Group Size: Maximum 24 passengers
Departs: Scheduled small group departures throughout the year
The Cape Town to Victoria Falls 20 Day tour, highlights Southern Africa’s most incredible sights. Begin your tour at the spectacular Table Mountain in Cape Town and travel all the way up to the majestic Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe. On the way you will have the opportunity to paddle down the Orange River in Namibia before you venture deeper into the Namib Desert. The slowly changing landscapes represent the many faces of this desert country, from the grasslands in the east to the red dunes of the west. After a brisk climb up Dune 45 you’ll experience one of the most beautiful sunrises of Africa. Travel to the bustling town of Swakopmund and enjoy a break by the coast. Next on your list is Etosha National Park. Etosha is the venue for some of the most unique game viewing experiences in Africa. From Etosha you will travel to Botswana where you can take a Mokoro ride through the Okavango Delta and then watch the sunset on a boat cruise on the Chobe River before finishing your tour in Victoria Falls. The bustling adventure town of Victoria Falls also offers a range of optional activities for those wanting a dose of adrenaline!
Day 1 - Cederberg Region
Leaving Cape Town this morning you will travel to the famous winelands region of the Western Cape and enjoy a wine tasting at one of the local wine farms. You will also make a stop at the well-known Spice Route, bordering the town of Paarl. The Spice Route is an estate that brings together a collection of flavours unique to the Cape Culture – including a beer garden, artworks studio, chocolate makers and coffee makers – to name just a few.
No road trip is complete without a stop at a traditional Padstal, these small farm stalls dot the byways of South Africa and offer a variety of homemade treats and bakes. The Cedarberg region not only boasts spectacular mountains and orange farms, but it is also the home of the Rooibos bush. Indigenous to the mountain slopes of the Cedarberg, this herbal beverage has earned an international reputation as a healthy and refreshing alternative to regular tea. A dinner at your overnight stop offers an opportunity for you to get acquainted while enjoying some South Africa hospitality. (LD)
Included Highlight: Visit to the Spice Route.
Activity Package: Wine tasting.
Day 2 - Gariep (Orange) River
Namaqualand presents you with your first experience of the Desert vistas that will accompany you in the days ahead. Continue your journey north and after a short stop for supplies in Springbok, travel to your camp on the banks of the Orange River. If you are fortunate enough to be travelling in the spring months (July to September) you may encounter the wild flowers that have made this region famous. No matter the time of year though, the strange desert vistas offer a unique backdrop to this days travel. (BLD)
Included Highlight: Spring Wild Flowers (Seasonal July – September).
Day 3 - Fish River Canyon
While the Orange River was named after the Dutch royal House, in recent times it has been referred to by its original name of Gariep, which simply means “river” in the indigenous KhoeKhoe language. Beginning its journey in the mountains of Lesotho the Orange River is the longest river in South Africa and offers a unique contrast to the desert landscapes along its banks. The best way to experience the river is by getting out on the water and this morning you have the opportunity to join an optional canoe trip on the river (at own expense). Venturing north you will cross the border into Namibia and travel onwards to the Fish River Canyon, one of the largest in the world. This afternoon you will take a walk along the rim of the canyon and end your day with a memorable sunset on the canyon edge. (BLD)
Included Highlight: Scenic walk along the rim of Fish River Canyon.
Optional Activity: Half Day Canoe Trip.
Day 4 - Namib-Naukluft National Park
Every overland journey has some long travelling days and today is one of those as you venture deeper into the Namib Desert. Your destination is the dune fields that cover the western reaches of the desert. Long dusty roads and sparsely populated farmlands offer an insight into the vastness of rural Namibia. From the grasslands in the east to the red dunes of the west the slowly changing landscapes represents the many faces of this desert country. Tonight you will camp on the doorstep of the dune fields and fall asleep to the unique calls of the elusive Barking Gecko. (BLD)
Included Highlight: Sesriem Canyon.
Day 5 - Namib-Naukluft National Park
Watching the sunrise over the red dunes is an iconic highlight of any trip to Namibia and this morning you will rise before the sun to capture this magnificent moment. A brisk climb up Dune 45 offers you the perfect vantage point to marvel at the changing colours of the desert sunrise. Once satisfied you will descend this famous dune and enjoy a hearty breakfast before catching a 4X4 transfer into Sossusvlei, here you will spend time on foot visiting the pans at Sossusvlei and Deadvlei. Your day in the desert continues this afternoon as your join a local expert for an educational desert excursion. Tonight you will empty the red sand from your shoes and spend the night under the magnificent desert stars, knowing that you have spent a full day enjoying the wonders of this harsh land. (BLD)
Included Highlight: Sunrise hike up Dune 45, 4X4 shuttle to Sossusvlei / Deadvlei.
Activity Package: Guided desert walk with local expert.
Day 6 - Swakopmund
Today you will continue west and make your way to the coastal town of Swakopmund, where adventure and a dose of civilisation await. You will leave the Namib behind and after a stop to mark your crossing of the Tropic of Capricorn, continue to the Atlantic coastline. You will make a brief stop at the Walvis Bay lagoon, hoping to catch a glimpse of the Flamingo’s that feed in the shallows. On arriving in Swakopmund you will have the opportunity to book some of the many adventures on offer. Enjoy a dinner out at a local restaurant tonight (at own expense). (BL)
Included Activity: Tropic of Capricorn, Walvis Bay Lagoon.
Optional Activity: Dinner.
Day 7 - Swakopmund
While for many it is the adrenaline fuelled adventures that will grab their attention, Swakopmund offers all that and more. Take the opportunity today to explore the town at your leisure, as there are a number of attractions for every taste. Not to be missed is the selection of famed coffee shops and bakeries that offer a delightful range of German inspired treats. Swakopmund offers all the conveniences of a small city and is the perfect launching pad for the journey through the northern reaches of the land. (B)
Optional Activity: Dolphin cruise, skydiving, sand boarding, quad biking and dinner.
Day 8 - Spitzkoppe
The massive granite formations of Spitzkoppe tower 700 metres above the desert plains below and the presence of rock art indicates their significance to the San people who lived here many years ago. You will enjoy a walk with a local guide and have the opportunity to view some examples of the San’s rock art before setting of for our overnight stop for the evening. (BLD)
Included Highlight: Visit Spitzkoppe and explore with a local guide.
Day 9 - Himba Tribe
Continue north this morning and on your way you will visit a project that will introduce you to the Himba people of Northern Namibia. The semi-nomadic Himba Tribe are extremely susceptible to Western influence and have lost a large portion of their land to farmers, engineers, miners and many were displaced during the wars that raged between Namibia and Angola. The dwindling number of pastoralists that still exist in their natural environment are protected as far as possible by creating a “buffer zone”, or an “educational tribe” where tourists who would like to get a better understanding of the way of the Himba, their lifestyle and their traditions, can do so without interfering with those still living in their natural environment. Visiting the Himba tribe can be a controversial topic that gets discussed at the camp fire, however not so much if the reason for visiting this particular tribe is understood beforehand. The income that this specific tribe generates from the visits goes towards the education of orphaned Himba children and assists the tribe in giving them a chance to learn about their own culture and heritage. There is a market at the end of your visit, this is a way for the women to establish a small income, used for their own private expenses, and it is up to you whether you’d like to purchase anything or not. Continue to your camp for the night and prepare for two magical days of game viewing in Etosha National Park. (BLD)
Activity Package: Himba Tribe Visit.
Day 10 - Etosha National Park
Rising early this morning you will make the short drive to the Etosha National Park. Etosha is the venue for some of the most unique game viewing experiences in Africa. Today you will explore the edges of Etosha Pan in search of the abundant wildlife that occurs in the park. The truck offers an elevated platform and you will spend some time at the many waterholes dotted throughout the park. (BLD)
Included Highlight: Afternoon game drive in Nomad truck.
Day 11 - Etosha National Park
Your second day in Etosha allows another full day to continue your exploration of the park. No day on safari is ever the same and the suspense before that special sighting is the motivation that keeps your eyes wide open. You will exit the park in the late afternoon and make your way to your accommodation outside the park. (BLD)
Included Highlight: Full day game drive in Nomad truck.
Day 12 - Windhoek
Rise early and take aim for Windhoek, the capital city of Namibia. Today you will make a brief stop at the craft markets of Okahandja before arriving in Windhoek in the afternoon. Take a short walk through the city centre and have the opportunity to view some its better known landmarks. Tonight you have the chance to eat at Windhoek’s most famous eatery, Joe’s Beer House has gained an international reputation for its venison dishes and quirky atmosphere. (BL)
Included Highlight: Craft market stop enroute, walk through Windhoek with your guide.
Optional Activity: Dinner.
Day 13 - Botswana - Ghanzi
Today you will travel east and make your way to neighbouring Botswana and the Kalahari Desert. Starkly different to the Namib Desert after which Namibia is named, the Kalahari is no less dramatic and covers over 900 000 square kilometres. This afternoon there is an option of a guided walk with your San hosts, this is an opportunity to learn more about the San culture and interaction with their Desert environment. The San people have long been associated with this harsh environment and tonight you will enjoy a dance evening that provides an insight into their culture of song, dance and story-telling. (BLD)
Included Highlight: San Tribal dance in evening.
Day 14 - Okavango Delta
This morning you will rise early, heading towards Maun and the Okavango Delta. On arrival in Maun this afternoon, we transfer by 4X4 to your waterside camp where you will spend the next 2 nights in these tranquil surrounds. This unique and unusual ecosystem sees the annual flood waters of the Okavango River fan out into the sands of the Kalahari Basin. The seasonality of the flood waters lends the Delta its ever changing character. While water levels may fluctuate the tranquillity of this wilderness area remains constant. (BLD)
Activity Package: Okavango Delta Excursion.
Day 15 - Okavango Delta
While the programme of activities is flexible to accommodate the seasonal changes, you will have the opportunity to enjoy a traditional mokoro ride and natures walks. The Okavango Delta is not only a natural wonder, but represents one of the last great wilderness areas in the world today. (BLD)
Activity Package: Okavango Delta Excursion.
Day 16 - Maun
Leaving the Delta behind, this morning you will make your way to the outback town of Maun where you will spend the night. This afternoon you may have the opportunity to participate in an optional scenic flight over the Okavango Delta (weather permitting and at own expense). (BLD)
Optional Activity: Scenic flight over the Okavango Delta.
Day 17 - Nata
Your journey today takes you across the northern reaches of the Makgadigadi Pans, the road to Nata is lined with majestic examples of the iconic Baobab tree. While you pause to experience a finger of the pan on your journey from Maun, those who would like to can join on an optional excursion to the Pans this afternoon. (BLD)
Day 18 - Chobe National Park
Rise early this morning as you continue travelling north to your camp on the banks of the Chobe River. This afternoon is set aside for exploring the Chobe National Park. Begin your exploration in 4X4 vehicles, which allows an up close and personal experience with the many elephants that frequent the river in the afternoons. The afternoon ends with a leisurely boat cruise and a meal served around the campfire. (BLD)
Activity Package: Chobe National Park boat cruise and Chobe National Park game drive.
Day 19 - Victoria Falls
With the memories of your wildlife encounters firmly etched in your minds, you will cross the border in Zimbabwe this morning and travel the short distance to Victoria Falls. Visit the spectacular Victoria Falls, also known by the local name of “Mosi-oa Tunya” (the smoke that thunders). While much of today is dedicated to viewing the mighty Zambezi River as it drops into the Batoka Gorge below, the bustling adventure town of Victoria Falls also offers a range of optional activities for those wanting a dose of adrenaline in the afternoon. For the more relaxed traveller there are craft markets and coffee shops on offer as well. Tonight you will enjoy an optional dinner out (at own expense), your guide will assist you to decide on the many options available. (B)
Activity Package: Victoria Falls National Park Entry.
Optional Activity: Dinner.
Day 20 - End of the Cape Town to Victoria Falls Overland Tour
With the many activities on offer in Victoria Falls, today is the perfect day for the adventure that most suits your style. Whether rafting the mighty Zambezi River or enjoying a flight over the Falls, this is your day to enjoy the many attractions on offer in Victoria Falls (at own expense). (B)
Optional Activity: Zambezi sunset cruise, bungee jump, helicopter flights and white water rafting.
Dates and Pricing
Prices shown are per person based on twin share. Seasonal supplements and minimum night requirement may apply. Solo traveller and extra night prices available on request. Luggage restrictions may apply. International flights not included.
Over 4 weeks 'safari' in Africa
Over 4 weeks 'safari' in Africa, all planned and booked with Bench's help, and not a glitch. Apparently, this is pretty unusual for anything in Africa! Their knowledge and expertise in providing an appropriate itinerary to match our needs (animals and scenery, not civilization) ,and in setting the appropriate expectations for our holiday, made for a very smooth and extremely enjoyable experience. There were 4 of us travelling in a group, which turned out to be optimal for virtually all aspects of the journey through Botswana, Zambia, Tanzania and Kenya (with a small break to finish in Zanzibar). The accommodation was perfect for our needs, well chosen to optimise our time in each location, with daily excursions focused on what we wanted to see. Thoroughly recommend.G&R Destination: Botswana