Rovos Rail: The Copper Trail
Lusaka Elephant Sanctuary • Victoria Falls • Kolwezi Copper Mine • South Luangwa
In July 2022, Rovos Rail will set off on this new expedition traversing Zimbabwe, Zambia, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Angola. Travel across the might Zambezi from the incomparable Victoria Falls towards Kafue River for a sunset cruise. After a visit to Lusaka's elephant sanctuary fly into South Luangwa National Park for a three-night safari.
With its western and northwestern edge bounded by the Muchinga Escarpment and the southern border lined with the meandering Luangwa River, there is no shortage of dramatic and fascinating topography in this beautiful game-rich park. Enjoy a tour of Lubumbashi (DRC) then join the historical copper trail for short walking tours detailing Angola's recent history with journey's end in Lobito.
The Train: Each train has accommodation carriages, dining cars, a lounge car, small gift shop, smoking lounge and observation car with open-air balcony. Maintaining the spirit of a bygone era, there are no radios or television sets on board. There are three types of suites available which include a dedicated host available at all times and services the suites daily.
Pullman Suite: Used on short journeys, the cabins feature an en-suite bathroom with shower, toilet and basin. During the day, the suites have a comfortable sofa-seat with a conversion to double or twin beds (side-by-side or upper and lower bunks) for the evening.
Deluxe Suite: Accommodates one or two passengers in double or twin beds with its own lounge area and en-suite bathroom with shower, toilet and basin. Includes a bar fridge filled with the on-board beverages of the passengers choice.
Royal Suite: Takes up half a carriage with its own private lounge area and en-suite bathroom with Victorian bath, separate shower, toilet and basin. Accommodates one or two passengers in double or twin beds and includes a bar fridge filled with the on-board beverages of the passengers choice.
Day 1: Victoria Falls The train departs Victoria Falls and crosses the bridge to Livingstone. Named after David Livingstone, the Scottish explorer and missionary who was the first European to explore the area, Livingstone served as the province's capital until 2012. Guests may freshen up in their suites before joining fellow travellers in the lounge or observation cars. Dinner is served in the dining cars en route to Choma.
Day 2: Kafue River The train crosses the Kafue railway bridge - a 477-metre long steel girder truss bridge of 13 spans each at 33 metres supported on concrete piers. Disembark for a sunset cruise on the Kafue River (drinks included). Return to the train for dinner which is served en route to Lusaka, the country's capital, for overnight.
Day 3: Elephant Sanctuary Visit Lusaka's elephant sanctuary. Here, teams rescue and rehabilitate orphaned elephants with the focus of returning them to the wild in Kafue National Park. Lunch is served in the dining cars as the train travels through the Central Province to Kabwe. Tea is served in the lounge car and observation car with dinner served en route to Kapiri Mposhi for overnight.
Days 4 -7: South Luangwa National Park Breakfast is served in the dining cars until departure, before transferring to Ndola Airstrip for a chartered flight to the South Luangwa National Park. Initially founded as the Luangwa Game Park in 1904 and converted to one of three game reserves in 1938, the impressive park covers about 9050km2 of the Luangwa Valley floor and lies anywhere from 500-800m above sea level. With its western and northwestern edge bounded by the Muchinga Escarpment, and the southern border lined with the meandering Luangwa River, there is no shortage of dramatic and fascinating topography in this beautiful game-rich park. Transfer to respective camps with lunch and check-in on arrival. Afternoon game drive in the Luangwa Valley (approximately 3 hours).
Over the next 3 days enjoy morning and afternoon game drives in the park.
Day 7: South Luangwa National Park - Lubumbashi Enjoy a morning game drive after breakfast, a morning game drive (approximately 2 hours) before checking out and transferring to the airport for the chartered flight to Ndola, Zambia. Transfer to Ndola Station to rejoin the train and enjoy lunch in the dining car as the train travels towards the border. Tea is served in the lounge car and observation car with dinner served in the dining cars en route to Lubumbashi.
Day 8: Lubumbashi Enjoy a drive through the city of Lubumbashi before rejoining the train and travel towards Lukuni. Lunch is served in the dining cars as the train passes Luishia, an old open-pit copper and cobalt mine. Tea is then served in the lounge and observation car with dinner served in the dining cars en route to Kolwezi for overnight.
Day 9: Copper Mine Disembark at Kolwezi for a visit to a copper mine in an area that holds one of the world's largest known copper and cobalt resources. Enjoy brunch at Katebi Lodge before returning to the train and departing for Kasombo. Dinner is served in the dining cars en route to Mutshatsha for overnight.
Day 10: At leisure onboard Enjoy breakfast and lunch in the dining cars as the train passes Kakopa en route to Malonga. Tea is served in the lounge and observation car and dinner served in the dining cars en route to Dilolo.
Day 11: Luau Breakfast is served in the dining cars followed by Angolan border formalities. Enjoy a walking of Luau, the start of the Benguela line before the train departs for Luena. Lunch is then served followed by tea as the train travels alongside the Cassai River. The catchment of the Cassai River encompasses a vast eco-region of 900,000km with an incredibly rich fish fauna. As the train passes the villages of Cassai and Cameia, there is sometimes an opportunity to see the local fisherman at work. Dinner is then served in the dining cars en route to Luena for overnight.
Day 12: Luena Enjoy a walking tour of Luena to learn more about the recent history of Angola before departing for Tchicala Tcholohanga. Lunch and afternoon tea is served followed by dinner as the train travels en route to Kuito.
Day 13: Kuito Enjoy a stroll through the town of Kuito, built in the historical heart of the Ovimbundu kingdom. Depart for Huambo and enjoy lunch in the dining cars, followed by tea in the lounge car and observation car. Dinner is served in the dining cars en route to Huambo for overnight.
Day 14: Huambo Enjoy a tour of Huambo, the second largest city in Angola and one of the old kingdoms on the central plateau, before departing for Lepi with lunch is served in the dining cars. Dinner is served as the train travels en route to Cubal for overnight.
Day 15: Lobito Arrive at journey's end, Lobito Station, Benguela Province, Angola.
*Itinerary also operates in reverse
• Accommodation • All meals • All beverages • Room service • Limited laundry • Excursions with a qualified guide(where applicable) • Entrance fees as per itinerary • On-board historian and doctor • Government tax • Flights to/from South Luangwa and overnight bag • South Luangwa meals, standard bar drinks, game activities, laundry, park fees, government tax and levies
Pricing (per person) $NZD
Lobito to Victoria Falls25 July
2023 Victoria Falls to Lobito4 July Lobito to Victoria Falls22 July
Lobito to Victoria Falls25 July
Booking conditions • Itinerary also operates in reverse
• Itinerary also operates in reverse