Classic South Africa 2021
14 nights. January 2021 - November 2022. From £2209.00.
The whole world in a country
Stunning sights, Big Five game safaris, the Garden Route, the Cape Winelands and beautiful Cape Town. Discover extraordinary, surprising, incredibly varied and totally absorbing South Africa on this tremendous value, hugely exciting escorted tour. Encounter the traditions and cultures of an ancient people before discovering some truly awe-inspiring scenery en route to the famous Kruger National Park to search for ‘Big Five’ game. Visit tiny Swaziland and the Zulu War battlegrounds, before flying to friendly Port Elizabeth and the exquisite ‘Garden Route’. The verdant Winelands and the glorious Cape complete an unforgettable holiday.
What's Included14 nights’ carefully chosen bed and breakfast accommodation, plus two nights on the aircraft
Three lunches and dinner on four nights
Outbound flight to Johannesburg, an internal flight between Johannesburg and Port Elizabeth, and returning from Cape Town via Johannesburg
Coach travel and transfers throughout
Fully escorted by a friendly, experienced tour manager
Holiday HighlightsExperience the colourful traditions of the Lesedi Cultural Village
Visit the Apartheid Museum
Discover stunning scenery on the panoramic route including famous God’s Window
Enjoy a full day’s Game Drive in the Kruger National Park
Visit tiny Swaziland
Learn about the battles of Isandlwana and Rorke’s Drift
Fly from Johannesburg to ‘Friendly City’ Port Elizabeth
Journey on the beautiful Garden Route to Knysna
See the extraordinary Cango Caves and visit an Ostrich Farm
Stay in the heart of the scenic Winelands
Enjoy a wine-tasting tour
Journey through the Cape to enjoy three days in Cape Town
PLEASE NOTE: Price is per person and based on two people sharing a twin/double room. Single room supplements and upgrades are not included.
Day 1Fly south to Johannesburg.
Day 2Fly to Johannesburg and upon arrival meet your tour manager and transfer to the Lesedi Cultural Village, for a two-night stay in traditional surroundings – with rooms with modern conveniences – in the heart of the World Heritage Site of the Cradle of Humankind. Enjoy dinner and your first night under the African sky. This evening, enjoy the hospitality of your Lesedi hosts, Zulu, Xhosa, Pedi, Basotho and Ndebele tribes-people who will introduce their cultures, show you their homes and demonstrate traditional music and dancing.
Day 3The 28-acre Lilliesleaf farmstead served as the headquarters of the African National Congress and Umkhonto we Sizwe (the ‘Spear of the Nation’) until a security police raid in 1963, which led to the trial and imprisonment of the organisations’ leaders, including Nelson Mandela. Visits to the awardwinning site and Johannesburg’s moving Apartheid Museum will provide the historical background to today’s democratic South Africa. Return to Lesedi for a second evening.
Day 4Following an early breakfast, bid farewell to Lesedi and journey into Mpumalanga, the awe-inspiring ‘Land of the Rising Sun’ bordered by the vast Kruger National Park. Journey via the famous Panorama Route, one of Africa’s most scenic drives, with highlights including preserved ‘gold rush’ town Pilgrim’s Rest, and mountain passes overlooking Blyde River Canyon. Gaze in wonder at the view from ‘God’s Window’, and take in the strange rock formations of the ‘Three Rondavels’ and the colourful sandstone outcrops of ‘Bourke’s Luck Potholes’. Arrive at the overnight hotel close to the Kruger Park, in time for a dip in the pool before dinner.
Day 5Begin the day early and drive the 15 minutes to Africa’s oldest wildlife conservation area, home to the world’s greatest concentration of wildlife species in their natural habitat. Enjoy a full-day game drive, with a packed picnic breakfast and the chance to buy lunch at a rest-stop, and from your opentopped vehicle and with luck you might encounter impala, wildebeest, giraffe and zebra, and the ‘Big Five’ of lion, rhino, elephant, leopard and buffalo. Following the drive, exit the Park and drive to the nearby Unyati Safari Lodge for a two-night stay.
Day 6Enjoy the chance to rest and relax after the past few days’ adventure, perhaps taking a dip in the pool or simply enjoying the sunshine. Optional activities will include a bush walk on a private reserve, a sunset nature drive or even a return into the Kruger Park.
Day 7Today you’ll cross the border into the tiny Kingdom of Swaziland, a former British Protectorate still boasting a colonial feel with traditional heritage, and the friendly, warm Swazi welcome for visitors. En-route, you’ll stop at curio shops and cultural centres, before continuing on into Kwazulu-Natal and an overnight stay at a wonderful hot springs resort. Enjoy a therapeutic soak before dinner.
Day 8Join a specialist battlefields guide who will introduce you to the tumultuous history of the Zulu Wars, and to the battlefields of Isandlwana and, most famously, Rorke’s Drift, the latter immortalised in the 1964 movie Zulu. A fascinating day includes lunch, before you head to the hotel in time for dinner.
Day 9An early start this morning sees you return to Johannesburg airport and a flight south to bustling, friendly Port Elizabeth’. Upon arrival, meet your tour manager for the next few days and transfer to your overnight hotel. A hugely popular beach-resort, modern ‘P E’ still offers glimpses of Victorian grandeur, with plenty of options should you wish to dine out this evening.
Day 10Begin your journey along the famously scenic Garden Route to Knysna, pausing at the Storms River Bridge, overlooking the verdant Tsitsikamma forest, and perhaps dipping your toes in the Indian Ocean at colourful Plettenberg Bay. Knynsa, your base for the next two nights, brims with seaside character and charm. Take an optional cruise across the lagoon to the Featherbed Nature Reserve, perhaps drive to Western Head for spectacular views and enjoy dinner at a wide choice of restaurants.
Day 11This morning, visit the world-renowned Cango Caves, with their stalactites and stalagmites, formed over millions of years. You’ll then head to Oudtshoorn, the ‘Ostrich Capital of the World’, in the heart of the ‘Little Karoo’ plain. The world’s strangest, largest and often most valuable bird has been farmed here for 130 years, first for its plumage and more recently for its high-protein, low-cholesterol meat. Enjoy a taste at an included lunch, after which you’ll return to Knysna for a second evening.
Day 12Bid farewell to Knysna and head along the Garden Route to the Atlantic coast town of Hermanus, a famed whalewatching centre from July to November. Pause at Stony Point for a glimpse of its penguin colony, before heading into the beautiful, verdant Cape Winelands region, for an overnight stay in a hotel overlooking the Stellenbosch mountains.
Day 13Enjoy today’s tour of rolling vineyard-covered hills and valleys dotted with villages built in ‘Cape Dutch’, Edwardian and Art-Deco styles. After exploring Stellenbosch, you’ll call at Franschhoek, the culinary capital of the Western Cape, and scenic Paarl, at the foot of a towering granite outcrop. During the tour, enjoy a tasting and the opportunity to purchase some wines, before you make the unforgettable journey across the Western Cape to Cape Town, one of the world’s most beautifully located cities, for a last three-night stay. Enjoy a first evening, perhaps enjoying the delights of the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, with its complex of shops, theatres, bars and restaurants.
Day 14On a last touring day, weather permitting, take the Chapman’s Peak Drive, one of the world’s most thrilling coastal roads, into the Cape Point Peninsula. See treacherous Cape Point, in the Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve, Boulders Beach, with its colony of Jackass penguins, and after a lunch stop in Simon’s Town, overlooking False Bay, make the journey back into Cape Town and a second evening.
Day 15Today is free to rest and relax and enjoy the city, perhaps wandering through the historic Bo-Kaap district of Dutch colonial houses, strolling through the horticultural paradise of The Company’s Gardens, catching a catamaran to infamous Robben Island, former ‘home’ to Nelson Mandela, or making an unforgettable ascent of Table Mountain, taking in the panorama from a rotating cable car as it climbs to the summit, with its stupendous views of the city and beyond. Enjoy a last evening in Cape Town.
Day 16Make the most of your last day in Cape Town, before transferring this afternoon to the airport and the return overnight flight.
Day 16Arrival back in the UK, at the end of a truly wonderful South African experience. Back to top
Itinerary changesOccasionally, for operational reasons, we may have to change the order of the excursions on your holiday. The final day-by-day itinerary will be confirmed on your Final Travel Documents, which you will receive approximately three weeks prior to your departure.
Hotel transfer timesThe transfer time from the airport to your hotel is approximately one hour.
Passports and visasA visa is not required for UK citizens travelling to South Africa, but your passport must be valid for six months beyond the date of entry to the country and have two adjacent blank pages. Special entry rules apply for children under 18 years.
Foreign Office Travel AdviceVisit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice to find out the latest Foreign And Commonwealth Office travel advice for your holiday destination, as well as information about passports and visas.
Luggage allowanceYou are permitted to take one suitcase per person on the aircraft, which should not exceed 23kg.
Special requirementsIf you have notified us of any special requirements, please check that they have been noted and acknowledged. This is especially important with any dietary needs you may have.
Disabled accessThe majority of our tours involve a certain amount of walking, including a short walk from the coach stop to the town, attraction or venue you're visiting. If you are bringing a wheelchair, please let us know at the time of booking so that appropriate arrangements can be made. In many developing countries access is sometimes not as easy as at home. Should you have walking difficulties, getting around monuments and attractions may be harder and, in some cases, impossible. Should you have any concerns whatsoever please do contact us prior to travel.
Travel vaccinationsRequirements and advice can vary over time, and from person to person, so please contact your GP about eight weeks before your trip to check whether you need any vaccinations or any other preventive measures.
Changes to your hotelsShould circumstances require, we reserve the right to accommodate you in alternative hotels, of a similar standard, nearby. Full details of your hotels will be sent with your Final Travel Documents. Back to top