Spot the Big Five and the many other species of animal found in the Kruger National Park, revel in the cultural riches of the Kingdom of Swaziland and travel through the vast KwaZulu-Natal province. Highlights include a dusk open vehicle game drive and traditional Boma dinner under the African night sky as well as a visit to a Zulu tribal village.
Day 1: Meet your tour leader, driver and travelling companions at the Holiday Inn Garden Court Sandton City at 7am. At 7:30am head east to Mpumalanga, the land of the rising sun. Journey past the mining town of Witbank and historical Middelburg towards Belfast, a centre for sheep and dairy farming, maize, potatoes and timber. Continue through South Africa's trout fishing capital, Dullstroom, on to Lydenburg on the eastern escarpment. Arrive in the virtually untouched Gold Rush town of Pilgrim's Rest in time for lunch.
Meander along the Panorama Route with vistas of the Olifants River Valley, the eastern lowveld and the spectacular Blyde River Canyon. Scenic highlights of the trip include extraordinary potholes and rock formations known as Bourke's Potholes, named after the owner of Bourke's Luck, the site of a once profitable gold mine and God's Window, a majestic view across the lowveld to Mozambique. Check into your hotel in the late afternoon. Hotel/Lodge: Hazyview Protea Hotel or similar. Includes: (D);
Day 2: Equipped with a packed breakfast, your camera and plenty of sunscreen, set off at sunrise in an open vehicle for a full day's game viewing in the Kruger National Park. Bigger than Israel, the Kruger National Park is home to more than 146 mammal species, 507 bird species and 400 different trees.
Established in 1889, the park is 380km long and 100 km wide and covers 21,497 square kilometres. Take a break, and enjoy a picnic lunch at one of the Park's many picnic spots. The afternoon ends with a return trip to your hotel and leisure time. Hotel/Lodge: Hazyview Protea Hotel or similar. Includes: (B), (L);
Day 3: This morning is yours to spend at leisure with the option of exploring the Kruger Park by coach. At midday depart for the Hoedspruit Research and Breeding Centre for Endangered Species where breeding programmes for threatened species such as cheetahs and wild dogs have received international recognition.
View wildlife from an open safari vehicle while on a game drive through a game reserve in the cool of the late afternoon, early evening. End the day with a Boma dinner around a fire under the African night sky. Hotel/Lodge: Hazyview Protea Hotel or similar. Includes: (B), (D);
Day 4: Cross the South African border at Jeppe's Reef into the mountain kingdom of Swaziland. Delight in vistas of deep valleys, steep gradients, vast forests and rushing rivers on the way to your hotel in Mbabane, the national capital. En route stop off at the Ngwenya glass factory where a variety of Swaziland souvenirs are created entirely from recycled glass. Find your hotel nestled in the Ezulwini (Place of Heaven) Valley. Dine in style at one of Swaziland's premier restaurants, the Terrace Restaurant, at the Royal Swazi Sun and Casino. Hotel/Lodge: Ezulwini Sun or similar. Includes: (B), (D);
Day 5: Appreciate innovative and original Swazi crafts and curios at the Mantega Craft Village. An orientation drive through Manzini introduces you to this Swazi commercial centre. Golela, on the western slopes of the Lebombo mountains provides the gateway into KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa's cane sugar producing province. Named after the thorny monkey ropes that grow in the riverine forests of the region, Hluhluwe is your destination. Experience first hand the traditions and customs of the Zulu people at a Zulu Cultural Village before returning to your hotel for dinner. Hotel/Lodge: Zulu Nyala Heritage Hotel or similar. Includes: (B), (D);
Day 6: Rise with the sun and look out for wildlife on a game drive through a private game reserve. Return to your hotel for a hearty breakfast. Journey down the north coast of KwaZulu Natal to the lagoon paradise of the Greater St Lucia Wetland Park, a combined estuary and lagoon system. Sightseeing includes a cruise on the St Lucia estuary where crocodiles and hippo's abound. Head south again to arrive in Durban for a late afternoon drop off. Includes: (B).
Daily departure, on request ex Johannesburg. Tour can be customized on request for any departure and program. Quotations submitted according to specific requests.
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