An epic overland journey from Kenya to Cape Town covering scenic game parks, the worlds largest inland delta, tropical Zanzibar Island, the third largest lake in Africa, the worlds oldest desert and the Smoke That Thunders over the dramatic Victoria Falls. See Africas best highlights on this comprehensive tour.
This tour is also available in reverse starting from Cape Town, ending in Nairobi
Day 1. Nairobi to Maasai Mara National ReserveDeparting the city early, we make our way across the Great Rift Valley to the Maasai Mara National Reserve - enjoying the vast vistas en-route. We travel in small specialized safari vehicles that enable us to have a more intimate view of wildlife.
Day 2. Maasai Mara National Reserve Highlights. Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya.The sweeping plains, distant horizons, low slung acacia trees, and plentiful wildlife ensure a deeply evocative few days. The ‘Mara’ is crossed every year between July and October by great herds of wildebeest, zebra and other grazing animals in their migration from the adjoining Serengeti plains to the south (in Tanzania), however game viewing is spectacular year-round.
Day 3. Maasai Mara to Nairobi Highlights. Great Rift Valley.Heading back through the Maasai town of Narok, we make our way back up the Great Rift Valley and stop off at the viewpoint to see how the continent has shifted in this area.
Day 4. Nairobi to Arusha, Tanzania Highlights. Meserani Snake Park, Tanzania.We leave lovely Kenya and cross the border to Tanzania today, where we pass through the safari capital Arusha. Being the half-way mark of the famed old Cape to Cairo trade route, Arusha is now most famed as the place to start your Serengeti Safari from, despite a healthy and growing coffee industry, with numerous coffee plantations in the area. Maybe stop off for a cuppa at a local cafe and see what you think?
Day 5. Arusha to Serengeti National Park Highlights. Serengeti National Park, Tanzania.We gather our gear and pile into specialized and purpose-built safari vehicles, with resident guides and head out on the road via Karatu to the Serengeti.
Day 6. Serengeti National Park to Ngorongoro Crater Highlights. Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania.Waking early we head out in search of the night's wildlife activity before heading back to camp to pack up, and continue on over the plains and on to the Ngorongoro Crater.
Day 7. Ngorongoro Crater to Arusha Highlights. Maasai Village Walk, Arusha, Tanzania.This morning it's all about game viewing - heading down the steep crater walls you'll see the herds from a distance and know where to head on reaching it's base.
Day 8. Arusha to Bagamoyo Highlights. Bagamoyo, Tanzania.Today our journey takes us along the base of the magnificent Mount Kilimajaro. At 5895m high, the summit is often shrouded in cloud in the early morning, so we hope to catch a glimpse of the snow-capped peak as we travel on through the day.
Day 9. Bagamoyo to Dar es Salaam Highlights. Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.We continue along the coast to the bustling city of Dar es Salaam. As we near the city, there's much to see with the increase in traffic, roadside businesses and housing.
Day 11-12. Zanzibar Highlights. Zanzibar, Northern Beaches, Tanzania.Time on Zanzibar is spent at leisure enjoying the many sights and experiences on offer. Most groups will spend the first night in Stone Town and then head up to the northern beaches for the remainder of their stay.
Day 13. Zanzibar to Dar es SalaamAfter picking up some last minute supplies and saying our farewells to the white-sand beaches, we head back via the ferry to the mainland and our truck waiting for us in Dar es Salaam.
Day 14. Dar es Salaam to Mikumi Highlights. Mikumi National Park, Tanzania.Making our way through the bustling city we drive west and we make our way through the Tanzanian countryside.
Day 15. Mikumi to IringaDriving up into the Tanzanian highlands we pass through the aptly named Baobab Valley before making our way up onto the higher plateau.
Day 16. Iringa to Chitimba Beach, Malawi Highlights. Lake Malawi, Malawi.Waking early, we head further west to the mining town of Mbeya before taking a 'left' on our way to Malawi.
Day 17. Chitimba BeachToday is free to relax, enjoy browsing the local woodworkers market, visit the nearby village or take a hike up the nearby mountains to the Livingstonia Mission.
Day 18. Chitimba to Kande BeachDiscovering more of the Malawian countryside, today we travel via the town of Mzuzu - a main trading and shopping post for the north. After stocking up on supplies and surveying the local markets, we continue on via the forests of rubber plantations - back to the lakeside and our camp at Kande Beach.
Day 19. Kande Beach Highlights. Kande Beach Activities, Malawi.Spend the day chilling on the beach, take a dive to see the diversity of the freshwater Cichlids in the lake, go horseback riding, or simply relax with a good book - today is all yours to fill doing whatever takes your fancy.
Day 20. Kande Beach to Chipata, ZambiaBidding our farewells to the blue waters of the lake, we travel via the capital, Lillongwe and stopping off for supplies, before making our way to the border with Zambia.
Day 21. Chipata to Lusaka Highlights. Lusaka, Zambia.Journeying through Zambia and along the Great East road, our drive takes us across the bridge at the Luangwa River. We travel through many smaller towns, villages and farmland - getting a glimpse of how Zambians live & work.
Day 22. Lusaka to LivingstoneWinding our way through southern Zambia, we arrive to Livingstone - a stone's throw from the border to Zimbabwe and our base for the next few nights.
Day 23-25. Livingstone Highlights. Livingstone Activities, Zambia.The next days are spent at leisure - taking advantage of the many activities on offer in and around Livingstone.
Day 26. Livingstone to Kasane, Botswana Highlights. Chobe Fish Eagle Cruise, Botswana.Jumping back on the truck, we drive to the border of Botswana and cross via the quirky Kazangula ferry. From here it's only a short drive to our camp at Kasane on the outskirts of the Chobe National Park.
Day 28. Nata to Maun Highlights. Maun, Botswana.We cross the north-south migration route between the Makgadikgadi Pans and the southern Nxai Pans en-route to the gateway to the Okavango Delta at Maun.
Day 29. Maun to Okavango Delta Highlights. Okavango Delta, Botswana.Grabbing our gear, we board the 4x4 transfer and head off into the wilderness this morning.
Day 30. Okavango Delta to MaunWaking with the sun, we head out once more to see what the bush veld holds in store this morning. The Delta area is an open wilderness with free roaming wildlife.
Day 31. Maun to Ghanzi Highlights. Kalahari Bushman Walk, Botswana.Today we head west to the northern Kalahari town of Ghanzi where we have the opportunity to meet with and learn about the indigenous Kalahari San people.
Day 32. Ghanzi to Windhoek, Namibia Highlights. Windhoek, Namibia.From Ghanzi we continue to the border and cross over into the second-last country on our tour - Namibia.
Day 33. Windhoek to Etosha National Park Highlights. Etosha National Park, Namibia.Starting early, we make our way through northern Namibian towns and villages, on to the famed Etosha National Park. Upon entering the park, we game drive our way through and on to the fenced-camp within.
Day 34. Etosha National ParkToday is a dedicated game viewing day and we head out early to catch a glimpse of any predation action from the night before.
Day 35. Etosha National Park to Spitzkoppe Highlights. Spitzkoppe, Namibia.Leaving the 'ghosts of Etosha' behind, we make our way south and on to the Spitzkoppe area - an unusual looking mountain feature set in the plains of central Namibia. A sacred place to the San tribes of old, there are a number of rock-art sites depicting the histories and journeys made by these ancient people thousands of years ago.
Day 36. Spitzkoppe to Swakopmund Highlights. Swakopmund, Namibia.Leaving the sacred mountains, we head to the Atlantic coast and the seaside town of Swakopmund. Here you'll have the opportunity to go out and explore the surrounding desert landscapes on a variety of excursions.
Day 37. Swakopmund Highlights. Swakopmund, Namibia.Today is free to enjoy adventure activities like quad biking, sand-boarding down enormous dunes, tandem-skydiving over the desert for a birds-eye view for the adrenaline junkies.
Day 38. Swakopmund to Sossus On Foot camp, Khomas Region Highlights. The Tropic of Capricorn.Crossing the dune-belt back inland, we journey up the escarpment and through the Kuiseb Canyon rock formations, to our desert camp in the Khomas Region.
Day 40. Sesriem Area to Fish River Canyon Highlights. Fish River Canyon, Namibia.Travelling further south through the arid desert, we make our way to the Fish River Canyon - one of the largest canyons in the world.
Day 41. Fish River Canyon to Orange River, South Africa Highlights. Orange (Gariep) River, Namibia.Driving further on through the Mars-like landscapes, we make our way to the Orange River and our camp on the banks of the river where we'll have the opportunity to enjoy an optional canoe trip this afternoon to further explore the diverse landscapes and unusual scenery of the Richter's veld.
Day 42. Orange River to Cederberg Area Highlights. Cederberg, South Africa.We cross the border to South Africa and traverse the arid northern Cape on our way to the Cederberg area where our last night 'on the road' is spent.
Day 43. Cederberg Area to Cape Town Highlights. Cape Town, South Africa.Our final journey takes us into the Western Cape and to Cape Town, South Africa's mother city - where this magical journey ends.
Conveniently located on Nairobi's Harry Thuku Road and set in manicured gardens, this hotel offers a peaceful oasis in the centre of town. Walking distance to shops and craft markets. Rooms – single, twin, double en suite rooms with balcony and satellite TV. Facilities – restaurant, bar, swimming pool, internet, laundry. Transfers are available from the Airport by pre-arrangement
* Suggested pre and post tour accommodation can be booked together with your tour. Please enquire at the time of booking.
Situated at the foot of Table Mountain and in walking distances to the city centre, Ashanti Lodge Backpackers in Gardens is your gateway to Cape Town. This gorgeous Victorian Mansion offers backpacker dormitories to single, double and twin rooms with shared bathroom facilities. Chill next to the stunning pool, join the party in the legendary Kumasi Café/Bar with its cool cocktails, tasty food and fabulous mountain views or go explore the city's highlights close by.
* Suggested pre and post tour accommodation can be booked together with your tour. Please enquire at the time of booking.
PRE TOUR ACCOMMODATION:
This tour departs Nairobi early on day 1; we strongly recommend therefore that you plan to arrive the day before departure to overcome any jet-lag and acclimatise to Africa. We would be happy to book pre-tour accommodation for you – please call or email us (or speak to your agent) with your arrival details and accommodation requirements. However please book early to avoid disappointment and the risk of having to find more expensive (or less convenient) lodgings.
If time allows, we also suggest planning a night or two extra (after your tour) to make the most of Cape Town and the surrounding area.
ACTIVITIES & EXCURSIONS:
These are optional activities that are booked during your holiday and paid directly to the provider while on tour. These options offer a variety of experiences and allow you the freedom to decide what activities you would like to do.
We use 2-person dome tents with fly sheets, sewn-in groundsheets, zip-up insect screens and foam mattresses. We mainly use campsites, which usually have reasonable wash and shower facilities, electricity points and sometimes even a small shop, bar or swimming pool. In Maasai Mara we use multi shared tented camp with en-suite facilities. In the Okavango Delta we use twin share pre-erected tents with basic en-suite facilities. In the Serengeti & Ngorongoro Crater there are basic facilities. On Zanzibar we use basic tourist class local hotels. In Swakopmund we use multi shared accommodation (dorm).
24-seater, self-contained, custom-built safari truck with on-board tables, plug sockets, freezer, water tank, library, i-pod jack, safety features and 70-litre individual lockers, mokoro (dugout canoe), river boat, 4x4 safari vehicle and fast ferry.
GAME PARK VISITS:
In order to maximise the quality of game driving and to comply with local authority rulings, some of our National Park visits and game viewing is carried out using services provided by local African ground handlers. As well as enhancing our experience using local guides and smaller vehicles it also allows us to contribute at a ‘grassroots’ level to local economies from which local people benefit.
This is a participation tour and your help will be needed in assisting with the various day to day duties, such as shopping, cooking and keeping the truck tidy (usually on a rota basis). But don’t worry it’s not all hard work and it’s a great way to meet the local people and get to know your fellow travellers. Your contribution benefits the success of the tour - most people find the greater their involvement, the greater their enjoyment of the whole trip.
42 Breakfasts, 33 Lunches, 32 Dinners
34 days camping in 2-person dome tents, 3 nights tented camp with en suite (Delta and Maasai Mara), 3 nights tourist class hotel, 2 nights dorm
Every Overland tour has an Adventure Pass which is paid to your tour leader in Africa at the beginning of the tour (or pre-paid by arrangement prior to your tour). This is separate and in addition to the Tour Price, and covers selected park entries, activities and excursions along the way where payment goes directly to the supplier to ensure local suppliers benefit directly from the income.
* This pass is a compulsory add-on for this tour.