Rovos Rail Golf Safari
What is Included
6 Rounds of Golf
Since its establishment in 1989, Rovos Rail has earned an international reputation for its truly world-class travel experiences. Join the nine-day Golf Safari travelling the northeastern reaches of South Africa that will entertain the most discerning golfers with a delightful itinerary for non-playing guests. Travel from Pretoria to Sun City in the hills of the Pilanesberg for game viewing. Cross the spectacular Drakensberg Mountains to Spionkop, the perfect base for exploring the mountains, bush, birds and battlefields of the region. Traverse the scenic Valley of a Thousand Hills to Durban for a tour of the city and botanical gardens. The game viewing continues at Hluhluwe in Zululand (one of the oldest reserves in the country), Mkhaya (Swaziland’s refuge for endangered species) and the world-famous Kruger Park in Malelane, after which this memorable journey ends in Pretoria.
Day 1 Board Rovos Rail
- 11h30 Depart Rovos Rail Station in Pretoria.
- Day at leisure on the train.
- (Breakfast 07h00-10h00 • Lunch 13h00 • Tea 16h30 • Dinner 19h30).
General make-up of the train: Locomotive, generator car, staff car, guest sleepers, a non-smoking lounge car (26 guests), two non-smoking 42-seat dining cars (if required, plenty of space for the maximum of 72 guests carried), kitchen car, guest sleepers, smoking Club Lounge and Observation Car (32 guests) at the tail.
In maintaining the spirit of travel of a bygone era, there are no radios or television sets on board. The use of mobile phones, laptops and essentially anything that has the ability to disturb other passengers is confined to the privacy of your suites.
Day 2 Rustenburg
- Golfers: Morning tee off at Lost City or Gary Player Country Club.
- Leisure guests: Morning game drive in Pilanesberg Game Reserve. Explore the Lost City followed by lunch at the club.
- Dinner on board en route to Heidelberg.
Sun City - Gary Player Course
Par 72 6550m
The birth of the Sun City Resort called for South African golfing professional, Gary Player, to design an award-winning golf course that would fit in with the superlative venue. Using his experience and know-how he understood exactly what golfers would appreciate. The strength of this course lies in the fact that it doesn’t favour any particular shot and provides the same result whether playing the forward or intermediate tees. 8000 yards of golfing pleasure await all golfers with mesmerising views at every turn. Built in an extinct volcanic crater, this immaculate golfing paradise conforms to the stringent US PGA specifications and is home to the annual Nedbank Golf Challenge which plays host to some of the world’s golfing legends.
Lost City Golf Course
Par 72 6983m
After the completion of the Gary Player Country Club golf course, the popularity of the Sun City Resort and its many attractions demanded that another golf course be built. Again, Gary Player was commissioned to design the course, his challenge being to create a very different golfing experience. The course defies being bracketed into any particular genre having touches of mountain, desert and even African parkland in its make-up with wide fairways, a series of lakes that separates the ninth with the finishing hole and covers more than 100 hectares with 28 000 square metres of water features. Here the golfer can choose to tackle the course from its championship tees, the standard markers or forward tees. Even playing the shortest route presents a great test as the approaches to the greens – clad in bent grass andprotected by bunkers – demand careful judgment.
Signature hole: 13th - par 3 A green in the shape of Africa bordered by a pond, home to several large crocodiles!
Day 3 Day on Rails
- Day at leisure on the train.
- All meals enjoyed on board en route to Estcourt via Ladysmith.
Day 4 Estcourt
- Golfers: Morning tee off at Champagne Sports Resort.
- Leisure guests: Morning tour of the battlefields with lunch at Spionkop Lodge followed by a game drive OR relax at lodge.
- Dinner en route to Durban.
Champagne Sports Resort
Par 72 7400m
Located in the beautiful Drakensberg area, this course has to be rated as one of the most scenically memorable golf layouts in South Africa. Designed by Hugh Baiocchi and Kevin Curren, it successfully blends the natural attributes of the terrain and the surrounding beauty with the modern demands of a quality course. It undulates up and around the contours of a valley that nestles under the dominant peaks of Champagne and Cathkin Peaks and incorporates several holes with blind tee shots. Professional and novice alike will appreciate the 84 well-appointed bunkers that line the fairways and greens. The quality of the greens is accredited to Trevor Livesey whose passion remains unabated. Though the drama of the mighty mountains dominates the eye, the course also enjoys gentle vistas where the lower hills create a kaleidoscope of colour blessed with trees, rivers and dams to add even more of a challenge.
Day 5 Durban
- Golfers: Morning tee off at Durban Country Club/Beachwood/Zimbali.
- Leisure guests: Morning tour of Durban, a visit to the botanical gardens and a coastal lunch.
- Dinner en route to Hluhluwe.
A diverse and interesting city to explore. Ride on horseback down The Golden Mile, the city’s beachfront, which features clean sand and the clear beautiful water of the Indian Ocean. Shop at the Victoria Street Market, which opened in 1870 and has the feel of a city which is home to the largest Indian population outside of India in the world. Tour the Moses Mabhida Stadium, one of the host sites for the 2010 World Cup, and open to the public on non-game days. Take a ride through the vibrant city streets on a colorfully decorated rickshaw, which is a preferred mode of transportation, into Central Durban and sample the array of dining and nightlife options, including the sparkling Suncoast casino.
The Durban Botanic Gardens (Est. 1849) is currently Africa’s oldest surviving botanic garden and remains a national and local City asset actively contributing to plant conservation and plant-based education. The Durban Botanic Gardens Trust was established in 1993 to support the Gardens key strategic areas in biodiversity, culture, education, heritage, horticulture, people and plants, and research.
Durban Country Club
Par 72 6157m
Built by George Waterman and fellow professional golfer Laurie Waters, the Durban Country Club was established in 1922 and has a proud history. The difficulties these men faced were immense as all earth-moving had to be done manually, giant sand dunes were flattened and dense bush and trees chopped down and carted away. Renowned for its classic Cape Dutch architecture, lush vegetation, undulating fairways, sand dunes and beautiful setting overlooking the Indian Ocean, the club has been the venue of choice for many an important celebration in its rich history. Signature Hole: 3rd - par 5 - 468m A tee shot from the highest point on the course into a valley below, completely exposing the drive to the ocean gusts. Trees on the right of the straightaway hole need to be avoided as well as the large fairway bunker on the landing area to the left.
Par 72 6016m
The seaside layout of Beachwood has deservedly received accolades for its immaculate conditioning. Originally designed by Sid & Jack Brews in 1930, it has always been famed for its narrow fairways and indigenous trees. When Beachwood amalgamated with Durban Country Club in the late 1990s, Gary Player’s design team was asked to upgrade and redesign some of the holes while introducing additional hazards. The results are to be savoured as one plays a course with clever bunkering and water features with superb greens. The land follows rolling and undulating contours allowing fairways to follow natural valleys between high grassy banks, requiring precision shots and lay-ups.
Signature Hole: 6th - par 4 - 410m One of the most demanding holes, the 6th is set high in the dunes and doglegs left with a stream, bush and water hazard to be negotiated en route to the green.
Zimbali Country Club
Par 72 6524m
A truly spectacular golf estate offering sweeping panoramas of the surrounding hills, forest and ocean. Former South African PGA and British Open Champion Tom Weiskopf has remained true to his style and designed a course that caters to players of all abilities. Opened in 1998 it has firmly cemented itself as one of the area’s favourites. Being an ecoconscious estate, the tee boxes are often situated in slightly tricky positions to avoid environmental disturbances. The first 11 holes take you over rolling hills with ideal vantage points from which to enjoy the magnificent views. Holes 12 to 18 explore the Zimbali indigenous forest.
Day 6 Hluhluwe
- Morning game drive in the Hluhluwe Game Reserve.
- Dinner en route to Mpaka, Swaziland.
The park is the oldest proclaimed reserve in Africa. 96000 hectares in size (960 square kilometers) that's the same size as Netherlands Antilles while Hong Kong is 1104 square kilometers. Officially opened in 1895 as a Park.
Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Park is the only state run park in Kwazulu Natal that is home to the African Big 5. The park is world re known for its conservation efforts and history. The Umfolozi was previously used as King Shaka's private hunting grounds. The conservation efforts have contributed to this park having the largest population of White Rhino in the world.
Day 7 Swaziland
- Golfers: Morning tee off at the Royal Swazi Sun.
- Leisure guests: Morning game drive in Mkhaya Reserve. Visit Swazi Candles and Mantenga Cultural Village with shopping.
- Dinner en route to Malelane, South Africa.
Mkhaya Game Reserve
Mkhaya is all about intimate encounters with some of Africa's icons. All travel within the reserve is solely guided, by open Land Rovers or on foot, providing superb photographic opportunities and probably the best chance of seeing Black Rhino in the wild in Africa today.
Named after the Senegalia (Acacia) nigrescens tree once prolific across the lowveld, ‘Mkhaya’ also aptly means ‘home’ derived from the fact that this valuable hardwood is the chosen tree for structural building in Swaziland. Knobthorn trunks have been incorporated in some of Stone Camp’s structures.
A trip to Mkhaya is a trip into Real Africa - a soul enriching, quality experience you'll never forget.
Royal Swazi Sun
Par 72 6166m
This spectacular championship course is one of the most scenic locations found in the world. Opened in 1966, it has been laid out on the slopes of the Lebombo Range that curves gently down into the valley. The first nine holes are comparatively level but the second nine fully exploits the mountainous terrain. Challenging features include lakes, gullies thick with vegetation, out-of-bound areas running close to fairways, swirling breezes, clusters of magnificent trees and indigenous plants and wickedly sited bunkers – one is so steep it requires steps to facilitate access.
Day 8 Malelane
- Golfers: Morning tee off at Leopard Creek/White River/Mbombela.
- Leisure guests: Morning game drive in the Kruger Park with lunch and shopping.
- Dinner en route to Witbank.
Kruger National Park
Steeped in legend and history, the iconic Kruger National Park in South Africa is waiting for you to explore its vast landscapes and spectacular African wildlife. Where nearly 2 million hectares of unrivaled diversity of life forms fuses with historical and archaeological sights - this is real Africa.The world renowned park offers a wildlife experience that ranks with the best in Africa.
Leopard Creek Country Club
This ultra-exclusive world-class facility is the brainchild of magnate Johan Rupert and, as can be expected, no expense was spared. Bordered to the north and the west by the picturesque Crocodile River and the Kruger National Park, the course represents African golf at its best with indigenous bushveld bordering the immaculate fairways and greens. Innovative architectural and landscaping techniques ensure the course is naturally protected from animals, while lakes and small streams divert through the development to create scenic vistas and interesting golf strategies. Hazards take a new dimension for much of the water is home to the magnificent creatures for which the river is named…crocodiles.
Signature hole: 13th - par 5 - 505m Here the green is right on the edge of the river but 32m above the water level offering magnificent views into the Kruger Park.
White River Country Club
Par 72 6036m
Naturally adapted to the valley floor upon which it lies, White River is located at the feet of several private nature reserves. Such is the beauty of the course that holes 7 and 11 have been compared to the likes of Augusta. Opened in 1924, it was designed by Gary Player and Reg Taylor. The long, snaking river that runs through the course is the defining feature and is home to an astounding array of flora and fauna.
Signature hole: 5th - par 3 - 138m: This hole calls for an accurate tee shot over the river onto a gently sloping green.
Day 9 Pretoria - See you soon
- 07h00 Enjoy breakfast as the train departs for Pretoria.
- 10h00 Arrive at journey’s end at Rovos Rail Station.
Call us on 0800 756 7715 or Get a quote