Train to Cape Town


Oct 30th, 2012, 09:53 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 1,022
Train to Cape Town

Has anyone taken the Premium class train from Johannesburg to Cape Town?
We have gotten FFM RT SFO-Atlanta-JB and arrive two days prior to the start of our tour in Cape town the dates only work if we arrive a couple days early.
First time to South Africa and from what I have been reading JB is not the best to wander around in on your own, and as our tour does pick JB up along the way we thought taking the overnight train might be fun, see some of the countryside along the way. Worthwhile or should be just fly?
thanks in advance for any thoughts on the subject
JoanneH is offline  
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Oct 30th, 2012, 10:12 AM
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Fly, absolutely and spend the extra couple days in Cape Town, there is so much to do there. 25 hours on the train versus 2 hour flight ?
kellyee21 is offline  
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Nov 1st, 2012, 07:56 PM
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Never, ever 'just fly'. You miss out on soooo much, seeing and experiencing absolutely nothing at 35,000 feet!

The Premier Classe train gets great reports, it has private sleepers, meals included in the fare in an elegant dining car, and a lounge-bar car.

The train takes you from Jo'burg across the Karoo to the Cape wine region and CT itself, great scenery, and a real experience - far more rleaxed than the nightmare of modern flying.

So, 2 hours of nothingness, cooped up in a flimsy aluminium tube with all the airport stress at each end (in fact, 5 hours out of your day in total)?

Or a 25-hour rail adventure, the traditional, historic and civilised way between Jo'burg and Cape Town that you'll remember all your life?

No contest!
Man_in_seat_61 is online now  
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Nov 1st, 2012, 08:00 PM
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And yes, I've done this trip myself on the fabulous (and fabulously expensive) Blue Train, and returned from Durban to Cape Town over much of the same route at the opposite end of the scale, the regular and dirt cheap Shosholoza Meyl sleeper train.

The Premier Classe train sits between these extremes, as an affordable deluxe option, but as I say it gets great reports from everyone who goes on it - see the photos at
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