Rovos Rail - embarking

We started our trip on Rovos Rail; embarking from Pretoria to destination Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe - a 3-day/night trip It is a luxury train; we had a nice room with a good sized private bathroom. You were suppised to wear elegant casual clothes and for dinner it was tie and jacket or nice dress. (I had to practice tying my tie several times to get the Windsor knot.) The food was very good - three meals plus afternoon high tea.

Lots of opportunity to see beautiful places - and there were a few stops to wander around places and one safari.

First view out of train:

View of rear lounge/observation car.



We didn't spend much time in Pretoria but saw some interesting things.

Some well-known South African bears:

The capital building - One of the three South Africa government cities - this is the administrative section - legislative and judicial are in other cities:

And a statue of Nelson Mandela:

In a park:

And protests from natives who were moved out:

Rovos Rail station and trainyard

We were set to take a trip on the Rovos Rail luxury train from Pretoria to Victoria Falls.
Rohan Vos (and thus the name of the rail company) established this private rail company in South Africa that would travel on some of its own tracks and also those of the national rail company.

After arriving at Pretoria the day before the rail trip we went on a tour of the station and maintenance yard.

The waiting room - quite luxurious.


Guana Island Orchard

We went on a tour of the Guana Island orchard. It was interesting as usual. Jamal, the head orchard keeper, explained and showed lots of stuff to us. They do this tour a few times a week. The orchard keepers and the kitchen crew work together and meals always contain things from the orchard. One night they had a specially designed 10-course tasting menu - Orchard Dinner it was called. And as they served each course the head chef came out to explain what was in it. Everything was delicious.

Bananas and Passion Fruit flower

Guana Island Iguanas

The Anegada ground iguana or stout iguana is an endangered species that had just a few living on Anegada, another BVI island, and some were brought to Guana Island many years ago as part of the nature conservation effort on the island. Most of the island is really a nature conservancy and the owner is really committed to this endeavor. A number of other animals and plants jave been brought there. These iguanas are thriving there and you get to see them wandering around. A bunch of years ago there was one that would come up near the dining area and get fed - it had a name, but I don't remember it.