We hope that this example holiday will give you give some inspiration to help you begin to plan your own dream holiday to Africa.
The next couple of pages show a summary of the itinerary, and then there is a page on each place that is included.
Important travel information for visitors to South Africa is included at the back of this document.
All the holidays we offer to our clients are tailor-made, so we can adjust this trip to fit in with your travel dates, interests, preferred accommodation, and of course your budget.
All our travel consultants have extensive knowledge of travel throughout Southern and East Africa, and our strong relationships with suppliers mean that our rates to you will always be competitive.
Let us take the hard work out of planning your trip: you can get in touch either by giving us a call on +44 (0) 1932 428380, completing the Enquiry Form on our website or emailing us at email@example.com.
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The Travel Butlers Team
Holiday Title: Going back to Nature
Holiday Destination: Holiday to South Africa for 12 nights
Passengers: 2 Adults
*Excludes international flights from your home country - please ask us if you would like us to include these for you.
ABTOT provides protection for your booking as set out in Section 6 of our booking conditions.
Holiday Title: Going back to Nature
Passengers: 2 Adults
13 Day Car Rental: Group D: VW Polo Vivo or similar - Automatic Transmission (on Super Cover)
Drive to the Drakensberg (approx 305 km / 3 h 45 mins). Montusi Mountain Lodge offers genuine hospitality in the tranquillity of one of the most beautiful settings in South Africa.
After breakfast drive to Durban (approx 300 km / 3 h 30 mins). With over 320 days of sunshine per year, Durban is a holidaymakers' paradise. The 6 km 'Golden Mile' of beaches are packed with sun worshippers throughout the year, while the warm waters of the Indian Ocean entice swimmers, surfers, diversand other watersport enthusiasts.
This morning you will drive into KwaNgwanase (Manguzi or Kosi Bay - allow about 5 hours from Durban). Proceed through the town and near the end, look out for the Total Garage - on your left handside. Once you arrive at this service station, a Kosi representative will meet you there and drive you to a secure car parking area where you will leave your car. The trip to Kosi Forest Lodge from here will take approximately 25 minutes in an open 4x4 vehicle and departs at 16:00.
Kosi Forest Lodge is set in a beautiful sand forest on the banks of Lake Shengeza in the iSimangaliso Wetland Park. Over the next few days explore waterways by guided canoe, ancient forests and grasslands by motorized boat or on foot. This is a birder's paradise where one is often lucky enough to spot the rare Palmnut Vulture perched at the very top of the raffia palms.
St Lucia Wetland Park
After breakfast you will be transferred back to the secure car area, where you will pick up your hire car.
Drive to Mkuze (approx 135 km / 2 h 30 mins). Ghost Mountain Inn is the perfect setting to experience more of the allure of KZN in stylish comfort.
After breakfast check out and allow about an hour to drive to the Pakamisa Game Reserve. Pakamisa is home to a collection of magnificent Arabian Horses and there are few greater thrills than exploring the wild African bush on horseback.
Pakamisa Game Reserve
Montusi Mountain Lodge offers genuine hospitality in the tranquillity of one of the most beautiful settings in Southern Africa. Space, comfort and peace are what you will find when you treat yourself to the natural splendour and peaceful, romantic ambiance of this Drakensberg haven.
Situated in the Kwazulu-Natal Drakensberg, halfway between Johannesburg and Durban, Montusi is one of the few destinations with a panoramic vista of the Drakensberg's most famous feature, the Amphitheatre escarpment.
The scenery is breathtakingly beautiful, and nature lovers will enjoy the many hiking and walking trails available for all levels of ability. There are easier walks through lush meadows and across clear streams, or more strenuous hikes up and across rugged mountain terrain.
In addition there are countless other activities including bird watching, horse riding and trout fishing (on a 'catch and release' basis). Golfers can visit the 9-hole Amphitheatre Golf Course at Hlalanathi just 8 km away. The lodge also has a tennis court and racquets/balls can be collected from the main reception for any budding Wimbledon champions in the making.
The main lodge consists of a large and beautifully thatched main lodge with reception, dining room, terrace, bar, lounge and massage room.
The swimming pool looks out at the escarpment and the surrounding rocks have provided inspiration for this unusual and beautifully crafted pool which makes it the guest's favourite place in summer.
The intimate restaurant (with a log fireplace) is renowned for sumptuous local cuisine with innovative menus.
The 16 individual free-standing suites offer guests privacy, are uniquely decorated with stunning views of the Amphitheatre Mountain. Suites have one or two bedrooms with a en-suite bathroom (bath and walk-in shower), a lounge, patio, gas operated fireplace and tea/coffee making facility.
Along side each suite there is a private covered carport for one vehicle.
|Room:||1 x Mountain Suite|
|Includes:||Breakfast and dinner are included.|
With over 320 days of sunshine per year, Durban is a holidaymakers paradise. The 6 km 'Golden Mile' of beaches are packed with sun worshippers throughout the year, while the warm waters of the Indian Ocean entice swimmers, surfers and other water sport and diving enthusiasts.
For those looking for attractions away from the sand and sea, Durban offers a bustling cosmopolitan city with excellent restaurants, museums, live music and theatre. Durban is also home to the largest population of Indian descendents in South Africa, so it is not surprising, therefore, that the city is renowned for its aromatic spice markets and delicious curries - reputed to be some of the best in the world outside of India itself.
Some of the best diving in South Africa can be found at Aliwal Shoal, just 50 km south of Durban. Aliwal is voted as being one of the top 10 dive sites in the world. Besides being able to dive and swim alongside the many tropical fish species and loggerhead turtles, the major attraction at Aliwal is the ragged tooth shark, or 'Raggy' as it is fondly known within the local dive community. From July to November the ragged tooth sharks visit Aliwal Shoal in their annual migration from the Cape to the St Lucia Marine Reserve, and the docile nature of this species means that divers can get extremely close to the sharks without the need for a diving cage.
One of Durban's premier hotels, the Southern Sun Elangeni has breathtaking views of Durban's Golden Mile and warm Indian Ocean.
All the 734 air-conditioned rooms have sea views, and are furnished in a modern style. There are also 3 outdoor pools (one of which is heated), beauty salons, a spa and a gymnasium.
The hotel is home to several of Durban's most exciting restaurants and bars. Guests are presented with a wide range of dining options, from generous buffets to traditional Japanese and exotic curries. Visitors looking to experience glamour and stunning views of the Indian Ocean and vibrant cocktails head to Sky, the hotel's exclusive Durban venue at the top of the Maharani Tower.
|Room:||1 x Standard Room|
|Includes:||Breakfast is included.|
Kosi Forest Lodge is located in a private nature reserve in a tranquil sand forest alongside one of the lakes in the Kosi Lakes system, an unspoilt wilderness area which forms part of the Greater St Lucia Wetland Park (also now known as the iSimangaliso Wetland Park), an internationally recognised World Heritage Site.
The 11,000 hectare, 30 km long nature reserve is a tropical paradise of crystal clear water, marshland, swamp and coastal forests that is home to about 250 species of bird. Activities here include guided canoeing on the lakes, walks through the ancient Raffia Forest, boat trips to explore the unique system of lakes and channels where you may spot hippo, crocodile, and rare birds like the Pels Fishing Owl and Palm Nut Vulture, and exceptional snorkelling in the warm waters of the Indian Ocean. Another additional activity is to join a 4x4 excursion to Kosi Bay Mouth to view ancient Thonga Fish Traps.
A massive Zulu Podberry tree is the focal point of the main lodge with the lounge, dining room and bar all opening onto a large wooden deck around the tree.
Kosi Forest Lodge takes full advantage of Maputuland's sultry weather with most meals served alfresco - on the deck or under large Albizia trees. Candles light the area at night giving it a warm, romantic ambience reminiscent of wild African adventures of long ago.
The rooms are constructed of wood, thatch and canvas, each positioned to give total privacy. They are comfortably furnished with mosquito nets and fans. A unique feature of each room is the romantic outside boma bathroom with bath and shower set in soft white sand under the forest canopy.
There are also 2 family rooms which consist of 2 bedrooms connected by an outdoor passage of approximately 2 metres long.
A swimming pool, built into the deck at the lake's edge is a wonderful way to spend a few relaxing hours in the sunshine, while watching hippos and flamingoes in the lake.
|Room:||1 x Forest Room - Stay 3 / Pay 2 offer applied (applicable to certain periods only)|
|Includes:||All meals; tea/coffee; a guided canoe trip, guided walk in the Raffia Forest, the Isibindi Foundation Levy; and the Conservation fee are included.
Children under the age of 12 years are not permitted on forest walks.
At the foot of the legendary Ghost Mountain, 300 km north of Durban, lies the privately owned 4* Ghost Mountain Inn, a perfect setting for taking time out to relax and experience the charms of Africa in comfort and style. This intimate and beautiful hotel is the ideal location from which to explore the array of wildlife and coastal reserves in Maputaland and the Elephant Coast.
Nature enthusiasts will appreciate the abundance of wildlife and the scenic splendors of this rich and diverse region during game drives or guided forest walks in the nearby Mkhuze Big 5 Game Reserve, or join a boat cruise on Lake Jozini and view elephants swimming or even fish for a tiger fish. The area is also a bird watcher's paradise, and birding walks can be arranged. Night game drives in the Manyoni Private Game Reserve are another highlight.
The more active can work out in the small gym, take a scenic hike up Ghost Mountain and be rewarded with the outstanding views of the Lebombo Mountain Range and the plains beyond, or the culturally curious can visit a Zulu homestead and meet the locals.
Alternatively just take time out to relax and be pampered with skin and body treatments at the spa or simply enjoy the two swimming pools and glorious indigenous gardens.
Relax in one of the 74 tastefully appointed en-suite bedrooms or suites, all set within the gardens. Guests can choose from one of 4 suites, or a Mountain View Room, a Garden Room, a Superior Room or a Standard Room, depending on budget. Four of the Standard Rooms are interleading, making these an ideal choice for families travelling with children.
Meals are either served in the dining room, outdoors on the terrace or under the stars in the traditional boma.
|Room:||1 x Superior Room|
|Includes:||Breakfast is included.|
Pakamisa Lodge offers an unforgettable African experience in a private 2,500 hectare game reserve. The reserve is predator and malaria free, creating a safe environment for a range of activities for adults and children not usually available in other Big 5 Reserves. Pakamisa in Zulu means 'to lift up' and guests are assured that their spirits will soar in this African Shangri-La.
Pakamisa is home to a collection of magnificent Arabian horses all superbly trained by the owner. There are few greater thrills than exploring the wild African bush on horseback. Each trail ride offers incredible game viewing from the meandering plains or the challenging hilly ascents. There is nothing more exciting than riding into a herd of impala, giraffe, wildebeest and warthogs, and getting close to them, before they trot off. No horse lover coming to South Africa should miss this opportunity!
For visitors who would like to experience Pakamisa on two legs rather than four, there are numerous walks and trails through the valleys, along the river banks, or climb the Pakamisa Mountain for the most rewarding panoramic view of 360 degrees. Or traverse the reserve in an open safari vehicle with an experienced game ranger who will explain the fascinating life cycles of insects, plants and trees and the behaviour patterns of mammals, big and small, that you may encounter along the way.
The main lodge has breathtaking views over the reserve, the evergreen valley and plains of the Pongola River and the surrounding mountains. The eight meter high ceilings, legendary of hotels in bygone days, create a pleasant, cool atmosphere. The impressive Main House, with its eclectic mix of African and European art and antiques, offers an ideal place for quiet relaxation or pre-dinner socializing, alternatively slip into the intimate atmosphere of the Hunter's Bar for a cocktail. The large pool is the ideal place to relax around and enjoy a light snack or a lunchtime drink.
The 8 spacious, tastefully-decorated suites offer the highest standards for comfort and complete relaxation. Each suite consists of a bedroom, a deluxe bathroom, and a cosy sunken lounge leading onto a spacious veranda. The rooms have been individually styled and themed after an African animal. The suites are deliberately techno-free with no telephone or television, but internet access is available at the reception area of the Main House for those who simply cannot let go of the outside world.
|Room:||1 x Luxury Suite|
|Includes:||All meals; tea/coffee; and choice of 2 activities per day (horse riding, game drive, guided bush walk, archery, target shooting with air rifle) are included. PLEASE NOTE: All other drinks are NOT included. Horse riding is restricted to one ride per day per person - weight limit 90 kg.
Please Note: As the animals are wild, it is not possible to guarantee what you will see during your safari.
CURRENT ENTRY RULES IN RESPONSE TO CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19): Lockdown restrictions restrict entry into South Africa, except for South African nationals and foreign nationals with valid residence permits.
It is expected that these rules will be lifted and that the entry requirements will revert to normal as soon as the government of South Africa deems it safe to do so.
Normally, holders of the following passports do not require a visa to enter South Africa when travelling as a tourist for stays up to 90 days:
United Kingdom; United States of America; Canada; Australia; Ireland; Belgium; Netherlands; Italy; France; Germany; Spain, Switzerland.
If you are a passport holder from another country, please contact your local South Africa High Commission or Embassy for up-to-date visa requirements, as citizens of certain countries (including New Zealand) are required to obtain visas before travelling. Please note that if you are applying to the Embassy for your visa, some visas can take a long time to be processed so please do take this into consideration, as it is your responsibility to ensure you have the correct visa in place before you travel.
Please note that anyone travelling to South Africa should have a valid return ticket and a valid passport.
Your passport should be valid for a minimum period of 30 days from the date of exit from South Africa. However, some immigration officials still request that a passport should have at least 6 months validity from the date of entry to South Africa so to avoid problems on arrival, we advise that your passport meets this requirement instead.
The passport must also have sufficient pages for entry/exit stamps - AT LEAST 2 BLANK PAGES.
TRAVELLING TO/FROM SOUTH AFRICA WITH CHILDREN YOUNGER THAN 18 YEARS OF AGE AT DATE OF TRAVEL: It has been recently announced that the immigration laws for children travelling to South Africa who do NOT require a visa are to be relaxed, however not all airlines have updated their systems at the moment to reflect this amendment. Therefore, until we have received notification that all systems have been fully updated with the new relaxed rules, we are strongly advising that all passengers still adher to these following guidelines:
Parents travelling with children must produce an unabridged birth certificate for the child, showing full details of the child's parents. If the birth certificate is in a language other than English, it must be accompanied by a sworn translation issued by a competent authority in the country concerned.
If the child is adopted, the adoption certificate must be produced.
If only one parent is travelling, said parent must also show consent in the form of an affidavit from the other parent named on the birth certificate authorising the child to travel (the affidavit must be no more than 3 months old from the date of travel - a blank Parental Consent Affidavit can be downloaded from http://southafricahouseuk.com/documents/parentconaff.pdf), or a court order granting full parental responsibilities to the travelling parent, or (where applicable) a death certificate for the deceased parent. Legally separated parents should also provide a court order when the other parent does not give consent.
Where a person is travelling with a child who is not their biological child, he/she must produce an unabridged birth certificate for the child supplemented by affidavits from the child's parents/legal guardian giving consent for the child to travel and copies of the identity documents or passport of the parents/legal guardian PLUS their contact details.
There are also additional rules for unaccompanied minors - available on request.
PLEASE NOTE: All documents must be original - PHOTOCOPIES ARE NOT ACCEPTED. In the case of foreign countries that do not issue unabridged birth certificates, a letter to this effect issued by the competent authority of the foreign country should be produced.
PLEASE NOTE: Countries can change their entry requirements at any time. Travel Butlers try to ensure that the information displayed here is correct, but the onus remains with the traveller to verify the information with the relevant High Commission or Embassy and ensure that they can comply with current passport and visa requirements.
You are advised to contact your doctor or clinic around 4-8 weeks before your trip to check whether you need any vaccinations and to get their professional medical advice regarding travel to South Africa.
To help avoid heatstroke, drink plenty of bottled water/fluids, and keep out of the midday sun.
Tap water is purified and safe to drink in major cities and towns, however, we do advise that you do not drink the water in more remote places such as the camps in the National Parks - the water may be safe to drink, but it simply is not worth the risk, as bottled water is widely available.
Whatever you do, do not drink water from any river lake without firstly purifying the water. Always take water with you when you go on a hike, and have a bottle in the car on a long journey to avoid dehydration.
There is a risk of malaria in and around the Kruger National Park/Mpumalanga Province, the Limpopo (Northern) Province, and the north-eastern part of KwaZulu-Natal - check with your doctor about suitable antimalarial tablets. Try to avoid mosquito bites wherever possible - wear loose long-sleeved clothing and trousers, and use a repellent on clothing and exposed skin.
There is no risk of yellow fever in South Africa, so a yellow fever vaccination is NOT required for travellers whose sole destination is South Africa. However, in accordance with International Health Reguations, South Africa requires all travellers over one year of age arriving from a yellow fever risk country, or having been in transit longer than 12 hours at the airport of such a country, to have a yellow fever certificate. These countries include Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda but it is up to the traveller to check the full list via http://www.who.int/ith/2015-ith-annex1.pdf?ua=1.
If you need emergency medical assistance during your trip, dial 10177 and ask for an ambulance.
The 11 official languages are Zulu, Xhosa, Afrikaans, Pedi, English, Tswana, Sotho, Tsonga, Swati, Venda and Ndebele. Whilst many visitors will hear at least a couple of the tribal languages during the course of their stay, it is possible to travel extensively and comfortably with just English as a language.
The South African society is quite liberal, as gay marriage was legalised in 2006 nationwide and everyone’s rights are protected under the constitution. In some more rural areas, however, the local people may not be quite as liberal thinking, so whilst everyone is of course entitled to their own sexual preferences and gender identity, we would advise all clients of the LGBT+ community to refrain from public displays of affection (including kissing and holding hands) and to be as discrete as possible about their relationship if travelling to a rural/remote area.