“John and I have been back for over a month now and when people ask us how our trip to South Africa was we don’t know what to say…how do you tell people that you had a once in a lifetime experience every single day for three weeks…it was beyond description”. L & J, 2012, Vancouver, BC
Imagine exploring glorious Cape Town, hiking in the wine lands around Stellenbosch and Franschhoek, and having dinner around a blazing fire in the boma of a safari camp in Kruger National Park. In South Africa, it’s easy to taste world-class wine, track big game, do some coastal hiking on the Garden Route—all in one stunning trip. Why not top it off, with a beachside finale on the white, pristine beaches of neighbouring Mozambique?
Botswana, Zambia & Victoria Falls
Botswana shows off a different side of Africa. Here, travellers glide through quiet channels in Mekoro, traditional dugout canoes, in the Okavango Delta. They sleep under the stars in the Kalahari Desert and follow Bushman trackers by day. The Moremi and Savute ensure the Big Five. Why not make the final stop Zambia and stand beside the thundering cataracts of Victoria Falls, visit local villages, take an elephant safari, and watch the sun set over the Zambezi River.
Encounter numerous varieties of Lemurs, marvel at pre-historic baobab trees, hike through orchid forests in the clouds, explore colonial hill towns and snorkel along the coast of the Mozambique Channel – all on one island.
Witness the migration of millions of animals across the legendary plains of the Masai Mara and Serengeti, descend into the Ngorongoro Crater with more than 30,000 resident animals, exchange stories of your children with a Samburu tribesman or simply ponder huge flocks of bright pink flamingos on Lake Nakuru. Sleep under canvas in classic safari camps and finish with a few days in a splendid villa on the coast in Lamu with its Arabic architecure and ancient culture.
The history and romance of Stone Town, the pervasive smell of cloves, endless beaches and dhows, pirates and explorers brought on trade winds from the east, a beautiful piece of Arabia perched on the edge of Africa.
Dance under the stars in a Berber camp at the edge of the Sahara; hike the endless pathways of the Atlas Mountains and the ramparts of the ancient coastal city of Mogador; loose yourself in the medina of Marrakech awash with carpets, kilims, and mountains of spices before being mesmerized by a snake charmer. At night retire amid the exotic architecture of small, perfectly restored riads with courtyard fountains and walled gardens.
Rwanda & Uganda
Gorilla tracking in Parc National des Volcans, the Virungas and Bwindi Forest, chimpanzees, hiking through hillside communities, and the source of the Nile discovered. Read more about my trip to Uganda on my blog.
Twice the size of California with only 1.6 m people, Namibia has so much to offer. The fabled Skeleton Coast, Etosha National Park where herds teem around water holes or the Ongava Game Reserve with a chance to see both black and white rhino. Maybe a visit to Twyfelfontein (“doubtful fountain”) one of the most extensive rock-art galleries on the continent with engravings dating back more than 6,000 years or a visit with the semi-nomadic Himba tribe. Sundowners, dinners and stargazing among the sand dunes of Sossusvlei, Namibia will be like nothing you ever imagined and everything more!