18-Day South Africa
South Africa "Scenic Route" Code: SA18
2011 Price: € 1 395 pps + local payment of ZAR 1 600 Single supplement: € 90 pp
(valid Jan 2011 Dec 2011)
18 day small group participation cabin & camping safari
Group size max 12 people
Departs Johannesburg on Saturday at 06:30am
Ends Cape Town on Monday @ ±18:00pm
A wonderful journey through the Rainbow Nation. Camping, trekking, game viewing, historical and cultural visits through South Africa!
Mpumalanga Panorama Route - sight seeing
Kruger National Park - game drives
Swaziland - mountain walks
Zululand - game drives & cultural villages
Drakensberg mountains - mountain walks
Garden Route & Karoo - walks, ostriches and caves
Cape Town - Cape Point & Table Mountain
6nights in hotels / cabins and 11 nights camping
Use of camping equipment (except sleeping bags)
Transport in Safari Truck or Minibus
Meals as per itinerary
Day 1 JOHANNESBURG to MPUMALANGA
Departing from Johannesburg at 06:30am we head east towards Mpumalanga. A landscape characterised by mountains, panoramic passes, valleys, rivers, waterfalls and forests. We will camp the night in the old gold rush town of Pilgrims Rest, a living museum dating back to 1873. We explore the quaint town visit Mac Mac falls and God's window viewpoint. [ camping - L D ]Rhino snoozing in the Mkuzi NP, Zululand South Africa.
Day 2 & 3 KRUGER NATIONAL PARK
Big game country - exciting game drives provide us with excellent game viewing. Spot lion, elephant, rhino and other animals in one of the last African wildernesses. Early morning & afternoon game drives get us close to the wildlife. [ camping B L D ]
Day 4 KINGDOM OF SWAZILAND
The mountainous Kingdom of Swaziland, lead by King Mswati III, is one of 3 monarchies in Africa. Swazi's are proud of their traditional lifestyle & cultures. Malalotja borders on the Drakensberg escarpment and we explore the reserve on foot to enjoy the mountain scenery, rare birdlife, and the 95m high Malalotja waterfall. Overnight in log cabins with fantastic panoramic views. [ cabin B L D ]
Day 5 - 6 ZULULAND
After visiting craft markets near Mbabane, we re-enter South Africa. Mkuzi Game Reserve is a safe haven for the endangered black rhino. We have a full day to game drive and stop at waterhole hides and watch game come down to drink. In the afternoon we visit a local Zulu village to learn about their culture, traditions and lifestyle. [ camping B L D ]
Day 7 & 8 DRAKENSBERG MOUNTAINS
Moving further south to the base of the Drakensberg (Dragon Mountains). We have two nights here in chalets allowing time for walking along beautiful mountain stream paths, looking for Bushman rock paintings or just enjoying spectacular views. [ chalet B L D ]
Day 9 & 10 LESOTHO
We travel through the towering red sandstone cliffs of Golden Gate en route to Lesotho. Quaint villages and towns offer interesting stops along the way. We cross the border and head to southern Lesotho to our overnight chalets at Malealea. This lodge nestled in the mountains forms our base for two nights. The next morning we are up early and spend the day trekking with local guides and their ponies through the rugged mountains. [chalets BLD ]
Day 11 KAROO NP
Descending from the Lesotho highlands we make our way into the great Karoo. It covers most of central South Africa and is a vast semi desert. It has become famous for its sheep and ostrich farming industries, and roadside stalls selling handmade windmills. [guesthouse BL- ]
Day 12 ADDO ELEPHANT NP
A conservation success, Addo Elephant N.P. offers a unique wildlife area, famous for the Addo Elephants. We head out on game drives in search of elephant, black rhino, lion, buffalo and leopard. Evening viewing at the floodlit waterhole allows us to watch the nocturnal animals. [ camping BLD ]
Day 13 & 14 TSITSIKAMMA
Indigenous Tsitsikamma forests surround the campsite at Storms River mouth, and there are walks up the Storms River Gorge and along the rocky coastline. There is an option of the worlds highest bungi jump (own expense). Whales may be seen in season (July to November). [ camping BLD ]
Day 15 WESTERN CAPE
After visiting "The Heads" in Knysna, a town nestled on a tranquil lagoon we travel south along the Garden Route towards the Hottentots Holland Mountains. We stay in a UNESCO protected biosphere reserve, which has remained isolated and remarkably unspoilt so close to the larger towns of the Western Cape. We enjoy and afternoon walk in this wonderful wilderness area. [camping BLD ]
Day 16& 17 CAPE TOWN
Visit Stellenbosch, for wine tasting and a cellar tour. Explore Cape Town and the "mother city's" many attractions;, visit Cape Point, the Cape of Good Hope, Chapman's Peak drive, the harbour at Hout Bay, enjoy the famous beaches and the V&A Waterfront. Optional visit to Robben Island (own expense). Meals at a variety of local restaurants (own expense). [Lion's Head Lodge B - - ]
Day 18 TOUR ENDS - TRANSFERS
We climb Table Mountain in the morning admiring the views over Table bay and Cape Town. Spend the afternoon catching up on last minute curio shopping or just lazing on the beach absorbing the Cape's sunshine.Tour ends at +/-18:00pm.
PRE & POST TOUR ACCOMMODATION:
Due to the early departure time of this safari we recommend that you stay in Johannesburg the night before safari. Please indicate if you require assistance with airport transfers and hotel reservations.
All "South Africa Scenic Route" departures can be combined before the "Cape Town to Victoria Falls Explorer" to create a complete circular safari in Southern Africa.
DETAILED TOUR INFO
In a nutshell
A comprehensive introduction to the Rainbow Nation - a world in one country!
Exciting trip with culture, wildlife, adventure, walking, mountains and beaches.
Kruger NP, Swaziland, Zululand, Drakensberg, Garden Route and Cape Town.
Why travellers like this trip
Variety - a tour that covers so much of the African experience, from the game reserves to the vibe of Cape Town and everything along the way. A world in one country!
National Parks and wildlife areas - We visit 10 national parks en route ranging from the awesome Big 5 of Kruger NP to the unique penguins and fynbos in the Cape of Good Hope.
Culture and history - South Africa has a unique and interesting cultural diversity, which we experience through contact with local people as often as possible.
Scenery - breath-taking scenery along the entire route - a world in one country!
Small group - travelling in groups of up to 12 people creates a friendly, holiday atmosphere.
Walking - every opportunity to get out and walk in the areas such as Mpumalanga, Malolotja Mountains, Mkuzi GR, Drakensberg (Dragon mountains), Storms River and Tsitsikamma NP, climb Table Mountain. Walks are easy to moderate exertion and optional. Duration from 1 - 6 hours.
Adventure - activities available include: riding an ostrich, Cango caving, Bloukrans -highest bungi jump in the world!
Camping - 9 nights on safari we stay at designated campsites in national parks and towns. South African campsite facilities are generally very good. There are hot and cold showers, restaurants, washing facilities & laundries, post office/telephones, kiosks available at most of the campsites.
Your operator supplies all the camping equipment with the exception of your sleeping bag and pillow. The dome tents we use are 2.2 x 2.2 x 1.8 metres and putting them up or down takes only 5 minutes. Tents have built-in insect nets. We supply mattresses, which are about 5 cm thick, warm and comfortable. The camp chairs have a backrest.
Hotel - 4 nights are spent: 2 in a comfortable, but basic, hotel in a metropolitan area of Cape Town near the V&A Waterfront, and 2 in an hotel in Coffee Bay on the Wild Coast. All rooms are twin with en suite facilities.
Mountain cabin – 2 nights in the Drakensberg we stay in mountain chalets. Rooms are twin or quad sharing with shared ablutions.
Log cabins - 1 night in Malolotja (Swaziland) we stay in log cabins in the mountains. Rooms are triple and quad sharing with shared ablutions.
On foot - easy to moderate walks throughout the tour.
Vehicle - for longer distance travel, place to place, we use custom built safari trucks with 12 forward facing seats. Comfortable touring and good for game viewing. Large, sliding windows and viewing hatches give everyone a good view; or Toyota Hiace minibuses with 10 forward facing seats (roof rack and trailer for equipment and baggage). There are a couple of long days of travelling but the vehicles have a comfortable cruising speed. The emphasis of the trip is "getting out and doing things".
A local payment is required on this safari and this will be collected by ther tour leader on departure. This covers a portion of the local operational costs including entrance and park fees. This ensures that a major portion of your tour price goes directly into the country you are visiting, benefiting local communities and contributing to the conservation of the area.
An essential part of your safari is participation – from putting up your tent (while camping) or packing away in the morning to helping with meal preparation and cleaning up – it’s all part of your adventure and when everyone puts in a little effort the trip will run smoothly. Your tour leaders will do all the meal preparation but we do ask the clients to help with the washing up. Team spirit is part of the fun!
Craft shopping for carvings, candles, batiks, wirework, paintings and clothing, in Swaziland, Zululand and Knysna, is some of the best in Southern Africa.
We pride ourselves on giving very good healthy meals to our clients and will provide three meals per day, except 2 dinners and 2 lunches in Cape Town where we try out local restaurants.
The tour leaders do the shopping and meal planning for each group. He/she will always try to obtain fresh produce wherever possible. A rough idea of what these will consist of is: Breakfast - cereals or coffee and toast or the occasional fried breakfast, Lunch - cheese, cold meats, salads on bread or rolls, Dinner - braais (local barbecue), potjies (stews), stir fries etc. We use regular plates, cups and cutlery. All cooking and eating utensils will also be provided.
We do cater for special dietary requirements (e.g. vegetarian or allergies.)
We will supply fruit squash served with breakfast and tea or coffee served with breakfast and dinner. All other beverages will be for your own expense. We will not supply bottled drinking water although it is available at many shops on tour.
Anyone who is generally active and in good health should enjoy this trip. A combination of camping and basic accommodation makes for a comfortable tour.
Full itinerary with a couple of long driving days but also plenty of outdoors activity.
Everyone is asked to help out with the running of camp on tour. In other words if everyone spends a little time setting up camp, preparing meals and cleaning up then the tour will run smoothly and everyone will have a good time. Participation is the name of the game.
Things you should know
Includes park entrances
You will need a valid passport and visas for entry into Swaziland and re-entering South Africa. Consult the tour dossier for a more detailed list of visa requirements and consult with your travel agent or tour operator.
Common questions about this trip
What do I need to bring? A warm sleeping bag, comfortable clothes for warm days and cool evenings, walking shoes, a raincoat, hat and sunglasses, swimsuit, a small pair of binoculars also comes in very handy and most importantly - a sense of adventure!
Is it safe? South Africa, like any many countries, has it’s problems but your guide knows the country intimately and will endeavour to show you the best parts while looking after you. Be aware, but not paranoid, and you will have a great trip!
Do I need malaria tablets? Mpumalanga, Swaziland and Zululand (ie: first week of tour) is a limited risk malaria area and prophylactics are recommended.
Can I buy camera film? Film and other accessories will be available several times on tour. A camera with a zoom lens from wide angle to telephoto, 35-200mm, is advisable to capture both scenic and wildlife shots.
Can I wash my clothes on tour? There are coin-operated laundries available in the Drakensberg (day 7&8) and Storms River (day 11&12). There is also a laundry service available at the hotel on the Wild Coast (day 9&10)
RACK Price: (valid Jan 2011 Dec 2011)
€ 1 395 pps + local payment of ZAR 1 600
Single tent supplement: € 90 pp Single tent supplement is applicable to the camping nights
only. On accommodated nights clients will share with same gender client
2011 DEPARTURE DATES
15-Jan-11 - 01-Feb-11 CVg German
29-Jan-11 - 15-Feb-11 CV
12-Feb-11 - 01-Mar-11 CV
05-Mar-11 - 22-Mar-11 CVg German
19-Mar-11 - 05-Apr-11 CV
02-Apr-11 - 19-Apr-11 CV
16-Apr-11 - 03-May-11 CV
07-May-11 - 24-May-11 CVg German
21-May-11 - 07-Jun-11 CV
11-Jun-11 - 28-Jun-11 CV
25-Jun-11 - 12-Jul-11 CVg German
09-Jul-11 - 26-Jul-11 CV
30-Jul-11 - 16-Aug-11 CV
13-Aug-11 - 30-Aug-11 CVg German
27-Aug-11 - 13-Sep-11 CV
17-Sep-11 - 04-Oct-11 CV
01-Oct-11 - 18-Oct-11 CVg German
15-Oct-11 - 01-Nov-11 CV
05-Nov-11 - 22-Nov-11 CV
19-Nov-11 - 06-Dec-11 CVg German
03-Dec-11 - 20-Dec-11 CV
24-Dec-11 - 10-Jan-12 CV
* German: These tours have a German speaking translator/tour leader
* CV: All South Africa Scenic Route departures can be combined before the Cape Town to Victoria Falls Explorer to
create a complete circular safari in Southern Africa.