Signal hill in Cape Town, South Africa

Journeying Through Nelson Mandela's Roots Tour

Ratings of Zicasso's Service
Customizable Itinerary

This is a sample itinerary to inspire a personalized trip designed with your travel specialist

Countries Visited

South Africa

Places Visited

Johannesburg, Qunu, Mthatha, Coffee Bay...

See all

Suggested Duration

11 Days

Few world politicians have been as respected or revered as Nelson Mandela, peaceful dismantler of apartheid and creator of the Rainbow Nation. This unique journey follows in his footsteps, from rural tribal upbringing in the Transkei to the vibrant townships where the ANC fought the regime. Then onwards to 27 years of incarceration and a colorful celebration of the future. It's a trip through a legend's lifetime, yet also a kaleidoscopic journey into modern South Africa.

Customizable Itinerary

Expand All

Trip Highlights

  • Visit rural Mandela's birthplace and explore his early years as rolihlahla, the trouble maker
  • Immerse yourself in the heritage and charm of Transkei, the most traditional of South Africa's regions and a place that continues to practice Mandela's rich Xhosa customs
  • Safely discover the vibrancy of Soweto and Alexandra, the townships that made Mandela and always welcome tourists with wonderful displays of color
  • Explore South Africa's most important museums, like Hector Pieterson, and the Apartheid Museum
  • Hear the stories from an expert Mandela guide, and experience the traditional practices that made the man
  • Take a guided tour around Robben Island by an ex-inmate who was incarcerated alongside Nelson Mandela, and listen to tales that only increase your admiration
  • Recreate Mandela's first steps of freedom outside Drakenstein Correctional Facility and visit the scenes of his great speeches
  • Tour through the colors and cultures of modern Cape Town, a chance to appreciate the future of the Rainbow Nation
  • Discover Cape Town's famous experiences, like Table Mountain, Bo Kaap, and the wineries around Stellenbosch

Detailed Description

Even after his death, Mandela's presence is unmistakable in South Africa. The modern nation's father is talked about in taxis, celebrated in tribal villages, and honored by all those who call the Rainbow Nation home. Few world politicians have been so revered. And few have been so virtuous or unprejudiced. The icon's story is told in The Long Walk to Freedom and remnants of his days are integral to dozens of places across South Africa. This unique South Africa vacation connects the dots of history and immerses you in the life and times of Nelson Mandela. It's a journey from tribal villages to island prisons, from vivid Xhosa-speaking townships to streets that epitomize the inspiration of the Rainbow Nation. By following through Mandela's footsteps, you not only trace a trail through history but you also explore the diversity of the present and this icon's great creation: modern South Africa.

Nelson Mandela's story is about far more than incarceration on Robben Island. What about his years in the township slums of Alexandra and Soweto, places drenched in murals and streets of peace? Every visitor is welcomed warmly here, a custom of openness and respect spreading across communities that are poor economically but rich in culture. Some of South Africa's most important museums are also located here, and you'll walk down the only street to be home to two Nobel Peace Prize recipients. An expert Mandela guide takes you around, and your accommodation reveals the elegant green suburbs of modern Johannesburg.

Mandela wasn't always a man preaching peace. He was known by the nickname rolihlahla, meaning trouble maker in the local Xhosa language. At his birthplace in Qunu, an enthusiastic museum recalls his childhood. The surrounding Transkei region was semi-independent during apartheid and remains South Africa's most traditional area. Circular huts dot the green hills; witch doctors perform ceremonies on white beaches, and villages welcome you with the passion that's reserved for every stranger. Three nights in idyllic Coffee Bay provide an easy immersion in this Xhosa heritage, along with a sublime Indian Ocean view and dozens of walking trails down a spectacular coastline.

Fly to Cape Town for your final five nights. Discover Robben Island with an ex-inmate as your guide, relive Mandela's release from Drakenstein Correctional Facility and celebrate the colors and cultures of the city. While you commemorate the past, you also indulge in the present, and the famous attractions of the Mother City, like Table Mountain, sublime beaches, and elegant wine estates doused in history. Like the rest of the tour, the focus is not merely on how a great man developed, and fought apartheid. It's a celebration of everything he created, told through the stories of locals and the enthusiastic smiles of all those you meet. This is Nelson Mandela's Rainbow Nation, a place that is far more complex than black and white.

Starting Price

$5,715 per person (excluding international flights)

Your Zicasso trip is fully customizable, and this sample itinerary is a starting place for your travel plans. Actual costs are dynamic, and your selection of accommodations and activities, your season of travel, and other such variables will bring this budget guideline up or down. Throughout your planning experience with your Zicasso specialist, your itinerary is designed around your budget. You can book your trip when you are satisfied with every detail. Planning your trip with a Zicasso travel specialist is a free service.

What's Included

  • Accommodations
  • In-country transportation
  • Some or all activities and tours
  • Expert trip planning
  • 24x7 support during your trip

Your final trip cost will vary based on your selected accommodations, activities, meals, and other trip elements that you opt to include.

Reviews of Zicasso's Referral Service

4.94 stars based on 998 reviews.

South Africa, Botswana & Zimbabwe Family Tour Review:...
"Natalie from the travel agency was AMAZING."

Reviewed By Patricia (.

Luxury South Africa, Zimbabwe & Botswana Travel Review:...
"The trip was beyond my expectations, I loved almost every...

Reviewed By Cathy C.

South Africa Luxury Birhtday Trip Review: Cape Town, Franschhoek,...
"Neil from the travel agency was amazing to work with!!"

Reviewed By Kathleen S.

South Africa & Namibia Travel Review: Cape Town, Kirstenbosch...
"...Richelle's excellent guidance and the warmth of the...

Reviewed By George L.

South Africa Family Tour Review: Cape Town, Vineyards, Safari,...
"Our trip to South Africa exceeded all of our expectations."

Reviewed By Beth C.

South Africa, Zimbabwe, Botswana & Zambia Tour Review:...
"Cearl, our agent, took care of everything expeditiously...

Reviewed By Tee B.

Your Dream Vacation

in 3 simple steps

  1. 1

    Describe your dream trip

  2. 2

    Get matched with top travel specialists

  3. 3

    Book the trip

Free service - no credit card required