Follow in the footsteps of the great explorer Dr. David Livingstone as you learn about his life and 19th century expeditions through South Africa, Botswana and Zambia. Departs Oct 5th 2014. Head out in search of the “Smoke That Thunders” led by famous Livingstone and African history expert, Russell Gammon. A distant descendant of this legendary scientist and explorer, Gammon’s worked with everyone from the Smithsonian Institute and National Geographic to the BBC and Discovery Channel.
Begin your journey in Cape Town as Dr. Livingstone himself did. Experience a variety of activities and sightseeing journeys including a climb up Table Mountain, a visit to a modern day missionary projects, and more. Next it’s off to the Kalahari Desert where Livingstone’s actual mission station was located, followed by a visit to the breathtaking Makgadikgadi salt pans. While there, trek with local Bushmen in search for wildlife, play with some cheerful meerkats, visit Chapman’s unique Baobab, and more. Continue on to Linyanti which Livingstone and his expedition team crossed through on their way to the mighty Zambezi River. Admire the vast scenery teeming with wildlife including lions, elephants, giraffe, zebra, leopards, and more during various game drives. Prepare for a scenic cruise across the Zambezi river to the thundering Victoria Falls which Livingstone christened after England’s Queen Victoria.
Price is $16,200 per person based on double occupancy. Departs Oct 5th 2014.
Minimum group size 6, maximum group size 16. Please note departures are not guaranteed until 120 days before travel, and we advise you do not book international air until the tour has been confirmed. Deposit is due upon booking, and refundable up until 120 days before travel. At 120 days before travel, and upon departure guarantee, final payment is due. Minimum traveler age is 18.
Upon arrival into Cape Town, you will be met at the door of the plane and escorted through Customs and Immigration, avoiding any queues.
Transfer from the airport to your hotel, where the rest of the evening is at leisure.
Mount Nelson is a recognized luxury hotel in the heart of Cape Town, placed in beautifully landscaped gardens. The 201 rooms are decked in traditional British decor, promising luxury linen alongside modern necessities expected by seasoned travelers. Fine cuisine is served at Mount Nelson's restaurants, with a wide variety of options for all tastes. Using fresh local ingredients, chefs whip up everything from bistro-style al fresco surprises to international staples. Be sure to use the hotel facilities. Relax at the spa, or wander around the downtown core of Cape Town. The hotel is conveniently located within walking distance of many interesting sights and the busy part of town.
Today, after breakfast, you will be met by your local guide for an exploration of Cape Town, known affectionately as the Mother City. Your tour will take in the Houses of Parliament, the Castle (built between 1666 and 1679, this is South Africa’s oldest building), lively Greenmarket Square with its daily market, the Company Gardens and of course Table Mountain which will give you spectacular views over the city and Peninsula.
Today, lunch will be done independently.
This afternoon after the tour, you'll head to the Mount Nelson Hotel where you'll be introduced to your experienced host for this Southern African Adventure, Mr. Russel Gammond. Mr. Gammond has spent many years guiding tours through the diverse landscapes of the Southern African nations, and boasts an uncanny skill set for tracking some of the region’s most recognized and elusive wildlife. His in-depth knowledge of David Livingstone's explorations has influenced his own experiences in the wild, which he'll happily pass on to you during this afternoon tea and information session.
This evening is free, you may walk about Cape Town and enjoy the city.
This is a tour which delves deep into South Africa’s political past and opens up doors to communities not always encountered in the city itself. You will start off at the colourful Bo- Kaap, home to the Malay community and one of the oldest residential areas in the city, before crossing over to District Six, once a vibrant neighbourhood, but turned during Apartheid into a deserted neighbourhood. The museum makes for interesting viewing. From here, we visit one of the townships – created specifically for black residents under Apartheid. We join local community workers on a walk about through the township, meeting many friendly faces en route and also seeing the changes being brought about here with the advent of the New South Africa. We also stop at one of the many successful projects operated by uThando, a non-profit organisation dedicated to the revitalization of communities. On our return to the city, we board a ferry to Robben Island (weather permitting). Here we will be joined by a local guide – someone who spent time on the island during the Apartheid years – and thus is able to give a personal and often moving account of time spent there. You will also learn something about the island’s most famous prisoner – Nelson Mandela – and see his cell where he spent nearly 27 years of his life.
Lunch today is not included.
Dinner this evening is also done indepenedently.
This morning, after breakfast, transfer between your hotel and the airport.
Enjoy a direct flight today between Cape Town and Maun. Flight time is approximately 3hrs 45mins. The flight is scheduled to depart Cape Town approx. 9:45am and arrive into Maun approx. 1:30pm. Please Note: Flight times may vary.
Next, onto a short charter hop flight; this departs Maun and travels to Makgadikgadi, Botswana.
Lunch is included.
After tea, travel down to the pans where you will be given a brief safety talk before mounting your quad bike to head off across the pans. Watch the sun set and the stars rise. This is one of the only places in the world where the silence is so complete you can hear the blood circulating through your ears. There is not one visual landmark to be seen and one swiftly loses one’s sense of perspective.
Dinner is included.
Jack’s Camp which was refurbished in a traditional East African 1940's safari style is situated in one of the most unique regions of the country - the Makgadikgadi Pans. The Makgadikgadi is not without drama and, here, the emphasis is on observing the intricacies of a truly unique ecosystem.
Set off in the morning to visit some of the Kalahari’s meerkats (‘Suricate’ to science-minded people and ‘Timon’ to Lion King Fans). Get up close and personal with these captivating creatures. On chilly mornings, you might well find a meerkat snuggling up to you for warmth. In the absence of a termite mound or tree, these playful creatures may use your head as a sentry lookout post. By spending quality time with these incredibly social, superbly adaptable animals, you will be able to see how they interact with each other and their environment. You also get the chance to see the desert through the eyes of a meerkat – which, despite the fact that it’s only a foot off the ground, is a pretty spectacular vantage point, and definitely one of the most special and memorable game experiences you will encounter in Botswana.
This afternoon your group will meet up with the other guests from the lodge for your game drive in Makgadikgadi. The Makgadikgadi Pan is a series of large salt pans in the middle of the dry savannah of Northeastern Botswana. It is one of the largest salt flats in the world and interspersed between the pans are sand dunes, rocky islands and peninsulas, and desert terrain. The pan is all that remains of the formerly enormous Lake Makgadikgadi, which once covered an area larger than Switzerland, but dried up several thousand years ago. The Makgadikgadi Pans Game Reserve has an area of 3900 sq. km and is the scene of large migrations. Species that can be spotted here include wildebeest, zebra, gemsbok, eland and red hartebeest, as well as kudu, bushbuck, duiker, giraffe, springbok, steenbok, and even elephant, with all the accompanying predators, as well as the rare brown hyena. Your afternoon is guaranteed to be full of excitement, spectacular views and amazing experiences.
Early in the morning, comb the edge of the extinct lake shore to find some of the many stone tools and fossils that litter the pan surface and learn of the origins of early man. Return to camp for a huge brunch. After another decadent tea, head off to see one of Africa’s rarest carnivores – the brown hyena. Due to a PhD research programme on this cleverly adapted desert species, the cubs are habituated which allows us to observe their social behaviour without disturbance. Afterward, back to the camp for dinner by candlelight.
This morning you depart Jack’s Camp. Sit back and enjoy the view during your charter hop flight travelling between Makgadikgadi and Maun.
Next fly between Maun and Linyanti, Botswana, another short flight.
After arrival at Linyanti Bush Camp, your group will depart from the lodge for an afternoon game drive.
Linyanti Bush Camp is a small, intimate 12 bedded tented camp on the banks of the Linyanti marshes in a private reserve, which borders the western boundary of Chobe in the Chobe Enclave. Set in one of the remotest parts of Botswana, this private concession allows guests to experience the Botswana Wilderness through the lap of luxury. The magnificent area boasts of an unparalleled wilderness with highlights of big herds of buffalo in the dry season and regular close encounters of unique wildlife species. The endless vistas of the Linyanti marsh makes an incredible playing field for the avid bird watcher, combined with breath taking views of a scenery carved by defiant forces of nature. The personalised service and unique experience is afforded to a maximum of 12 guests at a time. Linyanti Bush Camp provides the perfect atmosphere for an authentic and wild safari experience. Combining simple design with modern comfort and a measure of African elegance, the camp offers a relaxing environment amidst the Wilderness.
The Linyanti Wildlife Reserve is considered one of the few remaining "untouched" game viewing gems of Africa. This absolutely superb safari area boasts similar characteristics as the nearby Okavango in terms of geographical trademarks and of course, wildlife. The truly gorgeous waterways and lagoons are ideal for attracting some of Africa's Big 5 species amongst the thousands of birds whom inhabit these lands. During the dry season, June to October, a variety of game including elephants, buffaloes, lions and wild dogs gather around the various watering holes and rivers in large numbers. During the green season, November to May, the game extends their reach further throughout the reserve into the blooming bush. Equally exciting morning or evening game drives through the reserve will provide an almost unreal game viewing experience during both the dry and wet seasons.
Later this afternoon you will head out on another game viewing drive.
Continue on this exploratory adventure of the Linyanti Wildlife Reserve on another game viewing drive, or if you wish spend time relaxing around your camp. A variety of optional activities are made available for you to enjoy including day and night-time game drives, nature treks, motorized boat cruises or traditional dugout “Mokoro” canoeing.
During your time in the Selinda Reserve you'll have the choice of Game Drives in open 4X4's and also the chance to explore the area by boat.
This morning you will fly between Linyanti and Livingstone, Zambia.
Transfer on arrival to the Royal Livingstone property, where you will check in for your final stop.
This leisurely excursion departs from the Royal Livingstone Hotel at 15h30, allowing you a long and relaxed visit on Livingstone Island itself. Experience the rush of the mighty Zambezi, as it sprays all around you, and enjoy the complimentary tea, coffee, light snacks, soft drinks, beer and wine.
The Royal Livingstone is one of the most exquisite hotels in Zambia, set quietly on the edge of the Zambezi river belt and within walking distance of the Victoria Falls. With 173 rooms set in 17 colonial-style buildings, the century architecture of the hotel lends to its cool, refined atmosphere. Refreshing, with lounging areas and terraces overlooking the misty waters, the hotel is shielded with privacy by the indigenous trees and plants. One may take meals at High Tea in the lounge, in elegance, or dine comfortably on the veranda with a view of the gardens. Relax in one of the lounging areas of the hotel or test your limits with white water rafting along the river.
Victoria Falls are a spectacular sight of awe-inspiring beauty and grandeur on the Zambezi River, bordering Zambia and Zimbabwe. A path along the edge of the forest provides the visitor who is prepared to brave the tremendous spray with an unparalleled series of views of the falls. One special vantage point is across the Knife edge bridge, where visitors can have the finest view of the Eastern Cataract and the Main Falls as well as the Boiling Pot where the river turns and heads down the Batoka Gorge. Other vantage points include the Falls Bridge and the Lookout Tree which commands a panoramic view across the Main Falls. Different times of the year will provide completely different experiences.
Later this morning you'll visit the Simonga Village, home to approximately 3000 inhabitants, it is a mixture of the Lozi and Tonga tribes. The village was founded in 1958 and is situated approximately 20 kilometers from Livingstone Town, along the Kazungula/Sesheke road, which runs parallel to the Zambezi River as it flows down towards the Victoria Falls. This village is quite unique as it one of only three in the entire country of Zambia that is ruled by a Headwoman, Inonge Imusho Samachila, who was chosen by the Royal Family to rule in 1970, following the death of her father, Imusho Samachila. Upon arrival, guests are escorted through the village by a local resident, where they are introduced to the daily activities of an African village. You'll then be taken back to the Royal Livingstone Golf Club for lunch.
Enjoy one last evening with your fellow travellers, and your host Russell Gamon, before finishing your adventure and heading home the following day. Dinner is included.
Transfer between your hotel and the airport.
Fly from Livingstone to Johannesburg today. The flight duration is approximately 2 hours.
Depart from Johannesburg international airport - End of itinerary.
November 08, 2012
"I am a world traveller and this was one of my top three vacations ever! Kensington Tours did a great job with EVERY little detail, from the planning to being met and catered to every step of the way. The highlight of our trip was actually our stay in Swakopmund when we stayed on the South Atlantic & went for an exciting boat ride to see all the sealife up close and personal (like a seal coming onboard the boat!), a roller coaster dune ride in a 4 X 4, the balloon ride over the red sand dunes over Namibia and several champagne brunches in the middle of the desert. Also, will never forget all the sundowner game drives which ended with our favorite cocktail, watching the sunset with wildlife close at hand! Unforgettable. Thanks Ivona for planning it all!"
Mark Masterson ,
October 26, 2012
"We recently returned from a wonderful 8 day tour of Kenya. Steven Kinyua is an exceptional Kenyan guide. He has a wonderful sense of humor, and made our Kenya safari a wonderful learning experience we will cherish for years.
Irene Saurwein ,
April 21, 2014
"I thought that both Raymond and Mike were outstanding guides. Our trip was wonderful. The only point I want to make that the food at the Farm House was not very good. Pretty disappointed. Our stay at the Serena in both locations was great. Overall great trip that we will never forget."
Francis Quinn ,
April 21, 2014
"The Mbugani Camps were nice but the beer was warm and they don't have ice. The owner was a great guy. Enjoyed Mara West. The staff and food were great. The second evening the loud mouth owner conducted a business meeting on the front porch disrupting a peaceful cocktail hour. It was totally inappropriate since he was very loud and discussed his business dealings with Kensington with others. They also need an ice machine. They ran out every night. Albert is probably the best guide I have ever had. Very knowlegeable. Mike was great too. Fabulous trip. You guys did a great job. We had a wonderful time."
Shayna Maislin ,
April 21, 2014
"Our party of 4 believe that we were given incorrect information regarding the type of suitcase that we should purchase for this trip. We were advised to buy a suitcase that was soft sided and no wheels. We arrived in Africa to see many others going on Safari with suitcases that had wheels. It was difficult for us to manouever our bags. I would highly recommend the tour guide that we had in the Serengetti . He was extremely knowledgeable, very helpful and courteous. We learned a great deal from Wasari . Our tour guide in the Mara was just ok . It would have been great to have the tour guide that we had in Serengeti for the complete trip. We understood that he could have crossed over from Tanzania into Kenya to get us . There was one flight within the country that we felt we may have been better off driving. We all believed that our Sales consultant could have spent more time with us on the phone going over the itinerary and guiding us through some of the decisions that we were making. For example Lake Manyara was not really necessary and perhaps we could have used that extra day in Zanzibar . These are some of the decisions that we felt our consultant could have assisted us with . We all agree that Kensington has first class staff working for them in Africa. All the camps that we stayed at were absolutely beautiful except perhaps for the one in Lake Manyara. All in all it was a spectacular trip!"
Jeanne Tarvin ,
April 21, 2014
"The tour was absolutely fabulous. It all started with the planning. Kathryn graciously accommodated our tight schedule and multiple needs, including a mid-trip change in plans. The tour guides and drivers were all great and extremely knowledgeable. The accommodations and meals were fantastic. I was apprehensive about going to China not knowing the language but it worked out great!"
Frank Manna ,
April 21, 2014
"Our guided transfers were exceptionally accommodating even though our flights were considerably delayed. The Annavillanas Jungle Lodge was spectacular for location, accommodations and food. The Rio Carnival experience was unique and unforgettable and our seats were wonderful. Loved the location of our hotel in Rio.......right on the street of Copacabana Beach.......fantastic. "
Michael Melvin Marsh ,
April 21, 2014
"The trip was very special and i credit Sunita Singh for helping to make it such. We worked on the itinerary for three months and she was very helpful, knowledgeable and present."
Lucy Gilkes ,
April 21, 2014
"The whole trip was wonderful but the guides were what made it for us. They were knowledgeable and thoughtful a pleasure to spend time with."
Janine Chey ,
April 21, 2014
"Our trip to Masai Mara via Kensington ran very smoothly. We stayed at the Mara West Lodge. Beautiful location atop a ridge overlooking the Masai Mara plains. Our luxury tents were quite comfortable and the staff/service at the lodge were great. Meals were very nice especially the daily soups. Our guide, Steve, was also great...so knowledgeable and eager to show us many interesting things. He planned our daily game drives and took us on a nature hike one afternoon. He clearly knows and understands this ecosystem. He has an amazing eye, finding animals in fields of tall grasses. Our entire family had an amazing time, trip of a lifetime...would love to go back!"
Stay in the know: Subscribe to our newsletter to have our hand-picked trips & specials delivered to you!
Please enter a destination