finest seafood in the world, wander through Greenmarket Square’s famous flea market and enjoy a sundowner at the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront.
On the return leg, follow on the northbound tracks of Cecil John Rhodes, who dreamed of a railroad from Cape to Cairo.
Pass through the wine lands of the fertile Hex River valley, in the shadow of imposing mountains, up and inland to the endless sweeping landscapes of the Karoo. Here, between high-road and rail-road, is the tiny hamlet of Matjiesfontein. The Blue Train guests are invited for a short ride back in time, on a historical London double decker bus
Stop a while and savour the vastness and the silence of the surrounding plains. The Victorian buildings and original nineteenth century London lamp posts impart to the traveller, the uncanny sense of entering a colonial timewarp – an oasis suspended in a different age.
Stretch your legs, breathe in the dry clear air and walk in the footsteps of those who over the years have been enchanted by this place. Among them, Lord Randolph Churchill, Cecil Rhodes, Olive Schriener and the Sultan of Zanzibar. Sip a drink at the renowned Lord Milner Hotel – refurbished in the 1970’s by the visionary hotelier and designer David Rawdon, who bought the entire village.
Board The Blue Train once more for the journey northward into the interior. Before you drift to sleep, glance through the window at a sky filled with a trillion stars. And when you awake, you will be approaching the mining centres on the Gold Reef, and will soon end your journey in the Jacaranda City – Pretoria.