The Great Wildlife Expedition includes some of the most scenic areas in the country, but the main focus is on the almost 5 days of wildlife viewing including two private reserves and the famous Kruger National Park. It also includes a boat cruise on Lake St Lucia, situated in the iSimangaliso world heritage site! The scenery includes the Panorama Route, Swaziland mountains and the Zululand forests and lakes.
DAY 1. Johannesburg – Panoramic Route (Wildlife Safari Tour)
Our first day on this amazing wildlife safari tour takes us from Johannesburg via Middelburg, Dullstroom and Robber’s Pass to Pilgrim´s Rest, the early gold mining town turned into a living museum. Rich deposits of alluvial gold were found here at the end of the 19th century, hence the existence of the town deep in the mountains. After exploring this quaint old town, we continue to Sabie where we have a pleasant walk through indigenous forest to visit Lone Creek Falls Overnight Ligna Lodge. (Dinner included).
DAY 2. Panoramic Route – Private Reserve
After breakfast, travel via Graskop to marvel at scenic areas such the Pinnacle, God’s Window and Lisbon Falls. Then on to Bourke’s Luck Potholes (a walk down the hill to this unique trick of nature is worth the effort), and the magnificent Three Rondavels view site at the Blyde River Canyon. We walk along the cliffs to really appreciate the breathtaking views. Later, we descend to the Lowveld via Abel Erasmus pass and the Strijdom Tunnel. Arrive at Mohlabetsi in the Balule private game reserve, a part of the Greater Kruger National Park. This afternoon our encounter with Africa’s wildlife begins as we travel on an open vehicle to search for the game. Enjoy a great dinner under the stars tonight (weather permitting). Overnight Mohlabetsi Safari Lodge (Breakfast, lunch and dinner included).
DAY 3. Private Reserve – Kruger National Park
After an early morning open vehicle game drive, you enjoy breakfast an then leave for the Kruger National Park. Spend the day in this magnificent reserve around 2 million ha in extent. You overnight in chalets at one of the rest camps in the park. Overnight Skukuza Camp Bungalows (Breakfast and dinner included).
DAY 4. Kruger National Park – eSwathini (formerly Swaziland)
An early rise for a game drive and have breakfast on a deck overlooking the Sabie River. You spend the rest of the morning in the reserve and depart for the mountain Kingdom of Swaziland. From here travel via Piggs Peak through magnificent mountain scenery and visit the Ngwenya glass factory where all the products are hand made from recycled glass. We drive through Mbabane, the capital of Swaziland, before travelling to our overnight stop, the Foresters Arms Hotel, in the mountains just outside Mhlambanyatsi (Breakfast and dinner included).
DAY 5. eSwathini – Zululand – Private Reserve
This morning we have an early breakfast and then visit Swazi Candles in the Malkerns Valley where we watch the locals hand-moulding wax into a variety of interesting shapes. On this site there is also a market where the locals sell their craft, as well as other shops where you can buy items like batik, hand-woven cloth, colourful handbags, etc. Continue along the Ezulwini Valley towards Manzini, the country’s industrial centre, and then swing south towards Nhlangano on a scenic route where crossing every hill opens up a new vista. Exit Swaziland at the Onverwacht border post. Now in Zululand, travel southwards to Hluhluwe and arrive at our private lodge for check-in. Then we embark on another exiting open vehicle safari this afternoon. We return for a well-deserved dinner and overnight. Overnight Zulu Nyala Game Lodge (Breakfast and dinner included).
DAY 6. Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Park – St Lucia (iSimangaliso) – Durban
After an early breakfast, we travel to Hluhluwe Imfolozi Reserve and enter the reserve for another two hours of great viewing in the Big Five Reserve where the white rhino was saved from extinction. From her we travel to the village of St Lucia and join a boat cruise on the estuary of the famous Lake St Lucia (proclaimed a World Heritage Site in 1999). The lake is a wildlife paradise with bird species such as fish eagle, Goliath heron and many more. Your skipper/guide will show you the world of the hippo and the crocodile and the other mystic inhabitants of the “deep”. After this unforgettable experience we travel to Durban, South Africa’s holiday Mecca, where our tour ends (Breakfast included included).
OTHER TOURS YOU MAY BE INTERESTED IN
6 Day Great Wildlife Expedition (Code: SCMJ) Durban to Johannesburg
11 Day Taste of South Africa (Code: SC-02) Johannesburg to Cape Town