Begin your trip at Johannesburg O.R. Tambo International Airport Airport (JNB) at 4:00 pm.
Your Trip Leader will meet you at the airport, and you will take included transportation to your hotel in Johannesburg.
Settle into your accommodations as your Trip Leader shares the plan for the next nine days, then head out with our new friends into the city.
On your drive to the restaurant, your Trip Leader will highlight some of Johannesburg’s attractions, including the Nelson Mandela Bridge.
Enjoy your first meal together in a local restaurant that offers a glimpse into South Africa’s street food cuisine.
Wake up on your first morning in South Africa and enjoy a hearty breakfast before you begin your journey to the country's northeast region. (~6.5-hour drive)
Stop for lunch in the mining town of Lydenburg. Stretch your legs, breathe some fresh air, and fill up on grub in a local cafe. (Lunch not included)
Continue driving and taking in the landscapes of the Steenkampsbeerg and Mauchsberg mountain ranges as you make your way to Mashishimale village.
Arrive at Mashishimale village, your home for the next two nights, and be welcomed by your local hosts.
Meet your host mothers who will welcome you into their family homes. You will be given a homestay kit which includes clean linen, a roll of toilet paper, hand sanitizer, mosquito repellent, tea, coffee, a cup, sugar, and milk.
Tonight’s dinner will be a traditional home-cooked South African meal with your host family.
Settle into your homestay, swap stories with your host families, and share these unique experiences.
Rise and shine to the sounds of village life and take a short walk to meet the group for breakfast.
After breakfast, walk through the village with your guide. Every day in the village is different, but you can expect to be involved in traditional activities like beading, cooking, and even dancing.
Enjoy a traditional meal cooked by your host mothers. You may even have the opportunity to taste some local marula beer!
Take part in more activities throughout the day, like learning to crack marula nuts or helping prepare dinner. Continue exploring, and then return to your host family’s house to freshen up before supper.
Gather for another home-cooked meal!
Listen to stories from the villagers, play games, and simply appreciate this once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Wake up and make your way to breakfast. Once again, one of the host mothers will prepare this meal, giving you another chance to enjoy a home-cooked South African meal.
After breakfast, say goodbye to your host families, your village guide, and the community members. Then begin your journey to the greater Kruger area. (~2-hour drive)
Arrive at your safari lodge, and after settling in, head to the dining area for lunch. (lunch is included)
Venture out to a private reserve home to the Big Five, cheetahs, and wild dogs. Explore one of Africa's largest areas of biodiversity on a 4x4 Game Drive. (~3-hour activity)
Return to the lodge, freshen up, and join the group for dinner.
Tonight’s included dinner will be bush-style. Expect fresh meat, stew, traditional South African sides, salads, and dessert. Relax under the stars while listening to the sounds of nature!
Rise early (~5:00 am) and prepare for a full-day 4x4 game drive through Kruger National Park!
Breakfast will be provided for you today at one of the park’s picnic spots.
Spend the morning navigating the incredible landscape of one of the world’s most amazing national park.
Stop at a restaurant for lunch. Options will include burgers, wraps, toasted sandwiches, and salads. (lunch is not included)
This afternoon will consist of game viewing, bird watching, and stopping off at the various watering holes.
Return to the lodge after a full day of exploring and observing the wildlife in their natural habitats.
Freshen up, relax, and enjoy another included dinner at the lodge.
Rise early again and make the most of your time by joining a local guide on a bush walk on the surrounding reserve. Learn about the native flora and fauna and potentially spot some wildlife.
Return to the lodge for breakfast and check out of your hotel because today, you will be flying to Cape Town!
Take an included domestic flight to the magical city of Cape Town, located on South Africa’s southwest coast.
Take private vans from the airport to your hotel. After checking in, join your Trip Leader for a quick orientation walk around the neighborhood to get your bearings.
The rest of the afternoon and evening is your free time!
Select from a few optional activities, including sunset cruises, catching a movie at an open-air cinema, or checking out some street art in Woodstock.
Dinner tonight is on your own, though your Trip Leader will share some local recommendations for the best restaurants or neighborhoods to explore.
For a change of scenery after spending the first part of your trip in South Africa’s rural areas, head out to explore some city nightlife. Long Street is a popular area with bars, restaurants, and clubs.
Wake up to your first morning in Cape Town and eat a hearty breakfast at the hotel.
Today, you will head out for a full-day tour of the Winelands area, known for producing some of the world’s finest wines.
Visit hand-selected wine estates led by a Wine Lord who will guide you and explain the different styles of wines and how to best pair them with delicious snacks and treats.
Lunch is included as part of your Winelands tour.
In the afternoon, you will continue to visit vineyards and explore more of South Africa’s wine culture.
Return to your accommodation to freshen up or take a power nap.
Tonight is a free evening for you to explore more of the delicious restaurants in the area.
Ask your Trip Leader for recommendations on neighborhoods to explore.
Have breakfast at your hotel, and prepare for a day of adventure.
Drive over to Simon’s Town, a picturesque coastal village on the waters of False Bay.
Meet your local guides, who will instruct you on how to standup paddleboard. This morning you will paddle for approximately 2 hours. While paddling, you may have the opportunity to see African penguins swimming in the bay and spot a few seals.
You’ll also be able to walk the boardwalks of Boulders Beach to view the penguins.
Head out for lunch (not included) in Simon’s Town. We recommend trying fish n’ chips! Afterward, make your way to the Cape Point Nature Reserve.
Drive the Cape Peninsula route, passing through Fish Hoek and making your way to Cape Point. Stand at the top of the point and gaze out to see where the Indian and Atlantic Oceans meet.
Go for a moderate hike along the Lighthouse Trail and then opt to ride the cable car back down.
Return to your accommodations and get ready for your final dinner together.
Enjoy one more South African meal, including local Cape Malay dishes, at a local restaurant and participate in an interactive Djembe drumming session.
Wake up to one last South African sunrise, enjoy breakfast, and reflect on your experiences over the past week.
Say goodbye to your new friends and depart any time of the day with instructions from your Trip Leader on how to take transportation to the airport.
Ask your Trip Leader for suggestions if you plan to spend more time in South Africa.