February and Easter Steam Festivals in South Africa

Posted on 8 February 2021

Sandstone Estates is hosting two riveting steam festivals for railfans to enjoy.

Walking tours of the movie-set friendly farm, complete with 30km of narrow-gauge rail track, remains part of the timeless attractions of this highly productive farm. Sublime vistas of the surrounding Maluti Mountains of Lesotho, unique vintage steam and heritage museum, and highly productive farmland, toiled by a team of 36 working oxen, are just some of the many attractions to be embraced by all age groups.

‘Sandstone Estates is a marvel for steam enthusiasts from all over the world. Working oxen with wagons. Just north of Ficksburg, the cherry capital of South Africa, in the Eastern Free State. Authentic railway stations. Cosmos fields. Cornfields. Sunflower fields. Pristine farming estate.’ This is how visitors to the Steam Festivals at Sandstone Estates in South Africa have described their experiences over the past twenty years.

Bookings now open for:

  1. 26 to 28 February 2021 Sandstone Steam Festival – highlights include: Train rides all day from 10am 
  1. 2 to 5 April 2021 Sandstone Steam Festival – highlights to include:

Train rides all day from 10am.

The Mountain Wanderer train to run daily, at 15h30, for two hours.

Entrance fees comprise:

R230 per person, R145 per child under 12 years of age – includes all train rides, starting from 10am daily.

Call 051 933 2235 for enquiries and visit www.sandstone-estates.com for further details.

Steam and military indulgences at Sandstone photographed by James Lee Attwell

Facts about Sandstone – and big news for next year:

The Sandstone Heritage Trust in the Eastern Free State of South Africa has the largest collection of 2ft narrow gauge locomotives in the world and has been operational for 20 years.

In order to showcase its exciting line-up of 2ft narrow gauge locomotives, a special event will be held at Sandstone Estates in April 2022.

It will essentially be a world-record attempt where no less than 6 x 2ft narrow gauge Garratt locomotives will be working together as one to provide a spectacular train in an effort to break the world record.

NGG16A number 155 built-in 1968. Image: Supplied

The locomotives to be used are, NGG11 number 52, built-in 1919, NGG13 number 49 built-in 1928, NGG16 number 88 built-in 1936. NGG16 number 113 built-in 1939, NGG16 number 153 built-in 1968, and the NGG16A number 155 built-in 1968, pictured above.

The road to Sandstone – and the impressive Sandstone Railway track. Image: Supplied

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