In this five part series Slow Train Through Africa with Griff Rhys Jones, comedian Griff Rhys Jones takes a trip along Africa’s colonial, old-fashioned railway system; immersing himself in the joy and frustration of travelling through this beautiful and beguiling continent using the most romantic method of transportation.
Along the way Rhys meets a man even more giggly and ebullient than he is in the labyrinthine city of Fes, and travels 1200 miles through Kenya and Tanzania on tracks that are relics left over from colonial days. He also boards Nyaturu; a vintage steam locomotive made in Glasgow and visits a college that trains young Zambians to become locomotive drivers. Over three years, they learn not only how to drive the train, but how to fix it if it breaks down and how to deal with elephants and buffalo on the track.
Rhys’ journey totals 7000 miles and, as he travels to unexpected places in deserts and forests, villages and cities, he finds out how the railway is used in the modern world, encounters some incredible wildlife and meets extraordinary people along the way.
Watch Slow Train Through Africa with Griff Rhys Jones from Sunday, 14 June at 17:00 on BBC Knowledge, channel 184 on DStv.