Marvel at the wonders of southern Africa as you discover dynamic Cape Town, uncover the natural beauty of the lush Garden Route, bask in the majesty of Victoria Falls, and embark on a truly elegant rail journey on the luxurious Pride of Africa.
Our adventure begins in London, as we board our overnight flight to Cape Town. On arrival on Day 2, we transfer to the 4-Star SunSquare City Bowl, where we enjoy a welcome drink and some time to settle into our new surroundings.
On Day 3 we are introduced to Cape Town with a guided tour, taking in its highlights. We travel to the summit of iconic Table Mountain by cable car (weather permitting), where we are afforded outstanding views across the city. Our next visit is to the Diamond Works, where we witness the art of diamond cutting first hand, seeing the expert craftsmanship that is required to create the jewellery, and learning the history of gold and diamond trading in South Africa. The rest of the afternoon is free. Surrounded by pristine beaches and verdant vineyards, Cape Town is one of the most thriving destinations in South Africa, and is known as a cultural hotspot. Take the opportunity to stroll amongst the diverse architecture, including the Italian Renaissance-style City Hall, discovering vibrant street art, world-class restaurants, and unique shopping opportunities.
On Day 4 we head to South Africa's southwesternmost promontory for a tour of the Cape Peninsula, discovering the Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve and Chapman's Peak. We also visit Boulders Beach, a breathtaking area of white sands and clear waters that is home to a colony of African penguins.
After breakfast, we make the journey to Oudtshoorn along the magnificent Garden Route. Named for the remarkable natural beauty of the lush scenery it cuts through, this famous stretch of coastline runs between Port Elizabeth and Cape Town, at the southernmost tip of Africa's landmass. We visit Cango Caves where we take a tour of the eerie caverns, adorned with otherworldly and beguiling formations. We continue to our hotel for the night, the 4-Star Surval Boutique Olive Estate in Oudtshoorn.
Oudtshoorn is famed for its ostrich population, and we encounter these fascinating birds on a guided tour of an ostrich farm on Day 6. We continue east along the Garden Route, pausing at the peaceful coastal town of Sedgefield for a wine tasting and lunch at Benguela Cove, on the shores of beautiful Swartvlei Lake. Later this afternoon we arrive in Knysna, set on the beautiful and rugged Paradise Coast. Built up around a vast lagoon of the same name, Knysna is known for its annual oyster festival, a revered local delicacy. Our base for the next two nights is the 4-Star Rex Hotel, located close to the waterfront.
On Day 7, after a morning at leisure to discover Knysna's scenic charms, we enjoy a scenic boat trip on Knysna Lagoon, cruising the calm azure waters to the infamous Knysna Heads, which flank the narrow channel between the lagoon and the ocean beyond. We reach Featherbed Nature Reserve and disembark for a nature walk before returning to Knysna for the evening.
Please Note: For departure RSG2002 you will stay at the Protea Hotel by Marriott Knysna in Knysna.
We travel along the final stretch of the iconic Garden Route today, passing lush vegetation, golden beaches and a cornucopia of wild flora on our way to Port Elizabeth. En route, we enjoy a unique encounter with wildlife as we visit Monkeyland Sanctuary - the world's first free roaming primate sanctuary. Set within an indigenous forest area, the sanctuary cares for more than 700 primates across eleven species', including capuchin monkeys and endangered black and white ruffed lemurs. We also visit the Birds of Eden Sanctuary, where we can observe an incredible array of colourful African birds. Arriving in Port Elizabeth, we board our internal flight to Durban, checking into our hotel on arrival.
On Day 9, we embark on a two-night adventure aboard the sumptuous Pride of Africa to Pretoria, travelling through some of South Africa's most diverse and beautiful landscapes on what is known as the most luxurious train in the world. We pause to visit the world-famous ceramic collection at the Ardmore Ceramics Gallery before the Pride of Africa continues its journey north.
We disembark this morning to visit Spionkop Lodge, where we have a choice of two excursions. You may like to embark upon an escorted tour of the historic battlefield, site of a futile battle in 1900 between Boer forces and British troops. Alternatively, enjoy a game drive in the 11,000 acre Spionkop Reserve, with the opportunity to spot a variety of wild animals. Our next excursion is to Nambiti Reserve, a private retreat which houses the magnificent 'big five' game animals. We embark on an incredible game drive across the savannah and grasslands here, hoping to catch a glimpse of lions, leopards, rhinoceroses, elephants and cape buffalo.
Next, we travel northwest across the Highveld grasslands, arriving in Pretoria, the seat of South Africa's government, on Day 11. Our journey ends at the Rovos Rail Station and we transfer to the 3-Star Arcadia Hotel for one night.
We transfer to Johannesburg this morning, where we board our flight to Livingstone in Zambia. A short drive takes us across the border into Zimbabwe, where we check into our hotel for three nights, the A'Zambezi River Lodge, located in a peaceful spot on the shores of the Zambezi River, near Victoria Falls.
On Day 13, we experience one of the highlights of our holiday as we visit this breathtaking natural wonder. Known as 'the smoke that thunders', these impressive waterfalls span the Zambia-Zimbabwe border, plunging dramatically into a chasm and down a series of basalt gorges, creating an iridescent mist that can be spotted from more than ten miles away. This evening, we are treated to a magical cruise along the Zambezi River, allowing us to admire the majestic African sunset as it casts a golden glow across the waters.
Day 14 is free for you to further soak up the splendour of incredible Victoria Falls. This evening, we enjoy a Boma farewell dinner, a traditional part of African bush culture which combines delicious food with a host of cultural entertainment.
Our time in southern Africa comes to an end on Day 15 as we transfer back to Livingstone airport for our flight to London via Johannesburg, arriving on Day 16.
Please note that while every departure of this tour features the same excursions, they may not necessarily be in the order listed above.
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