The train is an all inclusive luxury rail experience rooted in the nostalgia of a bygone era. This unique luxury rail restoration is an extension of the five-star Royal Livingstone Hotel. The train provides fine wining and dining as you travel through the picturesque Irwell Valley in Pullman style coaches which have been lovingly restored to their former glory.
The Royal Livingstone Express consists of 5 air-conditioned carriages, 2 dining cars, a kitchen car, lounge car, and an observation car and is pulled by either a 10th class 156 or a 12th class 204 locomotive. One of the dining cars, The Wembley, was built by the Birmingham Railway Carriage and Wagon Company, and went on display in London at the British Empire Exhibition in 1924. It was shipped to the Union of South Africa and entered service on 19th May 1926.
The Steam Locomotive, 156 is a 10th Class originally belonging to the largest private railway network in the world, Zambezi Sawmills Limited. It was used on the Mulobezi Line to pull logging carriages from the forests in Mulobezi to the railhead in Livingstone. David Shepherd, renowned wildlife artist, rescued the locomotive and totally renovated it, to its previous grandeur. He then donated it to National Heritage and Bushtracks has subsequently restored the locomotive to working order.
Bushtracks spent two years searching for carriages in order to operate this excursion. Rohan Vos of Rovos Rail South Africa, reputed to be 'the most luxurious train in the world', found five carriages which were purchased in December 2006. Rovos Rail also agreed to renovate the carriages to their former glory and work began on the 3rd January 2007.
This unique eco experience can be enjoyed from the comfort of your carriage whilst enjoying one of the most scenic railway passes in Southern Africa. Experience the wilderness, waterfalls, tunnels, flora and fauna with panoramic views.
For more information, contact Sun International Dreams on +27 11 217 5555. www.suninternational.com