Gather a group of friends and escape to South Africa on our 15-day South Africa Womens Safari where you will tour along a stretch of the south coast, including the famous Garden Route. You will stay in seven luxury guest houses and hotels in the Eastern and Western Capes, as well as Cape Town, being transported by private vehicle much of the time. The itinerary includes game viewing activities, visiting nature and wildlife reserves, as well as plenty of time for culture, shopping and wine drinking in quaint South African villages. You can largely build a bespoke itinerary based on the massive range of activities available at and between each destination.
On arrival at Port Elizabeth, you will be met and privately transferred to Kariega Game Reserve in the Eastern Cape. The transfer takes approximately 1 hour and 20 minutes.
Spend three nights at the stunning Kariega Settlers Drift in a tented suite.
We will be going for daily game viewing activities in Kariega Game Reserve using open 4×4 safari vehicles. Also on offer are daily river cruises on the Kariega River.
The Eastern Cape is the second largest of South Africa’s nine provinces, and incorporates five ecological zones – ranging from lush evergreen forest to rugged mountain and dry savannah.
Kariega Game Reserve is situated in Frontier Country, the historical heartland of the Eastern Cape. This inland area embodies the spirit of many cultures which currently form part of South Africa’s Rainbow Nation, including the 1820 Settlers, the Khoi, the Xhosa and the Boers. The Eastern Cape Province is also the birth place of many prominent South Africans including Nelson Mandela and Thabo Mbeki.
Choose two activities per day whilst staying at Kariega Settlers Drift – options are two game viewing excursions, two river cruises, or one of each.
Kariega Game Reserve is home to lion, elephant, buffalo, leopard and rhino. Close-up viewing of these and other wildlife is common. Other species abound such as hippo, hyena, giraffe, zebra, wildebeest, eland, kudu, waterbuck and a variety of other antelope, as well as a myriad of bird species including the nesting crowned eagle, martial and fish eagles.
In the evening, sit back and relax in luxury alongside your friends after a few days of safari activity and enjoy the gentle sound of Bushman’s River flowing past the camp.
Following breakfast at Kariega Settlers Drift we will collect you for your private transfer to Port Elizabeth Airport. Here you will be met by your driver/guide for your private travel and touring along the Garden Route for the next five nights.
We depart Port Elizabeth for Harkerville and your next lodge with sightseeing en route at the Tsitsikamma National Coastal Park, Storms River Village and a Canopy Tour, time permitting.
Arrive at Tsala Treetop Lodge and sink into a sumptuous Treetop Suite with your friends. Ideally situated between the coastal towns of Knysna and Plettenberg Bay in the Western Cape, Tsala is a wonderful location from which to explore the beauty the celebrated Garden Route or just to spend time relaxing at the peaceful lodge.
Spend two nights at Tsala Treetop Lodge in a Treetop Suite.
This day will include sightseeing at Monkeyland Primate Sanctuary, Birds of Eden sanctuary, Tenikwa Wildlife Awareness and Rehabilitation Centre. There is also the option to go on a sunset cheetah walk.
We continue our touring inland to Oudtshoorn. En route, we can visit the Knsyna Elephant Park and art galleries. On arrival in Oudtshoorn, we will spend the latter half of the day visiting the fantastic Cango Caves.
Make the most of the one night staying at Rosenhof Country House by abandoning yourselves to the jacuzzi and sauna after the day of activity.
After breakfast and a morning visit to the Ostrich Farm in Oudtshoorn we will continue along the Robinson Pass to Mossel Bay. Before arriving at Schoone Oordt Country House late afternoon we will visit the Diaz Museum in Mossel Bay.
You will spend one night at Schoone Oordt Country House in a luxury room. The country house is set in amazing grounds which are well worth exploring in the afternoon, or you are free to wander into Swellendam, a town rich in history.
On day 8 we will leave Swellendam and travel to Hermanus, via either Cape Agulhas or Stanford if you would like to include a wine-tasting. We arrive in Hermanus in the late afternoon and it is here that you will say goodbye to your guide of the last five days.
For the next two nights you will explore Hermanus and all that this quaint village has to offer. This includes land or boat based whale watching (in season, May – November). These tours are optional and details are provided separately.
Day 9 is open to a full day of sightseeing in and around Hermanus. With pristine beaches, charming village shops, a variety of restaurants, cliff paths and the Harold Porter National Botanical Garden, all nestled between an incandescent mountain range and the spectacular Atlantic Ocean, this is a great place to make yourselves at home and enjoy a slower pace.
Alternatively, a host of experiences await the more adventurous among you, from sea kayaking and paragliding to great white shark diving.
You can spend the evening at leisure watching for whales from your luxury suite.
We will collect you for your private transfer to Franschhoek with sightseeing en route. There are a number of optional touring possibilities on the way including a visit to Theewaters Nature Reserve and a stop off at Villiersdorp in the centre of a flourishing apple-growing region. Theewaterskloof Dam also offers some exciting water sport options.
We will arrive at Mont Rochelle hotel in the late afternoon and spend two nights here.
Day 11 is free to explore Franschhoek at your leisure. You can enjoy a picnic on the vast estate at Mont Rochelle and in the evening, have a wine tasting session with Mont Rochelle’s expert or have a pampering session at the spa for an extra cost. A private full day cycling tour through the local vineyards is also an enticing option.
This part of the tour can be much slower paced and gives you space to relax and unwind with the ladies after your time exploring the Garden Route and the Kariega Game Reserve.
We will collect you for your transfer to Cape Town with sightseeing and touring en route. We arrive at the final accommodation, the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront in the late afternoon. Take in the cultural delights and entertainment of the piazza outside and step into the colonial world of the Victoria and Alfred Hotel. You spend three nights in a mountain facing room.
Enjoy the last few days of your holiday by taking optional private tours with your friends today and tomorrow. Today, choose between a City, Table Mountain and Robben Island Tour or a Cape Peninsula Tour.
Depart on a comprehensive city orientation tour starting with a trip up Table Mountain by cable car with your guide. Continue on a city tour which includes a visit to two or three of the city’s famous museums, the Castle of Good Hope and the Malay / Muslim quarters. Drive through the city centre and pass the houses of parliament. You will have an opportunity to visit the Company Gardens.
Make your way to the Clock Tower (Nelson Mandela Gateway) to board a ferry to Robben Island. The ferry operates on a scheduled basis and will be shared with other guests. Your guide will accompany you to the island. On arrival, he will introduce you to your private Robben Island guide.
Journey along the Atlantic Seaboard and drive through the coastal suburbs of Sea Point, Bantry Bay and Clifton. Travel on past Bakoven and Llandudno, which are marked by shipwrecks which fell foul to the infamous Cape winter storms and then on to the scenic fishing village of Hout Bay. Head over the 600m heights of Chapmans Peak Drive.
Explore the rocky coastline and Cape Fynbos vegetation which is home to unique birdlife such as African Black Oystercatchers and Cape Sugarbirds amongst others. The opportunity is also there to view animals such as the Cape Mountain Zebra, Bontebok, Ostrich and Baboon as we enter the Cape of Good Hope National Park. Climb to the famous Cape Point Lighthouse to capture the magical vistas of False Bay and stop at the south western most point of Africa.
Visit Boulders Beach for an exciting close up encounter with African Penguins. Drive through the historical naval village of Simons town and over another spectacular mountain pass; Boyes Drive, where you will take in views of the quaint fishing harbour at Kalk Bay as well as the seaside villages of St James and Muizenberg.
Visit Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, with time to browse these magnificent gardens set on the slopes of Table Mountain before returning to the city.
Today you and your friends can go on a Cape Peninsula Art Experience or Cook in the Cape, amongst other options. (Other optional private activities and tours are available including Digital Photography and a Pelagic Birding Cruise – please enquire for more details.)
The day starts with a visit to Imiso Ceramics at the Old Biscuit Mill. Run by four talented individuals, Imiso now exports to Europe and America. We move further down the Peninsula to Kalk Bay to browse some of the many art and antique shops and galleries in this picturesque area. After lunch we stroll down to Red Rock Tribal Art and visit Juliette and Steve de Combes’ home to view their private collection of tribal art which they have been researching and collecting for 15 years.
Experience gourmet foods and participate in the preparation and enjoyment of a delectable meal typical of the Cape. Spend the morning in the company of a highly-acclaimed South African chef, observing their methods and partaking in the preparation of a mouth-watering feast. Learn the intricacies of their culinary techniques whilst savouring some of the Cape’s finest wines. Immerse yourself in the exotic aromas and unique flavours of South African cuisine before settling down to enjoy the epicurean delight you have assisted in creating.
After a long relaxing lunch, weave your way through the forests of Newlands towards the world-famous botanical gardens of Kirstenbosch. End the day with a leisurely stroll through the kaleidoscopic flaura that is the Cape Floral Kingdom. Alternatively, ascend Chapman’s Peak Drive, one of the most beautiful passes in the world, stopping at various look-out points to admire the breath-taking scenery below.
After what will prove to be the women’s holiday of a lifetime we will transfer you by private vehicle to Cape Town International Airport for you to meet your flight connections and continue with your onward travel arrangements.
Situated on South Africa’s famous Garden Route from Cape Town to the Sunshine Coast, Settlers Drift is a mere 10 minute drive to the sunny coastal village of Kenton-on-Sea.
Located in a remote and untouched part of the Kariega wilderness, Settlers Drift offers a unique tented safari combined with 5-star luxury. Guests can gaze down onto Bushman’s River from secluded viewing decks outside the suite. Inside the suites features include spacious bedrooms, a wood burning stove and en suite bathroom complete with a contemporary free standing bath.
Activities from Settlers Drift include early morning and late afternoon game drives, watching the abundant bird and animal life from river cruises, guided safari walks, leisurely canoeing on the Kariega and Bushman Rivers and fishing on the Kariega River. Golf enthusiasts can enjoy two different courses within 25 and 40 minutes away for an extra fee. Golden beaches, historic sightseeing and a cultural visit to Port Elizabeth are also on offer.
Set in indigenous forest only 10km from the coastal town of Plettenburg Bay, Tsala Treetop Lodge is an elevated hideaway at the heart of the Garden Route.
This 5-star lodge provides everything you could wish for in such a haven – fine international dining, plush villas and suites, a wine cellar containing some of South Africa’s best vintage, and private infinity pools. Take welcome drinks on the dining deck suspended above sweeping views of the forest floor below. Suites are set snuggly into the tree canopies and feature sitting rooms surrounding cosy fireplaces, and bathrooms with indoor and outdoor showers.
This is a wonderful base from which to explore the celebrated Garden Route. Sightseeing activities available include visiting the Tenikwa Wildlife Awareness Centre, the Birds of Eden sanctuary and Monkeyland Primate Sanctuary. For an extra cost you can choose to snorkel with African fur seals, meet African elephants, go high speed boating, surf, bungee jump, horse ride, sky dive and more.
A carefully renovated South African homestead, the classic Rosenhof Country House dates back to 1852.
Decadence awaits you at Rosenhof. Executive suites have their own swimming pool, living area and patio, as well as tranquil vistas of the Swartberg Mountains. Standard rooms are equally stylish and those staying here can take advantage of the main swimming pool in the grounds. Antique furnishings emit an air of authenticity and the ornate dining room is sure to impress. Be seduced by picturesque gardens surrounding the main house. Rosenhof has a cosy pub and several luxury lounges with fireplaces where guests can relax and admire works from well-known South African artists.
While based at Rosenhof it is possible to visit Ostrich Show Farms, the Cango Caves, the Cango Wildlife Ranch and, if you rise early enough, accompany the expert guide on a sunrise meerkat tour. Other opportunities include a hot air balloon ride, a trip to the Cultural Museum of Oudtshoorn and adventure activities in the Swartberg Mountains.
The Wellness Centre at Rosenhof offers a fully equipped gym, jacuzzi, sauna and a beauty clinic.
Schoone Oordt Country House stands amidst a fragrant rose garden, peaceful fountains and landscaped shrubbery in the small town of Swellendam.
Owned by Richard and Alison Walker since 2003, this delightful manor house has been lovingly renovated to combine historical charm with luxurious modernities. Handmade linen, goose-down duvets, pure wool carpets, open hearths and under-floor heating complete the stylish aesthetics. The house and annexes comprise stunning standard, luxury, family and honeymoon rooms.
Swellendam is a small town with a rich history. Take a walk down the ‘golden mile’, enjoy the unique, specialist shops and work spaces, including a honey shop, pottery studio as well as quaint cafes. Drostdy Museum is a must if you are interested in the cultural history of the area, and if you would like to learn more about Swellendam, historical tours of the town are available with Adriaan, a local expert.
The Ocean Eleven Luxury Guest House is situated on the Cape South Coast of South Africa, in the quaint coastal town of Hermanus.
Standing on the famous cliffs of Hermanus, the colonial Ocean Eleven presents guests with what can only be described as breathtaking vistas of Walker Bay and the surrounding mountains. This guest house was recently voted in the London Times as having one of the top 20 views in the world with a room.
The main house of Ocean Eleven was built with the high ceilings, tall windows and teak floors that made colonial architecture so utterly elegant. It also offers beautifully classic suites with all the luxuries you would expect.
Having been a popular coastal holiday destination for over a hundred years, there are a myriad of things to see and do. Not only does Hermanus offer the best land-based whale viewing in the world, with guests of Ocean Eleven being able to watch these creatures from the comfort of their suite, but in addition a host of adventures are available, from sea kayaking and paragliding to great white shark diving. Quaint village shops, coastal walks and a nature reserve await you.
Owned by entrepreneur Richard Branson since 2014, Mont Rochelle is part of the exclusive Virgin Limited Edition collection of hotels.
Boasting a beautiful rural setting incorporating 360 degree views of Franschhoek Valley, Mont Rochelle is an elegant manor house hotel where life is lived at a leisurely pace. The hotel is complete with its very own 37 hectare vineyard, allowing you to indulge in the finest South African wines at your leisure. Plush rooms provide the perfect setting to gaze out on the courtyard and valley views.
A favourite activity for many guests is picnicking on the estate – the kitchen can arrange a well-stocked picnic basket with a chilled bottle of wine (or two!). Wine tasting sessions can be arranged anywhere in the hotel. Pampering at Mont Rochelle’s spa, a visit to the gym and relaxing in the heated pool are also at your fingertips.
If you want to get out and about, the most popular activities are hiking, biking and a spot of retail therapy in the village.
Set at the heart of the V&A Waterfront, the Victoria and Alfred Hotel elegantly occupies a converted warehouse.
With 94 spacious en-suite rooms, the Victoria and Alfred Hotel offers views of table mountain, the Alfred Basin and the bustling waterfront square. You can feel the ambience of colonial Cape Town as you step into the foyer, sense the past of shipwrecks and storms that colour every corner, then relax in the elegant contemporary bedrooms and savour the atmosphere of the world’s most famous working harbour.
This is a great base from which to explore the delights of Cape Town, including the Cape Peninsula, Table Mountain and the historically significant Robben Island. For an extra cost you can take a helicopter flight over the Cape, or for the more adventurous, go on a shark cage diving trip. Watching the sunset over Table Mountain is an experience not to be missed.