(Johannesburg, Kapama Private Game Reserve)
(Andasibe-Mantadia National Park, Antananarivo)
The loud, distinctive song of the Indri lemur echoes throughout the tropical Madagascan rainforest as you tread an ancient path that time forgot.
Stop to rest at a remote waterfall as you continue your rainforest trek where you’ll spot the many breeds of lemur that are endemic to the island ecosystem of Madagascar. You’ll also explore the colonial history of Madagascar’s ancient capital city and encounter the island’s other iconic native resident at the Chameleon Sanctuary. On the mainland, a safari adventure awaits at Kruger National Park where you’ll spot the ‘Big Five’ as the sun sets behind the Drakensberg Mountains, and meet rescued animals up close at a local rehabilitation centre. In Johannesburg, you’ll take part in a guided tour of the Soweto township for a confronting but joyous view of the Rainbow Nation.
This remarkable tour places a firm focus on authenticity. From traditional African safari camps to forest lodges in Madagascar, your accommodation places you in the centre of the action. And experienced local rangers and trackers use their extensive knowledge and instinct to reveal all the sights and secrets of the wild as you get up-close to Africa’s most elusive wildlife.
Enjoy a personalized vacation that best suits your needs, developed by one of our experienced destination experts. Relax during your trip with our 24/7 support and expert local guidance.
Upon arrival into South Africa you will be met inside the airport and escorted through Customs and Immigration avoiding any queues.
Upon arrival you will receive all of your necessary documents for your trip which contains a detailed personalized itinerary, maps, restaurant suggestions, Top Tips for exploring each city or region and a 24 hour concierge service (for restaurant reservations, spa treatments, child minders, day tours etc).
A privately driven vehicle will provide you with a transfer between the Airport and your hotel, or vice versa, today.
Garden Court O.R. Tambo International Airport offers ultimate convenience and comfort located within a few minutes from the airport. This hotel is the ideal for travellers needing somewhere to rest during a stopover. omfortably appointed rooms offer spacious living, private bathrooms and amenities that appeal to the business and leisure traveller alike.
Take your flight from Johannesburg to Hoedspruit today. The flight duration is approximately 1 hour.
At about 3.30pm everybody convenes for high tea, before departing with the same ranger/tracker team for the day's second African bush safari. Enjoy a sundowner drink along the way (not included in the tariff), and get out of the vehicle to stretch your legs and watch the sun go down over the distant Drakensberg Mountains. As darkness descends it's time to return to the safety of the Landrover and let the tracker scan the landscape with a spotlight picking out the glinting eyes of nocturnal animals. Return to the lodge at around 7pm, where there is time to freshen up before dinner.
Reminiscent of a traditional African safari camp, Kapama Buffalo Camp offers a unique and intimate experience in the African bush. It is ideal for discovering big game Africa in true safari tented style without compromising on comfort.
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.
Two daily game drives are part of the fully inclusive tariff and your skilled ranger and tracker do their best to find the animals of Africa for you to admire. There are also many other species to be seen, large and small, as well as fascinating plants and colourful birds. Stop halfway through the morning game drive for hot drinks and rusks from the Landrover snack box and return at around 9am for breakfast. During the rest of the day, you are likely to see wildlife like nyala antelope and vervet monkeys around the lodges.
A guide will take you to the Hoedspruit Centre for Endangered Species facility where cheetah and a number of other rehabilitated animals can be viewed at close range. An educational video is shown to explain the projects undertaken by this unique establishment. A guided tour will follow to view the cheetah and other animals.
Get some African soil under your feet with a bush walk after breakfast. Explore the environment with your ranger, learn about curative properties of plants and identify animals from their footprints and dung. Large game is avoided when on foot but animals can often be seen from a safe distance. Please note that this will be done under ranger discretion.
Take your flight from Hoedspruit to Johannesburg today. The flight duration is approximately 1 hour.
Today enjoy a private tour of Soweto (South Western Township), a promitant historical township that is now the most populated suburb of South Africa. Soweto was propelled by the increasing eviction of Africans from Johannesburg city by state authorities during the mining area. Now this sprawling “city within a city” is home to many who work in various parts of the greater metropolitan area of the Witwatersrand. This tour shows you the major points of interest, such as the Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital, Baragwanath taxi rank, Freedom Square, Hector Pieterson Memorial and Nelson Mandela’s former home.
Fly from Johannesburg to Antananarivo. Flying time is approximately 3 hours.
Depart from the Madagascar capital, Antananarivo, and travel along the hillside twisty roads towards the Eastern part of the island. The first scheduled stop will be at the Pereyras reserve for the first glimpse of Madagascar’s unique biodiversity and fantastic Chameleon Sanctuary. Continue along to Andasibe-Mantadia National Park, where you will start this discovery tour of the nocturnal animals and primates that inhabit this unique and distinctive National Park.
The Lemur is a clade of strepsirrhine primates endemic to the island of Madagascar. The actually word "lemur" derives from the word lemures (ghosts or spirits) from Roman mythology, and was first used to describe the nocturnal habits and slow pace of certain creatures, which applied perfectly to the habitual primates of Madagascar. Shortly after humans arrived on the island of Madagascar some 2,000 years ago, there were some lemurs as large as a gorilla. Today, there are nearly 100 species of lemurs, and most of those species have been discovered or promoted to full species status since the 90's.
The Vakona Forest Lodge has been designed in an authentic, traditional Malagasy manner, boasting the architectural characteristics on the local buildings. Each of the 10 bungalows and 14 double rooms provide guests with en-suite bathrooms, and verandas. The dining room also offers a spectacular view of the forest as wells a cozy, warming fireplace.
Begin the day with a hike through the rainforest to discover the natural Malagasy flora and fauna, as well as the famous Indri lemurs. The Indri lemur which is one of the largest in size and has a lovey thick black and white coat. The indri is well known for its loud, distinctive songs, this helps you locate them within the forest. Other lemurs which can be seen in this area are the red-bellied lemur, brown lemur, lesser bamboo lemur. The park is also place for the nocturnal lemurs - brown mouse lemur, greater dwarf lemur, eastern woolly lemur, sportive lemur and if you are a lucky one, you might see the elusive nocturnal Aye Aye. Along the way, stop for some relaxation at a picturesque waterfall. This day tour is filled with beautiful landscapes and a variety of habitual wildlife.
Ranging in size from 30gm (1.1 oz) to 9 kg (20 lb), lemurs share many of the common primate traits, such as divergent digits on their hands and feet and nails instead of claws. However, their brain-to-body size ratio is smaller than that of anthropoid primates, and among many other traits they share with other primates, they have a "wet nose" (rhinarium). Lemurs are generally social and communicate more with scents and vocalizations than with visual signals. Many lemur adaptations are in response to Madagascar's highly seasonal environment.
Lemur research focused on taxonomy and specimen collection during the 18th and 19th centuries. Although field observations trickled in from early explorers, modern studies of lemur ecology and behavior did not begin in earnest until the 1950s and 1960s. Initially hindered by political instability and turmoil on Madagascar during the mid-1970s, field studies resumed in the 1980s and have greatly increased our understanding of these primates. Research facilities like the Duke Lemur Center have provided research opportunities under more controlled settings. Lemurs are important for research because their mix of primitive characteristics and traits shared with anthropoid primates can yield insights on primate and human evolution. However, many lemur species are threatened with extinction due to habitat loss and hunting. Although local traditions generally help protect lemurs and their forests, illegal logging, widespread poverty, and political instability hinder and undermine conservation efforts.
Before leaving Andasibe, visit a colony of Nile-crocodiles and some more indigenous lemurs. After lunch, a private vehicle will take you back to Antananarivo.
Enjoy a private vehicle transfer to/from the Antananarivo International Airport.
The Tamboho Hotel boasts an exceptional setting created by a combination of traditional African authenticity and modern upscale amenities. The hotel is located near a lot of Antananarivo Tana city area highlights including the Zoma, the Independence Avenue, the Queen's Palace Ranavalona, Tsimbazaza Zoo, the riches of nature and the Malagasy lemurs, Ambohimanga and his palace, and a variety of marketplaces boasting crafts, basketry, wood carvings, semi precious and precious stones. This 30 roomed hotel offers a restaurant boasting European cuisine and flavors of the islands, heated swimming pool and a la carte spa treatments. Enjoy the reception area design, its cozy atmosphere and quality services in an atmosphere Malagasy. With free WIFI connection, available throughout the building, Tamboho is one of the best hotels in Antananarivo Madagascar.
Begin this Madagascar adventure by exploring the capital and largest city in Madagascar. Discover the colonial history of this ancient city, and find out the reason why Antananarivo was once named "the city of a Thousand." Marvel at the goings on and the daily life routines of these Malagasy people. Highlights of this tour include a visit to the Old City sections, and the palace of the Queen, which will introduce you to the architecture and urbanism of this dynamic African city. No tour of the town is complete without a moment's pause on one of the hills to take in the view over the city. Finally, you might want to opt to visit the Tsimbazaza Zoo and Botanical Gardens, if time and energy allows.
VISA/PASSPORTEvidence of yellow fever immunization is required for all travelers who have been in an infected zone within 6 months of their arrival in Madagascar. A passport and visa are required for both US and Canadian ciitizens. Visas are available at all airports servicing international flights, but travelers who opt to obtain a visa at an airport should expect delays upon arrival. Visas obtained at the airport cannot be extended. Processing generally takes 5 working days. A Single Entry Visa with a validity of 30 days is for free and a Multiple Entry Visa costs approximately $166. Visa fees can be paid in US dollars, Euros or Madagascar Ariary. Credit cards are not accepted. All Americans and Canadians must have at least one blank page and 6 months validity in their passport to gain admittance to Madagascar.
Please note obtaining a visa is your responsibility. These requirements change often and therefore it is best that you check with the embassy of Madagaskar for the most up to date visa information
Most international flights arrive in Antananarivo, but there are some limited international flights to/from the nearby islands of Comoros, Mayotte and Reunion from airports in Mahajanga, Toamasina (Tamatave), Nosy Be, Tolagnaro (Ft. Dauphin) and Antsiranana (Diego Suarez). There are also direct flights between Italy and Nosy Be. . HEALTHHealth insurance is essential. Medical facilities are poor quality. We recommend that you see a health-care provider who specializes in Travel Medicine. The doctor or health-care provider will determine what vaccinations and medication you will need, depending on factors such as your health and immunization history, areas of the country you will be visiting, and planned activities. For more information on travel requirements, visit the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/madagascar.aspx COUNTRY INFOCapital: Antananarivo (formerly Tananarive). Government: Republic since 1992. Gained independence from France in 1960. Language: The official languages are Malagasy (which is related to Indonesian) and French. Local dialects are also spoken. English is not widely spoken. Religion: 52% follow animist beliefs; about 41% Christian; remainder Muslim. Time: GMT + 3. Electricity: Mostly 220 volts AC, 50Hz. Plugs are generally two-pin. Telephone: Country code +261 Mobile Telephone: Roaming agreements exist with international mobile phone companies. Coverage reaches major cities and main roads. Internet: Public Internet access exists in large cities; there are a few Internet cafes in Antananarivo.
VISA/PASSPORTVisitors to South Africa for tourism, short business meetings, or those in transit do not require visas for stays of up to 90 days. We recommend that the passports of all travelers to South Africa contain at least two completely blank (unstamped) visa pages each time entry is sought. These pages are in addition to the endorsement/amendment pages (as many as four) at the back of the passport. While South African statutes require only one completely blank visa page, this rule has been applied inconsistently by South African immigration officials. In addition, any trip to a neighboring country would necessitate another blank page upon return.
Please note obtaining a visa is your responsibility. These requirements change often and therefore it is best that you check with the embassy of South Africa for the most up to date visa information.
HEALTHHealth insurance is recommended. Medical facilities are relatively wide spread and good quality. We recommend that you see a health-care provider who specializes in Travel Medicine. The doctor or health-care provider will determine what vaccinations and medication you will need, depending on factors such as your health and immunization history, areas of the country you will be visiting, and planned activities. For more information on travel requirements, visit the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website: http://wwwn.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/south-africa.aspx COUNTRY INFOCapital: Pretoria (administrative). Government: Republic. Gained independence from the UK in 1910. Language: The official languages are Afrikaans, English, isiNdebele, isiXhosa, isiZulu, Sepedi, Sesotho, Setswana, Siswati, Tshivenda and Xitsonga. Religion: Most inhabitants profess Christianity. There are also Hindu, Muslim and Jewish communities, and traditional beliefs are still practiced widely, sometimes in conjunction with Christianity. Time: GMT + 2. Electricity: 220/240 volts AC; 250 volts AC (Pretoria), 50Hz. Three-pin round plugs are in use. Telephone: Country code +27. Area codes are used even if you are making a call in the same area. Mobile Telephone: Roaming agreements exist with international mobile phone companies. Coverage extends to most of the country except in the very remote areas. Internet: Internet cafes are present around the country and wireless is available at airports and in upmarket hotels.
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