Highlights of Africa
Group Size: 2 - 18 passengers
Departs: Scheduled departures throughout the year
Combining two of Bench Africa’s most popular scheduled tours allows guests to experience the Highlights of Africa. An all-encompassing adventure to Kenya and Tanzania visits the spectacular Serengeti National Park, the world famous Masai Mara, the breathtaking Ngorongoro Crater and Amboseli National Park, standing in the shadow of Mount Kilimanjaro. Continuing to South Africa explore the highlights of this magnificent country including a safari experience in Kruger National Park, travelling the spectacular coastline along the Garden Route and spending time in the ‘Mother City’, Cape Town. Finishing at the mighty Victoria Falls, this 29 day tour offers the very best of East and Southern Africa.
Day 1 - Nairobi
On arrival at Nairobi International Airport you will be met and transferred to your hotel.
Tamarind Tree Hotel is ideally located just 5 kms to the southwest of Nairobi within the spacious Carnivore grounds and its iconic Carnivore Restaurant. The hotel offers easy access to all parts of the city, its national park, as well as to the country’s many diverse attractions via the neighbouring Wilson Airport and Southern Bypass. The nearby Langata and Karen suburbs are among the liveliest and most popular in Nairobi with world-class shopping malls and excellent restaurants.
Day 2 - Arusha
This morning after breakfast you will be met and transferred to Nairobi Airport for your onward flight to Kilimanjaro, in Tanzania. (B)
Flight from Nairobi to Kilimanjaro – Not included in costing.
On arrival at Kilimanjaro Airport you will be met and transferred to your hotel in Arusha (approximately 48 KM / 1 hour).
Situated at the foothills of Mount Meru in the city of Arusha, Tanzania, the Mount Meru Hotel lies on 9 acres of lush landscape, surrounded by some of Africa’s most breath-taking vistas, rich with a diverse array of wildlife, etched against the fertile slopes of this beautiful mountain. Give your imagination wings as you sit at the mountain’s feet, and listen as it reveals stories it has kept hidden for centuries.
Tanzanian warmth and kindness is renowned all over the world and the opportunity to prove this fact much more than mere legend is an exhilarating opportunity to all at this pinnacle of splendour, and our home, the Mount Meru Hotel.
Day 3 - Ngorongoro Crater
Enjoy your morning at leisure. After lunch depart by road and drive through the Ngorongoro Highlands to your lodge in Karatu, located just outside the Ngorongoro Conservation Area (approximately 175 KM / 3.5 hours). (BLD)
Located in the Ngorongoro Highlands, the farm is only a short distance from the Ngorongoro National Park entry gate. 52 spacious chalets are built in the style of an old colonial farm, rustically decorated with local materials, complete with en-suite bathroom. Additional facilities include a swimming pool, outdoor deck, two dining areas and massage facility. The 500 acre working farm on the slopes of the crater features a six acre organic vegetable garden which not only supplies the lodge, but many other lodges and mobile camp operations throughout northern Tanzania. Enjoy fresh roasted coffee from the 15 acre plantation.
Day 4 - Ngorongoro Crater
Enjoy breakfast before descending over 600m down to the Ngorongoro Crater floor. Covering over 250 sq km of land, the Ngorongoro Crater is home to the rare black rhino, lion, elephant, cheetah and great herds of buffalo, antelope and wildebeest, and is one of Africa’s most unbelievable landscapes. Explore the forest and lake areas where you may see flamingos and open savannah. A picnic lunch will be served in the crater, before driving back late afternoon to Ngorongoro Farm House for dinner and overnight. (BLD)
Day 5 - Serengeti National Park
After breakfast we travel to Ol’Duvai Gorge, the site of Louis and Mary Leakey’s renowned archaeological discoveries. Their findings include some of man’s earliest known ancestral remains. Continue on to Tanzania’s abundant Serengeti National Park in time for lunch. This enormous park supports every variety of animal imaginable – from large predators to the smaller herbivores they prey on. Enjoy an afternoon safari in the Serengeti National Park and overnight at the Serengeti Sopa Lodge (approximately 200 KM / 4 hours). (BLD)
Located on the edge of the escarpment overlooking the plains of the south-western Serengeti National Park, home too many thousands of wild and rare animals, Serengeti Sopa Lodge lies within an area of outstanding natural beauty. An oasis of cool relaxation from the equatorial sun. The lodge allows its guests to experience magnificent sights and enjoy interaction with the land and animals difficult to find elsewhere, whilst at the same time enjoying the highest level of cuisine and hospitality. The lodge has 69 standard rooms, all with 2 queen size beds, carpeted, and tastefully furnished with local fabrics and pictures.
Day 6 - Serengeti National Park
Experience the Serengeti National Park in full colour and sound during an entire day spent on game drives through the park (picnic lunch included). (BLD)
Day 7 - Lake Manyara National Park
After breakfast depart for Lake Manyara, a mineral lake in the basin of Africa’s Great Rift Valley. Lunch is taken at Kirurumu Tented Lodge, followed by an afternoon game drive in the park, the home of the so-called ‘tree-climbing lions’. Apart from the varied types of landscape including forest, swamp and savannah, Lake Manyara National Park supports a large variety of animals including giraffe, zebra, elephant, hippos, monkeys and a large variety of birdlife (approximately 225 KM / 5 hours). (BLD)
Kirurumu Manyara Lodge is located on the edge of Lake Manyara National Park about a 30 minute drive from Manyara Airstrip and about 2 hours from Arusha. In total there are 27 tented rooms, 2 honeymoon suites and 2 family cottages all of which are tented and raised slightly off the ground with a wooden decking, of which each has an amazing view of the Great Rift Valley of Lake Manyara National Park.
Day 8 - Elerai Conservancy
After breakfast depart Lake Manyara for Arusha and continue to Tarakea for border crossing into Kenya and on to Amboseli (approximately 355 KM / 7 hours). (BLD)
Elerai Camp is located in a quiet, unspoilt, unique setting on a 5,000 acres private conservation area 12kms south east of Amboseli National Park at the foot of Africa’s largest mountain, Mt Kilimanjaro. The camp looks over Amboseli National Park and Mt Kilimanjaro, giving you what is arguably the best location of any camp in the area.
The camp offers 12 tents and 5 suites. Each tent has its own en-suite bathroom with solar hot showers and a toilet with a view. Raised cedar wood floors, acacia poles and makuti (thatch) roofing complement the surrounding environment. Large balconies with relaxing day beds combine to offer the perfect place to lie as you take in the ambiance when relaxing.
The elegantly furnished suite rooms have large sliding doors that open out onto your own private veranda overlooking the plains below and Amboseli National Park. Elephants, giraffe’s and zebra are seen most days from the comfort of your room. Designed using natural rock and acacia wood, the bathrooms have their own naturally crafted bathtub and shower which is unique to Elerai.
Day 9 - Amboseli National Park
Following an early breakfast, depart on a full day game drive in Amboseli National Park. Enjoy a picnic lunch in the Park before returning late afternoon to Elerai Camp for dinner and overnight. (BLD)
Day 10 - Lake Naivasha
After breakfast, depart Elerai Camp and continue to Lake Naivasha, where you will arrive at your lodge in time for lunch. This afternoon is at leisure (approximately 350 KM / 6.5 hours). (BLD)
Set in one hundred and fifty acres of grassland studded with Acacia bushes and trees, the resort is not only home to the resident giraffe, waterbuck and both vervet and colobus monkeys, but it is also a night stop for the hippos when they leave the lake every night to come and trim the grass on our expansive lawns. Lake Naivasha Sopa Lodge has 21 cottages built in a crescent shape, each has 4 rooms, 2 on the ground and 2 at the top, which totals to 84 rooms.
Day 11 - Masai Mara Game Reserve
After breakfast, depart Lake Naivasha past the extinct Volcano of Mt Longonot and Suswa, into the homelands of Kenya’s Masai. The Masai Mara Game Reserve constitutes the northern stretch of the Serengeti and has the richest concentration of animals in Kenya (approximately 250 KM / 5 hours). (BLD)
Sarova Mara Game Camp is located in the heart of the Masai Mara Game Reserve in South West Kenya. It is 260 km from Nairobi which is an hour flight from Nairobi, 20-minute drive from the airstrip and a 5.5 hours drive from Nairobi on the new tarmac road. It is set on an elevation surrounded by two streams.
The Camp is uniquely laid out over the sprawling grounds that include rolling manicured greens, a virtual mini forest of indigenous shrubs and exotic trees, a large pond stocked with fish, mini bird sanctuary and an authentic Masai village adjoining the camp. The camp includes 20 club tents, 51 standard tents, 2 family tents, a main restaurant, bar and many bush dining options. The free swimming pool has its own pool bar..
Day 12 - Masai Mara Game Reserve
Today you will get to see the real Kenya as you enjoy a full day game drive through the Masai Mara Game Reserve, searching for the ‘Big Five’ (lion, leopard, rhino, elephant, buffalo), with a break for lunch back at the camp. (BLD)
Day 13 - Lake Nakuru National Park
Today you will travel to Kenya’s vibrant Lake Nakuru National Park. The park also boasts a good number of rhinos as well as leopard and lion. Lunch is taken at the lodge, followed by an afternoon game drive in the park (approximately 350 KM / 8 hours). (BLD)
Sarova Lion Hill Game Lodge is nestled along the Lion Hill overlooking the spectacular flamingo pink rimmed Lake Nakuru. Its location affords panoramic views of the lake and the picturesque Lake Nakuru National Park. A short two-hour drive from Nairobi, Sarova Lion Hill Game Lodge is a favourite with residents and visitors to Kenya.
Sarova Lion Hill Game Lodge is cleverly laid out in such a way that most rooms and sitting areas afford stunning views of the lake and the park. The Lodge incorporates natural landscaping with tall acacia trees, winding walkways and greens dotted with bird feeds.
Day 14 – Johannesburg
Enjoy a final game drive before driving to Nairobi for lunch. Later you will transfer to Nairobi Airport for your flight to Johannesburg, in South Africa (approximately 184 KM / 3 hours). (BL)
Flight from Nairobi to Johannesburg – Not included in costing.
On arrival you will be met and transferred to your hotel.
Situated in Sandton and escaping the conventional modern high rises, this country style hotel offers a heritage experience. With a choice of restaurants for dining and a pool and gym the hotel is located within walking distance to many of the features of Sandton and offers a complimentary shuttle.
Day 15 – Mpumalanga
Depart Johannesburg after breakfast and head for Pretoria, South Africa’s capital city, for a short orientation tour, before continuing to the Mpumalanga Province, known as “Paradise Country”. Dropping several hundred feet into the lush subtropical region of the Lowveld, you travel via the historic towns of Dullstroom and Lydenburg. After traversing the famous Long Tom Pass, you travel via Sabie and arrive late afternoon into Hazyview, the safari hub of the Kruger National Park. (B)
Perry’s Bridge Hollow is set in beautiful grounds just minutes from Kruger National Park and close to the Panorama Route – a dramatically scenic region home to highlights such as Blyde River Canyon, Pilgrim’s Rest, God’s Window and Bourke’s Luck Potholes. Perry’s Bridge Hollow is a delightful stop-over or holiday destination with something of interest to suit every kind of traveller, both young and old. The 31 spacious rooms offer relaxed, yet sophisticated accommodation in a beautiful indigenous garden setting. The colonial-styled custom furnished, air-conditioned rooms each feature satellite television, indoor and outdoor showers, minisafes, tea and coffee making facilities, mini-ridges and private patios with Lowveld vistas. Time spent at the swimming pool in this beautiful garden setting is bound to leave you feeling refreshed and revived.
Day 16 – Mpumalanga
After an early morning breakfast, you will drive along the spectacular “Panorama Route”, offering views of amazing scenery including the 26 kilometre-long Blyde River Canyon (home to the Three Rondavels), Bourke’s Luck Potholes’ and historic God’s Window, a breathtaking view (weather permitting) of the edge of the escarpment taking in the Kruger National Park. (B)
You arrive back in Hazyview in the late afternoon, where the remainder of the day is at leisure to relax or join an afternoon game experience (optional and for own account).
Day 17 – Mpumalanga
The day begins with early morning coffee or tea, followed by a thrilling open vehicle safari through Kruger National Park with pre-packed breakfast. Kruger is one of the world’s greatest national parks, home to a stunning array of wildlife. Search for the ‘Big Five’ (lion, leopard, rhino, elephant, buffalo) as well as prolific birdlife and numerous other game. The afternoon is at leisure at your hotel. Late afternoon open vehicle game drives are available (optional and at own expense). (B)
Day 18 – Eswatini (Swaziland)
This morning you travel to Eswatini (formerly Swaziland), an independent Kingdom within the borders of South Africa, known for its lovely scenery, crafts and colourful indigenous culture. An interactive cultural experience introduces us to the charming people of Eswatini (Swaziland) and their traditions. You travel via the capital city, Mbabane, and on to the beautiful Ezulwini Valley for overnight. (BLD)
Set in a beautiful secure estate with stunning views of the Royal Mdzimba Mountains, the gold and browns of the African Savannah are echoed throughout the Villas with each room designed to make the most of the African sunlight and views.
Guests have a choice of lounges and outdoor venues in which to relax and soak up the best of Africa. Whether you prefer the welcoming pool terrace or the more formal lounge, you may be forgiven for being reluctant to ever leave this haven of elegance.
Located just 10 minutes from the capital Mbabane, the Villas are well positioned close to a range of attractions and activities.
Day 19 – Zululand
After breakfast you will continue south through Eswatini (Swaziland), before re-entering South Africa. Travel into Zululand, passing traditional round huts and endless vistas. There is an option to enjoy an afternoon open vehicle safari (optional and at own expense) in the Hluhluwe-Umfolozi Game Reserve, which contains an immense diversity of fauna and flora and is particularly famous for its conservation of black and white rhino. (B)
Set on the magnificent Elephant Coast, you’ll get to experience spectacular accommodation near South Africa’s oldest Game Reserve, the 3-star ANEW Hotel Hluhluwe – the ultimate South African holiday destination.
The Idyllic African Centerpiece is nestled between the Hluhluwe Game Reserve – home to the Big Five, and the Greater St. Lucia Wetland Park, a world heritage site. Here you will experience the wild nature of Africa, rejoice in the luxury and revel in the friendly warmth of one of Africa’s most welcoming hotels.
Day 20 – Durban
This morning you will join a cruise on Lake St Lucia (depending on favourable weather conditions) before departing for Durban. Your journey takes you past traditional Zulu Kraals, Eucalyptus plantations and sugar cane fields. You arrive early afternoon and the remainder of the day is at leisure to enjoy the golden beaches of the Indian Ocean. (B)
Day 21 – Knysna
After breakfast, transfer to Durban Airport for your flight to Port Elizabeth (Flight cost not included in tour cost), where you will be met by your representative and once everyone has arrived, you set off to explore the magnificent beauty of the indigenous Tsitsikamma Forest. Visit the spectacularly beautiful Tsitsikamma National Park and Storms River Mouth (weather permitting). You will arrive at your hotel in Knysna, known as the oyster box of South Africa, nestling on the banks of a beautiful lagoon in the heart of the Garden Route.(BD)
Located in the centre of the quaint Garden Route town of Knysna, the Rex Hotel is a stylishly modern property offering upmarket apartments. A fusion of contemporary and classic décor, the 30 rooms are well-appointed for guest comfort and include a range of configurations from studios to two-bedroom apartments. With the exception of the 5 standard rooms, all have fully-equipped kitchenettes and balconies. Central areas are built around a courtyard and feature a lounge, trendy restaurant and bar. Surrounded by town life and conveniently situated, the Rex Hotel offers easy access to Knysna’s scenic attractions and the bohemian boutiques and cafés which give this town a certain charming appeal.
Day 22 – Knysna
After a leisurely breakfast you will enjoy a lagoon cruise to the Featherbed Nature Reserve (weather permitting), where you can take a trailer ride to the top of the Western Head to enjoy panoramic views of the town and lagoon, returning for lunch. The afternoon is at leisure to further explore this charming town set around a natural harbour lagoon. (BL)
Day 23 – Oudtshoorn
Travel through the Outeniqua Pass to Oudtshoorn, known as the “ostrich capital” and the centre of the world’s Ostrich farming industry. You will visit an Ostrich Farm for a guided tour and light lunch, before taking a tour of the spectacular limestone caverns of the Cango Caves, one of the world’s great natural wonders, sculpted by nature through the ages. You will arrive at your hotel in the late afternoon, in time to check in and relax before dinner (at own expense). (BL)
Welcome to one of the finest small luxury establishments in South Africa, and the best choice for your stay in Oudtshoorn. Hlangana Lodge is located 1km from the Oudtshoorn town centre and within walking distance from well-known restaurants such as Jemima’s, Bello Cibo and La Dolce Vita.
Day 24 – Cape Town
There is an option (for own account and subject to availability) to enjoy an early morning meerkat safari. Witness these incredible wild habituated creatures emerging out of their burrows, in time to soak up the sun before they head about their daily activities (weather permitting). After this thrilling experience, head back for a delicious breakfast. After breakfast, the journey continues through the ‘Little Karoo’ to Barrydale, where you will have the opportunity to visit a local farm school, interact with the children and teachers, spending time with them in the classroom learning more about the local farming community, before travelling to Montagu, a picturesque and historic spa town (the school visit is subject to the school being open). Continue straight through to Cape Town, spectacularly set at the foot of Table Mountain. (B)
Situated in the exclusive and wind-free suburb of Bantry Bay, the President Hotel is a peaceful haven just a step away from the buzz of Cape Town’s CBD. Experience four star luxury living in the hotel’s 349 rooms and apartments that make up the beautiful Urban Resort in Cape Town. The President Hotels light, airy, and tranquil rooms and apartments combine contemporary sophistication and comfort with spaciousness. Each and every guest room is beautifully appointed with all the luxury facilities you would expect in a world-class hotel. Enjoy endless views across Table Bay and the Atlantic shoreline while Lion’s Head looms magnificently above, whilst relaxing and soaking up the seaside aromas and stunning views of Cape Town’s beachfront.
Day 25 – Cape Town
Enjoy a full day at leisure. Perhaps join a sightseeing tour to Table Mountain (at own expense) or simply explore the city. Although a small city, Cape Town is packed with sightseeing attractions, excellent bars, cafes and restaurants as well as colourful craft markets. Alternatively relax on one of Cape Town’s many pristine beaches. Enjoy an evening of delicious Cape food, captivating theatre and entertaining tales and songs about the people of the Cape. (BD)
Day 26 – Cape Town
Enjoy a full day tour of the Cape Peninsula, offering some of the most spectacular coastal scenery in the world. Drive through Sea Point, the seaside village of Hout Bay (where you can enjoy an optional and at own expense seal island boat cruise) and then on to Cape Point where (by tradition) it is said that the Atlantic and Indian Oceans meet. You will return to Cape Town by way of Simon’s Town, where you visit the Penguin colony at Boulders Beach (entrance fee at own expense), Fish Hoek fishing village and Muizenberg. (B)
Day 27 – Victoria Falls
This morning after breakfast you will be collected from the hotel for a scheduled City Tour – a geographical and cultural extravaganza showing you Cape Town from its historical beginnings to the dazzling, modern city it is today. Table Mountain ticket excluded (as weather permitting). (B)
Please note: This tour will not be going to Table Mountain or Signal Hill during the Christmas/New Year festive season (dates subject to change) due to extreme congestion.
After the tour you will be transferred to Cape Town Airport for your flight to Victoria Falls, in Zimbabwe.
Flight from Cape Town to Victoria Falls – Not included in costing.
On arrival at Victoria Falls Airport you will be met and transferred to Ilala Lodge. This transfer takes approximately 20 minutes, during which time your driver will give you a brief but informative commentary on the area and places of interest.
Offering distinguished accommodation with gracious and secluded ambiance, the décor evokes a bygone era of adventure and discovery. The elegant hotel is close to the Falls and town centre and borders the National Park, so wildlife is often seen on the lawns as well as the spray from the Falls themselves. The lodge offers 52 air-conditioned rooms, plus four suites, all with en-suite bathroom, patio doors opening on to gardens or balcony, overhead fans and satellite TV together with the fabulous Palm Restaurant.
Day 28 – Victoria Falls
Today is free to explore Victoria Falls, one of the Natural Wonders of the World, browse the local markets and to experience the many optional activities on offer (at own expense). (B)
Day 29 – End of Highlights of Africa Tour
This morning after breakfast you will be met at the lodge and transferred to Victoria Falls Airport for your onward flight. (B)
Dates and Pricing
- 12 Jun 23 $16,280 $18,620
- 19 Jun 23 $16,280 $18,620
- 26 Jun 23 $17,475 $20,705
- 03 Jul 23 $17,475 $20,705
- 10 Jul 23 $17,475 $20,705
- 17 Jul 23 $17,475 $20,705
- 24 Jul 23 $17,885 $21,280
- 31 Jul 23 $17,885 $21,280
- 07 Aug 23 $17,885 $21,280
- 14 Aug 23 $17,885 $21,280
- 21 Aug 23 $17,885 $21,280
- 28 Aug 23 $17,885 $21,280
- 04 Sep 23 $17,885 $21,280
- 11 Sep 23 $17,885 $21,280
- 18 Sep 23 $17,885 $21,280
- 25 Sep 23 $17,885 $21,280
- 02 Oct 23 $17,275 $20,295
- 09 Oct 23 $17,275 $20,295
- 16 Oct 23 $17,275 $20,295
- 23 Oct 23 $17,275 $20,295
- 30 Oct 23 $17,275 $20,295
- 06 Nov 23 $17,150 $20,165
- 13 Nov 23 $17,150 $20,165
- 20 Nov 23 $17,150 $20,165
- 27 Nov 23 $17,150 $20,165
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.
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