Geoffs trains tours
22 March 2012
Zimbabwe and Zambia 2012
02 to 11 June 2012

We continue our journey across Africa with Garratts from Bulawayo in Zimbabwe to Livingstone in Zambia. Geoff' Cooke has run steam trains over
this route since 1986, and is without question the regional specialist.

The National Railways of Zimbabwe have advised that due to fire risk on fully dieselised lines, future tours may be restricted to the months
between December and April (This is the rainy season, reducing the fire risk but also those classic winter morning photographs). Railway
management remains committed to our tours, but there can be no guarantee these unique, large and costly machines will be retained in working
order beyond next year.

If you want to see the Garratts in action, join this tour!
enthusiasts and photographers
with options for their partners

We will work hard to ensure that a good
number of runpasts and other
photographic opportunities are offered,
it is not the policy of Geoff's Trains to
include excessive runpasts that
projedice good timekeeping or relations
with services providers.

Participants should be able to board and
leave trains, and walk some distance,
without assistance. It is essential to
advise us if you have any pre-existing
disability of medical condition that may
affect your participation.

All nights will be spent in hotels that are
a minimum 3 star standard offering
en-suite facilities.

Most meals are included.

We use professional and fully insured
ground tour operators, but their vehicles
may be older than those we would
expect in Europe.

Please contact us if you are unsure if
this tour will be suitable for you.
would like to see a little of Zimbabwe
away from the railway, we can arrange
the following tours

Only available with the nine night hotel
accommodation option.

These are recommended tours, others
are available - please ask.

03 June
Bulawayo
City tour, including the Natural History
Museum, Art Gallery and markets.
Free
for one person per couple booking.
Otherwise per person - US$10.
Transport and guide only,
all entrance fees extra.

04 June
Matobo Hills
Full day tour to the Matobo Hills National
Park. Includes a picnic lunch.
Free
for one person per couple booking.
Otherwise per person - US$90
Minimum of 4 needed to confirm

05 June
Hwange game drive
Travel with our coach  from Bulawayo to
the Hwange Safari Lodge this morning.
No charge.
Join a game drive at the Hwange Safari
Lodge this afternoon.
Free
for one person per couple booking.
Otherwise per person - US$50

06 June
Hwange to Victoria Falls
Leave the hotel after breakfast and travel
by road to Victoria Falls.
No charge.

07 June
Victoria Falls
Morning tour of the Victoria Falls,
including the Rail Forest, Main Falls,
Railway Bridge and Big Tree. End your
tour with a visit to a craft market.
Free
for one person per couple booking.
Otherwise per person - US$45

08, 09 and 10 June
Victoria Falls
There are a number of options, including
rafting, elephant rides, lion walks and
full day tours to Chobe in Botswana.
Please ask.

09 June
Join the sunset boat cruise this
afternoon.
Free
for one person per couple booking.
Otherwise per person - US$45

Please note
The free offers listed here must be
booked with the main tour. Later
bookings will be charged.
All tourist options are subject to
availability and no cash alternative can
be offered for services not taken up.

Nine nights accommodation.
Meals as described in the programme.
Transfers as described.
Participation in the steam charters described in the programme.
The services of Geoff Cooke as your tour manager.

Your tour does not include:
Air travel.
Gratuities.
Items of a personal nature such as drinks, phone calls and laundry.
Visas and national park entry.
Meals not detailed in the programme.

Useful information:

Flights: There is one daily flight from Johannesburg to Bulawayo, and one from Harare to Bulawayo.
The direct Johannesburg flight, operated by South Africa Airways, is recommended. If you wish, you
can fly from Johannesburg to Vic Falls on 01 June, and travel down to Bulawayo in our coach on the
morning of 02 June. This gives the benefit that you fly into and out of Victoria Falls airport. Extra costs
would be a night at Victoria Falls and the coach.

There are a number of flights from Victoria Falls, but your best option may be the South African
Airways flight direct to Johannesburg. This is at lunch time, and so connects well with most overnight
long-haul flights. There is also a BA / Comair flight at about the same time. Booking South African
Airways from London and including the regional flights may give you a good rate. If the Victoria Falls
flights are looking expensive, you can also consider flying from Livingstone airport in Zambia. It
requires an extra visa fro Zambia, but this is often offset by cheaper flights, of which there are three
every day. Airport transfers are no problem.

Dress code: Casual dress is appropriate. The temperature should be mild to warm, but there is
always a possibility of rain. A light weatherproof jacket is recommended.

Hotels: Geoff's Trains reserves the right to change hotels for one of a similar or better standard.

Health: The Zambezi Valley around Victoria Falls is a malarial area, precautions are recommended.
South Africa requires a current Yellow Fever certificate from anyone travelling from countries with even
a low Yellow Fever risk, including Zambia.

Booking deadline: Geoff's Trains makes every effort to confirm a tour as early as possible, and it is
not our policy to cancel a tour already confirmed. All tours are confirmed at least 60 days prior to
departure.

Detailed information will be sent to all participants about two weeks prior to the start date.

South African and regional residents wishing to join this tour should contact Geoff's Trains.

This tour is confirmed.

To book:

Click here for our booking form
Our booking conditions can be found here
If you have any questions, please click here

On receipt of your booking request, an invoice will be sent to you.
A deposit of 10% will be requested with the balance being due two months before the tour departs.
Bulawayo is the headquarters of
the Railway.

Bulawayo 1872
is a website that features the City
with an excellent selection of
articles, maps, photographs and
much more.
Tour cost
  Pounds Sterling
U S Dollars
With nine hotel nights
Per person sharing a twin or double room
£2,875
$4,600
Single room supplement
£424
$678
With five hotel nights and four nights on the train
Accommodation on the train is in museum coaches that do not have showers.
Bedding will be provided and meals will be in the dining car.
There is limited space that will only be reserved with a confirmed booking and deposit.
Per person
In a 2 berth coupe or 4 berth compartment
£2,577
$4,123
Your tour will be invoiced in Sterling to a British Bank unless you are in the American region, where
you will be invoiced in US Dollars to an American Bank
Prices may change due to foreign currency fluctuations and price increases
Single travellers can request to share a twin room, subject to availability
IMPORTANT

In some countries, you may
experience laws and standards
that might not be the same as you
are used to in the UK. We visit
countries with less advanced
infrastructure, an open yet cautious
mind and a flexible approach can
help your enjoyment of the
experience.

By their nature, preserved steam
locomotives and older diesel
electric locomotives are prone to
unexpected failure. Should this
occur, we will ask the service
supplier to substitute the most
appropriate alternative equipment
or service consistent with the
advertised programme.

The railways over which these
tours operate are often single track
with passing loops, possibly with
infrastructure maintained to a
lower standard than in the UK.  Any
delays or cancellations caused by
the failure of such plant and
machinery beyond the direct
control of Geoff's Trains will be
dealt with as quickly as possible,
but no compensation can be
offered for such failure or delay.
Our 2011 Zimbabwe Tour

Find a report here

Find photographs here

Our 2010 Zimbabwe Tour

The 2010 tour was a success.
Over 50 participants enjoyed a
journey that was completed as
planned, with the biggest problem
being poor weather

Find photographs of the tour here

Find a Blog report on the tour here

Buy a video of the tour from
Belhurst Productions here
Click the images below for more
information
Photography

Runpasts are arranged on all of
our chartered steam trains. We
arrange as many photo runpasts
as is practical for each day, with
some of them being repeated
more than once to satisfy stills and
video photographers.

There are many extra photographic
opportunities, and participants on
these tours are generally more
than satisfied with the quality and
quantity of their results.

Safety is paramount and you will
be asked to adhere to simple rules
that make the experience safe and
pleasant for all.
accommodation

Our train between Bulawayo and
Victoria Falls will include a first
class sleeper coach to provide
toilets and space in which to relax
away from the dining car.

A limited number of tour
participants may use this coach
overnight. This is possible at Dete
and Thomson Junction, but not at
Bulawayo or Victoria Falls.

The coach has three x 2 berth
coupe's, and four x 4 berth
compartments. Bedding and
meals will be provided by the
National Railways of Zimbabwe.
The coach will be used by all tour
participants during the day, and
you will not have exclusive use of
the accommodation when all
participants are on board.

The 1920's built balcony coach is
normally used for day trips. There
are no showers and whilst the
toilet, plumbing and lighting should
be functional, this cannot be
guaranteed.
Holiday Inn, Bulawayo. Extra night
  Pounds Sterling
 
Per person sharing a twin or double room. B&B
£44
$70
Single room supplement
£44
$70
Your tour will be invoiced in Sterling to a British Bank unless you are in the American region, where
you will be invoiced in US Dollars to an American Bank
Prices may change due to foreign currency fluctuations and price increases
Kingdom Hotel, Victoria Falls. Extra night
  Pounds Sterling
US Dollars
Per person sharing a twin or double room. B&B
£61
$92
Single room supplement
£44
$70
Your tour will be invoiced in Sterling to a British Bank unless you are in the American region, where
you will be invoiced in US Dollars to an American Bank
Prices may change due to foreign currency fluctuations and price increases
King George VI
Rehabilitation Centre
Bulawayo

Our 2010 and 2011 Zimbabwe tours
supported Bulawayo's King George VI
Centre. In 2010 we supported one child
for a year, in 2011 our donation paid the
school fees for two children from
destitute families. We also asked books
for the library, books being expensive to
buy in Zimbabwe.

We will once more support this worthy
cause in 2012, and again ask you to
bring a few books with you.

Watch the KGVI Christmas
message here.

To find out more about KG VI, click here.
Discounts apply for 2011 Africa Steam season participants
Road transfer from Victoria Falls to Bulawayo on 02 June
Leaving early morning, arriving about 15h00
  Pounds Sterling
US Dollars
Per person
£42
$68
available soon