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South Africa Scheduled Group Safari

Cape, Garden Route & Kruger

11 days, 10 nights | Safari from $6,498 per person
Overview

City, Savanna & Spectacular Coast

Explore South Africa’s many facets, from cosmopolitan Cape Town to the big cats of Kruger National Park, and the rugged coastal paths and gentle prairies that wind along the lush Garden Route. On foot, on bike, in forests, valleys, and towns, South Africa welcomes you as it reveals its legendary treasures.

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Your adventure begins in Cape Town, a modern, multicultural city and designated World Design capital. Explore centuries-old gardens of the Dutch East India Company and take in the exhilarating views from the high plateau of Table Mountain. Easy day trips from the city lead to the vineyards of the Cape Winelands, the penguins of the Cape Peninsula, and the spectacular gardens of Kirstenbosch. Next, you’ll head east along South Africa’s spectacular Indian Ocean coastline, where you can watch whales at Hermanus or explore the breathtaking terrain of the Garden Route. Capping it all off are thrilling days in the wild heart of South Africa, tracking and observing beast and bird among the fenceless expanses of Sabi Sand Game Reserve at the edge of Kruger National Park.

Safari Style: Scheduled Group Safari
Activities: Nature walks, cultural visits, cycling, wine tasting, game drives
Accommodation: Lodges and boutique hotels
Getting Around: 4x4 safari vehicles with guaranteed window seats, Light aircraft
When to Visit: Year-round; Jun–Aug for viewing mammals; Sep–Oct for newborn animals; Jul–Nov for southern right whales Read More
Meeting & Departure Point: Cape Town, South Africa / Johannesburg, South Africa

Tour Highlights:

  • Savor the sophisticated pleasures of Cape Town
  • Track the Big Five while on game drives in Sabi Sand Game Reserve
  • Stroll through dazzling displays of South Africa’s national flower, the protea, at Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens
  • Spot southern right whales and dolphins in the Indian Ocean waters off Hermanus
  • Taste fine South African wines and discover the charms of Cape Dutch architecture in the historic Cape Winelands
  • Experienced, friendly, and knowledgeable guides and service of local representative
  • All meals included; local wine and beer included with dinners
  • Boutique hotels, country lodge, and safari lodge (with private baths) while on tour
  • Airport meet-and-greet service
  • Transportation from the meeting to the departure point
  • Internal flight(s)
  • All park fees and special events as noted in the itinerary
  • The unbeatable and cumulative experience of the CW Safaris staff
  • Guest Rating:

    “Bottom line: a very memorable trip of a lifetime, stretching our experience but easy on our nerves. It is a beautiful and fascinating country we are recommending to all our friends, and we have praise for CW Safaris as well. The guides were congenial, well-informed, interesting, efficient, and flexible. They were good-humored and appeared to have a depth and breadth of knowledge and thinking beyond what would be the basic requirement for a guide simply well trained in traditional tourist sights and activities. Restaurants and accommodations were superb.”
    B. & B. Lindley, Washington, D.C., September 2013

Dates & Prices

Scheduled Group Safari 2015 Pricing

2015 Dates
Per Person Single Supplement
May 25 - Jun 4 $7,198 $1,395
Sep 21 - Oct 1 $7,198 $1,395

*Pricing based on double occupancy. Reserve early for best pricing; prices and dates are subject to change.

Itinerary & Accommodations
Day 1 Cape Town

Upon arrival into Cape Town, our meet-and-greet services usher you from airport to hotel. After settling in, your local guide will introduce you to this remarkable city. Visit a 17th-century water reservoir; the historic Grand Parade lined by the Castle, old Drill Hall, and magnificent City Hall; and enjoy the stunning architecture, murals, and colorful flower market. Your route passes Church Square, the Groote Kerk, and original Slave Lodge on your way to the former Dutch East India Company’s gardens, a green oasis in the middle of town. After noting other highlights, you’ll leave the city center behind and head to the quaint Bo-Kaap area.

Refresh yourself with late-morning tea at the Mount Nelson Hotel, served in the lounge, on the terrace, or in the estate around the garden fountain as you prefer. Then stretch your legs with a hike atop Table Mountain. Rising to nearly 3,300 feet directly from sea level, this lush plateau affords exceptional views.

In the evening, enjoy a welcome dinner at the hotel’s fine dining room or one of the local restaurants within walking distance.

Included: Arrival transfer, city tour, and walk on Table Mountain / breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Day 2 Wine Country

An early departure finds you on your way to the historic towns of Stellenbosch and Franschhoek. Stellenbosch, settled in 1679, is a quaint village dotted with Cape Dutch architecture, small shops, and teahouses. After a brief introduction, you are free to explore on your own.

Then continue to Franschhoek with its picturesque vineyards. For your pleasure: an elegant lunch and wine tasting enhanced by breathtaking panoramas of the Franschhoek Valley. Return to Cape Town in the late afternoon.

Included: Visit to wine country and wine tasting / breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Approximate Travel Time: 2 hours

Day 3 Cape Peninsula

The renowned Cape Peninsula—one of the most dramatic coastal drives in the world—is yours to explore on a full-day tour. Follow the west side of the peninsula down the Atlantic seaboard via Sea Point and the beautiful beaches at Clifton and Camps Bay. Breathtaking views continue on your way to Hout Bay, a quaint village and fishing harbor.

Enjoy lunch in the township, hosted by a local family. Explore the town on an easy bike ride, in support of the Bicycling Empowerment Network (BEN). Then head further down the coast by car to the Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve, home to a startling variety of plant, bird, and animal life. Here, take a walk of special significance as you set foot on what was commonly thought of as the most southerly point of the African continent—the towering headland known as Cape Point. This famous view, where supposedly the Atlantic and Indian oceans meet, can encompass the entire peninsula. As this moderate walk continues, observe the flowers and foliage of the Cape, and perhaps a baboon family or wild buck. Before returning to Cape Town, stop at Simon’s Town, home to a large African penguin colony.

In the evening, enjoy dinner at the hotel or one of the many excellent restaurants nearby.

Included: Township bike tour and exploration of Cape Point on foot / breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Approximate Travel Time: 3 hours

Day 4 Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens

The world is divided into six floral kingdoms, and the Cape Peninsula is one of them. This is in splendid evidence at the Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens. After an introduction to the gardens, explore the natural wonders on your own, or remain with your guide to learn more about some of the 22,000 indigenous plants. The canopy bridge afford an entirely different perspective and the Visitors Center offers a delightful cup of tea in an idyllic setting. To prolong your pleasure, a gourmet picnic lunch will be served in the gardens.

The afternoon is yours to enjoy at leisure exploring the city and waterfront. A trip to Robben Island is a popular option. From the 17th to the 20th centuries, the island served as a place of banishment, isolation, and imprisonment. Today it is a World Heritage site and museum. (To secure a place on the ferry during the busy summer season, you should book early online at www.robben-island.org.za.)

This evening, discover gold in Cape Town! Walk through the Gold of Africa Museum in the historic Martin Melck building into the ancient courtyards of Gold Restaurant for a tasting safari: a set 15-course menu served at your table with cuisines ranging from Cape Town to Timbuktu. You’ll be captivated by the djembe drumming, and the tall, graceful Mali puppets as they dance around your table.

Included: Walking tour of Kirstenbosch Gardens and afternoon at leisure / breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Approximate Travel Time: 2 hours

Day 5 Hermanus

Today you drive approximately two hours to the town of Hermanus on Walker Bay, which is renowned for its whale migration. You may spot a southern right whale in the bay (depending on the season). In the late afternoon you arrive at your next destination, the unique Ocean Eleven. This afternoon, you visit the Fernkloof Nature Reserve. Here a 1½-hour loop trail begins with a 30-minute ascent. As you walk through a large variety of flora, the proximity in which these diverse plants grow is fascinating—a photographer’s dream with Walker Bay as the backdrop. The day ends at a local seafood restaurant.

Included: Land transfer and Fernkloof Reserve / breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Approximate Travel Time: 2 hours

Day 6 Garden Route

Today, set forth on the next leg of your journey. After an early breakfast, you depart on a six-hour drive to the famous coastal Garden Route, passing through the towns of Knysna and Wilderness before arriving at Plettenberg Bay. You stop en route for lunch and a leg stretch. Your destination: a lodge on the edge of a private nature reserve with panoramic views of verdant forests, valleys, and mountains. You have arrived in one of the most beautiful parts of Africa, the Garden Route. Before dinner, indulge in a leisurely stroll on the grounds of your incredible lodge.

Included: Land transfer / breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Approximate Travel Time: 6 hours

Day 7 The Robberg Peninsula

The Robberg Peninsula is a nature reserve and national monument about five miles south of Plettenberg Bay. Its ecology presents a fine example of how plants and animals adapt to the interacting influences of land and sea on this rocky coastline. You are invited to take your choice of three circular routes, from easy to athletic. A full round-trip via the Point takes about four hours, tide permitting.

After your walk, enjoy a picnic lunch in the reserve followed by a visit to Qolweni Township in Plett. Local guides will provide a unique opportunity for you to meet members of the community and learn about their way of life. Qolweni’s Community Development Trust raises vital funds for development projects through walking tours and open-air theater performances.

Relax at day’s end enjoying the many amenities of the lodge before dinner in the elegant candlelit dining room of the lodge’s main house.

Included: Coastal walk and township walking tour / breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Day 8 Lion Sands Game Reserve

The adventure continues as you transfer to Port Elizabeth Airport in time for your flight to Johannesburg for the next portion of your safari. Here, bid your guide farewell as you catch the connecting Federal Air charter flight to the lodge (please note: luggage limited to 44 pounds in a soft bag). You will be met on the airstrip by your driver and transferred to the Lion Sands River Lodge. Upon check-in at the lodge, you will be met by the warm and wonderful staff who will guide and care for you during your stay.

Included: Transfer by air and land / breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Approximate Travel Time: 2 hours by road, 2 short internal flights (max 1 hour each)

Days 9 & 10 Lion Sands Game Reserve

This private game reserve is located in the finest territory of the world-famous Sabi Sands Game Reserve. Forming part of the greater Kruger National Park, the reserve has no fences and the wildlife is able to traverse freely between Lion Sands and the Kruger National Park.

This reserve is home to the “big five” among countless other species of animal, reptile, and bird. Lion Sands is the only reserve in the Sabi Sand that employs a full-time ecologist, responsible for ensuring preservation of the land for generations to come. The reserve is private and exclusive to Lion Sands guests only, to assure you a highly personalized safari experience. You will enjoy the time and flexibility to savor the abundant natural beauty. A typical day includes:

5:30 am: Morning game drive

7:45 am: Coffee & tea in the bush

9:00 am: Breakfast at the lodge

11:00 am: Interpretive bush walk

1:00 pm: Lunch on the wooden viewing deck

2:30 pm: Rest & relaxation: massage and spa at leisure

4:00 pm: Evening game drive with high tea

5:30 pm: Sundowners: cocktails while viewing sunset in the bush

8:00 pm: Dinner by firelight under the African stars

Other optional and included activities: astronomy, bush breakfast, bush dinner, bush walk, game drive, hippo tour, safari lunch, and wildlife lectures.

Included: All safari activities as detailed above / breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Day 11 Johannesburg

Following a morning game drive and breakfast, a midday charter flight takes you—filled with memories of an extraordinary journey—back to Johannesburg in time for your connecting flight home.

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Guides

Our Guides

Guests who travel frequently with CW Safaris know that our guides truly set us apart from other adventure travel companies. All CW Safaris guides are locally based and fluent in English, with exceptional knowledge of the region where you’ll be traveling. Their expertise in wildlife and natural history and their keen, deeply rooted understanding of life in the African bush will ensure your safety, well-being, and enjoyment throughout every safari. You could not be in better hands!

Here is a sampling of our extraordinary guides in South Africa:

Alan Thomas

Alan Thomas

Alan is a Cape Town native who studied a B.Com after finishing school and 2 years in the army. A runner and cyclist, Alan has cycled the Karakoram Highway from Islamabad to Kashgar as well as from Lhasa to Kathmandu via Everest base camp. Having travelled extensively in Europe, Asia, Southern Africa and Australasia to rid himself of wanderlust, he returned to his beloved Table Mountain and the Mother City. Tour guiding seemed a natural progression and for the last 5 years he has concentrated on taking guests around South Africa. When he is not guiding he is a fulltime toy for his little daughters.

Leonard Hoerikwagga hiking tour

Leonard McMillan

Leonard has fantastic experience leading hiking trips on Table Mountain having worked for Table Mountain National Parks for last four years. Having grown up on the Cape Flats in an impoverished environment, it was a life changing for him to participate in a school hike and then later be selected for the Hoerikwaggo guiding programme. He enjoys working in a more personalised environment where clients become friends and will go the extra mile for guests to provide that unforgettable personal service.

Erica Vink

Born in the North Western Cape on a Karoo sheep farm, Erica is an outgoing and energetic guide. She feels that it is a privilege to share the vibrancy and beauty of South Africa with guests and is both passionate and optimistic about the future of her country. Erica is fluent in English, Afrikaans, and German and received her education at the University of Stellenbosch. Her professional experience has ranged widely, from working in the wine lands in Stellenbosch to the medical industry, with many other roles in tourism in between. She is an active member of a local hiking club, a passionate advocate for sustainable tourism, and a volunteer mountain guide for Table Mountain National Park. When not guiding, she enjoys spending time with her spouse and two sons.

Sally de Jager

Sally Petersen

Growing up on a sheep farm in South Africa, Sally was infused with a love of the land, and dreamed of sharing her travel experiences with others. After graduating, she spent a few years traveling and working throughout Europe, Asia, and Africa. She was an “Adventurer of the Year” finalist after cycling from London to Cape Town to raise funds for Survival International. On returning to Cape Town, Sally pursued her dream career and became a qualified Nature and Tour Guide with the Dept. of Environmental Affairs and Tourism. Sally’s passion for her country is infectious and her knowledge, astounding.

Vanessa Nixon

Vanessa got the travel bug from her grandfather, a retired pilot with many exciting African travel tales. To celebrate her 21st birthday, she drove through nine African countries, crossing rivers, mud, snow, sand, mountains, herds of elephants, and baobab forest. She spent the next three years guiding camping safaris all over southern Africa, earning the top credentials that led to her joining CW Safaris. Vanessa loves sharing her travel experiences, including her strong ties to the Kalahari and its Komani bushmen. She believes each safari has a life of its own with unique adventures.

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