Lonely Planet Writer

Arrive on safari in style with this new luxury sleeper train that travels through Zimbabwe

There is no doubt that Africa has boundless beauty, with one of the most popular activities proving to be stepping out into the wilds to experience life on safari. And now, people in the UK can take part in an inclusive package that flies them to Africa before allowing them to travel on a luxury sleeper train to arrive on safari in style.

A sleeping cabin onboard The Stimela Star.
A sleeping cabin onboard The Stimela Star. Image by Imvelo Safari Lodges / Expert Africa

Called The Stimela Star, the train can be experienced as part of UK-based African travel agent Expert Africa’s ten-day Yellow Billed Hornbill Safari in Zimbabwe. The experience begins at Gorges Lodge, an accommodation which overlooks the Batonka Gorge, where guests first have the opportunity to explore the area around Victoria Falls, before boarding the train at Victoria Falls Station, where they will depart before being served dinner, and drinks (that includes coffees and liqueurs) and be given a historical talk on the railways of the area. Visitors can then sit back and soak in the atmosphere on-board the decadent train, which features carefully restored carriages that date back to the 1950s.

The experience includes the chance to visit the famous Victoria Falls. Image by Nick Dale/ EyeEm/Getty Images

Sleeping up to 23 passengers in twin or single compartments, the train features an elegant dining car, as well as a lounge car with a fully-serviced bar. Guests can retire to their cabins for the night or sit and watch the rails as the train meanders towards Hwange National Park, with breakfast being served at 7am the next morning. From there, the group transfers to the Elephant Express, an open-sided tram car that allows for wildlife viewing as they head to the south of the park for a four-day safari experience.

Guests can dine and enjoy drinks while watching the rails. Image by Imvelo Safari Lodges / Expert Africa

“This is a relaxing and stylish way to arrive on safari, and comes highly recommended,” said Chris McIntyre, managing director of Expert Africa. The experience with Expert Africa starts from £4,596 (€5,260) person based on two people sharing, and includes return flights from London, full board and accommodation, some drinks, all game activities and laundry.

More information is available at the Expert Africa website.