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Rovos Rail

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Title: Rovos Rail  
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Subject: South African Class 5E1, Series 5, Rail transport in South Africa, Luxury train, List of companies of South Africa, Transport in Tanzania
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Rovos Rail

Rovos Rail is a private railway company operating out of Capital Park Station in Pretoria, South Africa. The Society of International Railway Travelers has regularly named the Pride of Africa, as the train is called, as one of the World's Top 25 Trains because of its excellent accommodation, public spaces, service, dining and off-train sightseeing.

Rovos Rail runs its train-hotel to a regular schedule on various routes throughout Southern Africa, from South Africa to Namibia and Tanzania. The trains consist of restored Rhodesia Railways (NRZ) coaches with two lounges, two restaurant cars, private sleeping compartments, each with private ensuite facilities. The train has three types of accommodation on board, the smallest being a Pullman, at 76 square feet; the largest being the Royal Suite, which is half a train car, and 172 square feet. All types of cabins have ensuite shower, sink and toilet. The Royal also has a Victorian-style bathtub.[1]

The company was started in 1989 by Rohan Vos [2] and is still family owned. Rovos Rail employs a staff of 210 including the on-board staff to those working to restore carriages in the company's Capital Park depot.


Entering a tunnel on the TAZARA line in southern Tanzania

Rovos Rail operates the following routes:

as well as golf safaris and private train charters.

Every two years Rovos Rail runs a Cape to Cairo route (using private chartered aircraft and lake cruiser for parts of the journey). This was offered for the first time in 2008, again in 2010 and is scheduled to repeat two similar trips in 2012.[3]


A Rovos Rail train derailed on 21 April 2010 near Pretoria. Three people were killed and several passengers were injured. The owner of Rovos Rail said that the train’s nineteen carriages were uncoupled from the locomotive during a changeover at Centurion Station when they freewheeled out of control, crashing back at Pretoria station. Approximately half of the 55 passengers were on board along with some of the thirty staff.[4]



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External links

  • Official website
  • A review of Rovos Rail's Pride of Africa by The Society of International Railway Travelers
  • Rovos Rail - Pride of Africa. From Cape Town to Dar Es Salaam on YouTube
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