13-Day Lesotho and Garden Route - North

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Highlights of this trip include:

  • Stony Point Penguin Colony
  • Visit Chocolate & Wine tasting
  • Stop at Ronnie’s Sex Shop (Country Pub)
  • George Museum & Gardens
  • Natures Valley Nature Walk
  • Tsitsikamma National Park entrance and hike with your guide
  • 2x Afternoon game drive in Addo National Park
  • Lesotho Village Visit, Hike with Guide
  • Oliviers Hoek pass
  • Hike with your guide in Ukhahlamba-Drakensberg Park
  • Visit to the Mandela Capture Site and Howick Falls

Mountainous Views, The Phenomenal Durban Beaches and The Wonders of Addo National Park

This adventure takes you along the South African coast from Cape Town to Durban.

Discover an indigenous forest in the heart of the Garden Route & Lesotho and visit some of the most scenic attractions.

On the way to Durban, we visit a number of world-renowned National Parks including Addo Elephant National Park where you can tick off the Big 5.

In Addo, you’ll observe nature thriving in its most natural environment. Furthermore there are many exciting activities available on this route including wine tasting, bungee jumping at the Bloukrans Bungy (worlds highest commercial bungee bridge), canoeing, game driving and exploring new surrounds; however; if you just want to kick off your shoes and take a walk along one of Durban’s beaches, you can do that too! Durban is also a well-known surfing destination.

Day 1 – The Cape Whale Coast Route

Made up of a collection of villages, farms, rivers, bays, coves and valleys, the Cape Whale Coast is a pristine stretch of the South African coastline which runs from the town of Rooiels for roughly 150km, to the east. We have a full day ahead of us which takes us from the bustling city centre of Cape Town via the vineyards to the town of Hermanus - not forgetting a stop at the largest breeding colony of the African Penguin, Stony Point Nature Reserve. During the months of July to November, you may be lucky enough to see the southern right whales that visit the bay in Hermanus.

 

Day 2 - Route 62 – Oudtshoorn

Crossing the Hottentots-Holland Mountains this morning we set out for the Klein Karoo and our overnight stop in Oudtshoorn. We follow the scenic Route 62 today, stopping to experience one of the many farm stalls on the way. One of the more quirky highlights today is Ronnie’s Sex Shop, not a sex shop at all, but a rather interesting country pub! Our day ends with a guided tour of the famous Cango Caves, we can only marvel at the astonishing formations that have formed in these impressive limestone caves.

Meals Included

  • Breakfast 
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

 

Day 3 - Heart of Garden Route

Our morning starts as we make our way over the Outeniqua Mountains and descend to the beautiful Garden route coastline below. Our first stop for the day is a visit to the George Museum, a quirky and interesting museum displaying the local timber trade of the area. In the coming days, we spend time hiking, relaxing at the beach and sampling the many optional activities available.

Meals Included

  • Breakfast

 

Day 4 – Tsitsikamma

The Garden Route is a treasure trove of beautiful beaches, forest walks and an exciting menu of optional adventures. While our morning is set aside for some relaxation on the beaches of Plettenberg Bay, today offers a number of optional activities and your guide will assist you to get the most out the day. This afternoon we have the opportunity to visit the hidden gem of Nature’s Valley, this beautiful village offers us a chance to enjoy a hike or simply relax on the pristine beach in this little paradise. In order to make the most of this day, the truck will run a set schedule and you are free to join or leave at the places that interest you.

Meals Included

  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

 

Day 5 - Tsitsikamma

Tsitsikamma National Park is one of South Africa’s premier marine reserves and this morning we set out to explore the rugged coastline on foot. Our hike along the Waterfall Trail sees us cover the first section of the world renowned Otter Trail, this is not an easy hike and those who prefer a more leisurely option can make use of the boardwalks to the Storms River Mouth. We return after our hike and will have the chance to enjoy the Woodcutters Journey in the afternoon – experiencing the uniqueness of the Tsitsikamma biome and learning about the history of the area and it’s indigenous fauna & flora.

Meals Included

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch 
  • Dinner

 

Day 6 - Greater Addo Elephant National Park area

This morning we set out for the Eastern Cape and the Addo National Park. We make a stop this morning in the surfing mecca of Jeffrey’s Bay, famous for its waves. You have the opportunity to visit the small surfing museum, catch a quick wave or simply enjoy a cup of coffee overlooking these famous waves. This afternoon we will make our first visit to seek the elephants after which Addo is named.

Meals Included

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch 
  • Dinner

 

Day 7 – Greater Addo Elephant National Park area

This morning you will have the option to visit Port Elizabeth before returning to camp for lunch. In the afternoon we visit Addo, famed for the elephants after which the park was named. Recent expansion has seen Addo grow to become the third largest of South Africa’s National Parks. The unique vegetation of Addo supports a wide variety of wildlife and we will spend the afternoon in search of the animals that call Addo home.

Meals Included

  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

 

Day 8 – Graaff Reinet

The historic town of Graaff-Reinet nestles in the heartland of the Great Karoo and offers a unique insight into the history of this arid region. It is also the fourth oldest town in the country. This evening you will have the opportunity to join a sundowner excursion to the Valley of Desolation, this unique valley offers a panoramic view over the town and the wide open plains stretching out below. Kindly note that during the winter months, this activity will become a Sunrise excursion to the valley of Desolation the following morning

Meals Included

  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

 

Day 9 - Lesotho – Malealea

This morning we cut across the vast expanse of the Great Karoo, our destination is nestled in the heights of Lesotho. This autonomous mountain kingdom boasts the highest peaks in Southern Africa and is one of the highest countries in the world, the entire kingdom lies over 1000m above sea level. Having crossed the mighty Orange River, we enter the border of Lesotho and make the climb to our camp set high in the mountains.

Meals Included

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch 
  • Dinner

 

Day 10 - Lesotho – Malealea

The clean air of the mountains accompanies us this morning as we explore the mountains on foot, our hike concludes with a village visit and the opportunity to gain insight into the community that calls these mountains home. The Basotho are famous for their traditional hats, blankets, and their sturdy ponies. Basotho ponies are renowned for their surefootedness in the mountains and you have the opportunity of an optional pony trek this afternoon to experience this first-hand

Meals Included

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch 
  • Dinner

 

Day 11 - South Africa – uKhahlamba Drakensberg Park

We exit Lesotho and travel through the sandstone cliffs of Golden Gate. Our destination is the mountains of the Drakensberg. Running the length of the Kwazulu-Natal province, the Ukuhlamba Drakensberg Park is a UNESCO recognised world heritage site. Whether you go by the Zulu name uKhahlamba, meaning 'barrier of spears', or the Afrikaans name Drakensberge, meaning 'dragon mountains', these towering mountains are a hiker’s paradise and worthy of exploration.

Meals Included

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch 
  • Dinner

 

Day 12 - UKhahlamba Drakensberg Park

We set out this morning for a lengthy hike. Along our way we will have the opportunity to view examples of San rock art with a local guide. While we encourage everyone to make the most of the day in mountains, we may offer separate options depending on the activity level of the group. With a number of trails available we can ensure that we cater to every need, the most important aim is to ensure everyone enjoys this mountain paradise at their own pace.

Meals Included

  • Breakfast 
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

 

Day 13 - Kwa Zulu Natal Coast – Durban

It’s all downhill as we leave the mountain scenery en-route to the Kwazulu Natal Coast. On the 5th August 1962, police waved down a car on a lonely country road in KwaZulu-Natal. At the wheel was Nelson Mandela. He was arrested and spent 27 years in prison. Today you will have the opportunity to visit this historic capture site, marked by an impressive sculpture in honour of “Madiba”. We will also stop at the Howick Falls to listen to the power of the falls and take some photos at the view point. Then it’s onto the bustling city of Durban is South Africa’s largest port where your tour will come to an end upon arrival in the city.

Meals Included

  • Breakfast 

 

This itinerary has been written with the Activity Package items included. If you wish to participate in all the activities listed, you will need to purchase the Activity Package.

 

Activity Package

  • Cango Caves basic tour R110
  • Tsitsikamma Woodcutters Journey R300
  • Valley of Desolation tour R380

The tour will start from a dedicated point in Cape Town (information will be provided upon booking) 

The tour will end at a dedicated point in Durban (information will be provided upon booking) 

Below are some ideas and helpful tips on what you specifically need for this trip.

ESSENTIALS:

  • Sleeping bag. We recommend a 3–4 season sleeping bag because it can get very cold at night in winter months in desert and mountainous regions. Sleeping bags are also available for hire (if pre-booked). Please speak to your sales consultant if you wish to hire one.
  • Pillow, travel pillow or pillowcase (to put your soft jacket in)
  • Closed in shoes. As this trip includes camping and/or bush walking we highly recommend that you take a pair of comfortable, closed-in walking shoes. Closed-in shoes will help to protect your feet from cuts and scratches when walking through bush/grass-lands, and will also act as a barrier protection in rare cases against bites or stings from dangerous animals in this environment.
  • Lightweight clothing. You will need to bring a mixture of lightweight clothing, some warm items for the evenings, and long shirts and pants for protection against mosquitoes in the malaria areas. Clothes should be easy to wash and dry. Some people like to take jeans for evenings out but they can be tough to dry and should not be used for trekking. Avoid nylon and other synthetics, which can be very uncomfortable in hot weather. Ex-military or military style clothing and equipment is NOT recommended.
  • A waterproof/windproof jacket is a good idea for wet days, and early morning or evening game activities when it can be cool.
  • Warm fleece and beanie for morning and evening game drives.
  • Sun protection - hat, sunscreen, sunglasses
  • Towel (or travel towel)

RECOMMENDED:

  • A simple plastic bag/waterproof toiletry bag (that can hang on a nail on the back of a door) will be useful to keep your clothes dry inside basic camp shower structures.
  • A good quality, high-beam headlamp or torch for around the campsite at night. Some campsites have limited lighting and are powered by generators that switch off at a particular time. Although the trucks do carry lamps for meal times it’s a good idea to bring a headlamp to navigate the campsites and in particular, going to the bathroom in the middle of the night.
  • Personal medical kit. Your guide will carry a large kit but we recommend you carry items such as mild painkillers, electrolytes, anti-diarrhoeal, antibacterial gel, wet wipes, bandaids/plasters etc.
  • Insect repellent.
  • Water bottle. We recommend at least a 1-litre capacity. Our vehicle has large tanks of treated water for your refills.
  • Camera with a spare battery or power bank.
  • Overnight bag. To take 2 days' worth of luggage on your Okavango Delta portion of the itinerary
  • Binoculars
  • A small bottle of biodegradable laundry soap for hand washing your clothes
  • Earplugs to guard against a snoring tent-mate
  • A good book, a journal or smartphone with music for the long drives

OPTIONAL:

  • Sleep sheet. If you are traveling during the hot season you may wish to also pack a sleep sheet so you will be comfortable no matter what the weather.
  • Thermarest. While we provide a basic camping mattress for each client, some travelers find they like the extra comfort of a double layer.

LUGGAGE LIMIT:

The weight limit for luggage on all trucks is a strict maximum of 20kg. Your main luggage will be stored in a compartment at the back of the truck. Traditional, framed suitcases are not recommended as they are large and can damage other travelers belongings while on the road. Backpacks or duffel bags are an ideal choice.

VALUABLES:

Please try to avoid bringing unnecessary valuables, and use your hotel safe and the safe on the overland truck to store the bulk of your money, passport, and airline tickets. It’s also a good idea to purchase a money belt or pouch that is easily hidden. We strongly recommend that you photocopy all important documents e.g. air tickets, passport, vaccination certificate, etc. and keep the copies separate from the originals. While not valid, a photocopy makes it very much easier to obtain replacements if necessary.

POWER:

Our overland vehicles are equipped with multiple power boards which may be used at the crew’s discretion, however, do bear in mind that only a minimal number of items can be charged at a time and will not be allowed if there is a risk of running the vehicle’s batteries low. Some campsites have electricity and charging of devices is advised before checking out the following day. We also recommend power banks and multi-country power converters.

SPECIAL NOTE: CONSERVATIVE DRESS FOR WOMEN:

In many parts of Africa, female travelers should dress modestly as there is a wide range of cultural differences. We recommend wearing skirts or shorts that reach just above the knee and tops that cover shoulders at a minimum.

Meals

12 breakfasts, 7 lunches, 10 dinners

Transport

Overland vehicle

Accommodation

  • Camping option
  • Accommodated option

Included activities

  • Entrance fees to National Parks
  • Afternoon game drive in Addo National Park
  • Lesotho Village Visit and hike with guide
  • Oliviers Hoek pass
  • Hike with your guide in Ukhahlamba-Drakensberg Park
  • Visit to the Mandela Capture Site and the Howick Falls
  • Zulu Cultural evening
  • Nature Walk with guide through Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary
  • All meals not listed on the itinerary 
  • All optional activities as listed in the itinerary
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Pre and post tour transport and activities
  1. Cancellation charges less than 14 Days in advance: No refund
  2. Cancellation charges between 15-30 days in advance: 75% of full value plus R100 admin fee
  3. Cancellation charges between 31 - 60 days in advance: 50% of full value plus R100 admin fee
  4. Cancellation charges between 31 - 60 days in advance: Full refund minus 5% admin fee
  5. Changes in dates/transfer of ownership to be handled on a case to case basis