The ultimate 16 day luxury tour of Southern Africa. You'll visit Cape Town, the Garden Route, the Kruger National Park, Victoria Falls & the Okavango Delta, taking in the best boutique hotels and lodges the African sub-continent has to offer along the way. This itinerary is ideal for first-time visitors to the region.
South Africa’s beautiful Mother City has much to offer its visitors, with plenty to do both in and around Cape Town.
Top Cape Town activities include a trip up Table Mountain in the gently revolving cable car, a picnic and stroll around beautiful Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, and a visit to Robben Island - the infamous prison where Nelson Mandela was incarcerated for 27 years.
We’d also highly recommend hiring a car or taking a tour of the Cape Peninsula: stop at the penguin colony at Boulders Beach, look down from Cape Point's dramatic cliffs in the wild and beautiful Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve, and visit the Cape fur seal colony with a boat trip from Hout Bay.
Finally, for a bit of retail therapy, visit the popular Victoria & Alfred Waterfront - a working harbour packed with shops, cafes, pubs and fine dining restaurants.
Set against a backdrop of craggy mountain peaks, the Cape Winelands town of Franshhoek is famous for its gourmet food and, of course, it’s wine.
Wander the main road of this pretty little town and you’ll pass a wide selection of restaurants from casual sidewalk cafes to the world-renowned “Tasting Room” at La Quartier Francais. There are plenty of interesting shops and galleries too, while just outside town you’ll find grand wine estates where you can sip and swirl your way through a selection of crisp whites and full-bodied reds.
For those who prefer to be active, choose between horse riding, hiking and mountain biking trails. A number of excellent golf courses lie within easy reach of Franschhoek, as does the Cape Winelands town of Stellenbosch with its oak-lined streets and historic Cape Dutch buildings.
The small seaside town of Wilderness is best known for its unspoilt beach – a wide, white sweep of sand with hardly anyone else on it. A paradise for nature lovers, Wilderness is a peaceful place where you can spend your days relaxing on the soft sand, hiking well-marked trails through thick indigenous forest, horse riding, paragliding or paddling on the surrounding rivers.
Just a short drive from Wilderness, the pretty holiday town of Knysna overlooks a calm lagoon. Top things to do in Knysna include visiting the elephant park, taking a ferry to Featherbed Nature Reserve, playing a round of golf on one of the championship courses, and you really shouldn't leave before sampling a few of the area’s famous oysters.
For families staying in Wilderness it’s well worth driving the hour or so to Plettenberg Bay: your kids are sure to love Monkeyland, there’s an incredible bird sanctuary, you can go on an ocean safari to see dolphins and whales, and pick from one of the many safe swimming beaches.
Stylish and modern Singita Sweni sits in a private concession within the Kruger National Park. This region of the Kruger is well known for its remarkably high concentration of Big 5, and is particularly good for lion sightings with four formidable prides that often patrol the area.
Set off on early morning game drives to experience the African bush as it begins to stir. Your guide and tracker will go out of their way to find the animals you want to see, and since this is a private concession off-road driving is allowed which means you can get really close to your sightings.
After a delicious lunch out on the deck relax in your luxurious suite, stretch out alongside the lodge swimming pool or opt for a soothing spa treatment before your evening game – predators become more active as the day cools, so this is the best time of day to see them hunt their prey!
The Royal Livingstone sits on the bank of the Zambezi River, a short walk from the Zambian side of Victoria Falls. Travel when the Zambezi is in full flood (between February and May), and you’ll be able to sit on the deck of your hotel and gaze across at the clouds of spray that give the falls their local name Mosi Oa Tunya, the “Smoke that Thunders”.
The Zambian side of Victoria Falls has footpaths opening up to viewpoints and a thrilling crossing of the Knife’s Edge bridge that brings you really close to this incredible waterfall. For a view of the Main Falls you’ll need to cross over to Zimbabwe, or you can take to the sky in a helicopter or – for the more adventurous – a microlight.
Once you’ve had your fill of the falls there are still plenty of other exciting acitivities to do in the area including a Zambezi River sunset cruise, elephant-back safari and walking with lions.
Renowned for its enchanting beauty and prolific wildlife, the waterways and forested islands of Botswana’s Okavango Delta are without doubt one of Africa’s top destinations.
Stay at small and luxurious Baines’ Camp and explore the Okavango's reed-lined channels in a mokoro (traditional dug-out canoe) – keeping an eye out for hippo as well as the delta’s smaller creatures: reed frogs, bee-eaters and the colourful flash of a kingfisher. Game drives give you the chance to spot larger game including elephant, lion, leopard and wild dogs.
Two real highlights of staying at Baines’ Camp are the elephant interaction offered by “Living with Elephants” and the option to sleep under the stars - simply ask for your four-poster bed to be rolled out onto your private deck.
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