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Splendors of South Africa

Local Guide YES
Accomidations YES
Vacation Style Guided
Meals Included

Detailed Pricing

Destination Details

Splendors of South Africa & Victoria Falls

12 days from Cape Town to Johannesburg $3749.00

 

(not including airfare)

Map

Vacation Overview

This tour to South Africa—from the fascinating cities to the enthralling game drives and breathtaking scenery—is sure to offer you an experience of a lifetime. A highlight of your trip is the Kapama Private Game Reserve in Kruger National Park, where you’ll enjoy six game drives to see the remarkable number of species, including 42 mammal species and 350 bird species. You’ll have a great chance to see the “Big 5”—lion, leopard, elephant, rhino, and Cape buffalo. Have your camera ready because you may also see impala, giraffe, hippo, spotted hyena, cheetah, wildebeest, and more.

Another highlight is Victoria Falls, bordering Zambia and Zimbabwe. Roughly twice the height of Niagara Falls, stand in awe as you hear the roar of the falls. Witness the beautiful rainbows left behind by the impressive amount of spray shooting into the sky. In fact, the sprays shoot so high they can be seen miles away!

Glorious scenery and majestic wildlife are not the only things you’ll experience on this tour. You’ll also travel to Johannesburg and Cape Town, where you will visit a local home for a Malay cooking class before enjoying a traditional Malay meal. Also, take a cable car ride to the top of Table Mountain (weather permitting) for spectacular views of the city.

 

If you’re looking to travel to captivating, new places, this is the tour for you. You’ll return home from this vacation with plenty of stories and photos to share with your friends and family.

 

Itinerary

 

Day 1Arrive in Cape Town, South AfricaWelcome to South Africa! Arrive late this evening, check in to your hotel, and rest as you prepare for a great adventure.
Day 2Cape Town. Cape Peninsula ExcursionToday, enjoy a full day of sightseeing, starting with an orientation tour of Cape Town. Then, take a scenic drive south through the fishing village of Hout Bay before ascending Chapman’s Peak Drive, one of the most spectacular drives in the world and which skirts the rocky coastline. Continue on to CAPE POINT NATURE RESERVE. Stop at the Cape of Good Hope and Cape Point, the southwesternmost point of the African continent, for incredible panoramic views. Continue on to Simon’s Town and Boulders Beach, where you will visit a COLONY OF ENDANGERED AFRICAN PENGUINS, known for the unique sound they make. Return to Cape Town and enjoy the evening at your leisure. This evening, join your traveling companions for a welcome dinner at a local restaurant. (B,L,D)
Day 3Cape TownThis morning, visit the BO-KAAP MUSEUM, followed by a fascinating [LF] WALKING TOUR through Bo-Kaap, also known as the Malay Quarter. Founded by former slaves in the 1750s, this lively area is a true melting pot of cultures. The historic and colorful houses, ranging from lime-green and pink to orange, reflect Dutch and British architecture, and the area has been declared a national monument. Afterward, visit the home of a local family for a [LF] MALAY COOKING CLASS. Learn how to mix masala, fold samoosas, and about the delicate flavors of Cape Malay curry before sitting down for a traditional Malay meal. Then, visit Table Mountain and take a CABLE-CAR RIDE to the top (weather permitting) for stunning views of the city and surrounding area. The remainder of the day is at your leisure. (B,L)
Day 4Cape TownEnjoy a full day at leisure for your own discoveries. Perhaps simply explore the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, take an excursion to the stunning Cape winelands for wine tasting, or cruise to infamous Robben Island, where Nelson Madela spent 18 of his 27 years in prison, for a guided tour. Your Tour Director will have suggestions to help you make the most of this beautiful city. (B)
Day 5Cape Town-Kapama Private Game Reserve, Greater Kruger National ParkToday, leave beautiful Cape Town behind and fly to KAPAMA PRIVATE GAME RESERVE, part of Greater Kruger National Park, to begin your safari adventure! The Kruger area is famous for its abundance of wildlife and you will have a great chance of seeing the “Big 5”—lion, leopard, elephant, rhino, and buffalo. Enjoy your first GAME DRIVE this afternoon. Your skilled tracker and professional ranger work together as a team so you can learn more about the ecosystem as you view wildlife up close. Return to your lodge for dinner. (B,D)
Day 6Kapama Private Game ReserveRise between 5 am and 5:30 am for coffee and tea before your EARLY MORNING GAME DRIVE. If the timing is right, you might spot some of the big cats after a night of hunting. Other animals you may see include kudu, impala, giraffe, hippo, cheetah, spotted hyena, wildebeest, and more. Great bird watching is also possible—some 350 species having been recorded in the area. Return for breakfast mid-morning, followed by time to relax and enjoy the lodge and its surroundings. Perhaps take a swim in the pool, visit the wellness center for one of the many spa treatments on offer, or simply sit back and watch the animals pass by. You may even choose to join your ranger for a BUSH WALK to learn more about the native flora and how to identify animals by their footprints, while observing them from a safe distance. Optional excursions include the nearby Hoedspruit Center for Endangered Species, where you can see a number of rehabilitated animals or get up close to a herd of elephants so you can touch and feed them. On one of the days you may even choose to skip a game drive for a memorable hour-long elephant-back safari through the bush! In the mid-afternoon, tea will be served prior to your AFTERNOON GAME DRIVE. Step out of your safari vehicle to stretch your legs and watch as the sun sets over the Drakensberg Mountains. As darkness descends, your tracker will bring out a spotlight to help you spot nocturnal animals—if you are lucky, maybe even a leopard! Return to your lodge in time to freshen up before dinner. (B,L,D daily)
Day 7Kapama Private Game ReserveRise between 5 am and 5:30 am for coffee and tea before your EARLY MORNING GAME DRIVE. If the timing is right, you might spot some of the big cats after a night of hunting. Other animals you may see include kudu, impala, giraffe, hippo, cheetah, spotted hyena, wildebeest, and more. Great bird watching is also possible—some 350 species having been recorded in the area. Return for breakfast mid-morning, followed by time to relax and enjoy the lodge and its surroundings. Perhaps take a swim in the pool, visit the wellness center for one of the many spa treatments on offer, or simply sit back and watch the animals pass by. You may even choose to join your ranger for a BUSH WALK to learn more about the native flora and how to identify animals by their footprints, while observing them from a safe distance. Optional excursions include the nearby Hoedspruit Center for Endangered Species, where you can see a number of rehabilitated animals or get up close to a herd of elephants so you can touch and feed them. On one of the days you may even choose to skip a game drive for a memorable hour-long elephant-back safari through the bush! In the mid-afternoon, tea will be served prior to your AFTERNOON GAME DRIVE. Step out of your safari vehicle to stretch your legs and watch as the sun sets over the Drakensberg Mountains. As darkness descends, your tracker will bring out a spotlight to help you spot nocturnal animals—if you are lucky, maybe even a leopard! Return to your lodge in time to freshen up before dinner. (B,L,D daily)
Day 8Kapama Private Game Reserve-JohannesburgEnjoy one last GAME DRIVE this morning before transferring to the airport for your flight to Johannesburg. The remainder of the day is at your leisure. (B)
Day 9JohannesburgToday’s sightseeing starts with an enriching visit to [LF] SOWETO (South Western Township), the largest township in the country. Soweto is a part of South Africa’s turbulent past, but this multicultural area is also a reflection of today and hope for tomorrow. Along the way, see the homes of two Nobel Peace Prize winners: Nelson Mandela and Archbishop Desmond Tutu. You will also see the Hector Pieterson Memorial, dedicated to the 12-year-old boy killed by police during a demonstration in 1976. This led to the Soweto Uprising, an important event in the long struggle to end apartheid some 14 years later. Next, visit the unforgettable APARTHEID MUSEUM. Here you will learn about the founding of South Africa before delving into the apartheid era. Using photos, video, and print, the museum takes you on an extraordinary journey through the apartheid years to the 1994 democratic elections that named Nelson Mandela president. (B,L)
Day 10Johannesburg-Victoria Falls, ZimbabweToday, leave South Africa and fly north to Zimbabwe. This evening, enjoy a CRUISE on the Zambezi River, which affords you a great opportunity to photograph wildlife and a spectacular African sunset. (B,D)
Day 11Victoria FallsToday, visit mighty VICTORIA FALLS for an awe-inspiring experience. Enjoy a GUIDED WALK, where you will learn the history of the falls and hear fascinating details about the surrounding flora and fauna. This evening, your Tour Director hosts a special farewell dinner. (B,D)NOTE: 
During the dry season (September-December) and during particularly dry years, water flow to Victoria Falls may be low.
Day 12Victoria Falls-Johannesburg-Homebound FlightYour tour ends with a flight back to Johannesburg to connect with your homebound flight. Book homebound flights after 5:30 pm. (B)

 

Vacation Highlights

CAPE TOWN
Guided sightseeing, visit Cape Point Nature Reserve and a colony of African penguins and the Bo-Kaap Museum; [LF] walking tour of Bo-Kaap area; [LF] Cape Malay cooking class; cable-car ride up Table Mountain

KAPAMA PRIVATE GAME RESERVE
Six game drives in an open-air 4-wheel-drive Land Rover; optional bush walk

JOHANNESBURG
Visit [LF] Soweto and the Apartheid Museum

VICTORIA FALLS
Cruise on Zambezi River; guided walk of the falls

NOTES:

  • Open-air 4-wheel-drive safari vehicles carry a maximum of nine passengers.
  • Check with your travel agent or physician regarding the latest health requirements for travel to South Africa and Zimbabwe. This may require inoculations prior to travel and/or taking anti-malaria pills.
  • All game viewing is done at your own risk. We will require a signed liability waiver prior to travel.
  • We do not recommend this vacation to people with serious back problems, as it can be quite rough while driving on/off game park trails.
  • Small-Group Discovery – We never allow more than 20 travelers on our Small-Group Discovery vacations, allowing you to truly immerse yourself in the destination and local culture.

 

Meals

American breakfast daily, 5 lunches, 6 dinners including a welcome dinner in Cape Town and a farewell dinner in Victoria Falls

 

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