Cape Town to Victoria Falls (21 Days) escorted guided fully service camping tour.
On this Cape Town to Victoria Falls (21 Days) Fully Serviced Camping Safarisyou sit back, relax and take in the amazing scenery of Southern Africa while we take care of ALL your chores!
Unlike the majority of Overland Touring companies that make guests work for their supper (cooking, cleaning, setting up camp), our fully serviced camping safaris are exactly that: fully serviced.
You won’t have to lift a finger as we prepare your meals, secure your tent and make sure we don’t leave a mess.
Our fully serviced camping safaris are specially designed for seasoned (40+) travellers who want an overlanding adventure in the wild without the hassles of camping after a long day.
These camping groups are kept relatively small (up to 16 participants) with a wide range of nationalities and adventurous (40+) travelers.
Fully Serviced Camping Safaris are aimed at active individuals looking for an unforgettable holiday.
Your Quick Tour Summary
- Traversing the Kalahari and Namib deserts offers an abundance of scenic,
- wildlife and cultural attractions.
- Explore the sights of Cape Town;
- view the mighty Augrabies Falls and Fish River Canyon;
- search for wild animals of the Kgalagaladi and Etosha National Parks;
- walk the highest sand dunes of the world in the Namib Desert;
- meet the ancient Bushman and Himba tribes and relax along the Okavango and Chobe Rivers
- ending with the unforgettable sight of Victoria Falls –
experience this exciting route on a comfortable fully serviced camping safari!
Trip Highlights of this Cape Town to Victoria Falls (21 Days)
• Cape Town, & the Cape of Good Hope
• Table Mountain (own expense)
• Scenic beauty of the Namaqualand region
• Augrabies Falls National Park
• Game drives in Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park
• Fish River Canyon
• Walk giant dunes of Sossusvlei & Namib Desert
• Optional activities in Swakopmund
• Visit a traditional Himba village in Kaokoland
• Game drives in Etosha National Park
• The Okavango River
• Sunset game viewing cruise – Chobe River
• 2 nights in Victoria Falls
Accommodation: 18 nights serviced camping, 1 night hotel accommodation in Cape Town and 1 night guesthouse accommodation in Swakopmund.
Meals: All meals when camping, except 1 lunch & 1 dinner in Victoria Falls. Breakfast only in Cape Town & Swakopmund.
Group Size: 4-16 participants.
Sleeping Bag & pillow included
Pre / Post Accommodation & Transfers: May be pre-booked for Cape Town & Victoria Falls.
Important: This safari is recommended for healthy, active participants looking for an adventurous holiday.
Cape Town to Victoria Falls (21 Days) Itinerary:
DAY 1: CAPE TOWN
Set against the majestic Table Mountain, recently selected as one of the New 7 Natural Wonders of the world, Cape Town offers scenic, historic and cultural attractions.
After breakfast, you will meet your guide in the reception area of the hotel before departing on a full day peninsula tour. Leaving from the Breakwater Lodge at approximately 08h00 we will drive to Table Mountain (weather permitting) to ascend with the aerial cable cars (own expense).
The first tourists travelled to the top of Table Mountain on 4 October 1929 and since then more than 20 million people have travelled up in progressively better cable cars. Enjoy the breathtaking 360° view of Cape Town, the Atlantic Ocean, Robben Island and the neighboring peaks.
Your tour of the peninsula will continue along the Atlantic seaboard via Hout Bay and Chapman’s Peak to the Table Mountain National Park.
Here you will get the opportunity to explore Cape Point – the southwestern tip of Africa as well as the Cape of Good Hope – first rounded in 1488 by the Portuguese on their quest to establish trade routes with the East. On the way back we pass through the quaint naval village of Simon’s Town, originally named Simon’s Vlek after Simon van der Stel, the Dutch governor of the Cape Colony.
Time permitting you will visit Boulders beach to view the African Penguin colony (own expense) before returning along the Indian Ocean coastline via Fish Hoek, Kalk Bay and Muizenberg. Dinner can be enjoyed at the bustling Waterfront at clients’ own expense. Breakwater Lodge (or similar accommodation).
(Accommodated – Lunch & dinner own expense)
DAY 2: HANTAM REGION
Departing Cape Town we pass through an area known as the “Swart Land” – Jan van Riebeeck called this softly undulating country between the mountain ranges “Het Zwarte Land” (the Black Land) because of the endemic Renosterbos (Elytropappus rhinocerotis).
After the rains the Renosterbos takes on a dark appearance when viewed from the distance in large numbers. We stop at a viewpoint on the Piekenierskloof Pass to view this area. From here we pass through the picturesque Namaqualand region with spectacular views of the Knersvlakte from the Van Ryns Pass.
During the months of August – October the landscape is transformed into an explosion of color due to the numerous wild flowers of the region. (Serviced Camping – B, L, D)
DAY 3: AUGRABIES FALLS NATIONAL PARK
Leaving the Little Karoo we head north into the Green Kalahari region, thus named for the lush vegetation along the Orange river and the abundant evergreen Acacia Areoloba (Camelthorn) trees found in the area, to the Augrabies Falls National Park.
Here the mighty Orange River plummets 56m into the gorge below. This is the world’s sixth largest waterfall. The local name for these majestic falls is ‘Aukoerebis’ or ‘place of great noise from which the Trek Boers, who settled here later on, derived the name Augrabies.
The gorge at Augrabies is 240m deep and 18km long. Because of the dry environment there is not much game viewing in the area but you will have the opportunity to see the Rock Hyrax (Dassie), which is the closest living relative to the African elephant.
We spend the afternoon enjoying the falls from its many viewpoints. (Serviced Camping – B, L, D)
DAY 4/ 5: KGALAGADI TRANSFRONTIER PARK
This morning we travel through the Orange River wine region around Upington. This region produces about 40% of South Africa’s grape exports. Look out for the Sociable Weavers Nets in the Camelthorn trees and utility poles along the side of the road.
The Sociable Weaver is master of construction and nests can provide a home for up to 300 birds. We head north into the Kalahari and the magnificent Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park.
Covering over 3.6 million hectares this is one of the largest reserves in Africa. Due to sparse vegetation in the area excellent predator sightings are common including that of the famous black mane Lion.
We enjoy early morning and late afternoon game drives in the Park. (Serviced Camping – B, L, D)
DAY 6: FISH RIVER CANYON
Leaving the Kalahari region we head west and cross the border into Namibia. It was originally a German colony until the end of the First World War when the League of Nations set South Africa as administrator naming the country South West Africa. Namibia finally gained independence from South Africa on 21st March 1990.
We travel through a predominantly arid area with an average annual rainfall of less than 10ml. Fish River Canyon is the second largest in the world and largest in Africa. It is 160km long, 27km wide at its widest and at places 550m deep. The Fish River is the longest interior river in Namibia and flows intermittently, usually flooding in late summer.
The rest of the year it is a chain of long, narrow pools. Late afternoon we drive and walk along the rim of the canyon taking in the sunset from the various viewpoints. (Serviced Camping – B, L, D)
DAY 7/ 8: SESRIEM/ SOSSUSVLEI
Our journey takes us north through ever changing scenery to our campsite located on the edge of the Namib Desert, considered by many geologists to be one of the world’s oldest deserts.
We hike up Elim dune to witness the amazing sunset over the dunes. The following morning is an early departure driving 55km through the dune belt while the sun rises around us. The incredible changing colours allow amazing photo opportunities. We undertake a 5km walk to Sossusvlei and Deadvlei.
The name “Sossusvlei” is of mixed origin, and roughly means “dead end marsh”. Sossusvlei owes this name to the fact that it is a drainage basin without outflows for the ephemeral Tsauchab River. The pan holds rainwater to form a lake and due to the high clay content of the ground, water is retained for long periods of time.
Deadvlei is another clay pan, about 2 km from Sossusvlei. A notable feature of Deadvlei is that it used to be an oasis with several acacia trees. The pan is thus punctuated by blackened, dead acacia trees, in vivid contrast to the shiny white of the salty floor of the pan and the intense orange of the dunes.
This creates a particularly fascinating and surrealistic landscape, that appears in uncountable pictures and that has been used as a setting for films and videos. In the afternoon we enjoy a short hike through the Sesriem Canyon, which is a natural canyon carved by the Tsauchab river in the local sedimentary rock, about a kilometer long and up to 30 meters deep.
A portion of the canyon permanently contains water, which many animals use. (Serviced Camping – B, L, D)
DAY 9: SWAKOPMUND
Today we travel through the Kuiseb canyon, site of the famous book by Henno Martin, The Sheltering Desert before we stop off at Walvis Bay to view the flamingos (seasonal).
The Walvis Bay wetlands – the lagoon, mudflats, shoreline and salt works – constitute the single most important coastal wetland in southern Africa for migratory birds. The wetland therefore serves mainly as a dry-season and drought refuge for migrating species like the Greater and Lesser Flamingos, Plover, Grebe and African Black Oystercatcher.
We arrive in Swakopmund, a quaint beach town with a strong German influence and with a sizable part of its population still German-speaking today.
Founded in 1892 as the main harbour for German South-West Africa, Swakopmund is German for “Mouth of the Swakop” as it is at the mouth of the Swakop River. We spend the afternoon and following day exploring this German colonial town or booking one of the numerous optional excursions (own expense). Activities available include hot air ballooning or scenic flights over the vast Namib Desert.
Accommodation Dunedin Star Guesthouse (or similar). (Accommodated – B, L – dinner own account)
DAY 10: SPITZKOPPE
Leaving Swakopmund after lunch we set up camp among the boulders of the Spitzkoppe Mountains. The afternoon is free to explore the stunning surrounding area on foot. Northeast of Swakopmund is the stark grandeur of The Spitzkoppe (sharp head), one of Namibia’s most recognizable landmarks.
The summit of this imposing granite rock formation (1,728m) was first scaled only in 1946, and its shape has inspired its nickname, The Matterhorn of Africa. The spectacular setting of our remote bush camp is sure to leave a lasting impression.
(Serviced Camping – B, L, D)
DAY 11/ 12: KAOKOLAND & HIMBAS
Damaraland was a name given to the north-central part of Namibia and inhabited by the Damara people, an ethnic group who make up 8.5% of Namibia’s population.
The region is a vast and rugged terrain with mountain ranges intercepted by wide gravel plains, which run into sandy, vegetated riverbeds and hot, dry valleys. Be on the lookout for the slightly smaller, desert-adapted elephants found predominantly in the Kaokaland and Damaraland regions.
The Desert Elephant belongs to the savanna elephant and are a protected species. Consider yourself lucky if you see the elusive desert elephant or desert rhino, as these animals were subjected to poaching in the 1980’s and numbers have diminished significantly.
In the morning we visit the Himba tribe, a semi-nomadic tribe, living in scattered settlements throughout the region. They are characterised by their proud yet friendly stature and the women are noted for their unusual beauty, enhanced by intricate hairstyles and traditional dress.
The Himba are an ethnic group of about 20,000 to 50,000 people living in northern Namibia, in the Kunene region (formerly Kaokoland). They are mostly a nomadic, pastoral people, closely related to the Herero, and speak Otjihimba, a dialect of the Herero language.
A few hours are spent learning more about these fascinating people. Learn about the daily life in a Himba village or why they rub their skins with red ochre, but this should be undertaken with sensitivity and respect for their traditions and lifestyle. (Serviced Camping – B, L, D)
DAY 13/ 14: ETOSHA NATIONAL PARK
We travel via Oshakati and enter the Eastern side of Etosha. The Park was first established in 1907, when Namibia was a German colony known as South West Africa.
At the time, the park’s original 100,000 km² made it the largest game reserve in the world. Due to political changes since its original establishment, the park is now slightly less than a quarter of its original area, but still remains a very large and significant area in which wildlife is protected.
This Park is one of the most important reserves and game sanctuaries in Africa with thousands of wild animals such as blue wildebeest, springbok, zebra, kudu, giraffe, cheetah, leopard, lion and elephant making this area their home. We enjoy early morning and late afternoon game drives. Overnight Namutoni Restcamp inside Etosha.
(Serviced Camping – B, L, D)
DAY 15/ 16: OKAVANGO RIVER
Leaving Etosha we enter the Caprivi, sometimes called the Caprivi Strip, Caprivi Panhandle or the Okavango Strip and formally known as Itenge.
It is a narrow protrusion of Namibia eastwards about 450 km, between Botswana to the south, Angola and Zambia to the north, and the Okavango Region to the west.
We spend the night set amongst the lush vegetation overlooking the Okavango River. It is the fourth-longest river system in southern Africa, running southeastward for 1,600 km.
It begins in Angola, where it is known as the Cubango River. Further south it forms part of the border between Angola and Namibia, and then flows into Botswana, draining into the Moremi Game Reserve. The following day is free for optional excursions (own account) such as boat cruises & game drives.
(Serviced Camping – B, L, D)
DAY 17/ 18: CHOBE RIVER
Crossing into Botswana via the Chobe National Park we overnight on the banks of the Chobe River. Chobe is famous for its beautiful scenery, magnificent sunsets and abundance of wildlife and birdlife. Chobe National park was officially declared a national park in 1967.
The park is probably best known for its huge herds of Elephants which number in excess of 50 000. The park is dominated by the Chobe River, which runs through the park and where animals are regularly spotted coming to drink.
Habitat’s found in the Chobe National Park range from flood plains, Mopani trees, baobab trees, acacia woodlands, to verdant flood grasslands and thickets bordering the Chobe River.
The following afternoon we enjoy a sunset Game viewing boat cruise on the Chobe River. An optional morning Game Drive is possible (own account). (Serviced Camping – B, L, D)
DAY 19/ 20: VICTORIA FALLS
Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park (otherwise known as Victoria Falls) is a UNESCO world heritage site. The Park covers 66 km2 from the Songwe Gorge below the falls in a northwest arc along about 20 km of the Zambian riverbank.
Two countries – Zambia and Zimbabwe, share the magnificent falls. Nothing can compare to viewing the awesome power of ‘The Smoke that thunders” for the first time.
There will be plenty of opportunity to view the Falls ‘up close and personal’ by traversing the many walkways in and around the rain forest that surrounds the many view points (entrance fee own account). In the wet season, be sure to wear a raincoat as the spray can give you a thorough drenching!
Victoria Falls is also the “adventure capital” of Southern Africa and there are many optional activities on offer to wet your appetite.
These range from Elephant back safaris to game drives in the nearby national park, scenic micro light or helicopter flights or for the more adventurous white water rafting or bungi jumping. Victoria Falls also has many markets where you can browse for African curios.
(Serviced Camping – All meals excluding 1 lunch & 1 dinner on day 20)
DAY 21: VICTORIA FALLS
Tour ends after breakfast. (B)
This itinerary will depend on local conditions.