South Africa: Walking & Wildlife

15 days
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Small Group Tour
Rising high above the veld, the Drakensberg, which translates as Dragon Mountain, forms an imposing, dramatic and quintessentially South African scene, perfect for exploring on foot. Along with the fantastic walking opportunities, we take time to discover the amazing wildlife of the country, hoping to see elephants, lions, rhinos, leopards, giraffes, cheetahs...
26%
$5,468
From$4,050
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Overview

Trip type
Small Group Tour
Lodging level
Standard - 3 star
Physical level
Moderate
Trip pace
Full schedule

Highlights

    • Embark on several days hiking in the spectacular Drakensberg Mountains
    • Explore Royal Natal National Park and the amazing rock formation, the Amphitheatre
    • Walk through the mountainous terrain of Eswatini (Swaziland)
    • Take morning and afternoon game drives in Kruger National Park
    • Enjoy a game walk and drive in a private game reserve

What's this trip about?

    Rising high above the veld, the Drakensberg, which translates as Dragon Mountain, forms an imposing, dramatic and quintessentially South African scene, perfect for exploring on foot. Along with the fantastic walking opportunities, we take time to discover the amazing wildlife of the country, hoping to see elephants, lions, rhinos, leopards, giraffes, cheetahs and much more. Complementing our journey are more walks and visits to Eswatini (Swaziland), St Lucia and the Battlefields.Hike through forests, plains and mountains and track wildlife on foot, by boat and 4x4

Details

Itinerary focusClassic Highlights
Group sizeIntimate group - max of 12 people
Age range16 years and up
Flights and transportAll internal ground transport included
Start CityJohannesburg
End CityJohannesburg

Travel Themes

  • Cultural
  • Hiking & Walking
  • National Parks
  • Nature & Wildlife
  • Safari

Destinations

  • Africa
  • South Africa

Attractions

  • Johannesburg

Activities

  • Culture
  • Hiking
  • Nature
  • Safari
  • Wildlife viewing

Trip includes

    • All breakfasts, 11 lunches, seven dinners
    • All accommodation (see below)
    • All transport and listed activities
    • Tour leader throughout

Popular Trips

Itinerary

Travel Map

Day 1 Start Johannesburg; to Graskop

We meet at the start hotel before collecting the rest of the group from the airport. We then transfer to the town of Graskop, which perched on the edge of the Mpumalanga escarpment. It is a long drive but we stop at regular intervals to take in the spectacular scenery...

Day 2 Explore the Panorama Route; walk the Leopard, Guineafowl and Kadishi-Tufa trails

We drive through some beautiful countryside this morning, starting with the stunning views at God's Window. If we are lucky, God's Blanket may be down, a majestic cloud inversion that gives you the feeling of being on top of the world. We visit the fascinating rock fo...

Day 3 Drive to a private game reserve; afternoon game drive

After breakfast, we drive to a private game reserve in the Greater Kruger area, our base for the next two days. We have time to relax and enjoy the views from camp before heading out for an afternoon game drive in search of the resident buffalo, zebra, elephant and the elusive leopard. Accommodation: Makuwa Safari Lodge (or similar)

Day 4 Morning game walk; free afternoon

We have an early start this morning, as we drive 40 minutes from our accommodation and meet out specialist guide in Hoedspruit. It's then a short drive to Pridelands, a wildlife-rich private reserve that forms part of the Greater Kruger National Park and is open to th...

Day 5 Transfer to Kruger National Park; afternoon game drive

We head to Kruger National Park, justifiably one of the most famous wildlife parks in the world. It is also one of the oldest, established by the South African president Paul Kruger in 1898. It has arguably the greatest variety of animals of any park in Africa, with l...

Day 6 Morning game drive in Kruger; transfer to Eswatini (Swaziland)

We get up before sunrise for a game drive at, arguably, the best time of day for game-spotting. We return to camp for breakfast and to pack up before moving onto a new country: Eswatini (Swaziland). We leave the park at around lunch time and have a short stop to resup...

Day 7 Full day walk in Malolotja

There is superb flora here and we take a daywalk on one of the picturesque walking trails. More than 280 bird species have been spotted in this reserve, as have many antelope species. You will have great views and the chance to spot various eagles or even the very rar...

Day 8 Visit craft market; to St Lucia

Today we head out of Eswatini (Swaziland) and back into South Africa. On the way, we visit Ezulwini Valley Craft Market before heading south through rural Eswatini (Swaziland). Upon leaving Eswatini (Swaziland), we move on to St Lucia. The small town of St Lucia is bo...

Day 9 Morning boat cruise; afternoon visit Cape Vidal

Getting up early, we head down to the dock and board a boat on the nearby lake. We spend two hours exploring by boat with an excellent chance of seeing some of the many resident hippos, crocodiles and fish eagles. We return to our apartments for breakfast and then pac...

Day 10 Transfer to battlefields; hike the fugitive trail

Leaving the coast behind, we head 185mi (300km) towards the battlefields where the British and Zulus fought in 1879. After lunch, we go on a four-hour hike along the fugitive trail, which follows the route taken by the British survivors from the battle of Isandlwana. ...

Day 11 To Royal Natal National Park; afternoon walk

We continue our journey to the beautiful Royal Natal National Park, known from being home to the distinctive natural Amphitheatre. The Drakensberg is a basalt escarpment forming the border between Kwa-Zulu Natal and Lesotho and continuing into the Free State. It means...

Day 12 Tugela Gorge hike

Today, we follow the Thukela River, past protea trees (the national flower of South Africa as well as the name of their cricket team), indigenous yellow wood forest and mountainous grasslands to the natural Amphitheatre and Thukela Waterfall viewpoint. The walk takes ...

Day 13 Full-day hike to Witsieshoek

As the bus takes our luggage to our next lodge, we head along trails by foot. The start of our trail follows a contour line and takes us via Tiger Falls and Gudu Falls. We then head up as we walk through the Mahai Valley crossing the river and walking via the crack pa...

Day 14 Hike to Tugela Falls, the second tallest waterfall in the world

In the morning, we drive 9mi (15km) to the trek start point at the Sentinel Gate. From here, we trek along the edge of the mountains, possibly chaperoned by mountain baboons or, if we are lucky, by the resident bearded vultures, up to the ladders, which take us to the...

Day 15 Drive through Golden Gate National Park en route to Johannesburg; end Johannesburg.

There is an optional three-hour final morning walk in these wonderful mountains, with a local guide, before driving back to Johannesburg in time for our flight this evening. The trip ends upon arrival in Johannesburg. Please note: If you are organising your own flights, these should not be earlier than the group flights due to the distance we need to travel back to the airport.

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Dates & Availability

Price From $4,050
Price per day$270
Last Updated: 6/14/2024
Departure Date
Finish Date
Shared Room
Single Room
Availability
17 Aug 2024
31 Aug 2024
$4,050
$4,845
21 Sep 2024
05 Oct 2024
$4,275
$5,070
12 Oct 2024
26 Oct 2024
$4,200
$4,995
16 Nov 2024
30 Nov 2024
$4,500
$5,295
11 Jan 2025
25 Jan 2025
$4,725
$5,603
22 Feb 2025
08 Mar 2025
$4,725
$5,603
15 Mar 2025
29 Mar 2025
$4,725
$5,603
26 Apr 2025
10 May 2025
$4,725
$5,603
28 Jun 2025
12 Jul 2025
$4,725
$5,603
26 Jul 2025
09 Aug 2025
$4,725
$5,603

Check Current Availability, prices, specials with Exodus Travels.

The total tour cost includes the tour price (regular or promotional) and the compulsory local payment. The promotional price is subject to change. Check directly with the operator for the latest price offer. The tour operator requires you to pay only the tour price to purchase your travel. The compulsory local payment will be paid when you join the trip. All prices are based on double, twin or triple share occupancy. Solo passengers will be accommodated in a double, twin or triple room according to availability with a passenger(s) of the same gender. Single supplement only needs to be paid if the passenger does not want to share and requests their own room. Discounts can only be applied at the time of booking and cannot be added at a later date, regardless of any changes made to the original booking.

Prices may vary due to local taxes and trip seasonality. Click "Request Info" to inquire directly with the tour operator for the final trip price.

Exodus Travels Reviews & Ratings

4.7/5  Excellent
Excellent
13,010
Great
3,259
Average
612
Disappointing
143
Terrible
185
A

Anonymous

Aug 2018

Provided byExodus Travels

Full on and very enjoyable

Really enjoyed this trip even though we probably did not chose the best time of year to do this, April. Sayin that the weather was quite kind to us. Letaba Game Re...

A

Anonymous

Mar 2018

Provided byExodus Travels

South Africa Walking and Wildlife

Well, what a trip! Soaking up the sights and sounds of South Africa and Swaziland was truly an amazing experience. There were many unexpected inspirational moments...

A

Anonymous

Jan 2018

Provided byExodus Travels

Walking, Thunder and Wildlife

Another outstanding trip from Exodus. It is very cleverly consrtucted, gradually building to the climax in the Drakensberg mountains. There were huge contrasts in ...

A

Anonymous

Jan 2018

Provided byExodus Travels

First time in Africa

This was my second trip with Exodus, and I was confident that I was going to have a good time, get good value for money, and a wonderful experience. I was not disa...

A

Anonymous

Jan 2018

Provided byExodus Travels

South Africa: landscapes, wildlife and battlefields

The Exodus holiday in South Africa was a wonderful introduction to African landscapes and wildlife. I have travelled widely in my life but with little experience o...

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Tour Operator

Exodus Travels

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It is all about adventure. That is what Exodus was founded upon and what the company is still all about. Discovering countries, cultures, environments, cities, mountain ranges, deserts, coasts and jungles; exploring this amazing planet we all live on.

At Exodus, we know what makes you tick when it comes to holidays. It’s a desire shared by so many others. A yearning to visit new places and come home with a real sense of what they’re all about. This means delving into local traditions, cultures, cuisine, lifestyles – anything that contributes to its unique identity. At the same time, we always remember that we are only guests. So we travel courteously and respectfully, in smaller groups to minimise our impact, to ensure that every Exodus holiday is a beneficial experience for everyone involved.

This is a philosophy we take with us around the world, helping you reach some incredible destinations on 500 itineraries across over 90 separate countries. We also strive to provide as much flexibility and choice as we possibly can, making it simple for you to experience a very different holiday.

Exodus started life on 4 February 1974 when two friends got together to provide an overland truck to travel to the Minaret of Jam, deep in the heart of the Hindu Kush, the most inaccessible of the world’s great monuments.

All our office staff have a passion for travel and adventure, and between us we’ve notched up experience that spans 171 different countries. That’s not all. In their former lives, our team members have been professional archaeologists, wildlife guides, overland drivers, mountain leaders, diving and ski specialists and mountain bike gurus – so no-one is better placed to create tours that appeal to a wide range of specialist interests.

Their care in putting all the details in place really shines through too. Extensive planning, research, fact-finding and training are a sign of our commitment to providing a holiday where your enjoyment, value for money and safety come first. It’s a telling reason why we remain one of the leading worldwide adventure tour companies. It is no exaggeration to say that our tour leaders can make a world of difference to the enjoyment of your holiday – so we choose them carefully. The result is that, in 2013, 93% of our clients stated that their leader exceeded their expectations. Where possible, we train and employ local leaders because they can provide invaluable insights that enrich the trip. What’s more, this investment in local staff really helps us benefit both them and their community.

Why we love this operator
With a huge range of trip styles and themes, they cater to basically every type of traveler out there- even those with super specific interests.
What they’re known for
Global trips to both classic and exotic destinations with a focus on themed adventures, exciting physical activities and discovery of local culture.

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Logistics

What's excluded

    • Travel insurance
    • Single accommodation
    • Visas or vaccinations

Accommodation

9 days walking Mixture of wildlife spotting and walking Altitude max 2900m, average 1250m Group normally 4 to 12, plus local leader. Min age 16 yrs 11 nights log cabins and chalets and 3 nights permanent tented camp All breakfasts, 14 lunches and 11 dinners included,All nights will be in chalets, log cabins and a permanent tented camp. The cabins in Thendele have three rooms sharing two bathrooms and a lounge, and in both St Lucia and Eswatini (Swaziland), the cabins consist of two rooms sharing a bathroom and a lounge. The accommodation in Eswatini (Swaziland) is of a more rustic nature, however, it is located in a beautiful setting within the game reserve which removes the need for transfers and our stay there contributes to efforts made in conserving and preserving their natural heritage. It is possible to get laundry done in Eswatini (Swaziland). In the Kruger Park, we stay in a permanent tented camp for four nights with shared washing facilities. Wifi is available most nights but is not always very reliable. Single rooms are available throughout. Please note that on the nights in the Drakensberg and in Eswatini (Swaziland) you might share a chalet/cabin with other members of the group. However, you will still have a single room to yourself.
Cancellation policy

The cancellation policies of this trip when booked through Travelstride are determined by the stated policies of the tour operator - Exodus Travels.

If you or any other member of your party decides to cancel a confirmed booking you must notify Travelstride in writing. Your notice of cancellation will only take effect when it is received in writing by Travelstride and will be effective from the date on which we receive it.

If You Cancel Your Holiday
You, or any member of your party, may cancel your travel arrangements at any time. Written notification from the lead name or your travel agent must be received at our offices. 

Since we incur costs in canceling your travel arrangements, you will have to pay cancellation charges as follows (see also the exceptions below): 

  • More than 42 days - No cancellation fee. Deposit can be transferred to a new booking departing within 2 years of date of travel of original booking. Any remaining balance will be refundedThis excludes all non-refundable costs as set out in clause 4 above (for example international and domestic flights and local services).
  • Between 41 and 21 days (inclusive) - No cancellation fee. Balance and deposit can be transferred to a new booking departing within 2 years of date of travel of original bookingThis excludes all non-refundable costs as further explained in clause 4 above (for example international and domestic flights and local services).
  • Between 20 and 15 days (inclusive) - 80% of the holiday cost
  • 14 days or less; or failure to join the holiday (inclusive) - 100% of the holiday cost

Certain trips may involve different cancellation charges; you will be advised if this is applicable to your holiday during the booking process.For Polar holidays, the following cancellation charges will be made for all Polar holidays. Period before departure in which you notify us: 

Cancelation charge

  • More than 133 days - Deposit only
  • 133 days or less (or failure to join the holiday) (inclusive) - 100% of the holiday cost

Notes (i) Your deposit is non-refundable, even if the cancellation charge calculated is lower than the deposit amount paid; (ii) If the reason for your cancellation is covered under the terms of your insurance policy, you may be able to reclaim these charges; (iii) certain travel arrangements may be subject to higher cancellation charges and could incur a cancellation charge of up to 100% of that part of the arrangements from the moment the booking is confirmed.

If You Change Your Booking

If, after our Booking Confirmation has been issued, you wish to change your travel arrangements in any way, for example your chosen departure date or accommodation, we will do our utmost to make these changes but it may not always be possible. Any request for changes to be made must be in writing from the lead name or your travel agent. You will be asked to pay an administration charge of $60, and any further cost we incur in making this alteration (including those charged by third party suppliers who provide the component parts of your booking).  You should be aware that these costs could increase the closer to the departure date that changes are made and you should contact us as soon as possible. Note: Certain travel arrangements may not be changeable after a reservation has been made and any alteration request could incur a cancellation charge of up to 100% of that part of the arrangements.

You can transfer your booking to another person, who satisfies all the conditions that apply to this booking, by giving us notice in writing at least 7 days before departure provided that the new lead passenger accepts the transfer and these Terms and Conditions. Both you and the new traveler are responsible for paying all costs we incur in making the transfer. Please bear in mind that certain airlines and other transport providers treat changes as a cancellation and charge accordingly, up to 100% of the cost for that part of the arrangement. Where applicable these charges will be passed on to you.

If We Cancel Your Booking

Exodus reserves the right to cancel an itinerary before departure for any reason whatsoever, including too few participants ,logistical problems, a Force Majeure Event (as defined in Section 8), or any other circumstances that may make operation of the trip inadvisable. All trip payments received will be promptly refunded, and this refund will be the limit of Exodus’s liability without any further obligation on Exodus’s part. Exodus is not responsible for any expenses incurred by trip members in preparing for the trip, including non-refundable or penalty-carrying airline tickets, special clothing, visa or passport fees, or other trip-related expenses.

If We Change Your Booking

  1. Changes to the price. We can change your holiday price after you’ve booked, only in certain circumstances. Changes in the price of the carriage of passengers resulting from changes to the cost of fuel or other power sources, the level of taxes or fees imposed by third parties including tourist taxes, landing taxes or embarkation or disembarkation fees at ports and airports, or exchange rates mean that the price of your travel arrangements may change after you have booked.

  2. Changes other than the price. It is a term of your booking that we are able to make changes to any aspect of your booking. If the change is insignificant, we will ensure that you are notified about it. Examples of insignificant changes include alteration of your accommodation to another of the same or higher standard. If we are forced by circumstances beyond our control to alter significantly any of the main characteristics of the travel services that make up your package you will have the rights set out below.

    2.1 - We will contact you and you will have the choice of accepting the change or having a refund of all monies paid. You can also accept an alternative holiday, where we offer one (we will refund any price difference if the alternative is of a lower value). We will tell you the procedure for making your choice. Please read any notification of changes carefully and respond promptly as if you do not respond to us within the timescale given your booking may be canceled.

    2.2 - If you choose to accept a refund then that is the only liability we have and we will not be liable for any further sums, compensation or otherwise and you are advised to adequately insure yourselves against cancellation for any reason

Please note that insurance premiums and amendments charges are not refundable in any circumstances. 

Once you have put down a deposit for a tour, you are unable to cancel and re-book within a promotional period and we reserve the right to amend the pricing on any new booking you make within that time. If you cancel a tour and book the same tour under a promotional code, we reserve the right to decline the booking.

Important Note: Certain arrangements may not be amended after they have been confirmed and any alteration or cancellation could incur a cancellation charge of up to 100% of that part of the arrangements in addition to the charge above.

If the reason for your cancellation is covered under the terms of your insurance policy, you may be able to reclaim these charges.

Where possible, we will deduct the cancellation charge(s) from any monies you have already paid to us.

For more additional details, see the booking conditions of TruTravels at the following web address: https://www.exodustravels.com/us/about-exodus/exodus-booking-conditions.

Travel Insurance
We strongly recommend purchasing travel insurance alongside your travel package to safeguard against unforeseen circumstances such as medical expenses, trip cancellations, and other contingencies. It offers you peace of mind and ensures you are prepared for unexpected events that may occur before or during your journey
Visa requirements
Visa requirements vary depending on your country of origin and your country of destination. It is your responsibility to familiarize yourself with the relevant requirements. For a handy tool that can help you quickly find the requirements, please visit this link .
Meals Included
All breakfasts, 11 lunches, seven dinners included. In the itinerary, we state which meals are included on which day. The list below provides an indication of what these will consist of: Breakfast – cereals, coffee, tea and toast, the occasional cooked breakfast. Lunch – cheese, cold meats, salads, bread or rolls. Dinner – potjies (stew), braais (barbecue), stir fries, pasta. Most generally cooked on the open fire. We need at least two weeks’ notice to deal with special dietary requirements (eg vegetarian or allergies.) For this reason, if you did not indicate these on your booking form please advise your sales representative as soon as possible. The tour leaders do all the shopping, meal planning and cooking for each group. They will always try to obtain fresh produce wherever possible. Each tour has two cool boxes for meats and fresh produce and one cool box for cold drinks. We supply the following drinks: fruit squash served with breakfast and tea or coffee served with breakfast and dinner. All other beverages will be at your own expense. For meals not included, dinners can cost on average £12‐£18 (US$20‐US$30) per person and lunches £5-£8 (US$8-US$13). On days when the group are on morning game walks or drives, we have an early morning cup of tea or coffee and rusks followed by the walk. Once we return to camp, we have a large brunch around 11am. In the early afternoon, we have a snack-style lunch and dinner will be served after completion of the optional game drives. The water provided on this trip is safe and clean drinking water, normally from boreholes. It is not bottled water, however. If you would rather have bottled water then this will be at your expense, though we would encourage you to make use of the safe drinking water provided as this helps diminish plastic consumption.
Age Requirements
16 years and up
Additional Information
  • Eight days of walking
  • A bush walk
  • Mixture of spotting wildlife and walking
  • Altitude max: 9,515ft (2,900m); average: 4,100ft (1,250m)
  • Group normally 4 to 12, plus local leader. Minimum age: 16
  • 11 nights in log cabins and chalets and three nights in permanent tented camp
Trip ID
exodus-TZS

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