“Follow a trail from Cape Town to Victoria Falls via the fertile landscapes and game reserves of Namibia and you'll soon be well-versed in the charms of southern Africa.”
Cape Town | Table Mountain | local vineyard tour | Olifants River Valley | Orange River | Fish River Canyon | Sesriem | Sossusvlei sand dunes | Swakopmund | Twyfelfontein | Bushman paintings | game viewing in Etosha National Park | Okavango Delta Panhandle | Mokoro on the Okavango | Game drive and boat ride in Chobe National Park | Victoria Falls | Livingstone | Optional activities in Swakopmund, include: quad biking, sand boarding and scenic flights over the desert |
Hello. If you'd like to chat about this holiday or need help finding one we're very happy to help. Rosy & team.
Although communal camping gear is provided you will need your own sleeping bag which can be bought from home or purchased in Cape Town.
Small group. Average size 12. Minimum age 18.
Leisurely/Moderate. Some long drives and outdoor activities.
15 nights campsites (clean communal facilities, large 2 person igloo tents, thick mattresses, folding stools), 4 nights lodges/guesthouses.
Accommodation, transport, listed activities and tour leader.
All brks, 10 lunches, 12 dinners.
Single room supps available.
Small group holiday
Small group travel is not large group travel scaled down. It is modelled on independent travel – but with the advantage of a group leader to take care of the itinerary, accommodation and tickets, and dealing with the language. It’s easy to tick off the big sights independently – but finding those one-off experiences, local festivals, travelling markets and secret viewpoints is almost impossible for someone without the insider knowledge gained from years in the field. If you’re heading off on a gap year your, perhaps – but for those with a two-week holiday, a small group tour will save valuable planning time.
The leaders are not guides – they’re not there to shepherd you around. Instead, they’ll let you know which local restaurant serves great value food – without running the risk of travellers’ tummy. They’ll allow you to avoid hour-long queues at train stations and attractions.
We like to think of small group travel as the Goldilocks option. It is independent travel without the fuss, worry and bunk beds – and organised travel without the coaches. And it’s cheaper than a tailor made tour. It’s sits somewhere in the middle – and we think it’s just about right.
What are the main benefits?
Have big, life-enriching experiences that would be impossible to organise without lots of time and insider knowledge.
Make the most of your holiday time by letting someone else do the hard work and boring logistics!
Peace of mind
Small group tours take care of the security aspects – and provide a safety net should anything unexpected happen.
Who is it ideal for?
Travellers who are short of time
If you don’t have three months to spend exploring, small groups trips let you cover more ground in less time. Your days are not spent queuing for tickets or finding hotels – so you can squeeze more into your holiday.
Solo travellers who’d like company
Likeminded travel companions plus peace of mind for those travelling alone. Single supplements are usually available – providing privacy if you want it.
Less confident travellers
Stray from the tourist trail without worrying about getting lost, and meet local people without dealing with the language barrier.
“I won’t get any privacy!”
Couples and friends have private rooms, and you can choose to eat alone or not. Single supplements give solo travellers their own room.
“There won’t be any free time”
Free mornings or afternoons let you explore on your own, or just relax.
“The accommodation will be basic” Trips are as high or low end as you like. Though off the beaten track destinations won’t have luxury hotels, this is all part of the adventure.
“I won’t like the other travellers!”
Tour operators try to create groups with a similar demographic – age, families, activity levels... Chances are, you’ll even make new friends.
“Will we be following an umbrella?”
Meet a group Leader
Name: Valerie Parkinson
Story: The first British woman to climb Manaslu, Valerie climbed Everest for her 50th birthday. She’s spent fourteen Christmas Days trekking to Everest Base Camp, and is involved insetting up Responsible Tourism initiatives in the Himalayas.
Meet a local guide
Name: Roshan Fernando
Story: Roshan has led over 130 trips – he adores showing travellers around Sri Lanka. He won the company Leader Award in 2010, but his career highlight was working on their Tsunami Project – which earned him a responsible tourism award.
Responsible tourism: Cape Town to Victoria Falls holiday in South Africa
Accommodation & Meals: Most nights on this trip will be spent in fully service camps, whilst the remainder will be in guesthouses and small hotels. By mainly camping, we reduce our energy consumption and negative effect on the environment. These sites, often being based within or nearby National Parks, are extremely conscious of litter disposal and try to use gas fires instead of limited wood resources. All breakfasts, 10 lunches and 12 dinners are provided and your local guide and chef will use fresh, locally sourced ingredients where possible. We can arrange for meals out together or recommend restaurants nearby as a means of encouraging local investment and celebration of African cuisine.
Wildlife: We do a number of activities focused on wildlife and we actively ensure that our guides are well informed and able to convey environmental knowledge to clients. Etosha National Park, for example, is home to a great variety and number of game. There are waterholes next to the excellent campsites, and it is not uncommon for us to spend all night watching a gala performance of animals: wildebeest, zebra, impala, springbok, kudu, elephant, giraffe, lion and even rhino are all common sights. Our entrance fees to Etosha and other places like this on our itinerary, are a vital contribution to park maintenance, conservation activities, community projects, and employment of local people.
UK Office: It all starts at home so we have first worked at reducing our carbon footprint in our UK Offices. Through energy conservation measures and recycling policies, we are proud to be actively reducing the waste produced and our impact on the environment. We support various projects all over the world to try and give something back to the places we visit.
Local Craft & Culture: Throughout the tour, there are opportunities to appreciate Southern African culture and to purchase traditional, handmade crafts. One of the best places to do this might be at the end of the tour when we visit the big craft centre at the entrance to Victoria Falls, or at the Twyfelfontein engravings. Here a variety of shop owners come to sell their painted wooden trinkets, instruments and jewellery etc. We encourage clients to support local businesses like this as a way of boosting the economy of local communities. We are also aware that some items sold are made with illegal or environmentally damaging products and so leaders are careful to give a warning in a briefing about things like ivory and large items made from local hardwood.
Group Size: This small group tour has a maximum of 16 participants, meaning that we have a low impact on the environments and communities we visit and are able to ensure that we do not disrupt or lead to the displacement of local people. The small number also allows us to stay in unique, family-run hotels that cannot benefit from coach tours and other mass tourism due to their limited sizes.
Reviews of Cape Town to Victoria Falls holiday in South Africa
You can trust Responsible Travel reviews because, unlike many other schemes, reviews can ONLY be written by people who we have verified have been on the holidays.
I am reborn! Simply the best holiday I have ever been on
Some great stories to tell the grandchildren. Would recommend to a friend
It was OK
A bit disappointing really
Reviewed on 15 Jan 2016 by Wendy Pountain
1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?
For me the National Parks were always going to be the highlight and they didn't disappoint. Etosha and Chobe are so different from each other but both have lots of interesting animals.
We saw a cheetah family with a fresh kill, several black rhino, more giraffe and elephants than you could ever hope for and a good number of hippos at Chobe too.
We also had some very dramatic weather in the shape of two major thunderstorms, made all the more exciting/scary by the fact we were camping. Some wonderful sunsets and mostly great campsites.
2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?
Read the trip notes! Take the currency they suggest ie SARand plus USDollars. The guide will help you get the Pula for Botswana so not need to worry about that and you can use SARand in Namibia. Take malaria tabs from Swakopmund onwards, and use a good anti-mossie spray. Take an elastic camping washing line with hooks on the end, and a head torch.
3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?
Yes we supported local bars and the food we ate was sourced locally from each place. Most of the bigger sites had good recycling systems and were cleaned. The trips and transport were provided by local people.
4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?
It was good (excellent bar the stomach bug and the window of the bus breaking), well organised - an experience!