• Sydney Australia - credit Jackie Appleton
    Sydney Australia - credit Jackie Appleton

Why you should consider Hwange National Park for your Safari

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Posted by:

Vicki Tester

 

There are very good reasons to consider Hwange National Park, in Zimbabwe, for your safari destination and the key ones are as follow:

  • Hwange is close to Victoria Falls which is easy enough to reach by a number of airlines. The airport there is becoming a bigger International destination which will make it even easier to fly in to the region.
  • Hwange has about 43,000 visitors per year which gives a density of 3 people per KM2 per year. This compares with the Serengeti density of 23 people per km2 per year, Kruger at 85 and Masai Mara at 912.
  • It is home to about 46,000 elephants and during the dry season it is not unusual to see herds of hundreds at waterholes. None of the other Parks can boast such large numbers of elephant. In fact there are more elephants than visitors.
  • It has the some of the densest numbers of sable antelope, cheetah, wild dog and lion in Zimbabwe
  • Your guides here serve an apprenticeship of 5 to 10 years and their professionalism is considered amongst the best in Africa. They will take you on walking safaris within the Park and teach you about all that you see, including tracks, flora and fauna. This will enhance your African experience immensely.
  • Hwange Park lodges and camps are small and personal. On average 8 rooms serving 16 clients

 

Elephants

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

Africa

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

Elephants

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

If you would like more information about a tailor made safari to Hwange and Victoria Falls or Safaris in South Africa then please contact us on – 01323 446550 or email info@experienceholidays.co.uk

Mozambique as a Family Destination

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Posted by:

Vicki Tester

 

One of our favourite lodges on the coast of Mozambique has decided to streamline its cost base and make going there better than ever. Nuarro Lodge has just offered a 5 night stay for families at US$ 125-00 per person per night. This includes the following: Vehicle transfers to and from Nampula Airport/ Nacala Airport / Ilha De Mocambique, accommodation in the chalets with three meals, coffee & tea, snacks, unlimited shore diving for advanced diver buddies, unguided snorkelling, kayaking, mountain bikes and one massage per booking.

indaba and moz Mozambique

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

The fact that it is in a wonderful location with pristine seas to explore and truly idyllic beaches makes this a wonderful family get away. Visit their website www.nuarro.com to see what you could be doing! 

One of things that has put off clients going to Mozambique is the difficulty of getting there. The good news is that the Government of the country is opening up the country by asking for tenders for flights in and around the country. Hopefully this will make it easier for future travellers to this beautiful country.

indaba and mozambique

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

indaba and mozambique

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

Cape Town and Garden Route

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Posted by:

Vicki Tester

 

This itinerary provides a perfect ‘first time visit’ to South Africa, combining the world class city of Cape Town with the winelands, garden route, coast and wildlife.

Summary

Cape Town and Garden Route

 

This itinerary provides a perfect ‘first time visit’ to South Africa, combining a world class city with the winelands, garden route, coast and wildlife.

Day: 1 Cape Town

Day 4: Hermanus

Day 5: Franschhoek

Day 7: Robertson Valley

Day 9: Oudtshoorn

Day 11: Plettenberg Bay

Day 14: Jefferie’s Bay

Day 16: Safari

Day 19: Port Elizabeth

South Africa - Cape Town

Picture courtesy of Angie Watson

 

Description

Description

 

South Africa is a magnificently diverse country with stunning scenery, incredible wildlife, a fascinating history, interesting people, enviable vinyards and a great food scene.  Couple with this the fact that as it’s located due south of the UK, there is minimal time difference and no jet lag, and South Africa makes for a fantastic holiday destination.

This itinerary provides a perfect ‘first time visit’ to South Africa, combining a world class city with the winelands, garden route, coast and wildlife.

Day 1: Cape Town

Arguably one of the world’s most beautiful settings with the advantage of Table Mountain as a backdrop – Cape Town has plenty to offer. Visit the Kirstenbosch Gardens, take a cable car to the summit of Table Mountain for panoramic views. Visit also Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for so many years – or drive the Cape Peninsula.

Three nights Cape Town

Day 4: Hermanus

Leave the city behind and head to the coast. Hermanus is famous as a destination for whale watching. The bay here provides a winter home to huge numbers of these majestic mammals and can often be seen from the shore, as well as from a cruise. Nearby Gansbaai is a key departure point for shark cage diving.

One night Hermanus

Day 5: Franschhoek

Head inland to the Winelands, through the scenic Franshhoek Pass – your destination is the lovely little town of Franschhoek – a gourmet’s paradise in idyllic surroundings. Rugged mountains surround this little oasis tucked away and waiting to be discovered. Take the wine tram to tour the vineyards surrounding the town.

Two nights Franschhoek

Day 7: Robertson Valley

Continuing east via the Franschhoek Pass to Worcester and into the Robertson Valley – here you find further vineyards, rugged craggy mountain scenery and pretty little towns.

One night Robertson Valley

Day 9: Oudtshoorn

The next stop takes you along the spectacular route 62, passing to the northern side of the mountain range, where the climate becomes arid and dry. Vineyards still nestle in fertile hollows – Calizdorf is particularly famous for its port wine. Take time to explore the Swartberg Pass, Prince Albert and the Cango Caves. This area is also famous for its Ostrich farming – thousands of these lanky and unwieldy flightless birds as far as the eye can see.

Two nights Oudtshoorn

Day 11: Plettenberg Bay

A choice of routes today, crossing the Outeniqua Mountains, and descending again to the coast. This – technically – is the Garden Route. Explore the Tsitsikamma National Park, Natures Valley, Storms River Mouth, and the coastal towns of Plettenberg Bay and Knysna.

Three nights Plettenberg Bay

Day 14: Jeffrey’s Bay

Continue east to the seaside town of Jeffrey’s Bay. Relax and unwind in this laidback surfer town, which is also home to a number of factory stores such as Quiksilver and Billabong.

Two nights Jeffery’s Bay

 Day 16: Safari

Today head to a private game reserve on the Eastern Cape, providing a chance to see some of the incredible wildlife that South Africa has to offer. Many of the reserves are home to all of the Big Five animals, plus plenty of others besides. There are options to suit most budgets and preferences.

Three nights Safari

Day 19: Port Elizabeth

Drive to Port Elizabeth for the onward or homeward journey.

There are plenty of possible extensions to add to this itinerary – consider Kwa Zulu Natal and the Drakensburg Mountains, Swaziland and the Indian Ocean coast, Kruger National Park, or perhaps take a trip up to Victoria Falls – the possibilities are almost endless.

 

Cape Peninsula

Picture courtesy of Angie Watson

Cape Town - Elephants

Picture courtesy of Angie Watson

Cape Town - Safari vehicle

Picture courtesy of Angie Watson

White Lions pumba

Picture courtesy of Angie Watson

Cape Town - Winelands

Picture courtesy of Angie Watson

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Little Gems

Little Gems

 

Seeing the rare white lion at Pumba Private Game Reserve on the Eastern Cape provides a unique and exciting wildlife experience.

Client Feedback

Client Feedback

 

I suspect your general view is no news is good news from your travellers.  You are correct! But I just wanted to reassure you of that.  And to add that we are having the most wonderful time.

Your advice and preparation have been seamless, your choices often spectacular. This as I sit on the balcony of our penthouse suite overlooking Jeffrey’s bay.

Thank you.

We are compiling a sort of diary that you may be interested in seeing later.

 In the meantime forgive me if I go now.

Paradise awaits you see!

 

Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe and Zambia

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Posted by:

Vicki Tester

 

This year has been a good one for rains in Southern Africa (well for most places) which is good news for farmers and the wildlife. The abundance of rain has seen the rivers well up which in turn has led to the amount of water flowing over the Victoria Falls being spectacular. There is nothing quite as awe inspiring as seeing and feeling the thunder of the Falls. You are also guaranteed to receive a good soaking from the spray – which can be seen from miles away.

Victoria Falls

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

This time of year is often portrayed as being one to avoid coming to this part of the world, but there are very good reasons to consider it. Yes, the game viewing will be more difficult as the wildlife has dispersed and the vegetation will be at its highest but this is the time that many animals have their young and the birds are in courting and nesting mode.

There is also the advantage of boat safaris in places such as South Luangwa and the flood in to the Okavango should be high allowing you the choices of travel in this unique environment.

It is all about planning – and taking advantage of the good rates for these areas at this time of year.

Give us a call or email to plan your trip to this amazing area on Tel: 01323 446550 – Email: info@experienceholidays.co.uk

Victoria Falls

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

Victoria Falls

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

Botswana – Home of the uncrowded safari

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Posted by:

Vicki Tester

 

This year Botswana celebrated 50 years of independence and it does stand out as a wonderful safe destination in Africa. The country has deliberately set out to protect its wildlife resources by encouraging low volume, high market tourism. This policy has worked well for the flora and fauna, the GDP, provided quality jobs and delivered amazing tourist experiences.

With so many unique places to visit, it is no wonder that Botswana is high on the list of places to visit for those that love to go on safari. The huge Okavango Delta provides an experience second to none and the desert areas such as Central Kalahari Game Reserve and Nxai PanNational Park ensure a completely different type of wildlife encounter.

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

 

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

However if you want to go and do not want to pay top dollar then think about heading there in the “Green Season”. This is the time that the rains come (if they do!), some lodges close for repair but others offer special prices for their clients. But why go when you could encounter rain?

It is wonderful to see how the dry semi desert, and even the desert, bursts in to colour. The trees come back in to leaf, the grass grows and the river beds start flowing with water. Birds migrate in from all parts of Africa and quickly start picking their nesting sites and break out their mating plumage.

Most of the plains antelope time the birth of their young to coincide with the time of plenty and more vegetation to hide their babies in. The Delta rises, fish spawn, wading birds are plentiful and nests are full. Being out in a mokoro adds a frisson of excitement to your adventure.

 

It is seeing Botswana in a different light. Please call to discuss your options and seek professional advice into your own bespoke, tailor made safari – Tel: 01323 446550 or email info@experienceholidays.co.uk 

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

 

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

South Africa Highlights

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A melting pot of colour, creed and culture and a variety of scenery to rival any country in the world – beaches, mountains, flora and wildlife big and small.  South Africa has it all. South Africa is closer than you think, and as you will fly due south, there is virtually no jet lag. 

Summary

South Africa Highlights

Due south of the UK and 10 to 12 hours flying time away, a flight to South Africa does not leave you jet-lagged and travel weary.  The minimal time difference allows the traveller to board the aircraft in London in the evening, and arrive at the destination the following morning with no tiresome time-change.  Visit Cape Town and the Cape Peninsular with its Mediterranean climate, the Winelands, the Little Karoo and the famous Garden Route.  Head towards KwaZulu Natal, the Southern Drakensberg, the Zulu Battlefields and the Hluhluwe-St Lucia Wetlands.  Further then to Mpumalanga and the mighty Kruger Park, arguably the best big game viewing in the world with small intimate lodge accommodation.

Day 1: Cape Town
Day 4: Franschhoek
Day 5: Robertson Valley
Day 6: Oudtshoorn
Day 8: Plettenberg Bay
Day 11: Jeffrey’s Bay
Day 12: Southern Drakensbergs
Day 14: Dullstrom
Day 15: Kruger National Park
Day 17: Hazyview
Day 19: Depart Johannesburg

Description

Description

A melting pot of colour, creed and culture and a variety of scenery to rival any country in the world – beaches, mountains, flora and wildlife big and small.  South Africa has it all.  Due south of the UK and 10 to 12 hours flying time away, a flight to South Africa does not leave you jet-lagged and travel weary.  The minimal time difference allows the traveller to board his aircraft in London in the evening, and arrive at the destination the following morning with no tiresome time-change.  Visit Cape Town and the Cape Peninsular with its Mediterranean climate, the Winelands, the Little Karoo and the famous Garden Route.  Head towards KwaZulu Natal, the Southern Drakensberg, the Zulu Battlefields and the Hluhluwe-St Lucia Wetlands.  Further then to Mpumalanga and the mighty Kruger Park, arguably the best big game viewing in the world with small intimate lodge accommodation. 

Day 1: Cape Town
Fly to Cape Town, arguably one of the world’s most beautiful settings with the advantage of Table Mountain as a backdrop. A cable car takes you to the summit of Table Mountain for panoramic views. Visit Robben Island or drive the Cape Peninsular, taking in a visit to the penguins at Boulders Beach. Visit the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront plus the Maritime Museum and Two Oceans Aquarium. Explore the Kirstenbosch Gardens with its fine display of fynbos – protea.
Three nights Cape Town

Day 4: Franschhoek
Head to the Winelands and the town of Franschhoek – a gourmet’s paradise in idyllic surroundings of fertile valleys surrounded by rugged mountain. Visit a vineyard and learn about this ever expanding industry – and perhaps sample some of their wares.
One or two nights Franschoek

Day 5: Robertson Valley
Continuing east via the Franschhoek Pass to Worcester and into the Robertson Valley. Here you find further vineyards, rugged craggy mountain scenery and pretty little towns. The Huguenot influence here ensures that you will dine well. 
One or two nights Robertson Valley

Depending on the time available, you may consider a side trip to Hermanus on the coast and famous for its whale watching.

Day 6: Oudtshoorn
Pass to the northern side of the mountain range. Vineyards still nestle in fertile hollows – Calizdorf is particularly famous for its port wine. Explore the Swartberg Pass, Prince Albert and the Cango Caves. This area is also famous for its ostrich farms who welcome visitors and the chance to explain ostrich farming past and present.
Two nights Oudtshoorn

Day 8: Plettenberg Bay
Cross the Outeniqua Mountains, and descend to the coast. This – technically – is the Garden Route – the area between George and Plettenberg Bay and has large areas of fynbos to view. Explore the Tsitsikamma National Park, Natures Valley, Storms River Mouth, and the coastal towns of Plettenberg Bay and Knysna. A mixture of adventurous activities, beautiful scenery and flora and fauna.
3 nights Plettenberg Bay

Day 11: Jeffrey’s Bay
Continue east to the seaside town of Jeffrey’s Bay. Relax and unwind for a night at your beachside location, before the next stage of your adventure.
One night Jeffrey’s Bay

Day 12: Southern Drakensbergs
Fly from Port Elizabeth to Durban. Drive north towards the Southern Drakensberg Mountains. The scenery to be found here is reminiscent of Scotland on a grand scale. Wonderful walks take you to some of the best views in South Africa.
Two nights Southern Drakenbergs

You may choose here to add in a few extra days in the Zulu Battlefields.

Day 14: Dullstrom
North into Mpumalanga (formerly Eastern Transvaal) en route to the Kruger National Park.
One night Dullstrom

Day 15: Kruger National Park
Drive to the Kruger today. Choose from tented bush camps to luxury 5* lodges, all with game drives in 4WD vehicles accompanied by an armed ranger and tracker. See the ‘Big Five’ – lion, leopard, buffalo, rhino and elephant. Enjoy dinner by the ‘boma’ campfire.
Two nights Kruger

Day 17: Hazyview
Leave the Kruger for the Northern Drakensberg. From here, drive the Panorama Route. Blyde River Canyon – a gorge 20 miles in length hewn from the face of the escarpment. God’s Window gives staggering views of the canyon and Bourke’s Luck Potholes.
Two nights Hazyview

Day 19: Depart Johannesburg
Drive or fly back to Johannesburg, and fly home from there, or add an optional extension.

Optional Extensions:

  • Sun City South Africa’s Las Vegas is easily accessible by road or air from Johannesburg. A very popular fun and leisure resort it is complete with casino, man made-lake with waves and beaches; a wide range of sports facilities and two 18-hole golf courses designed by Gary Player.
  • Victoria Falls Fly from Johannesburg (and return) to the site of the world famous gorges and cataracts of the Zambesi River.
  • The Blue Train Pretoria/Johannesburg to Cape Town or vice versa with overnight sleeping berth, drinks and all meals included.
  • Rovos Rail Pretoria/Johannesburg to Cape Town or vice versa with 2 nights sleeping accommodation, sightseeing tours at stops en route, drinks and all meals included.

We look forward to hearing from you and assisting you with your tailor made South Africa holiday.

All photographs by kind permission of South Africa Tourism

SAT Addo elephants      SAT Capetown

 

SAT Knysna      SAT Sabie River

Little Gems

Little Gems

Safari, safari, safari – a wonderful way to spend a few days at the end of a lovely holiday.  If time is not on your side and you decide that your bespoke South Africa holiday should concentrate on the Garden Route only, consider the private game reserve of Pumba in the Eastern Cape as your safari element.  With their resident white lion, this also provides a unique opportunity to see these rare mammals in their natural environment.

What our clients say

Client Feedback

Content coming soon

Victoria Falls and Zimbabwe

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Posted by:

Vicki Tester

 

The Victoria Falls have always been one of Africa’s main attractions and for very good reason. When it is in full flood it is a thunderous, soaking experience with its spray visible for miles around.

Summary

Victoria Falls and Zimbabwe

The Victoria Falls have always been one of Africa’s main attractions and for very good reason. When it is in full flood it is a thunderous, soaking experience with its spray visible for miles around. Even when the volume of water drops the Falls are amazing to see with the best views being on the Zimbabwe side. When the Zambezi is down it does allow for other activities to take place, such as swimming in the Devil’s Pool right on the edge of the Falls or white water rafting the Zambezi below the Falls. If you are flexible as to when you travel, check what levels of water are likely to be going over the Falls when you plan to be there.

Getting here is straight forward with a number of flights arriving from different parts of Africa in to Livingstone or Victoria Falls. Or consider taking the Rovos Rail train from Pretoria (or return to) and have a stylish rail journey that is a wonderful way to start or finish your African odyssey. But book early – places go fast.

Description

Description

While here we would recommend that you consider a safari in to the Parks of Zimbabwe to see some Africa’s pristine country and wildlife. Our suggested itinerary is as follows:

Day 1 – Victoria Falls

Choose the level of accommodation that suits you as there is a whole range of hotels and lodges to choose from. You could be in a National Park in a tent on the Zambezi with elephant and lion around, in Colonial splendour or a hotel in town near the Falls.

Visit the Falls, take an elephant ride or white water raft depending on the time of year.

Day 5 – Eastern Hwange National Park

An hour flight or 4 hours on the road has you settling in to your tent overlooking the plains with its attendant wildlife. The lodges have popular waterholes and the chances are that you may even have a dinner under the stars somewhere on the plain one night.

HwangeNational   Park with its large herds of elephant, wildebeest and sable is just a short journey away, making you well placed for a wildlife feast. Game drives are in the morning and afternoon but highly recommended is joining the all day “pump run” that takes you deep in to the Park to supply the waterhole pumps with fuel and the attendants with food and wages. For a completely different take on the area join a night drive.

Day 8 – South Eastern Hwange National Park

An extended game drive through Hwange to the South East sees you arriving in a camp that is truly wild Africa and well away from everyone – just African nature to keep you entertained. Consider having your bed made up on the veranda of your tent and sleep out under the stars. Enjoy game drives daily here.

Day 10 – Victoria Falls

Return to the Victoria Falls area for the onward or homeward journey.

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

 

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

 

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

 

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

 

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

 

 

 

 

 

 

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

 

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

Picture courtesy of Peter Ellis

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Little Gems

Little Gems

Walk out onto the bridge between Zimbabwe and Zambia and watch the fearless bunjee jumping down towards the Zambezi River.

Wheat our client says

Client Feedback

Content coming soon.

Namibia Tribes

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This itinerary takes you on a guided camping trip to visit Namibia tribes and to deep in to the heart of the very north of Namibia.  This is a truly wonderful way to explore an area not accessible to regular travellers and to learn first hand how these tribes live in this harsh environment.

Summary

Tribes and Wild Camping in Namibia

This itinerary takes you on a guided camping trip deep in to the heart of the very north of Namibia.  This is a truly wonderful way to explore an area not accessible to regular travellers and to learn first hand how these tribes live in this harsh environment.

Day 1: Damaraland
Day 2: Opuwo
Day 3: Kunene River 
Day 6: Kaokoland
Day 9: Damaraland
Day 10: Windhoek

Description

Description

 

This itinerary takes you on a guided camping trip deep in to the heart of the very north of Namibia.  This is a truly wonderful way to explore an area not accessible to regular travellers and to learn first hand how these tribes live in this harsh environment.

Day 1: Damaraland
 From Windhoek, begin the journey to Damaraland in the north west of the country. Almost immediately you will see wildlife at the edge of the road as warthogs and baboons forage along the road edge.  Relax with a sundowner looking out over the waterhole with the birds flocking in to the reeds as the darkness falls.
 One night Damaraland

Day 2: Opuwo
An early start as you head north to Opuwo, keeping your eyes alert as there is a good chance of seeing the desert adapted elephants on the early part of the journey. The guides will set up the tents and then head off into town to buy the provisions for the next few days.
Take this opportunity to go with them and to wander through the town. Here the Herero and Himba tribe mix and many of them are in their traditional dress. The Herero women in their Victorian style long dresses and magnificent head dresses and the Himba with not much more on other than their beautiful jewellery, a skirt and wonderful red coloured skin (you will learn more about how they maintain this colour later in the trip).  A somewhat incongruous site is seeing a Himba lady wandering down the street in full costume and on the mobile phone!
 One night Opuwo Camping

Day 3: Kunene River
Today you head to the very north of the country and the Kunene River, which marks the border between Angola and Namibia. Here you will camp for the next three days with the Epupa Falls thundering in front of you and crocodiles sunning themselves on the little islands in the river.
During your stay here you will visit the Himba villages with a guide to learn about their nomadic life, their values and their way of life. The guide ensures that you are welcome and the tribe benefit with the food, snuff and other items given to them. This ensures all benefit from your visit.
 Three nights Kunene River Camping

Day 6: Kaokoland
The next part of your journey takes you in to the really wild parts of this region as you begin your search for the animals that have adapted to the desert. You will still occasionally come across Himba villages and Himbas herding their cattle, sheep and goats as you move from one valley to the next. The scenery is stunning and the wildlife beginning to return in numbers.
Here you will have a mixture of camping totally in the wild with the occasional stop at a camp site with shower etc. Your days start with the sunrise and end when the wine bottle is finished. You will be tempted to take many photos, particularly of the elephants, rhino (if you are really lucky) and other animals that are re-colonising the area.
 Three nights Kaokoland Camping

Day 9: Damaraland
Heading back towards civilisation, stop overnight in Damaraland, having had a final day’s game drive. A chance to take those final sunset photos of Damaraland. Leaving the peace of the true wild may be difficult.
 One night Damaraland

Day 10: Windhoek
Return either to Windhoek for your final night or to Swakopmund if you intend adding to your itinerary to this fascinating and diverse country.

We can offer an alternative journey that will give you time with the San people and this is combined with wild camping in the west of the country and then on to the Caprivi strip.

Namibia tribes - camp      Namibia tribes - Himba Girl

 

Namibia tribes - Himba Tribesman      Namibia tribes - Orumpembe

Little Gems

Little Gems

This itinerary is a little gem in itself – an opportunity to get close to and to understand people living in much the same way that they have for many years but with the odd modern convenience!

What our clients say

Client Feedback

Content coming soon

Country: Mozambique

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For those intrepid travellers or those that like to go to destinations that others have trouble finding on a map, Mozambique must be on their agenda. The long and bloody civil war ended in 1992 and the country is slowly recovering. With 2500 kms of pristine Indian Ocean coastline and countless coral islands as an asset, the Government is looking to Ecotourism to bring in much needed foreign currency and investment. But even more importantly, the people will give you a warm welcome that is genuine. The food, particularly seafood, is fresh and excellent. Mozambique must be the spiritual home and capital of Peri Peri sauce. The coral reefs are pristine, the bird life spectacular and the wildlife in the National Parks slowly recovering from the decimation of the war.

Before the civil war, Mozambique was considered one of the best wildlife experiences in the whole of Africa. Concerted efforts are being made to return these to their former glory, but this time with the help and collusion of the indigenous people. It is probably too soon to see the mainland as a safari destination (Tanzania and South Africa are a short flight away for this experience), but as a beach experience it has few rivals.

The history of Mozambique is one of foreign powers seeking to dominate and exploit the country. Each has left its mark, particularly in the architecture of the towns and city. It is possible in places like Ibo Island to find Arab, Indian, French, British, Dutch and Portuguese buildings in a small town. Many of the buildings are in need of renovation, giving the places an air of tropical decay. However the work has started and old skills are being relearned.

The country can be divided in to three main destinations from the tourist’s point of view:-

First Maputo, the capital, and the coast south to the South African border. The capital is full of atmosphere and charm and is well worth a day or two to explore. The old city is full of colonial style buildings with wide boulevards. Eiffel designed some of the buildings, such as the Central Railway Station. Travelling south the coast is silver sands and delightful – the only point to remember here is that is well worth avoiding this part during South African school holidays as it becomes very busy.

One thousand kms north of Maputo is the Bazaruto Archipelago. Much of this area is a National Park and the islands are just as you would have imagined Robinson Crusoe to have existed upon. The diving here is spectacular with the chance of seeing dolphins, turtles, humpback whales (at the right time of year) or even the rare dugong. Even further north the dives in the Tofu area are considered the best in the world to see manta rays and whale sharks. Most of the accommodation here is based on the islands and has been built with the aim of impacting as little as possible on the ecosystem.

Then right up in the north of Mozambique and close to the border with Tanzania is the area known as the Quirimbas. Sustainable tourism has been encouraged here bringing much needed work and money to a backwater in one of the world’s poorest countries. There is some development around Pemba on the mainland and more especially on several of the islands. These have lodges or historic building conversions of the highest quality. Much of the activities in all these locations are water based such as diving, snorkelling, sailing, kayaking with a guide through mangrove swamps or sports fishing. Alternatively, just doing next to nothing on a beach, with only the occasional other person on it, is very much a way of life.

There are no direct flights from the UK to Mozambique but access via Nairobi, Dar es Salaam or Johannesburg with various airlines has made these destinations a reality. This is a wonderful destination after a safari or as a holiday in its own right.

Visit before it becomes the “in” place.

Credit Peter Ellis

Credit Peter Ellis

Mozambique - credit Peter Ellis

Mozambique – credit Peter Ellis

Credit Peter Ellis

Credit Peter Ellis

 

 

 

Country: Namibia

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Namibia is one of those blessed countries that do not often feature in the news and indeed is one of those places many people have difficulty finding on a World Atlas. It nestles quietly on the western coast of Southern Africa, bordered by South Africa to the south, Botswana to the east, Angola to the north and the cold South Atlantic Ocean to the west. At roughly four times the size of the UK and with a 2 million population, crowds are a rare occurrence.

Namibia is a land of superlatives – the oldest desert, the highest sand dunes, the most cheetahs, and the largest meteorite and so it goes on. With daily flights via Johannesburg or Frankfurt, Namibia is easily accessible from the UK and is a year round destination.

This is a country for visiting for many reasons and is still a well kept secret, although gaining in popularity. Add in the fact that it has stunning scenery, is one of the safest countries in Africa, has well maintained infrastructure, drives on the left, has English as its official language and friendly people to assist you and we believe this is a destination for almost everyone.

Please note that an International Driving License is now required for Namibia.

Credit Peter Ellis

Credit Peter Ellis

Credit Peter Ellis

Credit Peter Ellis

Dune 45, Namibia - credit Jackie Appleton

Dune 45, Namibia – credit Jackie Appleton

 

 

 

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Experience Holidays is fully bonded under the Civil Aviation Authority ATOL scheme and is a member of the Worldchoice Consortium.
All the flights and flight-inclusive holidays sold by us on this website are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. When you pay you will be supplied with an ATOL Certificate. Please ask for it and check to ensure that everything you booked (flights, hotels and other services) is listed on it. Please see our booking conditions for further information or for more information about financial protection and the ATOL Certificate go to: www.atol.org.uk/ATOLCertificate
Book your holiday with confidence, safe in the knowledge that your money is protected and your holiday is in safe hands.