An overland safari which will take you through the diverse landscapes of southern Africa through the barren desert to the cold Atlantic and warm Indian ocean coastlines, to thriving game parks, wild savannah, the roaring Victoria Falls . This trip will leave you wanting more!
Please note: This tour ends in Pretoria from 2019 – please contact Acacia for end hotel details.
Day 1. Cape Town to Cederberg Highlights. Cederberg, South Africa.Today starts with a visit to the Cape Flats, one of Cape Town intriguing townships where will interact with the locals at one of the community projects before having a traditional lunch. After this great introduction to South Africa’s history we head north through the western Cape ending at our camp site overlooking the cederberg mountains.
Day 2. Cederberg to the Orange River Highlights. Orange (Gariep) River, Namibia.Leaving the Cedererg region, we head north via Namaqualand famous for the flowers that bloom between August and September to the Gariep (Orange) River. Our accommodation is located on the Namibia's side of the river. Relax, swim or enjoy a nice walk in the Richtersveld's scenic rocky mountains and rugged kloofs.
Day 3. Orange River to Fish River Canyon Highlights. Fish River Canyon, Namibia.Rising early, today we have the opportunity to partake in an option canoe safari, swim or simply relax and soak in this beautiful area. After a relaxing morning, we make our way to one of Africa's natural wonders, Fish River Canyon. At 161 km long, over 500 m deep, this impressive dry canyon is the second largest canyon in the word.
Day 4. Fish River Canyon to Sesriem Area Highlights. Namib Naukluft Park, Namibia.After a night spent near the canyon we are again heading north to Sesriem area, the gateway to Naukluft National Park. Famous for the world’s oldest desert and highest sands dunes, the Namib-Naukluft National Park contains part of the Namib Desert and the Naukluft mountains.
Day 7. Swakopmund Highlights. Swakopmund, Namibia.A free day to explore Swakopmund. Why not try the sandboarding, quad biking, deep sea fishing, sky diving or a township tour to explore the unique cultural side of this quaint seaside town.
Day 8 . Swakopmund to Spitzkoppe Highlights. Spitzkoppe, Namibia.Today we are heading inland to the Damaraland region to explore Spitzkoppe. There are ancient bushman paintings still visible on the rock formations and our campsite is just under giant boulder like rock formations that turn an incredible shades of red at both sunrise and sunset.
Day 9. Spitzkoppe to Etosha National ParkToday we turn north and make our way to Etosha National Park where we camp inside the park for the next two nights. Etosha is vast reserve surrounding a central salt pan which is seasonally full of water but special managed waterholes sustain some 114 mammals and 340 bird species. The floodlit waterhole, which is where we make camp, offers a unique game viewing experience as a range of night visitors including elephants, giraffe, zebra, lion and hyena all come to drink.
Day 10. Etosha National Park Highlights. Etosha National Park, Namibia.We rise early to enjoy a full day game driving. We take in the salt pan which can be seen from space - in search of elephants, rhinos, zebra, giraffes and the many grazing animals. Back at camp we spend one more night around the flood lit waterhole, getting a great view of these animals up close and personal.
Day 11. Etosha National Park to Windhoek Highlights. Windhoek, Namibia.Today we are making our way to the capitol of Namibia, Windhoek. An extremely small capital by global standards and characterized by the German influence from early colonial history. Make sure to try the local restaurants famous for its local beers and braai (BBQ.)
Day 12. Windhoek to Ghanzi, Botswana Highlights. Kalahari Bushman Walk, Botswana.Today we are crossing the border from Namibia to Botswana. After border formalities we head to the town of Ghanzi where we meet the San Bushman and have a guided bush walk and gain insight into these ancient people’s culture and way of life.
Day 13. Ghanzi to Maun Highlights. Maun, Botswana.Maun is known as the gateway to the Okavango Delta. Still considered a village, Maun is the fifth largest town in Botswana and a thriving tourist spot. We arrive at camp mid afternoon, set up and prepare for our journey into the Okavango Delta.
Day 14. Maun to Okavango Delta Highlights. Okavango Delta, Botswana.We leave our campsite in Maun and jump into 4x4 trucks to begin our excursion into the Delta making our way to the Mokoro stations. Here we meet our local Tswana polers that will be our guides on this expedition. We travel by Mokoro (dugout canoe) through the giant lily pads and tall grasses finally reaching our tented camp after travelling a series of channels. We include a walking safari where you can search for the resident wildlife and variety of birds before relaxing at the campsite for the late afternoon.
Day 15. Okavango Delta to MaunWe have the morning to take an easy paced mokoro ride back out of the Delta to the polers station and then back to camp in Maun. We aim to be back around noon and if time allows, recommend that you take the opportunity to enjoy the scenic flight over this incredible UNECO heritage site. Otherwise, relax by the pool or head into town for the afternoon.
Day 16. Maun to Nata Highlights. Elephant Sands, Nata, Botswana.We make our way toward the open wildlife corridor between Naxi and the Makgadikgadi plans this morning. Our final stop is Elephant sands in Nata after a stop to see one of Africa’s most iconic trees - the Baobob. Elephants sands is famous for its visitors of elephants as there are no fences so the wildlife in the region can roam freely from one waterhole to the next. This is an incredible unique experience to watch wild elephants at such close proximity.
Day 17. Nata to Kasane Highlights. Chobe Fish Eagle Cruise, Botswana.Today we are making our way toward Chobe National Park. We are camp in Kasane just outside the park and after arriving and setting up we are embark on the ‘Fish Eagle’ river cruise on the Chobe River. Your first opportunity to see some of the incredible wildlife this park has to offer, specially the elephants, hippos and buffalo all coming to bath on and drink on the river edge.
Day 18. Kasane to Livingstone Highlights. Chobe National Park Game Drive, Botswana.This morning we rise early and head out on a 4x4 open vehicle game drive inside Chobe National Park. Moving on from Chobe and Kasane we are crossing the border this morning into Zambia making our way to Livingstone and the home of the mighty Victoria Falls.
Day 19. Livingstone Highlights. Livingstone Activities, Zambia.Today is yours at leisure to explore the Victoria Falls area. You will have been briefed on all of the optional activities on arrival so can choose to have a day to yourself relaxing by the pool or get involved in some of the many activities in the area.
Day 20. Livingstone to Victoria Falls, ZimbabweToday we are crossing the border to Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe. After border formalities are done we set up camp, met your new group and tour leader and have the afternoon free to explore on the other side of the falls.
Day 21. Victoria Falls to Hwange National Park Highlights. Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe.We depart the Victoria Falls area this morning and make our way to Hwange National Park. Once we arrive to camp and set up we are joined by our local guides who will take us on an open vehicle game drive in the late afternoon.
Day 22. Hwange to BulawayoThis morning we depart Hwange and head south to Bulawayo where you have a free afternoon to explore Zimbabwe's second largest city.
Day 23. Matobo National Park Highlights. Matobo National Park, Zimbabwe.Rising early to meet our local guides and change to the 4x4 game vehicles, this morning we have a half day tour in this incredible national park. The reserve has a large population of both black and white rhinos and if the guides think it is safe, we will do a walk on foot to search for these beautiful animals.
Day 24. Bulawayo to Masvingo Highlights. Great Zimbabwe National Monument, Zimbabwe.Heading east of the country we make our way to Masvingo. Nearby is one of the most important UNESCO World Heritage and archaeological sites in Southern Africa dates back to 1200AD: the Great Zimbabwe National Monument. We camp nearby and explore the ruins at leisure and with a local guide who will give you basic information of the area.
Day 25. Masvingo to Bandula area, MozambiqueToday, we pass the spectacular Birchenough Bridge (named after Sir Henry Birchenough) and one of many scenic features of eastern Zimbabwe en-route to the border. Crossing into Mozambique we travel a short distance to our camp set on the beautiful banks of the Chicamba Dam in a 550-hectare conservancy in the Manica province. Explore the area and relax at the dam’s edge with a cool drink to watch the sun as it sets.
Day 26. Bandula area to Vilanculos Highlights. Vilanculos, Mozambique.It’s beach time! Leaving early, we make our way to the spectacular Indian Ocean coast and the quaint town of Vilankulo (or Vilanculos), the Gateway to the Bazaruto Archipelago. On arrival, we board our dhow safari boat to our camp which is located 10km from the town. Relax in the afternoon is this tranquil setting.
Day 27. Vilanculos Highlights. Magaruque Island, Vilanculos, Mozambique.Rising to the sweet sound of the ocean, we board an Arabic dhow sailing boat and set off to Magaruque Island, the third Island in the archipelago and the closest to Vilanculos. Here you can enjoy the island at leisure. Snorkel the vibrant and colourful reefs, swim in the warm turquoise waters or simply relax on the white powdery beach. A delicious lunch will be served under the shady palms before setting sail back to our camp for the evening.
Day 28. Vilanculos to Tofo, Inhambane Highlights. Inhambane, Mozambique.From one beach to another, we travel via Inhambane to Tofo where we will spend the next 2 nights. Tofo is a small beach town with lovely open beaches, where the pace of life slows allowing you to relax and soak up the atmosphere. Optional activities such as horse riding, snorkelling and scuba are on offer as well as an array of bars and restaurants to sample some of the local drinks and cuisine.
Day 29. Inhambane Highlights. Tofo, Inhambane, Mozambique.If the delights of the ocean are your forte, then head out and explore the reefs and colourful marine life found in this warm watery haven on this free day. Alternatively explore the town of Inhambane and its rich history and the dune coconut palms forest, planted by the Portuguese and local Bitonga people to supply the thriving copra trade. There are some exciting bars and restaurants in the area - sample the local seafood, the area is famous for it - and the local beer (called ‘2M’).
Day 30 . Tofo, Inhambane to BileneHeading further south today, we stop for our last night on the coast of the small town of Bilene in the Gaza province. Our camp is nestled on a hill overlooking the Uembje lagoon. Once camp is set, enjoy snorkelling and swimming in the warm Indian ocean.
Day 31. Bilene to Hazyview, South AfricaLeaving the warm azure waters behind it’s time to cross the border into South Africa, where we head for southern Africa’s premier game reserve, ‘Kruger’. Our campsite for the next two nights is spent outside of the reserve and its here we immerse ourselves in the local culture and enjoy Shangaan tribal dancing and singing around an open fire.
Day 32. Kruger National Park Highlights. Kruger National Park, South Africa.Waking at sunrise, we board our open 4x4 safari vehicles lead by a local expert guide and prepare for our full day game drive. Kruger is home to over 505 species of birds, 148 species of mammals and many reptiles which we enthusiastically search for during the morning and afternoon. We return to our campsite outside of the park gates and celebrate our game viewing experience with a nice dinner around an open fire.
Day 33. Hazyview to PretoriaToday we make our way to Pretoria where the tour ends in late afternoon.
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.
Situated in the heart of Pretoria's diplomatic district, this hotel offers twin/double en-suite rooms, a fully stocked restaurant/bar and a swimming pool for those chilled days.
* 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 Cape Town early on day 1; we strongly recommend therefore that you plan to arrive the day before departure to overcome any jet-lag and to 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 this part of Africa. Accommodation is usually available locally on arrival but you can also pre-book this with Acacia. There is a variety of activities and excursions in the Pretoria area you can arrange locally or with your Tour Leader.
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 ground sheets, 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 the Okavango Delta on day 14 we use twin share pre-erected tents with en-suite facilities.
24-seater, self contained, custom-built safari truck with onboard tables, plug sockets, freezer, water tank, library, i-pod jack, safety features and 70-litre individual lockers; 12 Seat overland truck, mokoro (dugout canoe), river boat, 4x4 safari vehicles and dhow sailing boat.
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. These local services are included in the Local Payment.
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.
32 Breakfasts, 26 Lunches, 26 Dinners
29 days camping in 2-person dome tents, 2 nights dorm, 1 night tented camp with en-suite facilities
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 an optional add-on for this tour.