Planning a trip is not always done in a straight line. Sometimes the wheels are put in motion by a simple thought, an inspiration, seeing a “too good to pass up” deal on the Internet, getting a phone call from a friend, or in this case receiving an email with an invitation to join a small group that was forming to go to Africa.
We met Ben and Yulia in Turkey on the Gate 1 Tour we took last February. Ben is athletic, a great negotiator, and as Tim quickly learned, has a killer serve on the ping-pong table. Yulia is a tall, blonde beauty that could easily be found walking the runway for a major fashion house. But more importantly, she is kind with a sweetness that immediately puts you at ease in her company.
Tim and I were riding in the back of a tour bus in Ireland on our way to the Dingle Peninsula when I received their email with the heading “African Tour Invitation”. It took us in the neighborhood of about 20 minutes to discuss the idea and send a return message that YES, please count us in.
What Ben had put together was 13 days worth of awesomeness. But that is a LONG way to go, and I wanted to stay longer. Checking online we found a GATE 1 tour where the dates matched up perfectly so here is what we have come up with:
January 14th fly from Los Angeles via London to Cape Town South Africa arriving on the 16th. We will immediately start our Gate 1 Travel portion – 12 day Classic South Africa.
The highlights will include:
- Cape Town City & Table Mountain Tour
- Cape Peninsula Tour
- Game Viewing Cruise in Zulu land
- Game drive through Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Game Reserve
- Game drive through Kruger Park
- Soweto Tour
You can see the entire itinerary by clicking here.
This portion will finish up in Johannesburg on the morning of January 26th. Tim and I will have two days on our own to further explore the city before meeting up with Ben and Yulia’s group arriving from the states on the evening of the 27th.
I’m open to ideas and suggestions of what to see/do for those two days in Johannesburg!
The Motherland Tour has been arranged through Msuna Safaris and Travel. You can click here for an overview of that portion of the trip.
We will have three additional nights in Johannesburg before flying on to Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe where we will spend the remaining time, with a side trip into Botswana.
Highlights will include:
- Soweto Bicycle Tour
- Tour of Sterkfontein Caves
- Pretoria Walking Tour
- Sunset Cruise in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
- Dinner at The Boma
- Visit to the Victoria Falls Rainforest
- Day trip to Chobe National Park
- Visit the Bulawayo National Park
- Matopos National Park
- World’s View
- Safari Game Drive at Phomolo Private Game Reserve
- Visit to Great Zimbabwe
- Safari Game Drive at Mutirikwi National Park
This segment will end on February 7th at Harare.
The next portion of our trip remains open as of this moment. I am in the process of trying to come up with some options of how we can maximize our time, and see the most variety. Luangwa in Zambia, Bazaruto Archipelago in Vilankulos Mozambique, and Etosha in Namibia, have all been suggested.
Tim and I have our return flight from Johannesburg back to Los Angeles booked for the evening of February 12th.
GRATITUDE MOMENT: Today I am grateful for Ben and Yulia including us on the “invite list”. This is shaping up to be an incredible trip and a wonderful way to get 2015 off to a GREAT start.
We hope you will join us as we continue our adventures…