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A comprehensive camping trip to top destinations in South Africa, Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe. This scenic, cultural and wildlife trip starts in Cape Town and ends in Johannesburg, South Africa.
First, this camping safari travels to South Africa's Cederberg region, then we camp on the banks of the Orange River before viewing the Fish River Canyon in Namibia. Explore the Naukluft National Park next, visiting Sossusvlei Dunes, Deadvlei and Sesriem Canyon, and continue to coastal Swakopmund. Experience Spitzkoppe and a Himba community before going game viewing in the famous Etosha National Park, then heading to Windhoek.
Cross into Botswana, encountering the San and travelling to an exclusive camp in the untamed Okavango Delta for the wilderness experience of a lifetime. Continue east via the fringes of Makgadigadi Pans to Nata and then on to Chobe National Park which we explore on an afternoon game drive and sunset boat cruise. See the mighty Victoria Falls, in Zimbabwe, and enjoy optional adventure activities, before driving back through Botswana into South Africa.
Lastly, we explore the world-renowned Kruger National Park where we will go in search of Africa's Big 5 and the abundance of other wildlife found in this vast game park.
During this trip, you are likely to come across activities that encourage tourists to participate in lion, elephant or other wildlife interaction. This includes walking with lions, riding elephants and any other tourist operation putting travellers in close contact with animals that would normally live wild and separate from human contact.
We absolutely do not encourage or endorse this type of wildlife interaction operation. For more information on why this is not good for Africa's wild animals, please see our detailed blog post on the subject.
This Cape Town to Kruger Park Camping Safari departs from the picturesque city of Cape Town, stopping to at Table View to photograph or simply admire the panoramic views of the city and Table Mountain from afar.
Then we continue into the Cape Winelands, South Africa's top wine-producing region, where we do some wine tasting at a local farm. Our next stop is the Spice Route, a wine farm and artisanal hub bordering the town of Paarl. Here we have lunch and experience a bit of Cape Culture, before travelling into the Cederberg Mountains past farmstalls selling local delights.
Known for its rugged mountains, verdant valleys and citrus farms, the beautiful Cederberg area is named after the endemic and endangered Clanwilliam Cedar tree. The Cederberg is famous for its hiking trails and the indigenous rooibos plants that only grow here, and are used to produce a hugely popular, health tea.
Arriving at our first overnight camp in the scenic Olifants River Valley, we relax and enjoy dinner together.
This safari comes with an optional Activity Package at an additional cost. The itinerary includes these highly-recommended activities. Contact African Budget Safaris for a detailed breakdown of what is included in the Activity Package and see the Full Pricing Information above for the cost of the Activity Package.
We travel through the arid Namaqualand region, famous for its abundance of colourful indigenous wildflowers in spring (August & September) and continue on to the Gariep, formerly Orange, River.
We stop in the remote town of Springbok for last minute supplies before heading to our campsite set on the banks of the Orange River, which forms the border between South Africa and Namibia. The night is spent getting to know one another over a hearty meal under the starry African sky.
In the morning we have the opportunity to experience South Africa's longest river, the Gariep (Orange) River by canoe, or spend some time relaxing at the riverside camp. Letting the current carry us along, this is a gentle paddle down the river - a great way to take in unspoilt nature.
Later this morning we cross into Namibia travelling north to the mighty Fish River Canyon, the second largest canyon in the world. In the afternoon we take a scenic hike along the rim of the canyon in order to gain some perspective on just how large this natural phenomenon is, enjoying fantastic photographic opportunities as the sun sets.
This morning we set off on our long drive into the Namib Desert area of Namibia. Tonight we camp in the desert near the Namib-Naukluft National Park, experiencing the vast star-studded sky and silence of the Namib Desert, occasionally interrupted by jackal calls and the unique barking sound of the gecko! Facilities at our desert camp include drinkable water, a bar, a swimming pool, hot showers, shared ablutions and a shop.
The Namib-Naukluft National Park, one of Namibia’s geographic gems, is said to be amongst Africa's largest game parks. The national park incorporates large parts of the Namib Desert, considered the world's oldest desert.
Today we rise early to hike up Dune 45 in time for a spectacular desert sunrise over the endless dunes. The hike up this well-known dune is relatively easy and well worth it, for the panoramic views and excellent photographic opportunities from the top.
Then we have breakfast and go to the famous Sossusvlei Dunes to see the towering, vivid red-orange dunes this sandy area is famous for. A 4x4 transfer takes us to Sossusvlei and Deadvlei pan to see the stark pans dotted with gnarled dead trees that contrast with the cracked white earth and surrounding orange-red dunes. Next, we take a walk in the Sesriem Canyon which stretches about a kilometre in length and reaches up to 30 meters deep. We walk along the floor of Sesriem Canyon, dotted with shallow pools. The canyon was formed by the Tsauchab River flowing through sedimentary rock deposited about 20 million years ago.
Later we are joined by an expert local guide for a nature walk in the Namib, exploring this unique desert ecosystem as part of the Activity Package. The local guides share their detailed knowledge of the ancient Namib desert with us as we walk. We also learn how the indigenous San (Bushman) people have for decades survived in the harsh desert environments of Southern Africa. After our nature walk, we head to our overnight camp to wash away the dust with a hot shower or a refreshing dip in the pool and a cool drink in the bar.
Crossing the Tropic of Capricorn we make our way through the desert to the Atlantic coast of Namibia. Our first stop is Walvis Bay where we see many waterbirds, including flamingos, in season. Then it’s on to Swakopmund, the adventure capital of Namibia, where you will be briefed on the many optional activities available for the next day.
In the evening you can enjoy some excellent seafood at a local restaurant as well as the vibrant local nightlife. Our Swakopmund accommodation is in twin rooms with en-suite bathrooms at a guest lodge, featuring a bar and internet.
Today is left free for you to explore the charming town of Swakopmund, where German colonial influences can still be seen, or try one of the many adventure activities available in this popular coastal town. Take a quad bike over the dunes, try sandboarding, skydiving or take a cruise to see dolphins along the coast of Swakopmund. We spend another night at the friendly guest house in Swakopmund.
Leaving coastal Swakopmund we drive north along the dramatic Skeleton Coast, renowned for the shipwrecks scattered along these treacherous shores. Along the way, we pause in the interesting town of Wlotskasbaken to view the lichen colonies in the area.
Then we drive inland to Spitzkoppe, also known as the ‘Matterhorn of Namibia’. Spitzkoppe is a stark area of dramatic exposed granite peaks, with the highest outcrop rising to over 1780m above sea level. This afternoon we join a local guide for a walk in the rugged Spitzkoppe Mountain area. The guided walk takes us to some of the old San (Bushmen) rock art of Spitzkoppe.
After admiring the rock formations of Spitzkoppe we drive to our camp in the hills of Damaraland, near Khorixas town.
Today we visit an educational village, established to portray the Himba way of life, without impacting negatively on the truly traditional communities living in natural environments.
The Himba were once a semi-nomadic, pastoral tribe with distinctive traditions and cultural practices, but today few Himba still live off the land as their ancestors did, remaining unchanged by western influences. The disappearing culture of the striking Himba is characterized by their style of dress, particularly their hairstyles and elaborate jewellery. The Himba that have not become westernized still speak a dialect of the old Herero language and traditionally breed cattle or goats.
Visiting this representation of a traditional Himba village supports the education of orphaned Himba children who get to learn about their own vanishing culture and heritage. At the end of the tour, we stop in at a Himba market where you can browse and buy some curios.
After our cultural experience with the Himba of Kunene, we continue to our overnight camp in Opuwo.
On day 10 we make our way to Etosha National Park, for superb game viewing. We explore the rugged African bush around the vast Etosha Pan, after which the national park is named. The 22 000 km² Etosha Park is dominated by the salt pan, with the word Etosha meaning ‘Great White Place of Dry Water’ in the local Ovambo language. Etosha's sparse vegetation improves chances of sighting wildlife as the animals are less hidden in the bush. Our game drives are conducted in the safari truck which gives us a raised view out over the plains.
We will visit waterholes in search of the wild animals that come to drink at these sites, as well as exploring as much as we can of Etosha. Etosha Park is home to a variety of animals, plants and birds and is known as a top safari destination in Africa. Etosha hosts some rare and endangered species, including unusual desert species. We will have plenty to see on our game drives in this vast park inhabited by 144 mammal species such as elephant, giraffe, blue wildebeest, eland, damara dik-dik, lion, cheetah, leopard, wildcat, hyena, and jackal. As well as being home to 340 bird species, 110 reptile species, 16 amphibian species and even a species of fish.
We camp inside Etosha, at Okaukuejo, Halali or Namutoni camp, all of which boast floodlit waterholes where wild animals can be spotted at night. Each overnight camp features a variety of facilities including a bar, swimming pool and shop.
You also have the option of embarking on night game drives on either of the nights in Etosha Park.
After an early morning game drive in Etosha Park, we make our way to Namibia's capital city via an arts and crafts market where you can browse and purchase some authentic African creations.
Windhoek is situated at almost the exact centre of Namibia, on the central plateau. Arriving in Windhoek your guide takes you on a short walking tour of the city centre, before heading to our overnight lodge. Tonight you have the option of eating out at Windhoek’s most famous eatery, Joe’s Beer House, which is known for its venison dishes and quirky ambience.
Departing from Windhoek we make our way out of Namibia, crossing into Botswana. From the border, we drive through the arid Kalahari area of western Botswana, dotted with rural villages and roaming livestock.
Later we arrive at our lodge in Ghanzi, and this evening we experience some traditional tribal dancing by the San community. The traditional San (Bushman) people are the original inhabitants of Southern Africa having lived in the area for over 30 000 years, surviving the harsh conditions as nomadic hunter-gatherers.
Tonight our camp offers hot showers in the shared ablutions and a bar, just north of Ghanzi.
On the morning of day 14 you have the option of joining a guided walk with the local San, learning more about their indigenous knowledge and culture, as well as the flora and fauna of the arid region. Walking with the San gives you insight into their incredible survival techniques, from medicinal plant use to hunting and making fire.
Then we drive to the busy safari town of Maun, gateway to the Okavango Delta - the world’s largest inland delta. The Delta system is made up of a series of rivers, floodplains and waterways fed by water from the Angolan Highlands, during the rainy season. The Okavango River has no outlet to the sea, so it empties into the sands of the Kalahari Desert, irrigating some 15,000 km². The pristine Okavango Delta is the natural jewel of Botswana and one of the top wildlife destinations for travellers to Africa.
In the afternoon you have the chance to take an optional flight over the Okavango Delta (weather allowing). This scenic flight provides sweeping aerial views over the vast labyrinth of delta waterways and plains, where wildlife can be spotted roaming.
This evening we prepare for our trip (included in the Activity Package) into one of the truly wild places on earth. Those who opted not to take the Activity Package will be staying behind at the base camp in Maun, where optional activities are available and meals are included. Please bring along a small backpack (overnight bag) for our delta excursion, as space is limited on the transfers in and out of the delta.
Waking on day 15 we have breakfast and make our way into this amazing wetland area, where our remote delta camp awaits.
We typically spend our time as follows, but activities depend on water levels and seasonal conditions in the delta. After settling in at our exclusive camp we set off on an afternoon mokoro canoe trip in the private concession area. Mekoros are the traditional dug-out vessels used to navigate the labyrinth of shallow delta channels. Local polers (guides that pole the canoes through the water) take us on a relaxing mokoro ride ending with a spectacular sunset and sundowners in the bush. Returning to camp we spend the night around our campfire under starry skies in this wild place, surrounded by the sounds of nature.
We're up early on day 16, following the reed-lined channels of the pristine delta on a peaceful mokoro trip. Gliding through the delta by mokoro is the best way to appreciate this natural environment and get a closer look at the marvellous creatures and plants. Sit back as local guides pole you through the pretty lily pads to one of the secluded islands, where we stop for a walk.
On our nature walk, we learn about the delta from our guide, looking closely at the plants and signs of wildlife. The wild animals of the delta are unaccustomed to people, but we may see some of these shy inhabitants on our walk. Returning from our nature walk, we spend time unwinding at camp, enjoying the quiet natural setting. Later in the afternoon, we take a cruise along the intricate waterways of the Okavango Delta.
A truly wild African bush experience - camping in the Okavango Delta, you will be immersed in the wilderness, experiencing the sights, sounds and smells of this unspoiled area and its inhabitants up close.
We leave the magical Okavango Delta returning to the safari truck for our drive to Nata. Travelling east to Nata, we skirt the northern edge of the Makgadigadi Salt Pans passing giant baobab trees along the roadside.
En route we break our drive to take a peek at the expansive salt pans stretching out to the south. The Makgadikgadi Pans form one of the largest salt pan complexes in the world, creating a striking desert landscape.
This afternoon you have the option of taking a sunset drive onto the flat plains of the Makgadikgadi Pans region near Nata.
Today we have breakfast and continue to Kasane, near Chobe National Park. Reaching Kasane we continue to our safari camp, located along the Chobe River a few kilometres from Chobe National Park. Lunch is served from the safari truck at the camp which features a restaurant, bar, shared ablutions and a swimming pool.
In the afternoon we set off on a 4x4 game drive in Chobe National Park, renowned for its huge population of migratory elephants and large buffalo herds. Chobe Park is the second largest national park in Botswana, encompassing diverse habitats from lush plains and wooded grasslands to dense forests and swamps. After spotting an array of wildlife up close in the bush we set off on a sunset boat cruise along Chobe River. From the water, we get up close to plenty of wild animals such as hippos, buffalos, antelopes and elephants making for excellent photographic opportunities. The sunset boat cruise also offers outstanding bird watching!
This morning we cross into Zimbabwe, travelling to Victoria Falls National Park where we will experience the might of the great Zambezi River.
Victoria Falls is one of the most acclaimed natural wonders of the world and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Vic Falls is considered the largest sheet of falling water in the world at 1700m wide and over 100m high. The local name for the falls is Mosi-oa-Tunya meaning The Smoke that Thunders, which you will be able to fully appreciate when you witness the impressive spray rising up from the waterfall as it roars into the gorge below.
In the afternoon you can embark on an optional adventure activity, go for coffee, visit a craft market or relax at the hotel and explore the historic town of Victoria Falls. Tonight you have the option of eating out in Victoria Falls town and your guide tells you more about the activities available here, helping you to choose activities for the following day.
We stay in twin rooms with en-suite bathrooms that have hot showers, at a hotel in Victoria Falls. The hotel has a swimming pool, bar, restaurant and laundry services.
Most people spend the day participating in a few of the exciting adventure activities available at Victoria Falls.
This part of the Zambezi River is famous for offering some of the best whitewater rafting in the world, an unforgettable experience! Other optional adventures include helicopter and microlight flights over Vic Falls, zip-line rides in Batoka Gorge, trips to Livingstone Island and bungee jumping from Victoria Falls Bridge.
Leaving the magnificent Victoria Falls early in the morning, we drive south through Botswana to Francistown. We overnight at a pretty camp just outside of Francistown in central Botswana, enjoying the pool at this lovely spot.
In the morning, we set off early along the Great North Road to our next stop - the dynamic city of Johannesburg.
We travel south through the changing landscapes of northern South Africa, passing from open bushveld dotted with giant baobabs to fields of citrus and maize and then into the densely populated and industrialised Highveld and Gauteng Province, the economic powerhouse of southern Africa.
Along the way we pass through Pretoria, South Africa’s administrative capital city, known as Jacaranda city because of the lovely Jacaranda trees growing here. Our Delta, Chobe & Kruger Camping Safari arrives in bustling Johannesburg, the City of Gold, in the late afternoon.
Tonight you are invited to join a traditional South African style barbecue, called a braai, at the lodge. This optional braai can be booked through your guide on the previous day.
This Cape to Kruger Budget Safari adventure departs from Johannesburg early in the morning, heading east to Kruger National Park via the scenic Mpumalanga Province of South Africa.
Our next destination is the world-renowned Kruger National Park, one of Africa's top game parks. We stay at a safari camp located in a private wildlife concession area within the Kruger National Park. After settling in at camp we embark on a sunset game drive in the concession area, looking out for the Big Five and other wildlife. This evening we enjoy dinner around the glowing campfire under a blanket of stars.
Today we explore Kruger National Park, which covers almost 2 million hectares of South African Lowveld. Our full day of game viewing takes us in search of the abundance of wildlife, including the Big Five of Africa (elephant, lion, leopard, rhino and buffalo), found in this vast wilderness area. Kruger protects an unrivalled diversity of plant and animal species, including around 336 tree species, 49 fish species, 34 amphibian species, 114 species of reptiles, 507 bird and 147 mammal species.
The Activity Package includes a whole day of 4x4 game drives in open safari vehicles - a great way to take in the sights, sounds and smells of nature. The open 4x4 vehicles are designed to offer excellent visibility and better photographic opportunities than enclosed tour vehicles. Returning to camp in the mid-afternoon we set off on a sunset game drive with sundowners (included in Activity Package).
For those that opted not to take the Activity Package a full-day game drive in the safari truck is included in the tour price. Our elevated safari truck offers clear views out over the game park, improving your chances of sighting game and big cats that would otherwise be hidden in the bush.
Our rewarding game drive in this massive wildlife area is followed by a relaxing night at the safari camp inside Kruger.
Day 25 kicks off with an early morning bush walk in Kruger Park. Venturing into the bush on foot provides a closer look at the plants, smaller creatures and signs of animal life. Walking in the bush is also an exhilarating experience as we may come across big game at any moment.
After our thrilling game walk, we visit the Panorama Route. We journey through the rugged northern Drakensberg mountain range, passing through one of the most beautiful parts of South Africa. Along the way, we stop to admire the sweeping views of the impressive Blyde River Canyon from God's Window viewpoint. We also stop to take in the stunning views of the Three Rondavels and Bourke’s Luck Potholes formations in Blyde River Canyon.
This evening we enjoy a local dance performance and dinner around the flickering campfire.
On the last morning, we head into Kruger Park for one more game drive - a final chance to spot wildlife in the African bush.
After our final game drive, we travel back to the vibrant city of Johannesburg, where this affordable Cape Town to Kruger Park Safari comes to an end. Most tour groups choose to enjoy dinner together, either at a local restaurant or the post-tour lodge which offers a traditional braai (barbecue) that can be booked through your guide on day 25.
Our intimate delta camp is located inside a 100 000 hectare private concession area, offering a unique delta experience. The secluded camp looks out over peaceful delta waterways, blending in with the wild African bush around it.
What makes this exclusive camp particularly special is that it only caters for one group of travellers at a time, so you will only share your delta adventure with your fellow safari-goers. Exploring this private delta concession with our experienced guides, you won't come across other groups, allowing you to escape the crowds. This laid-back camp is located in the remote northern section of the delta, in a game-rich wilderness area attracting buffalo herds and other wild animals, as well as a wide array of birds.
Stay in pre-erected dome tents fitted with camping beds and mattresses, at this bush camp with a low environmental impact on the wilderness. The camp features ablution facilities with hot showers, a bar and lounge area, a plunge pool and a spacious, open-sided boma with kitchen facilities.
The camp is ideal for immersing yourself in nature, listening to the sounds of wildlife and getting close to nature. Activities offered at the delta camp include game drives, bush walks, mokoro trips, sunset boat cruises and sundowners on one of the islands, and boma dinners.
For up-to-date and confirmed pricing info for optional items, please drop us an enquiry.
A fantastic adrenalin and adventure filled few days in beautiful Cape Town. From the thrill of diving with Great White Sharks to the bliss of exploring the scenic Cape Wine Route, staying in a comfortable guesthouse!
An amazing 3-day city package including an airport transfer, 3 nights B&B accommodation at Sweetest Guesthouses, a half-day city tour and a full-day Cape Peninsula tour - an unforgettable introduction to beautiful Cape Town.
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