On this scheduled tour, which departs on Sundays, you join other travellers in a group to explore the beauty and wildlife of South Africa’s Mpumalanga Province.
You first head to the scenic Panorama Route. Explore the Blyde River Canyon with a stop at the Three Rondavels Viewpoint. From there you head to God’s Window and The Pinnacle on the edge of the escarpment, before a last stop at Lisbon Falls. Your overnight establishment is located on the banks of the Sabie River in the town of Sabie.
From Sabie you descend to the Lowveld, below the escarpment. Near Hazyview you visit Elephant Whispers for an educational and interactive experience with elephants. Your next stop is not far away at Shangana Cultural Village where you are introduced to Shangaan culture and customs.
Departing Shangana you head to the Kruger National Park for your first game drive in the African wilderness. Your hotel is right next to the Park’s main entrance. Your third day is almost entirely spent in the Kruger National Park. You get to view a myriad of wildlife in the Park’s natural environment..
Late afternoon you exit the Park in the south (Malelane Gate) and travel to the nearby Mthethomusha Game Reserve, a mountainous Reserve on the southern border of Kruger where you overnight. Included is an afternoon and early-morning game drive.On your last day, before heading back to Johannesburg, you pay a visit to Kaapsehoop, known for its herds of wild horses.
R12,540 per person sharing
R2,425 single supplement (±US$ 171 )
Duration: 4 days , 3 nights
Tour Type: Scheduled tours
Luxury Level: ****
Accommodation: Accommodation in 4-star hotels and a private lodges.
Transport: Luxury sedan or minibus, depending on group size.
Group sizes: minimum-2 average-6 max-9
Languages (guides): English , German
Other languages on request with private-tour bookings..
Countries: South Africa
Highlights: Panorama Route , Blyde River Canyon , Kruger National Park , Elephant Whispers , Shangana Cultural Village , Mthethomusha Game Reserve , Kaapsehoop .
Starting dates: Departs Sundays from Johannesburg. Pick-up from: Rosebank hotels (±07:00), Sandton CBD hotels (±07:30), selected Airport hotels (±08:15).
Available starting dates: Nov 2014 - Oct 2015
Accomodation: Lone Creek River Lodge
Meals included: dinner
Attractions include: Panorama Route , Blyde River Canyon , Three Rondavels Viewpoint , God's Window , The Pinnacle , Sabie , Lisbon Falls .
You will be collected in the morning at your Johannesburg area hotel or the O.R. Tambo International Airport. Leave Johannesburg behind as you travel eastwards to Mpumalanga (’where the sun rises’).
Arriving in the small town of Dullstroom on the Mpumalanga Highveld you’ve reached an altitude of ±2 100m (±6 900ft). City dwellers favour the area for weekend breakaways. It features beautiful countryside, mountain streams, ponds brimming with trout and eateries galore. You’ll enjoy lunch somewhere enroute (own account).
The main focus for today is the Panorama Route, which includes a number of scenic vantage points. The Three Rondavels Viewpoint is perched high above the Blyde River Dam and Blyde River Canyon - providing spectacular views of both. It gets its name from three round buttresses on the opposite side of the Canyon, the site of a very interesting battle - which your guide will tell you about. A little further you cross the Treur (‘Sorrow’) and Blyde (‘Joy’) Rivers. Your guide will explain how the two rivers got their names.
Make a stop at God’s Window with views over the Lowveld far below. The vantage point is located on the edge of a steep escarpment. Nearby you view Pinnacle Rock, a 30m- / 100ft high freestanding quartzite buttress located in a lush ravine. Your day of beautiful scenery is rounded of with a visit to the Lisbon Falls.
Head to nearby Sabie, a logging and tourism town. Your accommodation for the night is located on the banks of the Sabie River. Dinner to be enjoyed at the lodge.
Destination: Protea Hotel Kruger Gate
Accomodation: Protea Hotel Kruger Gate
Meals included: breakfast and dinner
Attractions include: Kruger National Park , Elephant Whispers , Shangana Cultural Village , Hazyview .
After breakfast you travel down the escarpment to Elephant Whispers, one of a number of ‘elephant sanctuaries’ in Southern Africa. These sanctuaries source individual animals that has been orphaned in culling programmes years ago or come from similar situations. In-between limited scheduled human-animal interaction sessions the elephants are free to roam a couple of hectares of open land and bush. You have the privilege to meet and interact with elephant up close, though strict safety procedures are to be abided to. The experience is exhilarating, but also very educational - like bringing an animal weighing a couple of tons into your biology class…You get to feel an elephant’s thick skin, its trunk, etc.
Depart for the Shangana Cultural Village where you enjoy an educational tour of the traditional lifestyle of the Shangaan people of this region. Your Shangaan guide introduces you to cultural practices, customs, traditional dress and traditional architecture. During the tour you also get to meet the local ‘chief’ and ‘sangoma’ or traditional healer. Cultural villages in South Africa recreate the traditional form of life of different language groups, much of which are still practiced in deep rural areas.
Depart Shangana for the Kruger National Park, a short drive away. The afternoon is devoted to your first closed vehicle game drive in the African wilderness. The day ends at your hotel with a boma (open air) dinner (weather permitting). The hotel is located right on the western border of the Kruger Park, close to the main Kruger Gate entrance. It’s not uncommon for elephant to wander right up to the fence between the hotel and Kruger.
After breakfast check out of your hotel and enter the magical Kruger National Park at the main Kruger Gate entrance, literally a hundred metres or so from the hotel premises.. You spend most of the day doing game drives in the Park in your tour vehicle.
Lunch will be at one of the rest camps or picnic sites in the park (own account). The Kruger National Park is huge. It covers 19,485 square kilometres and the distance from its southern to northern borders is about 360km (±220km). It boasts a remarkable variety of fauna and flora. More than 500 bird and 147 mammal species have been identified. These include the ‘Big Five’ - lion, leopard, elephant, buffalo and rhino.
In the late afternoon you exit the Kruger at Malelane Gate in the south and head, via the town of Malelane, to Bongani Mountain Lodge (or similar) in the Mthethomusha Private Game Reserve. Enjoy an open vehicle game drive followed by dinner.
Your final day starts with an early-morning pre-breakfast game drive in the Mthethomusha Game Reserve. After breakfast you depart Kaapsehoop.
Kaapsehoop is a small and beautiful high-altitude village with views onto De Kaap Valley below. It got it’s name from a small alluvial gold deposit that was found in the local stream in the 19th century. The village is a popular weekend breakaway and is well known for herds of wild horses that occur there. You’ll take in the scenery at Kaapsehoop and also enjoy lunch there (own account).
From Kaapsehoop you head back towards Johannesburg along the main N4 highway. A couple of hours later, in the late afternoon, you’ll be returned to your hotel or the O.R. Tambo International Airport, with lots of memories to take with you.
Pre- or post-tour arrangements Should we be called upon to do so Africa Deluxe Tours will gladly assist you with accommodation and/or touring arrangements for the days before or after this tour.