Arrive at Johannesburg Airport this morning to begin your African safari. You are met right at the door of your aircraft and assisted through customs and immigration to check into your connecting flight to to Port Elizabeth. From Port Elizabeth you will board a light aircraft and be flown directly to Kwandwe Private Game Reserve where you will be met by your private guide and vehicle, and transferred to your private house.
Nestled in the heart of South Africa’s unspoilt Eastern Cape province, Kwandwe Private Game Reserve is a world-class Big Five safari experience in 54,000 acres of malaria-free pristine private wilderness. Thousands of animals including lion, black and white rhino, buffalo, elephant and cheetah roam these expansive plains. The meaning of Kwandwe in isiXhosa is “Place of the Blue Crane”, and the Reserve is a proud home to a population of these rare, vulnerable birds. The Reserve is also sanctuary to other threatened species including the Knysna woodpecker, Cape grysbok, black wildebeest, crowned eagle and black-footed cat. Kwandwe flanks both the north and south banks of the Great Fish River, which meanders for 19 miles through pristine wilderness. Explore the reserve with your private guide on foot and by 4×4 safari vehicle or just sit back on the and keep your eyes out for animals around the house.
Today you will be picked up mid-morning and transferred back to the Port Elizabeth Airport for the short flight to Cape Town, where your exclusive use home awaits. This afternoon is at your leisure to explore. The old and established neighborhoods of Gardens, Oranjezicht and Tamboerskloof merge into each other as they line the foothills of Table Mountain and Signal Hill. The area enjoys convenient proximity to the city, the Table Mountain Cableway, as well as the beaches. The narrow little streets are lined by original Cape buildings, many of which have been beautifully restored, some now housing museums and art galleries, as well as lively sidewalk cafés and highly acclaimed restaurants. Now known for its trendy and modern vibe, this region is often visited on foot, encompassing the historic parliament buildings, the Company Gardens and the lively café culture and boutiques of Kloof Street.
Wild Child Peninsula Adventure
Today is about engaging both parent and children in an action filled adventure around the Peninsula. Your private guide from will pick you up after breakfast this morning and head out to the Peninsula where you will make your first stop for a tour into Kirstenbosh gardens to check out the ‘The Boomslang’. Inspired by a snake skeleton, this spectacular Tree Canopy Walkway winds and dips its way through and over the trees of the Arboretum. With tree top views of Table Mountain and out over the city, it’s a great way to start the day’s adventure.
After Boomslang, it’s on to Kalk Bay Fish Market to meet the seals. Try your luck and toss a hand line over the harbor wall to see if we can catch anything. No trip to the peninsula is complete without a picture atop “Just Nuisance”! This Great Dane was enlisted in the Navy for helping wayward sailors make their way home and lovingly remembered with a bronze casting in the harbor.
You’ll stop for lunch before visiting the African Penguins of Boulders Beach. Weather depending, head out on a Stand Up Paddleboard and/or snorkel in the rock pools. This is also a great time to just enjoy the beach and penguins. Be prepared, the water is very cold! Finally head into the peninsula reserve itself. Keep your eyes peeled for the Cape 5 (Ostrich, Baboons, Mountain Zebra, Bontebuck and Tortoise). Your time in the reserve will be spent on the deserted and often sheltered beaches paddling or exploring ship wrecks.
Take in the sites and spectacular scenery of the Winelands with your private guide as you make your way through superb mountain ranges, vineyards and Cape Dutch homesteads. Today sample a selection of some of the finest wines and top-notch ‘family-friendly’ estates.
With award-winning wine and delicious food on offer, a wine tasting at Spier is one of the most popular options in the Stellenbosch area. Here, the chocolate pairing is a particular highlight which, as the name suggests, sees the farm’s signature Méthode Cap Classique and Creative Block blends complemented by specially curated chocolates. Children are offered a special grape juice tasting and for something totally different and the 2-hour Segway tour (additional cost) is highly recommended. Not only is a ride on one of these two-wheeled, self-balancing electric vehicles a whole lot of fun, but it also offers a chance to experience the farm’s vineyards and pastures. The next stop, Middlevlei in the Devon Valley, is genuinely relaxed and down to earth estate. Little ones are encouraged to run wild on the lawns and feed the farm animals. With an outdoor wooden deck and a generous fireplace, Mulderbosch’s tasting room can facilitate tastings in both the warmer and colder months.
This day is yours to tailor and craft as you choose.
Cape Town Tour
Explore the city of Cape Town this morning, known affectionately as the Mother City. Take in the Houses of Parliament, the Castle (built between 1666 and 1679, this is South Africa’s oldest building), the lively Greenmarket Square with its daily market, the Company Gardens and of course Table Mountain, which will give you spectacular views over the city and the Peninsula. (The cable car fee is not included as it is weather dependent). As you come back down from the mountain, make a stop at Bo-Kaap, home to the Cape Malay community, with its cobbled streets and brightly colored houses. From here you have the choice of being dropped off at the Waterfront to experience this vibrant location at your own pace, with its many shops, restaurants and pubs or at your guesthouse around lunchtime. This afternoon is at your leisure to visit the renowned Two Ocean’s Aquarium or Cape Town’s gorgeous beaches.
Grootbos Nature Reserv
Your guide will pick you up this morning for the 3-4 hour scenic drive down the Indian Ocean coast to your private ocean view villa in the Grootbos Nature Reserve. The Reserve is spectacularly situated on the fynbos and forest clad hills overlooking the whale-watching haven of Walker Bay on the southern coast of the Western Cape. This is a region of indescribable beauty and Grootbos is committed to protecting this ecosystem and showcasing the many wonders to its guests. The reserve boasts some of the world’s most distinct and unique plant, bird and animal species. The next few days are yours to explore with the reserve’s specialized guiding team who lead private 4×4 drives and walks through the fynbos and forests of the reserve, trips to the nearby coast to view the Southern Right Whales from land, walks along deserted beaches, visits to archaeological and cultural sites, boat-based whale watching trips, as well as boat tours to a nearby seal island to view penguins, seals, dolphins and great white sharks. Some of the included activities are horseback riding on the Reserve, visits to the Klipgat Cave, birding walks, flower safaris, visits to local beaches and whale watching from the cliffs. Activities available at an additional cost include horseback riding on the beach, whale watching by boat and cage shark diving.
On day 11, it is sadly time to depart. Head back to Cape Town for your returning flight home.
As a native South African, safaris are in Mike's blood. While he has traveled extensively throughout Africa - 12 countries and more safaris than he can count - from Morocco to Namibia (and almost every country in between), his favorite safari experience is still in the Okavango Delta in Botswana. With 20 years in the safari industry, Mike has spent decades fostering close-knit relationships with camps, lodges and guides throughout Africa. As a true safari expert, he personally vets all African Safari Company & Expeditions safari partners in Africa.
Julia's summers as a child were spent exploring her grandparent's farm in Zimbabwe, game parks throughout the region and visiting family in South Africa. These experiences shaped her more than she could have imagined, and in her early 20s she packed her bags and headed to Zambia to manage a camp in the South Luangwa Valley. Julia returned and joined her father, Mike, at African Safari Company in 2001 assisting with special projects until she came on board as the Director of Sales in 2011.
Julia has traveled countless times to Africa: South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Kenya, Tanzania and Morocco vetting safari lodges, meeting guides and exploring game reserves and her favorite African cities (Cape Town being her top pick!). Even after venturing to so many places, she can still easily pick her favorite African safari experiences, one being Kiba Point in the Selous National Park in Tanzania. "Incredible wildlife, amazing guides, the river, sleep outs, hot springs...it has it all!" She has also visited Ecuador and the Galapagos, Peru, the Bahamas, France, Mexico and Jamaica, and is always looking for the next opportunity to explore exotic locales. While her in-depth knowledge spans East and Southern Africa, plus Morocco, we consider her to be our resident Zambia safari expert, South Africa safari expert and Tanzania safari expert. Contact Julia to plan your custom African safari today!
Isaac joined African Safari Co. & Expeditions in 2018. He has extensive experience traveling throughout Latin America and is fluent in Portuguese and Spanish. While his expertise lies in the tropical paradise of of South America, he is excited to hit the ground running in discovering Africa and scouting out the most unique, and adventurous, safari experiences.
Shannon joined the company in 2015 and has since had the incredible opportunity of visiting Kenya, South Africa, Morocco, Zimbabwe and Botswana. Her first trip to Kenya is where she fell in love with the people, wildlife and the soul of a safari. She now managers web design & marketing for African Safari Co. & Expeditions.
Elliot joined the African Safari Co. team, and the world, in June of 2016. He begin as our official Director of Naps and has since traveled to South Africa and Guatemala and has been promoted to Vice President of chaos. Elliot is excited to continue to grow with the company, quite literally speaking, and travel the world in search of new adventures!
Bogey has been with the African Safari Co. since 2014. While he unfortunately can not travel to Africa, for a natural fear of lions, he loves being in the office and helping to keep everyone on their toes and on time for daily walks.