Tinga Narina Safari Lodge Itinerary & Wines

Aerial shot of Table Mountain in Cape Town, South Africa
A 12 day trip to South Africa 
5 out of 5 stars
3 reviews

South Africa has it all, and this itinerary connects all of its charms and colors. Big Five safari in the redolent wilderness, whale watching on pristine beaches, city sights framed by Table Mountain, and elegant tones of the Winelands. This 12-day Tinga Narina Safari Lodge itinerary provides a complete snapshot of South Africa, immersing you in the different paradigms and imbuing the captivating atmosphere of the country. 

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Most tours are customized for private travel.

General Information

Row of colorfully painted beach huts in Cape Town, South Africa
Detailed Itinerary

Places Visited 

Nelspruit, Kruger National Park, Tinga Narina Concession, Franschhoek, Cape Winelands, Hermanus, Cape Town, Table Mountain, Cape Peninsula, Boulders Beach

Departure Dates 

Dates are flexible and customizable for private departures.

Detailed Itinerary 

Day 1: Exploring the Luxury of Tinga Narina

A rhino stands silently alongside the rutted trail. Zebras canter away into the distance, kicking up a mystical swirl of dust. An elephant stands above the vehicle, and it's impossible to miss the giraffes that roam along the horizon. Africa promises so many images of wilderness and wildlife; within an hour of landing, you're already amongst them. Your private transfer will meet you at Johannesburg International Airport and assist you to the domestic terminal for the short flight to Nelspruit. You're picked up by your safari guide and quickly enter into the world of Kruger National Park. This ecosystem is home to over half the world's rhinos and an abundant collection of the big cats. So you rarely have to wait long for the premier safari postcard-worthy picture.

Spend the afternoon driving through Kruger. Go slowly and pick up on the natural cues. Elephants lead you to a waterhole being used by hyenas. Kudu and springbok skip across the trail. Peer closely into the trees and something moves. Keep looking. Concentrate. And as the branch moves again, you spot a leopard. As sunset falls, you arrive at Tinga Narina Lodge, set within its own private concession. Great numbers of wild animals surround the lodge, keeping the safari going into the night. Settle into your luxury suite and you can still see the wildlife through the window. Elegant and imbued with old-world charm, Tinga Narina is both a journey into the wild and a celebration of traditional safari luxury. Consider reading some of our traveler reviews of African safaris to further refine and perfect your own African Safari itinerary. 

What's Included: transfer, domestic flight, accommodation

Days 2 – 3: Big Game Safari and the Magic of the Bush

An unexpected sound wakes you. Peer out through the curtains and there's a buffalo herd grunting in the nearby trees. Keep watching and a rhino appears, before a herd of impala spring past. Breakfast is served in the suite, and you keep watching the action. Then the day is fully customizable to your safari interests. All safari activities are included, allowing you to explore the bush with an experienced ranger and tracker. Head out on game drives through Tinga Narina and Kruger. Lion prides bask in the open, and a young lioness comes to inspect the safari vehicle. Stay silent and you're treated to wonderful photo opportunities. Admire the interaction at waterholes, with big pachyderms scaring away the warthogs and springbok. The vehicle stops beside a pool of hippos before looping around a savannah that's often alive with the scent of cheetahs.

On these days, you enjoy morning and afternoon activities, with the early afternoon spent relaxing at the lodge. As it's a private concession, activities within Tinga Narina enable you to go off the trail and get extremely close to the action. That's made more intimate with a nature walk. Buffalo and even elephants appear far larger when you're not in the safari vehicle. Elevating the wild exploration is Tinga Narina's opulence. There's something quintessentially South African about lounging on a private wooden verandah, sipping internationally-acclaimed wine, and watching a dazzling animal cast wander by. Tinga Narina provides a sublime welcome to the continent, unraveling the charms of safari while also introducing you to the luxury offered.

What's Included: accommodation, all meals, safari activities

Day 4: The Charms of the Cape Winelands

You know you're somewhere special when the airport transfer takes you within meters of wild rhinos and lion prides. Take a game drive that loops back to Nelspruit, where you board a scheduled flight to Cape Town. You're greeted at the airport for the one-hour journey into the Cape Winelands and South Africa's oldest town: Franschhoek. History lives on in the whitewashed terraces and elegant vineyards that cascade across the area. This culinary hub is a destination for indulging all your senses. A wine train connects a handful of luxury vineyards and there are various options for a dinner that mixes South African flavors with French-inspired cooking. For the next two nights, you're based at the sublime Rusthof Guest House, a place that reflects the opulence of the town.

What's Included: accommodation, breakfast, domestic flight, airport transfers

Day 5: A Personalized Wine Tour

Boutique cellars reveal 200 years of cultivation; award-winning vineyards stretch out from rustic farmhouses while wineries offer staggering views of the Winelands' iconic mountains. There are hundreds of different wine farms in the region and today's private tour is personalized to your taste buds. Some wine farms present the breadth of South African flavor while others are locally famous for their Pinotage or Shiraz. Sit down to chocolate and wine or biltong (cured meat) and wine pairings. Complement the tasting with a lavish three-course lunch or keep enjoying the snacks as you visit four or five different wine farms. From bubbly whites to heavy reds, the guide will customize the farms you visit, including the opportunities to meet vineyard and cellar owners. Return to the guesthouse around late afternoon and Rusthof will present its select menu of favorite wines from the region.

What's Included: accommodation, breakfast, lunch, tour

Day 6: Relaxing Along an Untamed Coastline

The road winds south from Franschhoek, taking you across a rugged mountain pass and through the scorched valleys of the Cape. There's a surreal sense of space, with open miles of cornfields stretching towards the horizon. As the road twists and turns, the green returns, accompanied by the Atlantic Ocean. Sail out from here and the next landmass you would reach is Antarctica. It's a two-hour drive down to the coast and the quaint beach town of Hermanus. An easy hiking trail weaves along the town's cliffs, taking you to quiet beaches and beautiful coastal panoramas. And then there are the whales, dozens of them residing in the calm waters of the bay. Southern right whales migrate here to raise their young while humpback whales send flumes of water into the air as they swim through the bay. Your accommodation provides ocean views, so it's possible to spot the whales from the luxury of your own room.

What's Included: accommodation, breakfast, transfer

Day 7: Whale Watching Safari

Hermanus is widely regarded as one of the best spots in the world to see whales from land. From May to December, they leave their Antarctic feeding grounds and fill the Hermanus Bay. A whale caller blows on a kelp horn to alert every one of the whales’ presence, and from September to November, there's barely a quiet moment. Today you get even closer on a whale watching boat safari. A mother and calf breaches in unison, jets of water are sent arrowing into the sky, and the size of these great mammals is appreciated as you get closer and closer. The afternoon is free, giving you a chance to relax on one of the Hermanus beaches and soak up the quaint atmosphere of the town. And just when you've forgotten about it, a loud blow on the horn reveals there's another whale breaching in the bay.

What's Included: accommodation, breakfast, tour

Day 8: Table Mountain and the Mother City

Leave Hermanus in the morning and it's only two hours to Cape Town. Table Mountain dominates the landscape, a vertical slab of rock that stands over a kilometer above the ocean. Head straight to the cable car station and ascend to its summit, where an easy walking trail takes you through a series of inspiring viewpoints. Look south and the mountain chain continues to the tip of Africa. Look north and the beaches extend northwards, unbroken as they run towards Namibia. And down below is Cape Town, a city of many colors and cultures. Descend by cable car and you're transferred to your luxury boutique accommodation in Kloof, your base for the next four nights. The suburb is ideal for easy exploration, within walking distance to the restaurants of the city center yet equally close to the hiking trails of Lion's Head.

What's Included: accommodation, breakfast, transfer, tour

Days 9 – 10: Free Time to Explore Cape Town

Cape Town has many different sides. There's the evocative history of South Africa, vividly portrayed in the District Six Museum and Robben Island; Mandela spent 18 years imprisoned here and an ex-inmate can show you around. Lounge on the white beaches of Camps Bay and Clifton, luxurious suburbs that also offer a range of stunning oceanfront dining. Explore the colorful markets of the city, taking in the souvenirs from all across Africa; like springbok skins, drums, jewelry, paintings, and photographs. Wind around the mountain to the elegant gardens of Kirstenbosch or watch the world go by from the Waterfront. This is a city that can keep you entertained for weeks. Two days allows you to get a feel for what's on offer and settle into the relaxed atmosphere.

What's Included: accommodation, breakfast

Day 11: Journeying to the Tip of Africa

A rugged road clings to the edge of Africa, carved into the cliffs that stand above the Atlantic Ocean. Follow it south and you wind up and down the Table Mountain chain, every mile bringing another view that merges ocean colors with towering rock. First you arrive in Hout Bay, an old fishing village with the fragrance of fish and chips. Then it's Boulders Beach, a small piece of sand that's packed with African Penguins. Some waddle with a trademark comedy, others dive from the rocks, and various couples escape into the bushes to guard eggs. Like the safari in Kruger, you're just a few meters away. Keep going south and you cross the emptiness of Cape Point, winding towards the two white lighthouses that mark the edge of the continent. The views continue and steep walkways take you to hidden bays of white sand and raging waves. Loop back to Cape Town for your final night in South Africa, a chance to savor another of the city's excellent restaurants and watch the Atlantic sunset for a final time.

What's Included: accommodation, breakfast, tour

Day 12: Departure

Take a last look at South Africa as you're transferred to the airport. Table Mountain stands imperiously while the colorful suburbs dot the landscape. Cape Town's international airport is the second biggest on the continent, offering a variety of connections to take you back home.

What's Included: airport transfer, breakfast


Starting Price 

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.