South Africa: Politics, cuisine and animal life in the new South Africa!
August 16 – September 1, 2018
NO SINGLE SUPPLEMENT!

Join this special Iconic Journeys Worldwide experience in South Africa!

We will be covering so many topics that will certainly excite your many interests, from politics, cuisine, wine and lots of animal life as we spend time in a game reserve. 

Of course you will have the opportunity to enjoy Capetown, said by devotees to be one of the most beautiful cities in the world, along with the wine country of Stellenbosch, the people and town of Soweto to best understand the apartheid era and what has transpired since.

Throughout this visit to South Africa you will be staying in beautiful accommodations reflecting the diversity of this country, the most dynamic in Africa. And as with all Iconic Journeys Worldwide small group programs, wonderful food will be ever present!

 

Friday, August 17 – Capetown arrival
Upon arrival at Cape Town International Airport, you will be met by one of our representative and transfer to your hotel for checking. The remainder of your day is independent. Dinner will be available at the hotel for you at a time of your choosing. (D)

 

Saturday, August 18 – Capetown
Following breakfast, your rendezvous in the reception area at 9:30AM and meet your guide and fellow travelers to begin your touring of Capetown.
Today’s touring begins with an orientation tour of Capetown. You go down to the waterfront and embark on a ferry to Robben Island where most of Nelson Mandela’s prison time was served. Upon return to the mainland, take a cable car up Table Mountain, one of the first things most visitors want to do in Cape Town. Once on the top, a 1000m above the city below, you are rewarded with spectacular 360 views. Take your time and enjoy this unique environment.
Following your visit to Table Mountain, drive through the city with various stops at District Six Museum, Company Gardens, Green Market and Bo-Kaap area.We continue today’s touring by visiting the Castle of Good Hope, the oldest surviving building in South Africa. Built between 1666 and 1679, this pentagonal fortification replaced a small clay and timber fort built by Commander Jan van Riebeeck in 1652 upon establishing a maritime replanishment station art the Cape of Good Hope for the Dutch East India Company, better known as the VOC (Verenigde Oos-Indische Compagnie).
Perched between the ocean and the mountain, with a national park as its heart, there is nowhere like Cape Town. Cape Town, the “Mother City”, is the oldest city in South Africa Large numbers of tourists flock to Cape Town to enjoy this unique city with its fascinating history, interesting culture, natural beauty, award winning wines and laidback lifestyle. The Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, one of the city’s main tourist attractions, offers the visitor a unique shopping and holiday experience on a scenic working harbour. A visit to Cape Town is synonymous with a visit to the peninsula south of the city, and for good reason. Feel free to relax and recover from your long flight by exploring some of Capetown on your own.
Later in evening you will be transferred to the Gold Restaurant for your opening dinner and the opportunity to meet with your fellow travellers. An evening at the Gold Restaurant starts off with the drumbeat of the djembe drum. An interactive drum circle offers you the opportunity to join in and learn how to play the djembe. Soon you will be pounding your drum to the rhythms and sounds of Africa. After pounding the skins of the drums, you can soothe your hands in a traditional hand washing ceremony as you are led into the ancient courtyards. Enjoy your dinner off Cape Malay and African cuisine. Overnight in Capetown. (B, L, D)

 

Sunday, August 19 – Capetown
Following breakfast, we drive to what was once the small fishing village of Hout Bay, which today, is now a popular suburb of Cape Town. Over and above being a lovely family beach, it has many tourist attractions which include the World of Birds, a township tour to the vibrant Imizamo Yethu, arts and crafts, boat rides out to Seal Island and some great, casual restaurants where you can relax and enjoy the surroundings.

Hout Bay

Your touring continues with the scenic Chapman’s Peak Drive, as it winds it way between Noordhoek and Hout Bay. Situated on the Atlantic Coast, at the south-western tip of South Africa, it is one of the most spectacular marine drives anywhere in the world. The 9km route, with its 114 curves, skirts the rocky coastline of Chapman’s Peak. The drive offers stunning 180° views with many areas along the route where you can stop and take in the scenery or sit down for a relaxing picnic. **Kindly note that Chapman’s Peak Drive is weather permitting**
Continue alongside the Indian Ocean and stop to see the Jackass penguin colony, which has become well established at Boulders beach near Simons town. Then continue traveling until reaching Cape Point and the Cape of Good Hope. Said to be the romantic meeting place of the two mighty oceans, the Atlantic and the India.
We drive to Cape Point, a spectacular sight, covered in endemic fynbos and home to breath-taking bays, beaches and rolling green hills and valleys, just 60km outside of Cape Town. Cape Point falls within the Cape Floral Region, a World Heritage Site. The Cape Floral Region is one of the richest areas for plants in the world – it is home to nearly 20% of Africa’s flora. Cape Point is open daily and is a must-see.
While visiting Cape Point, take the Flying Dutchman funicular up to the lighthouse, where there is an outstanding view of the point and ocean.  The funicular is named after a ghost ship whose destiny it is to sail the oceans forever. More information can be found at the museum. Overnight in Capetown. (B, L)

Wine vineyards of Stellenbosch

 

Monday, August 20 – The Cape – Stellenbosch – Oude Werk
Following breakfast, you check out of your hotel and take a journey through the winelands of the Cape.
Today’s travel takes us to Stellenbosch, a blend of historical architecture, student life, epicurean delights and oak-lined avenues. Stellenbosch is a picturesque university town surrounded by mountains and vineyards. A walking tour of the town centre allows visitors to take in its beautifully preserved Cape Dutch and Victorian architecture, as well as the many enticing art galleries, craft shops, clothing boutiques and gift stores, while foodies may prefer indulging in mouth-watering cuisine and fine wines at one of the chic restaurants or buzzing bistros. Stellenbosch is also the ideal base from which to explore the renowned local wine route, boasting a high proportion of the country’s leading wine estates. You will have the opportunity to do some wine tasting while visiting some of the wine area of Stellenbosch, Franschhoek and Paarl. You will also have a visit to the the Hugenot Museum.
Lunch today will be a traditional home cooked Winelands experience in the Dwars River Valley, lying between the towns of Stellenbosch and Franschhoek. Your hotel is a community activist, grandmother, wife and etnrepreneur, as well as a terrific cook and storyteller.
Late afternoon checkin at your hotel, the Oude Werf. Overnight in Oude Werf. (B, L)

Ostrich farm

 

Tuesday, August 21 – Oudtshoorn
Following breakfast, we check out of your Stellenbosch hotel.
We depart for Oudtshoorn, some scenic five hours away. Oudtshoorn is famous for its ostriches and the magnificent Cango Caves. Located along the renowned Route 62, which takes motorists past one awe-inspiring sight after another, Oudtshoorn is known as the Ostrich Capital of the World: these huge birds are almost as common as people in this charming town. Other than ostriches and the wonderful feathers and meat they provide, the Oudtshoorn area also boasts the spectacular Cango Caves; the largest show cave system in Africa, permeated with sparkling stalactites and stalagmites and captivating rock formations. We will have a tapas lunch today with the late afternoon and evening free for you to enjoy the amenities and scenic setting of your hotel. Overnight in Oudtshoorn. (B, L)

Cango Caves

 

Wednesday, August 22 -  Oudtshoorn
Today’s tourin gis in the Oudtshoorn region. We visit the spectacular Cango Caves, a subterranean wonderland of magnificent stalactite and stalagmite rock formations that attracts thousands of visitors annually. They extend more than two kilometres into the Swartberg Mountains and visitors can take guided tours that wind through narrow passageways and steep stairways linking the massive caverns.
We then visit a Safari Ostrich Show Farm, an operating farm where visitors will see large flocks of ostriches at different stages of development in the surrounding fields. During your tour, you will  hear about every aspect of ostrich farming, from breeding to rearing. The tour starts in the breeding camp, with a nest of ostrich eggs, where the first stage of the ostrich life cycle is explained. Visitors will get the opportunity to test the strength of the eggs by standing on them – a great photo opportunity. During the breeding season visitors get to see ostrich eggs hatching in the incubator rooms. Visitors get to sit on an ostrich and those who are brave enough can even try their hand at riding one. Every tour ends with an “Ostrich Derby” where local jockeys display their riding skills. A highly entertaining and educational tour is guaranteed.
Continue on to Kosbus se gat, situated at the foothills of the Swartberg Mountain Range, some twelve minutes drive from the Cango Caves. Kobus started dreaming about developing the Swartberg as a tourism attraction in 1969 when he was only 10 years old. This dream started to come true when this family started short tours in 1998. Soon, Kosubus noted that guests couldn’t get enough of it and he built “Kobus se Gat,” a traditional South African Veldt Restaurant with material that was found on the farm. “Mr Rustic” and “Miss Style” meet each other halfway here as the food is mostly prepared on open fires. Overnight in Oudtshoorn. (B, L, D)

 

Thursday, August 23 -  Plettenberg Bay
Following breakfast at your hotel, you check out and depart Oudtshoorn for ravel to the town of George. Continue along the coast traveling past Wilderness & Knysna to the town of Plettenberg Bay.
The Portuguese explorers called it the Beautiful Bay, and it’s easy to see why – Plettenberg Bay is a picturesque, charming town with miles of pristine beaches, tranquil lagoons, clean rivers, indigenous forests and a dramatic rocky peninsula. Playground to the wealthy, beach mansions overlook the Indian Ocean, often dotted with luxury yachts, while leisure time is given over to polo and golf, among other things. However, all kinds of visitors will feel at peace here as simply swimming in the warm water on a safe beach is a great way to experience the beauty of Plettenberg Bay.
Stop in Knysna for a Sunset Cruise.  Your base in Plettenberg Bay is near the beach, with panoramic views of the ocean from your hotel’s rooftop deck. Enjoy a sunset cruise and then independent dining. Overnight in Plettenberg Bay. (B)

 

Friday, August 24 – The Robberg Beach and Plettenberg Bay
Nature and animal life are the thrust for today’s program. Under a two-hectare dome, we visit the world’s largest aviary. Birds of Eden, is a safe and natural free-flight environment for African birds and a selection of smaller animals. An indigenous forest and a mysterious ruin with walk-behind waterfall provide these graceful creatures and their visitors with amusement.
We continue with a visit to Tsitsikamma National Park. Much of the indigenous forest in this eastern part of the Garden Route falls within the Tsitsikamma National Park. The park is not only a breathtaking haven for indigenous flora and fauna but also for marine life. A marine conservation belt forms part of the park, stretching five and a half kilometres out into the ocean.
Our ecological adventure leaves from Central Beach, with an exciting beach launch and then heads east, past the bird sanctuary and Keurbooms beach to Arch Rock.  Here we usually encounter Bottlenose and the rare Indo-Pacific Humpback Dolphins as well as some shark species. From Arch Rock we head out into the middle of the Bay where pelagic seabirds are normally to be found some 7km from the shore.  Out there our resident Bryde’s whales may be seen, as well as Common Dolphins or Southern Right and Humpback whales during their season.
We then traverse the Bay to the point of Robberg Peninsula and out to the WILD side, often seeing groups of Whales and pods of Dolphins.  Cruising back along the inside of Robberg, we see the unique geology from this unusual viewpoint and can observe our growing Cape Fur Seal Colony.  Finally we head back along the Robberg beach, while a brief rundown on the history of the area is given.  After passing the Beacon Island Hotel, built on the site of an original Whaling Station, we end the experience with an exhilarating landing, again on Central Beach. Overnight at Plettenberg Bay. (B, L)
NOTE : ALL TOURS AND ENCOUNTERS WITH MARINE MAMMALS ARE CONDUCTED STRICTLY ACCORDING TO CURRENT REGULATIONS AND CONSERVATION GUIDELINES

 

Saturday, August 25 – Amakhala Game and Big 5 Safari
Amakhala Game Reserve is an ideal choice for your Big 5 Safari destination. This 7,500 hectre reserve is renowned for its truly awesome topography, created by the slowly meandering Bushman’s River running through it. Guided by experienced rangers, you can return to nature and explore the diverse wildlife and the rugged landscapes of the Eastern Cape valley and bushveld on Amakhala Game Reserve.
Morning and evening game drives in open Land Rovers through Amakhala Game Reserve will leave you in awe of the diverse vegetation and spectacular scenery which abounds here. Not only do we offer the much sought after Big 5, but there are over 16 antelope species, zebra, giraffe and many small interesting species. Our elephant sightings are likely to the highlight of your stay. In addition to game drives, we also offer boat cruises and guided walks. For a change of pace, enjoy bird watching and game spotting whilst gently cruising down the Bushman’s River! Refreshment breaks have been included to make your safari experience that much more enjoyable. This bush experience will create memories, which will linger as long as the African sun sets.

Enjoying Sundowners between outings!

The Amakhala Heritage Collection of Lodges are each owner managed and unique, offering a wide variety of accommodation with a personalized service style. We are proud to offer you the superb Amakhala service and famous hospitality.
Amakhala Game Reserve has been awarded the voluntary label by Fair Trade in Tourism South Africa (FTTSA).  This is based on adherence to specific criteria such as fair wages and working conditions, fair distribution of benefits, ethical business practice, and respect for human rights, culture and the environment. The FTTSA label is an independent endorsement of fair and responsible tourism practise in South Africa.
The stylish Safari Lodge is secretly hidden in indigenous bush. It is a romantic thatched lodge with luxury safari huts inspired by African tribal design. Each hut is complete with a private plunge pool and a small private lounge area. Large beds are draped with mosquito nets, sparkling wine sits on ice alongside a bath filled with aromatherapy scented bubbles making this a favorite for honeymooners and the romantic at heart. Indulge in sheer relaxation as you unwind next to the pool overlooking the lush African bushveld before being ushered away on an exciting BIG-5 game drive. Overnight in the Amakhala Safari Lodge. (B, L, D)

 

Sunday, August 26 – Amakhala Game Reserve
Spend the rest of the day at your leisure exploring the game reserve, as well as having two game drives. Overnight in the Amakhala Safari Lodge. (B, L, D)

 

Monday, August 27 – Amakhala Game Reserve/Port Elizabeth/Johannesburg
Enjoy and morning game drive and breakfast before checking out of your lodge to depart for Port Elizabeth Airport for your flight to Johannesburg.
Upon your arrival, store your luggage at the hotel and embark on an afternoon tour of Soweto. Your visit to Sowet defies many of the assumed notions of what Soweto and her people are like…or should be like! You will visit the Soweto Theater, one of the most exciting pieces of architecture in Johannesburg. Tour hot street art. Taste wine at the first wine bar in a township, meet designers and sample Soweto brewed craft beer. Overnight in Johannesburg. (B)

Soweto TowersVictoria Falls view from South Africa

 

Tuesday, August 28 – Victoria Falls
After breakfast, rendezvous in the lobby and transfer to the OR Tambo International Airport for your flight to Victoria Falls. You will be leaving the guide you have had until now…
Once you arrive to your hotel, where the rest of the afternoon if free for you to relax and enjoy the surroundings. Tonight for dinner you will be immersed in a special atmosphere. Tantalising aromas of local dishes and game mean on the barbeque fill the restaurant which is partially open to the surrounding forest and the night skies. The menus is influenced by local ingredients and offers a unique slections of dishes, including Nyimo Beans, groundnuts, Kariba Break with smoked crocodile and deep-fried Kapenta, which are sardines from Kariba. Main course offerings include options ranging from gilled ostrich, buffalo curry, suckling pig on the spit, guinea fowl, game stew, and even warthog fillet. There are also many good vegetarian options, so no need to worry if you are not an adventurous diner. However, if you are particularly fearless, you might ask to try dried Mopane Worm, but make sure you have taken out travel insurance!!! Overnight in Victoria Falls Safari Lodge. (B, D)

 

Wednesday, August 29 – Victoria Falls
One of the original natural wonders of the world, the Victoria Falls is a World Heritage Site and an extremely popular tourism attraction. Victoria fall is usually known locally as ‘The Smoke that Thunders’ this spectacle is accessible from both Zambia and Zimbabwe and it is an ideal place to combine a game viewing and water sports. There is excellent fishing, a terrifying bungee jump and arguably the best commercial white water rafting in the world.

Victoria Falls view from South Africa

Late afternoon you depart for your sunset cruise on the Zambezi River. The boats meander slowly upstream along the length of the Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park as you spot animals and birds from comfortable chairs on cool wooden decks. Excellent food is served and the bar is well stocked with spirits, good wines, beers and soft drinks. Overnight at Victoria Falls Safari Lodge. (B)

 

Thursday, August 30 – Victoria Falls – Chinotimba Township Tour
This morning embark on a Chinotimba Township tour and experience the warmth of an African urban settlement. During the tour, you will have an opportunity to observe township life; from the oldest houses to the taverns, the local marke and churches and more. During a visit to the Chinotimba Primary School you can meet the school’s headmaster or one of his assistants, who will take you on a tour of the school and possibly, a chance to meet some of the students. Overnight at Victoria Falls Safari Lodge. (B)

 

Friday, August 31  – Victoria Falls – flight to Johannesburg
After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your return flight to Johannesburg…
After having your day in Johannesburg, this evening’s « Farewell Dinner » will be a « Pan-Afrikan Plate », in which plates are served communal style on a beautiful long wooden table that can serve up to twenty diners. There are no separate tables. This is a shared type of dining meant to enable people to meet one another and share in the culinary experience. Overnight in Johannesburg. (B, D)

Central Johannesburg

 

Saturday, September 1 – Departure
This morning transfers will be arranged for your departure flights from Johannesburg International Airport. (B)


HOTELS


Capetown:  The Three Boutique Hotel
Old and new meet in perfect harmony at The Three Boutique Hotel, with the conversion of this beautiful National Monument building into a stylish and affordable 15-bedroom boutique hotel in the heart of Cape Town. Owned by Justin & Natalia Pearson and run by their close friends Alun & Julie Jones, the service stands out as being exceptional, from the first email, to collection at the airport and looking after you during your Cape Town holiday or business trip at The Three Boutique Hotel. Steeped in hospitality from years of working on cruise ships, Justin and Natalia embody the perfect hosts. The Three Boutique Hotel fills the gap between a too-homely guest house and an impersonal hotel; it’s exactly the right balance of chic surroundings, 4-star facilities and friendly service. The Three is modern and sophisticated Cape Town hotel accommodation with an historic heart in a trendy part of Cape Town. It offers free Wifi throughout, air conditioning, spacious bedrooms with flatscreen TVs and en-suite bathrooms. A columned terrace tiled in traditional black and white wraps around the house leading to the designer swimming pool and outdoor lounge. The rooftop deck adds another dimension for sunbathing and sunset drinks, with unparalleled views of Cape Town’s three iconic mountains; Table Mountain, Lions Head and Devil’s Peak, after which The Three is named. Cape Town International Airport is just 17km away and our airport shuttle can be booked to collect you or drop you off. The hotel shuttle is also available throughout the day for personalized tours as well as in the evenings to take you to and from restaurants. Many of Cape Town’s top tourist sights are within walking distance and The Gardens shopping center is just a 3 minute walk.


Oude Werf: Oude Werf Hotel
A stroll from the many historic attractions of the Winelands ‘capital’ of Stellenbosch, Oude Werf combines a centuries-old heritage as South Africa’s oldest continuously operating hotel with luxury contemporary comforts and intimate hospitality. Rest in one of 58 beautifully designed, deluxe en suite accommodations. Enjoy classic Cape flavors and vintages at a superb restaurant with vine-covered courtyard. Relax in its cozy lounge and bar, or refresh in its shady gardens at poolside. www.oudewerf.co.za


Oudtshoorn: Queens Hotel
A stunning 19th century property restored to its original grandeur.


Plettenberg Bay: The Robberg Hotel
Beautiful seaside property along the Garden Route.


Amakhala Game Reserve: Amakhala Safari Lodge
The stylish Safari Lodge is secretly hidden in indigenous bush. It is a romantic thatched lodge with luxury safari huts inspired by African tribal design. Each hut is complete with a private plunge pool and a small private lounge area. Large beds are draped with mosquito nets, sparkling wine sits on ice alongside a bath filled with aromatherapy scented bubbles making this a favorite for honeymooners and the romantic at heart. Indulge in sheer relaxation as you unwind next to the pool overlooking the lush African bushveld before being ushered away on an exciting BIG-5 game drive. www.amakhala.co.za


Victoria Falls: Victoria Falls Safari Lodge

 

Cost per person: $5,895.

There are no single supplements!


NOTE: Price is Per Person. 

What is included:
• All hotels with breakfast and meals included, as indicated by B, L, D, entrance fees at sites noted on itinerary, water with group sit-down lunches and breakfasts, English speaking guide and private vehicle and driver.
* Airport transfers
* Internal flights referenced in the itinerary narrative

 

What is NOT included:
* International airfare to South Africa
* Gratuities to guide and driver
* Alcohol, additional beverages and any items of a personal nature.

TO REGISTER OR FOR INFORMATION

For additional information, contact Iconic Journeys Worldwide at;
info@IconicJourneysWorldwide.com  or 888-474-5502.