9 Days Active Botswana and Cape Town from US$5,514.-pp

Active South Africa and Botswana is an epic experience combining hiking and biking – some of it in “Big-5 Territory” – kayaking with penguins with a traditional safari experience. Explore   Southern Botswana’s Mashatu Game Reserve as well as scenic Cape Town and surrounds.  A once-in-a-lifetime exploration to find your soul in Africa’s wilderness. Unique option to expand your photographic skills – take as few or as many sessions as you like. The “hide” offers impressive close up views of wildlife at the waterhole.

You even have an option to dive with Great White Sharks – no diving experience required.

AccommodationDestinationBasisRoom TypeDuration
Mashatu Tent CampMashatu Game ReserveFB+1x Luxury Tent4 Nights
Commodore HotelCape TownB&B1x Standard Room4 Nights

Key
B&B: Bed and Breakfast
FB+: Full Board Plus – Dinner, Bed, Breakfast, Lunch and Activities

Price

US$5,514.- April through Sep 2022

US$5,738.- April through October 2023

Price per person, double occupancy

Included

Accommodation and meals as per package; vehicle safaris, walking and biking safari activities as per package; , Full day private Sea Kayaking with penguins and tour of the Cape of Good Hope,  National Park fees, transfers, intra Africa flights as per package, airport meet and greet;

Option: Full day private hiking table mountain tour with lunch (US$180.-pp)

Excluded

International flight USA to Johannesburg and from Cape Town, optional activities and tours,

Journey starts in Johannesburg and ends in Cape Town.


Note: This trip can be started any day. Flight to Mashatu only on Thurdays and Sundays. Activities can be interchanged as per your desire. Please see at the end of the itinerary for more photographic options.

Day 1:            Mashatu Tent Camp, Mashatu Game Reserve       

Botswana

Botswana is well known for having some of the best wilderness and wildlife areas on the African continent. With almost 40% of its land area devoted to national parks, reserves and wildlife management areas you can travel through many parts of the country has the feeling of moving through an immense Nature wonderland. The first – and most lasting impressions – will be of vast expanses of uninhabited wilderness stretching from horizon to horizon, the sensation of limitless space, astoundingly rich wildlife and bird viewing, night skies littered with stars and heavenly bodies of an unimaginable brilliance, and stunning sunsets of unearthly beauty. Experience here the stunning beauty of the world’s largest intact inland Delta – the Okavango; the unimaginable vastness of the world’s second largest game reserve – the Central Kalahari Game Reserve; the isolation and other-worldliness of the Makgadikgadi – uninhabited pans the size of Portugal; and the astoundingly prolific wildlife of the Chobe National Park. Botswana is the last stronghold for a number of endangered bird and mammal species, making your safari experience even more memorable, and at times you will feel simply surrounded by wild animals.

Mashatu Game Reserve

Mashatu Game Reserve in the south eastern extreme of Botswana offers a unique portfolio of adventure safari experiences on a reserve known as the Land of Giants, named after the largest herds of elephant on private land in Africa. In addition to the camps (luxury villas, luxury all-suite and tented) and excellent daily sightings of all the African predators (lion, leopard, cheetah, hyena, jackal and African wildcat), Mashatu is unquestionably the adventure safari destination for energetic travelers and multi-generational families. With five diverse ways to experience Africa’s wildlife, Mashatu offers, to complement the vehicle safaris conducted by guides with an average of 14 years’ experience on Mashatu; activities including the world-class photographic experience including an underground elephant hide, videography safaris, mountain biking safaris, horse safaris and walking safaris. The single fastest growth is in the photographic experience where excellent ‘Tuli’ light has engendered interest in Mashatu from all over the world. All our adventure experiences cater for the safari-goer who yearns for a more active and intimate safari holiday.

Day Itinerary

Today fly to Johannesburg and continue on to Botswana where our representative will meet you. Game drive from the airport to the lodge!

Overnight: Mashatu Tent Camp        View iBrochure

Located in Mashatu Game Reserve, 30 minutes from Mashatu Lodge, the Mashatu Tent Camp offers guests the ultimate, intimate bush experience. Eight spacious, comfortable, and completely private tents rest below enormous trees, each on their own platform with private outdoor en-suite facilities. Imagine showering under the stars! Meals are served either in the open-air thatched gazebo, or in the boma (enclosure) overlooking the floodlit, well-populated waterhole where bush enthusiasts can witness animals going about their day. The camp’s plunge pool invites guests to cool off and escape the relentless heat typical of the summer months.

Luxury Tent

Eight completely private tents are tucked under the branches of enormous trees, accessible via meandering pathways. The tents themselves are spacious and comfortable – large enough that adults need not duck to move around. Each is mounted on a concrete platform and has its own private outdoor en-suite facilities, including W.C. and shower. Imagine showering under the stars!

Basis

Full Board Plus – Dinner, Bed, Breakfast, Lunch and Activities

Day 2:            Mashatu Tent Camp, Mashatu Game Reserve       

Day Itinerary

Get to know Mashatu with vehicle game drive and a walking safari today.

Activities

MorningGame Drives
AfternoonMashatu Walking Safari
 Boma Dinner

Optional

Mashatu Photographic Hides US$80 for approximately 3 hour session

Game Drives

Safari vehicles meander into the bush twice a day, bringing visitors into close contact with an Africa that is largely known only in wildlife documentaries and glossy books. But this Africa is real, and distinctly tangible through all six senses.

Mashatu Walking Safaris

There are a wide variety of landscapes, vegetation types and eco-systems on Mashatu which should be all experienced first-hand. Walking Mashatu offers the wilderness lover, the bird watcher, the keen botanist, the intrepid hiker and the nature enthusiast the ultimate experience whilst walking in the Land of Giants.

The Mashatu Walking Safari can be enjoyed as an ad-hoc activity from Mashatu Lodge or Tent Camp, or as an overnight multi-day adventure.

Adhoc Walking Safari: The perfect opportunity to combine exercise with focusing on the smaller and no less interesting creatures of Mashatu, most often missed when out in a vehicle on safari. Although many opportunities arise to view big game, the focus is on the little, often overlooked aspects of the bush – tracks, plants, insects, etc. A walker is part of the environment and not merely a spectator.  There is no better place to enjoy a walking safari than in The Land of the Giants. This diverse and mammoth piece of Africa is the perfect place to witness the intricacies of the wild animals of Africa, to learn about the hidden secrets of nature, to find the smaller creatures hidden in their bush homes and to see how the eco-system involves the inter-relatedness of species.

Multi-day Adventure option that needs to be arranged in advance: Tailor-made walking safaris suit the disposition of the clients on safari. Distances covered per day depend on the ability and preference of the guests. There is no limit on the number of nights spent on the walking safari. It is however suggested that at least three nights are booked. Guests camp out in one of three camps specifically designed for comfort in the bush. Luggage is transported by vehicle between camps to give guest the opportunity to have full enjoyment of the walk, without having to carry any luggage.

A walking safari means coming closer to the roar of the lion, the howl of the hyena, the cry of the jackal and the whistle of the pearl-spotted owl during starry nights around the campfire. A walking safari compliments the magnificence of a sunrise, a full moon and sightings simply not possible from a vehicle or the comforts of a lodge.

Boma Dinner

Meals are a sumptuous celebration of traditional African Cuisine – flavoursome and homely. Fresh fruits, vegetables, home-made breads and pies, succulent meat dishes and delicious desserts will appeal to a guest who appreciates informal cuisine at its best.

Morning pre-game drive snacks, brunch and high tea are served on the shaded terrace.

Dinners are served around a blazing fire in the reed-enclosed boma (African structure), exposing diners to the glorious night sky above.

Mashatu Photographic Hides in lieu of game drive or walk option:

This concession on Mashatu comprises a resident wildlife photographer, based at Mashatu Lodge and photographic hides in two selected sites plus a mobile hide on the reserve. Guests at Mashatu can enlist the photographic expertise of the photographer or simply visit one of the hides during their stay which will be charged as an additional activity over and above the daily rates for accommodation.

The photographic hide is a structure built to maximise the photographic potential of the animals that visit them. The hide can be used to view wildlife in the normal manner, but have been positioned with consideration of the angle of the sun, the background and the angle which the viewer occupies in relation to the animals and birds.

The most famous of these hides is the ‘elephant hide’, renowned for the photographic images taken of elephant and other animals drinking from the water’s edge. The PhotoMashatu hide offers both the amateur or professional photographer the most unique and delightful opportunities to record a memorable safari at Mashatu.

Hide next to water hole

Basis

Full Board Plus – Dinner, Bed, Breakfast, Lunch and Activities

Day 3:            Mashatu Tent Camp, Mashatu Game Reserve       

Day Itinerary

Take a cycle safari today – it is an experience you will never forget. You may also book an optional photographic session. See details below.

Activities

MorningMashatu Cycle Safaris
AfternoonGame Drives

Optional in lieu of vehicle safari:

Mashatu Photographic Hide : US$85
Limpopo Horse Safaris:US$85

Mashatu Cycle Safaris

The more adventurous may join a mountain bike safari in the company of an armed and highly experienced guide.  On a bike, the cyclist is, in effect, conducting his/her own safari and gets to enjoy the reserve and its inhabitants from a completely different perspective. The groups of cyclists meander along ancient elephant paths. The exhilaration of cycling amongst the ‘Giants of Mashatu’ is awesome, and should be enjoyed at least once on a safari for anyone with a little interest in cycling. Rides are generally enjoyed early morning.

Optional multi day cycle to be booked in advance: Guests can also book a ‘camp wild’ cycling experience comprising up to three days on a cycling safari. These safaris depart in the winter months where Cycle Mashatu offers a 3 night guided mountain biking adventure. Enjoy riding elephant manicured game paths, sleeping under the starlit skies and exploring the ancient Land of the Giants. Cycle Mashatu tailors the tours to suit the group’s fitness and strength and provides vehicle support, meals, and camp amenities. Many would argue that you have not lived until you have cycled in the Land of the Giants – a thrilling experience indeed.

Horse Safaris

This operator is honoured with the reputation of having the finest schooled horses on the African continent. Surrounded by a multitude of Africa’s flora and fauna, come and explore this breath-taking terrain from horseback, in the company of experienced African equestrian hosts who have extensive knowledge and experience of the bush. There is nothing more exhilarating than galloping on horseback alongside herds of antelope, over the wild open plains of Mashatu, kicking dust into the sunset sky.

The Horse Safari can be enjoyed as an ad-hoc activity or as an overnight multi-day adventure.

Adhoc Horse Safari: the operator is recognized as having the best schooled horses of all the horse safari operators in Africa. The experiences may differ from Mashatu to the Okavango Delta, to the deserts of Namibia to the migrations of Tanzania and Kenya, but one thing agreed on by all visitors and horse operators alike, is that the horses are the most well trained as well as the ‘most forward’ of the other operators.

Multi-day Adventure option to be booked in advance if interested: There are combinations of horse safaris from which the guest can choose including multi-day, camp wild experiences.

Please note that only competent and regular horse riders should consider this activity as the adventure operator will, in the interests of safety, test the skills and ability of the horse riders. The experienced staff will terminate the reservation if the guest is not skilled enough to ride through wild country where dangerous animals roam.

Basis

Full Board Plus – Dinner, Bed, Breakfast, Lunch and Activities

Day 4:            Mashatu Tent Camp, Mashatu Game Reserve       

Activities

Game Drives

Optional

Mashatu Photographic Hides

Basis

Full Board Plus – Dinner, Bed, Breakfast, Lunch and Activities

Day 5:            Commodore Hotel, Cape Town           

South Africa

This vast country is undoubtedly one of the most culturally and geographically diverse places on earth. Fondly known by locals as the ‘Rainbow Nation’, South Africa has 11 official languages and its multicultural inhabitants are influenced by a fascinating mix of cultures. Discover the gourmet restaurants, impressive art scene, vibrant nightlife and beautiful beaches of Cape Town; enjoy a local braai (barbecue) in the Soweto township; browse the bustling Indian markets in Durban; or sample some of the world’s finest wines at the myriad wine estates dotting the Cape Winelands. Some historical attractions to explore include the Zululand battlefields of KwaZulu-Natal, the Apartheid Museum in Johannesburg and Robben Island, just off the coast of Cape Town. Above all else, its remarkably untamed wilderness with its astonishing range of wildlife roaming freely across massive unfenced game reserves such as the world-famous Kruger National Park. With all of this variety on offer, it is little wonder that South Africa has fast become Africa’s most popular tourist destination.

Cape Town

Cape Town is a city like no other – a vibrant melting pot alive with creativity, colors, sounds and tastes. Take in a view from above by riding the cable car to Table Mountain or check out the tiny cell Nelson Mandela was kept in on Robben Island. Visit the V&A Waterfront near your hotel, a place for shopping or just hanging out to watch the world go by. Breathtaking natural scenery, long standing cultural heritage and world-class wine production estates characterize an area known as the Wine Lands where you will can taste the wines of the region. Drive through gorgeous scenery and hamlets on the way to Cape Point, the Cape of Good Hope, a rocky coastline seafarers have respected and feared for hundreds of years. Please check your itinerary for inclusions.

Day Itinerary

After your morning game drive or walk transfer to the airport for your flight to Cape Town. Evening at your leisure. You might like to walk to the nearby V&A Waterfront.

Overnight: Commodore Hotel           View iBrochure

Overlooking the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront with views of Table Mountain, Robben Island, the Harbour and the Atlantic Ocean is the Commodore, Legacy’s flagship hotel in Cape Town. Stylish living, quality service and a tranquil setting have ensured that our guests return year after year, be it as businessmen or tourists excited to experience all that is the Mother City.

Basis

Bed and Breakfast

Day 6:            Commodore Hotel, Cape Town           

Optional

Hiking Table Mountain

Basis

Bed and Breakfast

Day 7:            Commodore Hotel, Cape Town           

Day Itinerary

Walk to the V&A Waterfront Office for scenic drive to starting point.

The beauty of Table Mountain, Lions Head and the Atlantic Sea Board coastline from the comfort of our kayaks is unrivalled.

Our 2 hour Kayak Tour will take you along the stunning Atlantic Sea Board coastline from the V&A Waterfront, past the Green Point light house, before cruising back to base.

Dolphins, seals, penguins, Sunfish and occasionally whales frequent our Cape Town waters and while we may not be lucky enough to encounter all this beautiful wildlife on every tour, we can assure you that all your senses will be tantalised.

Activities

Kayaking Tour

Basis

Bed and Breakfast

Day 8:            Commodore Hotel, Cape Town           

Day Itinerary

Today choose from the following optional tours:

Optional

Great White Shark Cage Dive
Walk To Freedom Tour Half Day
Winelands Tour Afternoon

Great White Shark Cage Dive

Rise early for a day trip to Gaans Baai’s Shark Alley, considered the Great White Capital in the World, to give yourself the experience of a life-time, a cage encounter  with one of the foremost predators in the world, the Great White Shark. Divers and non-divers alike can join in this adventure since no breathing equipment is used, you just hold your breath. You may also watch them from the top deck of the boat which, if circumstances allow, will carry on to Dyer Island to see the seals the sharks are in the vicinity for. Return to Cape Town along scenicly dramatic costal road. Breakfast and/or snack are offered on the vessel.

Please note that the drive along the coast to Gaans Baai and boat trip is a wonderful experience even if you choose not to partake in the actual cage dive. You will be able to view the sharks from the top deck of the vessel.

Walk To Freedom Tour Half Day, small group, Mon – Sat

No easy road to freedom’ was a central theme in most of the Mass Democratic Movement’s campaigns, from the early days through to the late 1980s. Any understanding of present day conditions in South Africa is greatly enhanced by looking at past injustice, the legacy of the struggle and the promise of reconstruction and development initiatives under way at present. Freedom has not come easy. This tour offers a wealth of insight into South African history. It includes a brief educational introduction to Cape Town, one of the world’s most varied and sought-after cities.

The Bo-Kaap

A look at the picturesque ‘Malay Quarter’, a dynamic, living museum and home to the oldest mosque in the Southern Hemisphere. We discover the unique culture, lifestyle and personality of the Cape Muslim community and their contribution to South Africa’s development.

District Six

As a result of the Group Areas Act, 60 000 Capetonian families were forcibly removed from this once vibrant area between 1966 and 1982. The District Six issue remains crucial. We examine the now desolate area, Zonnebloem, which was District Six and visit the living museum which attempts to represent and recapture District Six in various ways – as a fine-spun tapestry of communal life torn apart but not forgotten.

Winelands Tour Afternoon

This enchanting excursion begins with a tour through historic Stellenbosch, an architectural jewel that serves as the historic heart of the country’s wine region. A gracious blend of 18-century Cape Dutch, Georgian and Victorian buildings is evident as we drive down Dorp Street, where massive Oaks still shade original water furrows, then enjoy a wine tasting in the Stellenbosch area. A second wine tasting will be included (time permitting), before returning to Cape Town.

Basis

Bed and Breakfast

Day 9:            End of Itinerary     

Day Itinerary

Time for last minute shopping at the markets prior your flight back home.

Basis

Bed and Breakfast

DateFlightAirlineDeparture AirportTimeArrival AirportTimeClassRef
 Charter Flight Johannesburg Mashatu Tent Camp   
 Charter Flight Mashatu Tent Camp Johannesburg   
 Scheduled OR Tambo International Airport [JNB] Cape Town   

Photographic options:

Lens Rentals: US$70 per day, per lens

Renting a lens will offer you the ability to:

Carry less weight while travelling

The opportunity to experience and test out professional quality lenses while on safari

Use lenses beyond 300mm in length, a focal range that not many travellers ever get to experience.

Attain excellent images; photograph Mashatu’s wildlife with the optimum range of 400-500mm.

Use lenses that perform best in low light. A lot of animal activity occurs at dusk and this is when these lenses still work very well.

We supply beanbags and other support for the lenses when you rent them from PhotoMashatu. To see the world and take images like a professional photographer.

Nikon Sigma 150 – 600mm f5.6 – 6.3

Canon Sigma 150 – 600mm f5.6 – 6.3

Camera Body Canon 7D rental: US$40 per day

Photographic vehicle US$650 per day: maximum 4 people, but ideally suited to 2 people. Includes 1 optional tutor session per day & 1 x hide session subject to availability upon booking. Please note that the 1 optional tutor session per day & 1 x hide session (subject to availability upon booking) offered when booking the PhotoMashatu photographic vehicle, must coincide with the use of the PhotoMashatu photographic vehicle.

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