21-day Cape Town to Victoria Falls Grand Explorer

All-encompassing, action-packed and epic: if you’re seeking a classic Southern African adventure, you can’t beat the journey from Cape Town to Victoria Falls. On the way, take in the best parts of Namibia and Botswana. From sunset at Fish River Canyon to early mornings in Etosha National Park, to days on the Okavango Delta – this overland odyssey rings the changes in every country.

DEPARTS:  CAPE TOWN on Wednesday at 08:00am
ENDS: VICTORIA FALLS, ZIMBABWE on Tuesday at 08:00am

Highlights
* Cape Town – Cape Point day tour
* Fish River Canyon – walking
* Namib Desert – Sossusvlei dunes
* Swakopmund – optional activities i.e.dune boarding & quad biking
* Etosha National Park – game drives
* Okavango Delta – mokoro excursion
* Chobe National Park – game drive & full day river cruise
* Victoria Falls – tour the Falls & optional activities

Overnight 19 nights on safari we stay at guest houses, chalets and small lodges including tented lodges, with en-suite facilities. 1 night in the Cederberg where chalets with two bedrooms share a bathroom.

Meals 20 breakfasts, 17 lunches and 11 dinners are included. Of which 7 breakfasts are provided by the lodges. The remaining included meals are provided by the Sunway crew, prepared at the vehicle & eaten around the campfire or at the boma.

Transport for the majority of this safari you travel in custom-built Sunway Safari trucks with 12 forward-facing seats.  There are some long stretches of gravel road in Namibia, but they are generally well maintained and cruising speed is good.

Limited participation an essential part of your safari is some participation. From carrying your own bag to packing the truck in the morning – it’s all part of your adventure. There are some long days with early starts so we all need to get involved to make the trip run efficiently. Where the tour leaders provide meals, we ask that clients help (on rotation) with the washing up (the local polers will assist in the delta to make things easier).

Highlights

  • Cape Town
  • Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
  • Cederberg
  • Orange River
  • Fish River Canyon
  • Sesriem
  • Swakopmund
  • Brandberg
  • Etosha South
  • Windhoek
  • Ghanzi
  • Guma Lagoon
  • Maun
  • Nata
  • Chobe River Front
  • Zimbabwe
  • South Africa
  • Namibia
  • Botswana

Tour Summary

Full Day by Day Itinerary

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Day 1 : Cape Town

Cape Town is one of the most picturesque cities in the world, with the majestic Table Mountain providing its central focus. Departing, after a tour briefing, from Cape Town at 08:00am we visit Hout Bay harbour en route to Cape Point Nature Reserve and then the African Penguin colony at Boulders Beach. We sample some of Cape Town’s culinary wonders at a local restaurant in the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront (own expense).

Day 1: Breakfast is not included
Day 1: Lunch is an own expense meal
Day 1: Dinner is an own expense meal

Includes:     Entrance fees to Penguin colony & Cape Nature Point.
Distance/time:    ±150km, 3h30 actual driving time, but with stops, penguins and lunch is a full day out.
Overnight:    City Lodge V&A Waterfront – twin rooms with en suite facilities. Restaurant, bar, gym and swimming pool.

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Day 2 : Cederberg

(B=breakfast, L=Lunch D=Dinner)
The Cederberg is a massive rock wilderness with giant sandstone boulders that have been sculpted by wind and rain into bizarre and artistic shapes. We head north to the Cederberg and explore the rugged landscape on foot before relaxing in chalets for the evening.

Day 2: Breakfast provided by the guest house
Day 2: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 2: Dinner provided by tour leaders with the help of the group

Includes:     Entrance fees, and walk in the Cedarberg
Distance/time:    ±250km, 3h30 actual driving time, it's a relatively short hop north and we expect a total travel day of ±4h30
Overnight:    Western Cape Nature Conservation – 2 twin share bedrooms in each chalet with 1 bathroom shared between 2 rooms. WiFi not available

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Day 3 : Orange River

[lodge BLD]
We make our way into the more arid regions and upon entering Namibia, we stay at a lodge on the Gariep River. Namibia’s southern border river flows quietly and peacefully and the river valley is hardly affected by tourism. The riverbed is sandy, the water clean and clear. Time free for swimming and relaxing or you can venture down the river in canoes (own expense).

Day 3: Breakfast provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 3: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 3: Dinner provided by tour leaders with the help of the group

Includes:     N/A
Distance/time:    ±500km, 7h00 actual driving time, today is a stretch and with a border crossing (variable) we expect a travel day of ±9h00
Optional Activities    Half day canoe safari
Overnight:    Felix Unite, twin share cabanas with en suite facilities. Bar, restaurant, telephone. Internet cafe available

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Day 4 : Fish River Canyon

[lodge BLD]
The Fish River Canyon, situated along the lower reaches of the Fish River, is one of the most impressive natural beauties in the southern part of Namibia. With its depth of up to 550 metres, the Fish River Canyon is the second largest canyon in the world. We make our way to the canyon and in the afternoon watch a spectacular sunset as the sun slips over the canyon’s rim.

Day 4: Breakfast provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 4: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 4: Dinner provided by tour leaders with the help of the group

Includes:     Entrance fees to look out point at Fish River Canyon.
Distance/time:    ±300km, 4h00 actual driving time, our first long gravel sections, we expect a total travel day of ±4h00.
Overnight:    Seeheim Hotel – twin share chalet with en suite facilities. WiFi not available.

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Day 5 – 6 : Sesriem

[lodge BLD]
The parched Namib Desert has endless orange dunes blown into sharp ridges by the sand-shifting wind and at Sossusvlei, they form a gateway into the Namib Desert. We will walk to Sossusvlei, explore Sesriem Canyon and from the comfort of our lodge outside the national park watch dramatic sunsets over the world’s highest sand dunes. (If you prefer not to do the 4km walk to Sossusvlei there is an optional own expense 4WD transfer)

Day 5, 6: Breakfast provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 5, 6: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 5, 6: Dinner provided by tour leaders with the help of the group

Includes:     Entrance fees to Sesriem Canyon and Naukluft National Park
Distance/time:    ±550km, 7h00 actual driving time, through magnificent scenery but it's long total travel day of ±9h00
Optional Activities:    On arrival at Sossusvlei the guide will walk with the group into Sossusvlei (+/- 3.5km).  For those clients who do not want to walk, there are 4WD vehicles that can drive you in.  The 4WD is an own expense (+/- N$85 each way) and is optional.
Overnight:    Desert Camp – twin share permanent tents with en suite facilities. Restaurant, swimming pool & bar. WiFi not available

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Day 7 – 8 : Swakopmund

[hotel pension Bx2 Lx1-]
Swakopmund is a popular seaside resort with a slightly nostalgic atmosphere, characterised by numerous colonial buildings. In terms of flora, both the Welwitschia Mirabilis and the Kokerboom grow on the stony plains of the Namib and many beautiful specimens surround this coastal town. Swakopmund is also the adventure activity capital of Namibia. Day free to explore the town or try dune boarding or sea kayaking (own expense).

Day 7: Breakfast provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 7: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 7: Dinner will be an own expense meal at a local restaurant

Day 8: Breakfast provided by the guest house
Day 8: Lunch will be an own expense meal
Day 8: Dinner will be an own expense meal at a local restaurant

Includes:     N/A
Distance/time:    ±350km, 5h00 actual driving time, this gravel road is very rough and we expect a total travel day of ±8h00
Optional Activities:    Sand boarding, Skydiving, Ocean canoe safari, Scenic flights & many more
Overnight:    Hotel Pension a la Mer - twin share standard rooms with en suite facilities. Telephone & restaurant. WiFi in the main building

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Day 9 : Brandberg

[chalet BLD]
Namibia is a land of great contrasts and Damaraland demonstrates this with stark plains, petrified forests and ancient valleys leading to rocky outcrops and the soaring peaks of the Brandberg Massif Mountains.

Day 9: Breakfast provided by the guest house
Day 9: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 9: Dinner provided by tour leaders with the help of the group

Includes:         Entrance fees to Cape Cross Seal colony, San Rock Art.
Distance/time:    ±350km, 6h00 actual driving time, starting on a "salt" road. The road is generally quite good, for a total travel day of ±7h00.
Overnight:    Brandberg White Lady Lodge – twin share chalets with en-suite facilities, bar, restaurant & swimming pool. WiFi not available.

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Day 10 – 11 : Etosha South

[guest lodge BLD]
Once a vast lake fed by the Kunene River, the pan that is Etosha NP dried up thousands of years ago when the river waters chose a new course. Etosha is big game country. We take game drives around the huge pan to find the elephants, herds of antelope and lions around the waterholes. We stay at a lodge on the outskirts of the national park.

Day 10, 11: Breakfast provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 10, 11: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 10, 11: Dinner provided by tour leaders with the help of the group

Includes:     Entrance fees to Etosha National Park, full day game drive in Etosha NP.
Distance/time:    ±400km, 5h30 actual driving time, the road can be rough and with an afternoon game drive in Etosha we expect a total of ±8h30 in the vehicle.
Overnight:    Tarentaal Guest Farm – private working farm outside Etosha National Park. Twin rooms with en-suite facilities. Swimming pool, bar & telephone. (35km/25min from Anderson Gate to Etosha). WiFi not available.

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Day 12 : Windhoek

[guest house BL-]
This pretty town, beautifully situated in a valley, combines the architecture of a modern city with numerous buildings in the style of the German colonial era. The charm of the city of Windhoek lies in its harmonious blend of African and European cultures and the friendliness of its people. We visit the cosmopolitan capital and enjoy a restaurant meal (own expense).

Day 12: Breakfast provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 12: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 12: Dinner will be an own expense meal at a local restaurant

Includes:     N/A
Distance/time:    ±400km, 5h00 actual driving time, good tarmac road and a stop for market shopping, we expect a total travel day of ±6h00.
Overnight:    Klein Windhoek Guest House – twin rooms with en-suite facilities, swimming pool, restaurant & bar. WiFi available.

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Day 13 : Ghanzi

[chalet BLD]
Crossing into Botswana we overnight in huts in the heart of the Kalahari. We take a walk with the local Bushmen to learn fascinating bush skills.

Day 13: Breakfast provided by the guest house
Day 13: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 13: Dinner provided by tour leaders with the help of the group

Includes:     Nature walk with local San bushman.
Distance/time:    ±550km, 7h30 actual driving time, an early start, good tarmac road but it's a long way and with border formalities we expect a total travel day of ±8h30.
Overnight:    Ghanzi Trail Blazers – en-suite rooms. WiFi not available.

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Day 14 – 15 : Guma Lagoon

[lodge BLD]
The Okavango Delta is the only inland delta in the world: the annual flood of fresh water spreads over 15000sq km of the Kalahari sand in a maze of lagoons and channels. We journey to the western floodplains of the Okavango Delta to our lodge overlooking a permanent lagoon, where we enjoy a game walk, a mokoro excursion and the amazing birdlife in this pristine wilderness area.

Day 14, 15: Breakfast provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 14, 15: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 14, 15: Dinner provided by tour leaders with the help of the group

Includes:     Entrance to Okavango Delta, game walk and Mokoro excursion.
Distance/time:    ±400km, 5h30 actual driving time, as we skirt the Okavango the road can be very potholed, so we expect a travel day of ±7h00.
Overnight:    2 nights Okavango Delta, Guma Lagoon – twin en-suite canvas chalets. Swimming pool, bar, restaurant. Wifi available in lounge.

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Day 16 : Maun

[lodge BL -]
Making our way around the Okavango we head to Maun where we have an evening meal at a local restaurant (own expense).

Day 16: Breakfast provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 16: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 16: Dinner will be an own expense meal at a local restaurant

Includes:
Distance/time:    ±300km, 4h30 actual driving time, we make our way around the Delta on a partly potholed road, we expect a travel day of ±5h00.
Optional Activities:    Scenic flight over the Okavango Delta (+/-USD120-150) pp depending on number of people in each aircraft).
Overnight:    Island Safari Lodge – standard twin rooms with en suite facilities. Swimming pool, bar, restaurant, telephone. WiFi available.

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Day 17 : Nata

[tented lodge or chalet BL-]
The shimmering saltpans of Makgadikgadi are the size of Switzerland and most of the time appear as a glaring, white, endless plain. When the rain comes a dramatic change takes place as the pans come to life with frantically feeding water birds and great herds of zebra, wildebeest and springbok.

Day 17: Breakfast will be provided by the lodge
Day 17: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 17: Dinner will be an own expense meal

Includes:     Entrance fees to Makgadikgadi Pans.
Distance/time:    ±320km, 4h00 actual driving time, we cross wide open expanses and we expect a travel day of ±4h30.
Overnight:    Nata Lodge – twin share luxury tents with en suite facilities, swimming pool, restaurant & bar. Swimming pool, bar, restaurant, telephone. WiFi not available / internet café available. (or Pelican Lodge,– twin share rooms with en suite facilities. Swimming pool, bar, restaurant, telephone).

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Day 18 – 19 : Chobe River Front

[chalet BL-]
Chobe National Park is famous for large herds of elephant and buffalo. We explore the national park on a morning game drive and spend the rest of the day on the river, enjoying lunch on our cruise boat with spectacular wildlife viewing.

Day 18: Breakfast provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 18: Lunch provided by tour leaders with the help of the group
Day 18: Dinner will be an own expense meal

Day 19: Breakfast will be provided by the lodge
Day 19: Lunch will be provided by the cruise
Day 19: Dinner will be an own expense meal

Includes:     Chobe NP entrance fee, 3 hour morning game drive + a full day river cruise in Chobe NP.
Distance/time:    ±320km, 4h00 actual driving time, after a leisurely start we head north for an easy transfer, we expect a travel day of ±4h30.
Overnight:    Thebe River Safaris – twin chalets with en-suite facilities. Swimming pool, bar, restaurant, telephone. WiFi available.

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Day 20 : Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

[chalet Bx2 - -]
Magnificent Victoria Falls is one of the seven natural wonders of the world. David Livingstone ‘discovered’ the falls in 1885 and named them after his Queen. The scene he encountered was a mile-wide (1.6 km) sheer basalt fault line over which the mighty Zambezi tumbled to a depth of 100m, creating a cloud of spray. The falls are also the centre of a wide range of activities, including white water rafting on the mighty Zambezi, scenic flights or a 111m bungi jump (own expense).

Day 20: Breakfast will be provided by the lodge
Day 20: Lunch will be an own expense meal
Day 20: Dinner will be an own expense meal

Includes:     Entrance fees to Vic Falls.
Distance/time:    ±70km, 1h00 actual driving time. It's not a long way, but the border can be busy and slow so we anticipate a total travel day of ±3h00.
Optional Activities    White water rafting, sunset cruises, scenic flights & many more.
Overnight:    Shearwater Explorers Village, twin rooms with en-suite facilities. Swimming pool, restaurant, bar and telephone. WiFi available.

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Day 21 : Departure

Tour ends at 08:00 am at the hotel.

Day 21: Breakfast will be provided by the lodge
Day 21: N/A
Day 21: N/A

Included

Accommodation as per itinerary
Meals as per itinerary
Transport
Professional guides

Excluded

International flights
Pre / Post tour accommodation
Airport transfers
Travel insurance
Visas
Vaccinations
Gratuities
Optional activities