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Premium Southern Africa in Depth

Premium Southern Africa in Depth

From $ 11,495 AUD

Description

Uncover the true beauty of southern Africa on a 14-day Premium adventure through South Africa, Zimbabwe and Botswana. Spend three unforgettable days in the Greater Kruger region, cruise down the Zambezi River at sunset, marvel at the showstopping Victoria Falls and look out for a wealth of elephants in Chobe National Park. Set out in search of wildlife on a series of game drives, cruise down the Chobe River, hang out with a family of meerkats at the Ntwetwe Salt Pans and admire the curious beauty of the Makgadikgadi Pans. With expert knowledge from local guides you’ll discover the best of this magnificent part of the world.

Trip Name
Premium Southern Africa in Depth
Last Updated
2021-09-18
Days
14
Capacity
12
Highlights
  • Enjoy two magnificent evenings at your feature stay camp. Perfectly positioned on the Namibian banks of the Chobe River, join a full-day boat cruise through lesser-explored channels and islands.
  • Uncover the unique beauty of the Makgadikgadi Pans during a 4x4 excursion through the sprawling landscape followed by sunset drinks, then meet an entertaining family of Meerkats on the edge of the Ntwetwe Salt Pans.
  • Visit the thundering Victoria Falls, one of the world's most spectacular natural wonders, followed by intimate sunset river cruise with your own chef preparing canapes and drinks on the Zambezi river.
  • Spot Chobe National Park's abundance of wildlife and the world’s highest concentration of elephants from multiple vantage points with an early morning 4x4 game drive, and an afternoon boat cruise along the picturesque Chobe River.
  • Spend three spectacular nights at your lodge feature stay in a private reserve within the Greater Kruger Region. Sleep in comfortable chalets with outdoor showers and private terraces, and seek out the Big Five with two full days in Kruger National Park, in 4x4s with an expert local guide.

Itinerary

ITINERARY CHANGES Our itineraries are updated regularly throughout the year based on customer feedback and to reflect the current situation in each destination. The information included in this Essential Trip Information may therefore differ from when you first booked your trip. It is important that you review this information prior to travel so that you have the latest updates. Due to weather, local conditions, transport schedules, public holidays, or other factors, further changes may be necessary to your itinerary once in-country. The order and timing of included activities in each location may also vary seasonally to ensure our travellers have the best experience. Your tour leader will keep you up to date with any such changes once on tour. OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES A selection of optional activities that have been popular with past travellers are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only for some of what might be available. Prices are approximate, are for entrance only, and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability, and maybe on a join-in basis. It may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination, so some pre-planning for what you are most interested in is advised. When it's recommended that travellers pre-book these activities, look for a note in the Special Information section of the day-to-day itinerary. For most, they can either be organised independently on the day, or let your leader know you are interested in the Group Meeting and they can assist. Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. Although it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Medium and high-risk activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with organising these activities. Activities that contravene our Responsible Travel policies are also not listed. Please remember that the decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk. ROAD CONDITIONS AND INFRASTRUCTURE IN AFRICA: Roads in Africa are often in very poor condition, which makes it hard on our vehicles. Our vehicles are serviced regularly and are generally in good condition, but breakdowns can and do happen. Sometimes the going on this trip is quite tough, the distances covered fairly large and some of the roads and tracks are not exactly smooth or free from dust, but the rewards are exceptional. The travelling times indicated in our Essential Trip Information is just a rough guide and is dependent on various factors that may be outside our control, such as road conditions, weather and time spent at borders. DRIVE TIMES: The travel times listed in the day to day itinerary are a guide only. Please be aware that delays may occur and please be patient - it's all part of the experience afterall! Additionally, the travel times do not include time spent on game drives as these can vary with each departure. NAMIBIA AND BOTSWANA IN PEAK SEASON Namibia and Botswana are becoming increasingly popular tourist destinations. Despite the influx of travellers, bed numbers are not being increased to match the demand. This intentional move is aimed at minimising the environmental impact of tourism and keeping the destinations exclusive. It is therefore becoming more and more difficult for us to confirm our allocation with our usual suppliers, particularly in peak season. We may use alternative accommodation which could affect driving times and distances listed in the Essential Trip Information. However we will always use properties of the same standard and ensure that no included activities will be affected.

Day 1 - Johannesburg
Welcome to South Africa! Your trip begins in Johannesburg, where you’ll be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel. Please ensure that you organise the details of your arrival transfer well in advance. You'll meet the rest of your group and leader for a welcome meeting at 6pm, but if you do happen to arrive early, the day is yours to spend at leisure. After your meeting, join your leader and fellow travellers for dinner at a local family owned grill house. South Africa enjoys a diverse food scene flavoured by its multicultural influences. This evening you may like to try some boerewors, a spiced South African sausage, or perhaps some springbok carpaccio.
Day 2 - Greater Kruger National Park
Set off early for a drive to Greater Kruger National Park, arriving just in time for lunch at an exceptionally intimate lodge, your feature stay accommodation for the next three evenings. Hidden away on a private reserve in Greater Kruger, the lodge is in perfect harmony with its wild surroundings. Chalets feature first-class amenities, with private en suites, indoor and outdoor showers, air-conditioning and a gorgeous swimming pool for cooling off. Sit back and relax in the cosy lounge of the main lodge or one of several viewing decks and take in spectacular views of the Drakensburg Mountains. In the afternoon you'll be taken to a neighbouring game reserve for your first open 4x4 vehicle game drive. Experience close encounters with wild animals in their own habitat, and if you’re lucky, you may meet lions, elephants, rhinos and leopards. Retire to your lodge in the evening.
Day 3 - Greater Kruger National Park
Rise early and make the journey into the heart of Kruger National Park. Upon entry, you'll find yourself in the perfect position to catch a glimpse of one, or hopefully all, of the Big Five. Take a packed breakfast at a picnic spot then proceed with a full day of wildlife safari, stopping off at waterholes and various other points to observe these animals in their natural habitat. One of the largest game reserves in Southern Africa, Kruger National Park is not only home to members of the Big Five, but also 500 bird species, 100 species of reptile and 150 mammal species. The endangered African wild dog, herbivores like hippo, zebra, giraffe and numerous different types of antelope also enjoy the park’s rich mosaic of habitats, including savanna, mixed acacia woodland, rocky hills and mopane woodland. Return to the lodge this evening to relax and relive your favourite moments from the day.
Day 4 - Greater Kruger National Park
Return to Kruger National Park for another thrilling game drive. This is an opportunity to catch a glimpse of any animals the group didn't see the day before. Today's game drive will finish in time for sunset and dinner on one of the viewing decks at your lodge. Enjoy a wonderful meal and take a moment to sit back and hear the sounds of the bush – maybe even the roar of a lion in the distance. After to dinner, retreat to a bonfire under a canopy of stars.
Day 5 - Victoria Falls
Rise early and depart for Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport, where you will say goodbye to South Africa and board a mid-morning flight to Livingstone airport in Zambia, your gateway to the Victoria Falls. On arrival, cross the Victoria Falls bridge into Zimbabwe and get your first preview of the magnificent cascades. Continue to your lodge accommodation, which serves up stunning views of uninterrupted wilderness and a waterhole frequented by elephant, buffalo, kudu and more. Spend the afternoon relaxing by the pool or spotting wildlife from any of the multiple viewing decks around the lodge. This evening head above the falls onto the Zambezi River and embark on a small and intimate Sundowner River Cruise. The specially designed jet-propelled boats allow you to reach the shallow water among the islands directly above the Victoria Falls. Your own chef will prepare canapes and serve drinks while the captain navigates the islands above the thundering Victoria Falls. Sit back in your comfortable lounge chair and look out for crocodiles lazing on the banks or elephants and hippos submerging themselves in the river – this is truly an experience to remember.
Day 6 - Chobe National Park
This morning, visit the unforgettable Victoria Falls – one of the world's true natural wonders, forming the largest sheet of falling water in the world when in full flow. Once inside the park, your guide will take you through the falls area, stopping at different vantage points along the way to explain the history of the falls and their surrounds. After an exciting morning at the falls, depart Zimbabwe and make the journey to Chobe National Park in Botswana. The afternoon is free to walk in Kasane town (watch out for wandering warthogs!), sit poolside on the edge of the Chobe River and watch the sun set, or perhaps opt for an optional afternoon Game Drive in the Chobe National park.
Day 7 - Chobe National Park
Start the day with a game drive through Chobe National Park, the first designated national park in Botswana. Chobe is known for its huge population of elephants and buffalo and you may well see them drinking at the local watering hole during the drive. Then head back to the lodge for breakfast. Afterwards embark on a cruise along the picturesque Chobe River, an ideal location for spotting bird life such as saddle-billed storks, malachite kingfishers, fish eagles and beautiful bee-eaters as well as hippos, crocodiles and large families of elephants often seen crossing the river between the boats. You will be joined by other travellers on the boat cruise which has a toilet and small bar to purchase drinks. Enjoy a drink on board and watch the sun set over the river.
Day 8 - Chobe National Park
Today is free to do as you please in Chobe National Park. You may like to book an optional game drive or river cruise, or simply relax at your lodge. As this is a combination trip, a meeting will take place at 6pm this evening to welcome any new travellers joining you on the next leg of your journey. After your meeting, join your group and leader for dinner at the lodge. Enjoy a celebration of indigenous food and the rich flavours of Africa as you dine alongside the scenic Chobe River.
Day 9 - Chobe River (Namibian Side)
Rise early for a morning game drive in Chobe National Park. You might see elephants drinking at the water's edge, large herds of cape buffaloes and many impalas within the park. Head back to the lodge for breakfast, then journey to the Ngoma Border Post before continuing to the Namibian side of the Chobe River. Here you will find your feature stay accommodation, the fabulous Chobe River Camp, in a prime position across the river from the world-renowned Chobe Nature Reserve. Tented chalets are gorgeously constructed in line with the camp's green philosophy, using indigenous Mopane timber and canvas. Enjoy home comforts in a wild setting, including solar power, en suite bathrooms and a private deck offering unrivalled views of the vast, wildlife-rich bush. Arrive in time for a hearty lunch at the lodge, then enjoy some downtime to relax by the pool, spot wildlife from the bar or soak up the wild surroundings on the banks of the Chobe River. Speak to your leader about some fabulous optional activities for the afternoon, including a canoe trip, guided walking trail or a birding drive.
Day 10 - Chobe River (Namibian side)
After breakfast, head out for a full-day cruise on the Chobe River. The privileged position of your camp allows you to access a part of the river that most visitors don’t get to see, which means you’ll have the special opportunity to view abundant wildlife without the crowds. This region offers a wildlife spotting experience like no other – with a bit of luck you will see large herds of elephants, buffalo and antelope. Enjoy lunch and refreshments on and island, explore the channels of the river and dock at a small island to appreciate the diverse bird life. After a memorable day, return to your lodge just in time for sunset – perhaps grab a drink at the bar to watch the changing colours of the spectacular landscape.
Day 11 - Makgadikgadi Pans
Heading south, continue your journey to the vast salt flats and grassy plains of the Makgadikgadi Pans. Located in the north-east of Botswana, the Makgadikgadi Pans are situated in the middle of a dry savanna and are all that remain of the former Lake Makgadikgadi. This afternoon, get to know your gold-hued, otherworldly surroundings during a 4x4 excursion. The immense, sprawling salt flat will unfold in front of you as you look out for aardvark, ostriches and mongooses. Surrounded by the Nata sanctuary, a breeding ground for thousands of water birds, the horizon is tinted pink by clouds of flamingos and pelicans. Savour the ethereal landscape as you sit out on the pans and enjoy drinks and snacks as the sun sets. Return to the lodge for dinner and relive the highlights of an exciting day.
Day 12 - Boteti River
Embrace a very early start this morning and head out with a packed breakfast in hand. Today’s experience will surely be one to remember. Travel to the edge of the Ntwetwe salt pan, home to a resident family of entertaining Meerkats. With the aid of trackers, arrive in time to observe their morning rituals as the sun rises. Watch the meerkats bask in the morning sun before heading out for their daily foraging – the fantastic conditions and lighting will help you snap an unforgettable picture of these marvellous creatures. Stop at a neighbouring lodge for lunch, then continue to the Boteti River. Another magnificent spot for viewing wildlife, the river attracts some 25,000 zebras each year who migrate from the neighbouring Makgadigadi Pans Game Reserve. As the only permanent source of water in the area, the river also receives visits from lions, cheetah, oryx, springbok, giraffe, elephants and many more. In the evening, retire to your delightful eco-lodge, featuring tented rooms with en suites and solar power.
Day 13 - Boteti River
Start the day with a 4x4 game drive under the guidance of a skilled game ranger. Your eco-lodge has a private conservancy, home to antelopes, blue wildebeest, zebras and giraffes. Predators like lions, leopards and wild dogs also make regular appearances on the farm. Your ranger will share knowledge about the habits of these animals as you seek them out. After your exhilarating game drive, return to your lodge for lunch and some downtime to relax by the pool. In the evening, embark on nighttime game drive through the private conservancy to search for animals that reveal themselves as the sun goes down – a special opportunity not always possible in the national parks.
Day 14 - Maun
Set out on a guided nature walk this morning with a professional guide. View plants, trees and animals from a different perspective and observe close-up details often missed on game drives. Your guide will provide expert knowledge and help you gain a deeper understanding of the environment. Then it's time to head to Maun, the gateway of the Okavango Delta. For those interested, there is the opportunity to fly over the delta in a small plane for a bird's-eye view. This is a great way to appreciate the vast scale of this waterscape. Your leader can give you more information on this activity and how to reserve a place. The trip concludes in Maun, but this doesn’t mean the adventure has to end. If you’d like to spend more time here, we’ll be happy to organise additional accommodation (subject to availability). Please speak to your booking agent ahead of time.

Trip Dates

StartEndPrice FromRoom Type
19-02-202204-03-2022AUD $ 11,495-
23-04-202206-05-2022AUD $ 11,495-
14-05-202227-05-2022AUD $ 11,495-
18-06-202201-07-2022AUD $ 11,495-
25-06-202208-07-2022AUD $ 11,960-
02-07-202215-07-2022AUD $ 11,960-
16-07-202229-07-2022AUD $ 12,420-
30-07-202212-08-2022AUD $ 12,420-
06-08-202219-08-2022AUD $ 12,420-
20-08-202202-09-2022AUD $ 12,420-
27-08-202209-09-2022AUD $ 12,420-
03-09-202216-09-2022AUD $ 11,960-
10-09-202223-09-2022AUD $ 11,960-
17-09-202230-09-2022AUD $ 11,960-
01-10-202214-10-2022AUD $ 11,495-
29-10-202211-11-2022AUD $ 11,495-
18-02-202303-03-2023AUD $ 12,070-
22-04-202305-05-2023AUD $ 12,070-
13-05-202326-05-2023AUD $ 12,070-
17-06-202330-06-2023AUD $ 12,070-
24-06-202307-07-2023AUD $ 12,560-
01-07-202314-07-2023AUD $ 12,560-
15-07-202328-07-2023AUD $ 13,040-
29-07-202311-08-2023AUD $ 13,040-
05-08-202318-08-2023AUD $ 13,040-
19-08-202301-09-2023AUD $ 13,040-
26-08-202308-09-2023AUD $ 13,040-
02-09-202315-09-2023AUD $ 12,560-
09-09-202322-09-2023AUD $ 12,560-
16-09-202329-09-2023AUD $ 12,560-
30-09-202313-10-2023AUD $ 12,070-
28-10-202310-11-2023AUD $ 12,070-

Accommodation

Hotel (1 night),Lodge (12 nights)

Transport

4x4,Open 4x4 Safari Vehicle,Private vehicle,Plane,Riverboat

Map