14 days – Walking South-Africa

(2 Reviews)
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14 days
Accommodated Group Tour
Johannesburg - Johannesburg
South Africa
Min Age : 12
Max People : 12
Tour Details

This accommodated tour starts and finishes in Johannesburg. Explore the big game of the Kruger National Park. We enjoy hiking Swaziland, before heading into the Zulu Kingdom. We visit the wetlands, wildlife and beaches of KwaZulu-Natal, before heading to the mountains of the Drakensberg!

Tour Dossier

Highlights

Mpumalanga Panorama Route – sight seeing; Private Game Reserve – night drive; Kruger National Park – game drives; Swaziland – mountain walks; Zululand – game drives & historic battlefields; Isimangoliso Wetland Park – unesco world heritage site; St Lucia – Hluhluwe game reserve game drive; Drakensberg Mountains – maintain walks.

Please Note

Overnight: 13 nights on safari we stay at small, intimate and often private lodges (including tented camps), with en suite facilities. Meals: 13 breakfasts, 14 lunches and 9 dinners are included. Of which 5 breakfasts & 3 dinners are provided by the lodges. The remaining included meals are provided by the crew, prepared at the vehicle and eaten around the boma or campfire. Transport: we use custom-built safari trucks with 12 forward facing seats. These vehicles are comfortable for cruising with large sliding windows and front hatches giving everyone a good view; or (on 30% of tours) Mercedes Sprinter minibuses with 12 seats and air conditioning (with a trailer for equipment and gear). Limited Participation: An essential part of your safari is some participation. From carrying your own bag to your room and day packs and water bottles on hikes, to packing the truck in the morning – it’s all part of your adventure. Where the tour leaders provide meals we ask that clients help (on rotation) with the washing up. When everyone puts in a little effort the trip will run smoothly and efficiently ensuring it is enjoyable for all involved

Restrictions

We accept children 12-18 with accompanying adults on scheduled tours (for private groups we can accept younger children). If the clients are older than 65 years, then we require a medical certificate too (stating client is fit and healthy to embark on a multi-day tour covering long distances etc) Average age of our clients on this tour is 46 years old.

Extras/Upgrades

Single supplement: €580. Only if you do not want to share with another traveler and insist of having your own room.

Hotel Pickup

The tour starts at 06:30 a.m. on day one of the tour from Rivonia Road Lodge Johannesburg. Due to the early departure time of this safari we recommend that you stay in Johannesburg the night before safari. Please indicate if you require assistance with airport transfers and hotel reservations in the notes section of the booking process!

Departure & Return Location

Johannesburg – Johannesburg

Departure Time

Early morning on day of departure

Price Includes

  • Max 12 people
  • Professional Safari Guides
  • Transport in minibus / safari truck
  • 13 Breakfast 14 Lunch 9 Dinner
  • Entrance Fees
  • 13 nights in hotels, cabins & guest houses;
  • Flexible payment options in multiple currencies
  • No booking or credit card fees
  • Coverage by Guarantee Fund

Price Excludes

  • Visas
  • Travel Insurance
  • Flights (bookable via African Travels)
  • Airport transfers
  • Meals not mentioned
  • Optional Activities
  • Tips
Itinerary

Day 1 - 2 MPUMALANGA [chalet -LD]

[B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner]
After the tour briefing at 06:30am, we depart Johannesburg and head east towards Mpumalanga. During the afternoon we visit the gold mining town of Pilgrim’s Rest, and the viewpoint over God’s Window. Stretch our legs on a short walk from Mac Mac Pools and then make our way to our chalets on the edge of the escarpment.

We are up early the next morning for our first long walk at the Blyde River. We walk from the rim of the escarpment down into the canyon with views over the Three Sisters and the river below, before making our way back up the escarpment again. After lunch we spend the afternoon exploring the forests and waterfalls which make Mpumalanga a beautiful destination. An exciting optional activity is the Graskop Gorge Lift, which lowers you down for a walk through the lush Afromontane forest below (own expense).

Leisurely – Mac Mac Walk – short easy walk to stretch your legs. 2-3km, less than one hour. On a foot path with very limited altitude change.
Moderate – Blyde River Canyon – 3.5hr walk on good paths with some rocky sections.

Day 3 - 4KRUGER PRIVATE GAME RESERVE [lodge BLD]

Blyde River canyon is our first long morning walk as we make our way from the rim down into the canyon with views over the Three Sisters and the river below.
After lunch we make our way to a private game reserve in the Lowveld, and enjoy an afternoon game drive leading into a night drive with a spot light. Tonight our tented lodge is an opportunity to experience the wilds of big game country around a campfire. A highlight of our tour is the early morning game walk with a local ranger. Quietly we venture into the bush, learning the tracks and other signs of the wildlife we hope to track on foot.

The Walking Grade: Moderate
Blyde River Canyon – 3.5hr walk on good paths with some rocky sections.

The Walking Grade: Leisurely
Big 5 game walk – early morning 3 – 4 hr bush walk with ranger to spot game.

Day 5 - 6 KINGDOM OF SWAZILAND [chalet BLD]

We enter eSwatini (the Kingdom of Swaziland) and travel through a lush fruit farming area before heading into the mountains of eSwatini (Swaziland). We spend 2 nights on the outskirts Malalotja Nature Reserve with a full day to walk through this seldom explored mountainous reserve. The Swazi people have a rich cultural heritage and we will visit the craft and medicine markets on day 7 as we pass through the capital, Mbabane.

The Walking Grade: Challenging
4 – 6hr walk through undulating hills of Malalotja Game Reserve to a beautiful waterfall. Uneven paths and this walk has sections of steep gradients.

Day 7 - 8 ZULULAND GAME RESERVES [lodge Bx2 Lx2 Dx1]

Crossing into South Africa we head towards our lodge on a private game reserve situated in the Msinene Nature Reserve. We take a walk with our local walking guide who will point out some of the 540 bird species found in the area, and track the shy Nyala antelope in the riverine vegetation of the Msinene River. The following morning we visit Hluhluwe Game Reserve, a key area for rhino conservation and visit a Zulu village to learn more about their culture. Enjoy sunset and the sounds of the bush before a hearty dinner at the lodge.

The Walking Grade: Leisurely
2-3hr gentle walk on the conservancy.

Day 9 - 10 ZULULAND BATTLEFIELDS [lodge BL-]

We leave the coastline and make our way through the scenic hills and valleys of Zululand to the small town of Dundee. Here battles were fought between the Zulus, British and the Boer troops – war cries still resound in the hills. We spend time at the informative Tulana museum before we settle into our lodge and have some free time in the afternoon.
The following morning we explore the Islandlwana battlefield before we embark on an exciting 4-5hour hike tracing the steps of the two British fugitives through the undulating hills of Zululand to the Buffalo River. Later in the day we visit Rourkes Drift before returning to the lodge.

The Walking Grade: Challenging
4-5hr Fugitives Drift trail through Zululand on uneven paths. It has strenuous sections with some steep gradients. Complete hike is dependent on the Buffalo River water level crossing.

Day 11 - 12 DRAKENSBERG [chalets BLD]

Witness the grandeur of the Drakensberg Mountains or uKhahlamba “Barrier of Spears”. We overnight at the base of the “berg” (alt. 1,600m) and spend a full day walking the mountain trails before taking an invigorating dip in the clear mountain streams of the Royal Natal National Park. The crisp mountain air is refreshing and our lodge is a fantastic place to relax and enjoy the splendour of the mountain views.

The Walking Grade: Moderate
Blyde River Canyon – 3.5hr walk on good paths with some rocky sections.

The Walking Grade: Challenging
2-3hr gentle walk through sand forests and along the estuary shoreline.

Day 13 DRAKENSBERG [chalet BL-]

We start the day with an early breakfast and make our way to Witsieshoek at the foot of the magnificent Sentinel Peak. At the end of a rough gravel road we start our trek, including a short chain ladder section, to the top of the Drakensberg Amphitheatre and the beautiful Tugela Falls (alt. 3,000m), offering unparalleled views down into KwaZulu-Natal. After our walk we make our way to the lodge perched high in the mountains (alt. 2,300m) overlooking the Mont-Aux-Sources mountain range.

The Walking Grade: Challenging
5-6 hrs walk on uneven paths to the top of the Amphitheatre with a short section of chain ladders.

Day 14 JOHANNESBURG/TOUR ENDS [BL-]

A leisurely start to the day, with the chance to spot the endangered bearded vulture soaring overhead, before we make our way back to Johannesburg. Tour ends at /-17:00.

We have chosen this African partner for their commitment to sustainable and responsible African safari tourism. This is reflected in their low impact travel style and as an African company, they have the grass roots contacts to make a real difference in the lives of the people whose communities you will visit. They have over 25 years’ experience and offer only small group tours with no single supplements (there is only an extra charge involved if you insist on the accommodated tour to have your own hotel room).

What is different to other tours
-Small group to max 12 people
-Small 12-seater overland truck with big windows
-No personal lockers
-Single supplement available
-They use open sided 4WD vehicles with local guides for game drives

Sustainable Tourism
Several times a year this local partner operates a trip for underprivileged children from SOS Children’s Village to visit Pilanesberg Game reserve, introducing the children to the wildlife, the importance of conservation and helping broaden their horizons. SOS Children’s Villages focus on neglected and abandoned children and orphans, as well as disadvantaged families. We believe that they are Africa’s future and that environmental education is important opportunity allows them to see for themselves wildlife, nature conservation at work, and also show them the many unique employment opportunities that are available in the conservation or tourism industry.

Map

Photos
FAQ

I'm a solo traveller, is there a single supplement?

On request we can book you a single room. Otherwise, you will be sharing a room with somone else from the same sexe if you are a single traveler.

Which currency is most widely accepted on this tour?

You can use ZAR and your Bank card should be accepted in most supermarkets, lodges and bars

Should I book pre/post tour accommodation?

We recommend you arrive the night before. We can book an extra night in the lodge from where the tour starts.

2 Reviews
Sort By:RatingDate

Brigitte

Solo Traveller

This was an amazing tour, Thandele in the Drakensberg is a must see. Brigitte, Austria

March 17, 2016

Heinrich

Group Traveller

Best tour ever!! Well organised and all the accomodation is very good. Heinrich, Germany

March 17, 2016