The Grand Southern Safari tour

The Grand Southern Safari tour

Tour Experience

Comprehensive 3 week tour starting in Cape Town and ending at Victoria Falls

Available

All year round on Tuesdays

Location

South Africa, Namibia and Botswana

The 20-day Cape Town to Victoria Falls route is a comprehensive tour where you cross from South Africa, Namibia, Botswana and wrapping up the tour in Zimbabwe. It is a simply grand safari!. This is an 'accommodated' tour, staying in hotels and lodges rather than camping.
As we leave Cape Town we go into a northern direction towards the Cederberg Mountain Region en route Namibia. As we cross the border, our first stop in Namibia is the Fish River Canyon where we hike along the rim of this large natural phenomenon. Next the Namib- Naukluft Park which is 50,000km2, and one of the largest parks in Africa. It is here in the Sossusvlei desert where you will find giant sand dunes and remarkable, ever changing landscapes.

In Swakopmund we stop to enjoy skydiving, sandboard, quad biking to name a few adventure sports. We then head to the Himba people’s homes, who are semi-nomadic bushmen. They are easily recognized by their distinctive red colored skin and hair. We then continue to the Etosha National Park for some abundant wildlife viewing in Southern Africa’s finest game reserve. We get to spot plenty of wildlife before continuing to Namibia’s capital of Windhoek. A short city tour makes way for crossing to Botswana. Our first visit here is Ghanzi to experience a cultural evening of tribal singing and dancing performed by the San community. The next three days is dedicated to exploring the Okavango Delta, which is the largest inland delta in the world. The lagoons, lakes, hidden channels and watermasses cover over 17,000km2 and we will be exploring as much of this in cruises on traditional Mokoro’s sailboats. We also visit the second largest wildlife reserve in Botswana. Here in the Chobe National Park we wrap up sightseeing and head over to the border where we find ourselves in Zimbabwe. This is our final destination and what better way to end a 20-day tour than to stand in the mist of the Victoria Falls – the crossroads of Africa.

Important Note: the itinerary below is written with an optional Activity Package included. This optional payment covers what we consider highly recommended activities on the tour. Separating these activities out is designed to help people with differing budgets. If required, the Activity Package should be pre-purchased prior to your arrival to guarantee availability and to help your guides plan ahead to help the smooth running of the tour. Please contact us for details and prices.

VIEW THE PHOTOS

INCLUDED

  • 19 night's accommodation
  • All transport in 25-seat expedition vehicle
  • All 'included highlights' as mentioned in the itinerary
  • 2 truck crew (driver/guide plus assistant/cook)
  • Local guides for sightseeing tours and activities as per the itinerary
  • Meals: 19 breakfasts, 18 lunches and 14 dinners

EXCLUDED

  • International Flights
  • Travel Insurance (compulsory)
  • Single room supplements (chargeable if a same-sex room share is not available)
  • Activity Package and optional activities (see itinerary)
  • Meals not indicated in the itinerary
  • Drinks, snacks, tips and other personal expenses (e.g. laundry)
  • Tips for tour leader
  • Any other items not mentioned above

PACKAGE DETAILS

Itinerary

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. We will be heading north towards our stop for the first night, passing through the Cederberg Region. Upon arrival at our overnight stop, we will enjoy a wine tasting, sampling wines from the region. Tonight we will be treated to a traditional South African meal, followed by a full tour briefing from your guides.
Route: Cape Town to Citrusdal ±270km
Activity Package: Wine tasting & traditional dinner
OVERNIGHT:
Citrusdal Country Lodge
MEALS:
Lunch
EXTRAS:
Arrival airport transfer in Cape Town, Extra day in Cape Town – pre-tour, Activity Package – The Grand Southern Safari (The optional Activity Package is available for an extra fee, please contact us for details and prices)

DAY 2: Namibia, Gariep (Orange) River

Today we travel through the Northern Cape and Namaqualand, stopping at the remote town of Springbok for any last requirements. After crossing the Namibian border we check into the lovely chalets overlooking the river that forms the border between South Africa and Namibia.
OVERNIGHT:
Felix Unite Cabanas OR Norotshama Lodge
MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 3: Gariep (Orange) River / Fish River Canyon

This morning there’s a chance to do an optional canoe trip down the Gariep River or to spend some time relaxing at the camp along the river. After lunch we travel north to the Fish River Canyon and take a scenic hike along the rim in order to gain some perspective as to just how large this natural phenomenon is. Later we return to Ai-Ais to check in to our accommodation and enjoy the hot springs.
Route: Orange/Gariep River to Fish River Canyon ±250km
Optional activity: Half-Day Canoe Adventure
Included highlight: Scenic walk along the rim of Fish River Canyon
OVERNIGHT:
Ai Ais Resort
MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
EXTRAS:
Options available while on tour

DAY 4: Namib-Naukluft National Park

The Namib-Naukluft NP is one of Namibia’s geographic gems and at 50,000km2, is one of the largest parks in Africa. There are massive sand dunes in the Sossusvlei desert area as well as the remarkable landscape. Our lodge is situated just outside the park.
Route: Ais Ais to Namib Naukluft ±620km
OVERNIGHT:
Hammerstein OR Taleni Desert/Quiver camp
MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 5: Sossusvlei Dunes - Namib-Naukluft National Park

We have a full day in the Namib-Naukluft National Park that starts with a walk up Dune 45 for an amazing view and photo opportunity. Later we will have the opportunity to be transported into Sossusvlei. In the afternoon there is a short walk into Sesriem Canyon.
Route: Betesda Lodge to Sesriem ±150km
Included Highlight: Walk into Sesriem Canyon, Hike up Dune 45
OVERNIGHT:
Hammerstein OR Taleni Desert/Quiver camp
MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 6: Swakopmund

After a brief photo stop while crossing the Tropic of Capricorn, we will be joined by 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. From there, we will travel onto Namibia’s Atlantic coast and the adventure capital, Swakopmund, we stop at the Walvis Bay lagoon en-route, where there are 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.
Route: Betesda Lodge to Swakopmund ±380km
Activity Package: Guided desert walk with local expert
Optional activities: Dinner Out
OVERNIGHT:
Stay@Swakop OR Amampur
MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch
EXTRAS:
Options available while on tour

DAY 7: Swakopmund

Today is your chance to experience the adrenalin filled atmosphere that Swakopmund offers. Taking a walk around Swakopmund’s shops and having a leisurely lunch is also a great way to spend your day if you are not participating in the many activities available on offer here.
Route: Betesda Lodge to Swakopmund ±380km
Optional activities: Dolphin Cruise 4/5 hours, Sky Diving, Sandboarding, Quad Biking (2 hours), Dinner Out Swakopmund
OVERNIGHT:
Stay@Swakop OR Amampuri
MEALS:
Breakfast
EXTRAS:
Options available while on tour

DAY 8: Swakopmund to Khorixas

Today we head inland towards Khorixas, stopping en-route at Spitzkoppe, where we will enjoy some time exploring the enormous granite monoliths with our guide. In the afternoon we will visit the Petrified Forest (might be done the following morning).
Route ±320km
Included highlights: Visit the Petrified Forest
OVERNIGHT:
Igowati OR Khorixas Lodge
MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 9: Kamanjab, Himba Tribe

We visit a Himba community close to Kamanjab where you will have an opportunity to interact with the people who live there. This is a working village and is only a representation of a larger group of nomadic pastoralists. The semi-nomadic Himba people are extremely susceptible to Western influence and have lost a large portion of their land to farmers, engineers, miners and many were displaced during the wars that raged in Angola. The dwindling number of pastoralists that still exist in their natural environment are protected as far as possible by creating a zone or an tribe where tourists who would like to get a better understanding of the way of the Himba, their lifestyle and their traditions, can do so without interfering with those still living in their natural environment. Visiting the Himba tribe can be a controversial topic that gets discussed at the camp fire, however not so much if the reason for visiting this particular tribe is understood beforehand. The income that this specific tribe generates from the visits goes towards the education of orphaned Himba children and assists the tribe in giving them a chance to learn about their own culture and heritage. There is a market at the end of your visit, this is a way for the women to establish a small income, used for their own private expenses, and it is up to you whether you like to purchase anything or not.
Route: Spitzkoppe to Outjo ±340KM
Activity Package: Himba Tribe Visit
OVERNIGHT:
Etotongwe
MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
EXTRAS:
Activity package

DAY 10: Etosha National Park

As we leave the city behind us, we travel into barren area in the North of Namibia. On the way we will make a short stop at a popular craft market where you can purchase handmade gifts to take home. We’ll later enter Etosha National Park and game drive to our accommodation for the night.
Route: Outjo to Etosha National Park ±170km
Included highlight: Craft Market stop, Entrance to Etosha NP, Afternoon game drive in the truck
OVERNIGHT:
Okakuejo OR Halali OR Namutoni OR Toshari
MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 11: Etosha National Park

Etosha is known for some of the most unique and best game viewing experiences in Africa. The sparse grasslands allow great opportunities to see animals normally hidden by dense vegetation. You may even see some of the amazing animals crossing the road in front of your truck!
Included Highlight: Full day game drive in the truck
OVERNIGHT:
Okaukuejo OR Halali OR Namutoni OR Mokuti Etosha Lodge
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 drive through Windhoek in our truck. Joe’s Beer House is an exciting dining experience for our optional dinner out.
Route: Etosha National Park to Windhoek ±450km
Included highlight: Drive through Windhoek with the truck
Optional activity: Dinner out – Windhoek, Bushman Walk (May take place on the previous day)
OVERNIGHT:
Arebbusch Travel Lodge
MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch
EXTRAS:
Options available while on tour

DAY 13: Botswana, Ghanzi

After an early start, we say goodbye to Namibia and cross the Botswana border. Later we arrive at our lodge in Ghanzi and this evening we experience some traditional tribal dancing from the local San community.
Route: Windhoek to Ghanzi ±520km
Included highlight: Bushman Tribal dance in evening
OVERNIGHT:
Ghanzi Trail Blazers
MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 14: Maun, Okavango Delta

Today we journey to the outback town of Maun. The afternoon is spent relaxing and preparing for our adventure into the Okavango Delta. Please note: If you have not purchased the Activity Package you will remain behind at the accommodation in Maun during the Delta Excursion for the next two following days.
Route: Ghanzi to Maun ±350 km
Optional activities: Bushman walk
OVERNIGHT:
Sitatunga or Island Safari Lodge
MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 15: Okavango Delta

After breakfast, we board our plane, flying over the winding channels of the Delta. A drive to camp sees us arrive at our home for the next two nights. Upon arrival we settle in and prepare for our afternoon activity on the waterways of the Delta. Tonight we spend the evening around the campfire accompanied by the many sounds of the bush.
Luggage Restriction: 10kg luggage per person, no bottled water allowed on flight The airline requires the individual weight of all guests and their luggage prior to check-in as they have recently implemented new safety regulations for the flight into and out of the Okavango Delta. Please take no offense to this as it is done for guests safety only
Activity Package Excursion
OVERNIGHT:
Mopiri Camp
MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
EXTRAS:
Activity package

DAY 16: Okavango Delta

An early start sees us head off on the crystal clear waters of the Okavango. Water lily beds and palm islands make for the most scenic of experiences. We stop at an island for a nature walk where we have the possibility of seeing wildlife. After breakfast, we return to camp to relax before heading out our sunset activity.
Activity Package Excursion
Optional activity: Tips for Polers
OVERNIGHT:
Mopiri Camp
MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
EXTRAS:
Activity package, Options available while on tour

DAY 17: Nata

A morning game drive ends with our arrival at the airstrip where we bid farewell to the Delta. A scenic flight gives us our last view of this breathtaking water wonderland and the animals that inhabit it. We meet up with our truck in Maun and head to Nata.
Route: Maun to Nata ±230km
OVERNIGHT:
Nata Lodge or Pelican Lodge
MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
EXTRAS:
Activity package

DAY 18: Chobe National Park

After continuing north to Kasane, we enjoy the included sunset river cruise on the Chobe River (in the National Park) where animals such as hippos, buffalo and elephants are plentiful.
Route: Nata to Kasane ±315km
Activity Package boat cruise, Chobe National Park Game Drive
Optional activities: 3-hour photographic Boat Safari
OVERNIGHT:
Thebe River Lodge
MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
EXTRAS:
Activity package, Options available while on tour

DAY 19: Zimbabwe, Victoria Falls

On arrival in Victoria Falls 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 as it drops over 100m into the gorge below.
Route: Kasane to Vic Falls ±100km
Activity Package: Victoria Falls National Park Entry Fee
Optional activities: Dinner out in Victoria Falls
OVERNIGHT:
A’Zambezi
MEALS:
Breakfast, Lunch
EXTRAS:
Activity package, Options available while on tour

DAY 20: Victoria Falls

Although your tour officially ends after breakfast, most people will spend the day doing some safaris, white water rafting, taking a helicopter ride over the falls or relaxing after viewing the waterfall. Vic Falls offers many exciting activities so we recommend you add a post-tour night here.
Note: It is possible to book our 2 day Journey to Johannesburg, either Camping or Accommodated straight after this tour, as this is one of the cheapest ways to get from Victoria Falls to Johannesburg. Please contact us for more information. Our Big 5 Encounters tour from Johannesburg then also fits well after this trip, providing some great safaris in Kruger National Park.
Optional activities: Zambezi Sunset Cruise, Bungee Jump – Solo, Helicopter Flights, White Water Rafting
OVERNIGHT:
N/A
MEALS:
Breakfast
EXTRAS:
Options available while on tour, Extra day in Victoria Falls – post-tour, Departure airport transfer in Victoria Falls

DURATION

20 Days

Price

A$3460

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