South Africa Walking Adventure

South Africa Walking Adventure

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14 Days From

$2348

$2242

South Africa Walking Adventure

14 Days Starting and ending in Johannesburg

Visiting: South Africa

Tour operator:

World Expeditions

Tour code:

SAW

Guide Type:

Fully Guided

Group size:

4 - 12

Physical rating:

Introductory to Moderate

From:
$2348
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NB: Prices correct on 24-May-2024 but subject to change.

This tour is no longer available, please see similar tours below or send an enquiry

Tour Overview

This spectacular journey offers the perfect mix of walking, game viewing and history amongst the stunning diverse landscapes of the northern region of South Africa. During a series of selected day walks of varying grades, we explore the Drakensberg Mountains which is the highest range in South Africa, including a strenuous ascent of the Amphitheatre. We undertake mountain walks and cultural sightseeing along the Mpumalanga Panorama Route, Blyde River Canyon and Zululand, and visit the fascinating kingdom of Swaziland (eSwatini). Our South Africa adventure is complete with a game walk and game drives in search of the 'Big Five' in the renowned Kruger National Park.

Highlights

  • Enjoy mountain walks in the Drakensberg Mountains, including an ascent of the Amphitheatre

  • Search for wildlife on a walking safari and game drives in Kruger National Park

  • Experience the Mpumalanga Panorama Route

  • Explore the historical battlefields of Zululand

  • Discover the rich cultural heritage of Swaziland (eSwatini)

  • Behold the scenic views on a walk in the Blyde River Canyon

Itinerary

Expand All

Day 1 : Join Johannesburg, Early Morning Drive To Mpumalanga (460 Kms; 6-7 Hrs)

Meals Included: L, D

After the tour briefing at 06:30am, we depart Johannesburg and head east towards Mpumalanga. During the afternoon we visit the gold mining town of Pilgrims Rest, and the viewpoint over God’s Window. Stretch our legs on a short walk from Mac Mac Pools and then make our way to our chalets on the edge of the escarpment for overnight. Walk grade/time: Easy; 1 hr.
NB: Lunch will be provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group; Dinner will be provided by the lodge.

Day 2 : Blyde River Canyon

Meals Included: B, L, D

Blyde River Canyon is our first long morning walk as we make our way from the rim down into the canyon with views over the Three Sisters and the river below. After lunch we spend the afternoon exploring the forests and waterfalls which make Mpumalanga a beautiful destination. Overnight chalet. Walk grade/time: Moderate; 3.5-4 hrs. Ascent/descent: +331m; -331m.
NB: Breakfast and Lunch will be provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group; Dinner will be provided by the lodge.

Day 3 : Kruger National Park (270 Kms; 5-6 Hrs)

Meals Included: B, L, D

After an early breakfast, we make our way to Kruger National Park. This is Big game country, where we spend the day in search of the elusive leopard, the majestic lion and the mighty elephant. We enter the national park and spend the day on an exciting game drive through the reserve as your professional guides will impart their extensive knowledge of ecology, fauna and flora. In the late afternoon we exit the park and make our way to our private game lodge in the Greater Kruger area. A highlight of our tour is the early morning game walk with a local ranger the next day (3-4 hrs). Quietly we venture into the bush, learning the tracks and other signs of the wildlife we hope to track on foot. Overnight lodge. Walk grade/time: Easy; 3-4 hrs.
Day 3: Breakfast and Lunch will be provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group; Dinner will be provided by the lodge.
Day 4: Breakfast and Dinner will be provided by the lodge; Lunch will be provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group.

Day 5 : Kingdom Of Swaziland / Eswatini (330 Kms; 5-6 Hrs)

Meals Included: B, L, D

We enter the Kingdom of Swaziland (eSwatini) and travel through a lush fruit farming area before heading into the mountains. We spend 2 nights on the outskirts of Malalotja Nature Reserve with a full day to walk through this seldom explored mountainous reserve to a beautiful waterfall. The Swazi people have a rich cultural heritage and we will visit the craft markets on day 7 as we pass through the capital, Mbabane. Overnight mountain chalet. Walk grade/time: Strenuous; 4-6 hrs. Ascent/descent: +572m; -573m.
NOTE - Driving distance/time (330 kms, 5-6 hrs) excludes 2-3 hour morning drive out of Kruger National Park, shopping stop in Malelane, Jeppes Reef border formalities & stops for meals, sightseeing etc.
Day 5: Breakfast & Lunch will be provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group; Dinner will be a set meal provided by the lodge.
Day 6: Breakfast will be provided by the lodge; Lunch will be provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group; Dinner will be a set meal provided by the lodge.

Day 7 : Hluhluwe Game Reserve And Msinene River (320 Kms; 6 Hrs)

Meals Included: B, L, D

Crossing back into South Africa we head towards our lodge on a private game reserve situated on the Msinene Nature Reserve. We take a walk with our local walking guide who will point out some of the 540+ bird species found in the area and track the shy Nyala antelope in the riverine vegetation of the Msinene River. The following morning, we visit Hluhluwe Game Reserve, a key area for rhino conservation. Enjoy the sunset and the sounds of the bush before a hearty dinner at the lodge. Overnight permanent safari camp. Walk grade/time: Easy; 2-3 hrs.
NOTE - Driving distance/time (320 kms, 6 hrs) excludes border formalities & stops for meals, sightseeing etc.
NB: Breakfast & Dinner will be provided by the lodge; Lunch will be provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group.

Day 9 : Zululand (330 Kms; 5.5 Hrs)

Meals Included: B, L

We make our way through the scenic hills and valleys of Zululand to the small town of Dundee. Here battles were fought between the Zulus, British and the Boer troops - war cries still resound in the hills. We spend time at the informative Tulana museum before we settle into our lodge and have some free time in the afternoon. On Day 10, we explore the Islandlwana battlefield before we embark on an exciting hike tracing the steps of the two British fugitives through the undulating hills of Zululand to the Buffalo River. Later in the day we visit Rourkes Drift before returning to our accommodation. Overnight chalet. Walk grade/time: Strenuous; 4-5 hrs. Ascent/descent: +129m; -200m.
NB: Breakfast will be provided by the lodge; Lunch will be provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group; Dinner will be at your own expense (meal in lodge restaurant).

Day 11 : Drakensberg Mountains (120 Kms; 2.5 Hrs)

Meals Included: B, L, D

Witness the grandeur of the Drakensberg Mountains or uKhahlamba “Barrier of Spears”. We overnight at the base of the “berg” (alt. 1,600m) and spend a full day walking the mountain trails up the Tugela gorge, before taking an invigorating dip in the clear mountain streams of the Royal Natal National Park. The crisp mountain air is refreshing and our accommodation is a fantastic place to relax and enjoy the splendour of the mountain views. Overnight chalet. Walk grade/time: Moderate; 5.5 hrs. Ascent/descent: +859m; -856m.
Day 11: Breakfast will be provided by the lodge; Lunch & Dinner will be provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group.
Day 12: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner will be provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group

Day 13 : Ascend The Amphitheatre, Drakensberg Mountains (120 Kms; 2 Hrs)

Meals Included: B, L

We start the day with an early breakfast and make our way to Witsieshoek at the foot of the magnificent Sentinel Peak. At the end of a rough gravel road we start our trek, including two short chain ladder sections, to the top of the Drakensberg Amphitheatre and the beautiful Tugela Falls (alt. 3,000m), offering unparalleled views down into KwaZulu-Natal. After our walk we make our way to our accommodation perched high in the mountains (alt. 2,300m) overlooking the Mont-Aux-Sources mountain range. Overnight chalet. Walk grade/time: Strenuous; 5-6 hrs. Ascent/descent: +789m; -794m.
NB: Breakfast & Lunch will be provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group; Dinner will be at your own expense (meal in lodge restaurant).

Day 14 : Drive To Johannesburg (360 Kms; 5-6 Hrs)

Meals Included: B, L

A leisurely start to the day, with the chance to spot the endangered bearded vulture soaring overhead, before we make our way back to Johannesburg. Our tour ends at approximately 18:00 in Johannesburg. Please note: we can do a free drop off at OR Tambo Johannesburg Airport at around 17:00pm so you can book your flight out for the last day of the tour.
NB: Breakfast will be provided by the lodge; Lunch will be provided by the tour leaders with the help of the group.

What's Included

  • Accommodation
    11 nights hotel/lodge/guesthouse

  • 13 breakfasts, 14 lunches and 10 dinners

  • 2 nights in permanent safari camps on a twinshare basis

  • 11 nights in comfortable hotels, lodges and guesthouses on a twinshare basis

  • Game drives, day walks and excursions as listed in itinerary

  • English speaking local guide

  • National park fees and site entrance fees as listed in itinerary

  • Private transport in minibus / safari truck

What's Not Included

  • Optional activities

  • Items of a personal nature (i.e laundry, phone calls, tips, etc)

  • Bottled water, aerated and alcoholic drinks

  • International flights and taxes

  • Airport and departure taxes

  • Visas

  • Travel Insurance (compulsory)

  • Airport arrival and departure transfers

  • Meals not mentioned in the itinerary

  • Tips & gratuities

Accommodation

11 nights hotel/lodge/guesthouse
11 nights hotel/lodge/guesthouse and 2 nights permanent safari camp on a twinshare basis. We stay in comfortable and basic twin rooms with ensuite bathrooms (or occasionally shared ablutions); some have bars and swimming pools. Meals will be prepared by the tour leaders.
ROOM REQUESTS: On this trip, twin-bedded rooms are very common and double beds are either not available or limited in numbers. We can always request double beds upon arrival at each accommodation, but there is never any guarantee.

What You Carry

In your daypack you will need to carry extra warm clothing (it can be very cold on early morning activities), a rainjacket, water bottle, camera gear, valuables and personal items such as sunscreen, lip balm etc.

Grading

This trip involves 8 day walks of varying grades (easy to strenuous) through undulating open country and unsurfaced paths ranging from 1 - 6 hours a day at a steady pace. To undertake this level of activity you will need a good level of fitness and be surefooted. Some days involve hard walking or scrambling over rugged and steep terrain, including boulders, scree, rocky ground, and grasslands. Chain ladders may be encountered on some of the Drakensberg Mountain routes, so a good head for heights is also necessary. Some routes may also pass through snow in the winter. As a minimum, we recommend 45 minutes of aerobic type exercise, three to five times a week for three months leading up to your trek; eg. hard walking, jogging or cycling. To prepare for a walking holiday we recommend you take every opportunity to walk up and down stairs and/or hills, for leg strengthening and aerobic fitness. Please remember the fitter you are the more you will enjoy your holiday.

Wildlife

The wilderness areas of Africa are populated by large numbers of wild and potentially dangerous animals. The trip aims to view these animals in their natural habitat, uncontrolled by fences. Your experienced guides will make every effort to ensure the safety of the group at all times. Please be aware that all safari travel, including vehicle safaris in the proximity of wild animals is never entirely without risk. By travelling into wild areas in search of wild animals, all participants accept that they are choosing an adventure that includes an element of risk and this is an inherent aspect of the enjoyment of this style of travel.

Check out our Q&As

  • Who will be my travelling companions on the tour?

    We have offices on three continents which means your travelling companions will be just that – international and wonderfully eclectic. Part of small group travel means that although travellers come from various locations and backgrounds, you will be travelling with like-minded companions who, like you, are keen to share the experience and forge lifelong friendships.

  • What about environmental impact?

    We believe that adventure travel revolves around establishing a strong relationship with the people and environments in which we operate. Our responsible travel policies have been carefully developed to ensure that we minimise the impact of our presence and help to protect the regions we visit while contributing positively to the local community.

  • What should I pack?

    Your pre-departure documents include a detailed packing list with items that you need to bring. While most of the equipment for daily activities is included in your tour cost, some items like helmets and hiking boots are best brought from home. The pre-departure documents also include information on layering and recommended brands for various items to ensure you are fully prepared for your trip.

  • Do you operate a “single share” option and how does it work?

    Yes. World Expeditions does not require single travellers to pay a surcharge for travelling alone on the vast majority of our trips. Our holidays are primarily on a twin share basis, so if you are joining the group as a solo traveller, we will match you with someone of your own gender. The choice is yours however; if you prefer not to share, we do offer single supplements for private occupancy.

  • Are tips included in my trip price?

    Tips are not included in the tour cost. Tipping is a personal thing, do not worry about how much, or when, to tip. Tipping guidelines are provided for certain destinations in our pre departure information upon booking, however the best advice will be provided by your tour leader.

  • Am I suited to small-group travel?

    We recognise that many of our travellers have not been on a ‘group trip’ before. Yet what our departures provide is both structure and flexibility, allowing you plenty of freedom within the framework of the itinerary. You’ll find that with our maximum group size at 16, you’ll travel in a minimal impact style with a great group of like-minded travellers.

  • Can you advise which vaccinations are recommended?

    While our pre-departure kit provides information on vaccinations, we suggest that you consult your doctor, local government inoculation centre or a travel medical specialist in order to get the most current advice regarding vaccination requirements.

Reviews from travellers on this tour

Jennifer Messer(Hermit Park, QLD Australia)  

South Africa Walking Adventure

Everything was well organised. Our Guides were exc

Everything was well organised. Our Guides were excellent. Very knowledgeable and constantly supplying us with information. They are also excellent cooks! They were very patient and understanding with our needs and requests. We had a great experience. Thanks.

Gus. C(NSW, Australia)  

South Africa Walking Adventure

The South Africa Walking Adventure trip was incred

The South Africa Walking Adventure trip was incredible! I was blown away by the diverse range of wildlife including the Big 5, lovely landscapes, interesting culture and history; with the highlight being the fabulous hiking in the Drakensberg Mountains including an ascent of the Amphitheatre. This trip has much to offer the first timer who has yet to experience the wonders of South Africa, or the seasoned traveller looking to do more activity beyond a classic safari.

Wasim Khan(Corona, California United States)  

South Africa Walking Adventure

Trip was excellent. However overload of ancient hi

Trip was excellent. However overload of ancient history information. Too many names to remember. Less talk about plant botany, Geology, Information overload.

Jill Doctor(glebe, NSW Australia)  

South Africa Walking Adventure

This trip is a combination of wildlife safaris and

This trip is a combination of wildlife safaris and historical sites with a few days of walking. There is a lot of driving and some of the places visited could easily have been omitted from the itinerary as they weren't that interesting. I enjoyed the trip but would have preferred more walking.

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Book with Confidence

  • Transfer as credit to Future Tours

    World Expeditions allows you to transfer existing payments to a future tour to avoid cancellation fees if you can't travel and inform world expeditions, 70 days before departure.

  • Low Deposit

    World Expeditions requires a minimum deposit of 250 GBP per person or the full booking value, whichever is less, with the final balance not due until 70 days before departure.

  • Cancellation Policy

    We don't charge a cancellation fee, here is a summary of world expeditions charges.

    Up to 70 days before tour starts: Forfeit 100% of deposit.

    At 69 days before tour starts: Forfeit 50% of booking price.

    At 35 days before tour starts: Forfeit 100% of booking price.

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