A whirlwind of sheer opulence, unforgettable wild encounters and cosmopolitan city resplendence.
Guests will be met and welcomed on arrival at O R Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg where they are assisted in transferring to a flight bound for the Sabi Sand - the first destination of the 18 Day Three Countries and Cape Town Safari. Guests will then be met on arrival in the Sabi Sand and transferred to the lodge.
Two major rivers, the Sabie and the Sand, flow through this wilderness area, which is renowned as the finest wildlife viewing area in South Africa. An open 4x4 safari is conducted during the late afternoon by a local ranger, who harbors intimate knowledge of the area and the wildlife which call it home.
A morning safari is enjoyed shortly after sunrise. This time of the day often yields incredible sightings, as many animals are more active before the heat of midday settles over the savanna. The game drive returns to camp for a late breakfast, after which guests have the opportunity to explore this region of the Sabi Sand on foot before returning to camp for some relaxation. During the late afternoon, an open 4x4 safari extending into the early evening is conducted. This offers guests an excellent opportunity to observe the nocturnal creatures of Africa as they embark on their nightly activities. Most notable of these are the leopard and lion.
The day is once again devoted to two open 4x4 safaris in this area, where the opportunity to sight the Big Five is extremely high. Sightings of these animals generally occur on eight out of ten days. The opportunity to encounter the Big Five - lion, leopard, elephant, rhino and buffalo - is the experience of a lifetime and will prove the highlight of your African safari.
Following a final game drive in the wilderness of the Sabi Sand, your safari traces the scenic spoils of Mpumalanga’s Panorama Route. Highlights include the awe-inspiring expanse of the Blyde River Gorge and God’s Window with its supreme views across the Lowveld. Pilgrim’s Rest, a historic hamlet famous for its role in the gold rush of the 1880’s, may also be visited. The overnight destination is an idyllic country estate just outside the town of Dullstroom. Fine dining in a truly sublime setting is on the menu for the evening.
Breakfast is followed by a transfer to O R Tambo International in Johannesburg, from where guests fly to Livingstone in Zambia. Guests will be met on arrival at Livingstone Airport and then transferred to their hotel located on the banks of the mighty Zambezi River. The hotel is bordered by the Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park. The Victoria Falls are found on the Zambezi River, just four kilometers downstream from the lodge. At approximately 1.7 km wide, the falls plummet 108m over a sheer drop and into a churning chasm below. The late afternoon is spent at leisure.
The morning is devoted to visiting the falls section of the Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park. The local name translates to ‘the smoke that thunders’ and has been commonly used in the area for many hundreds of years. The sanctuary affords incredible views in all directions. A walk across the knife-edge bridge with the falls thundering into the chasm below is sure to be an exciting prospect. During peak flow, the mist rising above the falls can be seen from as far as sixty kilometers away. At the falls' entrance there is also an extensive African curio market and guests may take some time to view the different arts and crafts on display before returning to the hotel around midday.
In the late afternoon, a sunset cruise is enjoyed on the mighty Zambezi River. Traditional cocktails and snacks are served aboard the river boat, with the sight of the sun setting over one of Africa's most impressive sights sure to be remembered for a lifetime.
The morning is devoted to an elephant-back safari in a wilderness area not far from Livingstone. On arrival at the venue, guests will enjoy a short presentation about the project as well as a short lesson on how to interact with the elephants, after which the safari begins. An experienced elephant minder accompanies each elephant and visitor. The route follows a trail through the surrounding woodland and may include a stop along the banks of the Zambezi River. Riding silently atop a gigantic pachyderm is certainly an unforgettable experience. A full English breakfast is then enjoyed after which guests are transferred back to their hotel where the remainder of the day is spent at leisure.
Breakfast is followed by a drive of about an hour to Kazungula, the border post where the countries of Zambia, Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe meet. After crossing the Zambezi into Botswana, a short drive leads us to the village of Kasane, situated on the edge of the Chobe National Park.
Chobe National Park is the second largest national park in Botswana and covers an area of 10 566 square kilometers. It boasts one of the greatest concentrations of game found on the African continent. After checking-in at the lodge, some time is allotted to relaxation before enjoying a first afternoon game drive conducted by your experienced ranger and tracker.
A morning safari in open 4x4 vehicles will bring guests into contact with the largest concentration of elephants on the African continent, as well as hippo, buffalo, puku, various antelope species, lions and other mammals that gather along the banks of the Chobe River.
A sundown game viewing cruise is conducted on the Chobe River during the late afternoon. This safari activity offers one a unique vantage point from which to enjoy the wildlife coming to the water's edge. Elephant will often be seen cooling down along the river bank and, on occasion, they will swim across the river to gain access to desired vegetation on the many islands in this river system.
A morning game drive in Chobe is followed by a transfer to Kasane and a light charter flight to the Okavango Delta, where an afternoon safari is conducted in an open 4x4 vehicle by a local ranger and tracker. The area was once part of the ancient Lake Makgadikgadi, which dried up some 10 000 years ago. The Okavango River has no outlet to the sea. Instead, it empties into the sands of the Kalahari Desert, thereby irrigating some 15 000km² of otherwise arid landscape. The Okavango Delta is subject to seasonal flooding, which begins around mid-summer in the north and about six months later in the south.
Two game activities in one of Africa's most unspoiled wilderness areas are the focus of the day. The game activities include open 4x4 safaris, as well as mokoro (a traditional wooden canoe) rides along the reed-lined channels of the delta. The delta environment has large numbers of exciting animal species, such as crocodile, red lechwe, sitatunga, elephant, wild dog, buffalo, wattled crane and many more common mammals and amazing bird life. The best time for game viewing in the delta is during the May - October period, as animal life is concentrated in these flooded areas when the remainder of the bush is very dry and harsh.
The 6 000-square-mile maze of lagoons, channels, and islands gives the Okavango the description ‘the river that never finds the sea’ and provides the backdrop to another day of game activities conducted by knowledgeable rangers. Their insight both into the behavior of the different species and their understanding of the ecology of the region are sure to enhance your safari.
A last morning game drive in the Okavango is followed by a late breakfast. Guests then fly to Maun on a light charter, from where a connection is made to Johannesburg. Guests will be met at O R Tambo International and assisted in transferring to a flight bound for Cape Town. Guests will be met on arrival at Cape Town and transferred to their hotel at the V&A Waterfront. The late afternoon is spent at leisure enjoying breathtaking views of the Atlantic and the rugged Cape mountains.
Today guests will enjoy a trip to the top of South Africa’s most iconic natural landmark; Table Mountain. Relish spectacular 360-degree views from the modern rotating cable cars before reaching the summit. A network of trails leads visitors to various vantage points, and you may even encounter a dassie (rock hyrax)) or two while exploring.
The tour then makes its way to Kirstenbosch. The gardens offer a green paradise with hundreds of indigenous plant species. From fynbos to ferns, proteas to pines, this colorful Eden is ideal for hiking and picnicking. Every season teases new hues from the palette, ensuring that the gardens are a year-round destination. After the visit, we return to the overnight destination at the waterfront.
A stop is made in Hout Bay where we enjoy a short boat ride to Seal Island before crossing over the imposing Chapman's Peak en route to the Cape Peninsula. In 1488, Bartholomew Diaz named the peninsula 'Cabo Tormentoso' or the 'Cape of Storms'. Portugal's King John II later gave it the name 'Cabo da Boa Esperanca' - the Cape of Good Hope. In 1580, Sir Frances Drake described it as ‘the stateliest thing and the fairest Cape we saw in the whole circumference of the earth.’Cape Point forms part of the Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve. It is the most southwestern tip of Africa, a dramatic location rich with views, wild beaches and scenic walking routes. Animals such as baboon, ostrich, blesbok and red hartebeest frequent the reserve. En route back to Cape Town, the tour makes a stop at Boulders Beach, a sheltered cove in False Bay that serves as a conservation site for a colony of African penguins. Strewn with ancient granite boulders and fine white sands, the beach is the perfect setting to observe these remarkable flightless seabirds.
Today the tour makes it way to Stellenbosch. Established by Dutch Cape Colony Governor Simon van der Stel in 1697, Stellenbosch is South Africa’s second oldest town. Home to one of the country’s top universities and bordered by award-winning wine farms on all sides, the enchanting City of Oaks offers rich history, handsome architecture and a fortune of flavors to delight every palate. Some of the finest vineyards in the area are explored before traveling on to the town of Somerset West, where a visit is made to Vergelegen.
Throughout its history, internationally renowned celebrities have frequently visited Vergelegen, one of the most remarkable places in the Western Cape. Over the last decade Vergelegen has been honored by visits from the executive committee of the ANC, Queen Elizabeth II, the Duke of Edinburgh, and in March 1998 by Nelson Mandela, Bill Clinton and their First Ladies. On completion of the visit to Vergelegen, your safari makes its way to the overnight destination.
The morning is devoted to visiting two of the finest wineries in the Franschhoek Valley, where a range of different cultivars are produced. The Cape winelands town of Franschhoek is characterized by its inherently French flavor, a vestige of the French Huguenot refugees that established this epicurean corner of South Africa. With its exquisite selection of award-winning restaurants, historic wine farms and the spectacular natural beauty of the area, Franschhoek is a prime South African travel destination. The Franschhoek Pass is then crossed with some of the most majestic mountain scenery in the Western Cape on display, as the tour makes its way to Grabouw. Grabouw and Elgin form the heart of the apple-producing region. Here a stop is made at a working apple farm. A tour of the farm is included and explains the full process of apple farming.
After breakfast, guests are transferred to Cape Town International Airport, where their a memorable 18 Day Three Countries and Cape Town Safari ends.
Travel to South Africa for a wide range of stunning safari areas to choose from.
Botswana's safari areas are remarkably pristine and flush with wildlife.
Travel to Namibia for a unique desert-oriented safari adventure.
Zambia's national parks are wildly remote and barely touched by civilization.
Zimbabwe is home to the awe-inspiring Victoria Falls and wildernesses like Mana Pools.
Mozambique is replete with stunning beaches and pristine coral reefs.