Rovos Rail is one of the luxury train journeys of Africa covering numerous routes across Africa. The train consists of re-furbished Rhodesia coaches with several passenger cabins, restaurant cars, lounge car, patio, and others. Started by Rohan Vos in 1989, this family-owned private train is a major luxury attraction of Africa.
The suites of Pride of Africa are luxury accommodations with numerous en-suite and common business-class amenities. There are three types of suites with varying luxury levels, namely; The Royal, Deluxe, and Pullman. Basic amenities in all the suites are writing area, personal safe, mini-bar, amenities bag, toiletries, hair dryer, and others.
The Royal Suites have private lounge, en-suite bathroom fitted with Victorian bath and shower. It is the most-luxurious accommodation of all. The Deluxe Suites have lounge room, and en-suite bathroom with shower. The Royal and Deluxe suite have double or twin beds. The Pullman Suites have sofa-set, which can be pulled into bed. It has an en-suite bathroom fitted with shower.
Rovos Rail Pride of Africa is a luxury train with numerous amenities and facilities like:
- Comfortable sublime cabins with beds, sitting area, and en-suite bathroom
- Toiletries, bathrobe, gown, slippers, and hair dryer
- Laundry service on-board
- Luggage rack for safety storage of luggage
- A souvenir shops at rail station and on-board
- Board games, card tables, books, magazines, playing cards, and others are available in the observatory car
- Electronic safe in the cabin
- Temperature controlled cabins
There are two dining cars in the train. During dining, the tourists are expected to be in smart formal attire. Game dishes are very common on-board. Multi-course lunch and dinner are served and breakfast is made-to-order. The dining cars of the train provide local delicacies and seasonal dishes. The guests are served fine South African wines. The dining cars are decorated in Victorian style. The tables are covered with crisp linen.
The lounge and observation car allows tourists to enjoy beautiful sceneries as the train glides through the region. The lounge car has an open-air patio. The bar in the lounge car served numerous styles of alcoholic beverages. The open-air patio is tagged as the best part of the train, by many passengers.
Cape Town journey – Cape Town to Pretoria and vice versa
This itinerary runs for three days and two nights covering the grasslands of Highveld, barrens of Great Karoo, mountain ranges of Cape, and the city of Cape Town after passing through Lion's head, Table Mountain, and others. The train also halts at Matjiesfontein Village of 19th century, Kimberley, and others for sightseeing.
Victoria Falls Journey – Victoria Falls to Pretoria; and, vice versa
This itinerary spans for three whole days and three nights covering scenic routes like Beit bridge, Zimbabwe border, Hwange Game Reserve, Victorian Falls Hotel, Zambezi River, and others. This route gives more importance to the natural wealth of the land.
Durban Safari – Durban to Pretoria and vice versa
This is three days and three nights itinerary covering hidden beauties like KaZulu Natal, Sundays River, waterfalls, game farm, Ardmore Ceramics, Midlands, and others. This tour covers the battlefield tour, Spionop Lodge for nature exploration, spotting birds, and others.
Golf Safari – Round trip from Pretoria to Pretoria
This is a nine days and eight nights itinerary covering golf-based destinations like game drive on Pilanesberg Hills, 18 holes at Champagne Sports Resort of Drakensberg Mountain, traditional game at Durban Country Club, game viewing in Hluhluwe, game at Mkhaya or Royal Swazi, gallery of Ngwenya glass factory , guava gallery, game drive at Kruger Park, and others. If you are a non-golfer, you can enjoy other activities like Battlefields tour, Hluhluwe Game Reserve, Guava Gallery, Kruger Park game drive, Drakensberg Mountain Range, Ngwenya Glass Factory, and others.
African Golf Collage – Cape Town to Pretoria and vice versa
This ten days and nine nights tour covers golfing and non-golfing activities. The trip starts with a game drive in Kruger Park and covers game watching in Hluhluwe, St. Lucia Wetland Park, Durban city tour, Ardmore Ceramics, Valley of Thousand Hills, Bloemfontein tour, Addo Elephant Par, Ostrich farms of Oudtshoorn, Outeniqua Mountain, distillery of Winelands, and others before ending the trip at Cape Town. Golfers can choose to play at Humewood, Ernie Elsoubaai and Fancourt, Port Elizabeth, Leopard Creek, and others.
Dares Salaam Journey – Dar es Salaam to Cape Town and vice versa
This is 14 days tour starting from South Africa and ends closer to Atlantic Ocean covering Zimbabwe, Botswana, Zambia, Tanzania, and others. Important destinations and routes covered in this itinerary are Matjiesfontein Village, Kimberley diamond town, Pretoria City, Madikwe Game Reserve, Victoria Falls Hotel, Zambezi River, Great Rift Valley Lake and Valley, Selous Game Reserve, and others. The tour includes many overnight stays at resorts and hotels across the continent.
Namibian Safari – Walvis Bay to Petoria and vice versa
This itinerary covers 3,400 km in 9 days from the Highveld Savannahs to the Atlantic of the west. The train starts from Pretoria and covers destinations and scenic routes like Kimberley, Mine museum village, Fish River Canyon, Kalahari Desert, Windhoe, Sossusvlei, Namib Desert, Etosha National Park, German Hansa Town, and to Walvis Bay.
Trail of two oceans – Dar es Salaam to Lobito Angola and vice versa
This itinerary coves 15 days and 14 nights. This itinerary covers Tanzania, Congo, Zambia, and Angola. This is the world’s first route to cover the copper trails of the land. In this itinerary, the train covers Selous Reserve, South Luangwa safari, Lumbumbashi tour, Benguela line, and Lobito.
Comparing Rovos Rail and Palace on Wheels
The Palace on Wheels covers only one signature itinerary covering eminent attractions of Rajasthan, and surrounding regions. However, the Rovos Rail Pride of Africa covers 15 different itineraries covering various destinations.
Palace on Wheels covers attractions in two different states of India. The itineraries of Rovos Rail Pride of Africa cover numerous countries of Africa.
The Palace on Wheels train manages to accommodate the tourists in the train for the entire trip. The Rovos Rail Pride of Africa offers accommodation at various hotels and resorts around the continent, during different itineraries.
There are two types of accommodations inside Palace on Wheels; namely Deluxe Cabin and Super Deluxe Cabin. In Rovos Rail Pride of Africa, the train holds three types of accommodations namely; The Royal Suite, Deluxe Suite, and Pullman Suite.
Palace on Wheels provides free Wi-Fi on-board throughout the trip. Rovos train does not provide internet services inside the train.
Smoking is restricted in every saloon of Palace on Wheels, including bathrooms. If you wish to smoke, your butler will guide you to a restricted service room. In Rovos Rail, smoking is allowed in Club Lounge of the train.
Alcoholic beverages are present in Palace on Wheels, but are not included in the tariff. In Rovos Rail, every suite has a mini-bar, filled with alcoholic beverages of traveler’s choice. The drinks are included in the tariff.
According to Palace on Wheels booking policies, children below the age of 5 are charged 10% of tariff and those below the age of 12 are charged 50%. In Rovos Rail, children below the age of 4 are free to travel.
Palace on Wheels can accommodate 82 passengers during one trip. Rovos Rail can accommodate 72 passengers.
Palace on Wheels lounge car has a sitting area and bar, which are enclosed. The lounge car of Rovos Rail has a sitting area, bar, and an open-air patio.
Palace on Wheels provides satellite TV, LCD screen, DVD players, and other entertainment facilities inside the cabins. Rovos Rail maintains the 18th century royal look of the train and no TVs or radios are available.
Palace on Wheels provides a traditional spa, which service Ayurvedic and fusion massages and treatments to the passengers. Rovos Rail does not include a spa.
Laundry is a paid-service at specific locations in Palace on Wheels route. Laundry is an on-board limited complimentary service in Rovos Rail.