Explore the very best of Africa:game parks, beaches, activities & last the great wilderness areas, in more comfort plus innovative facilities for the discerning traveller. SAVE £300 on July 2013 Departures.
Late Availability Specials on July 2013 Departures - SAVE £300 - Tour Price £2695 plus Local payment.
Travel from Kenya to the Southern tip of Africa via Victoria Falls in Zambia with a maximum of 16 passengers in our custom built full size expedition truck. With over a metre of legroom at each seat, sit back, relax and experience the wonders of the continent. Explore five of Africa's great National Parks and last great wilderness areas, soak up the sun on the beaches of Zanzibar and Lake Malawi, stand on the edge of the Victoria Falls, experience the vast open spaces of the deserts of Namibia, and visit South Africa's mother city, Cape Town.
We provide the services of an expert photographer and digital download facility on all our overland tours, a unique feature making us stand out from the others!
Integrated photographic workshops and tutorials for those clients that have an interest in obtaining more memorable images than just snaps while on tour. As part of our crew we have a photographically knowledgeable guide who will provide these throughout the duration of your tour with us. Even if you are not a keen photographer we are sure that you will bring some sort of camera to Africa and therefore be in a position to capture memorable photos with us even with a point and shoot camera.
Photographic tips covered include: How a Camera Works: Exposure: What is exposure value? We look at how a camera captures a photograph at the correct exposure and investigate the impact of hi and low key scenes Shutter: What is shutter speed and its impact on taking photos? Using a tripod we experiment with effects gained by the use of different shutter speeds. Aperture: What is aperture and its impact on taking photos, we look at depth of field, techniques and application ISO: What and when to use? We talk about noise and low light scenes. Composition : Rule of thirds: Basic principles of composition and subject placement considerations when using a grid. Leading lines: How leading lines can be found and using them effectively in your composition. Focal points: Finding and choosing your focal point to create a photo with impact. Framing: What you should consider when framing a shot and different techniques. Point of view: Adjusting your point of view to create a different moods. Techniques : Lighting: Different lighting situations, their impact on the subject and how to tackle them. Metering: The different metering modes, how they work and how to use each one. Flash: use of fill flash and adjusting flash output. White balance: colour temperature and how to customise your white balance. Capturing a moment : Colour theory: contrasting and complimentary colours and their impact on taking photos. Story telling: more than a photo, we look at what your photo is telling the viewer using the techniques learnt on the course. Themes & moods: Looking at the emotional impact of a photograph. Types of photography: Macro the small things in life. Landscape capturing that desert landscape or dramatic sky. Wildlife Capturing the wildlife of Africa Portraiture The people we meet along the way. Travel history, culture and ambiance Gear : Lenses. Camera Bodies. Storage. Throughout the trip location specific workshops take place, focusing on night photography, abstract photography, panoramas, sunset/sunrise photos, textures, silhouettes, etc.
Tour price includes all highlights (inclusive activities worth £1525), all ground transport except Zanzibar, all road tolls and vehicle taxes, camping and cooking equipment and services of 3 crew.
Local Payment - US$1690 - Local Payment covers all food [3 meals a day (except Zanzibar) - provided by our cook) and camping fees/accommodation for the whole tour including 4 nights on Zanzibar. This is payable to the tourleader at the start of the tour in US dollars only.
I T I N E R A R Y
Day 1-2 Leaving Nairobi we head for the Nakuru region on the Great Rift Valley. We spend the first two nights on a large working farm not far from the small town of Nakuru and close to the Nakuru National Park. Next morning we explore the Nakuru National Park, giving you a very good chance of seeing leopard and rhino. CAMPSITE
Day 3-4 Crossing the border into Tanzania we camp near or on the shores of Lake Victoria. We make our way to the Serengeti National Park, where we stay one night and go for afternoon and morning game drives. CAMPSITE
Day 5 Leaving the Serengeti around noon, we drive up the escarpment to the lush vegetation of the Ngorongoro Crater, spending the night on the outskirts of a town near the crater rim. CAMPSITE
Day 5 Leaving the Serengeti around noon, we drive up the escarpment to the lush vegetation of the Ngorongoro Crater, spending the night on the crater rim which has its own wildife. CAMPSITE
Day 6-7 Next day we do a game drive in 4x4 vehicles into the crater itself, returning to our campsite in the mid-afternoon. Next morning we have a relaxing start after all our early mornings and head into Arusha to visit the local ebony market, stopping to visit a local Maasi village along the way before heading off to camp the night in the foothills of Kilimanjaro. CAMPSITE
Day 8 The following day is a long drive to Dar-es-Salaam, passing though many African villages. That night we camp on a beach on the outskirts of Dar. CAMPSITE
Day 9-12 Thereafter you have 4 nights (5 days) to explore the island of Zanzibar at your leisure. Take in the sights, sounds and intricate winding streets of Stone Town and its people, join a spice tour, swim with Dolphins at the southern tip of the island or just soak up the sun (Activities own expenses). BUNGALOW ACCOMMODATION
Day 13 Returning to the mainland we camp in Dar that night before setting out for the Tanzanian Highlands. CAMPSITE
Day 14-16 The drive to Malawi takes us through interesting landscapes. We spend several days driving through the highlands of Tanzania before descending into the basin of Lake Malawi. We stop off for a night in the Baobab Valley Conservation Area camping on the edge of the Great Ruaha River where a number of walks can be taken directly from the camp. Moving further south our next night we stop at a quaint farmhouse in the Tanzania highlands before moving on next morning to visit a local tea plantation. CAMPSITE
Day 17-19 Descending and crossing the border into Malawi we travel down the lake spending the next 3 nights on the lakeshore for some R & R or you can take a dive in Lake Malawi, canoe out to Kande Island or horse ride in the forests above the lake ending with a swim in the lake with your horse. CAMPSITE
Day 20 Today we head south to the town of Lilongwe, where you will have the opportunity to do some curio shopping. Crew stocks up with supplies. CAMPSITE
Day 21-23 A short drive takes us to South Luangwa National Park. This is one of the best national parks in Africa and leopard sightings are quite common. Here we take a morning and evening game drive in the park plus with the added extra day you can do your own optional drives/walks while camping on the banks of the Luangwa River. CAMPSITE
Day 24-25 Leaving this beautiful valley behind us we drive through the interior of Zambia spending the night on the Luangwa River once again. Continuing our drive we pass through the capital of Zambia, Lusaka and onto Livingstone, arriving in the afternoon. CAMPSITE
Day 26-27 Arriving at Victoria Falls you have the opportunity to do any number of the adrenaline activities on offer in your own time. We suggest that you spend a few extra days in the area at the end of your tour with us. On your last day with us we take you to view the spectacular Victoria Falls and end the tour with a sunset cruise on the Zambezi. CAMPSITE Those that wish can cross into Zimbabwe but visas and activities are for your own expense. Visas range from US$30-US$60 depending on nationality. Victoria Falls entry from Zimbabwe side is US$20-30.
Day 28 There is one day free between the two sections of tour. This is free for you to relax while your crew get ready for the next section of the tour.
Day 29-31 We continue to stay in the Falls area to give those joining the tour to do activities and see the falls giving those doing the whole tour time to relax. CAMPSITE
Day 32-33 Leaving the Falls we enter Botswana and spend two nights camped on the banks of the Chobe River. We take a morning game drive into the Chobe National Park and then spend the afternoon on the river with a sunset game cruise. CAMPSITE
Day 34 The following day we head for Maun, spending the night just outside town. Relax for the afternoon or get a different perspective of this vast inland waterway from a small aircraft. CAMPSITE
Day 35-37 We then head north to the town of Etsha 13 where we begin our Delta experience. This is the panhandle of the Okavango region. Transfer with 4x4 truck and motorboats. CAMPSITE
Day 38 Driving north to Namibia we spend the night in a beautiful campsite on the banks of the Kavango river. CAMPSITE
Day 39-41 We head west to Etosha National Park spending the next 3 days game driving in the park. In the evenings you can sit at the floodlit water holes and watch the "nightlife". CAMPSITE
Day 42 After Etosha we head to a local cheetah conservation project, where you have the opportunity to interact with these special mammals. CAMPSITE
Day 43-44 Heading to the northern most part of Namibia on the border with Angola we spend the next two nights at Epupa Falls created by the Kunene River and visit the unique Himba people. CAMPSITE
Day 45 Today our destination is a campsite near the Twyfelfontein Rock engravings, which we will also visit. CAMPSITE
Day 46 A short drive takes us to the Brandberg, Namibias highest mountain. Here we bush camp for the night. The views are spectacular, and we also walk into the mountain reserve to visit the famous white lady bushman painting. CAMPSITE
Day 47-49 Cape Cross seal colony. Next morning we continue to the coast to visit the Cape Cross seal colony, then on to the old German town of Swakopmund where there are more adrenaline pumping activities such as quad biking, sand boarding, skydiving (at additional cost). Spend the day enjoying the activities that Swakopmund has to offer. Explore this colonial town, with its Germanic architecture. Bungalow accommodation.
Day 50-51 The next morning we travel to the dramatic red sand dunes of Sossusvlei in the Namib Desert. Arriving in the Namib Desert area we spend one night at Sesriem which is the jump off point for the Sossusvlei area. Watch the sunrise over the dunes and explore the Sossusvlei area for several hours. That afternoon we stay at a desert camp on a private farm and take a tour to see how the original San (bushmen) used to live. CAMPSITE
Day 52-53 Our next stop is the Fish River Canyon. We spend one night here and view the sunset while having a drink on the canyon's rim. A few hours travel the next day brings us to a lush campsite on the banks of the Orange River. Take a short canoe trip down the Orange river. CAMPSITE
Day 54 We head into South Africa today camping our final night at an operating wine farm a few hours outside of Cape Town. Spend the evening tasting wines from the Olifants River Valley region (own expense). CAMPSITE
Day 55 Arrival in Cape Town. TOUR ENDS ON ARRIVAL IN CAPE TOWN
Included highlights: Lake Nukuru National Park Entry and Game drive Serengeti National Park Entry and game drives Masai tribal village visit Ngorongoro Crater half day 4X4 game drive Zanzibar Ferry and accommodation Tea Plantation Tour - Local community Project Malawi beaches South Luangwa National Park Entry and morning and afternoon/night game drive Zambezi Sunset cruise Victoria Falls National Park entry Chobe National Park Entry and game drive plus boat cruise 3 night/4 day mokoro trip to Okavango Delta Etosha National Park Entry - game drives in our truck Cheetah Conservation Project - Namibia Himba Tribe Twyfelfontein rock engravings Brandberg Mountains - White Lady Bushman Painting Cape Cross Seal Colony Entry Namib Desert Park Entry and Sossusvlei Dunes Transfer Guided Desert Tour Fish River Canyon Park Entry
Not Included: Optional spice tour, diving/snorkelling, dolphin trip, food/drinks on Zanzibar. Activities at Victoria Falls Flight over Okavango Delta Activities at Swakopmund Orange River Canoeing Wine Tasting Visas, travel insurance, vaccinations, flights, airport taxes, sleeping bag, items of a personal nature, curios and alcohol.
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I had a great time. Price/quality it was a very good vlaue. In camping areas I would ask to see other bus accommadations & encourage others to look at our bus. We had much more leg room than any other bus I saw & we had spacious lockers with a safe that you could use as a comfortable foot rest.
The food was great with a fully cooked breakfast about 1/3 of the time, cold cut sandwiches & leftovers from the night before for lunch & a full cooked dinner each night with roasts & plenty of meat & vegetables. There was a vegetarian couple & many nights I would sample their delicious food offerings.
The guide was very knowledgeable about geography, animals & birds. It's a photographic safari & the guide is a skilled photographer - she gave us all a good photo CD.
My 17 year old son and I participated in the Nairobi to Nairobi 2 week adventure with in June of 2008.
It was a fantastic trip. If you want to get a feel for "true" Africa both with the animals and the people, this is a great tour. The guide is also knowledgeable in photography and gave several classes along the way to help up improve our photography.
The itinerary provided a variety of camping venues and game parks. We had enough free to time to mingle with the locals. Ifyou do get wary of sleeping in the tent and using the camp facilities, there are many opportunities to upgrade to a room with beds and bath. The cook prepared very tasty meals. The driver was excellent.
Great trip for an introduction to Africa. I am not a seasoned camper, so it takes a while to get used to it. Food was great, and the people on the tour were a good mix of seasoned travellers mostly in their 30's, however one couple in their 50's fit in just perfectly.
Sometimes the trip was more about "the group" and the setup/ activities required with setting up camp each day, and not enough time doing activities. Overall, I would recommend this trip and especially the truck, as it was the most comfortable overland truck out there ( lots of legroom).
Would recommend people bring their own mosquito nets and self inflating sleeping pads, and at least $500 USD in cash, as the ATM's in Botswana and Zambia only accept Visa-linked bankcards.
We (family of 5 (3 children) ) have just recently completed our overland tour from Nairobi to Vic Falls.
In short the whole family had a very nice, different and exciting vacation this year. Lots of new experiences and new aquaintances (There were indeed lots of highlights - nature, animals, people, food - GREAT).
The truck was overall very good (lot of space) and good comfort (apart from back seat). Some adjustments to the iternary is recommended, i.e cancel the Zomba Platau and use the three days to shorten the longest drives (e.g Arusha to Dar es Salam and Dar to Farmhouse)..
What I will stress again here is how pleased we all were with the crew. They certainly made this 4 weeks journey a most enjoyable experience. In our opinion the three guys made a very good team covering all we needed. Their behaviour, allways prepared to help and do the best out of anything, their friendliness and knowledge and what appared to us their genuine interest in the passengers was great. I can assure you that our kids (age 19, 17 and 11) are just as full of positive feedback. Give them again our thanks and regards. It was in fact sad to leave in Vic Falls.
No one knows what the future will bring, but I can assure you that we have not been scared off doing another overland trip another time. And compared to other trucks we saw, there shouldn't be any doubt that we would again choose the same company.
We certainly did have a very enjoyable and most memorable holiday.
There were several reasons we booked with this operator: there was a cook who was part of the crew - we didn't mind helping with meals but didn't want to be responsible for shopping and cooking, as is the case with several other companies; the truck looked amazingly spacious, compared to others, and we liked the limited size of the group - 16 max but in fact we were only a group of 11 the itinerary covered several places we particularly wanted to see, including the Okavango Delta, Etosha game park and the Namibian desert
Joe was an amazing cook, producing gourmet meals on two gas burners and a camp fire, often including puddings! (His roast pumpkin with coconut and mushroom sauce had to be experienced to be believed!) And even though we did have to help with the cooking once every four days, this mainly consisted of chopping and stirring, so was never onerous.
The truck was indeed very spacious - we had ample leg room plus a large, very deep, locker in front of us for daysacks, cameras etc. on which we could also stretch our legs. The seats were reclining coach seats and we had two large windows so were amazingly comfortable. There were also overhead hatches for game park viewing but being a small person (5' 2") I only tried this once - they're fine if you're a few inches taller than that!
Our itinerary fulfilled all our expectations and provided some unexpected treasures, e.g. the afternoon spent in a Himba village. There were also optional tours available along the way which were not hugely expensive and provided even more variety - we opted for a flight over the Okavango Delta, a dolphin cruise out of Swakopmund (during which we saw a humpback whale) and an afternoon tour of the township just outside Swakopmund, which gave us another little glimpse of a very different way of life.
So to sum up: We were extremely pleased with our Southern Cross tour. The itinerary was varied and amazingly interesting, providing us with a highlight almost every day. We loved the big blue truck which offered spacious accommodation on driving days, with personal lockers (including a safe), reclining seats and ample leg room. Tents were roomy, easy to erect and dismantle, and thick foam mats made comfortable beds.
Three ample meals were provided each day, often including a cooked breakfast, fresh fruit was always available and dinners were gourmet standard every night, always with fresh vegetables and often followed by irresistible puddings.
Our guide, as well as being extremely knowledgeable and helpful, was also an expert photographer, and ran workshops on the bus on how to take the best African photographs. I don't think I'd have returned with quite as many brilliant photographs were it not for his input. We'd happily travel with them again.