Day 1 – 3: Melton Manor, Kwandwe Private Reserve
Day 4 – 7: Redcliffe House, Cape Town
Day 8 – 11: Grootbos Private Villa, Grootbos Nature Reserve
Arrive at Johannesburg Airport this morning to begin your African safari. You are met right at the door of your aircraft and assisted through customs and immigration to check into your connecting flight to to Port Elizabeth. From Port Elizabeth you will board a light aircraft and be flown directly to Kwandwe Private Game Reserve where you will be met by your private guide and vehicle, and transferred to your private house, Melton Manor.
Nestled in the heart of South Africa’s unspoilt Eastern Cape province, Kwandwe Private Game Reserve is a world-class Big Five safari experience in 54,000 acres of malaria-free pristine private wilderness. Thousands of animals including lion, black and white rhino, buffalo, elephant and cheetah roam these expansive plains. The meaning of Kwandwe in isiXhosa is “Place of the Blue Crane”, and the Reserve is a proud home to a population of these rare, vulnerable birds. The Reserve is also sanctuary to other threatened species including the Knysna woodpecker, Cape grysbok, black wildebeest, crowned eagle and black-footed cat. Kwandwe flanks both the north and south banks of the Great Fish River, which meanders for 19 miles through pristine wilderness. Explore the reserve with your private guide on foot and by 4×4 safari vehicle or just sit back on the and keep your eyes out for animals around the house.
With sweeping views of the Afromontane forests, Melton Manor at Kwandwe is a contemporary frontier farmhouse with a modern touch. This sole-use safari villa, where the smallest detail of your stay is planned according to your specific wishes, is perfect for families or small parties of friends. The welcoming U-shape and four ensuite bedrooms are cleverly designed around the central courtyard and its large, inviting swimming pool. Distinctively South African, feature pieces of simple colonial furniture combine with up-sized, deep comfortable sofas whilst subtle game and bush references embrace the local environment.
A calm natural palette gives this contemporary house its character and tone. The use of textured fabrics and hides as well as color built up in interesting layers along with the use of wood, stone, pewter, ceramic and wicker, and bespoke lamps, mirrors and tables, gives each of the four over sized suites a unique identity.
Your private safari vehicle, complete with team of tracker and ranger, stands at the ready to explore the spectacular wildlife and unmatched scenery of Kwandwe at your leisure.
Melton offers a variety of private spaces and open plan areas for guests young and old to relax and gather in when not out exploring the reserve. Your bedroom offers a private refuge with a large veranda, enormous bed and a butler hatch for unobtrusive morning service. The generous bathtub invites you for a soak and the large windows look out over the sweeping expanse of the bushveld on all sides. Spend the afternoon hours in the library, enjoying a quiet session with a book, or have some fun with the large collection of board games.
The interactive farm-style kitchen encourages you to get stuck in and try your hand at combining flavors under the friendly guidance of your expert personal chef, or simply to watch as meals or snacks expertly take shape at your pleasure. Share meals and laughter in the dining room or around the enormous farmhouse table in the fresh air of the terrace. There is also no need to be formal – such delicious fare goes just as well in the ox wagon boma or at a casual picnic site mid-game drive.
A private safari vehicle with ranger and tracker offers a completely flexible itinerary for daily game drives, nature walks, big game walking safaris (tracking white rhino, black rhino, elephant and buffalo on foot) and fishing. Spend the afternoon hours in the library enjoying a quiet session with a book, relax around the pool or have some fun with the large collection of board games.
Today you will be picked up mid-morning and transferred back to the Port Elizabeth Airport for the short flight to Cape Town, where your exclusive use home, Redcliffe House, awaits. This afternoon is at your leisure to explore. Set on a rugged peninsula between the Indian and Atlantic Oceans with iconic Table Mountain as its backdrop, the city of Cape Town sits in one of the world’s most spectacular settings. But the scenery isn’t restricted to the city alone: short drives take visitors to white sandy beaches, traditional fishing villages and wild mountain ranges while must-see destinations such as Cape Point, the Cape Winelands and the whale-watching capital of Hermanus are easy day trips. With so many beautiful places to explore, you only have to visit Africa’s favorite city once and you’ll probably be planning your next Cape Town travel holiday before your tan’s had time to fade.
It’s a multi-faceted destination that no safari to South Africa can afford to miss. Time in Cape can be spent seeking out guided tours that offer everything from shark diving to days spent finding your favorite glass of vino in the famous winelands, or strolling the streets in the Cape Bowl shopping, dining, visiting the famous Greens Market, relaxing by the beach, exploring the colorful neighborhood of the Bo Kaap and so much more. From stylish guest houses, romantic boutique hotels, private villas overlooking the ocean and family-friendly hotels with expansive lawns and endless sea and mountain views the accommodations in Cape Town are varied and vast. We hand pick the best of the best for each custom safari itinerary to ensure that, rather a hotel or B&B, the service and scene fits perfectly with your every expectation.
The old and established neighborhoods of Gardens, Oranjezicht and Tamboerskloof merge into each other as they line the foothills of Table Mountain and Signal Hill. The area enjoys convenient proximity to the city, the Table Mountain Cableway, as well as the beaches. The narrow little streets are lined by original Cape buildings, many of which have been beautifully restored, some now housing museums and art galleries, as well as lively sidewalk cafés and highly acclaimed restaurants. Now known for its trendy and modern vibe, this region is often visited on foot, encompassing the historic parliament buildings, the Company Gardens and the lively café culture and boutiques of Kloof Street.
Your home in Cape Town. We love the house for its charm, wide-open spaces and privacy. The house can sleep eight people comfortably, but with a pool, an outside entertainment area and the Cape Town sun, which never sets early, you are sure to get a lot more from your stay than just a place to rest your head. Guests tend to stay longer than expected and some have even asked whether they can move in for good. It is a home and an experience that you will want to return to again and again.
The ability to walk to both restaurants and boutique shops provides guests with an experience where one becomes part of the city’s cosmopolitan way of life. There are exclusive and casual retailers and eateries all within walking distance of More Quarters. Access to other tourist attractions is easy and without congestion especially during peak season periods.
Table Mountain is at your doorstep, Lions Head is a stone’s throw away and the beautiful beaches of Clifton and Camps Bay are just over Kloofnek – the opportunities are endless!
Explore and discover Cape Town with the great variety of activities for kids that this city has to offer. Some activities may require a little advance planning to arrange, others are completely flexible so you can just pitch up whenever your schedule allows. Other Cape Town adventures include; bungee jumping, cage shark diving, abseiling, helicopter rides, learning to surf, paragliding, visits to the gardens and museums. The list goes on and on!
Day 5: Wild Child Peninsula Adventure
Today is about engaging both parent and children in an action filled adventure around the Peninsula. Your private guide from will pick you up after breakfast this morning and head out to the Peninsula where you will make your first stop for a tour into Kirstenbosh gardens to check out the ‘The Boomslang’. Inspired by a snake skeleton, this spectacular Tree Canopy Walkway winds and dips its way through and over the trees of the Arboretum. With tree top views of Table Mountain and out over the city, it’s a great way to start the day’s adventure.
After Boomslang, it’s on to Kalk Bay Fish Market to meet the seals. Try your luck and toss a hand line over the harbor wall to see if we can catch anything. No trip to the peninsula is complete without a picture atop “Just Nuisance”! This Great Dane was enlisted in the Navy for helping wayward sailors make their way home and lovingly remembered with a bronze casting in the harbor.
You’ll stop for lunch before visiting the African Penguins of Boulders Beach. Weather depending, head out on a Stand Up Paddleboard and/or snorkel in the rock pools. This is also a great time to just enjoy the beach and penguins. Be prepared, the water is very cold! Finally head into the peninsula reserve itself. Keep your eyes peeled for the Cape 5 (Ostrich, Baboons, Mountain Zebra, Bontebuck and Tortoise). Your time in the reserve will be spent on the deserted and often sheltered beaches paddling or exploring ship wrecks.
Day 6: Cape Winelands
Take in the sites and spectacular scenery of the Cape Winelands with your private guide as you make your way through superb mountain ranges, vineyards and Cape Dutch homesteads. Today sample a selection of some of the finest wines and top-notch ‘family-friendly’ estates.
With award-winning wine and delicious food on offer, a wine tasting at Spier is one of the most popular options in the Stellenbosch area. Here, the chocolate pairing is a particular highlight which, as the name suggests, sees the farm’s signature Méthode Cap Classique and Creative Block blends complemented by specially curated chocolates. Children are offered a special grape juice tasting and for something totally different and the 2-hour Segway tour (additional cost) is highly recommended. Not only is a ride on one of these two-wheeled, self-balancing electric vehicles a whole lot of fun, but it also offers a chance to experience the farm’s vineyards and pastures. The next stop, Middlevlei in the Devon Valley, is genuinely relaxed and down to earth estate. Little ones are encouraged to run wild on the lawns and feed the farm animals. With an outdoor wooden deck and a generous fireplace, Mulderbosch’s tasting room can facilitate tastings in both the warmer and colder months.
This day is yours to tailor and craft as you choose.
Day 7: Cape Town Tour
Explore the city of Cape Town this morning, known affectionately as the Mother City. Take in the Houses of Parliament, the Castle (built between 1666 and 1679, this is South Africa’s oldest building), the lively Greenmarket Square with its daily market, the Company Gardens and of course Table Mountain, which will give you spectacular views over the city and the Peninsula. (The cable car fee is not included as it is weather dependent). As you come back down from the mountain, make a stop at Bo-Kaap, home to the Cape Malay community, with its cobbled streets and brightly colored houses. From here you have the choice of being dropped off at the Waterfront to experience this vibrant location at your own pace, with its many shops, restaurants and pubs or at your guesthouse around lunchtime. This afternoon is at your leisure to visit the renowned Two Ocean’s Aquarium or Cape Town’s gorgeous beaches.
Your guide will pick you up this morning for the 3-4 hour scenic drive down the Indian Ocean coast to your private Ocean View Villa at Grootbos Nature Reserve. This multi-award winning 1750 hectare reserve hosts more than 750 different plant species and offers warm hospitality, excellent cuisine and fine South African wines. The conservation of endangered endemic flora and fauna and social responsibility programmes are at the heart of Grootbos Private Nature Reserve. All guests directly contribute to these causes and the upliftment of the local communities.
Visiting Grootbos Reserve is an unforgettable experience. Guests will discover delicate rare Fynbos and the largest Milkwood Forests in the world. The beaches are lapped by crystal clear waters frequented by Southern Right Whales, the rare African Penguin and Great White Sharks. There is plenty to do for the whole family at Grootbos. Caves can be explored and there are horseback rides and hiking trails through stunning scenery as well as shark cage diving, whale watching and more.
The Walker Bay coastline is just a few minutes from the Grootbos lodges. The beaches are pristine, deserted and really wonderful for investigating stone-age Klipgat Cave, magical tidal rock pools and watching the Southern Right Whale frolicking very close to shore. Specialist guides take guests on a journey of discovery here and pass on stories about early inhabitants and shipwrecks.
From June to December, guests can get a fabulous view of Whales in Walker Bay from the De Kelders cliff paths. The Whale Whisperer, a custom built whale-watching boat, offers a 2-3 hour marine Big Five adventure. The Southern Right Whale, African Penguin, Cape Fur Seal colonies, Dolphin pods and the Great White Shark can be seen on these excursions as well as huge sea bird colonies.
The most exclusive offering in the Grootbos portfolio and quite possibly one of the most exclusive offerings in the whole of South Africa is the Villa. Set apart and completely surrounded by pristine fynbos, the Villa consists of six elegant suites accommodating up to 12 guests. Here you can relax in over 1000 square meters of utter luxury and comfort, with your own private guide, chef and butler at your beck and call, not to mention complete privacy to enjoy all that Grootbos has to offer.
The elegant and spacious living spaces open generously to a combination of sheltered decks and courtyards, taking full advantage of the incredible views of the rolling hills of fynbos and white sand dunes with Walker Bay and the Hermanus mountains in the distance. And if you can take your eyes off the view for long enough, the walls and surfaces are adorned with large-scale artworks by South African artists such as Cecil Skotnes, J.H. Pierneef, Walter Meyer, William Kentridge and Walter Battis.
The collection of curated experiences and activities at Grootbos is inspired by it’s pristine surroundings and has conservation and community at its core. There is plenty to do for the whole family at Grootbos Nature Reserve. The reserve boasts some of the world’s most distinct and unique plant, bird and animal species. The next few days are yours to explore with the reserve’s specialized guiding team who lead private 4×4 drives and walks through the fynbos and forests of the reserve, trips to the nearby coast to view the Southern Right Whales from land, walks along deserted beaches, visits to archaeological and cultural sites, boat-based whale watching trips, as well as boat tours to a nearby seal island to view penguins, seals, dolphins and great white sharks. Whatever adventures you choose, the day is yours to schedule.
Some of the included activities are horseback riding on the Reserve, visits to the Klipgat Cave, birding walks, flower safaris, visits to local beaches and whale watching from the cliffs. Activities available at an additional cost include horseback riding on the beach, whale watching by boat and cage shark diving.
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