A steam train to Cullinan for Mother's Day

mother's day ideas

As SA Men we stand together like brothers, and as with any family, there are usually one or two brothers who are too busy or too distracted with their hectic lives to remember Mother’s Day on the 10th of May. But that’s what we’re here for; we’ve got your back. If you don’t have anything planned yet for this special person in your life, why not consider an all-day vintage train ride to Cullinan? Get everyone involved and treat Mom to a special day out this Mother’s Day.

Friends of the Rail

Take a step back in time to when horses, carts, and rail were the only modes of transport. Enjoy the excitement of traveling in a fully functional vintage train been driven on by the power of steam. This experience is made possible by a club of rail enthusiasts called The Friends of the Rail, who thrive on restoring and maintaining heritage steam trains. One of their aims is to provide the public with a vintage experience of travelling under steam, as was the norm in days gone by.

The Friends of the Rail have their own private train station, providing a truly vintage Pretoria railway experience.

The fun starts as soon as you step onto the train’s platform and walk through the cars to find your seat, with interiors classically restored and an ageing feel of wooden window frames and benches. The windows can be opened, and allow fresh bushveld air into the car, which adds to the nostalgia of travelling across the African countryside by steam-train. The vintage experience is definitely one to be shared with the whole family, especially Mom. Many of the machines maintained by The Friends of the Rail are over sixty years old and have been restored to perfect working order.

Mom’s big day

Your vintage train will be expected to depart at 08:00am on Sunday the 10th May from Hermanstad Station in Pretoria. There is plenty of secure parking and a shop at the station which sells souvenirs and refreshments. The train ride to Cullinan is expected to take approximately 3 hours and 15 minutes. There are sometimes delays due to routine maintenance on the line, but these delays are usually not too bad.

When arriving in Cullinan you have the chance of spending the day exploring this historic diamond town and will be able to have lunch in one of the restaurants (it may be a good idea to book before arriving), or you can make use of the braai facilities provided nearby. Make sure you hang around for a bit after disembarking, as the ash is cleared form the train and it undertakes its 3-point-turn to get ready for the return journey to Hermanstad later that afternoon. With the train staff’s permission you may get a chance to look inside the train drivers cab.

The train is then due to leave Cullinan at 15:15pm with an expected arrival time back in Hermanstad of 18:15.

How to book a vintage steam train experience to Cullinan

Booking can be done through the Friends of the Rail website. For further details on your very special Mother’s vintage day out, take a look here and explore what to expect and what to take with you. Enjoy Mother's Day