Day 1 Johannesburg
Arrive Johannesburg International Airport. You will be met, then driven to Ten Bompas Hotel, in the salubrious suburb of Sandton where an individually decorated, luxury suite has been reserved for you. The afternoon and evening is yours to relax after the flight. Welcome dinner in the restaurant at Ten Bompas. Ten Bompas is an intimate boutique all-suite hotel of immense style and good taste owned by Christoff Van Staden and Peter Aucamp.
Day 2 Phinda, Zululand
9.00 After breakfast transfer to the airport for your private charter to Phinda, a 1.15 hour flight.
Flight departs at 11.00 am Arrive at Phinda Private Game Reserve in Zululand, one of Africa’s most ecologically diverse regions. During the hour’s drive to Phinda Forest Lodge, there is every chance of your first sighting of any one of Africa’s Big Five. Lunch at the Lodge precedes your first game drive.
Phinda Forest Lodge, your abode for three nights, was literally hand-built by local Zulu people to minimise impact on the rare Sand Forest. Beautiful glass chalets float between the forest floor below and towering Torchwood trees above. The walls are windows opening up to the canopy beyond. Outside, the forest is alive with creatures, from the tiny red duiker and suni antelope to the narina trogon and rare squirrel.
Afternoon and evening game drives will reveal the extraordinary range of wildlife.
Phinda is the best introduction to Africa you could dream of.
Day 3 Phinda, Zululand
While staying at Phinda there is an opportunity, if you so choose, to take a flight out to the Indian Ocean coast, flying low over the Saint Lucia Wetlands. This will be described and decided on when there. It is weather dependant and so therefore an optional excursion.
Day 4 Phinda, Zululand
There are so many wonderful surprises awaiting you at Phinda, and the expectation and anticipation that builds with each early morning and early evening game-drive is compellingly addictive in this game-rich reserve.
This Lodge also boasts delightful and hospitable staff, a pool for swimming, and even walks, but only with an armed tracker.
Day 5 Capetown
Today is an extensive travel day.
After the early morning game drive, enjoy a late brunch, before departure to the airstrip.
1.15 pm Departure from Phinda, a charter flight back to Johannesburg for the connection to Capetown.
Arrive Capetown earlyt evening. Welcome to the most beautiful city of Africa.
This evening transfer to Hemingway House- the boutique accommodation gem in Capetown. Formerly a Masonic lodge, Hemingway House is your oasis for the next three nights. Hemingway House is one of the most remarkable venues in Cape Town. Essentially a veranda house, it has been converted to make the most of an open central courtyard with a sunken pool surrounded by a terrace, and a sitting area shaded with vines.
A welcome supper will be served.
Day 6 Capetown
Your excursions in and around Cape Town elucidate its colourful history and immense, quite breathtaking scenery. We include visits to Table Mountain, the Old Fort of the Dutch East India Company, District 6 museum and the Malay Quarter.
Dinner “in” at Hemingway House.
Day 7 Capetown
This morning a moving visit with Grassroutes Tours into the heart of one of South Africa’s biggest
Townships. Here we will visit some of the projects that are making a big difference to the lives of so many township children.
We will have lunch in one of the most unusual settings.
This afternoon will be free to shop and discover Capetown; all that wonderful art and craft.
Dinner at one of the city’s most regarded restaurants.
Day 8 Cape of good hope – Constantia – Wine Country
Today a drive discovering the Cape Of Good Hope and the South Atlantic coast line.
Exhilarate to the drive around the coast to the Cape of Good Hope, passing through picturesque seaside villages abounding with interesting little shops, and quaint architecture, stopping for lunch over the water at Bertha’s.
This afternoon visit the most outstanding historic wineries of Buitenverwagting and Klein Constantia. The Manor House of Groot Constantia, the home of the first Dutch Governor of the Cape Of Good Hope, will bring the history of the early Cape Settlement alive.
Our last night to enjoy the privacy of Dinner “in” at Hemingway House.
Day 9 Franschhoek Cape Wine Country
We leave Dale and her warm and friendly staff at Hemingway House and take a most scenic route to the pretty little wine village of Franschhoek. With rock outcrops and rugged hills, the drive this morning is one of the most beautiful in the whole of the Cape Region.
The afternoon will be free to wander the streets and shops of Franschhoek or just put your feet up for a few hours at Auberge du Quartier Francais.
A Degustation Dinner at Auberge du Quartier Francais, with a local winemaker will be one of the gustatory highlights of the trip, as their award winning chef maintains an exceptional reputation for innovative, seasonal food.
Your accommodation is at Auberge du Quartier Francais, where there is a real sense of hospitality and style.
Day 10 Franschhoek Stellenbosh Cape Wine Country
A leisurely start this morning before a short but scenic drive to Boschendal Estate. It lies between Franschhoek and Stellenbosch and is probably the most beautiful of all the Cape wineries. Tucked in below some startling mountains, the Cape Dutch homestead, winery buildings and vineyard are almost too beautiful to be real.
Onto Stellenbosh, in the centre of the Cape Winelands. Stellenbosch was established in 1679 by Governor Van der Stel. This famous university and wine town has much to offer historically and the shopping is often good.
After lunch at Terroir, currently Restaurant of the year in South Africa, we make a visit to Waterford Winery to meet wine-maker, Kevin Arnold.
Dinner at Reuben’s in Franschhoek . Overnight: Auberge du Quartier Francais.
Day 11 Franschhoek Cape Wine Country
A morning to take it easy or join us at Museum van de Caab at Solms-Delta.
This special museum tells the story of Delta farm, which is typical of all the old farms in the Drakenstein Valley, but the story of Delta farm cannot stand on its own. Its significance lies in its relationship to greater events and historical processes that shaped the human fabric of the Drakenstein Valley, and on a broader scale, South African society.
Arrive at Boekenhoutskloof Winery where our friend Marc Kent, a great raconteur and outstanding winemaker will host the afternoon with a tasting of his awarded wines.
Tonight meet Topsi, one of the greatest characters in the South African gastronomic field and fondly regarded for her wealth of knowledge, training of innumerable young chefs, commitment to regional food, recording of traditional recipes as well as her “talking toucan” who sometimes ruptures the conversation during dinner.
Overnight: Auberge du Quartier Francais.
Day 12 Kruger National Park Private Game Lodge
7.30 Departure for the drive to Capetown airport.
This morning fly from Cape Town to Nelspruit. Depart Capetown 9.45 am .
Arrive Nelspruit at 12.00 pm where you will board a private charter for a 30-minute flight to Londolozi airstrip. Lodge staff will transfer you to your atmospheric suites at
Londolozi’s Bateleur Camp where you reside the next three nights.
Londolozi is in the Sabi Sand Game Reserve, bordering the Kruger National Park, and is without peer for its efforts at Leopard conservation.
Characteristic species to be seen are: leopard, lion, cheetah, spotted hyena, buffalo, elephant, white rhino, hippo, giraffe and impala.
We saw all these animals and more while at Londolozi in August 2003 and 2005, and this time of year (being winter and therefore with reduced greenery) is thought to be the very best time for wildlife viewing in Southern Africa.
Day 13 Kruger National Park Private Game Lodge
The Shangane of South Africa’s lowveld are well known as skilful trackers of game, but it was as traders that their ancestors first moved into this area in the 1700s.
The effects of Dutch settlers, the discovery of gold at Johannesburg, British rule and eventually apartheid South Africa, forced removals and the homeland system took its toll on the Shangane, but recent years have seen new developments. The Shangane communities are embracing ecotourism throughout the lowveld. They make up the majority of staff in the national park and the private lodges.
New institutions aimed at adding relevant modern skills – such as hotel hospitality and food service, nature guiding and lodge management – to ancient, traditional ones such as the tracking of big game, have sprung up in the lowveld.
Our trackers at Londolozi will be Shangane tribes people.
Day 14 Kruger National Park Private Game Lodge
Another wonderful day in Wild Paradise. There is plenty of opportunity for the very best elephant viewing in this part of Kruger. There are often huge herds of elephants with their tiny, long- trunked, newly borns, busy working out what their trunk is all about!
Day 15 Kruger Via Johannesburg – Windhoek – Namibia
If you are choosing to end the tour at this point, we will have you back at the Johannesburg International Airport at 11.00 am.
Leave Londolozi on the 09.30 charter (arriving Johannesburg at 11.00 and check in for a flight to Namibia, Windhoek on the SAA flight at 13.20.
A flight over Botawana into Namibia to begin the final chapter of the Southern African Adventure.
On arrival in Windhoek, the late afternoon is free to enjoy the accommodation we have chosen for you, and time to catch your breath.
In the evening, depart by small coach for “NICE” – Namibian Institute of Culinary Education – a brand new concept that has been started by Stefan Bruckner, one of the owners of Wolwedans.
Dinner in a relaxed but elegant environment.
Day 16 Windhoek Onguma Plains camp Etosha National Park
After breakfast, check out and depart on a short tour of the Katatura township area where we will visit a craft centre and also have a light lunch. Arrangements can be made for any purchases to be kept for you and either shipped to Australia, or brought to the airport to meet you on our way out.
Following this, travel to Eros Airport and depart on a private charter to Onguma Plains Camp.
Please note that all charter transfers are in light aircraft that carry between five and seven passengers. These planes are limited with regards to the weight that they can safely carry. It is therefore vital that all passengers adhere to the luggage restriction of ten (10) kilogrammes per person in a soft bag. In addition, please let us know if you are over 1.82 metres (6’2”) tall.
Arrangements have been made to leave luggage in Windhoek for pick-up at the end of the Namibian adventure.
In the heart of an Ondogora forest, on the edge of Etosha National Park, lies a small, intimate tented camp that has simplistic elegance, luxury and style. The interior is casual and timeless and natural materials such as wood, stone and natural textiles make it a visual and tactile experience, to be enjoyed by all those who stay within its surroundings.
The tents are luxuriously appointed with crisp, white linen, goose feather duvets and en-suite bathrooms featuring a romantic stone bath and a natural outdoor shower as well. All the elements of romance have been incorporated to provide a unique bush experience around a waterhole. Visitors to this unique attraction include rhino, lion, various antelope, birds and other wildlife. Activities which are offered at the camp include game drives and nature walks on the property and morning game drives into Etosha National Park.
Overnight at Onguma Plains Camp.
Day 17 Onguma Plains camp Etosha National Park
Morning game drive into the Etosha National Park with lunch back at Onguma. In the afternoon a game drive on the property, this will continue into an evening game drive.
Overnight at Onguma Plains Camp.
Day 18 Onguma Plains camp Etosha National Park – Namib Rand
After breakfast and, time permitting, a game drive, then the tour continues to the Namib Rand by charter aircraft.
Lunch on arrival at Wolwedans Lodge.
Wolwedans lies in the Namib Rand Reserve, some seventy kilometres south of the Sesriem gate. The habitat here is soft on the eye with exquisite deep orange dunes, towering mountains and pale gold “fields” of desert grass which sustain oryx, springbok, ostrich and other animals. The colour contrasts and immensity of the surrounds, combined with the absolute stillness is breathtaking.
Accommodation is in wonderful chalets, which combine a log cabin and a tented design. Each cabin has huge three quarter beds with mosquito nets, 220V solar power lighting and an en suite shower and flush loo (slightly offset from the bedroom). The water from the shower irrigates an indigenous acacia tree outside the chalet. Three sides of the bedroom area are canvas and can be rolled up to create the most wonderful view in the world facing the mountains and the sunrise.
This afternoon the group will be taken on a nature drive into this exquisite area.
Overnight at Wolwedans Lodge
Day 19 Wolwedans – Namib Rand
Early morning departure on a hot-air balloon flight followed by a champagne breakfast and a leisurely drive back to the lodge. This is an optional extra, for those who love the idea of seeing Africa from a hot-air balloon.
Lunch is back at the lodge and the afternoon will be used to further explore the area.
Overnight at Wolwedans Lodge.
Day 20 Wolwedans – Namib Rand Sossusvlei Swakopmund
Breakfast today will be very early and as soon as light permits, we depart by light aircraft to Sossusvlei Lodge at the entrance to the dunes. Here a vehicle will meet the group and take us down to the dune belt at Sossusvlei itself.
Situated in the south-western part of Namibia against the Atlantic Ocean is the desert landscape of The Namib Naukluft Park, containing mainly arid and semi arid ecosystems. Within this park is the popular Sossusvlei area, a depression lined by some of the highest dunes in the world. The dunes are at their most beautiful at dawn as the changing light moves across them, casting long shadows and changing the colour of the sand from deep purple to bright gold – a photographer’s dream!
On very rare occasions, The Tsauchab River does contain water after very good rains thus causing the pan or “vlei” to fill up with water, which remains for a remarkably long period of time. This amazing sight is a magnet for the resident wildlife, particularly gemsbok.
After the dune trip, we will return to the aircraft and continue to Swakopmund and the incredible Skeleton Coast.
The Burning Shore Beach Lodge lies tucked between the ocean and the Namib Desert, alongside the ethereal beauty of the largest sand dunes in the world and overlooking the mighty expanse of the Atlantic Ocean. It is a modern, luxurious establishment located on Long Beach just south of the unique quaint town of Swakopmund. There are seven luxury Rooms and five luxury suites, all enjoying private bathroom facilities.
This afternoon we will experience the dunes on a quad-biking excursion, followed by sundowners and dinner at The Tug, one of Swakopmund excellent sea-food restaurants.
Overnight at The Burning Shore Beach Lodge
Day 21 Swakopmund
A morning dolphin cruise with an informal lunch on the beach will be followed by the afternoon to relax and explore Swakopmund on your own.
Things to do in Swakopmund:
Some options include:
- Local art galleries Tannery and Karakula Carpet Factory Camel farm
- Rossing Uranium Mine Martin Luther Locomotive Arts and craft shops
- Angora Rabbit Farm Aquarium and Dolphin Beach and dunes Sandwich Harbour Spitzkoppe, Kuiseb Delta Cape Cross The German School
- Prison, The Old Post Office and War Memorial Woermann Haus
- Walvis bay lagoon Paragliding Dune boarding
- Camel riding Flood lit tennis courts Fully grassed desert golf course
- Horse riding
This evening we will join in the local flavour at the Brauhaus – a colonial German pub. Germany continues to play a large role in the unfolding history of Namibia. (Don’t mention the war!)
Overnight at The Burning Shore Beach Lodge
Day 22 Swakopmund, Windhoek, Johannesburg
After breakfast and, depending on time, perhaps some time to do some last minute shopping or sightseeing on your own, then we depart by charter to Windhoek International airport in time to connect with our return flight to Johannesburg.
Where we return to Ten Bompas Hotel.
Farewell Dinner at Ten Bompas.
Day 23 Johannesburg Departure
Day at leisure.
Possible excursions: The famous African Township of SOWETO or we can provide an exclusive introduction to a warehouse-gallery that is a huge treasure trove of African art, carvings, weavings and jewellery from all over Africa.
Late afternoon transfer to the Johannesburg International Airport for your departure for Australia.
End of tour
This Itinerary is the Copyright of The Inspired Traveller. We reserve the right to alter the itinerary at any time, in the best interests of our clients, in the event that exciting new excursions, restaurants or artisans are discovered, and in circumstances beyond our control.