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13 Day Deluxe South Africa with Victoria Falls & Chobe River Safari

13 days with Gate 1  Rating: Deluxe

River Cruise Itinerary
DAY 1, Sunday - Depart for South Africa
Depart for Cape Town, South Africa.

DAY 2, Monday - Cape Town
Welcome to South Africa! Arrive in magical Cape Town, the sparkling coastal city. The rest of the day is at leisure to rest, relax and acclimate to your new time zone in this sophisticated city nestled between the Indian and Atlantic Oceans.

DAY 3, Tuesday - Views from Table Mountain, Bo-Kaap Quarter, Festive Welcome Dinner
Join your Tour Manager and fellow travelers for this morning's briefing about the astonishing adventure of South Africa, Victoria Falls, and the Chobe River that awaits you. Our introduction to the city begins as we ascend by aerial cableway to the summit of Table Mountain, iconic symbol of the city. From atop, view the amazing panoramic views of the waterfront, the majestic Hottentots Mountains and the gorgeous Cape Peninsula. On a clear day you can see as far as Robben Island. Then, an exploration of the rich history and cultural sights of Cape Town on a drive past the impressive Castle of Good Hope, the City Hall, St. George's Cathedral, seat of the Anglican Church, the Great Synagogue and Holocaust Center and the lush Company's Gardens adjacent to the South African Parliament. Situated on the slopes of Signal Hill, we reach the exotic Bo-Kaap quarter, formerly the Cape Malay Quarter, one of the oldest and most fascinating residential areas in the city with its brightly colored homes and winding cobblestone streets that date back to the 18th century. Linger on your own or return to the V&A Waterfront for leisure time. Tonight, a festive Welcome Dinner with South African dancers and singers celebrates your arrival. (Breakfast, Dinner)

DAY 4, Wednesday - Stunning Cape Peninsula, Wine Tasting & Estate Lunch
Endless views lie ahead at every turn as we travel along the stunning Cape Peninsula. Visit Hout Bay, a lively coastal town with a picturesque harbor and colorful boats moored on the dock along with fish markets, trendy restaurants and shops. Driving south over dramatic Chapman's Peak, the route follows the Atlantic Ocean to legendary Cape Point and the Cape of Good Hope, the romantic meeting of the mighty Atlantic and Indian oceans. Here, the one-of-a-kind Flying Dutchman funicular takes us from Cape Point Nature Reserve, a Natural World Heritage Site, to the old lighthouse with time to stroll along the cliff paths and photograph the unbelievable vistas. A change of pace as we travel past the naval base of Simon's Town to Boulders Beach, with its wind sheltered bays and sandy shores, home to a breeding colony of over 2,000 endangered African Penguins. To view these adorable little birds, a walkway has been built that takes us on an intimate tour of the area they call home. Then, a very special delectable lunch of local favorites with wine pairing is prepared for us at the Steenberg Estate. A remarkable wine tasting follows at the revered historic Groot Constantia Wine Estate where South Africa's wine industry originated. After a tour of the vineyard and cellars, we sample their award-winning wines that have been a brand since the Napoleonic era. The rest of the day and evening is at leisure to enjoy Cape Town's superb shops and gourmet restaurants. (Breakfast, Lunch)

DAY 5, Thursday - Historic Robben Island, Home Hosted Braai (BBQ)
A private tour to historic Robben Island today reveals the poignant struggles, hopes and dreams of freedom made famous by Nelson Mandela's imprisonment here. This notorious prison, located on an island off the coast of Cape Town in Table Bay is where South Africa's political prisoners were kept during the colonial and apartheid years of the country. A ferry takes us across the Bay to Robben Island, declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site, meet an ex-political prisoner who will lead us on a tour of the island and the infamous prison. We return to Cape Town in the afternoon for time at leisure. Later, a delightful evening has been planned at a private home in one of the lovely suburbs of Cape Town. We'll be hosted by a local family for a traditional South African Braai (BBQ). Share a delicious home-cooked meal along with delicious South African wines and hear about life in South Africa in a personal, relaxed and comfortable setting. (Breakfast, Dinner)

DAY 6, Friday - Lion Sands Private Game Reserve
The adventure begins as we transfer today to the airport for the flight to Kruger National Park in northeastern South Africa. Upon arrival, on to your unfenced private game reserve bordering Kruger National Park in Sabi Sands. You'll be warmly greeted and shown to your beautiful accommodations tucked into the greenery - an oasis in the midst of the pristine bushveld that promises an unforgettable stay. Perhaps meet with our special guest photographer for tips on how to best capture photos of the wildlife. After lunch at the lodge, be prepared for your first safari experience. Meet your ranger, who acts as a guide and educator for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity in the next few days to observe the "Big Five." Returning from your game drive, swap stories and sip fine wines on the extensive viewing decks overlooking the Sand River before a hearty and delectable dinner. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 7, Saturday - Lion Sands Private Game Reserve
Awake early, meet your ranger and safari companions and begin the exciting early morning game drive in open jeeps as the sun rises over the bushveld. After, return to camp for a hearty breakfast and perhaps even a bush walk. Time to relax and enjoy the fabulous facilities before lunch and another unforgettable afternoon game drive. This famous reserve offers exceptional game viewing. Elephants, lion, rhino, buffalo, cheetah, giraffe, zebra and a vast variety of antelope and other species can be closely observed along with the elusive leopard. As darkness approaches on your night drive, your ranger will scan the bush with a powerful spotlight pointing out the nocturnal wildlife - a highlight of the day's safari. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 8, Sunday - Lion Sands Private Game Reserve
Treasure your last day on safar at the Lion Sands Reserve with its astonishing variety of wildlife that includes over 200 mammal and 300 bird species. Take time to relax on the huge viewing decks, an ideal place for spotting game, or bird watching. Tonight, after game viewing, share a superb dinner and stories with your newfound friends. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 9, Monday - Victoria Falls, Zambia and Zimbabwe
Departing Kruger National Park, transfer to the Nelspruit airport for the flight to Livingstone in Zambia, continuing to our first views of awe-inspiring Victoria Falls, one of the "Seven Natural Wonders of the World!" Known locally as "the smoke that thunders," the sounds and sight of its powerful waters crashing into the mighty Zambezi River are truly a dramatic experience. With the help of our guides, we discover this natural marvel from walkways through the rainforest on the Zambian side of the river and learn about the flora and fauna that thrives in this lush area. After this first introduction to the Falls, we proceed to our renowned hotel, in Zimbabwe, to settle in, relax and enjoy a traditional British-style afternoon high tea. The evening promises an astonishing bush dinner experience, feasting on food cooked on open fires, with sightings of nocturnal creatures along wildlife frequented waterholes. (Breakfast, High Tea, Dinner)

DAY 10, Tuesday - Zimbabwe Side of Victoria Falls, Zambezi River Dinner
A local historian enlightens us this morning about David Livingstone, the famed missionary explorer who discovered the Falls in 1855 and named them after Queen Victoria. A guided tour follows of the magnificent Falls from the Zimbabwe side. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, it showers spray and thunderous sounds. The walk then takes us to the best view points of this iconic waterfall, over a mile wide and 351 feet high, wider and higher than Niagara Falls. Lunch at the Lookout Café before returning to the hotel for leisure time. Tonight, dine in style on a luxury cruiser floating on the waters of the Zambezi River. Revel in the exclusive solitude of this mighty river as we watch the sunset - a truly romantic African experience. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 11, Wednesday - Chobe River Safari
In the morning, we drive to Kasane, Botswana. Upon arrival, Botswana and Namibia entry formalities before boarding the sophisticated Zambezi Queen. A luxurious water safari experience awaits you on the dazzling Chobe River that divides Namibia's famous Caprivi Strip from Botswana's Chobe National Park. Zambezi Queen navigates roughly 25 km of the Chobe River, allowing you to explore different vantage points and enjoy unparalleled game viewing in one the most wildlife rich regions in Africa. After settling in to your luxurious cabin, we'll search for game by tender boat as the golden glow of the African sun sets - it's the perfect time of day to view wildlife as they gravitate towards the river before nightfall. Later, return to the ship and meet the Captain on the upper deck welcoming you with cocktails. A delectable dinner and an excellent choice of wine pairings concludes the evening. (Breakfast, Light Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 12, Thursday - Chobe River Safari
Wake up early to watch the sun rise on the river. Or, sleep late and savor your coffee and leisure time. Your choice of morning activities includes a water safari, or a village tour on the Namibian side of the river. Alternatively, perhaps bird watching or fishing instead. You may decide to remain on board as the Zambezi Queen glides its way along the banks of the river, photographing wildlife or enjoying the expansive views. After lunch, join the water safari on a tender boat that takes you up-close to a spectacular array of wildlife, including views of some of the elephants for which the Chobe is world-famous. At the end of the day, a delicious Farewell Dinner and great conversation with our newfound friends about the incredible days on the Chobe River. Your journey in Africa is coming to a close, with fond memories to cherish for a lifetime. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 13, Friday - Depart South Africa
On our cruise this morning, enjoy your last bit of animal spotting before bidding farewell to the friendly crew. Your vacation ends today. (Breakfast)

Tour Map
River Cruise Highlights
  • Explore the rich history and cultural sights of Cape Town, the sophisticated and sparkling coastal city
  • Ascend by cableway to the summit of Table Mountain, iconic symbol of Cape Town
  • Visit the exotic Bo-Kaap quarter with its brightly colored homes and winding cobblestone streets
  • Travel on the Flying Dutchman funicular from Cape Point Nature Reserve to the old lighthouse for breathtaking views of the Cape of Good Hope
  • At Boulders Beach, home to 2,000 endangered African Penguins, view these adorable little birds
  • Enjoy three adventurous days at a renowned Private Game Reserve in Greater Kruger National Park
  • Search for the "Big Five" with private rangers during game drives in open 4-wheel drive safari vehicles
  • Stand in awe at astonishing Victoria Falls, one of the "Seven Natural Wonders of the World"
  • On the Chobe River, get up-close to throngs of wildlife plus elephants on daily Water Safaris
  • Choice of activities on the Zambezi Queen include a village tour on the Namibian side of the river
  • Festive Welcome Dinner in Cape Town with South African dancers and singers celebrates your arrival
  • Private wine tasting at the Groot Constantia Wine Estate where the country's wine industry originated
  • Specially arranged lunch and wine pairing at the exclusive restaurant at the Steenberg Estate
  • A private tour of historic Robben Island, and an opportunity to meet a former political prisoner, reveals Mandela's struggles, hopes and dreams for freedom
  • Enjoy a traditional South African Braai (BBQ) hosted by a South African family in their home
  • Authentic safari experiences in unfenced Private Game Reserve bordering Kruger National Park
  • Private Game Reserve ranger, guide and educator leads you on a once-in-a-lifetime chance to observe the "Big Five"
  • Celebrate your arrival in Victoria Falls with British-style afternoon high tea at your elegant hotel
  • Enjoy an astonishing bush dinner in Zimbabwe with delicious food cooked on open fires
  • A local historian enlightens us about David Livingstone, the famed explorer who discovered the Falls
  • Cruise on the luxurious Zambezi Queen that offers unsurpassed game viewing on the Chobe River
  • Lounge Access in Johannesburg's International Terminal while you await your international flight
All This Included
  • All Intra-flights: Cape Town-Skukuza, Nelspruit-Livingstone, Kasane-Johannesburg
  • 11 nights accommodations in well-located Luxury Accommodations
  • Maximum 20 passengers per tour
  • 27 meals: 11 breakfasts, 7 lunches with soft drinks, 9 dinners with wine
  • Bottled water daily
  • Welcome and Farewell receptions
  • Hotel porterage and complimentary in-room Wi-Fi in all rooms
  • Comprehensive sightseeing with all entrance fees per itinerary
  • Tour manager throughout plus expert ranger guides on the Game Reserve and Zambezi Queen
  • Comfortable air-conditioned vehicles for sightseeing and transfers
  • Game drives in open 4-wheel drive safari vehicles and water-based safaris on tender boats
  • Tips for restaurant staff, drivers and ranger Game Reserve guides
Accommodations on this Tour
Cape Town: Table Bay Hotel
Kruger National Park: Lion Sands River Lodge
Victoria Falls: The Victoria Falls Hotel
Cruising: Zambezi Queen
Notes
  • Passengers should select international flights from Johannesburg that depart no earlier than 7 pm on Day 13. Please note, all passport holders should have four or more entirely blank (unstamped) visa pages in their passport when traveling to South Africa, Zambia & Zimbabwe. Effective June 1, 2015 children 17 & under will be required to present an unabridged full birth certificate. Extracts or copies are not acceptable. If both parents are not traveling with the child, additional documentation is required.
  • Triple rooms are not available for this package.
  • This moderately active trip covers a fair amount of ground each day. Expect from three to four hours walking every touring day. The pace is moderate, however you will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes.
  • Please ask your Vacations To Go travel counselor for more information. 
Terms and Conditions

* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines. Sorry, we are unable to offer air from countries other than the U.S. However, for those international customers who are able to arrange their own transportation to the trip origination city, we are able to offer the land/cruise portion of the package at the price quoted.



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