Itinerary | Nairobi to Joburg
We leave Nairobi at 7am on the first day of the trip. We recommend you arrive in Nairobi the day before the trip departs. If you’re there with time to spare there’s lots to see and do around the city. In Nairobi town is the National Museum and markets. Also Karen Blixen’s house, Langata Giraffe Centre, Sheldrick’s Elephant Orphanage and Nairobi National Park for the first glimpse of African wildlife.
DAY 1: Nairobi to Arusha, Tanzania (L/D)
We head south from Nairobi, through the Masai plains and cross the border at Namanga into Tanzania; arriving in Arusha late in the day. The country we pass through is sparsely inhabited grassland savannah, inhabited by the Masai. Tonight, we stay in a lovely campsite in Meserani, 20 km to the west of Arusha. Visit the Reptile Rescue Park and Masai Cultural Museum by the campsite, and an art gallery selling the strongly coloured Tinga Tinga paintings.
DAY 2: Arusha to Karatu – Serengeti & Ngorongoro Crater (B/L/D)
100 km to the west, we visit the Serengeti National Park & Ngorongoro Crater. We meet our Tanzanian guides with their locally operated 4WD vehicles adapted for safari use They allow excellent viewing through the opening roof hatches. The trip is camping, away for three days and two nights. One of these nights will be inside the park in the parks amidst the animals. If you choose not to visit the park you can wander the markets in Arusha town.
In our 4×4’s we cross the Rift Valley to Mtu wa Mbu (Mosquito River) and then up the Rift Valley Escarpment to the safari town of Karatu to spend the evening at a campsite.
Included Activity: Serengeti & Ngorongoro Excursion
Day 3: Ngorongoro Crater & Serengeti (B/L/D)
An early start to Ngorongoro Crater the largest unbroken caldera (collapsed volcano) in the world. Inside is open grassland and a lot of animals. After our game drive in the Crater, we head down the Crater rim and past the Cradle of Mankind, on our way to the Serengeti National Park. We cross the vast plains as we game drive through the southern and central areas in the park. Tonight we camp in the wild, with no fences between us and the animals, who live as they have for millennia.
DAY 4: Serengeti National Park to Arusha (B/L/D)
In the morning, we head off for another game drive and explore the park. After our morning drive, we return via the Crater rim to our safari truck near Arusha. Then drinks at the bar, to talk about the big 5.
DAY 5: Arusha towards Dar es Salaam (B/L/D)
We head towards the coast past Moshi town the capital city of the Chugga people. Skirting the base of snowy Mount Kilimanjaro we camp on the way to Dar es Salaam.
DAY 6: To the Indian Ocean Coast and Dar es Salaam (B/L/D)
We arrive in Dar to our campsite on the beach of the Indian Ocean. If you decide not to go to Zanzibar, the campsite at the beach is an ideal place to have a few lazy days.
DAY 7: Dar es Salaam and ferry to Zanzibar (B)
From Dar es Salaam we take the ferry to Zanzibar and the old stone capital of the Omani Sultanate. Sandy beaches, spice tours, snorkelling, diving and trips to other nearby islands. Zanzibar is a fascinating place to visit and to take it all in. Over a thousand years trade between Africa and Arabia has resulted in the blending of Arabs and Africans into a beautiful Swahili coastal culture with; wooden sailing dhows crossing the ocean, coconut plantations and fishing villages with mosques on the beaches. Nungwe beach resort on the north of the island has the most beautiful beaches.
Included Activity: Zanzibar Excursion, Spice Tour & Dhow Excursion
DAYS 8-9: Zanzibar (No Meals)
You get your own meals while in Zanzibar, as people like to experience here on their own or in small groups and in accordance with their own budget. Our tour leader joins you and will arrange your activities, while meals can be taken from a wide selection of restaurants to suit any budget. There are also a wide variety of optional excursions.
Stone Town in Zanzibar Town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the old slave market, the spice growing areas, Jozani Forest with Red Colobus Monkeys and in the evening the seafood cafes on the wharf side.
DAY 10: Zanzibar by ferry to Dar es Salaam (No Meals)
Return by ferry to Dar es Salaam on the mainland for another on our beach campsite; late afternoon, or early evening.
Included Activity: Zanzibar ferry to Dar
DAY 11: Dar es Salaam to Iringa (B/L/D)
We head south through Tanzania; our route takes us through Mikumi National Park where we may well see giraffe or elephant grazing beside the road. The road from Mikumi National Park to Malawi takes us through the southern highlands, passing Baobab Valley to Iringa.
DAYS 12-14: Iringa to Lake Malawi, Malawi (B/L/D)
Crossing the border into Malawi, we reach the shores of its huge lake. We spend the night at Chitimba Beach Camp. The campsites and small resorts along Lake Malawi offer sandy beaches, swimming and snorkelling, water-skiing, horse riding or walking in the surrounding countryside. Markets sell carved Malawi chairs, tables and wood carvings
Kande Beach. We head south through the hills and drop down to the lake and Kande Beach resort. Very relaxed and just the sort of beach place you need in Africa.
DAY 15: Lake Malawi to Chipata, Zambia (B/L/D)
Leaving the beach we go inland to spend the night in the capital Lilongwe or camp on route to Zambia after crossing the border. In Zambia, we head along the Great North Road – a sparsely settled countryside with few people or villages for hundreds of miles.
DAY 16: Chipata to South Luangwa National Park (B/L/D)
South Luangwa National Park is well worth the visit. Recent trips have seen: – wild dogs, leopards, lions, and buffalo. We camp by the park and you can game drive into the park. Though the park is open all year, during the rains; which are normally from Jan and Feb to March, the road in can be flooded and the road can be slow to get to the park.
Included Activity: Game drives in South Luangwa National Park
DAY 17: Luangwa National Park to Lusaka, Zambia’s capital (B/L/D)
We leave the park and continue to head west. Passing through the beautiful Luangwa Valley we arrive at the fastest expanding capital city on the continent, Lusaka. At camping Eureka, you may have zebra or antelope grazing by your tents while you sleep.
DAY 18: Lusaka to Livingstone (B/L/D)
Victoria Falls – the Zambezi River plunges 100 metres down a mile wide chasm, creating one of the most incredible natural wonders of the world.
Optional Activity: Zambezi Sunset riverboat cruise
DAY 19: Livingstone, Zimbabwe to Chobe Park, Botswana (B/L/D)
After an early start and a stunning drive, we cross the Zambezi River on the Kazangula Ferry into Botswana. The country becomes lush and forested as we approach Chobe River. In Chobe National Park you can take an overnight game drive; a wild experience – excellent game viewing is a must.
Included Activity: Chobe National Park overnight game trip
DAY 20: Chobe National Park, Botswana to Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe (B)
After returning to camp we head to Zimbabwe and over the border to Victoria Falls. When the river is in full flow, the falling water causes a huge roar and sends a cloud of spray up to 500 metres into the air.
Included: Entrance to Victoria Falls
DAYS 21-22: Victoria Falls (B)
We stay beside Victoria Falls in Victoria Falls town, there is lots to see and do. Adventure activities abound – you can bungee jump, white water raft, and go game-viewing on horseback or walking with lions. More sedate excursions include canoeing, light aircraft or helicopter flights over the Falls and the sunset cruise on the Zambezi. Though the Falls themselves are the main attraction, you can walk in the rainforest along the cliff opposite for an excellent view.
Optional Activities – Bungee jump from the Victoria Falls Bridge, abseil down the Gorge. Fly over the Falls. Whitewater raft down the Zambezi. You can float serenely down the river deep below the cliff topped gorge.
DAY 23: Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe to Chobe, Botswana (B/L/D)
Westwards, leaving Zimbabwe to Botswana, to the small town of Kasane and Chobe National Park. In Chobe National Park you can take an overnight game drive; a wild experience – excellent game viewing is a must.
Included Activity: Chobe National Park overnight game trip
DAY 24: Chobe National Park to Kasane (B/L/D)
Back in camp, you can have a break, after all the adventure. You can take an optional boat cruise on the Chobe River, or spend your time by the pool.
DAY 25: Kasane to Maun (B/L/D)
We travel along the edge of the Kalahari Desert to Maun a small town on the edge of the Okavango Delta, the starting point for the Delta trip.
DAY 26: Maun to Okavango Delta (B/L/D)
A Mokoro is a traditional dugout canoe and your transport into the Delta. As you glide through the waterways, you will see a fantastic array of wetland wildlife, birds in particular, and you will come across hippos in the water and elephants drinking on the shore. You can go on a walking safari to look for giraffe, buffalo and rare antelope – the overnight stay is a great wilderness experience.
Included Activity: Overnight Delta excursion
DAY 27: Okavango Delta to Maun (B/L/D)
Up early and it’s off walking with the guide, a unique chance to see game on foot; elephants, herds of grazing zebra and pods of hippos. Try learning how to pole your mokoro, or try to catch a catfish; the guides make it look so easy. A last swim in the clear delta water before heading back to the truck and campsite for a shower and cold drinks. Time permitting you can take a scenic flight over the Delta from Maun
DAY 28: Maun to Palapye (B/L/D)
We leave Maun for Palapye; a long drive through the bushlands heading southeast
DAY 29: Palapye to Blyde River Area, South Africa (B/L/D)
This morning we cross into South Africa and continue across to our camp overlooking the impressive Blyde River Canyon. Named for the Blyde River that runs through it, the canyon is 26km long, and averages 800m deep and forms the northern edge of the impressive Drakensberg Mountain Range. It is classified as a ‘green canyon’ due to the uncommon occurrence of vegetation that lines it (uncommon as most canyons are in desert areas and are fairly barren). The main viewpoints along the canyon are the 3 Rondavels, named for the shape of the traditional huts or houses the people of the area used to live in; and Gods Window that affords a breathtaking view across the canyon and surrounding area. Please note that there is a small entry fee at each of these attractions that will need to be paid upon arrival. The money generated goes toward the support of the local communities. There are also many locals you sell their local crafts in this area.
DAY 30: Blyde River Canyon to Nkambeni Camp (B/L/D)
Heading through the breathtaking Panorama Route, we stop off at various viewpoints today including scenic God’s Window. We pass through the small town of Graskop, then towards Kruger National Park and our campsite in the park.
Included Activity: Night Game Drive
DAY 31: Nkambeni Camp, Kruger National Park (B/L/D)
We spend the day looking for game in the park. If you wish you can take an evening game drive. Included Activity: Game driving in Kruger National Park
DAY 32: Kruger National Park to Johannesburg (B) We head towards Johannesburg and the end of our trip. There is a lot to do in J’burg so we suggest you allow yourself a few extra days to look around.