Select your travel style--whether it's our signature expeditions, our active outdoors adventures, or our lower-priced journeys. Or choose how you want to travel: by train or small ship, on an expedition geared for photographers or for families, and more.
Our newest small-group trips, provided in partnership with G Adventures, blend fun, hands-on exploration with meaningful cultural encounters, as well as more free time and choices, all for an unbeatable value. See All »
Improve your photography skills with the guidance of a National Geographic photographer— whether you’re traveling through Japan or heading out on shoots during an intensive weekend workshop in New York City. See All »
As the sun rises over Kruger National Park—and an elephant and her young calf wander past you—greet another remarkable day in southern Africa. Keep your sense of wonder at the ready on a 21-day adventure that takes in the iconic sights of southern Africa. Fall for Cape Town’s remarkable beauty, feel the power of Victoria Falls reverberate in your core, and watch for the Big Five alongside a researcher from National Geographic's Big Cats Initiative.
Itinerary - 21 Days
Day 1 — Cape Town
Arrive at any time. Arrival transfer included.
Day 2 — Cape Town
Visit Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden with an expert guide on a tour exclusively designed for our groups – the garden has been named one of the top gardens in the world by National Geographic Traveler magazine. Continue on to explore vibrant Cape Town and Cape Point, with a visit to the penguins at Boulders Beach. (B)
Day 3 — Cape Town
Enjoy a day of leisure and choose from a variety of optional activities, including Table Mountain or a Stellenbosch wine tour. (B)
Day 4 — Cape Town/Johannesburg
Fly to Johannesburg and transfer to the hotel. Meet your CEO and enjoy a traditional South African “braai” (barbecue) welcome dinner in the evening. (B,D)
Day 5 — Johannesburg/Kruger National Park
Enjoy a full day scenic drive along the famed Panorama Route with stops at Blyde River Canyon, Bourke's Luck Potholes, and God's Window. Continue to our tented camp located just outside Kruger National Park and this evening enjoy a delicious South African dinner on the deck or in the boma. (B,D)
Day 6 — Kruger National Park
Enjoy a morning wildlife safari drive through Kruger National Park in an open vehicle. Take in views of the abundant wildlife including elephants, lions and giraffe. Afterwards, opt to take an afternoon safari drive, wildlife bush walk, or relax on the deck with views of the watering hole - a popular spot for animals to visit. (B)
Day 7 — Kruger National Park/Karongwe Private Game Reserve
Continue on to a private nature reserve in the Greater Kruger area. This afternoon, take in a lecture with a researcher from the Endangered Wildlife Trust’s Cheetah Metapopulation Project who will share information about their efforts to protect cheetahs and other carnivores. This National Geographic-sponsored project is part of the Big Cats Initiative. After, the researcher will join us on our evening game drive.
Day 8 — Karongwe Private Game Reserve
Enjoy early morning and afternoon safari drives with our local guides, searching for buffaloes, elephants, leopards, lions, and rhinos – Africa's famed Big Five. In our down time, relax at the camp, take a walk around the grounds or enjoy a cool drink on the deck. (B,L,D)
Days 9 & 10 — Karongwe Private Game Reserve/Johannesburg/Victoria Falls
After one last safari game drive, head back to the city. In the evening, enjoy dinner at our local guest house. Fly to Zimbabwe the next day. Gain insight into what life’s like in Africa with a walk through a local market and dinner at a family homestead. Meet the family, learn their history, and share stories as you help prepare a traditional Zimbabwean dinner. (B,D)
Days 11 & 12 — Victoria Falls
Enjoy a morning tour of the beautiful Victoria Falls, then the rest of the day is free to explore the area. Take part in a river safari, cultural tours, whitewater rafting, canoeing, or a helicopter ride over the falls. Spend the next day exploring your beautiful surroundings. Opt to visit Victoria Falls, go whitewater rafting, or take a helicopter flight over the falls. (B)
Day 13 — Victoria Falls/Hwange National Park
Enjoy free time in the morning and opt to visit the falls. Later, visit the Painted Dog (Wild Dog) conservancy and meet with a conservationist to learn about the work being done to rehabilitate injured animals as a result of poaching. After, travel to Hwange, Zimbabwe's largest national park and enjoy a safari drive on the lodge concession, in search of wildlife. This evening, arrive at the lodge, located just outside the park entrance and enjoy dinner.
Days 14, 15, & 16 — Hwange National Park/Chobe National Park
Take a full day wildlife safari drive in the park which is home to large elephant herds, lions and the rare African wild dog. This evening, relax on the sun deck with a cool drink, keeping an eye out for local wildlife who visit the lodge's watering hole. The final morning in Hwange allows for an optional safari drive or walk, before crossing the border into Botswana, and arriving in Kasane, gateway to stunning Chobe National Park. This afternoon, enjoy a boat safari on the Chobe River in search of bathing elephants, hippos and crocodiles. The next morning, continue our wildlife viewing with a safari drive along the banks of the Chobe River. In the afternoon, opt to take a photography river safari on a specialized photography boat. (B)
Day 17 — Kasane/Okavango Delta
Catch a flight into the “Panhandle” area of the Okavango Delta and check into the remote camp in the wilderness. Enjoy lunch before taking a walk to the research camps of the National Geographic funded Okavango Wilderness Project. Meet with someone from the research team and learn about their work and projects in the area. (B,L,D)
Days 18 & 19 — Okavango Delta
Explore the stunning Delta Panhandle with expert local guides to enjoy wildlife viewing from mokoros, African dugout canoes, and on bush walks; also visit a fish monitoring station and a local village. This evening, we will enjoy a unique stay in a bush camp on one of the remote Islands within the Delta. Here we enjoy a 3 course meal around a roaring camp fire, sitting back and listening to the night calls of the Delta wildlife. The next morning, depart from our island camp and continue wildlife viewing on foot and by mokoro with our expert local guides. Return to the main camp later this afternoon and opt to relax or have a swim. This evening enjoy the deck overlooking the lagoon with hidden seating areas and a fire pit, perfect for stargazing. (B,L,D)
Day 20 — Okavango Delta/Maun
Transfer to the frontier town of Maun and enjoy an evening of culture and traditional foods with celebrated author Bonty Botumile and the Thari-E-Ntsho Storytellers. This local enterprise is dedicated to preserving Botswana’s heritage and providing youth with employment opportunities in the arts. Option to take a scenic flight over the delta. (B,D)
Day 21 — Maun
Depart at any time. (B)
Our newest line of trips, offered in partnership with G Adventures, blends fun, hands-on exploration, meaningful encounters with people and cultures, and more free time and choices—with the structure and security of traveling in a small group.
Travelers should be in good health and comfortable walking or standing for extended periods of time. Daily activities may include city walking tours, visits to sites, game drives, or easy hikes, with options for more physical activities such as hiking, kayaking, snorkeling and biking.
Click here for a description of all activity levels.
Contact Us: 1-800-281-2354
Call to speak with a specialist about this trip.
All trip prices are per person based on double occupancy. If you're traveling on your own, we'll pair you up with a roommate of the same gender so that you can pay the same rate as other travelers. Prices are subject to change without notice and do not include airfare. All prices and fares are quoted in U.S. dollars.
My Own Room
During your trip, sometimes it's just more convenient and comfortable to have your own room. That's why we offer the "My Own Room" option - a single room all to yourself.
Arrival transfer, transport
between destinations and to/from included
activities, and activities as listed in the itinerary.
Optional activities are at an
Accommodations Comfortable, mid-range hotels (9 nights), comfortable safari tents (2 nights), comfortable tents or chalets (2 nights), bush camp in the Okavango Delta (1 night)
Meals Included 19 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 12 dinners. Allow an additional $430–560 for meals
You can do whatever you wish during your free time on tour, but if you're in need of suggestions, we've got them. Details about any optional experiences for this trip will be available during the booking process. Please note, these are at an additional cost.
More Trip Details
Click below to view additional about this itinerary including all available optional activities on our partner's site.