The Blue Train: Cape Town to Pretoria, South Africa

Oct 1, 2005
Outside Magazine

Where It All Begins: Cape Town's Table Mountain    Photo: Walter Knirr/courtesy South Africa Tourism

Miles: 1,000
It's a day-and-a-half journey from Cape Town's white-sand beaches to Pretoria's jacaranda-scented interior. On this trip, soaring Table Mountain gives way to valley vineyards, sheep farms, Kimberley's diamond mines, and the mining shafts of the Witwatersrand gold-strike basin. The exotic landscape is matched by the exotic eats: Try karoo lamb and impala—the African antelope—paired with local South African wines. Aboard this high-tech train, plush suites have TVs and VCRs, and there's a channel dedicated to short documentaries on the passing scenery. Zebra-print pillows, gleaming hardwoods, and picture windows bring the outdoors in. If you happen to be sipping a cognac in the smoking lounge, you won't miss a thing—images from the train's locomotive camera are piped to a central monitor.

» SOUTH AFRICA: A double suite on the Blue Train (011-27-12-334-8459, for the day-and-a-half trip from Cape Town to Pretoria starts at $1,180, one-way, including meals and off-train excursions.

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