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A private Journey through South Africa

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Itinerary Highlights

All local flights included!

3 Nights in Cape Town at Taj Hotel

2 Nights in the Winelands at Leeu House

4 Nights on Safari at andBeyond Ngala Lodge

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Sample Itinerary

Day 1

  • Arrive in Cape Town, South Africa

    Cape Town is one of the world's most beautiful cities and a top international tourist destination. Large numbers of visitor’s flock to Cape Town every year to experience this unique city with its fascinating history, stunning natural beauty, award winning wineries and relaxed lifestyle.

    Arriving into Cape Town you will be met at the airport by your local driver and assistant and transferred to your nearby hotel, the wonderful Taj Cape Town. As you drive toward the city your view from afar will be Table Mountain, one of the most spiritual places on earth with its heart, two oceans and the beautiful city of Cape Town at its feet. Having arrived at the hotel and taken some time to check in and unpack you then have the remainder of your day at leisure.

    Meals Included: None
    • Taj Hotel

Day 2

  • Exploring Cape Town

    Today you have at leisure to explore this wonderful city. If you would prefer, Exeter Safari Company would be happy to coordinate your touring while in this remarkable city (at additional cost).

    A great option for today would see you meet your driver and guide in your hotel lobby and set off on a full day tour of this incredible city. You would visit several of the Cape’s top attractions, from the imposing Castle of Good Hope to the colorful cottages of the Bo Kaap, bustling Green Market Square, the South African Museum, the beautiful Kirstenbosch Gardens and plenty of other unique and important sites. There would be plenty of walking today and so be sure to wear comfortable footwear!

    You would however start your day today with a trip up incredible Table Mountain! Having taken the revolving cable car all the way to the top, over 3000ft above the city, you are rewarded with spectacular views. Here you can take your time and enjoy this unique environment, a multitude of walking trails criss cross the top of the mountain each leading to a view more stunning than the last.

    You would then continue on with your experienced and knowledgeable guide as together you explore and learn all about the City of Cape Town and the central role it played in the creation of this wonderful country.

    Following your day exploring the sights, sounds and tastes of Cape Town you would be escorted back to your hotel where you then have the remainder of your day at leisure.

    Meals Included: Breakfast
    • Taj Hotel

Day 3

  • Exploring Cape Town

    Today you again have the option of either exploring your surroundings independently, or we can arrange your days activities ahead if time (at additional cost).

    Today you could meet your guide and driver in your hotel lobby and embark on a tour of the stunning Cape Peninsula. This tour will take you around the entire Cape peninsula and show you the wonders of Cape Town - from the pristine beaches, to the spectacular sight of Cape Point, where the Atlantic and Indian oceans meet.

    Situated along the Atlantic Seaboard, you will begin with the beaches of Clifton and Camps Bay, both of which have been awarded Blue Flag status. Boasting pristine white sand beaches and beautiful, clear waters these beaches are very popular with locals and visitors alike. You would then continue on to Hout Bay, a small fishing village that is often jokingly referred to as the ‘Republic of Hout Bay’ by Cape Town locals who see the small town as being an entirely separate entity. Here you will find a beautiful beach, delicious fresh seafood, bustling markets and plenty of restaurants that make this suburb a must-visit on any Cape tour.

    You would then continue to Cape Point, a spectacular nature reserve that lies along the coast and is now one of the most famous landmarks in Cape Town, and for good reason. Situated on the very tip of the peninsula, with the Indian Ocean on one side and the Atlantic Ocean on the other, the area spans landscapes as diverse as rugged cliffs, lush fynbos and vast open spaces – no Cape Town tour is complete without a visit to Cape Point.

    You would then make your way back to Cape Town via Simon's Town and its famous penguin colony. Simon's Town is the seat of the South African Navy and boasts a charming coastal town atmosphere and vibrant history. Here you will find a thriving harbor, a navy museum and plenty of other sights including Boulders Beach, one of the few places in the world you can walk among, and swim alongside penguins.

    Following your day of touring you would arrive back at your hotel where you then have the remainder of your evening at leisure.

    Meals Included: Breakfast
    • Taj Hotel

Day 4

  • From Cape Town to the Winelands

    This morning you will enjoy a hearty breakfast before checking out of your hotel and meeting your driver in your hotel lobby. Together you will say goodbye to Cape Town and set off on an incredibly scenic drive as you make your way into the winelands! It is difficult to choose the best feature of the Cape Winelands. The region produces some of the world’s best wines as well as fantastic cheeses and olives, all coupled with a wealth of natural rustic beauty. Around every corner you will find vast estates shaded from the African sunshine by giant oak trees and towering mountains overlooking lush valleys.

    If you were interested, you could incorporate a full day Winery Tour into today’s schedule (at additional cost). On this full day tour, you would travel and explore the Cape Winelands’ most popular route. You would visit the famous and renowned towns of Paarl, Stellenbosch and Franschhoek as you stop in for tastings at some of the region’s best wineries. Look forward to a day filled with fine wines, great food and spectacular scenery! As well as the incredible wines you would sample throughout the day, there are also a number of interesting tastings to enjoy including olives, chocolate, boutique olive oil and world class cheeses.

    Around mid-afternoon you would arrive at your hotel for the night located just off the wonderfully quaint Franschhoek high street. Having checked in and taken some time to soak in your scenic surroundings you then have the remainder of your day today to spend as you wish.

    Step out the front door of your hotel and immerse yourself in the town of Franschhoek, famous for good reason as the ‘Food and Wine Capital of South Africa’. Although the list varies year-to-year, up to 8 of South Africa’s ‘Top 100’ restaurants are based in Franschhoek! Despite its tiny size, the town boasts an incredible range of wine bars, cafes and stylish restaurants with every style of food on offer. From traditional English pub food to classic bistro fare, superb wood-fired pizzas to sumptuous sushi, this gourmet dining town has it all.

    As befits the town’s Huguenot heritage, Franschhoek restaurants frequently feature French cuisine, alongside plenty of traditional and contemporary South African restaurants. Some of the country’s leading chefs create innumerable dishes using only the freshest produce from the valley, complimented by a host of delightful local wines. As well as the wonderful restaurants you will also find a number of art galleries, pottery studios and wine stores.

    Meals Included: Breakfast
    • Leeu House

Day 5

  • Exploring the Winelands

    Today you have at leisure to explore this incredible area independently. Although not what you might expect from a wine region, Franschhoek is home to Africa’s most incredible motor museum. From an 1898 Beeston motor tricycle through to a modern Ferrari Enzo supercar this incredible collection of over 80 vehicles is a must see for any motoring enthusiast. From the Motor Museum you even have the opportunity to hop into one of these vintage motor vehicles and enjoy a short drive through the picturesque winelands where you will be dropped at the adjoining winery.

    Another wonderful option is to catch the famous Franschhoek Wine Tram. The Franschhoek Wine Tram hop-on hop-off tour is one of the best ways to discover the true essence of the Franschhoek Valley – picturesque vineyards, breath-taking scenery, warm hospitality, world-class cuisine, fine wines and a 300-year history. Passengers aboard the hop-on hop-off tour will experience a unique and leisurely way to see the Franschhoek Valley as they journey through rolling vineyards in a vintage style railway tram and open-air tram-bus stopping in at some of South Africa’s oldest and most distinguished wine estates.

    A combination of tram and tram-bus transports passengers around a loop of stops allowing them to hop-off at each stop and experience the activities on offer, be it wine tasting, a cellar tour, lunch or simply a stroll through the vineyards and when they are ready, hop-on to continue the tour. The tour takes passengers right into the heart of the Franschhoek Valley, with a narration focusing on the history of Franschhoek and wine cultivation in the valley and unparalleled views of the valley and vineyards.

    Meals Included: Breakfast
    • Leeu House

Day 6

  • From the Winelands to Kruger National Park

    This morning you will check out of your hotel and enjoy a short transfer back to Cape Town Airport. Here you will board your direct flight that will take you to Hoedspruit Airport. Please note todays flight is included in your program cost. At Hoedspruit Airport you will be met by your guide and together make your way to the Kruger National Park, South Africa's most famous game viewing destination.

    Ngala Private Game Reserve has exclusive traversing rights on 14 700 hectares (36 000 acre) of wilderness land, which means guests can explore the reserve on foot, free from the constraints of roads and vehicles, go on a night drive, or sensitively go off-road enabling you to get closer to wildlife. The private concession shares an unfenced border with Kruger National Park that allows the incredible wildlife of the area to come and go as they please.

    Arriving at the stunning Ngala Lodge you will be shown to your luxury chalets and given an orientation tour of this wonderful property. The Manager of the lodge will explain a few precautions to take during your stay to ensure your safety and wellbeing, as it is worth keeping in keep in mind despite your opulent surroundings you are in the middle of wild Africa! You can then enjoy a late light lunch before enjoying a bit of time at leisure to relax and unpack. In the late afternoon you will enjoy a casual high tea in the main communal area of the lodge before setting off on your first safari drive!

    During your stay at Ngala Safari Lodge you will have the opportunity to join two safari drives each day. One in the early morning and then another that leaves in the late afternoon and returns shortly after dark. Please note you are in no way obligated to join both of these daily drives and if you would prefer to sleep in one morning and simply join the afternoon drive (or vice versa) you are of course welcome to do so. As the lodge is located in the middle of the game reserve you will enjoy fantastic game sightings from anywhere around the property, including the communal areas or even right from your bedroom.

    Returning from the evening game drive you will enjoy a splendid African inspired meal prepared by the lodges talented team of Chefs. After dinner you are welcome to either relax around the communal firepit sipping your choice of beverage as you get to know your fellow travelers or retire to your room in preparation for the next day’s early start.

    Meals Included: Full Board (Including local Beers, Wines, Spirits & Soft Drinks)
    • andBeyond Ngala Lodge

Day 7

  • On Safari in Kruger National Park

    This morning you will wake up just as the sun is rising above the horizon and make your way to the main area of the lodge. Here you will enjoy a selection of coffee, tea, fruit and light pastries before hopping on board your safari vehicle and continuing your exploration of this enormous game reserve.

    Note that on both your morning and evening game drives your guide will find a nice area to stop for a half hour where you will enjoy some light refreshments and a chance to stretch your legs. Arriving back at the lodge mid-morning you will then enjoy a lavish brunch during which you can swap stories about that mornings game drive and decide on the plan for the remainder of the day.

    Please chat with your guide if you have any specific interests that you would like to explore while on Safari. These could include interests such as birding or perhaps ask about the possibility of scheduling a nature walk during which you can get up close and personal with the fauna and flora that surrounds your lodge.

    Meals Included: Full Board (Including local Beers, Wines, Spirits & Soft Drinks)
    • andBeyond Ngala Lodge

Day 8

  • On Safari in Kruger National Park

    Today you have another opportunity to check off any South African animals that have so far remained elusive. In addition to the other many animals you will undoubtedly see, the goal on Safari is always to find the “Big Five”. Throughout much of the early 20th century when hunting was still the main reason international visitors made their way to Africa these five animals were considered the most dangerous animals to hunt and were therefore prized as trophies above all others. Fortunately, times have changed and now most guests who go on Safari want to admire and photograph these incredible animals rather than cause them any harm.

    The “Big Five” are the Elephant, the Rhinoceros, the Leopard, the Lion and the Cape Buffalo and all can be found on the Sabi Sand Game Reserve. Traditionally leopards can often be the most difficult animal to find on Safari as their patterns allow them to blend into the bushveld at a moment’s notice. Often if you do find a leopard they will be up a tree where they have either pulled their kill to keep it away from the prying jaws of the hyenas or simple resting safe in the knowledge they are out of reach of any larger predators.

    Meals Included: Full Board (Including local Beers, Wines, Spirits & Soft Drinks)
    • andBeyond Ngala Lodge

Day 9

  • On Safari in Kruger National Park

    Your last day in Africa to spend however you wish. From safari drives to nature walks, to simply relaxing around the pool or enjoying a massage in your room, enjoy your last day in Africa however you please.

    Meals Included: Full Board (Including local Beers, Wines, Spirits & Soft Drinks)
    • andBeyond Ngala Lodge

Day 10

  • Depart Africa

    This morning you will check out of your luxury lodge and enjoy a short transfer to Ngala Airstrip. Here you will board a flight that will take you back to Johannesburg, stopping on route in Nelspruit. Please note the cost of this flight is included in your program cost.

    Arriving in Johannesburg you will then meet your onward flight home, the cost of which is not included.

    Meals Included: Breakfast

Download The Full Itinerary

Estimated pricing for a private journey through South Africa

Classic Program

Includes more basic accommodation than that mentioned in the Program above: $4,785 per person.

Luxury Program

Includes the accommodation mentioned in the Program above (or equivalent): $5,125 per person 

Premium Program

Includes more luxurious accommodation than that mentioned in the Program above: $8,215 per person. 

Please note the costs of the regional flights required for this itinerary are included, however the cost of the international flights to and from Africa are not. Please let us know if you would like assistance in booking your international airfare.  

Please note due to the bespoke nature of our itineraries combined with profound seasonal variations in accommodation costs and availability the above pricing estimates should be used only as a guide. An exact cost can be provided once exact dates and logistics have been discussed.

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Please tell us your questions about A private Journey through South Africa and we'll be in touch to get the ball rolling!

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Why go through a company such as the Exeter Safari Company?

An African safari is, for many people, a once in a lifetime trip and for that reason you will want to be sure the arrangements are flawless. A safari incorporates many different elements including airport arrival and departure services, transfers, light aircraft flights, the routing to remote lodges and the most knowledgeable local guides. Coordinating all these different services, often throughout multiple countries, languages and currencies can be daunting.

By going through an experienced safari company which has a wealth of local knowledge, local connections and years of experience in the region you can be sure you will be receiving the highest possible level of service before, during and after your travels. At the Exeter Safari Company we work with only the best guides, highest quality lodges at every price point, and the most reliable transportation providers in Africa. Our extensive experience and connections throughout the continent will ensure your trip goes off without a hitch.

In addition, you will enjoy the peace of mind knowing that you have access to 24/7 support both before your departure and during your time in Africa.

What should I wear on safari?

When deciding what clothing to pack for a safari trip your main priority is going to be comfort, coverage, durability and ease of packing. Keep in mind safaris often include light aircraft flights on to which normal hard sided suitcases are not allowed. You will therefore want to pack your clothing and other items into a soft sided duffel style travel bag (no larger than 24 inches long and 15 inches wide) that can be easily stored along with other travelers’ bags in the small luggage compartments on board. Note there is also a strict 15KG (33lbs) weight limit for your luggage.

Regardless of the time of year you are traveling, or the expected temperatures, you will want to be prepared for some cooler occasions. In order to find animals while they are at their most active, safari drives generally take place in the early morning and late afternoon/early evening. You will therefore often be out and about during the cooler parts of the day and this combined with sitting in the back of an open sided safari vehicle means it can get chilly - even in the middle of Summer. Accordingly, you will want to bring one or two light jackets, preferably that can be layered, so when it does start warming up you are able to shed layers and maintain a comfortable temperature.

It is also important where possible to wear long-sleeve shirts and pants to help with both sun and insect protection (fleece is great as insects can’t bite through it). Mosquitoes, Tsetse flies and other small flying insects can be bothersome during certain parts of your safari and preparing for them ahead of time will make your trip that much more pleasant. You will want to avoid bringing dark blue and black clothing as this color is known to attract certain flying insects such as Tsetse flies. You may also want leave behind your favorite white clothing as they can quickly become dirty from the dust in the air and climbing in and out of the safari vehicle. Last you will want to keep in mind you are trying to remain inconspicuous while on safari and so bright colors and loud prints should be avoided. Instead opt for more neutral tones in greens and browns that will help you blend into your surroundings.

When it comes to footwear you will again want to choose an option that covers as much of your bare skin as possible, think hiking boots or closed shoes with long socks rather than flip-flops or sandals. You will also be climbing in and out of vehicles and walking on uneven terrain that could have sharp rocks or thorns and so you will want footwear that is relatively durable. Your safari may include bush walks and so you will want to wear sturdy hiking boots on these occasions. Around the lodge area you will be able to wear more casual and lightweight footwear including flip flops or sandals, assuming you have bug-spray to stop any pesky mosquitoes that may be in the area. While in your rooms you will normally have mosquito nets over the bed area however you may still want to bring some full-length pajamas to ensure you have less skin exposed to any mosquitoes that did manage to sneak in.

When is the best time to travel to Africa?

The short answer is anytime! While there are better and worse times to be on safari throughout the various regions of Africa because the continent is so large and so diverse whenever you are looking to travel there will be a destination that is right for you.

Traditionally, the best time to go on safari is during the dry season that broadly runs from June through October, however this season does vary significantly depending where in Africa you are considering. During the dry season the vegetation is much less dense and because the grass is shorter it is much easier to track and locate wildlife. Additionally, when there is less rainfall there are fewer available water sources for wildlife to gather around. This results in the animals tending to congregate around the same lakes, pans and rivers which again makes for great game viewing (and leads to some interesting herbivore/predator encounters!).

Often during the wet season, also called the green season, when water sources are abundant, the wildlife tends to spread out over an enormous area. Many camps and lodges close during this time of year, often December through February as the dirt tracks that surround the lodges become impassable.

Another aspect to consider, especially if visiting East Africa, is the great migration. Please visit our page that explores this topic at length as it will give you a good idea as to where the migration is located at any particular time of year.

What About Yellow Fever?

Yellow Fever is a disease found in many parts of sub-tropical Africa transmitted into humans through Mosquito bites. As it can be quite a serious illness it is essential you receive a yellow fever vaccination before embarking on a trip to an effected country.

The main safari destinations where Yellow Fever vaccinations are required are Kenya, Tanzania, Zambia, Uganda and Rwanda. Other countries such as South Africa and Botswana require you to arrive with a yellow fever vaccination even if you have only transited through or visited a country where yellow fever exists within the past 6 months (keep in mind many of the countries on this list are in South America).

Check with your Exeter Safari Company expert for the specific requirements regarding the destinations included in your program. It is important to note the Yellow Fever vaccine requires 10 days before it becomes effective and so don’t leave it to the last minute!

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