HOME





OFFERS
TRAVEL BLOG
ABOUT US
ENQUIRE
BROCHURE
CONTACT US
PRIVACY & COOKIES
Kruger National Park Safari Holidays Tours South Africa Big Five Guides

Sterkfontein Caves + Mapungubwe + Kruger (self drive)


SCY16J
16 NIGHTS
FROM £2,196
Per person sharing
International flights + car hire quoted separately
This self-drive holiday explores the archeological treasures of South Africa. Starting in Johannesburg, visit the Sterkfontein Caves & Maropeng Cradle of Humankind;  Makapans Caves & Mapungubwe archaelogical sites on the banks of the Limpopo River, with its baobab trees. Continue to the wildlife of the famous Kruger National Park, before relaxing on the beautiful Drakensberg Panorama Route.
Sterkfontein Caves Mapungubwe Archaelogical Sites South Africa Kruger
• 
Johannesburg, South Africa
• 
Apartheid Museum & Soweto
• 
Sterkfontein Caves
• 
Maropeng Centre
• 
Makapans Caves
• 
Mapungubwe Archaelogical Sites
• 
Golden Rhino
• 
Tzaneen
• 
Kruger Park - Letaba
• 
Blyde River Canyon
• 
Johannesburg, South Africa
• 
Apartheid Museum & Soweto
• 
Sterkfontein Caves
• 
Maropeng Centre
• 
Makapans Caves
• 
Mapungubwe Archaelogical Sites
• 
Golden Rhino
• 
Tzaneen
• 
Kruger Park - Letaba
• 
Blyde River Canyon
Day 1
You will be met at Johannesburg Airport and transferred to your hotel in this thriving city.
    
Check in and relax under warm blue South African skies in the city of gold.
Day 2
Today we recommend an optional full day Johannesburg tour - starting with a visit to the Apartheid Museum, a living memorial to racial segregation.
 
We continue to the sprawling township of Soweto for lunch (own account). Here we visit the Hector Pieterson Museum and drive past the original home of Nelson Mandela in Vilikazi Street, with option of visiting this small museum (entrance fee for own account), before returning to Johannesburg in the late afternoon.
 
Note: Tour departs on a Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday & Sunday only (min 2).
Day 3
This morning take delivery of your hire car and drive 1-hour from Johannesburg, travelling westwards to Maropeng.
 
On arrival check into your hotel in the Cradle of Humankind.
Day 4
Spend today exploring some of South Africa’s greatest archaeological treasures situated in the Cradle of Humankind (pay all entrance fees locally).
 
We suggest you start with a visit to the Sterkontein Caves, a World Heritage site dating back billions of years. Dr Broom found one of the first ape-men in these caves, which have since yielded many incredible archaeological treasures. After a tour of the caves, visit the Maropeng Visitors Centre.
 
You can also visit the Wonder Cave at nearby Kromdraai. With an area of 46,000 square feet (4274 sq.m), it is the third largest cave in South Africa and is believed to be about 2.2 billion years old.
 
Note: You will need to squat or crawl through two short sections of the Sterkfontein Caves, so the caves are not suitable for anyone who suffers from claustrophobia or has mobility issues.
Day 5
Today drive 3.5-hours from Maropeng to the small town of Mokopane in the northern Limpopo Province.
 
Check into this town that was origianally established by the Boer Voortrekkers and called Vredenburg, before being renamed Potgietersrust in honour of a slain Voortrekker leader, Piet Potgieter. Today it is now called Mokopane.
Day 6
Today drive 20-minutes northeast of Mokopane to visit Makapan’s Caves (or Makapansgat) - one of the least-visited World Heritage sites in South Africa.
 
Despite their relative obscurity, Makapan’s Caves boast very impressive fossils that are over two million years old. These include remains of Homo sapiens and hominin predecessors such as Australopithecus africanus, as well as bone and stone tools and other artefacts. The oldest animal fossils that have been found here are about 3 million years old.
 
Note: To visit the caves, you first need to visit Mokopane Game Breeding Centre to buy a ticket (in cash)and ensure a compulsory guide is available to escort you. You need to take your receipt with you - so as these two places are 12 miles (20 km) apart, do not arrive without visiting the Game Breeding Centre first.
Day 7
At leisure to explore more of the area surrounding Mokopane, or relax at your lodge.
Day 8
Today drive 3-hours from Mokopane, travelling through Polokwane to Mapungubwe and enjoying the stark beauty of the far northern Limpopo Province.
 
Mapungubwe is situated at the confluence of the Limpopo and Shashe Rivers, where three countries meet – South Africa, Botswana and Zimbabwe. Check into your lodge in baobab country.
 
Day 9
We recommend you start your visit with a guided tour of the Mapungubwe World Heritage Site.
 
Over a thousand years ago Mapungubwe Hill (“The Place of Jackals”) was the centre of the largest kingdom in Southern Africa, populated by the Shona people and forerunner of the Great Zimbabwe civilisation. Its highly sophisticated people had a well-developed class system and traded gold, ivory, copper and exotic beads with China, India & Egypt. A small gold foil rhinoceros was found in a royal grave at this important archaeological site, as well as other artefacts from this advanced African civilisation, which flourished before colonisation.
  
Afterwards there is the option of visiting Mapungubwe National Park to view game; tracking endangered wild dogs at Venetia Game Reserve; or walking to view ancient Bushman rock paintings.
Day 10
Today drive 4-hours from Mapungubwe to the regional capital of Polokwane, continuing through the beautiful Magoebaskloof to the fertile farmlands and tea plantations of Tzaneen.
 
Here you can visit the Vervet Monkey Foundation, which cares for over 600 vervet monkeys, before checking into your hotel (pay entrance fee locally).
Day 11
Drive 3-hours from Tzaneen into the world famous Kruger National Park. Game viewing opportunities should present themselves almost immediately and hopefully see several species of antelope, zebra, wildebeest and maybe even giraffe before you reach your rest camp.
 
Don’t miss the Masorini Iron Age Site that can be found on a prominent hillside about 7.5-miles (12 km) from the Phalaborwa Gate.
  
The Kruger National Park offers a choice of seven rest camps, each situated in a different section of the park with its own unique flora and fauna - Skukuza, Letaba, Olifants, Lower Sabie, Pretoriuskop, Satara and Berg-en-Dal. Accommodation is in simple but comfortable thatched game park bungalows, with each camp having a restaurant and a small shop. Check in, settle in and relax in the atmosphere that only the African bushveld can provide (park fees payable locally on entrance).
 
Note: You will need your passport to enter the Kruger National Park.
Days 12 To 13
Today is devoted to self drive game viewing in the Kruger National Park. We recommend setting off early each morning as the camp gates open (04h30 to 06h00 depending on the season), to take advantage of the best game viewing conditions of the day.
   
Explore the famous Kruger National Park, which offer 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 rest camp for breakfast (or buy provisions at camp and cook breakfast at a picnic spot).
 
The rest of the morning is free to relax by the swimming pool or enjoy bird watching at camp, before setting out again at the time of your choice (usually 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.
Day 14
After some final game viewing in the Kruger National Park, explore the splendour of the scenic Drakensberg Panorama Route as you drive 2-hours through the green Blyde River Canyon, the third largest in the world.
  
Enjoy wonderful views from Graskop Gorge Lift and God's Window, view several lovely waterfalls and visit the unusual Bourkes Luck Pot Holes - cylindrical holes formed from the swirling waters of the Blyde and Treur Rivers.
 
Afterwards check into your hotel in this beautiful area.
Days 15 To 16
At leisure to relax on the beautiful Panorama Route.
 
You can tour the Blyde River Canyon, visit a Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre or the Chimpanzee Sanctuary near Nelspruit. Other optional activities include a treetop canopy tour, championship golf, horse riding, fly fishing, white water rafting or a hot air balloon ride. Or simply relax at your lodge and enjoy the wonderful bird life.
Day 17
Drive 4-hours to Johannesburg Airport for your flight home.
Contact us
Order a brochure
Feedback