Day 1: South Africa – Cederberg Mountain Region.
Leaving Cape Town we make our first stop at Table View and take photos of Table Mountain from across Table Bay. On the way to the Cederberg we visit !Khwa ttu where we enjoy a San guided tour and museum visit. After the tour, lunch will be prepared, after which we continue to our campsite in the Cederberg region. We arrive at our camp and your guides will give you a full briefing on the tour. Meals: Lunch, Dinner.
Day 2: Namaqualand – Gariep (Orange) River.
An early start, we head north via the distant town of Springbok, best known for its diamonds, copper and spring flowers. We then proceed to our camp located right beside the Namibian border. The camp is situated on the riverbank that forms the border between South Africa and Namibia. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 3: Namibia – Gariep (Orange) River - Fish River Canyon.
This morning there’s the chance to see the beautiful river valley by canoe or just relax at camp. After lunch we cross the border and travel to the Fish River Canyon. After a scenic walk along the edge of the canyon we enjoy our dinner while watching the sunset. This is also a fantastic photo opportunity. Optional Activities: Half-Day Canoe Adventure. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 4: Namib-Naukluft National Park.
We arrive at the Namib-Naukluft National Park and set up camp, then enjoy a short hike into the Sesriem Canyon. Tonight enjoy the star-studded sky and enduring silence of the Namib Desert, only occasionally interrupted by the call of a Jackal or, a rather unique lizard, the barking gecko! Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 5: Sossusvlei Dunes - Namib-Naukluft National Park.
This is our earliest morning as we prepare for our hike up Dune 45 to marvel at the sunrise. After our hike, we will have the chance to visit Sossusvlei. Later, we join a local expert on a guided hike and learn more about the unique desert ecosystem and how the Bushmen survived in the harsh desert conditions. Optional activity: Transfer into Deadvlei. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 6: Swakopmund.
After a brief photo stop while crossing the Tropic of Capricorn, we travel onto Namibia’s Atlantic coast and the adventure capital, Swakopmund. Just before we arrive in Swakopmund, we stop at the Walvis bay lagoon en route, where there is often flamingos to be seen. You will be briefed on the many optional activities available here and there is time to explore the town before dinner out at one of the local restaurants. Optional Activities: Dinner out. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch.
Day 7: Swakopmund.
The whole day is free to relax, explore or partake in one of the many activities available here. Most popular activities are quad biking in the dunes or tandem skydiving. On a clear day’s skydiving you can see all the way to the next day’s destination! Taking a walk around Swakopmund’s shops and having a leisurely lunch is also a great way to spend your day. Optional Activities: Quad biking, sand boarding, sky diving, dinner out etc. Meals: Breakfast.
Day 8: Spitzkoppe.
Leaving the coast we drive through arid landscapes to Spitzkoppe Mountain. The enormous granite monoliths dominate the otherwise flat landscape and we set up camp in the wild plain at the base of the mountain. This afternoon our guide will take us on a guided walk to explore the unique rock formations. The more adventurous among us may want to try some mountain climbing behind camp for some stunning views of the landscape. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 9: Himba Tribes.
After some early morning exploration we continue north and drive towards Kamanjab. Today we have the chance to experience life within a Himba tribe. The Himba are pastoral people and predominantly breed cattle or goats. They are easily recognisable by their unique style of dress. The Himba have been extremely diligent about upholding the roots of their culture but they are also very curious about visitors to their home. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Days 10-11: Etosha National Park.
Etosha is the venue for some of the most unique game viewing experiences in Africa. The sparse grasslands allow great opportunities to see animals normally hidden in dense vegetation. You may even see some of the amazing animals crossing the road in front of your truck! We will go on various game drives and spend our evenings at the abundant waterholes for some excellent game photography. Optional Activities: Night or dawn game drives in safari vehicles. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 12: Windhoek.
After an early morning game drive we set off towards Windhoek, the Capital city of Namibia. On the way we stop at a popular craft market where you can barter for handmade gifts to take home. Windhoek is not only the capital; it is also the cultural, social and economic centre of Namibia. On arrival in Windhoek our guide will take us on a short city tour in our truck. Joe’s Beer House is an exciting dining experience for our optional dinner out. Optional Activities: Dinner out. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch.
Day 13: Botswana - Ghanzi.
After an early start, we cross into Botswana and drive to Ghanzi. After setting up camp we meet with a local Bushman (San) community and experience some traditional tribal dancing. Optional activity: Bushman walk. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 14: Maun.
Our journey takes us from Ghanzi towards Maun. Maun is the gateway to the Okavango Delta and this afternoon we will prepare for this excursion, packing small overnight bags. There may be an opportunity this afternoon to visit the local crocodile farm or take a scenic flight over the Okavango Delta. Optional Activity: Crocodile Farm visit, Scenic Flight (time permitting). Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Days 15-16: Maun – Okavango Delta.
This morning we board the big 4x4 truck that will take us into the Delta. In high-water season it is sometimes necessary to take a boat to the poling station where we meet up with the members of a local community who will be showing us their homeland. We spend 2 nights bush camping in the wilderness and, if the water level allows, we will take a mokoro
(traditional canoe) trip through the waterways. We will also be going on some nature walks in the hope of seeing some wild animals in their natural habitat. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 17: Gweta.
We leave the Delta behind us and travel east to Planet Baobab. You can explore the bush around the campsite, lounge by the pool and view some of the region’s oldest Baobab trees. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 18: Botswana - Chobe National Park.
We travel to Chobe and this afternoon we enjoy a sunset river cruise as the animals are best spotted from the Chobe River. Elephants, Hippo, Crocodiles, Eland and many other creatures reside in Chobe so keep your cameras ready. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Days 19-21: Zimbabwe - Victoria Falls.
On arrival in Victoria Falls town, we have time to plan the next day’s adventure activities before we visit the spectacular Victoria Falls and experience the thundering of the mighty Zambezi. Most people will spend the next day White Water Rafting, a not-to-be-missed experience of a lifetime! Vic Falls offers many exciting alternatives such as a walk with lions or a bungee jump from the bridge that joins Zimbabwe with Zambia. Optional Activities: Chobe early morning game drive (Day 19 only), Zambezi Sunset Cruise, Full day white water rafting, Flight over the falls, Full day low/high water river boarding, bungee jump (solo), morning/afternoon lion or elephant encounter. Meals: 3 x Breakfast, 1 x Lunch (Day 19 only).
Day 22: Lusaka.
Leaving behind the natural wonder of Victoria Falls, we continue our expedition. After Livingstone we journey towards the bustling Zambian capital of Lusaka. You will notice the vegetation becoming sub-tropical and the roads a little rougher. Meals: Lunch, Dinner.
Day 23: Chipata.
Today is a long drive through lush country, crossing rivers en-route to Chipata, the gateway to the South Luangwa NP. Zambia is truly African and an adjustment from the more Western ways of Southern Africa. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 24: South Luangwa National Park.
Early in the morning we drive from Chipata to the border of the South Luangwa National Park where we spend the next two nights right on the banks of the Luangwa River. You can often see hippos and other animals from the camp bar. This afternoon we enjoy a sunset game drive in the South Luangwa NP. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 25: South Luangwa National Park.
In the morning you have the opportunity to take another game drive. The park is known for its high concentration of leopards and hippos. After lunch we visit the community run tribal textile project and a local village. Optional Activities: Morning Game Drive, Game Walk inside park. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 26: Lilongwe.
Today we visit the Lilongwe Wildlife Centre, Malawi’s only sanctuary for rescued, orphaned and injured wild animals. The Centre is set in 180 hectares of beautiful woodland, Lilongwe’s only protected wilderness. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Days 27-28: Kande Beach.
This morning we have the opportunity to participate in a 2 hour city tour, before we take a scenic drive to Kande beach. We will spend the next 2 days enjoying the many optional activities available, such as horse riding and different water sports. We will go on a guided village walk in order to meet the local people and learn more about Malawian life. Optional Activities: Scuba diving, snorkeling etc. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 29: Lake Malawi - Chitimba.
We travel further north and spend our last day in Malawi at Chitimba beach. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 30: Tanzania –Iringa.
Today we leave Malawi and enter Tanzania. We ascend out of the Great Rift Valley through some spectacular mountain passes, passing vast tea plantations in the highlands before arriving at our camp outside Iringa. This evening our dinner is in a local Masai Hut where we enjoy a traditional Tanzanian evening. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 31: Mikumi.
We leave Iringa today and head north to the Mikumi National Park. Mikumi is home to lion, zebra, wildebeest, impala, buffalo and elephant and today we have the opportunity to enjoy an optional afternoon game drive through the park. Optional Activities: Afternoon game drive in Mikumi NP. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 32: Dar es Salaam.
Our journey today brings us out of the cool highland region to the humid Indian ocean coastal city of Dar es Salaam. Meaning ‘house of peace’ in Arabic, Dar es Salaam is the economic and trade capital of Tanzania, but inland Dodoma remains the official capital city. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Days 33-35: Zanzibar.
A local ferry will take us from Dar es Salaam (where we leave the truck) to Zanzibar. We take a transfer to the northern part of the island where we will spend our time relaxing on the beach. On the 3rd day, we head south to Stone Town, the capital of Zanzibar, where we will spend the night. Here we have time exploring the historical and unique architecture. There are also spice and seafood markets to be explored. Optional Activities: Lunch and Dinner, Motorbike hire, Spice tour, Walking city tour, Swimming with Dolphins, Scuba Diving, Snorkelling etc. Meals: Breakfast x 3.
Day 36: Lushoto.
Today we leave Zanzibar and catch a ferry back to Dar es Salaam and return to our truck. We continue on to Lushoto, the major town and district centre, albeit small, in the Usambara Mountains, halfway between the coast and the parks. The popular pot plant Saintpaulia has its only wild occurrences in Tanzania, and particularly in the Usambara Mts. Here you will have the chance to hike in the surrounding area, or just relax. Meals: Breakfast, Dinner.
Day 37: Karatu.
Today we take a scenic drive via Arusha to the picturesque town of Karatu. The area’s cool climate, verdant hills, and pleasing views made it popular with settlers and farmers. Vast and extensive fields cover the slopes of the volcano and the lands around Karatu town. Karatu is also a stone’s throw away from the world famous Serengeti and Ngorongoro Conservation Area. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Days 38-40: Serengeti and Ngorongoro Excursion.
These 4 days are set aside for the optional 3-night camping excursion into the Serengeti National Park and Ngorongoro Crater. This area has one of the most densely inhabited large animal populations in Africa. On the first day from Karatu to Ngorongoro, there will be time for visiting the Oldupai gorge and museum.
The Serengeti excursion is in open topped 4x4 safari vehicles in order to tackle the challenging side roads in the parks. For those not going to the parks, take this chance to absorb some of the fascinating local culture. Optional Activities for those not doing the Serengeti Excursion: Various Serengeti & Ngorongoro Excursion packages, Lake Manyara game drives, day hiking & village tours and many more various day trips. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 41: Arusha.
Today the group meets up again and we have the chance to exchange stories of the various adventures that we participated in over the past few days. In the afternoon we visit the local Masai Mara Museum and Snake Park in Arusha. Optional Activities: camel ride to local Masaai village. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 42: Kenya – Nairobi.
After crossing the border into Kenya we continue to travel towards Nairobi. Most people will choose to go out together as a group for an optional meal at one of Nairobi’s excellent restaurants. Optional Activities: Dinner out. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch.
Day 43: Lake Naivasha.
Today, will meander inland to Lake Naivasha for a relaxing day on the lakeshore. You can go hiking in the area and activities include game and bird watching. One of the more popular optional activities is to go game viewing from a bicycle. An alternative way to spend your afternoon is to take high tea at Elsamere, the former home of Joy Adams, best known for her autobiographical novel, Born Free. Optional Activities: Cycle hire, High Tea at Elsamere, Boat Cruise. Meals: Lunch, Dinner.
Day 44: Masai Mara.
Our day begins with a game drive through Hell’s Gate National Park, before we enter the huge area of spectacular game viewing to photograph some of Africa’s most abundant wildlife, the Masai Mara. The Masai Mara is known as Africa’s Greatest Wildlife Reserve, famous for the abundance of lion, the Great Wildebeest Migration and the Masaai people, well known for their distinctive custom and dress, it is without a doubt Africa’s most famous safari destination. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 45: Lake Nakuru.
Leaving the Masai Mara, we travel north to Lake Nakuru where we will spend the afternoon game driving. Originally created as a bird sanctuary, Lake Nakuru was upgraded to National Park status in 1968. White rhino inhabit the transitional Savannah area surrounding the lake, with excellent photographic opportunities. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 46: Uganda - Kampala.
Leaving Lake Nakuru we drive to the Uganda border, and then stop for a photo at the equator. Later we arrive in Uganda’s capital and largest city, Kampala. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 47: Kampala / Ngamba Chimpanzee Sanctuary.
Although officially this day is set aside for everyone to explore Kampala, most people take an optional day trip to the Chimpanzee Sanctuary of Ngamba Island. This non-profit eco-friendly project was set up in 1998 to care for orphaned chimpanzees. Optional Activities: Ngamba Chimpanzee Excursion, Kampala Markets, Dinner Out. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch.
Day 48: Lake Bunyonyi.
Lake Bunyonyi is a small but attractive lake with steep sides and abundant birdlife. Ringed by mountains, the lake is best known for its dense Otter population and stunning scenery. We make use of this beautiful spot to relax the night before the final drive to the gorillas.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Days 49-51: Gorillas.
The mountain gorilla is extremely endangered and while exact numbers vary it is widely assumed that there are only around 650 left. Visiting the gorillas is a great way to support their future on earth as the money spent on permits is used for their protection. An extremely important part of the future conservation of the remaining gorillas rests in the community development work – as local communities change their attitudes towards wildlife and start to protect rather than poach, the future of the mountain gorilla is assured.
As permits granting permission to visit the gorillas are extremely limited we require flexibility in both the tour itinerary and where we actually visit them. The home of the mountain gorillas is completely at odds with man-made borders and so their range encompasses Uganda, Rwanda and the DRC (Democratic Republic of the Congo). Whenever possible we choose to make use of the National Park in Uganda, but this depends on the availability of permits. Should we not obtain permits to visit the mountain gorillas in Uganda then we will inform all passengers beforehand that the tour will travel to Rwanda or DRC. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Please note: Although there are 3-days allocated to Gorilla Trekking you will only spend one-day on the trek. The other days are there to provide a large enough window in which to obtain permits and to allow the entire group to trek if there are more than 6 of you on the tour.
Day 52: Queen Elizabeth National Park.
Many game species are to be found in this wetland park including the (elsewhere elusive) giant forest hog, and the legendary tree-climbing lions of the Ishasha Sector. Optional Activities: Kasinga Channel Sunset Cruise. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Days: 53-54 Jinja.
The morning is spent on further game viewing and this afternoon we travel to Jinja. Jinja is Uganda’s second largest city and is famous as the point where the Nile (officially the Victoria Nile) flows out of Lake Victoria and begins the 6695 kilometre journey to Egypt and the Mediterranean. Optional Activities: White Water Rafting. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 55: Kenya - Eldoret.
Returning to Kenya we visit Eldoret, the country’s 5th largest city. The Great Rift Valley is still the dominant geographical feature of this region and the altitude at Eldoret is 2100 metres above sea level. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Day 56: Nairobi.
Returning to Nairobi, the largest city in the East Africa region, there’s an optional dinner, where we can swap stories and exchange contact details. Optional Activities: Meal out in Nairobi. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch.
NB: The itinerary from Day 43 onwards, is flexible and can be changed without notice in order to accommodate the best possible viewing of the Gorillas. The Permit price to visit the Gorillas can also change without notice.
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