13 Days 12 Nights
Driving distance approx. 50 km; driving time approx. 1 hour Upon your arrival at OR Tambo International Airport, you will be greeted by your transfer driver and taken to the Avalon Guesthouse in Pretoria. There will be time to relax and freshen up before joining your guide on a city tour through Pretoria. A visit to the Union Building and the Voortrekker Monument Museum will give you a glimpse into the complex history of South Afri- ca. In the evening, you will have dinner at a superb restaurant (at own cost) and spend the night at the Avalon Guesthouse.
Driving distance approx. 500 km; driving time approx. 6-7 hours After breakfast and a tour briefing, you embark on your journey and head south. Driving through the Free State Province, you travel to the picturesque town of Clarens, which is home to many artists and craftsmen. After lunch (at own cost), you continue to the Golden Gate National Park where you will get your first glimpse of South Africa’s spectacular mountain scenery. To- day’s destination is the Greenfire Drakensberg Lodge close to the Royal Natal National Park in the majestic Drakensberg Mountains. Enjoy the tranquillity and spectacular views! After dinner, you can end the day sitting by the crackling fireplace or head back to your cozy log cabin. You will overnight at the Greenfire Drakensberg Lodge.
Today is set aside for outdoor activities in this spectacular mountain scenery. The choice is yours! Following various trails, you can take a closer look at rock paintings of the San or look for the elusive Cape vulture. From the highest point, you will have splendid views over the Drakensberg Mountains as well as the Sterkfontein Dam and the Maloti Mountains in Lesotho. Furthermore, you can also enjoy the beautiful surroundings on horseback. There are riding options for beginners as well as experienced riders. Enjoy the day in great outdoors and the wonderful landscape around you. You will spend another night at the Greenfire Drakensberg Lodge.
Driving distance approx. 600 km; driving time approx. 8-9 hours In the morning, your journey continues to the famous Battlefields where you will visit the Blood River Monument as well as the Ncome Museum. Both sites are separated by a river which, on 16 December 1838, was the scene of one of the bloodiest battles between the Voortrekkers and the Zulus. This fierce battle has always played a major role in South African history, even up until today. After lunch, you will travel through the rolling hills of Kwa-Zulu Natal to the coastal town of St. Lucia. Dinner tonight will be at a restaurant in town (at own cost). You will stay at Forest Lodge.
Driving distance approx. 120 km; driving time approx. 2 hours + game drives Today is dedicated to game viewing in the iSimangaliso Wetland Park, which was named Greater St. Lucia Wetland Park until 2007. Common sights in the park are rhinos, waterbucks, nyalas, buffaloes, and large kudu herds and if you are in luck you might be able to see a leopard on the hunt. From various viewpoints, you will get a glimpse of the Indian Ocean and, when traveling in whale season, even a small chance to watch Southern Right Whales. After an exciting wildlife experience, you will reach Cape Vidal. End your game drive in a rather unusual way by taking a refreshing dip in the Indian Ocean! In the afternoon, you will enjoy a boat trip on the St. Lucia Estuary. Hippos, crocodiles and various species of waterfowl can be observed from your boat. Again, you will enjoy dinner at a restaurant in town (at own cost) and stay once more at Forest Lodge.
Game Reserve Driving distance approx. 200 km; driving time approx. 3 hours + game drives An early start is on the agenda today as you travel to the Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park, one of the most beautiful parks in Southern Africa and well-known for its black and white rhino breeding project. You will explore the park on game drives and apart from rhinos, you might even see the rest of the Big Five in their natural habitat as well as various species of antelope and a large variety of birds. After lunch at Hilltop Camp (at own cost), you will slowly but surely make your way to the gate. Enjoy some more game viewing en route before finally leaving the park and heading north. Today’s destination is the Pongola Game Reserve which is one of South Africa’s oldest game reserves. You will have the beautiful White Elephant Bush Camp exclusively to yourselves. While sipping a cold drink, you can enjoy a stunning sunset and the magnificent views over the bushland, Lake Jozani and the majestic Lebombo Mountains in the background. Round off the day by relaxing at the crackling campfire after dinner. Overnight at the White Elephant Bush Camp.
Driving distance approx. 250 km; driving time approx. 4-5 hours In the early morning, you will go on a bushwalk – an incredible experience and an absolute must at White Elephant. A professional walking guide will accompany you. Encounter the African bush from a different angle and without any disturbing noises, feel connected with nature and soak up the sights, sounds, and smells. Back at camp, a sumptuous breakfast will be served. Thereafter you continue to the Kingdom of Swaziland. During a visit to the Mantenga Cultural Village, an authentic living museum, you can gain insight into the rich Swazi culture, customs, and traditions. Finally, you will reach the Foresters Arms Country Hotel near Mbabane.
Today’s explorations in Swaziland will be defined according to your wishes. During dinner the evening before, your guide will present the various options to you and together you will determine the agenda for today. Stunning landscapes, friendly people and a rich cultural heritage await you! Depending on weather conditions, you can explore the surroundings of the lodge or the Milwane Wildlife Reserve by mountain bike, on foot or on horseback (optional). Visit the colorful markets and engage with the local people as well as Swazi arts and crafts. At a candle factory, you can see how the famous and decorative Swazi Candles are being made and at glass manufacture, you can witness the magical art of glassblowing. You will spend another night at the Foresters Arms Country Hotel.
Driving distance approx. 200 km; driving time approx. 4 hours + game drives After breakfast, you will leave Swaziland behind as you travel to South Afri- ca’s largest wildlife sanctuary. Originally established as a game reserve, the Kruger was granted the title of national park in 1926. Thanks to its huge size and the variety of landscapes, the Kruger National Park is home to all animal species of Southern Africa. Not only will you find large herds of elephants, rhinos, buffaloes, lions and leopards, but also around 150 species of mammals, more than 500 bird species and almost 100 different reptiles. On your game drives in the afternoon, you will explore the wildlife-rich southern part of the park. The night will be spent at the Skukuza Rest Camp.
The entire day is dedicated to game viewing in the Kruger National Park. Together with your guide, you will set off on an extensive game drive in your tour vehicle in search of impressive wildlife encounters. Your guide will share interesting facts about fauna and flora with you and you will be surprised how much you have learned by now. Alternatively, you can book a game drive in an open safari vehicle (optional). In the early evening, you will have the opportunity to join a night game drive, accompanied by a national park ranger, and look for nocturnal animals (optional). You spend another night at the Skukuza Rest Camp.
Driving distance approx. 70 km; driving time approx. 1-2 hours + game drives In the early morning, you can either leisurely wake up or opt to join a walking safari, accompanied by a park ranger (optional). After breakfast, you embark on your last game drive. look forward to more exciting wildlife sightings! Reaching the park gate at around midday, it will be time to leave the Kruger National Park. Via Hazyview, you continue to the lovely Hamilton Parks Country Lodge. The remainder of the day will be at your disposal. The lush evergreen garden is a perfect place to wander around or simply unwind. Especially on hot days, there is nothing better than taking a refreshing dip in the swimming pool. Enjoy dinner and an overnight stay at the Hamilton Parks Country Lodge.
Driving distance approx. 250 km, driving time approx. 4 hours A day full of exploring the various highlights along the Panorama Route awaits! Look forward to visiting God’s Window with vast views across the lowveld and the Kruger National Park in the distance. You will also stop at the Bourke’s Luck Potholes and the Three Rondavels which are three round mountain tops resembling traditional African homesteads. Take in the stunning views and marvel at the impressive Blyde River Canyon. You will stay once more at the Hamilton Parks Country Lodge.
Driving distance approx. 330 km; driving time approx. 4-5 h After a hearty breakfast at the lodge, you will drive through the province of Mpumalanga, heading back to Johannesburg. Your guide will take you to the airport and you will be able to fly back home in the evening. Our guests who take part in the 20-day tour Fascinating South Africa will contin- ue their journey and fly to George on the Garden Route.
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