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Tours

Southern Africa Including Victoria Falls

Tour departs: 08 May 2021
Tour length: 23 Days

We visit some of the most famous of the Game Reserves and National Parks in Africa, boasting an astonishing amount of game. Not only the game, but the areas we visit are ravishingly beautiful and also offer long undisturbed views and dramatic panoramas.

Overview

Tour Departs – 08 May 2021.

Tour Length – 23 Days

South Africa is a remarkable country and a wonderful holiday destination. It is a land of diversity with a varied and rich history, magnificent natural beauty, abundant wildlife and a unique spirit and energy that exudes from a true melting pot of cultures – it is without doubt a “Rainbow Nation”. South Africa is truly a country for all seasons with an extremely pleasant climate and daily sunshine hours among the highest in the world.

Zambia is our gateway to the magnificent Victoria Falls, one of the Seven Wonders of the World and the largest waterfall in the world, fed by the Zambezi River. Close by is Botswana and Chobe National Park, which offers one of the largest concentration of wildlife in Africa. The tour is full of highlights, with just so much to see and do!

Tour Highlights
  • Johannesburg, our gateway into South Africa and its largest city
  • Zambia – Victoria Falls, a natural wonder of the world, sunset Zambezi River cruise
  • Botswana – Chobe National Park, a safari experience of a lifetime
  • Kruger National Park, a wildlife experience that ranks with the best in Africa home to “The Big Five” – Elephant, Rhino, Lion, Leopard and Buffalo
  • Eswatini and Zululand where we take a step back into history to experience a taste of the Zulu customs
  • Durban, the holidaymakers paradise on the Indian Ocean with its sub-tropical climate and carnival atmosphere
  • The “Garden Route” tour between Port Elizabeth and Cape Town
  • Oudtshoorn, centre for the Ostrich farming industry
  • Cape Town, the “Mother City” of South Africa set against the magical backdrop of Table Mountain
  • Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens – the gardens are a must when visiting Capetown
  • Cape Winelands Tour – vineyards, green valleys, Cape Dutch homesteads, beautifully preserved historic buildings, oak tree-lined avenues
  • Cape Point Tour – the Atlantic Seaboard – Cape of Good Hope, rugged coastlines, beautiful gardens, quaint villages

Itinerary

Saturday 9 May
New Zealand – Sydney – Johannesburg
An early morning departure for Sydney today. On arrival in Sydney, we transfer to our flight to Johannesburg, arriving late afternoon. After clearing Customs and Immigration, we are met and transferred to our hotel, located in the exclusive Sandton area, for a two night stay. The remainder of the day is at leisure to rest up after the journey from home.

Sunday 10 May
Johannesburg (B,L)
Enjoy a day tour of Johannesburg city and the South-Western Townships, otherwise known as Soweto. On this day tour, we are treated to various sights and sounds of Soweto including Nelson Mandela House, the Apartheid Museum, as well as enjoying lunch at local restaurant.

Monday 11 May
Johannesburg – Livingstone (Zambia) (B,D)
After breakfast, we are transferred by coach back to the airport in time to join the short flight to Livingstone (Zambia), Victoria Falls. We’re met on arrival and transferred to our hotel where we enjoy a 2-night stay.

Tuesday 12 May
Victoria Falls (B)
This morning, we enjoy a guided tour of Victoria Falls. Our Zambian guide enlightens us on the facts and history, as we are guided around the falls. It is a truly awe-inspiring experience – we are able to view the largest falling sheet of water in the world – the sight, the sound, the smell, the humbling feeling that here indeed is Nature’s supreme masterpiece. For those that wish, there is time for a helicopter flight over the falls at the conclusion of our guided tour (additional cost). In the afternoon, we enjoy a sundowner cruise on the great Zambezi River.

Wednesday 13 May
Livingstone – Victoria Falls – Chobe National Park Botswana (B,L,D)
This morning we travel by road (100kms) to Botswana’s Chobe National Park, home to some of the largest herds of elephant in Africa, large numbers of crocodiles, hippos, as well as a large array of birdlife. After lunch at our lodge, we enjoy a game-viewing cruise on the Chobe River. This trip will definitely allow you to feel the pulse of Africa. This afternoon we arrive at Cresta Mowana Resort, situated on the banks of the mighty Chobe River, where we will stay for two nights.

Thursday 14 May
Chobe National Park Botswana (B,L,D)
We rise early this morning to take part in another game drive – an excellent opportunity to start ticking off the Big 5! We’ll return to the hotel for lunch and relaxation before heading out again this afternoon to enjoy a river cruise.

Friday 15 May
Livingstone, Botswana – Johannesburg (B,D)
An early wake-up call today as we have breakfast at the hotel, before travelling back across the border to Livingstone Airport in time for the short flight to Johannesburg. On arrival, we return to our Sandton hotel for an overnight stay.

Saturday 16 May
Johannesburg – Hazyview (B,D)
This morning, we depart Sandton and travel by coach to the Mpumalanga Province. This is approximately a 6-hour drive through, with stops along the way, through both interesting and scenic countryside. Highlights include a short visit to the Blyde River Canyon, Three Rondawels, Bourke’s Luck Potholes, God’s Window and waterfalls. We arrive at our overnight accommodation located on the banks of the Sabie River.

Sunday 17 May
Hazyview – Kruger National Park (B,L,D)
Today we awake and depart our hotel early to enjoy a full day game drive within Kruger National Park. Lunch is served out on the deck (weather permitting). Later this evening, return to our overnight accommodation located just 100m from the Paul Kruger Gate of the National Park. We enjoy dinner together at the lodge.

Monday 18 May
Kruger National Park – Eswatini (B,D)
We again enjoy game viewing in open top vehicles early this morning before we leave the reserve and continue to Eswatini, previously Swaziland, with sightseeing en-route. We also visit the Ngwenya Glass Factory (time permitting). Our overnight stay is in the heart of Eswatini’s most beautiful valley.

Tuesday 19 May
Eswatini – Zululand (B,D)
After breakfast, we depart our hotel with time to enjoy the Swazi market before crossing the border back into South Africa. We enjoy the beauty and splendour of Hluhluwe National Park before arriving at our hotel at Shakaland for an overnight stay. Here, we experience one of South Africa’s most unique tourist attractions tucked away between aloes and mimosa trees overlooking Umhlatuze Lake and originally created for the set of the film “Shaka Zulu”. The complex is now a living museum and cultural centre where Zulu folk pursue the customs and traditions of their forebearers. Take a step back into the history of the Zulu people at the Great Kraal of King Shaka and experience the mystery and magic that is Africa.

Wednesday 20 May
Zululand – Durban (B,D)
Today, we continue our journey to the coastal resort city of Durban and enjoy an afternoon tour of this seaside city. Drive along Marine Parade; see the rickshaw pullers and the harbour. We pass the Sugar Terminal, University of Natal and the Botanical Gardens.There will be the opportunity to spend some time bargaining at the colourful Indian Market. We have a two night stay in Durban providing sweeping Indian Ocean views along Durbans sun-kissed beachfront.

Thursday 21 May
Durban (B)
Today is left entirely free to relax and
enjoy this wonderful city.

Friday 22 May
Durban – Port Elizabeth – Knysna (B,D)
After very early start today as we transfer by coach from our hotel to Durban airport for the short flight to Port Elizabeth. On arrival, we join our coach and enter the Garden Route via the Tsitsikama Forest – dense indigenous forest renowned for a large number of giant yellowwood and stinkwood trees, forest ferns, clear streams, magnificent birds and fascinating walks. We visit the Tsitsikama National Park, comprising a glorious 10km stretch of wild and rocky coastline characterised by massive cliffs, narrow isolated beaches and shady indigenous forest along the river valleys. We travel via Plettenberg Bay, an up market resort with 3 beaches. We continue to the well-known seaside resort of Knysna established by George Rex, reputedly the illegitimate son of George III. The town lies on the Knysna lagoon, the mouth of which is guarded by two promontories known as The Heads. Our Knysna accommodation can be found on the banks of the Knysna lagoon and offers views of thousands of hectares of beautiful indigenous forest. We enjoy a 2-night stay in Knysna. Dinner tonight is at local restaurant.

Saturday 23 May
Knysna (B,L)
Knsyna is one of the southern Cape’s most popular holiday destinations, located between lush forests and the sheltered waters of the lagoon. This morning, after a leisurely breakfast, we are taken on a tour of the Featherbed Nature Reserve including lunch. We start with a 25 minute ferry ride during which a local guide shares fascinating tales about the lagoon, the shipping industry and oyster cultivation. On arrival at the reserve, we join a unimog-drawn trailer and drive up to the top of the Reserve. While stopping at a scenic lookout point, our specialist guides share with us some fascinating tales about Knysna and the surrounding area while we enjoy the panoramic views. The remainder of the day is at leisure.

Sunday 24 May
Knysna – Oudtshoorn (B,D)
This morning, we leave Knysna and travel to Oudtshoorn via Mossel Bay. Mossel Bay is the site of the first landfall made by the Portuguese explorer Bartholomeu Dias in 1488 and today is a popular holiday resort. Continue on to Oudtshoorn, known as the Feather Capital. We visit the Cango Caves for a guided tour. Regarded as one of South Africa’s foremost natural wonders, the fascinating calcite caves are a wonderland of stalactites and stalagmites. We continue to the nearby Cango Wildlife Ranch for a guided tour. We stay overnight at Oudtshoorn.

Monday 25 May
Oudtshoorn – Cape Town (B)
After breakfast, we visit the nearby Ostrich farm for a guided tour before travelling along the R62 inland road to Cape Town, where we stay for 4 nights.

Tuesday 26 May
Cape Town (B)
Our tour today sees us first at the Table Mountain lower cable station. Weather permitting we board the cable car for a ride to the top of the mountain. Table Mountain is probably the most famous landmark in Cape Town and offers spectacular views that stretch from Table Bay to False Bay and around the mountain to Hout Bay. On a clear day one can see right across the Cape Flats to the Hottentots Holland Mountain range. It also offers a restaurant from where you can enjoy the view. Return to central Cape Town for a tour of the mother city. Further highlights include the South African Museum, a window on the world of natural history, and the Castle of Good Hope built by the Dutch in 1666 and the oldest surviving building in South Africa. We also see the Malay Quarter which is a living cultural museum and home to the oldest mosque in the Southern Hemisphere.The remainder of the afternoon is at leisure. For those that wish, there is the option to visit Robben Island for a guided tour.

Wednesday 27 May
Cape Town – Cape Point Tour (B,L)
This morning, our full day tour commences as we make our way down to Cape Point, via rugged coastlines, beautiful gardens and quaint villages. The Atlantic seaboard stretches along Sea Point, Bantry Bay, Clifton and Camps Bay where some of Cape Town’s best beaches are found. The road follows the coastline between the mountains and the Atlantic ocean. Continuing along the coast, we enter the Cape of Good Hope section of the Table Mountain National Park and visit the Nature Reserve with its natural beauty and abundance of indigenous flora and fauna. We then go to Cape Point, the extreme tip of the Cape Peninsula where you may take a funicular trip to the lighthouse look-out point at the top of the cliffs. Lunch is enjoyed at Simonstown. On the journey back to the hotel we visit Boulders Beach, famous for its African penguins.

Thursday 28 May
Cape Town – Cape Winelands Tour (B,D)
Full day tour of Cape Winelands. Visit the city of Paarl, the largest town in the district, with many well maintained mansions and pretty Cape Dutch cottages. Stellenbosch, the second oldest town in South Africa, is famous for its university, tree lined streets and historical architecture and is at the centre of the wealthy wine-growing area. Franschoek is the gourmet capital surrounded by majestic mountains culminating in an awe-inspiring pass. Here, we visit the Huguenot Monument and Museum documenting their history. We finish the tour with dinner at a local wine estate.

Friday 29 May
Cape Town – Johannesburg (B,D)
Sadly, it is time to farewell Cape Town this morning as we are transferred by coach to the airport in time to join our flight to Johannesburg. On arrival, we are met and transferred to our hotel for an overnight stay. We enjoy a final dinner together this evening.

Saturday 30 May
Pretoria Tour Johannesburg – Sydney (B,L)
Today is our final day in South Africa and we travel to Pretoria to enjoy a half day tour of the nation’s administrative capital. The city of Pretoria has many historical sights including the State Theatre Arts Complex, The Union Buildings housing the administrative seat of government and venue for Nelson Mandela’s inauguration, Melrose House where the peace treaty marking the end of the Boer War was signed, Kruger House Museum, once the modest well maintained official residence of Paul Kruger, a former president of the South African Republic, and the Voortrekker Monument which dominates the Pretoria skyline and commemorates the Voortrekkers (Pioneers) who left the Eastern Cape in order to escape British rule. Lunch is included today and later this afternoon we return to Johannesburg Airport in time to join our overnight flight to Sydney.

Sunday 31 May
Sydney – New Zealand
Our flight arrives Sydney early afternoon with time to connect with a late afternoon flight to Auckland.

Map

 

 

“Seeing all the wild life was great. Especially on the evening cruises and in the safari vehicles. Having giraffes, zebras, and impalas in hotel grounds at Victoria Falls was a treat.

A very good tour company for Senior couples and also people travelling on their own. We have now done 5 tours and enjoyed every one of them.”
– Virginia and Trevor Cochran

“Sunset on Chobe River was a sight never to be forgotten.”
– Philippa Hooper

“I loved it all!!  A great bunch of folks to travel with and at the right time of year.  A totally enjoyable travel and companionable experience, well organised.”
– SB

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By Phone: 0800 500 518 | By Email: tours@mahertours.co.nz