Your Quick Tour Summary
Traversing the Kalahari and Namib deserts offers an abundance of scenic, wildlife and cultural attractions. Explore the sights of Cape Town; view the mighty Augrabies Falls and Fish River Canyon; search for wild animals of the Kgalagaladi and Etosha National Parks; walk the highest sand dunes of the world in the Namib Desert; meet the ancient Bushman tribe and walk and mokoro in the beauty of the Okavango Delta; enjoy sunset and wild animals along the Chobe River ending with the unforgettable sight of Victoria Falls - experience this exciting route on a comfortable fully serviced camping safari!
16 nights fully serviced camping, 2 nights hotel accommodation in Cape Town & 1 night guesthouse accommodation in Swakopmund & 1 night hotel accommodation in Victoria Falls.
All meals when camping. Breakfast only in Cape Town, Swakopmund & Victoria falls.
Camp Bed & Sleeping Bag & pillow included
Pre / Post Accommodation & Transfers:
May be pre-booked for Cape Town & Victoria Falls
This safari is recommended for healthy, active participants looking for an adventurous holiday.
ITINERARY TOUR CODE: GTN
DAY 1/ 2: CAPE TOWN
The tour starts on day 1 with a pre departure meeting at 18h00 in the lobby of the hotel. Set against the majestic Table Mountain, recently selected as one of the New 7 Natural Wonders of the world, Cape Town offers scenic, historic and cultural attractions. After breakfast on day 2, you will meet your Kiboko guide in the reception area of the hotel before departing on a full day peninsula tour. Leaving from the Breakwater Lodge at approximately 08h00 we will drive to Table Mountain (weather permitting) to ascend with the aerial cable cars (own expense). The first tourists travelled to the top of Table Mountain on 4 October 1929 and since then more than 20 million people have travelled up in progressively better cable cars. Enjoy the breathtaking 360° view of Cape Town, the Atlantic Ocean, Robben Island and the neighboring peaks. Your tour of the peninsula will continue along the Atlantic seaboard via Hout Bay and Chapman's Peak to the Table Mountain National Park. Here you will get the opportunity to explore Cape Point - the southwestern tip of Africa as well as the Cape of Good Hope - first rounded in 1488 by the Portuguese on their quest to establish trade routes with the East. On the way back we pass through the quaint naval village of Simon's Town, originally named Simon's Vlek after Simon van der Stel, the Dutch governor of the Cape Colony. Time permitting you will visit Boulders beach to view the African Penguin colony (own expense) before returning along the Indian Ocean coastline via Fish Hoek, Kalk Bay and Muizenberg. Dinner can be enjoyed at the bustling Waterfront at clients' own expense. Breakwater Lodge (or similar accommodation).
(Accommodated - Lunch & dinner own expense)
DAY 3: HANTAM REGION
Departing Cape Town we pass through an area known as the "Swart Land" - Jan van Riebeeck called this softly undulating country between the mountain ranges "Het Zwarte Land" (the Black Land) because of the endemic Renosterbos (Elytropappus rhinocerotis). After the rains the Renosterbos takes on a dark appearance when viewed from the distance in large numbers. We stop at a viewpoint on the Piekenierskloof Pass to view this area. From here we pass through the picturesque Namaqualand region with spectacular views of the Knersvlakte from the Van Ryns Pass. During the months of August - October the landscape is transformed into an explosion of color due to the numerous wild flowers of the region. (Serviced Camping - B, L, D)
DAY 4: AUGRABIES FALLS NATIONAL PARK
Leaving the Little Karoo we head north into the Green Kalahari region, thus named for the lush vegetation along the Orange river and the abundant evergreen Acacia Areoloba (Camelthorn) trees found in the area, to the Augrabies Falls National Park. Here the mighty Orange River plummets 56m into the gorge below. This is the world's sixth largest waterfall. The local name for these majestic falls is 'Aukoerebis' or 'place of great noise from which the Trek Boers, who settled here later on, derived the name Augrabies. The gorge at Augrabies is 240m deep and 18km long. Because of the dry environment there is not much game viewing in the area but you will have the opportunity to see the Rock Hyrax (Dassie), which is the closest living relative to the African elephant. We spend the afternoon enjoying the falls from its many viewpoints. (Serviced Camping - B, L, D)
DAY 5/ 6: KGALAGADI TRANSFRONTIER PARK
This morning we travel through the Orange River wine region around Upington. This region produces about 40% of South Africa's grape exports. Look out for the Sociable Weavers Nets in the Camelthorn trees and utility poles along the side of the road. The Sociable Weaver is master of construction and nests can provide a home for up to 300 birds. We head north into the Kalahari and the magnificent Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park. Covering over 3.6 million hectares this is one of the largest reserves in Africa. Due to sparse vegetation in the area excellent predator sightings are common including that of the famous black mane Lion. We enjoy early morning and late afternoon game drives in the Park. (Serviced Camping - B, L, D)
DAY 7: FISH RIVER CANYON
Leaving the Kalahari region we head west and cross the border into Namibia. It was originally a German colony until the end of the First World War when the League of Nations set South Africa as administrator naming the country South West Africa. Namibia finally gained independence from South Africa on 21st March 1990. We travel through a predominantly arid area with an average annual rainfall of less than 10ml. Fish River Canyon is the second largest in the world and largest in Africa. It is 160km long, 27km wide at its widest and at places 550m deep. The Fish River is the longest interior river in Namibia and flows intermittently, usually flooding in late summer. The rest of the year it is a chain of long, narrow pools. Late afternoon we drive and walk along the rim of the canyon taking in the sunset from the various viewpoints. (Serviced Camping - B, L, D)
DAY 8/ 9: SESRIEM/ SOSSUSVLEI
Our journey takes us north through ever changing scenery to our campsite located on the edge of the Namib Desert, considered by many geologists to be one of the world's oldest deserts. We hike up Elim dune to witness the amazing sunset over the dunes. The following morning is an early departure driving 55km through the dune belt while the sun rises around us. The incredible changing colours allow amazing photo opportunities. We undertake a 5km walk to Sossusvlei and Deadvlei. The name "Sossusvlei" is of mixed origin, and roughly means "dead end marsh". Sossusvlei owes this name to the fact that it is a drainage basin without outflows for the ephemeral Tsauchab River. The pan holds rainwater to form a lake and due to the high clay content of the ground, water is retained for long periods of time. Deadvlei is another clay pan, about 2 km from Sossusvlei. A notable feature of Deadvlei is that it used to be an oasis with several acacia trees. The pan is thus punctuated by blackened, dead acacia trees, in vivid contrast to the shiny white of the salty floor of the pan and the intense orange of the dunes. This creates a particularly fascinating and surrealistic landscape, that appears in uncountable pictures and that has been used as a setting for films and videos. In the afternoon we enjoy a short hike through the Sesriem Canyon, which is a natural canyon carved by the Tsauchab river in the local sedimentary rock, about a kilometer long and up to 30 meters deep. A portion of the canyon permanently contains water, which many animals use. (Serviced Camping - B, L, D)
DAY 10: SWAKOPMUND
Today we travel through the Kuiseb canyon, site of the famous book by Henno Martin, The Sheltering Desert before we stop off at Walvis Bay to view the flamingos (seasonal). The Walvis Bay wetlands - the lagoon, mudflats, shoreline and salt works - constitute the single most important coastal wetland in southern Africa for migratory birds. The wetland therefore serves mainly as a dry-season and drought refuge for migrating species like the Greater and Lesser Flamingos, Plover, Grebe and African Black Oystercatcher. We arrive in Swakopmund, a quaint beach town with a strong German influence and with a sizable part of its population still German-speaking today. Founded in 1892 as the main harbour for German South-West Africa, Swakopmund is German for "Mouth of the Swakop" as it is at the mouth of the Swakop River. We spend the afternoon and following day exploring this German colonial town or booking one of the numerous optional excursions (own expense). Activities available include hot air ballooning or scenic flights over the vast Namib Desert. Accommodation Dunedin Star Guesthouse (or similar). (Accommodated - B, L - dinner own account)
DAY 11: SPITZKOPPE
Leaving Swakopmund after lunch we set up camp among the boulders of the Spitzkoppe Mountains. The afternoon is free to explore the stunning surrounding area on foot. Northeast of Swakopmund is the stark grandeur of The Spitzkoppe (sharp head), one of Namibia's most recognizable landmarks. The summit of this imposing granite rock formation (1,728m) was first scaled only in 1946, and its shape has inspired its nickname, The Matterhorn of Africa. The spectacular setting of our remote bush camp is sure to leave a lasting impression.
(Serviced Camping - B, L, D)
DAY 12/ 13: ETOSHA NATIONAL PARK
We enter Etosha and travel through the park to Okakeujo Restcamp. This Park is one of the most important reserves and game sanctuaries in Africa with thousands of wild animals such as blue wildebeest, springbok, zebra, kudu, giraffe, cheetah, leopard, lion and elephant making this area their home. Floodlit waterholes at Okakeujo & Namutoni Restcamps attract an abundance of animals throughout the evening, providing us with many amazing wildlife sightings. We enjoy early morning and late afternoon game drives. Overnight Okakeujo & Namutoni Restcamps inside Etosha. (Serviced Camping - B, L, D)
DAY 14: OKAVANGO RIVER
We enter the Caprivi Strip where camp is set amongst the lush vegetation overlooking the Okavango River. Enjoy sunset on the deck.
(Serviced Camping - B, L, D)
DAY 15/ 16: OKAVANGO DELTA
Crossing into Botswana we travel by road to the edge of the Okavango Delta. We transfer 2-3 hours by boat to Pepere island in the delta. The following day we do mokoro and game walks on the island and the smaller islands in the area. The activities included are Mokoro trips, scenic boat tours and game walks on the island. (Serviced Camping - B, L, D)
DAY 17: KWANDO RIVER
Departing the Delta by boat we return to our vehicle and we cross back into Namibia. Driving through the Caprivi we stop at some traditional Caprivi villages and have a chance to buy their famous weavings before setting up camp on the banks of the Kwando River.
(Serviced Camping - B, L, D)
DAY 18/ 19: CHOBE RIVER
Crossing into Botswana via the Chobe National Park we overnight on the banks of the Chobe River. Chobe is famous for its beautiful scenery, magnificent sunsets and abundance of wildlife and birdlife. Chobe National park was officially declared a national park in 1967. The park is probably best known for its huge herds of Elephants which number in excess of 50 000. The park is dominated by the Chobe River, which runs through the park and where animals are regularly spotted coming to drink. Habitat's found in the Chobe National Park range from flood plains, Mopani trees, baobab trees, acacia woodlands, to verdant flood grasslands and thickets bordering the Chobe River. The following afternoon we enjoy a sunset Game viewing boat cruise on the Chobe River. An optional morning Game Drive is possible (own account).
(Serviced Camping - B, L, D)
DAY 20: VICTORIA FALLS
After breakfast we travel across the Zimbabwean border to Victoria Falls, without doubt one of the greatest and most spectacular sights in Africa. The afternoon and following morning is spent at leisure to browse the local markets, to experience the many optional activities on offer in the adrenalin capital of Africa including white water rafting, bungi jumping, microlighting/ airplane or helicopter flights over the Falls, rhino walks, elephant back safaris, and to visit the Falls (own expense). Overnight Victoria Falls Rainbow Hotel (or similar).
(Accommodated - B. Lunches and dinners own account)
DAY 21: VICTORIA FALLS
Tour ends after breakfast. (B)
This itinerary will depend on local conditions.