DELUXE 15 DAY/12 NIGHT SOUTH AFRICAN CULTURAL ADVENTURE AND SAFARI
Few natural spectacles can rival the Okavango Delta; big cats prowling on evocative floodplains, hippos yawning along lush watery channels, and elephants using their trunks as snorkels. Celebrating the very best of the 1,000th UNESCO World Heritage Site, this signature safari is handcrafted for travel from June to September, when the lush waterways provide a dreamy journey through authentic Africa. Expect mokoro canoes, exceptional accommodations, and inspiring wildlife encounters.
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Day 1: Depart New York or Washington Dulles onto your transatlantic flight to Johannesburg. Arrive in Johannesburg the following day.
Day 2: Upon arrival at Oliver Tambo Airport in Johannesburg, you will be met by a driver and transferred to the Da Vinci Hotel (breakfast included) for some relaxation.
Day 3: After breakfast, you will be met by your local English-speaking driver/guide around 11:00 a.m. until 4:30 p.m., where you will start your City tour of Johannesburg. You will enjoy activities that Include: City Hall, colonial buildings, Rissik Street Post Office) historic building from 1897), Mary Fitzgerald Squire, sculptures, The Nelson Mandela Bridge. Newtown Cultural Precinct – home to Mary Fitzgerald Square, the historic Market Theatre, and Museum Africa., The constitutional hill has a remarkable history about South Africa Law. You will get to learn about the injustices of South Africa’s past while observing the process by which freedom was won and is now protected. From the rebellious Boer soldiers who fought with the British soldiers at the turn of the century, the youth caught up in the Soweto Uprising, to the dawn of democracy and the building of South Africa’s Constitutional Court, Constitution Hill has witnessed it all. On the other hand, Apartheid Museum is for those who would like to experience and understand what apartheid South Africa was really like. By visiting this place, one will understand how to suffer it is being torn by differences and how beautiful it is being united by differences. You will then Maboneng: A neighborhood with galleries, cultural spaces, restaurants, and shops. Later you will be transported back to your hotel at DaVinci Hotel. (BB)
Day 4: After breakfast, you will be met by your local English-speaking driver/guide to start your Soweto tour. Visiting Soweto is highly recommended. It is the most culturally enriching experience. An absolute MUST DO. Pass through the Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital in Soweto (a hospital established during World War II for the British Military). From there head to the very popular and emotional Mandela House on Vilakazi Street where the former South African statesman, revolutionary and philanthropist Nelson Mandela (1918-2013) lived before he was jailed for 27 years for advocating for the rights of black people who were being oppressed by the Apartheid Government. Stop for lunch in Soweto on Vilakazi Street. Just down the street is the house of Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu who was a compatriot to Nelson Mandela in the struggle for freedom in South Africa (both of them are Nobel-prize Winners) You will then be driving through South Africa’s oldest and largest township, get to view the slums and shanty towns that have become established over the years as a result of deep-rooted poverty and high unemployment levels. You will even enjoy the privilege of chatting with some locals going on about their business from housewives to barbers on the street corner (open-air), sculpture designers, carpenters, flea market stalls and the like. Pass Gandhi Square with its statue of Gandhi on your way to the Apartheid Museum. Spend two hours exploring the museum’s impressive exhibits. Visit the Hector Pieterson Memorial, named for a young boy who was killed during a 1976 student uprising against apartheid during which 70 people died. See the Regina Mundi Church, Freedom Square, and the World Cup Stadium before being transported back to your hotel, the DaVinci hotel (BB).
Day 5: Please enjoy a day of leisure and shopping. You will then be met and transported to an evening of dinner and dancing and then transported back to the hotel at around 2 am where you will rest for your morning flight to the Kruger National Park for a Safari. DaVinci (BB)
Day 6: After breakfast, you will be met and transferred to OR Tambo International Airport for your flight to Hoedspruit Airport. On arrival, you will be met and transferred to your lodge in the Kapama Game Reserve, which lies adjacent to the Greater Kruger National Park. Here you will enjoy the next few days experiencing exclusive safari adventures in both open Land Rovers and on foot. The private reserve is home to an abundance of species including the “Big Five.” Being predominantly open savannah and with a near-perfect year-round climate, it is the ideal African safari destination. If time permits you will be able to take an evening game drive before dinner. Overnight on a full board basis at a lodge of your choice: The River Lodge, River Lodge (FB)
Day 7: You will enjoy an early morning game drive at around 5: am in the morning and return and enjoy a wonderful breakfast. The rest of the day or you can enjoy one of many activities such as Bush walks (included in the tariff), Kapama Karula Spa, River Lodge Spa, interaction, Hoedspruit, Romantic, Photographic or Hot Air Ballooning. Around 4:30 prepare for your evening game drive before your dinner at the Boma (weather permitting) Overnight on a full board basis at the Kapama River Safari lodge. (FB)
Day 8: After breakfast, you will then go in a panoramic view of the Lowveld. You will enjoy the Blyde River Canyon which consists of the following viewpoints: Three Rondavels, Bourke’s Luck Potholes, an unusual geological formation and well worth the visit. These giant potholes formed at the confluence of the Blyde and Treur rivers and mark the beginning of the Blyde River Canyon. Gods Window and Pinnacle. You will also get to see Lisbon and Berlin Falls make this an exciting day and get a full picture of this beautiful area The Blyde River Canyon’s lush subtropical foliage makes it the world’s largest ‘green canyon. Return back to the Kapama River Lodge.(FB)
Day 9: After breakfast, you will be met at the front lobby and transferred to the airport for your Domestic flight to Cape Town. In Cape Town, you will be met by a driver and transportation to take you to your hotel, the Commodore Hotel.(BB) The evening will be at your leisure.
Day 10: After breakfast, you will be met by your local English-speaking driver/guide for a full-day tour to explore the beautiful city of Cape Town. Maybe take a trip in the cable car up Table Mountain (weather permitting). Green Market square. Drive past Houses of Parliament and City Hall. If time permits, in the afternoon take a boat ride for a poignant visit to Robben Island where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for many years. If time permits or at your leisure take time to explore the vibrant V&A Waterfront with its many shops, restaurants where you can enjoy a lovely evening dinner to wind down the day. Return back to the Commodore Hotel (BB).
Day 11: After breakfast, you will be met by your local English-speaking driver/guide for your full-day tour of the Cape Peninsula and Table Mountain (weather permitting) if not done the previous day. Drive along the Atlantic Seaboards to Hout Bay. Once a fishing community, it is now one of the most popular residential areas. The harbor still has a charm of days gone by. The tour continues over the famous Chapman’s Peak drive, weather permitting. With a 200-meter drop on one side and a 200-meter rise on the other, you will make your way south following the Atlantic Ocean until you reach Cape Point and the Cape of Good Hope. Said to be the romantic meeting place of the two mighty oceans, the Atlantic and the Indian. There will be a lunch at the Fish Hoek Galley. You’ll continue to pass the naval base of Simons town as you continue along the coast en route to see the Jackass penguin colony, which has become well established at Boulders Beach near Simons town. Your last stop of the day is at the Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens home of some 3,500 species of Southern African fauna and flora. You will return to the hotel in the late afternoon, having seen some of the best the Cape has to offer. Commodore Hotel (BB)
Day 12: After breakfast, your local English-speaking driver/guide will meet you at the hotel for a tour of the Cape wine region. You will depart from the hotel and head north to Paarl. A brief city tour of Paarl follows before you make your way to Franschhoek. After a short tour of the town, you will go to the Solms Delta Vineyard. After a tour through their cellars, you will sample some of their local wines as well as a cheese tasting. followed by a lunch where perhaps you will have a chance to savor some of the fresh trout for which Franschhoek is renowned. After lunch, the tour continues to the university town of Stellenbosch, the second oldest town in South Africa. It is easy to understand why Simon van der Stel decided to settle a village here amongst the mountains. The backdrop of the Hottentots Holland Mountains, the white gabled Cape Dutch homesteads and the oak-lined streets and lanes all combine to give this place a charm that will not be quickly forgotten. Time permitting; you will also enjoy a third and final wine tasting. Then you will set off for your return to the Mother City. Commodore Hotel (BB)
Day 13: Day of Leisure-shopping/relaxing. Meet around 5:30 pm for a final farewell dinner and some social time with local South Africans. Commodore (BB)
Day 14: After breakfast, you will be met at the hotel lobby and taken to the Cape Town International airport for your flight to the United States of America
Day 15: Arrive USA.
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