Mozambique & Zimbabwe Explorer (South)

from $1980/per person

Safari to view the Big Five in Hwange and Kruger National Parks. Marvel at the ancient ruins in Zimbabwe before walking around Matobo National Park to see the Rhinos. Take a scenic road along the coast towards Mozambique. Recharge on the welcoming beaches and explore the rich marine life of the Indian Ocean. Get a taste of the marvellous nature both on land and under the sea on this 14-day adventure!

Duration
14 Day
Destination(s)
Africa
Starts in / Ends in
Victoria Falls / Pretoria
Departs on
Thursdays
Hotel Rating
Camping
5-15 Pax

Sight Visited

  • Bandula Area
    Bandula Area

  • Bilene
    Bilene

  • Bulawayo
    Bulawayo

  • Hazyview
    Hazyview

  • Inhambane
    Inhambane

  • Kruger National Park
    Kruger National Park

  • Livingstone
    Livingstone

  • Masvingo
    Masvingo

  • Matobo National Park
    Matobo National Park

  • Pretoria
    Pretoria

  • Victoria Falls
    Victoria Falls

  • Vilanculos
    Vilanculos

ITINERARY

1
Day 1: Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
This morning we enjoy the spectacular Victoria Falls themselves and the mighty Zambezi River. Please be ready to get wet when you visit – the spray from the Falls can be seen from up to 20 miles away – hence the local name Mosi oa Tunya (Smoke That Thunders) and many people find they get thoroughly soaked on their visit! After our visit time is at leisure – try one of the optional activities or visit the local markets or old colonial Victoria Falls Hotel that provides an in-depth historical insight, including information on the discovery of the Falls; or explore the colonial town on foot and visit the local trading markets. From bungee jumping to admiring the view, Victoria Falls is an enduring sight that has captured the imagination of visitors for generations. N.B: For the sake of practicality, meals in Victoria Falls area are at your own discretion. This allows you to take on activities (some of which include lunch) without having to head back with the group at mealtimes. The town of cafés and restaurants offer a good selection of reasonably priced meals and snacks (allow US$15-$30 per meal). Relax and enjoy at your own leisure.
  • Accommodation: Vic Falls Rest Camp - Camping in twin share tents with shared facilities
  • Meals included No
  • WIFI: Yes
  • Optional Activities: Bungee Jumping US$160, Gorge Swing US$95, Helicopter Flights from US$150 White water rafting US$120, Full day canoe US$145, Game walk US$75, Jet boating US$120, Birding ½ day US$75, Bike tour – 3 hours US$65, Sunset Cruise US$65
2
Day 2: Victoria Falls – Hwange National Park
Today we head for the world-famous Hwange National Park. This is Zimbabwe’s largest and best-known park and was (in the early 19th century) the royal hunting grounds of the Ndebele warrior-king Mzilikazi.  In 1929 it was set aside as a National Park for the benefit of all Zimbabwe’s peoples. The park covers an area of over 14,600 sq kms and is particularly known for its elephant but contains over 100 mammal species including Africa’s “Big 5" (leopard, lion, elephant, rhino and buffalo), as well as giraffe, cheetah, gemsbok and the brown hyena and abundant bird species. Hwange is also known for its population of the Wild (Painted) Dog. Late in the day we take a locally guided open vehicle game drive and hope to glimpse some of the wildlife in the park before returning to camp for overnight.
  • Accommodation: Hwange Rest Camp or similar Camping in twin share tents with shared facilities
  • Meals included Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • WIFI: No
  • Optional Activities: No
3
Day 3: Hwange National Park – Bulawayo
Departing Hwange, we drive south to Bulawayo, Zimbabwe’s second city. The afternoon is at leisure. Bulawayo is a pleasant city with broad tree-lined avenues and wide-open spaces. There is a fascinating National History Museum, which recounts much of Zimbabwe’s traditional and colonial past, and near the Old Town Hall there is a lively curio market where you can test your bartering skills. A wide range of handicrafts and artwork are on display here most made locally by skilful craftsmen and women.
  • Accommodation: Burkes Paradise – Camping in twin share tents with shared facilities
  • Meals included Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • WIFI: Yes
  • Optional Activities: No
4
Day 4: Bulawayo – Matobo National Park - Bulawayo
We explore the Matobo National Park on our half day guided tour. The wind-sculptured Matobo Hills are the site of numerous Bushman paintings and the area holds a special cultural and spiritual importance to the indigenous people. The reserve also has a large concentration of the Black and White Rhino and providing it’s safe to do so our guides will lead us on foot to search for these magnificent animals. Approaching these massive beasts is a heart racing, breath-taking and memorable experience. At such times it may be comforting to remember that rhinos are herbivores. The park also has a dense population of leopard and black eagle and we hope to catch sight of either (or both) of these creatures. We also keep a look out for giraffe, zebra, ostrich and a variety of antelope and buck species. Note: There is an option to upgrade to a full day Matobo tour to include various historical sites. The price is listed in the optional excursions and can be arranged with your crew on the day.
  • Accommodation: Burkes Paradise – Camping in twin share tents with shared facilities
  • Meals included Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • WIFI: Yes
  • Optional Activities: Upgrade to full day tour including historical tour and village tour US$45
5
Day 5: Bulawayo – Great Zimbabwe National Monument, Masvingo
Leaving Bulawayo, we cross towards the east of the country to the small town of Masvingo. Nearby is one of the most important archaeological sites in Southern Africa: the Great Zimbabwe National Monument. Dating back to 1200AD this place was once the home to an indigenous population of some 10,000 people. A UNESCO World Heritage Site the area holds special significance to the country which took its name. Legend says this was the city where the Queen of Sheeba resided and archaeological finds uncovered gold, coins and porcelain from as far afield as Persia and China, highlighting the importance of the city as a trading post. We camp nearby for easy access and ample time to explore the ruins at leisure and with a local guide who will give you basic information of the area. If you have the energy there is the opportunity to trek to the top of the Hill Enclosure to enjoy a wondrous sunset.
  • Accommodation: Norma Jean’s - Camping twin share dome tents with shared facilities
  • Meals included Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • WIFI: No
  • Optional Activities: No
6
Day 6: Mazvingo - Bandula Area, Mozambique
Today, we leave early and stop off in Mutare and if time allows stop at the spectacular Birchenough Bridge (named after Sir Henry Birchenough). The bridge spans the Save River on its 400 km journey through Zimbabwe and Mozambique and is one of many scenic features of eastern Zimbabwe. Once we have stocked up on supplies we make our way to the border point to leave Zimbabwe and enter Mozambique. NB: Border formalities entering Mozambique can be time consuming and we may be held here for several hours while the paperwork is completed. Your patience at such times is greatly appreciated. We find the best way to proceed is to let officials work at their own pace and wait patiently. Your tour leader will do most of the work, but he/she will be grateful for your understanding if things seem to be taking longer than they should. Once formalities are complete we make our way to the Bandula area near the Chicamba Dam where our campsite is located within a 550-hectare conservancy. Most people notice immediate differences upon entering Mozambique. Travelling is generally slower and road conditions more demanding. Campsites are not as well appointed. Towns and shops may have fewer goods or less variety. While this can sometimes be frustrating many people find after a few days they find this one of the more appealing and attractive aspects of their overland tour. Overlanding is an adventurous type of travel and these are ‘unconventional’ holidays. We are sure you will enjoy Mozambique but do try to warn you not to expect things to be the same as elsewhere in Africa.
  • Accommodation: Casa Msika or similar – Camping in twin share tents with shared facilities
  • Meals included Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • WIFI: Yes
  • Optional Activities: No
7
Day 7: Bandula – Vilanculos area
This morning, we leave early and make our way to the spectacular Indian Ocean coast. We arrive at Vilankulo (or Vilanculos), the Gateway to the Bazaruto Archipelago. Named after a local tribal chief Gamala Vilankulo Mukoke, the town itself is only 5km long yet is a hive of activity, has a lively atmosphere and friendly people. On arrival, we gather our luggage and snorkels for the following day’s island trip and board our traditional dhow boat to our ‘rustic ‘bush camp. The beach camp is located on a remote stretch of the coast approximately 90 minutes sail from Vilanculos town itself. We arrive in the late afternoon and settle in to our beach camp for the next 2 nights
  • Accommodation: Chigamane Camp or similar – Camping in pre-erected twin share tents with shared facilities
  • Meals included Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • WIFI: No
  • Optional Activities: No
8
Day 8: Vilanculos area
After breakfast we take our dhow boat to Magaruque Island, the third Island in the archipelago and the closest to Vilanculos. Here you can enjoy the island at leisure, snorkelling, swimming, walking or simply enjoy lazing on the pristine beach. A delicious seafood lunch is included in our Dhow Safari.  With its powdery-white beaches, turquoise waters, and superb all-year round climate, Magaruque is perfect to relax, unwind and explore the local marine life. We return to our beach camp in the late afternoon to overnight.
  • Accommodation: Chigamane Camp or similar – Camping in pre-erected twin share tents with shared facilities
  • Meals included Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • WIFI: No
  • Optional Activities: No
9
Day 9: Vilanculos area - Inhambane
We bid our seaside camp farewell and head further down the scenic coast via Inhambane to Tofo where we will spend the next 2 nights. Tofo is a small beach town with lovely open beaches, where the pace of life slows allowing you to relax and soak up the atmosphere. There are many activities on offer such as horse riding, snorkelling and scuba. Whale Sharks and Manta Rays inhabit the coastline all year round but are in larger numbers in the summer months (November to March).  Humpback whales usually arrive around mid-June and are present until mid-October. The natural vegetation of the coastal plain is dune forest, but this has largely been replaced by coconut palms, planted by the Portuguese and local Bitonga people to supply the thriving copra trade. There are some exciting bars and restaurants in the area - sample the local seafood, the area is famous for it - and the local beer (called ‘2M’) or else simply relax and enjoy a good read.  You could also take a trip into Inhambane, the second oldest town in Mozambique to explore the local market.
  • Accommodation: Fatima’s Nest or similar – Camping in twin share tents with shared facilities
  • Meals included Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • WIFI: Yes
  • Optional Activities: No
10
Day 10: Inhambane
Today is a free day at leisure to enjoy the local tropical beaches and the many activities on offer. Nearby Inhambane has a rich history and offers a great opportunity to go out and explore the old city. Climb the ladder at the Cathedral of our lady of Conception Inhambane for fantastic 360-degree views of the surrounds. The local markets are also a highlight with fresh fish, seafood and farm produce on sale. You’ll soon see the mix of Arabic and African cultures that create a vibrant, eclectic style of its own. If the delights of the ocean are your forte, then head out and explore the reefs and colourful marine life found in this warm watery haven.
  • Accommodation: Fatima’s Nest or similar – Camping in twin share tents with shared facilities
  • Meals included Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • WIFI: Yes
  • Optional Activities: Scuba Diving US$70 - US$110, Snorkelling Trips from US$30, Quad Biking US$50
11
Day 11: Inhambane – Praia do Bilene
We leave Tofo and head south to Bilene and our last coastal stop in Mozambique. Bilene, also known as Praia do Bilene and was once called San Marthino is located 180km from Mozambique and famous for the Uembje Lagoon (or San Marthino lake) where you can try out one of the best loved activities in Bilene – snorkelling! Our camp for the evening is located on top of the dunes overlooking the stunning lagoon itself.  It’s here we spend the night lulled by the sound of the ocean and enjoy the fresh breeze as we unwind from our day.
  • Accommodation: Laguna Camp or similar – Camping in twin share tents with shared facilities
  • Meals included Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • WIFI: No
  • Optional Activities: No
12
Day 12: Praia do Bilene - Hazyview – Kruger National Park, South Africa
From Bilene we cross the border into South Africa, where we head for southern Africa’s premier game reserve, ‘Kruger’ and spend the night outside the reserve. Fences between the National Park and surrounding private reserves were removed several years ago to form the Greater Kruger, an area of some 24000 sq km. Wildlife is free to roam the whole enormous area and it has become incredibly diverse in both fauna and flora. From the dwarf mongoose to the ‘Big Five’, almost every major African mammal mammal (148 species) is present. There is also prolific birdlife (over 505 species) and over 330 varieties of trees. This evening we immerse ourselves in the local culture and enjoy Shangaan tribal dancing and singing around an open fire to learn more about these fascinating people.
  • Accommodation: Hotel Numbi – Camping in twin share tents with shared facilities
  • Meals included Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • WIFI: No
  • Optional Activities: No
13
Day 13: Hazyview – Kruger National Park
Waking early, we board our 4x4 game viewing vehicles with a resident guide for an intense but rewarding day in Kruger National Park. The impressive atmosphere of the park enables you to see why it is held in such high esteem amongst visitors from all over the world. We game drive in the morning and afternoon in search for the abundance of wildlife including the ‘Big 5’ – Rhino, elephant, buffalo, leopard and lion together with a high density of other mammals and diverse bird species such as eagles, hornbills, vultures and bee eaters. We break during the middle of the day to enjoy the peace of the rest camp and wait out the hottest part of the day (when wildlife is usually less active). We then continue our game drive through the park exiting in the late afternoon and continue to our accommodation for the night.
  • Accommodation: Hotel Numbi – Camping in twin share tents with shared facilities
  • Meals included Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  • WIFI: No
  • Optional Activities: Night game drive US$75
14
Day 14: Hazyview - Greater Kruger - Pretoria
We leave the Kruger behind and make our way to South Africa’s administrative city, Pretoria, where our tour ends late afternoon / early evening on day 14.
  • Accommodation: No
  • Meals included Breakfast
  • WIFI: No
  • Optional Activities: No
Start
Price ($)

The tour price covers the following services:

Meals

13 Breakfasts, 12 Lunches, 12 Dinners

Accommodation

Camping in 2-person dome tents

Transportation

Fully equipped safari vehicle, All road tolls and vehicle taxes, All ground transportation

Crew

Services of two crew

Highlights

Victoria Falls Visit
Hwange National Park, Open Vehicle Game Drive with resident guide*
Matobo National Park, Open Vehicle Game Drive with resident guide*
Bilene and Tofo Beach, Inhambane
Dhow Safari, Vilanculos – Magaruque Island snorkelling
Great Zimbabwe Ruins
Kruger National Park, Open Vehicle Game Drive with resident guide

What is not included in the tour price?

  • Visas
  • Flights
  • Travel insurance
  • Departure taxes
  • Airport transfers
  • Sleeping bag
  • Optional activities
  • Drinks, tips
  • Items of a personal nature

Camping


We use 2-person dome tents with fly sheets, sewn-in groundsheets, zip-up insect screens and foam mattresses. We mainly use campsites, which usually have reasonable wash and shower facilities, electricity points and sometimes even a small shop, bar or swimming pool.

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