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Uncover the Natural Beauty of Southern Africa

Starts: Johannesburg, South Africa
Finishes: Johannesburg, South Africa

Visit: Johannesburg, Maun, Sadibas, Maun, Kakoaka, Victoria Falls, Dahlia, Chitofa, Rietpoort, Phalaborwa, Johannesburg

Accommodation: Moderate

Activity: Hiking, Safari, Waterfalls, Wildlife

Overview

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Save $250 on this trip

Discover the allure of southern Africa as you roam from the golden plains of the world-famous Kruger National Park and the awe-inspiring Victoria Falls to the watery wonderland of the Okavango Delta and the teeming game parks of Botswana. Whether it's spotting the Big Five, relaxing by dreamy lagoons, experiencing tribal village life or cavorting near raging waterfalls, this adventure tour will fill your memories with the wonders of the African south.Trip HighlightsCruise the waterways of the Okavango DeltaAdmire sweeping views of the Blyde River CanyonBe blown away by the power of Victoria FallsSafari through the savanna of Kruger National ParkTravel along the Chobe River at sunsetEnjoy a game drive on the fringe of the Kalahari DesertSpot rhinos in the Khama Rhino SanctuaryTrip InformationStart: Johannesburg, South AfricaFinish: Johannesburg, South AfricaGroup size: Min 1 , Max 16Ages: Min 18Included ActivitiesAfrican Ivory Route - Cultural DinnerBlyde River CanyonChobe - River cruiseHwange National Park - Game driveKhama Rhino Sanctuary - Evening game driveKruger Park - Game driveMatopos - 4x4 Game DriveMaun - Local village visitNata Pan TripOkavango Delta - Mokoro trips & bushwalksVisit Victoria FallsTrip NotesThis trip finishes upon arrival in Johannesburg on Day 17. Please do not book any flights until after 10pm this evening.

Highlights

    • Cruise the waterways of the Okavango Delta
    • Admire sweeping views of the Blyde River Canyon
    • Be blown away by the power of Victoria Falls
    • Safari through the savanna of Kruger National Park
    • Travel along the Chobe River at sunset
    • Enjoy a game drive on the fringe of the Kalahari Desert
    • Spot rhinos in the Khama Rhino Sanctuary

Trip Details

The Trip

Product Code: 128057
Accommodation: Moderate
Guide Language: english

Starts: Johannesburg, South Africa
Finishes: Johannesburg, South Africa
Duration: 17 days
Physical rating: Basic

Includes

  • Meals: 14 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 13 dinners
  • Accommodation: Bush camp (no facilities) (2 nts), Camping (with facilities) (13 nts), Hotel (1 nt)
  • Transport: 4x4, Mokoro, Overland vehicle

Excludes

  • Visa
  • Optional activities
  • A trip kitty of ZAR5605.00
  • Emergency funds: US$400
  • Travel insurance is compulsory
  • Please budget for additional meals and expenses: USD 300.00
  • If you're happy with the services provided, a tip - though not compulsory - is appropriate

Price

Price person (sharing double) $2645 ($156/day)

Deposit:

$250 per person for bookings made 57 days or more prior to departure

Full Amount for bookings made less than 57 days prior to departure

Cancellation: Super Strict

Trip Notes

Price does not include airfare (to the Trip start & from the end location)

Trip Price may include accommodation, transport/transfer, activities, services of a professional guide & more. (Please refer to the include/excludes section for details)

Tour packages spare you the hassles of trip planning, a la carte booking, organizing and managing the logistics at a foreign location.

Itinerary

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Day 1: Begin the journey in Johannesburg, the commercial centre of South Africa

Sawubona! Welcome to South Africa.

Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6pm on Day 1.

You can arrive at any time as there are no activities planned until this important meeting; please ask the hotel reception where it will take place. If your flight arrives too late, we recommend that you consider arriving a day early and book a night's accommodation prior to the trip so you are able to attend. If you are going to be late please inform the hotel reception. We'll be collecting your kitty, insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting so please ensure you have all details on hand to provide to your leader.

Johannesburg is a sprawling city of remarkable contrasts. In the townships, mansions stand alongside tin shacks and there are as many green parks on the outskirts of the city as there are conglomerations of concrete in the centre. This is a good place to spend a couple of days to get an insight into South Africa's history, and it's a great base for exploring the rest of the country.

Optional Activities
  • Apartheid Museum - ZAR75
  • Gold Reef City and Heritage mine tour - ZAR360
  • Museum Africa - ZAR40
  • Art Gallery - ZAR60
Meals Included
  • 1 Breakfast
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 nt)

Day 2: Cross the border into Botswana to witness the success of the Khama Rhino Sanctuary

Leaving South Africa behind, cross the border into Botswana and travel toward the Khama Rhino Sanctuary (600 km, approx 8-10 hrs).

Situated on the edge of the vast Kalahari Desert, the Khama Rhino Sanctuary is a result of local efforts to convert a former hunting area into a conservation project. Built to protect Botswana's only remaining populations of both black and white rhinos, the sanctuary is also home to other wildlife including zebras, giraffes, leopards, ostriches and wildebeest, which have all moved in and can be seen around the many natural waterholes. Visiting this project benefits local communities, as well as contributing to the protection of the highly endangered white rhinoceros.

Head out on a dusk game drive to see the rhinos when they are at their most active before returning to camp.

Included Activities
  • Khama Rhino Sanctuary - Evening game drive
Meals Included
  • 1 Breakfast
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 nt)

Day 3: Head north towards Maun, gateway to Botswana's famous Okavango Delta

Our destination today is Maun (520 km, approx 7-8 hrs).

Maun is the gateway to one of the world's most renowned and complex ecosystems, the Okavango Delta.

Formed by the Okavango River as it flows from the highlands of Angola down to a basin on the edge of the Kalahari Desert, the Okavango Delta is unlike anything else in the world. The river has no outlet from the desert and spreads out into thousands of small streams to form a wilderness that is totally unspoilt. The 16,000 sq km maze of wetlands is a wonderland of clear meandering waterways, green islands, lush plains and prolific wildlife. The delta is filled with a diversity of flora and fauna that includes hippos, crocodiles, elephants and the big cats. However, it's not for the game that we come as it can't always be found. The delta is about exploring one of the world's most fascinating ecosystems.

Camp on the outskirts of town at a simple campsite with shared facilities.

Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 nt)

Days 4-5: Traverse the Okavango delta in a mokoro, a traditional dugout canoe

Traverse the waterways by mokoro, a traditional dugout canoe navigated by friendly local 'polers'. With luck, you might spot some of the delta's unusual wildlife and prolific birdlife. Spend time exploring the maze of lagoons, lakes and streams on foot, led by experienced and knowledgeable guides.

Camp on a remote island in the heart of the wilderness. Dig a bush toilet and go without a shower, it's all part of the Okavango experience. At night, the sounds of the African bush are the only things you will hear - a true wilderness experience!

Wake up early the following morning and venture out on a sunrise walk hoping to catch a glimpse of some elephants and Cape buffalo. Returning to camp for breakfast, take the rest of the day to relax, take a swim or test your poling skills before heading out for an afternoon walk or perhaps another mokoro trip - the choice is yours.

Included Activities
  • Okavango Delta - Mokoro trips & bushwalks
Accommodation
  • Bush camp (no facilities) (2 nts)

Day 6: Visit a rural village to learn firsthand about the local way of life before returning to Maun

After taking down our camp, take the mokoro back to the poling station before transferring back to Maun (60 km, approx 2-3 hrs).

Visit a local rural village for an insight into life in the Okavango Delta.

Camp on the outskirts of town at a simple campsite with shared facilities.

Included Activities
  • Maun - Local village visit
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 nt)

Day 7: Head for the plains and waterways of Chobe National Park

Head to Chobe National Park (620 km, approx 8-9 hrs).

Botswana's first national park, Chobe, is perhaps best known for its high concentration of elephants, which can often be seen swimming in the Chobe River. The river also attracts wallowing hippos, a variety of birdlife, crocodiles sunning themselves by the water's edge, and cheetahs and lions which come down to drink.

Enjoy a sunset cruise on the Chobe River, a very relaxing way to spend the afternoon.

Included Activities
  • Chobe - River cruise
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 nt)

Days 8-9: Admire the incredible torrent of white water at Victoria Falls

Travel on to Victoria Falls (Approximately 100kms, 2-3 hours). Cross the border into Zimbabwe in time to have lunch on the banks of the Zambezi.

The Victoria Falls are an enormous curtain of water, about a mile wide, falling 108 m into a narrow gorge below. In the wet season, the spray created can rise up an incredible 400 m and the falls are an impressive raging torrent. The spray from the falls can sometimes be seen from kilometres away. It's no wonder that the local name Mosi oa Tunya means the 'smoke that thunders'. In the dry season, the view of the falls is unobstructed by spray and it's possible to see little islets in the river below.

Visit the magnificent Victoria Falls.

Responsible Travel Note:
During your visit to the Victoria Falls area you may notice businesses offering an optional 'Walk with the Lions' experience. Professional wildlife conservation organisations, including Born Free and the World Society for Protection of Animals (WSPA), advise that habituating lions to humans can shorten their life and may result in lion-human conflict issues. While there is some merit in the argument that the money that you pay for the activity goes towards lion research, we feel that the negative impacts on the lions' rehabilitation far outweigh this.

As this is a combination trip, your group leader and the composition of your group may change at this location.

There will be a group meeting to discuss the next stage of your itinerary, meet your new fellow travellers, and collect the next part of your kitty.

Included Activities
  • Visit Victoria Falls
Optional Activities
  • Canoe trail - USD140
  • Flying fox - USD40
  • Gorge swing - USD90
  • Helicopter flight (12 mins) - USD140
  • Helicopter flight (25 mins) - USD275
  • Jet boat - USD95
  • Whitewater rafting (full day) - USD140
  • Whitewater rafting (half day) - USD140
  • Village & township tour - USD50
  • Bungee jumping - USD130
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (2 nts)

Day 10: Set out for a 4x4 game drive through the plains and wetlands of Hwange National Park

Leave Vic Falls behind and head to Hwange National Park. (Approximately 150kms, 3-4 hours depending on traffic).
Hwange National Park became the royal hunting grounds of the Ndebele warrior-king Mzilikazi in the early 19th century and was set aside as a national park in 1929. Today, Hwange boasts a tremendous selection of wildlife with over 100 species of mammals and nearly 400 bird species. The elephants of Hwange are world famous and the park's elephant population is one of the largest in Africa.

Explore the park in open 4x4 vehicles.

Included Activities
  • Hwange National Park - Game drive
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 nt)

Days 11-12: Explore the country's second largest city before heading out to Matobo National Park

This morning we make tracks for Matobo. (Approximately 380kms, 6-7 hours drive)

Make a short detour through the town of Bulawayo, before heading to our camp for the next 2 nights.

Known locally as the 'City of Kings', Bulawayo is Zimbabwe's second largest city and has a very interesting historical past.

In Bulawayo, stay in a campground with shared facilities - upgrades are available.

Home to a large population of black and white rhinoceros that can be tracked on foot, Matobo National Park is also the site of the grave of Cecil John Rhodes, the founder of Rhodesia and the De Beers diamond company. The Matopos area has great spiritual and cultural significance to the local people and there are many sites within the park where important ceremonies still take place.

The following day we head out on a full day game drive through Matobo National Park.

Included Activities
  • Matobo - 4x4 Game Drive
Meals Included
  • 1 Lunch
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (2 nts)


Day 13: Journey on to Nata and set up camp on the edge of the Makgadikgadi Salt Pans

Up early this morning we hit the road for Nata. (Approximately 380kms, 6-7 hours drive depending on border crossing).

Nata is a small town located close to the Makgadikgadi Salt Pans - some of the largest salt flats in the world, covering around 12,000 sq km.

This afternoon you have the opportunity to explore the pans in open vehicles.

Surrounded by the Kalahari Desert the pans are naturally dry and salty for a large part of the year. During this time the arid landscape has an eerie feel to it as heat mirages disorientate the senses. However they are seasonally covered with water and grass and as soon as the rains hit become a refuge for migratory birds and animals.
Our campsite tonight is situated on the edge of the Makgadikgadi Salt Pans which makes up one of the largest salt pans in the world covering some 12,000sq km.

Facilities include a Restaurant, Swimming pool, Gift Shop and Bar/lounge area. 

Included Activities
  • Nata Pan Trip
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 nt)

Day 14: Head towards Blouberg and camp in South Africa's Limpopo Province

Up bright and early we have a long drive ahead as we make tracks for Blouberg ( approx. 600km, 10hrs ).
We should arrive at our camp late this afternoon.

The camp is situated in South Africa’s Limpopo Province and offers a unique cultural experience. Located at the base of the mountain, where no roads exist due to its rugged and inaccessible nature, it is home for a small community of the Hananwa people who still lead a very traditional lifestyle.

On arrival stretch your legs for a short walk with a local guide. Following paths along the base of the Blouberg Mountains, hear stories of a fascinating community, some of whom still follow ancient traditions. The first stop is at a deserted Lutheran missionary village (Bochum) where you will get an understanding of the cross-cultural dynamics of the area.

Proceed to local village taverns (called shebeens) where locals will provide an evening meal, giving you an opportunity to discover traditional meals like mazie and watermelon (Thopi), chicken-based stews (Malana) and a green vegetable called marogo. Take the opportunity to try the traditionally brewed beer.

Please note that this experience offers limited options for vegetarians. Ask your leader about organising an alternative.

Included Activities
  • African Ivory Route - Cultural Dinner
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 nt)

Days 15-16: Travel through the expansive savanna and rolling hills of the spectacular Kruger NP

This morning we make our way towards the Kruger National Park (350 km, approx 8hrs).

One of the largest game reserves in Southern Africa, Kruger National Park is home to over 500 bird species, 100 species of reptile and 150 mammal species, including the Big Five and the endangered African wild dog.
Our wildlife experience begins as soon as we enter the park. We head straight into prime game viewing areas where we hope to catch a glimpse of some of the amazing animals found here.

Rise early and have a light breakfast of coffee and rusks before embarking on a morning game drive. Most of the day will be spent game viewing, bird watching and stopping at various waterholes and viewpoints.

Take an additional optional night drive with the park guide to spot nocturnal animals and perhaps even a night-time predator or two.

Our campground within the park has shared facilities and hot and cold water.

Included Activities
  • Kruger Park - Game drive
Optional Activities
  • Kruger Park - Night game drive - ZAR220
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (2 nts)

Day 17: Take in stunning panoramas from the viewpoint over the incredible Blyde River Canyon

Transfer back to Johannesburg (600 km, approx 8-9 hrs). There's plenty of time to stop and explore along the way. Take in amazing views at the viewpoint over the awesome Blyde River Canyon.

This trip finishes on arrival in Johannesburg at our finish point hotel. No accommodation is provided for tonight, but we are able to book you additional accommodation in Johannesburg. Please ask at time of booking.

Please don't book any international flights until after 10pm this evening.

Included Activities
  • Blyde River Canyon

See
South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, South Africa Johannesburg, Maun, Sadibas, Maun, Kakoaka, Victoria Falls, Dahlia, Chitofa, Rietpoort, Phalaborwa, Johannesburg
Do
Hiking, Safari, Waterfalls, Wildlife , Canyoning, River & Canal Cruising, Off-road Auto & 4x4, Museums & Expositions, Parks & Nature Reserves, Waterfalls, dugout canoe, african elephant, indigenous tribes, Camping

Availability