(Johannesburg, Sabi Sands, Durban, Knysna, Oudtshoorn, Franschhoek, Cape Town)
Discover South Africa; from the fertile flora and fauna of the Garden Route to the wildlife saturated habitats of Kruger National Park, Swaziland and KwaZulu Natal. Explore the unique lifestyle and culture of South Africa’s most visited and renowned cities including Durban, Port Elizabeth and the picturesque capital city, Cape Town. Immerse yourself into the true definition of “Beauty and the Beast” as you visit some truly remarkable and beautiful South African landscapes whilst heading into the wilderness alongside local expert game-trackers in search of South Africa’s famed “Big Five.” Enjoy that special feeling created by private vehicle transfers to and from various South African hotspots as well as the cozy yet elegant feeling created by overnight stays in some of South Africa’s best safari-style and modernized accommodations.
Upon arrival into South Africa you will be met at the door of your aircraft with your name on a paging board, and your documents will be handed over to you. You will be assisted through immigration, baggage collection and customs.
A privately driven vehicle will provide you with a transfer between the Airport and your hotel, or vice versa, today.
This tour provides you with an opportunity to take an in-depth look at South Africa’s turbulent past. Starting with a drive across Johannesburg to the south of the city to visit the Apartheid Museum (closed on Mondays!), which opened its doors in 2002. Here you will embark on a historical voyage of discovery, a personal exploration of the past that examines the story of apartheid right up to the first democratic elections held in 1994. The tour of the museum lasts approximately two hours. Then continue to the Constitution Hill precinct, bordered by the inner-city neighbourhoods of Braamfontein and Hillbrow. It is here that South Africa’s new Constitutional Court opened in March 2004. The new court building is, most appropriately, established on the site of the Johannesburg Fort, built as a fortress in 1898 and later converted to one of the country’s most notorious prisons – popularly known as “Number Four”. Your visit here includes entry to the museum which has been established in the old prison and brings home the significance of this development and what it means for the future of Johannesburg.
Experience this exciting and eco-friendly tour for a half day cycling adventure around the township and get to know the different communities and its history. Go to places such as a former migrant workers hostel for men - continue to Meadowlands, famous for the forced removals from Sophiatown in the 1950’s. Cycle through historical landmarks of the 1976 student uprisings and visit the memorial site of Hector Pieterson. You will also cycle down Vilakazi Street where Nelson Mandela used to live and where Bishop Desmon Tutu has his home. Stop for a local lunch - Kata (township Burger) and finish the tour off at the local sheeben, have a drink, play pool and dance to kwaito music.
You will be collected early this morning by your private guide. Depart Johannesburg and travel to the ‘Land of the Rising Sun – Mpumalanga – via the magnificent Panorama Route. Weather permitting, en route you will visit God’s Window, a boundless view of forested mountains and fertile plains, the Blyde River Canyon – the 3rd largest canyon in the world, and the extraordinary rock formations at Bourkes Luck Potholes.
The most spectacular stretch of the Panorama Route is the Blyde River Canyon. From many well-positioned vantage points one has a view of the 33 km long gorge, which starts at “Bourke’s Luck Potholes” and ends at the “Three Rondavels”. A stop will be made for lunch en route. Late afternoon arrival in the park.
This afternoon you'll meet up with others at the lodge and embark on your afternoon game drive. Sunrise and sunset are when the animals are most active. You'll be out in the reserve for a few hours before returning back to the lodge to freshen up for dinner. A private vehicle can be booked at an additional cost depending on availability.
Before first light, you'll meet up with others at the lodge and embark on your early morning game drive. Sunrise and sunset are when the animals are most active. You'll be out in the reserve for a few hours before returning back to the lodge for breakfast. A private vehicle can be booked at an additional cost depending on availability.
Take your flight from Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport to Durban today. The flight duration is approximately 1 hour.
Luggage restrictions applicable to this flight: Hand luggage: One piece not exceeding 8kg (18lb) and maximum dimension of 56cm (L) 36cm (W) 23cm (H). Checked luggage: One piece not exceeding 23 kg (50 lb) and maximum dimension of 158cm (62inches)
Enjoy a private transfer from your lodge to KMIA Airport. This trasfer will vary depending on the location of your lodge and can take 3 or more hours.
This morning you will embark on a brief Durban City Tour where you will spend the morning discovering the cultural and historical contrasts of the city. After departing your hotel, you travel along the "Golden Mile" with its beaches, curio sellers, rickshaw pullers and hotels. Arriving at the harbour entrance you stop for photos and a brief discussion on the origins of the city. A slow drive through the city centre offers an ideal opportunity to see the historic Farewell Square and the classic architecture of the City Hall, Central Post Office, Play House and Local History Museum. A drive along the winding Victoria Embankment is followed by a drive through the leafy suburbs of the Berea before your arrival at the Killie Campbell Museum, formerly the home of the Campbell family who were prominent philanthropists and collectors. A short tour follows and you will be taken through this grand old house with its beautiful furniture and art collection and the Mashu Museum of Ethnology, which includes artworks, cultural artefacts and an extensive beadwork collection reflecting the colourful and vigorous tradition of the Zulu people. After this fascinating interlude you make your way across the Berea to the stately Kings House and grand old homes of the area before arriving at the Botanic Gardens. Founded in 1849 as an agricultural society where various crops were grown on an experimental basis, the gardens are now home to an incredible variety of both exotic and indigenous flora as well as a number of varied resident birds.
This informative tour takes you just past the town of Eshowe, north of Durban, where you visit the authentic Shakaland Cultural Village. Here you will embark on a Nandi Experience, which is a three-hour midday experience, which includes lunch and introduces you to the beer drinking ceremony, fighting formations, social systems and greetings, the Sangoma and Nyanga, as well as beadwork, pottery, beer making and spear throwing techniques. Head back to Durban filled with renewed and interesting knowledge of the Zulu nation.
Private transfer to/from the City Hotels to the King Shaka International Airport.
Travel today between Durban and George. Flight time is approximately 2 hours.
Luggage restrictions applicable to this flight: Hand luggage: One piece not exceeding 8kg (18lb) and maximum dimension of 56cm (L) 36cm (W) 23cm (H). Checked luggage: One piece not exceeding 23 kg (50 lb) and maximum dimension of 158cm (62inches).
Your private guide and vehicle will be available today to take you around to different sights, suggest restaurants, etc.
After breakfast, depart to the lagoon-side town of Knysna. Enjoy some time at leisure at the Knsysa Waterfront Complex before embarking on an excursion to the Featherbed Nature Reserve. The trip includes a ferry across the lagoon to the base of the western head with a drive to the top of the reserve, stopping at spectacular viewpoints. Your specialist guide will provide information on history, fauna & flora. There is also an optional guided 2.2km walk through coastal forest and fynbos into ancient sea caves (on own account). The tour ends with a delicious buffet lunch served under the shade of the milkwood trees. On return to the mainland, continue on to your hotel.
After a spectacular drive over the Outeniqua Mountain Pass, you enter the red semi-desert of the Little Karoo. Start with a short tour of the town and then go on to the Cango Caves for a tour. 29km from Oudtshoorn, at the head of the picturesque Cango Valley, lay the spectacular underground wonder of the Klein Karoo - the Cango Caves. Situated in a limestone ridge parallel to the well known Wartburg Mountains, you will find the finest dripstone caverns, with their vast halls and towering formations. Enjoy a visit to the Cango Wildlife Ranch, endangered species breeding facility extraordinaire. The oldest and biggest cheetah contact centre worldwide offers visitors the rare opportunity of interacting with the hand reared cheetahs and getting actively involved in saving this species and others from extinction. From there you continue to the Safari Ostrich Farm to see one of the world’s most peculiar birds. Enjoy a tour of the farm, a traditional ostrich lunch (own cost) and perhaps even an ostrich race. Return back to the hotel late this afternoon
This morning your guide will collect you from the guesthouse and depart the Klein Karoo and the ostrich capital of Oudtshoorn. You will drive over the beautiful Franschhoek Pass, before you descending into beautiful Franschhoek Valley. Stop for the Impromptu wine tours, take pictures, grab a snack or shop, or head directly to Franshhoek. The direct drive will be approximately 5 hours depending on the number of stops made along the way.
Today your resident Winelands expert will join you for a full day exploration of the culinary delights of the Franschhoek Valley, including exceptional estates such as Haute Cabriere, Moreson, La Motte and Grande Provence. You will delight in cheese tasting in the 200 year old barn at La Grange Fromagerie, chocolate tasting at the Franschhoek Chocolate factory and lunch which has been booked for you at either La Petite Ferme or Grande Provence, depending on your preference (lunch on own account). Take time to explore the town by foot as the boutiques and art are exceptional. You will return to your hotel late this afternoon.
Today you embark on a full day tour of the Cape Peninsula. Starting in Franschhoek you make your way along the coast to Cape Town. You take in the beaches of Clifton and Camps Bay, before crossing over to Hout Bay, where you may choose to join an optional boat cruise to Seal Island. From here you drive to the Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve via Chapman’s Peak, one of the world’s most breathtaking coastal drives, where you will board a funicular to the top of the Peninsula to witness the symbolic meeting of the Indian and Atlantic Oceans as well as have spectacular views over False Bay. You enjoy lunch near here (not included – own account) before continuing to Simonstown, the naval base, and visiting the African Penguin breeding colony at Boulders Beach. Then continue on to Cape Town.
Today you will be met by your 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 (cable car fee is not included as it is weather dependent). On your descent, you stop at the Bo Kaap, home to the Cape Malay community, with its cobbled streets and brightly coloured houses.
Table Mountain Cableway will be closed for annual maintenance on Monday 28 July 14 to Sunday 10 August 14.
Enjoy time at leisure to explore at your own pace, or relax at your hotel.
Enjoy a private transfer between the airport and your hotel.
The Da Vinci Hotel and Suites is a contemporary masterpiece. This property is the Legacy’s group’s latest luxury hotel developed in a prime location of Nelson Mandela Square. This is Legacy's fourth hotel on the cosmopolitan square in the heart of the Sandton business and leisure district. One could speak of the opulence of the rooms, the restaurant and lounge, pioneering fitness centre and health spa but to truly understand all of this, you'll need to come and see it for yourself. Guests can enjoy the convenience of luxurious shopping at the Legacy Corner Mall and Sandton City just an elevator trip away. The Da Vinci offers 166 luxurious hotel rooms with all the wants and needs of the discerning traveller whether your trip is business of pleasure. With a unique open plan yet comfortably private layout, guests will be taken back by the sheer opulence.
Nottens's Bush Camp is a jewel within the heart of the Sabi Sand Game Reserve in Mpumalanga, which means “the land of the rising sun” in the locally spoken language, Shangaan. Notten’s is an exclusive and private safari lodge personally run by the Notten family. This beautiful, intimate safari lodge is situated within one of South Africa’s finest natural sanctuaries. A destination will truly touch your heart and soul. Each private suite is elegantly styled, spacious and cooled by ceiling fans. A magical atmosphere is created with the purposeful absence of electric lighting; the ambient candlelight and lanterns capture an enchanting spirit of romance. With splendid panoramic views, this private game lodge is the perfect place for peace and relaxation while watching animals meander past.
Standing majestically on Umhlanga’s prestigious beachfront on the eastern seaboard of KwaZulu-Natal, with sweeping views of the Indian Ocean and direct beach access, the Oyster Box Hotel is one of South Africa’s most distinguished hotels. Perfectly situated on the ocean’s edge, a brief 5 minutes walk from Umhlanga Village Centre, the Oyster Box Hotel is conveniently located for quick and easy access to Durban city centre, International Airports and numerous stylish shopping centres…yet has a feeling of classical charm and elegance like nowhere else on earth. From the moment the Oyster Box opened its doors in 1947 the hotel rapidly became one of Africa's best loved and most distinguished hotels. The combination of colonial charm, impeccable service, lush tropical gardens and breathtaking seaside setting swiftly gained it a reputation that was legendary the world over. The setting, the architecture, the décor, the cuisine – everything conspires to create a magical experience that affords a wealth of exceptionally pleasurable experiences and warm memories.
Enjoy an extra special experience at The Turbine Hotel and Spa, a five-star boutique hotel in Knysna. This exceptional boutique hotel is situated on Thesen Island, which is considered one of the most prestigious locations on the Garden Route. The Turbine Hotel and Spa was an ambitious project which transformed the old power station into a boutique hotel on the Garden Route, now with a massive wow-factor. All of the old machinery which was used in this power station has been creatively restored and forms an integral part of the hotel’s aesthetics. The Turbine Hotel and Spa offers 17 suites, 6 luxury suites, a honeymoon suite and the self-catering Water Club apartment. Dine at the Tapas Bar, serving delicious light meals for lunch and dinner. Wake up and savour a hearty breakfast at Island Café, also featuring lunch and dinner, as well as a wine cellar. The hotel features three bar areas located in various positions, each with their own unique setting. Relax and enjoy the panoramic views from the pool deck, conveniently equipped with sun loungers. The Amani Spa offers a wide variety of spa treatments for guests wishing to indulge in a rejuvenating spa experience.
Rosenhof Country House is situated on the outskirts of Oudtshoorn en route to the Cango Caves and Ostrich Farms. The carefully renovated homestead (Circa 1852), with its yellowwood beams and ceilings and a tasteful collection of antique furniture, exudes an aura of authenticity. The lovely rose garden, which gave Rosenhof its name, leads to stylishly decorated bedrooms, each individually furnished. All rooms provide air-conditioning, satellite television, telephone, mini bar and tea trays. The two Executive Suites each have their own pool, lounge and patio, with tranquil views of the Swartberg Mountain.Rosenhof has a cosy pub and several luxury lounges with fireplaces where visitors can relax and admire works from well-known South African artists. In summer, cool down in the pool or take tea in the manicured gardens. The Wellness Center offers a fully equipped gym, Jacuzzi, sauna and a beauty clinic. With its luxurious facilities and excellent service, Rosenhof is recognized as one of the finest establishments in the region.
Nestled in the heart of Franschhoek, Babylonstoren Hotel is an ideal spot from which to discover Franschhoek. From here, guests can enjoy easy access to all that the lively city has to offer. With its convenient location, the hotel offers easy access to the city's must-see destinations. Offering hotel guests superior services and a broad range of amenities, Babylonstoren Hotel is committed to ensuring that your stay is as comfortable as possible. While lodging at this wonderful property, guests can enjoy the restaurant, car parking, tours, airport transfers, and safety deposit boxes.
Welgelegen is an urban sanctuary that offers so much more than just overnight accommodation. The 13 individually styled en-suite bedrooms provide a quiet luxury that embodies the entire hotel. A spacious high-ceilinged sitting room and a cozy, rich library adjoin a grand breakfast room, all filled with contemporary furnishings and eclectic African art. The breakfast room opens out to a cobbled courtyard enclosed by ivy-draped walls that dips into a revitalising plunge pool, the perfect way for one to temper the sultry South African sun. The essential oils burn, the hearty African music resonates and the old Victorian build lends its old soul. One cannot help but feel at home, away from one’s own. Welgelegen is truly a sanctuary in the heart of town.
Shayna Maislin ,
April 21, 2014
"I would highly recommend the tour guide that we had in the Serengetti . He was extremely knowledgeable, very helpful and courteous. 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!"
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!"
Justin Yax ,
April 21, 2014
"Once again, a perfect trip. From Elizabeth's planning to Godfrey's guiding, we could not have asked for a more thorough and well planned safari. I can't wait to come back and do it again, this time with a Kilimanjaro climb added onto the trip!"
Nancy Frierson ,
April 21, 2014
"The entire trip was superb - all the transfers, the lodging and the food, the safari experience and the knowledgeable guides. The guide's ability to spot an animal and identify it at a great distance allowed us to see and photograph all the animals on our list and then some. The lodgings were even better than we had hoped and the staff could not possibly have been better. Our trip of a lifetime turned out to be just that."
Avi J.Moskovitz ,
February 03, 2014
"We finally returned from the most magical vacation in Morocco and we cannot thank Lily and Kensington Tours enough!! This trip was beyond amazing and we are so appreciative for everything done to make this trip happen last minute for us!
We had a spectacular tour guide that spoke 8 languages, Ismail, and the friendliest and warmest driver, Said, whom made the experience absolutely phenomenal! Not only did we learn and see, but we laughed, danced, ate like pigs, kissed camels and snakes, ran in the Sahara desert under the stars, and enjoyed life - the best gift of all!
Ebony Hoskins ,
October 18, 2013
"I am so happy that I used Kensington Tours to help with my dream trip to Cape Town South Africa. I was looking for a well respected tour company that planned private guided tours that was not going to cause me my leg, lol. I begin searching companies by reputation and value. I narrowed it down to Kensington Tours because of the quality and value. I felt taken care of prior to my departure due to the detailed itinerary.
From the time of got off the plane to the time I headed back to the states, I was in excellent hands. The service was EXCELLENT! I will definitely use Kensington again. Certainly, a trip of a lifetime!"
Hanne Jones ,
October 24, 2013
"I have travelled all my life. I've combed much of Europe, from The arctic north in Norway to the streets of Seville in Spain, the beaches of Cannes and Nice in France and the medieval heart of Bologna in Italy. I've been on two African safaris (one tented, one not), both "luxurious." I've been on more than a dozen jaunts to India, some guided, others not. Over the years I have discovered that I had rather be lost and disoriented in a foreign country than submit once again to the unbending schedule of a guided tour. Hence I had given up tours of any kind, until Molly Kelly, an American Express travel agent, suggested I might want simply to list the places my friends and I wished to see in Morocco then let Kensington Tours make accessing them in an orderly way not only possible but thoroughly enjoyable as well. And this Kensington Tours did. They pulled our disparate destinations together and designed a far, far better route than we could ever have done on our own. They satisfied all our requests and threw in delicious additions, areas of interest we had never considered or even heard of. Our accommodations were well within our means and wonderful. Our guide and driver, not to mention our Mercedes SUV, could not have pleased us more. In other words, thanks to Molly and her recommending Kensington Tours, we had a sensational holiday. "
Anthoula Korina ,
September 05, 2013
"Africa had always been a myth in mind since I was child that was up until a week ago. I just returned from an epic safari adventure! Kenya, Tanzania and the Maasai are sorely missed.
Words cannot fully express the magic of this ever-flowing journey. It was awe-inspiring, breathtaking, free and powerful. My mind keeps playing tricks on me; thinking rather hoping that I'm going to see a giraffe cross a busy NYC street :)
The memories will resonate for a lifetime. To boot, I went on this trip solo; female traveler. Not sure any of it would have been possible w/out Kensington Tours!!! Thank you..."
July 12, 2013
"I had a wonderful trip visiting the mountain gorillas in Uganda. We were able to get really close to the gorillas and watched their interactions with each other. The local people are so gracious and made every minute a delight. The accomodations were great. I loved waking up in the morning to the sounds of the forest. The added luxury of a massage was a great way to end the trip!"
July 26, 2013
"Our family of 6 traveled to Morocco for a 9 day Imperial cities discovery, I was absolutely amazing. Our guide Lahcen Zaaim was the best guide we have EVER had and we have traveled to many countries. There was not one subject that he was not knowledgeable about. He made the trip sooooo memorable. He was so flexible and when he picked us up in the mornings to head out, he was talking nonstop to tell us soo much about everything we were seeing. There was soooo much to see in Morocco and he made sure we saw it all.. He truly has a gift in the touring business, you feel as if your leaving your best friend when the trip is over. When we got to the airport in casablanca, he spotted us before we saw him and of course, we asked him, how did you recognize us? He even went as far as to get the King of Moroccos artist to meet us at our riad the night before we left to return home late to do our names in moroccan arabic to frame, They were beautiful, He showed us a picture of the Kings Face he had done for the Palace! Lily Baffour from Kensington planned our trip and she was amazing, planning everything as she thought we would like based on what I told her. She did an Outstanding job and literally sent our Iteniaries by next day air in a beautifully done spiral bound personally book for each family that was going on the trip, SOOOOOO IMPRESSED and she even got the guide we requested!!!! I cant say enough about this trip and Kensington, we will definitely use again!!! We experienced a VERY different culture in going to Morocco and thats what we wanted, a Very different exotic trip and thats what we got!!!! Again our accomodations we Top Notch, staying in the TRuly authenic Riads, they were SOOOOO Luxurious, Plan on taking another suitcase or buying one there because you will buy more things to bring home than any other trip because of all the Handicrafts there, especially in Fes!!!
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