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17 day Southern African Highlights Safari

Tour at a Glance :

  • Magical Cape Town, with fully guided tour of the Peninsula
  • Beautiful Cape Winelands with visits to well known estates
  • Hermanus, the Riiviera of the South with time for the beach
  • Rovos Rail, Cape Town to Pretoria, one of the world's most luxurious steam train journeys
  • World famous Kruger National Park, rich in fauna and flora, with game viewing in open safari vehicles
  • Victoria Falls, Musi-o-Tuniya, the smoke that thunders
  • Wellness treatment opportunities at specified properties

Day 1

On arrival at Cape Town International Airport you will be met by your Tour Guide who will transfer you in a private luxury vehicle to your hotel, via a short orientation tour of the city.

Cape Grace is situated on its own quay in Cape Town's Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, surrounded by water on three sides and just minutes away from the city centre. Guest rooms are amongst the most spacious in the city and boast magnificent views of Table Mountain, the yacht marina or Table Bay harbour.

Cape Grace's warmth is reflected in the intimate atmosphere and personalized hospitality of the select, friendly staff that have the ability to exceed your highest expectations.

Overnight : Cape Grace

Meals included : None

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Day 2

After breakfast this morning you will be met at your hotel by your Tour Guide, and depart on a full day tour of the Cape Peninsula, one of the world's most scenic areas.

Travel along the Atlantic Seaboard, stopping at a Llandudno look out point before continuing to Hout Bay, a quaint village and fishing harbour with magnificent mountain views and beach. Enjoy a cruise to Seal Island (weather permitting).

Continue on through Chapman's Peak, one of the world's most beautiful coastal drives, to Cape Point and the Good Hope Nature Reserve, which has magnificent fynbos vegetation, birdlife, endemic antelope species and zebra, historic lighthouses and shipwrecks.

After a delicious seafood lunch, you will depart with your Tour Guide to historic Simon's Town, a village with charming Victorian architecture, a naval base and a large penguin colony at the beautiful Boulders Beach.

A visit to the well-known Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens will end off this unforgettable day.

Overnight : Cape Grace

Meals included : Breakfast, lunch

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Day 3

This morning your Tour Guide will meet you at your hotel and depart on a tour of Table Mountain and Robben Island.

To get to the top of majestic Table Mountain, you will take the revolving cable car, which whisks you to the top in a just a few minutes. It's best to visit on a clear day, though a tablecloth of clouds can descend at any time, flowing over the edge like a breaking wave. Legend has it that the tablecloth is due to an old Afrikaner called Van Hunks who sits on Devil's Peak having a smoking contest with the devil himself; they just keep puffing away and neither ever wins.

The mountain is part of a nature reserve and wooden walkways and designated paths allow you to wander around without damaging the unique plant life.

Robben island is situated in the middle of Table Bay, within clear sight of the city. It was on this island that Nelson Mandela was held prisoner for 18 years, much of it under hard labor. Prior to this, the island was a leper colony. The island is now a museum and conservation area and was declared a World Heritage site in 1999. There is plenty of wildlife here too, with antelopes such as springbok and bontebok, grazing the open land, plus a diverse selection of birds, including ostriches and a Jackass (African) penguin colony. Cape fur seals play in the cold Atlantic waters and are food for great white sharks; who along with the cold water and strong currents deterred prisoners from attempting to swim to the mainland.

Evening at Leisure to experience one of the fabulous restaurants in the V&A Waterfront.

Overnight : Cape Grace

Meals included : Breakfast

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Day 4

This morning you will be met at your hotel after a leisurely breakfast and check out, and depart on a tour of the Winelands.

In 1656 Jan van Riebeeck planted the first vines for the Dutch East India Company Garden beneath Table Mountain, and in 1659 he was able to write in his diary: "Today, praise be to the Lord, wine was made for the first time from Cape Grapes".

Start the day with a sparkling wine tasting and cellar tour at The House of J.C. Le Roux, South Africa's leading house of sparkling wine and is dedicated exclusively to the making of this fine product. Employing the most advanced techniques, a wide selection of sparkling wines is produced which includes the South African favourites Le Domaine, La Chanson and Sauvignon Blanc. The making of sparkling wine is the perfect marriage of science and tradition.

Take the chance to appreciate the architecture and rich history of Stellenbosch, lovingly referred to as the Town of Oaks, on a short walking tour before a scenic drive to Franschhoek, the wine and food capital of South Africa.

After an unforgettable lunch at one of the best restaurants in the country, and a visit to the French Hugunot Monument, you will enjoy a Schnapps and Wine tasting at another top wine estate situated just outside Franschhoek.

Arrive at your hotel early afternoon, with the evening at leisure.

Overnight : Le Franschhoek

Meals included : Breakfast, lunch

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Day 5

Le Franschhoek Hotel is perfectly situated to offer the many activities available in the Valley. From Wine Tasting on horseback, to the peaceful tranquillity of fly-fishing, there are activities to suit every requirement.

Located on the site of one of Franschhoek's original country retreats, Le Franschhoek retain its exclusive charm but now has a Cape-contemporary feel. Features include a destination Camelot Spa, a ballroom and conference rooms, tennis and bicycling to wine farms in the surrounding vineyards.

Le Franschhoek also caps the village's already-existing reputation as the country's gastronomic capital and guests will be able to book a table for lunch at the unique Le Verger Restaurant where you may sit outdoors in a charming orchard, beneath a glass roof, which enhances a spellbinding view.

Other facilities include an authentic wine cellar and cigar lounge and a culinary School.

Overnight : Le Franschhoek

Meals included : Breakfast

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Day 6

After breakfast this morning, you will be met and transferred into the heart of the scenic Overberg.

Stops will include the well-known Paul Cluver Wine Estate as well as the old harbour in Hermanus.

In the mid 1980s Elgin - traditionally apple country - was identified as a cool climate wine-growing appellation with the potential to provide slow ripening grapes with delicate aromas and fruit character. Paul Cluver Wines proved to be pioneers in this area and the farm De Rust has been dedicated to the holistic production of fine handcrafted wines ever since. The Cluver family, among the first in the Cape to commission scientific terroir analysis, intend to increase their vineyards from 70 to 150 hectares over the next ten years. The estate falls within the Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve where conservation and sustainable use of natural resources are pursued.

A seafood feast will be enjoyed, literally on the rocks, at Bientang's Cave. This restaurant is also known as the best whale-watching restaurant in the world. The Southern Right whale visits these shores every year from May until December, and here you can sit on the deck, eating delicious seafood and drinking the best wines that the Cape has to offer while watching whales playing in the waves a mere 100m away.

Check into your luxury boutique hotel in the late afternoon, with the evening at leisure.

Overnight : Birkenhead House

Meals included : Breakfast, Lunch

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Day 7

Perched high on the cliffs of Hermanus and overlooking Walker Bay, Birkenhead House is the perfect destination for those seeking a luxury vacation by the sea.

Looking out from the terrace, the beach on the left is VoŽlklip, (translated from Afrikaans means bird stone). This beach lends itself to great bathing; enjoy the vista from the rolling lawns. The friendly staff is always willing to pack a picnic basket to accompany you with a couple of beach bats and balls if you are feeling energetic!

Grotto beach is the largest and longest in Hermanus. This beach has been awarded the prestigious Blue Flag Status. This award follows the following criteria: Cleanliness, environmental protection and rehabilitation, full time life-guards and security. This beach is to the left of Birkenhead House, a ten minute walk will take you there. The endangered Black Oyster Catcher is one of the many bird species that can be seen.

The Birkenhead house offers world-class cuisine as a matter of course, and you can look forward to delicious dishes prepared by the in-house gourmet chef.

Overnight : Birkenhead House

Meals included : Breakfast

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Day 8

Your Tour Guide will meet you this morning after breakfast and transfer you via the breathtaking scenic coastal route to Cape Town Station.

Board the train for your 11:00 departure from Cape Town station and proceed inland via Worcester. Upon arrival in Matjiesfontein, guests will take a tour of this quaint village before departing again at 19:00.

Experience the extravagant elegance of rail travel on Rovos Rail, one of the most luxurious trains in the world, combining the opulence of pre-war travel with subtle modern innovations. Relax in the privacy and comfort of spacious suites, each with a perfect blend of period ambience and modern features.

Overnight : Rovos Rail

Meals included : Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

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Day 9

This 1600-kilometre journey is a perfect illustration of South Africa as a world in one country. Travel the grasslands of the gold rich Highveld to the haunting bareness of the Great Karoo. Trundle through the spectacular mountain ranges and scenic wine lands of the Cape.

Since its establishment more than 10 years ago, Rovos Rail has earned an international reputation for its truly world-class travel experiences. Step aboard the wood-panelled coaches - classics remodelled and refurbished to mint condition - and enjoy fine cuisine in five-star luxury as some of the most varied scenery imaginable unfolds beyond the windows. Recapture the romance and atmosphere of a by-gone era, when privileged travellers experienced the magic and mystery of Africa in a relaxed and elegant fashion.

Arrive Kimberley at 13:00, upon which you are transferred to the historic Kimberley Club for lunch. After lunch take an electric tram journey from the City Centre to the Big Hole and museum, before departing Kimberley at 16:00.

Overnight : Rovos Rail

Meals included : Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

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Day 10

You will arrive at Capital Park Station, Pretoria at mid-day. You will be met and transferred to Johannesburg International Airport for your short charter flight to your exclusive private lodge, Royal Malewane, situated within the renowned Thornybush Game Reserve, adjacent to the Kruger National Park.

Elevated walkways link six freestanding luxurious suites to the library, shop, dining and reception areas. Set amongst indigenous vegetation, each suite has it's own spectacular outdoor terrace with private pool and gazebo. The suites feature a palatial air-conditioned bedroom/sitting room with fireplace, mini bar, antique canopied king-size bed and extravagant bathroom with a window-side Victorian bath and indoor and outdoor showers.

Overnight : Royak Malewane

Meals included : Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

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Day 11

Game viewing at Royal Malewane provides guests with the best opportunities for seeing the natural abundance of big game on the 12000 ha Reserve, home of the "Big Five" - lion, leopard, elephant, buffalo and rhino.

Over 250 recorded bird species are also to be found in the Reserve. Game viewing is tailored to guests' individual needs, either by open Land Rover or on foot.

The expert ranger and master tracker (one of only two in South Africa) accompany the guests.

The order of the day is usually: Early morning game drive followed by a leisurely breakfast. Thereafter, guests can enjoy the luxury of the camp before lunch is served.

An afternoon game drive and sundowners follow the sumptuous high tea, culminating in a night drive in search of exciting nocturnal game.

Dinner is served under the African sky or with silver & crystal in the dining areas.

Overnight : Royak Malewane

Meals included : Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

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Day 12

The main camp complex is the heart of Royal Malewane. African thatched-roof buildings house the library, shop, dining and reception areas.

Furnished with rich antiques and Persian carpets, every fitting creates the feel of original colonial elegance.

There is a wonderful new gym and spa facility offering health and skincare therapy by an internationally qualified in-house therapist.

Guests may enjoy a treatment of their choice at the luxurious spa or in the sala, with only nature surrounding them. Alternatively, they may relax with a treatment in the complete privacy of their own suite.

Royal Malewane's luxurious accommodations redefine the concept of solitude. The suites luxurious interior appointments draw inspiration from the grand colonial ethos; neo-classical refuge in the raw uncompromising bush.

Here, after a long day of exhilarating game viewing, you can journey into dream's domain draped in Ralph Lauren linen, as the lion-roars echo through your window of stars.

Overnight : Royak Malewane

Meals included : Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

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Day 13

Enjoy one last exciting game drive and bush breakfast before you are transferred to the airstrip for the short charter flight into Johannesburg.

On arrival at Johannesburg International airport you will be met and transferred to your hotel, located in the select northern suburbs of Johannesburg.

A complimentary shuttle takes visitors to the elegant shopping districts of Sandton, Hyde Park and Rosebank.

All rooms offer total privacy and most have sunny, private balconies with spectacular views. You can cool off in two large, heated swimming pools and two plunge pools, and within the grounds there is also a floodlit tennis court with a resident coach and an executive gym. Golfers can enjoy the facilities of a nearby club, which offers guest membership benefits.

To pamper the mind and body even further, qualified staff offers a wide range of treatments at The Health Spa. Guests have a choice of dining in The La Belle Terrasse & Loggia fine dining restaurants, or in the more casual Polo Lounge and Bar. Alternatively relax on the Pool Deck with its glorious heated pool and spectacular views of the city and the Zoological Gardens.

Overnight : The Westcliff

Meals included : Breakfast

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Day 14

You will enjoy a leisurely breakfast in your hotel before you are met and transferred to Johannesburg International Airport for your direct flight to Victoria Falls.

Upon arrival in Victoria Falls you will be met and transferred to your hotel situated next to the famed Falls.

For almost 100 years, visiting members of Royal families, international and local statesmen, and celebrities worldwide, have preferred to stay at The Victoria Falls Hotel, where they are assured of privacy and care. An atmosphere steeped in history, combining the charm of the old with the comfort and convenience of today. It is one hotel that can truly claim to be unique.

Overnight : Victoria Falls Hotel

Meals included : Breakfast

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Day 15

Day at leisure to explore and experience this wonderful area.

The most obvious must of any trip to Victoria Falls is a visit to this staggering spectacle. First stop is the impressive Big Tree, a centuries-old, massive baobab, with a girth of some 16 meters. Proceed to the falls and, starting at Livingstone's Statue and Devil's Cataract, walk the full length of the falls through the rain forest. Protection for cameras is strongly recommended. At peak volume, around May, umbrellas and raincoats are necessary.

Zambezi National Park, the heart of a much bigger conservation area, extending into Botswana is noted for its population of regal sable antelope and a variety of big game. Included are elephant, lion, buffalo and plentiful bird life, which you will view from the comfort of open high clearance vehicles.

Relax on the tranquil Zambezi, as the heat of the day passes. A tasty buffet lunch is served on board, with cash bar. Your host guide offers informative info on the Zambezi, the myriad life species she supports and legends surrounding her, as well as answering any questions you may have. Proceed to Kandahar Island where you may spot elephant and other smaller species along the shoreline.

Inevitably, friendships are formed as light snacks and a choice of drinks is served in the dying light of the day. Capture the silhouette of a hippo emerging against a fiery Zambezi sunset on camera, and raise a toast to the wild beauty of Africa.

Overnight : Victoria Falls Hotel

Meals included : Breakfast

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Day 16

Alternatively you could indulge in some adrenalin activities. Experience the roaring untamed great five rapids on the Zambezi River. From the initial safety talk and fitting of equipment at check in, to high siding drill, surfing through the thrilling rapids, enjoying bush cuisine and relishing the Batoka Gorge's splendour before your final ascent. Experienced guides are committed to your safety.

Few activities come close to the exhilaration of approaching the Falls up close in a high-speed jetboat. This experience takes you within meters of the base of the mighty waterfalls to allow an unusual bottom-up view.

Helicopter and fixed wing. Fly low on a light twin-engined aircraft above the winding sleepy Zambezi River before it awakens to the falls and the surviving water recovers from the shock through the down-stream gorges. The only way to appreciate the full scale of this natural miracle. Helicopter option is better appreciated by most, especially photographers.

For the even more adventurous, they could decide to Bungi 111 metres, Tandem Bungi Jump or opt for the Historical Bridge Tour.

An elephant back safari is not just a ride on the largest animal in Africa, it's an unforgettable experience where the client gets to interact with the elephants as well as enjoy a ride through wilderness areas and beautiful riverine scenery. The ride is approximately one hour and the overall interaction time with the elephants is about 3 hours. Trips are available in the morning and afternoon.

Overnight : Victoria Falls Hotel

Meals included : Breakfast

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Day 17

You will be met at your hotel this morning after breakfast and transferred to the Victoria Falls Airport for your connecting homebound flight.

Meals included : Breakfast

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