Come and experience the history, cultures, ecology and the animal and bird life of the best of southern Africa in February 2016. Take in the beauty of South Africa’s Kalahari wildlife, the sophistication of Cape Town and its wine country, the stunning landscapes of Namibia, and the wildlife of Botswana’s extraordinary Okavango Delta. Whether you have travelled with Commendable Travel before or not, this tour promises new experiences. The tour is organized and led by Adrian & Susan Doull, with many years’ experience of leading visitors to Southern Africa. For those only able to participate in part of these travels, we would happily arrange your travel requirements to join or leave any part of the trip. This program is still subject to change as we confirm the number of reservations, and we reserve the right to substitute comparable accommodation where necessary.
Please find the outline below and click on each Part for the detailed itineraries.
- Brief Outline of the Trip
- Brief Notes on the Countries
- Brief Comments about the Organisers
- Dates & Pricing
Participate in any or all of the Three Parts, though we recommend at least two.
Part 1 – South Africa includes the first night spent in Johannesburg, the vibrant business and financial capital of South Africa; you will recover from your international flights at the elegant Westcliff Hotel. The next morning we will fly to “Tswalu” in the Kalahari, the award-winning private game reserve owned by the Oppenheimer family, for an exceptional wildlife experience in the semi-desert. From Tswalu, we head to Cape Town, one of the loveliest cities in the world, for 3 nights in its stunningly beautiful surrounds, including the wine country.
Part 2 – Namibia From Cape Town we go to Walvis Bay in Namibia where we pick up our charter aircraft to fly to the amazing dunes at Sossusvlei where we spend two nights. From there we fly to the Skeleton Coast area, with its unique ecology, where we remain for three nights. Our final three days in Namibia are spent in the truly amazing landscapes in the far north west of the country at the border with Angola, and include contact with the extraordinary Himba people who survive in this stunningly desolate environment. Namibia is a big country, and travel by road is very time-consuming, so we will be flying in a charter aircraft between all of the destinations. This allows maximum observation of the dramatic landscapes.
Part 3 – Botswana We fly from the far west of Namibia to the centre of Botswana, into the lush and watery world of the Okavango Delta, the largest inland delta in the world. Gliding through channels in dug-out boats will be a great contrast with the arid landscapes of Namibia. We spend three nights at each of two exceptional camps, that are dedicated to sustainable wild life management, and return to Johannesburg in time for the return international flights.
An optional two extra nights’ visit to Africa’s greatest natural wonder, the Victoria Falls, is available
For further information and pricing, please contact Adrian at: firstname.lastname@example.org
SOUTH AFRICA has seldom been out of the headlines in our lifetimes. This complex country (it has 11 official languages) is a First, Second and Third World Country rolled into one. It has a mix of races, tribes, religions and cultures matched by few other countries. The arrival of the dominant European culture in 1652 was to set the stage for cultural conflict for the following 350 years, not all of it based on colour, however. The Boer/Brit struggles were as significant to the history as was the Zulu domination of large numbers of black tribes. The discovery of diamonds and then gold on a scale unknown in history was the catalyst for large scale white immigration, the beginnings of industrialization and the clash between British imperial avarice and the frontier independence of the Boers. The White/Black cultural clash was more notable primarily because the numbers involved were greater, and the cultural gap was wider. The absurd impracticability of the apartheid policy was a reflection of the desperation felt by the dominant white culture in attempting to find a solution that did not involve their domination by the culture of the majority black population. Extraordinarily, cometh the hour, cometh the men. The change in political control required not only a generosity of spirit, exemplified by Nelson Mandela, but a courageous repudiation of pseudo-religious dogma among the Afrikaner people by Frederick de Klerk. South Africa today faces enormous problems, but there is a spirit in the land that perhaps reflects that the people have been to the precipice, and have turned back from it to the broad uplands of hope. We want you to experience this ambiance, but above all we want you to understand this land better, so that your brief sojourn in it will in turn make this country, with all of its problems and challenges, better understood in the world.
NAMIBIA is an awesome land, arid, rough, desolate, but incredibly beautiful, in its vast, moon-like landscapes and endless horizons. It is a photographer’s dreamland, a land of contrasts and earthy colours. It is not the place for those who like busy beaches and the social whirlwind, but for those who are drawn to nature, stillness, the romance of the grandiose landscape, desert and expanses. Because of its barren coastline, Namibia was one of the last parts of Africa to be colonized by Europeans. The Namib – known as ‘The Living Desert’ – is a world of vast space, endless horizons, dramatic desert-scapes and jagged mountain heights, and the highest Sand Dunes in the World. The north-western reaches of the country are sparsely inhabited, lending the dramatic landscapes barely touched by man an ancient and profound sense of eternity. Unless time is not of the essence, these can best be explored with charter aircraft, which allow a greater appreciation of the geological and meteorological wonders. The jaw-dropping landscapes of Kaokoland and Damaraland will never be forgotten, and there has never been a visitor unimpressed by the Skeleton Coast.
BOTSWANA is undoubtedly the most successful of the great number of African countries that attained their independence from colonial rule in the 1950s and 1960s. This is most likely due to a relatively homogenous and small population, a far-seeing and able first President, Sir Seretse Khama, and considerable mineral wealth, especially diamonds. Today, it is the largest gem diamond producer in the world. An arid land, originally home to the hunter/gatherer Koi and San peoples (sometimes known as Bushmen), who were overwhelmed by both white men from the south and black men from the north, it is landlocked and surrounded by Namibia on the west, Zimbabwe in the north, and South Africa in the east and south. It has a remarkable and unique exception to the general aridity – the largest inland Delta in the world – the Okavango. Created a British Protectorate in 1885 at the initiation of Cecil Rhodes, the people lobbied hard and successfully in London to avoid becoming part of the territory under the control of Rhodes’ British South Africa Company. Botswana has been independent since 1966.
South Africa – Starts 9 February in Johannesburg; Ends 17 February in Cape Town
Namibia – Starts 17 February in Windhoek; Ends 25 February in Windhoek
Botswana – Starts 26 February in Maun, Botswana; Ends 3 March in Johannesburg
South Africa – Rand 84,032 per person (currently US$ 6,450, subject to exchange rate)
- This includes, all accommodation for 8 nights, first night dinner in Johannesburg, all meals and game drives at the Tswalu Reserve, private aircraft travel to and from Tswalu, group ground transportation in Cape Town and Franchhoek.
- NOT included are lunches and dinners in Cape Town and Franchhoek, tips, drinks, any activities not mentioned.
Namibia – Namibian Dollars 74,561 per person (currently US$ 5,723, subject to exchange rate)
- This includes all accommodation for 9 nights, all meals and excursions at the three lodges involved and at Windhoek, economy commercial air fare from Cape Town to Windhoek, private aircraft flights between Windhoek and to all of the lodges, returning to Windhoek, all ground transportation.
- NOT included are tips, drinks, any activities not mentioned.
Botswana – US$ 4,750 per person
- This includes all accommodation for 6 nights, all meals, game drives, and excursions at the lodges involved.
- NOT included are tips, drinks, any activities not mentioned.