Sightseeing

ID #5309

Heritage Railway Association of Southern Africa.

A body whose vision is to benefit and support its members and oversight of the heritage rail tourism industry in Southern Africa.

History: England embarked on a railway boom at the start of the 19th Century but it took a few years for South Africa to realize its potential. In October 1845 the Cape of Good Hope Railway Society was formed in London to build the first railway line in South Africa. However this company did very little. On 26 June 1860 the first official train journey on South African soil commenced when Henry Jacobs, together with 800 passengers, made the first trip between Market Place and Point in Durban. A low-key event launched the Cape Colony’s railway service from Cape Town to Eerste Rivier on February 13 1862. The dates on which such lines were opened are as follows:

o Durban-Point (3 miles)     26 June 1860
o Cape Town-Eerste Rivier (34 miles)    13 February 1862
o Eerste Rivier-Stellenbosch (14 miles)  1 May 1862
o Stellenbosch-Wellington (43 miles)    4 November 1864
o Durban-Umgeni (5 miles)     4 April 1867
o Cape Town Docks-CT Station (11 miles)  11 May 1875
o Port Elizabeth-Kommando Kraal (Addo) – 50 miles 26 July 1875
o Wellington-Tulbagh Road(48 miles)    1 September 1875
o Swartkops-Uitenhage (22 miles)   22 September 1875
o Tulbagh Road-Ceres Road (14 miles)   3 November 1875

Since then of course the sub-continent has been criss-crossed with other lines. Recently, changes in transport economics have resulted in closure of many lines. Some, such as those mentioned below, are now used only for tourism purposes.  Heritage Rail Operators include:

o Rovos Rail, Capital Park, Pretoria, Gauteng
o Friends of the Rail. Hermanstad, Pretoria, Gauteng
o Reefsteamers, Germiston, Gauteng
o Sandstone Heritage Trust, Ficksburg, Free State
o Sisonke Stimela, Creighton, Kwa-Zulu Natal

o Paton’s Country NG Railway, Ixopo, Kwa-Zulu Natal
o Umgeni Steam Railway, Inchanga, Kwa-Zulu Natal
o Port Elizabeth Apple Express, Eastern Cape
o Outeniqua Choo-Tjoe, George, Western Cape
o Outeniqua Power Van, George, Western Cape www.gardenroute.com/George-Garden-Route-South-Africa-Power-Van
o Hexpass Express, De Doorns, Western Cape
o Atlantic Rail, Cape Town, and
o Victoria Falls Steam Train Company, Zimbabwe

Museums include:

o SA National Steam and Railway Museum (SANRASM), Mogale City (Krugersdorp), Gauteng
o James Hall Museum of Transport, Johannesburg

o Selati Camp, Skukuza, Kruger National Park, Mpumalanga www.sanparks.org/parks/kruger/tourism/selatirest.php
o North-West Transport Museum, Klerksdorp, North-west Province
o The Big Hole, Kimberley
o Riebeeckstad Railway Museum, Welkom, Free State
o SA Armour Museum, Bloemfontein
o Weenen Museum, Kwa-Zulu Natal
o Natal Railway Museum, Hilton
o Old Railway Station Museum, “The Doll’s House”, Uitenhage, Eastern Cape
o Outeniqua Transport Museum, George, Western Cape
o Matjiesfontein Transport Museum, Karoo, Western Cape
o Kleinplasie @ Worcester Museum www.kleinplasie.co.za
o Gospel Express, Vinkrivier Station, Robertson, Overberg
o Nababeep Railway Museum, Northern Cape
o TransNamib Railway Museum, Windhoek, Namibia

Contct:

o Apple Express   www.appleexpresstrain.co.za
o Atlantic rail   www.atlanticrail.co.za
o Blue Train   www.bluetrain.co.za
o Brankman Ndayi McAll www.bnm.co.za
o Cape Railway Enthusiasts Association     http://ilvatech.myweb.absamail.co.za
o Friends of the Rail   www.friendsoftherail.co.za
o Gautrain   www.gautrain.co.za
o Gospel Express  www.ccsa.org.za/gospelexpress
o Helderberg Vintage Railway www.hvrmanagement.co.za
o Hexpas Eco Trek  www.tour-route-62.co.za/kexpas_ecotrek.htm
o Ingwe Municipality  www.sisonke.gov.za
o Metrorail   www.metrorail.co.za
o Natal Railway Museum www.mgd.co.za/gc/GC14QAG.htm
o Paton’s Country Narrow Guage Railway
www.futurenet.co.za/pcngr
o PRASA   www.sarcc.co.za
o Premier Classe  http://premierclasse.co.za
o Railroad Association  www.rra.co.za
o Rail Safety Regulator  www.rsr.co.za
o Railways Africa Magazine www.railwaysafrica.com
o Reefsteamers   www.reefsteamers.co.za
o Rovos Rail   www.rovosrail.co.za
o Sandstone Heritage Trust www.sandstone-estates.com
o SA Armour Museum  www.saarmourmuseum.co.za
o SA Rail Magazine  www.sarail-mag.co.za
o Shosholoza Meyl  www.shosholozameyl.co.za
o Skuys Communications www.skuyscommunications.co.za
o South Africa Heritage Resource Agency
www.sahra.org.za
o The Big Hole   www.debeersgroup.com
o Travel Route 62  http://appleexpresstrain.co.za
o Transnet Group  www.transnet.co.za
o Transnet Foundation  www.transnet.co.za/Tnetfoundation.aspx
o Transnet Freight Rail  www.transnet.net/Freightrail.aspx
o Umgeni Steam Railway www.umgenisteamrailway.co.za
o Victoria Falls Steam Train Company
www.steamtraincompany.com
o Waterval Boven Rail Club www.watervalboven.com

Contct:  Heritage Railway Association of Southern Africa
20 Tarn Avenue Lorraine 6070
Box 28519 Sunridge Park 6008
Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape, South Africa
Email: secretary@hrasa.co.za
Email: hrasa@skuys.co.za
Web: www.hrasa.co.za 

 

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Last update: 2014-02-15 14:07
Author: Alan McIver
Revision: 1.8

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