15 days comprehensive camper trip from Johannesburg ER 403

Description

To be able to experience beautiful highlights of South Africa in your own camper van will be a treat! All you need to do is to book your suitable camper van via us and then your holiday can start. We will make sure your camp sites will make you feel you are one with nature. After arrival in Johannesburg think of exploring the stunning Panorama Route, meet the wild life in the Kruger National Park, experience Swaziland, admire the Drakensberg Mountains, enjoy the tropical Elephant coast and these are just a few highlights of many.

 

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15 days comprehensive camper trip from Johannesburg ER 403

Itinerary:

Day 1 Witbank/Barhambay Lodge/Camping 1 night.

Distance: approx. 145 km.

Welcome in South Africa. You can collect your camper van at the camper depot in Johannesburg between 8 and 9 in the morning. After the paper work has been done and you received all your instructions, you are ready to drive to your first destination which will be the Barhambay Lodge in Witbank.

You are driving in the Mpumalanga province where the plateaus of the highveld begin their spectacular tumble onto the lowveld plains and the dramatic Drakensberg Escarpment. You won't see it yet in the beginning of the trip as it will be quite industrialized but stay patient.

Witbank is situated in the cultural heartland of Mpumalanga and it boasts plenty of recreation to suit all preferences. The area is bustling with fantastic coffee shops, inviting farm stalls and fascinating cultural villages selling arts and crafts. Witbank is home to the well known Witbank Dam. This dam is known as the largest municipal dam in the southern hemisphere and boasts a catchment area of more than 3 540 square kilometres! At the foot of this dam you find the Barhambay Lodge where you can park your camper van for the night.

If you feel energized you can enjoy numerous exciting water sports such as skiing, windsurfing and fishing. Or rather relax and watch the vibrant bird life in the area or enjoy a hike on one of the many beautiful hiking trails. You can sip on refreshing cocktails in the jacuzzi, jump in the swimming pool or even sail down the waters and do some game viewing.

Day 2 Sabie/Merry Pebbles Resort/Camping 1 night.

Distance: approx. 210 km.

This region is the ancestral home of the Southern Ndebele, famous for their love of colourful and symbolic decoration. Exquisite examples of geometrically patterned homes and intricate beadwork on women's costumes can be seen at the Botshabelo Mission near Fort Merensky, 13 km north of Middelburg.

Look out for the Drakensberg Escarpment which marks the point where the highveld plunges down over 1000 m, before spilling out onto the eastern lowveld. This is one of South Africa's most scenic areas, marked by dramatic cliffs and stunning views. On your way to Sabie on the edge of the escarpment are the two little railway towns of Waterval Boven and Waterval Onder where you can enjoy your first of many waterfalls. Think of visiting the Sudwala Caves where a guide will take you 600 m inside and 150 m below the earth to admire nature's wonders.

Experience the picturesque beauty of nature in and around Sabie, a small country town nestled in the majestic Drakensberg escarpment mountains where you will be staying tonight. Sabie is located 1050 m above sea level and considered a malaria free area.

Tonight you will park your holiday home in the Merry Pebbles Resort, a family resort on the banks of the Sabie River, on the outskirts of town. They offer lots of facilities such as a restaurant, convenience shop, heated and cold water pools, water slides, tennis court, entertainment hall, fishing, mountain bike and hiking trails. The little town is only 2 km away in case you need some shopping for the coming days.

The numerous (short) hiking trails (Forest Falls Nature Walk or Secretary Bird Walk) around Sabie cater for everyone, whether you are a bird watcher, a fauna and flora enthusiast, or merely want to experience the delight of relaxing within sight of sparkling waterfalls or meandering streams. This is waterfall country and numerous short drives lead from the town to picnic sites and view sites such as Sabie Falls, Horseshoe Falls, Lone Creek Falls, Bridal Veil Falls and MacMac Falls. Please know that they are best to be visited before midday because of the sun.

Day 3 Blyde River Canyon/Forever Blydepoort/Camping 1 night.

Distance: approx. 100 km.

Perhaps you enjoyed a delicious picnic breakfast overlooking an impressive waterfall? Today you are going to experience true nature's beauty. The road northwards from Sabie via Graskop to the Blyde River Canyon should be taken at a leisurely pace so that the breathtaking views can be enjoyed properly.

If you want a glimpse of the raw, untainted beauty of Africa, Pinnacle Rock is definitely the place to visit. Located 6 km north of Graskop, this majestic pillar is set amongst best of pristine wilderness; lush greenery, flowing rivers and picturesque view of the stunning surrounds.  Or with its magnificent views, canyons, rock formations and waterfalls, God's Window and Jock's View are truly breathtaking scenic splendours for you to visit. Another impressive nature's creation is the Bourke's Luck Potholes. This natural water feature marks the beginning of the Blyde River Canyon.

Try to visit  the historic village of Pilgrim's Rest which uniqueness is vividly evident in its museums and historic sites. It was declared a National Monument in 1986 as a living memory of the early gold rush days in South Africa during the late 1800s, beginning 1900s.

You will be staying in the Forever Blydepoort Resort Forever which has commanding views of the Blyde River Canyon, the third largest canyon in the world and one of South Africa's scenic wonders. Its scenery is unsurpassed, its vegetation both varied and lush and the rich selection of birdlife includes a breeding colony of the rare bald ibis, which makes it the perfect location for nature lovers and adventure seekers!

The Resort offers 30 spacious shaded caravan sites equipped with power supply and serviced by two neat ablution facilities. There are lots of facilities including a convenience store, filling station and not forgetting a famous restaurant where you can relax and enjoy the unforgettable view of the Three Rondavels, an outlook that is overwhelmingly beautiful and deserves more than a moment's respite.

Day 4 Krugerpark/Satara Rest camp/Camping 1 night.

Distance: approx. 100 km.

Are you ready for the real African experience! The world renowned Kruger National Park offers a wildlife experience that ranks with the best in Africa and with its excellent infrastructure it will make everything readily accessible. The speed limit of 40 kph should never be exceeded as not only for the fines but also gamespotting is seldom successful when travelling above this speed.

It is unwise to cover large areas in a short time, it can be very rewarding simply sitting quietly at a water hole rather than driving around in the hot sun. The best game viewing is in the morning until around 10 am or in the late afternoon.

Rustic and communal, the Satara Rest camp borrows much of its ambience from the rugged and untamed bush in which it is located. The flat plains of the camp are scattered with large Marula and Knobthorn trees, and ambient nights are set to the restless noises of fruit bats, cicadas and crickets being met by owl calls and the roar of the lion. Between this all you will park your home and embrace your surroundings. This camp is the third biggest one in the park and has a.o. a grocery store, restaurant, filling station, laundry facilities and a swimming pool.

The camp has a firm reputation for being one of the best spots in the world for viewing large cats. Attracted by the herds of antelope that come to graze here on the fertile land of the plains, lion, leopard and cheetah are often spotted stalking their prey nearby the camp, a spectacular sight that you're unlikely to forget. Expert guides and trackers are on-hand to take you on game drives and walks, where you can spot the Big Five, learn about the intricacies of bushveld ecology and come to grips with nature at her finest..

Day 5 Kruger National Park/Skukuza Rest camp/Camping 1 night.

Distance: approx. 95 km.

Perhaps you have experienced an early morning game drive or bush walk with a professional guide before heading towards your next rest camp. Enjoy the ride through the beautiful African nature and think of having a leisurely picnic at a water hole in the heat of the day.

The Skukuza rest camp is situated on the southern banks of the Sabie River. Well foliaged, with lofty trees along the river's edge, you can expect a diverse amount of animals and plants. This is the main camp of the Kruger Park with facilities similar to a small town. It offers adventure in the form of guided bush walks and game drives, all under the supervision of well informed and keen professional field guides. After a long special day you can cool off in one of their swimming pools and if you are a golf fan you can even play a bit.

Dag 6 Kruger National Park/Berg-en-Dal Rest camp/Camping 1 night.

Distance: approx. 170 km.

Today you have a longer trip ahead of you so start early and make the most of it. Most animals are found throughout the park, but the frequency of sightings is determined by the topography and vegetation.

Located in the midst of striking prehistoric settlements on the Matjulu Spruit, Berg-en-Dal camp has been built with care and preservation for the surrounding area, original San rock paintings still clearly visible from the hill shelters along the Bushman trail. The camp is flanked on the north and south by dry riverbeds and a dam, respectively, and trees alongside both, adding to the authentic wildlife ambience enjoyed by guests. Its extensive, well-fenced grounds are among the few places where one can walk in the park and enjoy the flora and fauna at close quarters.

This camp has also all the facilities you need and you can just enjoy another night under the African sky with the animals singing to you.

Day 7 Swaziland/Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary/Camping 1 night.

Distance: approx. 150 km.

Perhaps tough to say goodbye to so much beauty but be assured that you will experience lots more. Have your passport ready as today you will experience another African country namely the Kingdom of Swaziland. You can leave the Kruger Park via the Malelane border post and drive towards the Jeppe's Reef border.

Swaziland is a fascinating country with its laid-back ambience, friendly people and relative lack of racial animosities. Small as it may be, Swaziland is an exciting destination with its art and craft outlets and traditional markets and wildlife reserves. Visit the Matsamo Cultural village where you get to live just like the traditional Swazi in a custom-built 'hive'. This is a traditional Swazi village where the colourful Matsamo people tend their cattle, cultivate their crops and produce beautiful crafts. The drive to Piggs Peak is one of the most scenic in the country. Check out the Sibebe Rock, Ngwena Glass village, where each item is handmade from 100% recycled glass and/or visit a vibrant local Swazi market on your way to the beautiful Ezulwini Valley where you will stay the night in the Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary..

At Mlilwane Game Reserve tame birds and animals are free to come and go and wander through the camp ground. This sanctuary is a tranquil retreat and offers horse and bike trails, gamedrives, walks and bird viewing. Or open your lungs by climbing to the top of a mountain and looking out at infinity or swim in the mountain springs.

The Mlilwane Rest Camp is found in the southern corner of the reserve, in the midst of a well matured rehabilitated area. Tall indigenous trees, all grown from seed, now tower over the camp overlooking an artificially created wetland system, which is home to hippopotamus, crocodile and a variety of water birds including infrequent visiting fish eagles.

The camp is unfenced, yet relatively safe as only smaller species of wildlife occur in the Sanctuary. The camp is tranquil and relaxing with a continual stream of animals such as impala, warthog and ostrich too, walking between the facilities quietly tolerant of human presence.

Day 8 Hluhluwe/Bushbaby Lodge/Camping 1 night.

Distance: approx. 250 km.

Back to South Africa and this time to Zululand a place of unspoilt beauty characterised by a pristine coastline, abundant forests, rolling green hills and zig zagging rivers. It is a world of rich natural diversity and enormous social contrasts, a place where modern lifestyles thrive adjacent to a culture steeped in traditions.

Tonight you will be staying at the Bushbaby Lodge in Hluhluwe in the heart of Elephant Coast. In a picturesque tropical garden under the shade of enormous indigenous trees with South African hospitality at its best. Treat yourself to traditional home cooking, or make use of the equipped communal kitchen and cater for  yourself. Enjoy leisurely walks while viewing the rich bird live and game of the area. This is a malaria area so please take precaution.

They are only 20 minutes away from the Hluhluwe/Umfolozi Game Reserve which cannot be missed! As one of South Africa's most celebrated game parks, the Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Park is renowned for its variety of animal and bird life, its wide-ranging photography, and an extremely rich diversity of tree and plant communities. The game reserve offers visitors activities from self guided walks, auto-trails, game drives as well as picnic sites. Viewing hides overlook pans and waterholes enabling visitors to see animals at close range. 

Day 9 iSimangaliso Wetland Park/Cape Vidal/Camping 1 night.

Distance: approx. 50 km.

Today you only have a short drive so make the most of the extra time you have to explore the beautiful surroundings. Don't forget to buy your groceries and water for the night in St. Lucia village as there are no shops at your next peaceful stop over in Cape Vidal.

Cape Vidal is a magnificent coastal resort set in a sheltered coastal bay in the Greater St Lucia/iSimangaliso Wetland Park, with shallow pools and rock ledges for snorkelling, fishing, unspoiled beaches for walking and self-guided trails around the fascinating wetlands, in the rich coastal forest and on the shores of Lake Bhangazi. This iSimangaliso Wetland Park offers a mind-blowing range of natural systems, ranging from dune, swamp and coastal forests to rocky and sandy shores, coral reefs and submarine canyons, mangroves, savanna grassland, thickets, woodlands, and the largest protected wetland in southern Africa.

On the same day you could see hippos, crocodiles, buffalo, elephants, whales on their northerly migration to Mozambique to calve, loggerhead and leatherback turtles in summer as they come onto the beaches to lay their eggs, dolphins, and a variety of water, forest or grassland birds. In other words you will be spoilt by this unique piece of paradise and we trust you will indulge every moment.

Notes: Gate times: Summer (01 October - 31 March) 05:00 - 19:00. Winter (01 April - 30 September) 06:00 - 18:00.

Day 10 Salt Rock/Salt Rock Camp Ground/Camping 1 night.

Distance: approx. 220 km.

Enjoy peace and quietness before you drive via the beautiful Dolphin Coast region with numerous resorts nestled along the coast. It is the frequent sighting of Bottlenose dolphins playing in the Indian ocean waves that has resulted this area being called "The Dolphin Coast". 

The name Salt Rock originates from King Shaka's days when his handmaidens used to collect dried salt off the rocks at low tide. Near the main beach complete with lifeguards is also a large safe tidal pool. The beach also provides some good fishing spots and there are beautiful reefs off-shore which will give divers hours of enjoyment. If you love playing golf you have plenty opportunity in these stunning surroundings. Also a need for proper shopping can be fulfilled in the huge Gateway Mall close by.

Tonight you will stay at the Salt Rock Resort which is nestled amongst tropical palms on the golden shores of the warm and sparkling Indian Ocean. You will have all the modern facilities and can enjoy sundowners at the elevated sun terrace or for daily dolphin viewing and seasonal whale watching. Another beautiful day in Africa ....

Day 11/12 Winterton/Dragon's Peak Resort/Camping 2 nights.

Distance: approx. 215 km.

After perhaps a quick dive in the rock tidal pool it is time to hit the road again and leave the coast for the impressive Drakensbergen mountains. Like to make an interesting stop think of visiting the Natal Sharks Board in Umhlanga Rocks. They are not only involved in preventing shark attacks but also plays a huge role in research on sharks, and supports and promotes the conservation of sharks.

Easiest is to take the highway towards Pietermaritzburg and once you passed it the traffic will become less and you can start enjoying the views of the scenic Kwa-Zulu Natal. The Northern and Central Drakensberg area has some of the most beautiful scenery that can be imagined.

You will be welcomed for two nights at the Dragon Peaks Mountain Resort, a family owned, 1000 acre wilderness estate set in the shadow of Cathkin Peak and Champagne Castle, part of the rugged Drakensberg mountains. The resort retains its country charm and unspoilt views of the majestic Drakensberg mountains, bordering the prestigeous Drakensberg Ukhahlamba World Heritage Site, renowned for both its geographic and cultural significance.

Ideal for camping they have grass, slab and shade sites to suit every taste and lots of modern facilities. The on-site shop has every essential for casual catering, while their restaurant provides three daily meals or take-out snacks as required. You won't be bored as there are lots of activities you can do. Think of lounging on a wooden raft, canoe or kayak on their dam or jump in the swimming pool. Or be more adventurous and book yourself a mind blowing helicopter flight, enjoy abseiling, jump on a horse and let him guide you or try to cycle up a mountain.

If you rather hike there are several trails which wind around the estate linking all of the main natural features of interest. They have an ancient seven hundred year old Yellowwood, pristine indigenous forests and several refreshing rock pools to swim in during the summer months. Visit the Giant's Castle Nature Reserve which is known for its magnificent San rock art, fabulous hiking and invigorating climate. This nature reserve is an historic place, and home to majestic Eland and noble Bearded Vulture.

In other words just enjoy the stunning scenery and breath in this fresh air!

Day 13 Royal Natal National Park/Mahai Camp/Camping 1 night.

Distance: approx. 25 km.

Are you ready for your next spectacular night in the majestic Drakensbergen mountains? Tonight you will park your home at the Mahai Camp in the stunning Royal Natal National Park.

This park lies in the northern section of the Drakensbergen, in the green bowl of the famous Amphitheatre and with spectacular views of the tumbling Tugela Falls. Nestled among yellow wood forests and Protea savannah where, after a fierce summer thunderstorm, the rumble of the Thukela River can be heard below, you will be exposed to some of the most awe-inspiring mountain landscapes and hiking to be experienced in this area of flawless natural beauty.

Your home for tonight is a beautifully situated camp site nestled along the Mahai river with magnificent mountains forming the backdrop. Half the sites have electric plug points and barbecue stands, and the non-electrified section share barbecue facilities.All sites have shared coldwater taps. Mahai campsite is serviced by modern ablution blocks with hot baths and showers, flush toilets, laundry machines and dishwashing facilities.

Young boys selling local handicrafts near parks and on the road sides are a common site in the Drakensbergen. Most of these articles are made from Gashu, the weaving grass. This art form is passed from mother to daughter and the products made out of this make a beautiful present back home.

Gate times: Summer (01 October - 31 March) 05:00 - 19:00. Winter (01 April - 30 September) 06:00 - 18:00.

Day 14 Vereeniging/Malonjeni Game Farm/Camping 1 night.

Distance: approx. 320 km.

Have an early morning walk before heading back to the big city. Hopefully you can sqeeze in a picnic along the way and slowely say goodbye to the magical mountains. Still one day to enjoy this fasinating country with all its different cultures, flora and fauna.

Tonight you will stay at the Malonjeni Game Farm where small town hospitality with Africa on your doorstep and a lovely quiet farm atmosphere all rolled into one. The 270 hectare guest farm is home to game such as Black Wildebeest, Red Hartebeest, Springbuck, Blesbuck, Zebra and Africa's largest antelope - the Eland. Malonjeni has two caravan camps to cater for the needs of all campers. The main camp with all the modern facilities and the more rugged bush camp. They offer a fun filled tractor & trailer game drive. The more adventurous can go on a game walk, climb the "Koppie", visit the old African Ruins on the other side of the "Koppie" and there is an interesting Grave Yard to visit.

Day 15 Johannesburg/Camper depot

Today is the day you have to say goodbye to your holiday home. Please deliver your camper van before16.00 pm at the camper depot in Johannesburg. We hope you had a fantastic holiday and hope to see you again. Have a safe flight.

If you haven't booked a flight yet, please click here: flights
If you need a travel and cancellation insurance, please click here: travel insurance
If you need advice or further information, please click here: contact

You can choose your own camper directly via www.camperspecialist.co.za or alternatively contact us via info@zuidafrikaspecialist.nl.

Duration:

15 Days, 14 nights

Departure:

Daily or based on availability

Accommodation:

Camping sites with electricity or otherwise

Care:

Based on self-catering

Price:

Per person based on double occupancy

Starting point:

Johannesburg

Endpoint:

Johannesburg

Malaria area:

Yes

Age:

All ages

Trip characteristics:

Adventurous and active

Countries:

South Africa and Swaziland

Highlights:

Kruger National Park, Swaziland, Panorama Route, Elephant Coast and the Drakensberg Mountains

Visa required:

No

Including:
-
Reserved camping sites
(according to description or equivalent)
- Road map

Excluding:
-
Flights
- Travel and cancellation insurance
- Camper hire: book directly via www.camperspecialist.co.za
- Optional activities
- Cross-border fees, gratuities and entrance fees