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KwaZulu Natal Holidays Tours South Africa Battlefields Durban Safari

South Africa: Kruger + Zulu Battlefields + Berg (self drive)


SCQ12M
12 NIGHTS
FROM £2,380
Per person sharing
International flights + car hire quoted separately
This comprehesive self drive holiday in South Africa explores the wildlife of the Kruger Park, enjoying a lodge experience with 4x4 game drives, before continuing to the historic Zulu battlefields at Isandlwana & Rorkes Drift. Complete your holiday walking or relaxing in the dramatic Drakensberg Mountains, a World Heritage Site with many Bushman paintings. All battlefield tours & game drives included.
Self Drive Holiday South Africa Kruger Zulu Battlefields Rorkes Drift
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Self Drive Holiday, South Africa
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Blyde River Canyon
• 
Kruger National Park
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Big-5 Game Viewing
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Zulu Battlefields
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Isandlwana
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Rorkes Drift
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Drakensberg Mountains
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Walking Trails
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Bushman Painting
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Self Drive Holiday, South Africa
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Blyde River Canyon
• 
Kruger National Park
• 
Big-5 Game Viewing
• 
Zulu Battlefields
• 
Isandlwana
• 
Rorkes Drift
• 
Drakensberg Mountains
• 
Walking Trails
• 
Bushman Painting
Day 1
Arrive Mpumalanga Airport, collect your hire car and drive to your hotel on the scenic Panorama Route.
  
Check into your hotel in this beautiful region.
Day 2
Today we recommend you explore the splendour of the Drakensberg Panorama Route and drive through the green Blyde River Canyon, the third largest in the world.
 
Enjoy wonderful views from Graskop Gorge Lift and God's Window, view the Three Rondavels and several lovely waterfalls. Also visit the unusual Bourkes Luck Pot Holes - cylindrical holes formed from the swirling waters of the Blyde and Treur Rivers.        
Day 3
Today drive to your game lodge situated in the world famous Kruger National Park.
 
After checking in to your lodge, enjoy your first thrilling game drive in an open-top vehicle accompanied by a lodge ranger. Game viewing opportunities should present themselves almost immediately and hopefully you will see several species of antelope, zebra, wildebeest and maybe even giraffe today - as well as several of the Big Five - before dining under the stars in the atmosphere that only the African bushveld can provide!
Days 4 To 5
Rise at dawn to take advantage of the best game viewing conditions of the day, as you enjoy an open-top game viewing drive with a lodge ranger in the world famous Kruger National Park.
 
Explore some of this vast game sanctuary that is the size of Wales, offering magnificent game viewing opportunities and the highest concentration of lion in the whole of Africa. Hope to see several of the Big Five today - lion, elephant, buffalo, leopard and rhino - as well as many other species before returning to your lodge for breakfast.
 
The rest of the morning is free to relax by the swimming pool or enjoy bird watching at the lodge, before setting out again in the late afternoon for another game drive. With nearly 150 different species of mammals and over 100 species of reptiles in the Kruger National Park, you can hope to see cheetah, giraffe, hippo, kudu, crocodiles, sable antelope, waterbuck, warthogs, baboons, wild dogs and many other interesting animals. With over 500 different bird species including eagles, kingfishers, vultures and storks, outstanding bird watching is also guaranteed.
  
After a beautiful African sunset, enjoy the balmy evening and pristine stars of the Milky Way as you have never seen them before – as well as the spectacular Southern Cross.
  
Children < 6 are not allowed on open top game drives
Day 6
Enjoy some final early morning game viewing in the Kruger National Park before driving 4-hours through the mountains and farmlands of the Eastern Transvaal towards the Zulu Battlefields.
 
Check into your Ermelo hotel for overnight.
Day 7
Continue 4-hours through rural Zululand to the remote battlefields at Isandlwana.
 
Check in to your Zulu Battlefields hotel and enjoy dinner whilst absorbing some of the fascinating history of this great conflict between Britain and the proud Zulu Kingdom.
Day 8
This morning join a full day tour arranged by your lodge to the poignant Zulu Battlefields.
 
Your guide will recount the events leading up to the fateful battle of Isandlwana, where in 1879 the mighty British army suffered one of the most humiliating defeats in its history following the controversial invasion of Zululand. See for yourself the events portrayed so passionately in the film Zulu Dawn, as the regiment was wiped out almost to a man by 20,000 Zulu warriors.
 
After returning to your lodge for lunch, in the afternoon we visit the famous mission station at Rorkes Drift where later that day a handful of British soldiers (outnumbered 30-to-1) fought off over 4,000 Zulu warriors for almost 12 hours. This battle - unforgettably brought to life by Michael Caine in the film Zulu -  saw 11 Victoria Crosses awarded, which is more than in any other engagement in the history of the British Empire.
 
Recommended Reading:
The Day of the Dead Moon - David Rattray
Brave Men’s Blood – Ian Knight
Day 9
Today leave early and drive 4-hours to the spectacular uKhahlamba Drakensberg Mountains.
 
Along the way you can stop at Dundee to visit Talana Hill battlefield and museum, where the first battle of the South African War of 1899 took place and where khaki was worn for the first time. Continue via Ladysmith which was besieged for 118 days and where there is a small Siege Museum (open on weekdays & Saturday am). On Christmas Day, the Boers fired a carrier shell without a fuse into the town containing a Christmas pudding, two Union Flags and the message "Compliments of the Season". This shell is still kept in the museum.
 
Time permitting, youcan also detour to visit Spion Kop, where one of the bloodiest battles took place in efforts to relieve Ladysmith. Visit the mass graves atop Spion Kop Hill and see for yourself how poor military decisions affected the outcome of this battle (pay all entrance fees locally).
 
Then drive to the dramatic Drakensberg Mountains. Known locally as the Barrier of Spears the dramatic Drakensberg Mountains forms the backbone of Southern Africa, running all the way down from the Great Rift Valley. If staying in the Cathedral Peak area, we suggest making a short stop at Didima Bushman rock art interpretative centre, before checking into your mountain resort in this area of unspoilt natural beauty.
 
Recommended Reading:
Boer War – Thomas Pakenham
Day 10
At leisure to relax in the Drakensberg Mountains and enjoy the facilities of your resort, with superlative scenery and fresh mountain air making it ideal for walking holidays at any level of fitness. Your hotel will organise guided walks each day – typically one short walk and one long walk, or a walk to a Bushman painting.
  
Your hotel has a swimming pool and offers many activities in or near the resort including golf, horse riding in the mountains, fly fishing, tennis, lawn bowls, badminton, mountain biking, table tennis, darts and pool. The mountains also offer an outstanding location for bird watching – particularly raptors, but also sunbirds, waxbills and the numerous other species found in the grasslands, riverine scrub and natural forests.
Day 11
This morning enjoy the beauty of the Natal Midlands on your 3-hour drive to your hotel on the Durban North Coast, renowned for its wonderful beaches and warm holiday weather.
 
Stop at craft shops along the Midlands Meander near Howick, before continuing to the Durban North Coast. Check into your hotel and relax in your lush sub-tropical surroundings on the shores of the warm Indian Ocean.
Day 12
Relax on the warm golden beaches of the Durban North Coast.
 
Many optional activities are available such as a marine cruise to search for dolphins, turtles, sharks, whales (in season) and other fascinating sea life. Championship golf, horse riding and deep sea game fishing are also available.
Day 13
Drive to Durban Airport for your flight home.
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