Shongololo Express - Good Hope Tour

Observation balcony - © Rovos Rail
Gold double compartment - © Rovos Rail
Durban Hill Meadows - © Rovos Rail
Garden route - © Rovos Rail
Shongololo Express dining car - © Rovos Rail
Impalas en route - © Rovos Rail
Ostrich spotting - © Rovos Rail
Garden Route - © Rovos Rail
Station building - © Rovos Rail

Holiday Highlights

  • Enjoy luxury train travel through South Africa
  • Full-day game viewing in Kruger National Park
  • Visit Mantenga Cultural Village
  • Game drive in Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Park
  • World-heritage site, St Lucia (iSimangaliso) Wetland Park
  • Experience the natural wonder of Cango Caves
  • Lagoon ferry ride in Knysna
  • 15 days from £5,405 pp

Tour Dates:
Southbound: 3 October 2019, 30 January 2020, 1 October 2020
Northbound: 19 March 2019, 3 October 2019, 17 March 2020, 17 November 2020

Travel in comfort and luxury on this touring train that attends to your every need from relaxing accommodation to quality food. This 15-day journey offers an amazing and comprehensive view of South Africa, incorporating virtually every internationally regarded ‘must see’ sight and highlight. As the train travels the length and breadth of the country, guests can enjoy the great variety of landscapes, shorelines, cultures, lifestyles and cuisine that the South African Rainbow Nation has to offer.

NB: You have the option of including this special rail journey as part of a Tailored Rail tour. Ffestiniog Travel can make the additional arrangements to allow you to join this luxury train journey, at the beginning, during or end of a bespoke itinerary. We will organise rail and flight tickets where necessary and hotel accommodation. Please contact us direct at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information or click on the ‘Request a Quote’ button


Day 1 – Pretoria & Soweto

Soweto is home to one million people and was made famous by the Apartheid laws. Visit the Hector Petersen Memorial, named after one of the first students to be killed in the 1976 uprising against the Apartheid government. Spend the afternoon in Pretoria, the administrative capital of South Africa. Dinner included today.

Days 2 & 3 – Panorama Route & Kruger National Park

Visit Bourke’s Luck Potholes, which are strange deep cylindrical cavities formed by river erosion and floodwater. Blyde River Canyon Nature Reserve has the most spectacular viewpoints with astonishing views over South Africa’s Lowveld (so-named because it is much lower than the high escarpment along which the Panorama Route runs). The world-renowned Kruger National Park has 2-million hectares of an unrivalled diversity in life forms. It is home to an impressive number of species, including 114 species of reptiles, 507 species of birds and 147 species of mammals including the Big Five. Breakfast and dinner is included today.

Day 4 – Swaziland Tour

This tiny kingdom is the second smallest country in Africa. Experience Swazi Candles: a hive of activity displaying decorative candles, skilfully crafted woodcarvings, colourful textiles and superb basketwork for which Swazis are renowned. Continue through the Ezulwini Valley passing the Ludzidzini Royal residence en route to Mantenga Cultural Village, a living museum of old traditions representing a classical Swazi lifestyle during the 1850s. Breakfast and dinner included today.

Day 5 – Hluhluwe Game Drive

As the oldest proclaimed nature reserve in Africa, Hluhluwe is known for its rich wildlife and conservation efforts. The park is the only state-run park in KwaZulu-Natal with all the ‘Big Five’ game animals. Due to conservation efforts, the park now has the largest population of white rhino in the world. It is also one of the world’s top spots for viewing Nyala and is a prime birding destination for 340 species. Breakfast and dinner included.

Day 6 – St Lucia Wetland Park

Declared a World Heritage site in 1999, the park covers a mosaic of landforms that have created a vast array of biomes to support a wide variety of animals, plants and birds. The park boasts the highest bird count in all of Africa, the southern-most breeding spots for turtles in Africa, Africa’s tallest forested dunes, the largest remaining stands of sand forest and the biggest peat beds in the Southern Hemisphere. Breakfast and dinner included.

Day 7 – Durban

Durban is the third largest city in South Africa and enjoys great importance due to its industry and very large port. Drive along the ‘Golden Mile’ promenade where numerous hotels and restaurants are situated. Visit the botanical gardens and uShaka Marine World – Africa’s largest marine theme park. Breakfast and dinner included.

Day 8 – Battlefields Tour

Walk in the footsteps of three great leaders Winston Churchill, Mahatma Gandhi and General Louis Botha – a story on which the sun never sets. Britain marched into the South African war in the spring of 1899, confident that it “would all be over by Christmas!” It lasted three years and was to become the costliest Britain had ever fought. Breakfast, lunch and dinner included today.

Day 9 – Bloemfontein

Bloemfontein is the seat of the South African judicial system. The Women’s Memorial at the Anglo Boer War Museum is a reminder of life in the concentration camps and commemorates the 27,000 women and children who died in these camps. The Museum itself is a graphic depiction of the hardship endured by all during the war and relates the history of South Africa from 1652. Breakfast and dinner included.

Day 10 – Kimberley

Capital of the Northern Cape, Kimberley is well known for the discovery of diamonds that led to its establishment in 1871. Breakfast and dinner included.

Day 11 – Day at Leisure on Board

Enjoy a day at leisure on board as the train travels to Willowmore. All meals enjoyed on board- breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Day 12 – Cango Caves & Ostrich Farm

Surrounded by the natural beauty of this semi-desert region, Oudtshoorn is situated at the foot of the majestic Swartberg Mountain Range. Many rivers, streams and falls have their origins in the Swartberg, Outeniqua and Kammanassie mountains here. Oudtshoorn is regarded as the centre of the Klein Karoo and is world-renowned for its Cango Caves and the breeding of ostriches. Breakfast and dinner included.

Day 13 – Knysna

Drive along the coast from George, situated in the heart of the Garden Route. The town itself sits on a 10km plateau between the majestic Outeniqua Mountains to the north and the Indian Ocean to the south. The Knysna Heads – two sandstone cliffs guarding the mouth of the lagoon connecting the estuary with the sea – is a dramatic viewpoint. Breakfast, lunch and dinner included today.

Day 14 – Hermanus

Travel over the Rooihoogte and Floorshoogte passes via the Overberg to Hermanus, once a renowned fish market and whaling station. The whale hunts were stopped by international treaty in 1935. In season (normally between July and November) whales can be seen from as close as 5m away from the town's natural cliffs. Breakfast and dinner included.

Day 15 – Cape Town

Full day tour ending at 4pm back at the railway station.

Price Includes

  • Journey in a Gold class compartment (upgrade to Emerald available)
  • Accommodation with meals as specified
  • Tea, coffee and bottled water on board
  • Excursions accompanied by a qualified tour guide
  • Entrance fees as per the itinerary
  • Government Tax

Price per person

2019: From £5,405 per person sharing
2020: From £5,865 per person sharing

Booking form

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Why Choose Ffestiniog Travel?

  • UK's first rail tour operator to run an overseas escorted rail holiday in 1974
  • Created for people who love rail holidays and exploring the world’s heritage railways
  • Dedicated rail holiday specialist - great destinations, sightseeing and unparalled railway content
  • Train ticket supplier for worldwide rail operators - we can plan and arrange your rail journey to anywhere
  • Knowledge of the world’s rail routes makes us leading specialists in escorted and Tailor Made rail holidays
  • Over 60% of our existing rail tour travellers return to holiday with us year after year
  • Committed to supporting rail travel and heritage railways around the world
  • Our profits support the continued preservation of the famous Ffestiniog and Welsh Highland Railways
  • Small, dedicated rail holiday travel team offering an award winning personal service


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