Beautiful Cape Town Tour and Luxury Chobe River Cruise

A 9 day trip to Botswana & South Africa 
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With a blend of two beautiful destinations in Africa, this tour will reveal the luxury found in both the city and the wild. Explore Cape Town, where Table Mountain casts a majestic focal point to an urban landscape of vineyards, penguins, colorful history, and an enthusiastic contemporary culture. Then fly to northern Botswana for a luxurious Chobe River houseboat cruise amidst the world’s largest elephant population. Both destinations will bring flashes of adventure while wrapping you in tranquility and charm.

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General Information

Photos
Bo-Kaap neighborhood of Cape Town.
Detailed Itinerary

Places Visited 

Cape Town, Table Mountain, Robben Island, Cape Point, Boulders Beach, Hout Bay, Cape Winelands, Stellenbosch, V & A Waterfront, Kasane, Chobe River, Chobe National Park

Departure Dates 

Dates are flexible and customizable for private departures.

Detailed Itinerary 

Day 1: Cape Town – Luxury in the Mother City

Table Mountain greets every Cape Town visitor as its smooth northern slopes rise for a kilometer above the city. Devil’s Peak rises to one side, while the evocatively shaped Lion’s Head stands on the other. Beneath the peaks are colorful city streets and the frothy waves of the Atlantic Ocean. It is hard to find another city that is similarly defined by the power of nature. The mountain and ocean backdrop pervade through Cape Town’s atmosphere, imbuing a relaxed rhythm that is vastly different to other cities of its size. Gaze up at Table Mountain, and you can feel the urge for adventure, but as your eyes shift to the coast, you will feel nothing but overwhelming tranquility.

You will be greeted at the airport by your private guide and transferred to the V & A Waterfront, a journey that will take you past the face of the mountain and then leave you in a suite that overlooks the harbor. The One & Only Cape Town is amongst South Africa’s most luxurious residences, a five-star hotel with views over both the mountain and the water. It’s set in a fully pedestrianized area, where fine dining restaurants and waterfront bars offer comfortable places to spend the evenings. It’s very safe to walk here throughout the day and the night, ensuring you can explore the local area in comfort.

After checking in, you will enjoy a welcome drink with your guide who will go through your Cape Town itinerary to assist with dinner recommendations and reservations, along with providing private transport throughout your stay. So you can go wherever you want to go at your leisure. For tonight, the guide will have booked you a table at Africa’s most celebrated fine dining establishment that is consistently in Restaurant magazine’s world’s top 20 restaurants. Your seven-course degustation menu with wine is a sublime introduction to the flavors and creativity of South Africa.

What’s Included: accommodation at the One & Only Cape Town, airport transfer, tour, dinner

Day 2: Cape Town – Discovering Table Mountain and Robben Island

In a revolving cable car, you will rise above Cape Town to take in the 360-degree view of the city. From the Table Mountain summit, you can see both the Pacific and the Atlantic spilling out in different directions. A spine of mountains rolls down to the tip of Africa, and a string of white beaches are tucked beneath the slopes. Let your eyes travel in the other direction, and sand dunes roll across the fynbos. A short walking route will enable you to admire every view before you descend in the cable car to discover a hidden side to Table Mountain. The vineyards of Constantia stretch across the back slopes and make for a perfect place to stop for lunch and taste a few local wines.

Later in the afternoon, you will return to the waterfront and take a boat onto the Atlantic, where Robben Island casts a lost and forlorn sight. This is where Nelson Mandela spent 18 years of his incarceration, and your guided tour will take you into the tiny cell he occupied. Narrating the stories with enthusiasm and pride, a former inmate will escort you through the prison and around the island. You see and hear about the miserable conditions, but most of all you will appreciate just how special Mandela’s message of reconciliation was. Return to the V & A Waterfront, and it is just a short walk to your hotel. For the evening, consider a meal at Chef’s Warehouse, a delightful haunt on funky Bree Street.

What’s Included: accommodation at the One & Only Cape Town, tour, breakfast

Day 3: Cape Town – The Wonders of the Cape Peninsula

Winding along the mountains and rising high above the ocean before dipping into the traditional fishing villages and pristine bays, the road along the southwestern tip of Africa has so many panoramic views that you will likely never put your camera away. Nature runs away here with white beaches and passes that rise over 1,000 meters above the ocean. The colorful cliffs are dotted with springbok, and the mountain spine rises and falls as it divides the oceans. A journey down the Cape Peninsula is Cape Town’s most memorable day trips, and it is not only just for the views. You will stop at Boulders Beach to find a large colony of jackass penguins, and then stand on the continent’s tip and look out towards Antarctica. Along the way, there are boutique markets, deserted beaches, early 20th-century villages, and an impressive roll call of sights.

What’s Included: accommodation at the One & Only Cape Town, tour, breakfast

Day 4: Cape Town – A Day Amidst the Splendor of the Cape Winelands

Pinotage grapes flourish beneath the sun in the Cape Winelands as South Africa’s unique grape fills the valleys in a lush carpet of green. Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon are also productive here, as are the beautiful tranquility of Chenin Blanc and wooden Chardonnay. Hundreds of vineyards vie for your attention, and your guide has an intimate knowledge, so will tailor the day’s tour to your tastes. Start at Delaire Graff, a delightfully opulent estate that produces a huge variety of wines. Dependent on what you like, it will be easy for the guide to take the tour in several different directions. Perhaps a journey to small cellars where the history of Pinotage can be celebrated, or you may find yourselves at large vineyards known the world over. You could also explore wine farms that pair the wine with local cheese or biltong (traditional cured meat). You have a full day tour with time to visit four or five farms, and the journey back to your hotel on the V & A Waterfront is a short and relaxing ride.

What’s Included: accommodation at the One & Only Cape Town, tour, breakfast, lunch

Day 5: Cape Town – Flexible Day in Cape Town

It is challenging to prescribe a fixed itinerary for Cape Town as this is a destination with so many attractions to discover. Museums narrate apartheid history, walking tours unravel the old slave quarter of Bo-Kaap, beaches like Clifton and Camps Bay are where the glamorous go to sunbathe, and the shopping opportunities range from boutiques to antiques, tanzanite jewelers to atmospheric craft markets. Your driver-guide will be available for the full day so that you can tailor your plans to your interests. Your guide will also assist in helping you choose what to do and where to go

What’s Included: accommodation at the One & Only Cape Town, tour, breakfast

Day 6: Cape Town to Kasane to Chobe River – First Night on the Luxury Houseboat

You will begin your day with an early start as you catch your morning flight to Johannesburg and then connect with your plane bound for Kasane in northern Botswana. You will immediately sense just how wild it is up here as elephants are often photographed from the airport or seen on the road next to the international border post. After a short transfer across the dusty savannah, you will embark on the Zambezi Queen, a boutique houseboat that cruises the Chobe River. Gaze out from your floor-to-ceiling windows and the endless plains of Namibia can be enjoyed, but on the opposite side of the river is Botswana and the thick woodland of Chobe National Park. The Chobe is home to the world’s largest population of elephants – upwards of 100,000 – and you will soon be lounging on your deck to watch the pachyderms in the water.

You will land in Botswana and take a ten-minute transfer to Namibia where you will join your boat for a sumptuous lunch. Iconic snapshots of wildlife will fill your afternoon as hippos barge their way through the water, grunting and bellowing as they seek out the prime wading spaces. Elephants are so ubiquitous you will soon lose count after the first few hundred. Giraffe are also plentiful, and you will admire their heads as they poke above the trees. Water brings life, and everything must come to the river for their daily drink, so with your stay on a luxury houseboat, you will enjoy a full big-game safari experience without having to leave the comfort and tranquility of your boat. Your relaxed day will be completed with a sumptuous three-course dinner on the upper deck and some magnificent sunset views.

What’s Included: accommodation on the Zambezi Queen, transfer, flight, safari, breakfast, lunch, dinner

Day 7: Chobe River – Beautiful Water-Based Safari Along the Chobe River

The Zambezi Queen cruises elegantly, drifting along the edge of Chobe National Park and filling your senses with the charms of the wild. As you glide along you will hear lions roar and baboons shouting from the trees. You will smell the tension as buffalo herds clash on the banks as you sit back and relax as the safari comes to you. So many animals will wander to the water, and you will watch hundreds of bird species flutter around you. Your daily itinerary is flexible, and you may want to stay on your houseboat throughout the day. Excursions can take you to traditional villages on the Namibian side of the river, and you can also explore in small tender boats to bring your very close to the banks. You will experience extraordinary moments as elephants squirt water, and hippos emerge just ten meters from your boat. All of your meals are included, and you can expect gastronomic delights along with a fabulous selection of inclusive drinks.

What’s Included: accommodation on the Zambezi Queen, safari, breakfast, lunch, dinner

Day 8: Chobe River – Tranquility and Adventure of a Chobe River Cruise

While two-night Zambezi Queen itineraries are possible, an extra day is highly recommended. This region is a landscape of pure serenity, and one that encourages you to drift off to the sounds of nature yet there is also the sense of adventure. Today you will have the same choice of activities as yesterday, and your water-based safari will continue to bring you close to the big mammals. You will be cruising a new section of the river and observe a new collection of animals while completely immersed in nature with your mind and body now attuned to the delightful rhythm of the wilderness.

What’s Included: accommodation on the Zambezi Queen, safari, breakfast, lunch, dinner

Day 9: Chobe River to Kasane – Departure

After a tranquil morning watching the hippos from your deck, you will disembark the Zambezi Queen and transfer back to Kasane in air-conditioned vehicles. From here, you will board your flight to Johannesburg and connect with your homebound flight.

What’s Included: airport transfer, flight, breakfast

Price

Starting Price 

$4,495
This trip is customizable for your private travel.

What's Included 

  • Accommodations
  • In-country transportation
  • Some or all guided tours and activities (dependent on season)
  • Expert trip planning
  • 24x7 support during your trip
The starting price is based on travel during the low season for a minimum of two travelers staying in shared 3-star accommodations. Please inquire for a custom trip quote based on your travel preferences and travel dates.