From a classic safari to a unique cycling trip to a thrilling trek through the bush, these getaways are worth adding to your bucket list
on December 13, 2017
For many, Africa has become the ultimate adventure destination — full of exotic cultures, extraordinary scenery, and an abundance of wildlife seen nowhere else on earth.
From The African Queen to Out of Africa to the Lion King, Africa has always exerted a powerful hold on our imagination. For many, it has become the ultimate adventure destination — full of exotic cultures, extraordinary scenery, and an abundance of wildlife seen nowhere else on earth.
Here are three African adventures worthy of adding to your bucket list.
Immerse yourself in the sights, sounds, and smells of Africa on this 13-day guided tour, “Zimbabwe Safari: Victoria Falls & Undiscovered National Parks” offered by Country Walkers. From tracking elephant on foot through pristine grassland to paddling a canoe on the Zambezi River to spotting cheetah, hippo, elephant, impala, zebra, and more via a 4×4, this itinerary offers enough adventures to last a lifetime.
Travel to Hwange, Zimbabwe’s oldest and largest national park, to view some of the 108 mammal species during visits to waterholes and on a morning game drive.
Experience the thrill of walking through the bush, learning tracking techniques from expert naturalist guides as you go. Ride a section of the historic Cape-to-Cairo Railway aboard the open-sided Elephant Express train through miles of backcountry, watching giraffe and lion from your railcar. Sip sundowners aboard a speedboat on the Zambezi River. Experience the majesty of Victoria Falls by trekking through the rainforest to jaw-dropping viewpoints on trails along the rim. Walk through conserved farmland into a remote village to see the traditional way of life.
A journey to this lesser-known African country, which recently ousted its longtime dictator, will create memories of a lifetime.
Search for the “Big Five” — African elephant, black rhinoceros, Cape buffalo, African lion, and African leopard — on a 13-day “African Safari” in Kenya with Holiday Vacations. In addition to such elusive big game, you’ll be able to spot a myriad of other animals, including giraffe, oryx, cheetah, chimpanzee, reedbuck, bushbuck, warthog, baboon, and 400 species of birds in such places as Aberdare National Park, Samburu Game Reserve, Lake Nakuru National Park, and Sweetwaters Game Reserve, as well as Jane Goodall’s Chimpanzee Sanctuary and David Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage, a refuge for elephant orphans, rhinos and other animals.
Thrill to one of the greatest spectacles on earth: the Great Migration in the Mara-Serengeti ecosystem. Watch more than a million wildebeest and thousands of zebra and antelope migrate across the Mara River from Tanzania in search of food and water. Along the way, you’ll stay in lodges and tented camps with unparalleled access to the wildlife.
While animals are the focus of this itinerary, you can also enjoy other activities: Play golf on the 18-hole course built on the former coffee estate of pioneer Karen Blixen, whose life was depicted in the film, Out of Africa. Observe a local school. Visit a women’s self-help project that trains women in surrounding villages in the craft of spinning, knitting, and weaving. And tour the National Museums of Kenya, to see exhibitions on contemporary art and the peoples and headdresses of Kenya.
South Africa Sojourn
Begin this 12-day bike trip in Cape Town, considered one of the world’s most beautiful cities, and wind your way through the Little Karoo Valley before ending on the iconic Garden Route. Along the way, take in the spectacular coastline, dramatic mountain scenery, and glorious wine country on this “Cycling South Africa: Cape Town & the Garden Route” tour from VBT.
Special experiences include visiting the summit of iconic Table Mountain and the famed Kristenbosch Botanical Gardens, touring an ostrich farm, visiting a penguin colony, dining with a local family, exploring Cape Town’s Langa township with a guide, and sampling delectable South African vintages at their source. You’ll cycle through rainforest and farmland, peaceful forests and gentle vineyards, rolling roads and wildflower-filled valleys. Round out your journey with an unforgettable meal in scenic Franschhoek, regarded as the food and wine capital of South Africa, or even with a dip in the Indian Ocean. Either way, impressions of your South African adventure will linger long after you’ve returned home.
How to Explore on Foot
For more than 38 years, Country Walkers has provided active, immersive, and unforgettable travel experiences on five continents. They offer two distinct ways to explore: scheduled, small-group Guided Walking Adventures and independent Self-Guided Walking Adventures. On tour, guests enjoy superb local cuisine, first-class guides, fine accommodations, and authentic cultural and natural encounters. Visit countrywalkers.com or call 800-234-6900 for more information.
How to Explore on a Tour
Holiday Vacations is one of America’s most reputable tour companies, with more than 44 years of experience. As a nationwide provider of air, rail, motorcoach and cruise guided vacations to more than 65 destinations worldwide, their packages are inclusive of all airfare, fine hotels, meals and must-see attractions. Expert tour directors handle all travel details, assuring you a carefree and memorable vacation. Visit holidayvacations.com for more information.
How to Explore by Bike
VBT Bicycling and Walking Vacations offers more than 55 deluxe, small-group bicycling, walking, and barge & sail vacations in 27 different countries and 10 U.S. states. It is the value leader in active biking vacations and has been rated among the “World’s Best Tour Operators” by the readers of Travel + Leisure for six years. Each trip includes all accommodations, many meals, two expert local trip leaders, unique sightseeing and cultural activities, and full van support. Unlike other companies, VBT also includes round-trip international airfare from more than 30 U.S. cities and select Canadian cities for all overseas vacations. Visit vbt.com or call 800-245-3868 for more information.
For more travel experiences to Beautiful Places on Earth™ available from Xanterra Parks & Resorts and its affiliated properties, visit xanterra.com/explore.