Following the arrival of the group flight in the morning, we leave Johannesburg and drive about 5 hrs to our campsite just outside of Hazyview. Tonight there is chance to do an optional night game drive.
After breakfast, we will drive 30 mins to Kruger National Park where we will spend the day. We have a game drive this morning, where we hope to see the lions, leopards, elephants, Cape buffalo and Black rhinos, as well as cheetahs, giraffes and hippos. We'll stop for lunch at a campsite in the park, with time to swim and rest during the worst of the heat. In the afternoon we will do another game drive before returning to camp at sunset. We camp inside the park, where we hope to hear lions roar or hyenas cackle as we fall asleep.
After a final game drive in the park this morning, we return to camp for breakfast before heading across the border to Mozambique. Depending on how long the border crossing takes, we should arrive in Maputo in the late afternoon. Maputo is one of Africa's most attractive capital cities, boasting Mediterranean-style architecture, wide streets and an abundance of sidewalk cafes; we should have time to explore this charming city this afternoon.
We have a full day driving today from Maputo to Inhambane. Palm oil and copra plantations make up a lot of the scenery until we arrive back on the beaches of Ponta da Barra. Inhambane is one of Mozambique's oldest settlements, with an interesting history going back to the 11th century, well before the arrival of the first Portuguese settlers. It is a charming town, with wide, tree-lined streets and elegant old buildings and there should be time to explore these before we head further west to where we will stay the next two nights.
Today we have a full day at a lodge on the peninsula to relax on the beach or participate in a variety of optional activities. There is a chance here for going out on quad bikes, scuba diving, canoeing, whale watching or horse riding, or to just relax on the beautiful beaches of the Indian Ocean.
An early start to go back to Inhambane. We then turn north and head for Vilanculos, arriving in the mid afternoon. We have time to explore the market and this small resort town before we head to our campsite on the beachfront.
Vilanculos is the gateway to the Bazaruto Archipelago, Mozambique's only underwater national park. Today we have a full day in Vilanculos to explore the town, relax on the beach or participate in a variety of optional activities. There is the chance to spend the day on the Indian Ocean, going on dhow trips, diving, or snorkeling, or to just relax on the stunning beaches in this pristine area of Mozambique.
We have a full day driving today, leaving Vilanculos and Mozambique behind, and crossing into Zimbabwe. We will pass scenic villages along the way, and will break up the drive with stops for photos and to rest. Tonight we stay in Mutare.
After an early start we drive just south of Mutare to the Great Zimbabwe ruins, where we have lunch and a couple of hours to explore the ruins. Great Zimbabwe is the greatest medieval city in sub-Saharan Africa. A religious and temporal capital, at its peak, it dominated a realm stretching across eastern Zimbabwe and into modern-day Botswana, Mozambique and South Africa. We then head to Antelope Park in the mid-afternoon, where we spend the next two nights.
Antelope Park is truly unique, offering opportunities found nowhere else. It is home to the African Lion Environmental Research Trust, and is the world's first Lion Rehabilitation & Release into the Wild Programme. While there, we have the chance to partake in optional activities that are the exclusive to this park. You may choose to 'walk with lions' - this is a chance to go with experienced guides and handlers on a one and a half hour walk accompanied by lion cubs of 6-18 months in age! It is also possible to go out on a 'night encounter' safari, when the safari vehicles accompany the older lions who are taken out to practice their hunting skills - for anyone hoping to see a lion kill, this is likely one of the best chances to do so. The park also offers the chance to ride an elephant - and even to swim with one, a truly extraordinary experience.
We have an early start this morning, aiming to arrive in Bulawayo by 9am so that we can have a full day in Matobo National Park. Matobo is the oldest national park in the country, and so it is rich with history as well as wildlife. We spend the morning tracking rhino both on foot and in safari vehicles. Matobo is a protection zone for both Black and White rhino, and was made a World Heritage Site in 2003. It contains the largest concentration of leopards in an area of its size in the world - although, being so elusive, it is still difficult to spot them. The park is known for its large concentration of Black eagles, which can be seen up on the rock formations, or soaring overhead searching for prey. After lunch we will visit one of several caves in the park, while learning more about the history of the area. The park contains 3000 officially registered rock-art sites, some of which we also hope to visit while there. There is also the option of visiting Rhodes grave. We camp in Bulawayo tonight.
We drive to Hwange National Park in the morning and spend the afternoon in the park on a game drive. Hwange is home to over 400 species of bird and over 100 types of animals, and has one of the largest number of elephants in the world. During the drier season, the wildlife in the park tends to congregate around the various watering holes, which allows us good game viewing opportunities
We have a morning game walk before leaving Hwange and heading to Victoria Falls. We aim to arrive at Victoria Falls around lunchtime so as to have the afternoon to wander around the town, visit the spectacular falls, and plan our adventure activities for tomorrow.
We have a free day in Victoria Falls today. There is a choice of optional activities including one of the world's highest bungy jumps, sunset cruises, and high adrenaline white water rafting
After breakfast, we head to the airport to catch our flight to London, via Johannesburg.