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15 Days Kruger, Swaziland & Lesotho - South - Johannesburg to Port Elizabeth [NAJP]

Route:

South Africa - Johannesburg - Kruger National Park - Swaziland - Mlilwane Wildlife Reserve - St. Lucia Wetlands Park - Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Park - Durban - Royal Natal National Park KZN Parks - Lesotho - Malealea - South Africa - Addo Elephant National Park - Port Elizabeth

Highlights:
Panorama Route - Kruger National Park - Mlilwane royal National Park - Swazi Culture - St. Lucia - Zulu Nation - Wild Coast - Drakensberg Mountains - Pony Trekking - Lesotho Highlands - Addo Elephant National Park

Countries Visited:
South Africa - Swaziland - Lesotho

DETAILS:
Trip Code: NAJP
Length:
15 Days / 14 Nights
Min / Max People: 2 / 18
Vehicle: Adventure truck
Departure Point:
8.00 am from Garden Court O.R. Tambo International Airport, 2 Hulley Road, Isando Ext. 3, Kempton Park, Gauteng, South Africa. Tel: +27 11 392 1062
www.southernsun.com/garden-court/or-tambo-international-airport/pages/overview.aspx
End Point:
Kings Beach Hotel, La Roche Drive Humewood, Humewood, Port Elizabeth, Tel:27 41 582 3720
http://www.tsogosunhotels.com/garden-court/kings-beach/pages/overview.aspx

*Note: All information is subject to change without prior notice. Travel times and campsites can change depending on road or weather conditions, etc. These are used as a guideline only. On our longer tours it is possible that your crew, truck and fellow travellers will change due to our unique tour linking system. On this tour, camping and accommodated clients will be travelling together with a maximum number of participants of 18.

 

 

Itinerary:

Day 1 South Africa – Panorama Route
Leaving Johannesburg we travel along the Panorama Route one of South Africa’s most scenic drives. The Panorama route consists of Bourke’s Luck Potholes and the Blyde River Canyon including God’s Window and Three Rondavels. This evening we will enjoy a traditional Shangaan Dinner with dancing.
Meals: Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Two per room: Timbavati Safari Lodge: www.timbavatisafarilodge.com
Facilities: En-Suite, hot showers, bar, laundry, internet, swimming pool, shop
Route: Johannesburg to Timbavati ±500 km
Travel time: ±9-10 hrs including Panorama Route (long day)
Included Highlight: Panorama route: God's Window, Blyde River Canyon, Bourkes Luck Potholes
Traditional Shangaan Dinner with dancing

Day 2/3 Kruger National Park
We get up early to visit Moholoholo Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre where injured or lost animals are rehabilitated to be released back into the wild. This is a wonderful opportunity to see some very special species up close, as well as learn about the positive achievements being accomplished here. Later we enter the world famous Kruger Park and immediately start with an afternoon game drive in the truck. The next day is a full day’s game viewing from the advantageous height of our wonderful truck. 
Optional Activities s (subject to availability): Full day 4x4 game drive, Morning walk, sunset game drive
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Accommodation: Two per room: Nkambeni Reserve: www.nkambeni.co.za
Facilities: En-Suite, hot showers, bar, drinkable water, internet, swimming pool, shop
Route: Timbavati Lodge to Orpen Gate (KNP). ±140 km (additional drive to Wildlife Centre)
Travel time: ±3-4 hrs to gate including the educational visit
Activity package: Visit to Moholoholo Wildlife Rehabilitation centre
Included Highlight: Game drives in Nomad truck

Day 4/5 Swaziland - Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary
The Kingdom of Swaziland is a landlocked country bordered by South Africa and Mozambique. We spend the next two nights in the Mlilwane Nature Reserve. Exploring the area on foot allows you to appreciate the scenery as well as the animals; there are no dangerous predators here.
Optional Activities: Guided birding walk, Game Drive, Village visit
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Two per Beehive Hut: Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary: www.biggameparks.org/mlilwane
Facilities: En-Suite, hot showers, bar, swimming pool
Route: Kruger NP to Mlilwane. ±230 km (in addition approx 150km in KNP)
Travel time: ±5-6 hrs and a border crossing
Included Highlight: Morning Kruger Game drive in Nomad truck, stop at local markets, explore area on foot.

Border posts:
South Africa: Mananga, Tel: +27 (0) 13 793 7075, Open: 07h00-18h00.
Swaziland: Mananga, Tel: +268 323 2137, Open: 07h00-18h00.

Day 6 South Africa – Isimangaliso (Greater St Lucia) Wetland Park
We leave Swaziland and take a scenic drive towards the warm Indian Ocean coast, re-entering South Africa. Soon after our arrival at iSimangaliso Wetland Park we board a boat for a sunset cruise on the lagoon for some bird and hippo viewing! This UNESCO recognised area is extremely varied and includes: lakes, beaches, coral reefs, wetlands, woodlands, coastal forests and grasslands together supporting an astounding diversity of animal, bird and marine life.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Two per room: www.shonalanga.net
Facilities: En-Suite, hot showers, laundry, internet, swimming pool
Route: Mlilwane to St. Lucia. ±400 km
Travel time: ±4-5 hrs and a border crossing
Activity package: St. Lucia Lagoon Boat Cruise

Border posts:
Swaziland: Golela, Tel: +34 435 1070, Open: 07h00-20h00.
South Africa: Bothashoop, Tel: +17 8260 400, Open: 08h00-16h00.

Day 7 Hluhluwe - Imfolozi Game Reserve and Durban
This morning we drive to the Hluhluwe-Umfolozi Game Reserve for a game drive in open 4x4 vehicles. The park is the only state-run park in the province of KwaZulu-Natal where all the Big Five occur. Due to conservation efforts, the park now has the largest population of white rhino in the world. In the late afternoon we arrive at Durban, South Africa’s largest marine port and well-known surfing destination. The evening can be spent enjoying authentic Indian cuisine as Durban is also home to the largest population of people of Indian descent outside of India.
Optional Activities: Dinner or lunch out at Local Restaurant.
Meals: Breakfast
Accommodation: Two per room: Garden Court South Beach Hotel:
http://www.southernsun.com/garden-court/south-beach/pages/rooms.aspx
Facilities: En-Suite, hot showers, bar, laundry, drinkable water, internet, swimming pool, shop
Route: St. Lucia to Durban. ±265 km
Travel time: ±4-5 hrs

Day 8/9 Ukhahlamba Drakensberg Park
We leave behind the beautiful beaches of KwaZulu Natal and travel inland to the Ukhahlamba Drakensberg or Royal Natal National Park, part of the huge and incredibly scenic Drakensberg Escarpment. The Drakensberg is South Africa’s highest mountain range with peaks at over 3000 metres. Hiking is the most popular activity here and your guides will take you on a lovely hike if you are not already busy with other optional activities.
Activities: Horse riding, Hiking.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Two per room: Drakensville Resort: www.drakensville.co.za
Facilities: En-Suite, hot showers, bar, laundry, internet, pool, shop
Route: Durban to Drakensberg. ±240 km
Travel time: ±5-6 hrs
Included Highlight: Hike with Nomad Guide in Royal Natal National Park (entrance fee and Bushmen painting
visit included).

Day 10/11 Lesotho - Malealea
It’s a visually impressive drive up to the Lesotho border, where the popular pony trekking excursion (optional) requires an early morning start. On the optional overnight trek Lesotho villagers will guide you along remote trails where there are spectacular views. You can also remain at the lodge and relax, or experience an optional shorter ride. Before we depart we visit the local village and primary school.
Optional Activities: Pony Trekking Excursion, Hiking
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Two per room: Malealea Lodge: www.malealea.com
Facilities: En-Suite, hot showers, bar
Route: Drakensberg to Malealea Lodge ±300 km
Travel time: ±8-10 hrs and a border crossing (Long Day)
Activity package: Local junior school and village visit (except during school holidays)

Border posts:
South Africa: Maserubrug, Tel: +27 51 924 4300, Open: 24hrs
Lesotho: Maserubridge, Tel: +262 313 796, Open: 24hrs

Day 12/13 South Africa – Cintsa
Leaving the ‘Kingdom in the Skies’ behind us we travel south to Cintsa. You can choose to relax, or participate in one of the optional activities available!
Optional activities: Xhosa village visit
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Two per room: Areena Resort: www.areena.co.za
Facilities: En-Suite, hot showers, bar, laundry, drinkable water, internet, swimming pool.
Route: Malealea to Cintsa ±560 km
Travel time: ± 8-9 hours plus border crossing

Border posts:
Lesotho: Vanrooyenshek, Tel: +27 51 583 1525, Open: 06h00-22h00.
South Africa: Vanrooyenshek, Tel: +27 51 583 1516, Open: 06h00-22h00

Day 14 Addo Elephant National Park
This unique Eastern Cape park is home to one of the densest concentrations of African elephants on earth as well as boasting the ‘Big Seven’(elephant, rhino, lion, buffalo, leopard, southern right whale and great white shark) as Addo is a land and marine park.
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Two per room: The Aardvark Guest House: www.thearrdvarkguesthouse.co.za
Facilities: En-Suite, hot showers, bar, internet
Route: Cintsa to Addo: ± 365 km
Travel time: ± 7-9 hours
Included Highlight: Afternoon game drive in Nomad Truck

Day 15 Port Elizabeth
This morning we drive to Port Elizabeth where you tour will end upon arrival.
Meals: Breakfast
Accommodation: Own arrangements/post-tour accommodation can be booked through Nomad.
Route: Addo to Port Elizabeth ±160-170 km
Travel time: ± 2-3 hrs

 

Inclusions & Exclusions

What’s included
Meals as indicated on the itinerary (unless otherwise specified, all meals are prepared and served at the Nomad truck), accommodation, registered guides and transport. We also include some of the highlights. These highlights are listed below in the day-by-day descriptions as “included highlights”.

What’s excluded
All items of a personal nature, alcohol, snacks, souvenirs, tips and optional activities (see list for an indication of prices.)



Activity Package
This is an optional payment that covers what we consider to be ‘essential activities’ on our tours. Ideally we would include all of these, but not everyone can afford this. This payment is 100% transparent and is listed below. The Activity Package can be pre-purchased prior to your arrival or through your guide on day 1 of your tour. This dossier has been written with the inclusion of the Activity Package items.
Activities:
Moholoholo rehabilitation centre:
R200
St Lucia boat cruise: R430
Hluhluwe game drive: R750
Lesotho school visit: R100
TOTAL COST: R1480

 

Extra information

Malaria:
Malaria prophylactics are required for the first leg of the tour.

Health:
Please inform us of any pre-existing conditions such as diabetes or asthma and any prescription medicine you may be taking. We also need to know about any food allergies or physical disability that you may have.

Visas:
Please note that these are your responsibility. Some nationalities require visas for Swaziland and Lesotho.
See Pre Departure Booklet for more information.

Insurance:
All clients require adequate Travel Insurance. Medical Insurance is not sufficient. Activity providers can refuse participation of activities, if the correct valid Travel Insurance is not provided. Travel insurance can be purchased via the Nomad website http://www.nomadtours.co.za/travel_insurance.html
(Nomad World travel insurance is in no way affiliated with Nomad Tours)

Climate:
The African sun is very strong. Please use a factor 30 sunscreen and wear a hat. You should drink at least 3 litres of water per day to avoid dehydration. It can also get very cold during winter months on this route. Please see Pre Departure Booklet for detailed information.

Currency and Banking:
South African Rand is the best currency to use on this route. ATM’s are available in all major towns and cities. There is often a limit on the amount you can draw each day. Please see Pre Departure Booklet for detailed information on each country. Travellers Cheques can take a long time to change into cash and often incur unreasonable charges.

Vaccinations:
No vaccinations are prescribed by law for the countries being visited on this tour. Please see the Pre Departure Information booklet for detailed information on vaccinations in Africa.

Onward Travel:
This tour can be extended with the Garden Route tour or linked to Accommodated Cape Town to Victoria Falls tour, or any one of the shorter modules of this tour such as the Desert Explorer.

Pre and Post Tour Accommodation:
If you require accommodation before or after your tour we can arrange this for you. We can also arrange airport transfers – contact your travel agent or Nomad to make these bookings.

Arrival:
Please be sure to arrive 1 day before your tour is due to depart. This will avoid any unforeseen problems.

Departure:
Please book your flight to depart the day after the tour officially ends. This is to account for any delays that we may experience due to unpredictable road conditions.

*Note: All information is subject to change without prior notice. Travel times and campsites can change depending on road or weather conditions, etc. These are used as a guideline only. On our longer tours it is possible that your crew, truck and fellow travellers will change due to our unique tour linking system. On this tour, camping and accommodated clients will be travelling together with a maximum number of participants of 18.

Did you receive your Pre Departure Information Booklet?
If not please contact us at nomad@nomadtours.co.za and we will e-mail you the document; alternatively visit us at 39 Castle Street, (Corner Castle & Burg Streets), Cape Town, to collect one. You can also download from our website at www.nomadtours.co.za. After hours contact number: +27 (0) 82 578 2199.

Tour Ends:
We will drop you off at Eltham Lodge www.elthamlodge.co.za. We suggest you book accommodation here for this evening through your travel agent or Nomad, however if you wish to fly out of Port Elizabeth the same day the tour ends, we suggest you book your flight for after 3pm.

TIPPING ON TOUR:
Southern Africa:
In general tipping in restaurants is generally expected and is around 10% for good service, more if you have received exceptional service, and, feel free not to tip at all if you received poor service. Tipping taxi drivers etc is really at your own discretion and not always expected. If in doubt please ask your guides.

Our guides do work hard, but they are also paid at (and often above) industry levels for this work. Our Crew can be tipped if you feel that they have done a good job and/or gone above and beyond the call of duty.

The best way to arrange tips is to elect one person in the group to collect the money. We recommend USD1 (or about R5) per day per person, per guide as a fair tip. So if you have 3-crew on a tour, we would recommend that 3 envelopes are used and each crew member’s name written on one. Place what you feel is fair into each envelope and the elected person can give these to the crew at the end of the tour. If you do not feel that the crew deserve a tip, please, do not tip them. You must remember that tipping is only for exceptional service and is not at all compulsory or expected.

THE NOMAD AFRICAN TRUST:
www.nomadafricantrust.co.za
At Nomad we are passionate about the people, places and wildlife of Africa that make our tours so special. In order to give back we have set up the Nomad African Trust.
By the end of your tour you may have left-over local currency that you will not be able to change outside of its country of origin. Any assistance you could provide to the trust by donating this left over currency will be appreciated. Thank you for your help and please join our newsletter at the website above to receive regular updates on what we are doing to support our beneficiaries.

Green Seats - Travel responsibly in Africa:
Nomad gives you the opportunity to offset your carbon foot print by purchasing a “Green Seat”. If you would like to help Nomad making Africa Greener, simply choose the tick box on your booking form and we will take care of the rest. The Nomad African Trust will plant trees that are ecologically viable and that have very high carbon absorption.
Green Seats can be purchased at departure or on tour with your guide. For more information on our “Green Seats”, please visit www.nomadtours.co.za/nomad_greenseats.html

THANK YOU FOR TRAVELLING WITH NOMAD:
At the end of your tour you will be provided with feedback forms. These forms are confidential and should be given to your crew in a sealed envelope. If you are not sure of the confidentiality of the feedback form please feel free to email us as well on ops@nomadtours.co.za. Please make sure to also complete the feedback form as we use the answers on these forms to improve and maintain our service levels.

Accommodation providers are subject to change without notice, the accommodation listed in this dossier is our preferred supplier, but sometimes due to availability, we are unable to make use of the property listed in this dossier. If we cannot use the accommodation provider as listed we will substitute another property of similar standards, however, en-suite facilities are not always guaranteed.


Addo Elephant Park
In 1919 the administration of the Cape Province decided to cull the elephant population in the Addo region and hired a Professional hunter, Major Jan Pretorius, to destroy the entire herd that inhabited the area at the time. It took him a year to kill 120, before he was stopped due to public outcry. Only 16 traumatised Addo elephants remained, wounded, frightened and unable to coexist with humans. In 1931, when only 11 elephants were left alive in the area, it was proclaimed a national park. The elephants, however, were still hostile - destroying crops and attacking anyone who came near. Finally, in 1952, one of the farmers of the area suggested that a fence be erected around the park. This kept the Elephants secure and out of the surrounding farming area. Black rhino was reintroduced in 1961- the first in the Cape for a hundred years. Today the Park boasts the Big Seven, (elephant, rhino, lion, buffalo, leopard, southern right whale and great white shark) and is sanctuary to over 450 elephants, Cape buffalo, a variety of antelope species, as well as the flightless dung beetle, found exclusively in this area.
Addo elephants are unique in that although they belong to the same species as the African Elephant, they are smaller with more rounded ears and the females generally have no tusks.

Swaziland
Swaziland is the smallest country in the southern hemisphere, and is one of only three monarchies left in Africa. The kingdom has been independent from the Commonwealth since 1968, ruled by a King who is appointed in accordance with Swazi tradition. If he is absent, or unable to perform his duties for any reason, the Queen Mother acts on his behalf. In the 1980s this tiny country made international headlines when it was ruled by two queens in succession. Following the death of King Sobhuza II, the Queen regent Dzeliwe Shongwe ruled between 1982 and 1983, and months later Ntombi Twala became the country's second female Head of State since independence.
Swaziland is landlocked, bordered on all sides by South Africa except for roughly 100km of border with Mozambique in the east. Its natural resources are extremely well managed, and despite the country’s size it lays claim to some of the best game reserves and national parks in southern Africa. Elephants, lions and rhinos have been reintroduced to the area after they disappeared due to hunting. It is also well-known for its prolific birdlife.