This exciting accommodated overland tour will take you from Joburg to Cape Town via Kruger, Matobo, Chobe and Etosha National Parks, to see fantastic African wildlife. Trek the biggest dunes in the world's oldest desert, feel the spray of the Victoria Falls and travel the waterways of the Okavango Delta. Explore the magic of Southern Africa, leaving you with new friends, and unforgettable memories of this overland experience.
This tour runs in reverse starting in Cape Town
Day 1. Johannesburg to Kruger National Park Highlights. Shangaan tribal dancing . Accommodation. Hotel Numbi.From Johannesburg, South Africa’s commercial capital, we travel via the scenic panoramic region of Mpumalanga to Hazyview, bordering South Africa’s famed national park – Kruger. At 24000 sq km, wildlife is free to roam and it has become incredibly diverse in both fauna and flora. From the famed ‘Big Five’, to almost every major African mammal is present.
Day 2. Kruger National Park Highlights. Kruger National Park, South Africa. Accommodation. Hotel Numbi.Waking early, we board our open 4x4 safari vehicles and drive to the park gates. Kruger is home to over 505 species of birds, 148 species of mammals and many reptiles which we enthusiastically search for with binoculars and camera at hand during the morning and afternoon.
Day 3. Hazyview to Tshipise Highlights. Tshipise, South Africa. Accommodation. Forever Resorts, Tshipise.We leave Hazyview and the Greater Kruger area and travel north through South Africa’s lush and unique countryside to Tshipise, a town situated in the northern Limpopo province. Our accommodation is located at Forever Resorts. This resort is situated at the foot of one of Limpopo’s rolling koppies adjacent to the Honnet Nature Reserve and offers hot springs for swimming. 3 images Tshipise, South Africa 4 images Forever Resorts, Tshipise
Day 4. Tshipise to Bulawayo, Zimbabwe Accommodation. Burkes Paradise.Leaving South Africa, we make our way across the border to Zimbabwe and on to Bulawayo, Zimbabwe's second-largest city. Located in the South-west of the country, it is home to more than a million people. Our accommodation is located on the outskirts of the town of Bulawayo in lovely landscaped gardens with fish ponds and shady trees. 2 images Burkes Paradise
Day 5. Matobo National Park Highlights. Matobo National Park, Zimbabwe. Accommodation. Burkes Paradise.After a refreshing night’s sleep, we meet our local guides and board open safari vehicles for our adventure into Matobo National Park. The reserve has the largest concentration of Black and White Rhino in Africa and, provided conditions are right, our guides will lead us on foot to some of the more concealed places in search of these magnificent animals. The park also has the densest population of leopard and black eagle in the world and one of the most impressive amounts of rock art in Southern Africa dating back at least 13,000 years. Leaving the park, we make our way back to Bulawayo and our accommodation for the night.
Day 6. Bulawayo to Livingstone, Zambia Highlights. Victoria Falls - Mosi oa Tunya National Park, Zambia. Accommodation. The Zambezi Waterfront, Livingstone.Our journey continues north through the town of Victoria Falls across the border into neighbouring Zambia and the town of Livingstone. Our accommodation, The Victoria Falls Waterfront is situated on the banks of the Zambezi River and offers a restaurant and small deck/terrace overlooking the river and the booking point for the numerous optional activities available in the area. Staff will give a full briefing on what can be booked - whitewater rafting, canoeing, bungey jumping, abseiling, gorge swinging, horse riding, scenic flights and river cruises, just to name a few. Choose your activity at leisure, if time allows or else simply relax and enjoy the picturesque surroundings.
Day 7. Livingstone Highlights. Livingstone Activities, Zambia. Accommodation. The Zambezi Waterfront, Livingstone.We have a free day in Livingstone today to explore the optional activities, town and markets or simply relax by the poolside at the Waterfront. The perfect time to catch up on your social media and share your experiences. 5 images Livingstone Activities, Zambia 5 images The Zambezi Waterfront, Livingstone
Day 8. Livingstone to Kasane, Botswana Highlights. Chobe Fish Eagle Cruise, Botswana. Accommodation. Thebe River Lodge.This morning we leave Livingstone and travel the short distance to the Botswana border and onto the town of Kasane. This quaint town is the gateway to Chobe National Park. By size, Chobe is the third largest park in the country and is the most diverse - home to elephant, lion, leopard, buffalo, hippo and prolific birdlife. In the afternoon we join a cruise on the Chobe River to view the abundance of wildlife coming into drink at the water's edge. 7 images Chobe Fish Eagle Cruise, Botswana 7 images Thebe River Lodge
Day 9. Chobe National Park to Elephant Sands Highlights. Chobe National Park Game Drive, Botswana. Elephant Sands, Nata, Botswana. Accommodation. Elephant Sands, Nata.This morning we board an open game drive vehicle and head out to explore the Chobe National Park where we may have the opportunity to spot not only elephant that are so prolific in the park, but any other animals and bird species we may have missed the evening before. Moving on from Chobe we continue south to our accommodation at Elephant Sands. There are no fences surrounding the area so wildlife roams freely. Many groups report seeing elephant and antelope at close proximity from the accommodation - a wildlife treat like no other! 5 images Chobe National Park Game Drive, Botswana 1 images Elephant Sands, Nata, Botswana 4 images Elephant Sands, Nata
Day 10. Nata to Maun Highlights. Maun, Botswana. Accommodation. Sitatunga Camp, Maun.We leave Elephant Sands and make our way to Maun, the gateway to the Okavango Delta. Although officially still a village, Maun has developed rapidly from a rural frontier town to a community and thriving tourist town that has spread along the wide banks of the Thamalakane River. This is an area where red lechwe antelope can still be seen grazing alongside local donkeys, goats and cattle.
Day 11. Okavango Delta Highlights. Okavango Delta, Botswana. Accommodation. Elephant Bush Camp, Okavango Delta.Leaving early, we begin our excursion into the Okavango Delta in an open 4x4 truck to the mokoro station. Here we will be introduced to the local Tswana Polers who will be our guides for our overnight expedition. We travel by mokoro (dugout canoe) amongst the giant lily pads in search of resident wildlife as we meander the labyrinthine of channels to our tented camp. The Okavango Delta is a natural wetland spreading over some 1.6million hectares and offers a perfect habitat for the many species of wildlife that roam here freely.
Day 12. Okavango Delta to Maun Accommodation. Sitatunga Camp, Maun.Rising to the sounds of the wild we enjoy our breakfast and then take an easy paced mokoro ride out of the Okavango Delta back to the polers’ station from where we will drive back to Maun. We aim to get back to Maun around lunch time allowing the opportunity to enjoy an optional scenic flight over this spectacular UNESCO world heritage site. Alternatively, the afternoon can be spent at leisure at the pool and bar area. 6 images Sitatunga Camp, Maun
Day 13. Maun to Ghanzi Highlights. Kalahari Bushman Walk, Botswana. Accommodation. Ghanzi Trailblazers, Ghanzi.Today we make our way to Ghanzi, skirting the northern part of Kalahari Desert. Here, in this midst of (seemingly) barren terrain - we meet the San/Bushman and have a guided bush walk for a cultural experience and insight into these ancient people’s way of life. Around the campfire at night, you can experience the ancient dance rituals of the San/Bushman. On special occasions, this could be a healing or trance dance, which can continue all night, and is an intense spiritual experience. 3 images Kalahari Bushman Walk, Botswana 5 images Ghanzi Trailblazers, Ghanzi
Day 14. Ghanzi to Windhoek, Namibia Highlights. Windhoek, Namibia. Accommodation. Urban Camp, Windhoek.We depart Ghanzi and Botswana crossing the border into Namibia and on to its capital Windhoek. Windhoek is small compared to most capital cities with a population of around 200,000.The city centre is characterised by a proliferation of German style buildings, a lasting reminder of Namibia's early colonial history. Take the opportunity to enjoy a night out at one of the local restaurants or visit the famous 'Joe’s Beer House' 6 images Urban Camp, Windhoek
Day 15. Windhoek to Etosha National Park Accommodation. Etosha National Park, Namibia.We travel north from Windhoek to Etosha National Park a vast reserve of over 20,000 sq km surrounding a central salt pan and home to over 114 mammals and 340 bird species. On arrival, we enjoy a game drive en-route to our accommodation, which is situated near a floodlit waterhole allowing us to game view from the camp after dark. Observers frequently see a range of night visitors including elephant, giraffe, zebra, even lion and hyena that come in to have a drink. 6 images Etosha National Park, Namibia
Day 16. Etosha National Park Highlights. Etosha National Park, Namibia. Accommodation. Etosha National Park, Namibia.Today, we enjoy a full day game driving in this magnificent animal kingdom - taking in the park’s main characteristic, the salt pan and the abundance of wildlife that drink at the waterholes that dot the park. After a full day game driving, we return to our accommodation in the evening to enjoy our last evening around the floodlit watering holes, observing natural animal behaviour at its best.
Day 17. Etosha to Spitzkoppe Highlights. Spitzkoppe, Namibia. Accommodation. Spitzkoppe Community Camp.We game drive out of Etosha National Park and turn south making our way to the beautiful Damaraland region where we spend a night under canvas at the breathtaking Spitzkoppe .
Day 18. Spitzkoppe to Swakopmund Accommodation. Amanpuri Lodge, Swakopmund.With the mighty Spitzkoppe at our back, we make our way to the Atlantic coast and to Swakopmund. This quaint town offers exciting things to do and places to explore. Try some adventure desert-based activities like quad biking, sand boarding, skydiving (weather permitting). For those seeking a quieter time here, enjoy the other side of Swakopmund: shops, restaurants, museums, the aquarium, art galleries or simply walk along the promenade admiring the cool breeze of the Atlantic Ocean and the beautiful German-style architecture. 6 images Amanpuri Lodge, Swakopmund
Day 19. Swakopmund Highlights. Swakopmund, Namibia. Accommodation. Amanpuri Lodge, Swakopmund.Today is a free day to enjoy all this quaint seaside town has to offer - from the many optional activities to the German patisseries, cafés and restaurants. 4 images Swakopmund, Namibia 6 images Amanpuri Lodge, Swakopmund
Day 20. Swakopmund to Sossus On Foot Camp, Khomas Region Highlights. Sossus On Foot Camp, Khomas Region, Namibia. The Tropic of Capricorn. Accommodation. Sossus On Foot Camp, Khomas Region, Namibia.Continuing south, we cross over the Tropic of Capricorn, stopping for a photo opportunity en-route to our desert camp where we will spend the night under canvas.
Day 21. Sossus On Foot Camp, Khomas Region to Sesriem Area Highlights. Dune 45, Namib Naukluft National Park, Namibia. Namib Naukluft Park, Namibia. Sesriem Canyon, Namibia. Sossusvlei, Namibia. Accommodation. Little Sossus Lodge, Namib Naukluft .Rising early, we leave our camp and make our way to the Namib Naukluft National Park to trek to the top of the famous Dune 45, rising 170m high! Bring your camera – the shifting colours of the desert as the sun climbs throughout the morning offers some brilliant photographic opportunities. After a well-earned breakfast, we continue deeper into the park for a short shuttle ride and nature walk to ‘Dead Vlei’, amidst the giant sand dunes. Departing from the dunes, we stop off at the smaller Sesriem Canyon where the multiple layers of rock and pebbles make for an interesting insight into what lies beneath this desolate area. It's then off to our accommodation for the night. 3 images Dune 45, Namib Naukluft National Park, Namibia 4 images Namib Naukluft Park, Namibia 1 images Sesriem Canyon, Namibia 4 images Sossusvlei, Namibia 4 images Little Sossus Lodge, Namib Naukluft
Day 22. Sesriem Area to Fish River Canyon Highlights. Fish River Canyon, Namibia. Accommodation. Canon Roadhouse, Fish River Canyon.Moving on, we head south through barren and rocky landscapes and desert succulents to the world’s second largest canyon. Fish River Canyon is one of the natural wonders of Africa, some 500m deep and over 160km long and we spend time exploring the majestic views from the rim and visit the canyon’s infamous sharp river bend known as ‘Hell’s Corner". 4 images Fish River Canyon, Namibia 5 images Canon Roadhouse, Fish River Canyon
Day 23. Fish River Canyon to Orange (Gariep) River Highlights. Orange (Gariep) River, Namibia. Accommodation. Felix Unite.Leaving the majestic Fish River Canyon area we travel south to the Gariep (Orange) river. Our accommodation lies on the banks of the river on the Namibian side. On arrival, we have the opportunity to partake in an optional canoe safari on the river to see the striking Richtersveld scenery, or simply relax on the water’s edge. 3 images Orange (Gariep) River, Namibia 4 images Felix Unite
Day 24. Orange (Gariep) River to Cederberg Area Highlights. Cederberg, South Africa. Accommodation. Highlanders Camp, Cederberg.Crossing into South Africa, we continue south through rocky outcrops and the famous 'Namaqualand', well known for its prolific display of wildflowers that bloom in the spring (best seen between August – September). Our accommodation is nestled against a hill overlooking the Olifants River with views of the vast Cederberg Mountains. It is here we have the opportunity to sample some of the beautiful wines of the region and celebrate our last night together. 1 images Cederberg, South Africa 4 images Highlanders Camp, Cederberg
Day 25. Cederberg to Cape Town Highlights. Cape Town, South Africa.Packing for the last time, we board our truck and drive to Cape Town where our tour ends.
Saba Lodge is selectively chosen as it boasts of quality and comfort as well as being conveniently located. Within 15 minutes drive of O.R Tambo Airport, this establishment offers clients a taste of what their African adventure will entail. Set on 8000 square metres of land, with a tranquil rustic theme, a large deck and swimming pool, free uncapped fibre optic wifi, guests are sure to enjoy their stay. Rooms - single, dorm, family and twin/double en-suite rooms available. Breakfast and airport transfer available.
* Suggested pre and post tour accommodation can be booked together with your tour. Please enquire at the time of booking.Suggested Post-Tour Accommodation. Ashanti Lodge, Gardens, Cape Town
Please note: As from 1st May 2018, we will change our accommodation from Ashanti Lodge in Greenpoint to Ashanti Lodge in Gardens. Please check your tour voucher to confirm that your tour starting and ending point is correct before departing. Situated at the foot of Table Mountain and in walking distances to the city centre, Ashanti Lodge Backpackers in Gardens is your gateway to Cape Town. This gorgeous Victorian Mansion offers backpacker dormitories to single, double and twin rooms with shared bathroom facilities. Chill next to the stunning pool, join the party in the legendary Kumasi Café/Bar with its cool cocktails, tasty food and fabulous mountain views or go explore the city's highlights close by.
* Suggested pre and post tour accommodation can be booked together with your tour. Please enquire at the time of booking.
This tour departs Johannesburg early on day 1; we strongly recommend therefore that you plan to arrive the day before departure to overcome any jet-lag and to acclimatise to Africa. We would be happy to book pre-tour accommodation for you – please call or email us (or speak to your agent) with your arrival details and accommodation requirements. However please book early to avoid disappointment and the risk of having to find more expensive (or less convenient) lodgings.
If time allows, we also suggest planning a night or two extra (after your tour) to make the most of this part of Africa. Accommodation is usually available locally on arrival but you can also pre-book this with Acacia. There is a variety of activities and excursions in the Cape Town area you can arrange locally or with your Tour Leader.
ACTIVITIES & EXCURSIONS:
These are optional activities that are booked during your holiday and paid directly to the provider while on tour. These options offer a variety of experiences and allow you the freedom to decide what activities you would like to do.
Twin share accommodation with facilities (22 nights) twin share tents with sleeping bag, pillow and mattress (2 night) some accommodation may have a bar or swimming pool.
24-seater, self contained, custom-built safari truck with onboard tables, plug sockets, freezer, water tank, library, i-pod jack, safety features and 70-litre individual lockers, 4x4 safari vehicles, mokoro (dugout canoe) and river boat.
GAME PARK VISITS:
In order to maximise the quality of game driving and to comply with local authority rulings, some of our National Park visits and game viewing is carried out using services provided by local African ground handlers. As well as enhancing our experience using local guides and smaller vehicles it also allows us to contribute at a ‘grassroots’ level to local economies from which local people benefit. These local services are included in the price.
This is a participation tour and your help will be needed in assisting with the various day to day duties, such as shopping, cooking and keeping the truck tidy (usually on a rota basis). But don’t worry it’s not all hard work and it’s a great way to meet the local people and get to know your fellow travellers. Your contribution benefits the success of the tour - most people find the greater their involvement, the greater their enjoyment of the whole trip.
24 Breakfasts, 19 Lunches, 19 Dinners
21 nights twin share accommodation, 1 night pre-erected en suite tented camp (Delta); 2 night bush camping at Spitzkoppe and Khomas Region (equipment supplied).
Are you keen on water activities? Then why not to combine photographing with an enjoyable ride on the river making your vacation even more exciting! The Chobe River is known for its peaceful turquoise waters that create the atmosphere of tranquility and sedate you. No severe currents or rapids are to be expected, so even those not good at swimming should not be afraid of waters, you are guaranteed complete safety.