Our affordable 6-day Explore Zimbabwe Safari kicks off with a visit to the spectacular Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe before heading to Hwange Park. Spend a full day game viewing in Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe’s biggest game reserve, home to one of Africa’s largest elephant populations and all of Zimbabwe’s endangered wild animals.
Then we visit the unique landscapes of the Matobo National Park, exploring the historic Matobo Hills and embarking on a game drive. Next, we go to the famous Great Zimbabwe Ruins, a World Heritage Site, to experience this extensive ruin.
Lastly, we cross into South Africa, stopping over at mineral hot springs to relax. Our adventure-packed Explore Zimbabwe Camping Safari comes to an end in the vibrant city of Johannesburg.
Our six-day Zimbabwe Camping Safari Adventure begins at Victoria Falls, the adventure capital of Africa. On our first morning, we visit the natural wonder of Vic Falls, the largest waterfall in the world. Victoria Falls is an awe-inspiring sight, known locally as Mosi-oa-Tunya which translates as the 'Smoke that Thunders'.
After an unforgettable start to our trip, we leave Victoria Falls town and waterfall behind, travelling south to Zimbabwe's flagship national park - Hwange.
We recommend spending a day or two at Victoria Falls, before this safari to participate in some of the numerous exciting adventure activities available in the Victoria Falls area. Pre-tour accommodation can be arranged with us.
An optional Activity Package is offered with this safari. The extra payment includes highly-recommended activities, considered as "essential activities" on the tour. This itinerary includes these activities. Ideally all of these activities would be included in the tour price, but not everyone can afford this, so we offer the option of doing the basic safari without the Activity Package. Contact African Budget Safaris for a detailed breakdown of what is included in the Activity Package. See the Full Pricing Information above for the cost of the Activity Package.
This morning we get an early start for our full day of game viewing in Hwange (Activity Package clients). The day is spent exploring the unspoilt bush in open 4x4 safari vehicles, going in search of wildlife and birds.
Hwange National Park is home the Big Five of Africa (lion, leopard, rhino, buffalo and elephant) hosting one of Africa's biggest elephant populations. Members from all of Zimbabwe’s endangered species are found here too. Resident wildlife species include cheetah, hyena, zebra, various antelopes and giraffe. Hwange provides habitat for over 100 mammal species, serving as a stronghold for endangered African wild dogs. Some 400 bird species have also been recorded in the park.
Zimbabwe’s largest game reserve, the 14650 km² Hwange Park is rated as one of Southern Africa's finest.
Leaving Hwange Park behind today, we drive to the Matobo National Park, just south of Bulawayo. Here we embark on an afternoon game drive in search of wildlife and to soak up the unique scenery.
Matobo Park covers some 44 500 hectares (424 km²) and is home to a variety of wild animals and birds. The game park has been stocked with black and white rhinos, with leopard sightings being another game viewing highlight in the park. Matobo also hosts a range of antelope species, baboons, reptiles, rock hyraxes and birds. Black eagles sightings are another safari highlight in this Zimbabwean park, said to host one of the world's highest concentrations of black eagles, if not the highest.
This scenic park also features one of the highest concentrations of traditional San rock art in Southern Africa. Established in 1953, Matobo National Park has several sites of historical significance, including the grave of the prominent settler, Cecil John Rhodes. The Matobo Hills are regarded as a sacred site by the local Shona, who perform rituals in these ancient hills. The rain shrine of the Ndebele, dedicated to the god of the ancestors, is also found in these hills. The culturally important Matobo Hills consist of exposed granite boulders that were formed millions of years ago, making for a mysterious and surreal landscape.
There are also a host of optional outdoor activities (extra cost) available in Matobo, from walking safaris to canoeing trips.
Next, our journey through Zimbabwe takes us to another treasure of this fascinating Southern African country - the world-famous Great Zimbabwe Ruins.
The impressive Great Ruins of Zimbabwe once served as a royal palace and the capital of the then Kingdom of Zimbabwe. Dating back to the Iron Age this World Heritage Site was built from the 11th century onwards. Legend has it that the ruins were once used by the Queen of Sheba.
There has been much debate and speculation regarding the origins of these ruins, but the general consensus is that the structures were constructed by the forefathers of the Shona. The building was done without the use of mortar, standing testament to the skill of the builders. This extensive complex includes walls that tower up to 11 m high, measuring as much as 5 m in thickness.
The renowned bird carvings, out of soapstone, were found here at the Great Zimbabwe Ruins. Today these 8 carved birds are featured on the Zimbabwean National Flag and replicas are often carved by locals.
Today we head to neighbouring South Africa, travelling into the beautiful Limpopo Province. Our next stop is a small resort town, called Tshipise. Here we unwind and enjoy the mineral hot springs in the afternoon.
Established in 1936, Tshipise lies at the foot of Tshipise hill, surrounded by bush landscapes scattered with old baobabs and indigenous trees. The name, Tshipise, is said to originate from the meaning to “burn, be hot” in reference to the local hot springs that reach up to 65°C.
On the final day of our safari adventure, we drive south along the Great North Road as we head to Johannesburg.
Johannesburg is the economic heart of South Africa, as well as being one of the strongest commercial centres in Africa. The dynamic city of Johannesburg, commonly known as Jo'burg, is a great place to gain insight into the cultures and history of this colourful nation.
Arriving in Johannesburg late afternoon, our 6 Day Zimbabwe Camping Safari Adventure comes to a close. This evening after the tour, fellow travellers often enjoy a final dinner together - a braai (barbecue) at our post-safari lodge or dinner at one of Johannesburg's excellent restaurants.
Please contact African Budget Safaris for more details and a breakdown of the Activity Package.
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