October 11-27, 2019
Africa: South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Rwanda and Uganda
Location: Africa: South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Rwanda and Uganda
Dates: October 11-27, 2019
Price: 5,995.00. Please read the PRICE AND PAYMENT TERMS for more details.
Group Leader: Eduardo
Number of Spots: 20
It's OK to RSVP without a deposit. A deposit guarantees your spot.
SOLD OUT. YOU CAN PUT YOUR NAME ON THE "WANNA GO" LIST AND WE'LL LET YOU KNOW IF A SPOT OPENS UP.
OK, it's finally here! We have been working on this for months and put together what I think is our best trip ever. The adventure trip to top all of our adventure trips. The African ultimate trip.
In this amazing 17-day trip we will:
- Visit 5 countries: South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Rwanda and Uganda.
- Visit Victoria Falls and SWIM AT DEVIL'S POOL! You have seen videos of it online and I'm sure you said, "I've got to do this!!!" Well, now you will.
- Swim under Victoria Falls. You read that correctly: we will not only hike to the bottom of it, but we will SWIM UNDER THE MAJESTIC VICTORIA FALLS.
- Visit some of the most important cities in South Africa, including Cape Town and Johannesburg.
- Drive the breathtaking Garden Route in South Africa.
- Visit important historical landmarks, including Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela was held prisoner and the Apartheid Museum.
- Dive with crocodiles. Yup, you also read that correctly as well!
- Swim with penguins in Boulders Beach! That's right, not only see them, but we'll go to a beach where they roam free and get to swim in the ocean with them.
- Go to Cape of Good Hope, the southernmost point in Africa, where the Indian and the Atlantic Ocean meet.
- Bungee jump off Bloukrans Bridge, the highest bungee jump off a bridge in the world!
- Do a SCAD freefall. Yup! It will be optional, we'll have the chance to do that.
- Go on several safaris:
- A safari to see the Big 5 of Africa (Lions, Leopards, African Elephant, African Buffalo and Rhino).
- A walking safari to see rhinos. Yup. We will see rhinos ON FOOT!
- A night safari
- A gorilla safari, where we will be GUARANTEED to see and spend time with the majestic and endangered silverback gorillas in the wild at Bwindi Impenetrable Forest.
- A chimpanzee safari where we will see and spend time with chimpanzees in the wild
- A tree-climbing lion safari in Ishasha, Uganda.
- Go to an elephant sanctuary, where we won't just see, but will interact with rescued African elephants.
- Visit the Kigali Genocide Memorial in Rwanda.
- Visit traditional African villages, including a visit to a Batwa Pygmies village.
And these are just some of the things we'll do. If I were to try listing everything that we will do, there just wouldn't be enough space in the internet for it. :-D
You might have seen exciting adventures to different places in Africa, but this is the most inclusive and exciting itinerary you will ever see, and we included things that no other company has the guts to include (like swimming in Devil's Pool).
Here is our day-by-day itinerary (as always, we have a very packed itinerary but you are always welcome to take a day off at any time from the activities and just stay at our hotel if just want to relax for the day):
DAY 1. FRIDAY, OCTOBER 11: ARRIVAL, CHECK IN, TABLE MOUNTAIN AND VICTORIA & ALFRED WATERFRONT
Arrive in Cape Town and get transferred to the hotel.
At 4:00 PM, our bus will Pick us up at the hotel and take us to Table Mountain, the flat top mountain that is Cape Town's most famous postcard. We will take the tram to the top of the mountain (fare not included, but very inexpensive) and watch a beautiful sunset from the top of the mountain.
After Table Mountain, our bus will take us to the beautiful Victoria & Alfred Waterfront for dinner (dinner not included) and back to our hotel at the end of the day.
Accommodations: Townhouse Hotel, Cape Town or similar
DAY 2. SATURDAY, OCTOBER 12: FULL DAY TOUR OF CAPE TOWN AND CHEETAH ENCOUNTER
At 9:00 AM we'll start a full day bus tour of Cape Town Tour, where we will visit Robben Island (where Nelson Mandela was held prisoner for 18 of his 27 years in prison), District 6, Bo Kaap, Clifton Beaches, and Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens. We will also visit the Cheetah Outreach, a cheetah sanctuary where we will see cheetahs up close and even have the chance to play with them!
Accommodation: Townhouse Hotel, Cape Town or similar
DAY 3. SUNDAY, OCTOBER 13: CAPE OF GOOD HOPE TOUR, SWIM WITH PENGUINS AND CROC ENCOUNTER
Well have a fairly early start at 7:00 AM for our Tour to Cape Point, the southernmost point in Africa, and the place where the Atlantic and Indian Ocean meet. On the way to Cape Point we will stop at Boulder's Beach, where African penguins roam free. We will be allowed to enter the beach (there is a small entrance fee) and actually swim with the penguins!
In the afternoon, we will head out to Le Bonheur Reptiles and Adventures. There we will have the option to see crocodiles from the dry box, or the most adventurous can get in the water in the cage to see those predators up-close underwater!
Accommodations: Townhouse Hotel, Cape Town or similar
DAY 4. MONDAY, OCTOBER 14: START DRIVING THE GARDEN ROUTE. HERMANUS WHALE WATCHING
After three exciting days in South Africa's most famous city, we now start our journey on South Africa's most beautiful drive: the Garden Route. We will leave at 8:00 AM and the first city we will visit will be Hermanus. Situated just 140 kilometers from Cape Town and built between the beautiful shores and cliffs of Walker Bay, Hermanus is one of the most beautiful coastal cities of South Africa and possibly the best place in the world for whale watching. We will go on a fascinating whale watching tour where we are all-but-guaranteed to see several whales up close, including humpback whales, southern right whales and Bryde’s whales. After whale watching we will have a free day in beautiful Hermanus.
Accommodations: The Whale Coast Hotel. Two bedroom apartments or similar.
DAY 5. TUESDAY, OCTOBER 15: DRIVE TO PLETTENBERG BAY. SAFARI AT PLETTENBERG GAME RESERVE
We will leave at 8:00 AM again and get back on the road on the beautiful Garden Route towards Plettenberg Bay. Another gorgeous city along the Garden Route, Plettenberg Bay, or simply Plett is a picturesque, charming town with endless pristine beaches, tranquil lagoons, clean rivers, indigenous forests and a dramatic rocky peninsula.
We will check in at hotel and get ready for our first game drive of the trip at Plettenberg Game Reserve where we will set off to see Africa's Big 5: Lions, Leopards, Rhinos, Elephants and Buffalo. We will also see antelope, giraffes, zebras, hippos and crocodiles.
Accommodations: Beacon Island Resort or similar
DAY 6. WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 16: FREE DAY OR DAY OF EXCITING ACTIVITIES. SUNSET ELEPHANT WALK.
Today you can take a relaxing day at Plettenberg Bay swimming in the warm watered beaches of this beautiful town, or you can join in one of the exciting optional activities we will have scheduled:
- 9:00 AM: Kayak and Lilo at the Storm River. Called The Most Beautiful Adventure in South Africa, where we will kayak up the Storm River gorge in Tsitsikamma. When we reach a place where we can't kayak anymore, we will lilo. Lilo is a soft board that you lay on and paddle with your hands. Because they are lighter and smaller, they allow us to go further up the river gorge, where kayaks can't go. Lots of fun! Check it out:
- 1:30 PM: For those of us crazy enough to do it, we will bungee jump off Bloukrans Bridge, the highest bungee jump bridge in the world. Over 700 feet high!
- 4:30 PM- We will head out to Knysna Elephant Park, where we will get to walk and interact with rescued elephants!
Accommodations: Beacon Island Resort or similar
DAY 7. THURSDAY, OCTOBER 17: FLY TO JOHANNESBURG AND VISIT THE CRADLE OF HUMANKIND & STERKFONTEIN CAVES
We'll leave early In the morning (7:00 AM), we will get transferred to George airport for our 10:20 flight to Johannesburg, one of Africa’s biggest and most vibrant cities, the economic capital of Africa and the gateway to Southern Africa.
We'll arrive in Johannesburg at 12:00 and get transferred to hour hotel. At 2:00 PM we will be picked up to visit the fascinating Cradle of Humankind, a paleoanthropological site where some of the oldest humanoid fossils (some as old as 2-3 million years old) have been discovered. We will also tour the magnificent Sterkfontein Caves, caves.
After our pre historic day, nothing would be more appropriate than dinner at the Carnivore Restaurant. Called Africa's greatest eating experience, Carnivore Restaurant is an all you can eat restaurant where the waiters bring a variety of exotic African game on a spear right to your table, including ostrich, kudu and even crocodile! Check this out:
For those of us who don't want to eat kudu and crocodile, they do have regular beef and chicken, and for our vegetarian friends, they have a "herbivore" menu and even a "pescavore" menu.
Accommodations: Little Tuscany Boutique Hotel or similar
DAY 8. FRIDAY, OCTOBER 18: FULL DAY CITY TOUR OF JOHANNESBURG
Today we will do a full day Johannesburg tour. We will visit Soweto, Constitution Hill, Mandela House, Apartheid Museum, Oppenheimer cultural Centre, Hector Peterson Memorial and the Orlando Cooling Towers. At the Oralando Cooling Towers we will have the opportunity to do another unique adrenaline activity: SCAD Freefall. That, by the way, is the highest SCAD Freefall in the world! All entrance fees are included today, as well as lunch. Excluded are drinks at lunch and entrance into SCAD Freefall.
Accommodations: Little Tuscany Boutique Hotel or similar
Meals: Breakfast and Lunch.
DAY 9. SATURDAY, OCTOBER 19: FLY TO VICTORIA FALLS, VICTORIA FALLS TOUR, ZAMBEZI SUNSET CRUISE
Today we say good bye to South Africa and head out to Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe to see one of the 7 Natural Wonders of the World: The breathtaking Victoria Falls.
We will get transferred at 8:00 AM to OR Tambo International Airport for our flight 10:50 flight into Victoria Falls. We'll arrive in VFA at 12:30 and get transferred to our Hotel.
At 2:00 PM our tour guide will come to pick us up for our first of many views of Victoria Falls. We will go on a guided tour to the best locations to see the falls.
At 4:30 we'll head go on a sunset boat cruise of the Zambezi River, one of the most beautiful experiences in the Victoria Falls area. We will watch a magnificent sunset and will get to see a variety of wild life including birds, hippos, crocodiles and elephants in and by the water.
Accommodations: The Kingdom Hotel or similar
DAY 10. SUNDAY, OCTOBER 20-DEVIL'S POOL, SWIM UNDER VICTORIA FALLS, AND NIGHT SAFARI
Today is going to be one of the highlights of our trip. We will wake up early to cross the border into our third African country, Zambia and go on a tour to Livingstone Island where we will jump into the coolest infinity pool in the world: Devil's Pool. We have been seeing videos of that on the internet for years and always said "I've got to do this one day!" Well, today is the day. Bring your swimsuit and be ready to jump into the most exciting pool in the world and see Victoria Falls from an angle that very few people in the world will ever get to see: FROM THE WATER, ON TOP OF THE FALLS!
As this wasn't enough, we will then hike down to the bottom of the falls and swim right under the falls! Another experience that very few people in the world will ever even dream of having.
At night we will go on our second safari: a night safari. It's actually a sunset and night safari, starting at 4:00 PM, which happens to be one of the best times, when the animals are the most active, with predators on the prowl and pray having to stay alert. We often get to see animals that we don't see during the day.
After the safari we will have a bush dinner around a campfire with wine, cold beer, and light refreshments
Accommodations: The Kingdom Hotel or similar
Meals: Breakfast and bush dinner.
DAY 11. MONDAY, OCTOBER 21 TRADITIONAL AFRICAN VILLAGE TOUR, GORGE SWING AND RHINO SAFARI ON FOOT
Today will be another super fun day at Victoria Falls!
At 8:30 AM we will go on a tour to a traditional African village, where we will meet the locals, and get to see their daily life.
At 12:00 we will have the chance to do our last exciting adrenaline activity: a gorge swing over the Zambezi River
At 1:30 PM we will once again cross the border into Zambia and this time we go on our third safari: A walking safari to see African Rhinos. We will travel on-foot and get super close to the rhinos that live in the wild, but are used to having humans around. Although we will be completely safe, being on the ground surrounded by wild rhinos is an exciting experience!
We will be back late in the afternoon and have the rest of our last day to relax at Victoria Falls:
Accommodations: The Kingdom Hotel or similar
DAY 12. TUESDAY, OCTOBER 22: FLIGHT OVER VICTORIA FALLS (OPTIONAL) AND FLY TO RWANDA
Today we will have a free morning. Those of us who choose to do so, will have the option to do a helicopter flight over Victoria Falls and see the falls from yet another angle: high above.
At 10:30 AM we will be transferred to Victoria Falls for our 1:00 PM flight into country #4: Rwanda
We'll arrive in Kigali, Rwanda at 12:45 AM on October 23 and be transferred to our hotel close to the airport.
Accommodations: Hotel Chez Lando, Kigali or similar.
DAY 13. WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 23: KIGALI CITY TOUR AND DRIVE TO BWINDI IMPENETRABLE FOREST
In the morning, we will go for a short tour of Kigali city that includes a visit to Kimironko Market and the Kigali Genocide Memorial. We will then have lunch in Kigali, and cross the border into country #5: Uganda, The Pearl of Africa.
In Uganda we will drive for 4 hours to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park arriving in the afternoon. We will get settled in our rooms and then go for walk to the Batwa community where we will get to meet the famous Batwa Pygmies and share their unique cultural experience, the Batwa are the oldest of the indigenous tribes in Uganda.
Accommodations: Ichumbi Gorilla Lodge or similar
DAY 14. THURSDAY, OCTOBER 24: GORILLA TREKKING IN BWINDI IMPENETRABLE FOREST
We will wake up to a tasty breakfast in the biting coldness of Bwindi. Enjoy a hot cup of tea or coffee, grab our packed lunch and head out to the pack headquarters - just a short distance from the lodge. Here, we will receive briefing about the dos and don'ts of Gorilla trekking in Bwindi, know which group you will be visiting and set off with our head guide.
We will start our safari #4 and enter the forest on foot in search of the Gorillas. We may trek for several hours until we find them. When we finally find them, it will be one of the most powerful experiences of our lives, coming across one of the most powerful animals alive and being within 20 feet of them in the wild! We will be allowed to spend up to one hour with them and then head back to meet our driver/guide and transfer back to the lodge. Free evening at the lodge.
Accommodation: Ichumbi Gorilla Lodge
Meals: Breakfast and Lunch
DAY 15. FRIDAY, OCTOBER 25: BWINDI TO QUEEN ELIZABETH NATIONAL FOREST TO SEE THE TREE CLIMBING LIONS AND OTHER WILD ANIMALS
After early morning breakfast, we will transfer to Queen Elizabeth via Ishasha to see tree climbing lions and other games. We will drive to our lodge for lunch and refreshment then embark on safari #5, a game drive in Kasenyi commonly known as Kob mating grounds for great game like Lions, Buffaloes, Kobs, Antelopes, Oribi mention but a few.
Accommodations: Park View Lodge
DAY 16. SATURDAY, OCTOBER 26: TREE CLIMBING LION SAFARI AND DRIVE TO KIBALE
After breakfast, we will go on safari #6 in Ishasha in search of the tree climbing lions again. We'll also spot other animals including Elephants, Giraffes, Buffaloes and all species of antelopes at Kasenyi sector.
In the afternoon we will transfer to Kibale Forest National Park, a capital city of primates with over ten primate species recorded. We will arrive at the lodge late in the afternoon, check in, have dinner, and go for a swamp walk in Bigodi where we will get to see different local birds, including the exotic Great Blue Turaco.
Accommodations: Chimpanzee Guest House
DAY 17. OCTOBER 27: CHIMPANZEE TRACKING AND TRANSFER TO ENTEBBE INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
In the morning we will go on our last safari (#7!) to see chimpanzees in the wild. We'll spend the morning tracking the exuberant chimp families in the Kibale forest. Tracking chimpanzees in their natural habitat, as they swing from the branches in the canopy high above the forest floor, is a thrilling experience!
Since everything has to come to an end, our amazing 17-day journey has to end today. Early in the afternoon we will depart Kibale for Kampala reaching Entebbe International Airport in the evening for our flight back home with unforgettable memories in our minds and our cameras, and bragging rights from having done some of the coolest things and seeing some of the most amazing places in the planet.
PRICE and PAYMENT TERMS
- This price is for cash, check, bank transfer, or any direct form of payment. For this trip we can take the deposit via credit card, but if you want to pay for the remaining balance with a credit card, we'll have to pass the 5% credit card processing fee (for this trip, 300.00) along to you.
- As always, we are doing an unmatched itinerary, using very reputable companies, and staying at good hotels. That’s the way we do ALL our trips. We do things that nobody else does, so our itineraries can’t be compared to other itineraries out there, but if you search online you will certainly find companies doing cheap trips to Africa. If your goal is simply to do a cheap trip, we are not your group. But if you want to experience everything there is to be experienced and even unique adventures that commercial tour companies don’t offer, in a comfortable and safe way, with a great group, at a very reasonable price, then you found your group.
- A deposit of 700.00 (non-refundable) secures your reservation. Then you have until July 11, 2019 to finish making your payment. Once we receive your deposit, we will send you an invoice for the remaining amount. When you make your payment, you will be asked for your email. MAKE SURE YOU LIST AN EMAIL YOU CHECK DAILY WHEN YOU MAKE YOUR PAYMENT. THAT'S WHERE YOU'LL RECEIVE YOUR INVOICE, QUESTIONNAIRE AND ALL THE EMAILS IN REGARDS TO THE TRIP.
- Full payment is only due on July 11, 2019, three months before the trip. So you have a lot of time to pay. You can make payments in any way you prefer so long as you are fully paid by the due date.
- If you make payments or pay in full before the due date, your payments (minus the deposit) are refundable before the due date (July 11, 2019). After that, all payments are entirely non-refundable. We STRONGLY suggest that you get travel insurance to cover you in case you need to cancel your trip for any reason.
- All the hotel stays at double occupancy (please see ABOUT OCCUPANCY below).
- All the INTERNAL flights (flights during the trip, not to Cape Town and from Entebbe).
- Transportation from Cape Town airport to the hotel if you arrive within the guidelines on FLIGHT GUIDELINES below. If arrive or leave at a different time, you’ll have to arrange your own transportation. The hotel is 15 minutes away from the airport and South Africa is an English speaking country, so you shouldn't have a problem getting a shuttle to the airport either way.
- Transportation to Entebbe International Airport if you depart within the guidelines on FLIGHT GUIDELINES.
- All transportation to our scheduled activities as well as to and from terminals to hotels while with the group (if you do your own activity, arrive or leave at a different day, you’ll have to arrange your own transportation. That should not be a problem, though).
- Breakfast at all hotels.
- Flights to and from Africa (see FLIGHTS below).
- Entrance to any of the parks, museums, beaches .or attractions, unless specified on the itinerary. All the entrances are relatively inexpensive and can be purchased when we get there.
- Optional activities (bungee jumping, kayak and lilo, gorge swing, etc. )
- Meals not specifically stated in the itinerary.
- Travel insurance (highly recommended). We do offer Travel Guard travel insurance and will send you a link to purchase it once you pay your deposit. You can also get insurance with any company you would like.
- Tips to guides, drivers, staff, etc.
- Souvenirs or anything extra you would like to get.
- Any activity not described in the itinerary.
- Double occupancy: you will be paired up with someone of the same gender as a roommate. Unless you have someone that you are already coming with, of course.
- Single supplement (if you want a room for yourself for the whole trip): 2,000.00
- The last people to RSVP and pay the deposit MAY have to be put in triple occupancy rooms (if we end up with an odd number of men or women).
- We’re not setting a deadline but we were only able to get 16 spots. We STRONGLY recommend that you put your deposit down ASAP. This way we can reserve your place. For every trip we do there are people who come in too late because they kept thinking about it too much. Life does not wait for you if you hesitate. This is a once-in-a-lifetime trip. A trip you will tell your grandkids about. Don't get left out!!!
Flights to and from Africa are NOT included. Flights are very easy to book nowadays on your own and some people want to do side trips, so it gets really unpractical to include flight. Besides many of you can use miles or other ways of making your flight free or saving money if you book it by yourself. So instead of including air, we will give you guidelines so you can go to Kayak.com, Cheapoaire.com, Expedia.com, Orbitz.com, or any booking website and book your own. The best time to book a flight is usually 2-3 months before (the best day is Tuesday and the best time is between 12:00 and 3:00 PM). We will book ours at that point and e mail the group telling you what we got. If you book the same flight, we’ll meet at LAX. If not, we’ll just meet you in Cape Town.
- Arrives in Cape Town by 12:00 PM on October 11.
- Leaves Entebbe on October 27 no earlier than 9:00 PM
SOME OTHER IMPORTANT THINGS TO KNOW
- You will need to get a yellow fever vaccine AND A CARD stating that you have been vaccinated. They will require to see that before you enter Rwanda and Uganda.
- South Africa does not require a visa for American citizens for a less than 90 days stay. If you are not an American citizen, you might need a visa. Here is the visa page at the South African Embassy:
- Zimbabwe and Zambia: American citizens need a visa but it can be obtained at the time we are crossing the border. A Kaza visa that is valid for multiple entries between Zimbabwe and Zambia will cost 50.00 and all you need is a U.S. passport valid for at least 6 months. If you are not an American citizen, look at this page to see if you need to apply in advance for Zimbabwe and this page to see if you need to apply in advance for Zambia.
- Rwanda and Uganda: American citizens need a visa but that can be obtained at the time we are entering Rwanda and when crossing into Uganda. At this time the price is 50.00 per visa and we will need a visa for each. If you are not an American citizen, you might need to apply in advance. Here is the Rwandan Embassy, and here is the Ugandan Embassy so you can look into that.
- Because of the adventurous nature of our trips, our itinerary and some locations are subject to change due of weather, tides, road conditions, logistics and other unforeseen circumstances. It’s not likely, but it could happen. Whenever we make a change in the itinerary, we will do our best to keep the integrity of the trip.
- Passport is required, of course, as in all international travel. Your passport must be valid for 6 months after our return date of October 27, 2019; therefore it must be valid until at least April 27, 2020. If you don't have a valid passport or if you passport expires before April 27, 2020, make sure to get started on a new one ASAP. Here's the link for the Department of State Passport section: http://travel.state.gov//content/travel/en.html
- If you need to take care of any those issues, make sure to get on them ASAP so you don't get held up because of some unexpected delay. We've had people missing trips and losing their full payment for the trip because they waited too long, had unexpected issues come up, and couldn't take care of them before the trip started.
LEGAL DISCLAIMER AND RELEASE OF LIABILITY STATEMENT
1000 Leagues Travel, 1000 Treks, Adventure Us, SoCal Scuba and their event/assistant organizers, representatives, agents, employees, and/or any affiliated person, company or entity are not responsible for your safety. Outdoor activities are inherently dangerous. By participating in any event, you're taking responsibility for your own safety and well-being and agree to release 1000 Leagues Travel, 1000 Treks, Adventure-us, SoCal Scuba and their event/assistant organizers, representatives, agents, employees, and/or any affiliated person, company or entity from ANY responsibility, liability or claim in law or in equity.
You acknowledge and understand fully that there are risks and dangers of serious bodily injury or death that could result from your participation in this event. You have voluntarily elected to participate and FULLY ACCEPT AND ASSUME ALL RISKS AND ALL RESPONSIBILITY FOR ANY INJURY, LOSSES AND DAMAGES TO PERSON OR PROPERTY THAT INCUR AS A RESULT OF YOUR PARTICIPATION.
This is an adventure event and some of the activities you will be participating in will be physically demanding. You are discouraged to join this event if you are not in good physical condition. By signing up, you represent that you are qualified, in good health and in proper physical condition to join all the activities, and assume all responsibility for any situation that can arise from you not being physically prepared.
You agree not to sue and to release, discharge, waive, hold harmless and to indemnify 1000 leagues travel, 1000 treks, Adventure-us, SoCal Scuba and their event/assistant organizers, representatives, agents, employees, and/or any affiliated person, company or entity from and against all liabilities, claims, demands, losses, damages, suits and proceedings, regardless of the cause, including but not limited to, the negligence of any releasee, arising or resulting from your participation in these events.
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