Arrive at Cape Town International Airport where you will be met and transferred to your hotel, where you will stay for the next four nights. Spend the rest of the afternoon at leisure, recovering from your flight. Built in 1904 as the North Quay Warehouse and converted in 1990 to a luxury hotel, the Victoria & Alfred Hotel is named in honor of the Queen of England and her son who visited the Cape in 1870, when Prince Alfred officially opened the Breakwater basin, today’s Victoria & Alfred Waterfront. You can walk in the utmost safety to some of the finest retail outlets, from designer stores to restaurants, craft markets, cinemas and entertainment in the amphitheatre.
After breakfast this morning, you will be met and transferred to Table Mountain, ascending in the morning via cable car (weather depending). Return to the V&A Waterfront, where you will then board a ferry to Robben Island, for an informative guided tour, done by a former inmate. Visits include the leper colony, the lime quarry and former president Nelson Mandela’s prison cell. Afternoon at leisure to explore Cape Town.
Full Day Winelands Tour, Including a morning wine tasting in the Stellenbosch area, an informative town walking tour and the Village Museum. Lunch stop on the beautiful Helshoogte mountain pass, followed by Franschhoek, visiting the Huguenot Monument. Last stop will be Paarl, with a visit to the Afrikaans Taal Monument and another wine tasting, a cheese tasting and the opportunity to purchase some award winning wines. This evening dinner will be enjoyed at Moyo at Spier, a top-class restaurant offering pan-African cuisine in a superbly stylish setting.
Full Day Cape Peninsula Tour, including the scenic Chapman’s Peak Drive to the Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve. At the Cape Point lighthouse you will get a good idea why early sailors nicknamed it the Cape of Storms. After lunch you will visit Simon’s Town, where you’ll visit the African Penguin colony at Boulders Beach. Stroll through the beautiful fishing village of Kalk Bay and browse through the many antique shops in the area. Return to your hotel in the late afternoon, with the evening at leisure.
After check out you will be transferred to the Cape Town International Airport for your flight to Johannesburg. Upon arrival at OR Tambo Airport you will be met and taken on a short orientation tour of Johannesburg en-route to your hotel. After checking in and having lunch, depart on an afternoon tour of Soweto. The tour of Soweto includes a stop at Nelson Mandela’s former home, now a museum, the Hector Peterson Memorial, commemorating the ten-year-old boy who was the first casualty of the June 1976 Soweto uprising, and a stop at the Regina Mundi Church, where many protest and political meetings were held during the freedom struggle. Visitors will also be driven through some of Soweto’s well-to-do neighborhoods and past shantytowns where thousands live in makeshift tin houses without electricity or plumbing. A stop at a shebeen, or local tavern, for drinks and or snacks is optional but definitely recommended. Return to the hotel later that afternoon, with the evening at leisure. Overnight at the Gold Reef City Hotel.
After breakfast this morning, you will be taken on a walk through Gold Reef City. Gold Reef City could have been a good name for Johannesburg, but it is in fact rather Johannesburg’s own theme park where the turn-of-the-century mining town is brought to life in shops, hotels and fascinating exhibits. No vehicles are permitted in Gold Reef City but you can relive a bygone era and travel by steam train or horse drawn carriage. Take a trip underground at the Gold Reef City Mine and learn about the mining of gold – you can even take home a solid bar of gold – if you can carry it away single-handed! Includes an underground mine tour, the pouring of gold bars, gumboot and tribal dancers. After lunch you will be taken across to the Apartheid Museum. The first of its kind, the Museum, with its large blown-up photographs, metal cages and numerous monitors recording continuous replays of apartheid scenes set in a double volume ceiling, concrete and red brick walls and grey concrete floor, illustrates the rise and fall of apartheid: The racially prejudiced system that blighted much of its progress and the triumph of reason which crowned half a century of struggle. Return to the hotel in the late afternoon and spend the rest of your day at leisure.
After an early breakfast you will be met and transferred north, to Lesheba Wilderness, which stretches along the top of the western Soutpansberg Mountains. Located in mountainous terrain, the farm is often lost in morning mist. Overnight in the Venda village – a unique village created by the multi-talented Noria Mabasa, famous for her monumental wood figurines.
Spend the day exploring Lesheba. Game drives are available, but the best way to experience all the farm has to offer is on foot. There are 10 marked trails from 2-5 hours walking time, with paths meandering through the lush bush, over plains and down spectacular gorges. With over 300 bird species and larger game such as white rhino, leopard, giraffe, zebra, sable brown hyena and antelope – you will certainly not be at a loss.
After breakfast and check out you will continue your journey in an easterly direction and arrive at picturesque Shiluvari Lakeside Lodge, set on the banks of the Albasini Dam overlooking the Luonde Mountains. Once you arrive, relax on your waterfront terrace or take a sunset cruise on the motorized raft. Set against a backdrop of Mountains and Forests, Holy Lakes and sacred ruins, Shiluvari welcomes you to the Heart of Ancient Venda and promises to restore your natural rhythm. On a natural peninsula in 30 HA of natural vegetation, Shiluvari’s sweeping views of the Albasini Dam & Luonde Mountains are the perfect base from which to explore this ‘Land of Legend’. Overnight at the Shiluvari lakeside lodge.
Full day Venda tour. Your guides will mystify you with the tales of python gods, ancient lakes and holy forests. You will visit Lake Fundudzi, which is sacred to the Venda people, and listen to the myths associated with this natural splendor. The Sacred Forest will also be visited, maybe you could spot the protector of the forest and listen to the whisperings of the ancestors. Enjoy a picnic lunch at Phiphidi waterfalls.
Full day artist’s tour, incorporating the many varied and talented local artists and crafters, including: The Mashamba potters, Twananani batik factors, John Baloyi – wood carver and philosopher, Phineas the drum maker and Tsonga Textiles the local screen printing and textile factory. Today you will visit all these artists in their own homes and villages and experience this fascinating wealth of Venda and Shangaan culture firsthand. Picnic on the banks of the Ribolla Lake, with the evening at leisure to listen to the sounds of the African night and appreciate the starry African sky.
After a leisurely breakfast you will be met and depart on your journey towards Kruger National Park. Drive through to the northern reaches of the Kruger National Park, entering via Punda Maria gate heading for the Outpost, the only privately owned game lodge in the Makuleke region of the Kruger National park. The Makuleke community was moved off their land in the KNP in 1969, and has only recently reclaimed their land. In partnership with a private game lodge operator, the Outpost has been established. Enjoy an exciting evening game drive in open vehicle landrovers, followed by dinner at the Outpost boma.
Early morning optional game drive or a bush walk with a qualified ranger in a concession covering 25 000 hectares are your choices for the morning. Encounters with Africa’s Big Five and other wild and wonderful wilderness wonders await you. Afternoon siesta, followed by a high tea and then evening game drive and spectacular outside dinner in the finest bushveld surroundings.
You will be met at The Outpost, exiting through the Punda Maria gate looking out for any last minute wildlife sightings, and transferred to the Kruger Mpumalanga Airport for your short scheduled flight to OR Tambo Airport for your international homebound flight.
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