South Africa has the moniker of “a world within a nation” because it has a bit of everything – beaches, mountains, cities, winelands, culture, and of course great safari areas. It also at times feels very much like the USA or a European country.
Days 1 - 2
Johannesburg is one of Africa’s largest and most vibrant cities. It is the economic capital of Africa and the gateway to Southern Africa. This bustling city offers a wide range of activities, attractions and plenty to do in and around the city including nearby Pretoria. Downtown is a multi-cultural mixture of traditional medicine shops, Chinese restaurants, taxi ranks and ultra-modern skyscrapers. There are excellent museums, art galleries and organised tours of historical and political interest. The shopping is Southern Africa’s best and the many restaurants cater for all tastes. The nearby township of Soweto is Johannesburg’s most popular tourist attraction.
Situated in the southern reaches of Africa, Botswana is renowned for its pristine wilderness areas characterised by deep lagoons, wetlands, lush palms, rugged hills and desert plains scattered with scrubland. The country’s primary tourist draw card is undoubtedly the vast red expanse of the Kalahari desert and its remarkably beautiful Okavango Delta, the largest inland delta in the world. These natural wonders provide a tranquil haven for an abundance of African wildlife to thrive. Other highlights include the impressive Makgadikgadi Salt Pans, where visitors are privy to massive zebra migrations during the flood season; the Savuti plains, which host large prides of lions; and the Tsodilo Hills, where 4500 rock paintings form a unique record of human settlement over many millennia.
Central Kalahari Game Reserve
Days 2 - 4
Adventurous travellers seeking a truly remote African safari will be thrilled to discover it in central Botswana. The Central Kalahari Game Reserve is the second largest game reserve in the world and one of the least visited, nothing can prepare you for the sheer wonder of exploring this vast reserve with its wild, untouched beauty. The landscape is dominated by sand veld, acacias, and Kalahari apple-leaf, interspersed with grasslands and dotted with occasional sand dunes, pans and fossil river valleys. While the reserve is home to an impressive variety of wildlife, there is one animal that is rather obviously absent, the human being. It is this lack of human traffic, combined with the park’s lack of infrastructure, that makes for a challenging and marvellously authentic African experience. Visitors need to be entirely self-sufficient but those willing to make the effort will be richly rewarded.
Days 4 - 8
Lying in the middle of the largest expanse of sand on earth the Okavango Delta is one of Africa’s most amazing, sensitive and complex environments supporting a spectacle of wilderness and wildlife. Unique as one of the world’s few inland deltas, the placid waters and lush indigenous forests offer a safe haven for innumerable bird and wildlife species. The Okavango Delta offers a number of activities for the visitor; game drives, night drives, birding , fishing, and at some camps walking, mokoro (traditional dugout canoe) and boating can be on offer. One can experience this magical world of islands and waterways from land, air and water. Highlights include wetland adapted species such as the red lechwe antelope, which is perfectly suited to this pristine wetland ecosystem, an abundance of big mammals and charismatic predators, including some of the best opportunities to view African wild dog on the continent, and a magnificent display of bird life.
Days 8 - 12
Situated in northern Botswana, the Selinda Reserve is a 120,000-hectare private wildlife reserve. Sandwiched between the Savute Channel, Chobe National Park and the Okavango Delta, this sanctuary is a prime location that boasts some of the most reliable wildlife viewing for the region without the hordes of vehicles and on-road rules found in Savute. It has been exceptional for African wild dogs in particular, which have denned in the reserve regularly over the last several years. This varied landscape hosts a wide selection of species in diverse habitats. Visitors can enjoy guided bush walks, 4X4 game drives, and boat safaris. Spot an array of magnificent of wildlife such as the rare roan and sable antelopes, lion, buffalo, giraffe, zebra, African wild dog, and large elephant herds.