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19-Day Desert Tracker Camping Overland Tour from Cape Town

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Highlights
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    Itinerary

    Day 1: Cape Town – Western Cape, South Africa

    Stop At: Highlanders Campsite and Lodge, Trawal Cres, Cape Town, 7579, South Africa
    Our overland safari begins in cosmopolitan Cape Town, overlooked by Table Mountain and bordered by the Atlantic Ocean, one of the world’s most picturesque cities. Before we leave the city, we take a tour of the Cape Flats, at one of Cape Town’s intriguing townships, visiting some of the local people and community projects in the area. The townships illustrate both South Africa’s tumultuous history and its hope for the future which makes for a fascinating visit. From here we head north through South Africa’s Western Cape and through the fruit growing regions of Citrusdal. Our campsite is located near the Olifants River overlooking the stunning Cederberg Mountains. After setting up camp there is an option to sample some of the local wines of the region, properly meet the rest of the group and enjoy our first night under the African sky.
    Duration: 1 day

    Meals included:
    • Lunch
    • Dinner
    Accommodation included: Overnight at Highlanders Camp, Trawal, South Africa

    Day 2: Western Cape – Gariep (Orange) River

    Stop At: Felix Unite Provenance Camp, Plot 423 Noordoewer, Namibia, 9000
    Continuing north, the landscape gradually turns drier and rockier as we head towards the Namibian border crossing at Vioolsdrift. We set up camp tonight on the Namibian side of the Gariep (Orange) River, a stunning backdrop. Our camp provides you with the necessary comforts like hot showers, flush toilets, grassy campsites, swimming pool, bar facilities and the Orange River is safe for swimming! You will be briefed on an optional Orange River canoe safari for later this afternoon or the following morning. The camp by night is showered with stars of the Richtersveld – a truly peaceful and tranquil experience.
    Duration: 1 day

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    • Lunch
    • Dinner
    Accommodation included: Overnight at Felix Unite, Orange River, Namibia

    Day 3: Gariep (Orange) River – Fish River Canyon, Namibia

    Stop At: Fish River Canyon, Ais-Ais Namibia
    This morning we have the opportunity to partake in an optional canoe safari on the river, or simply relax on the water’s edge before making our way to the majestic Fish River Canyon. One of the natural wonders of Africa, the canyon is some 500m deep and over 160km long and often referred to as the second largest canyon in the world. There are plenty of opportunities for keen photographers this afternoon especially at the canyons infamous sharp river bend known as ‘Hells Corner’. A great opportunity to find a quiet spot and marvel at the sheer beauty of the Fish River Canyon.
    Duration: 1 day

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    • Lunch
    • Dinner
    Accommodation included: Overnight at Canyon Roadhouse, Fish River Canyon area, Namibia

    Day 4: Fish River Canyon – Sesriem Area

    Stop At: Namib-Naukluft National Park, C27, Sesriem Namibia
    After a night near the canyon we continue north to the Sesriem Area, the gateway to the Namib Naukluft National Park, containing the world’s oldest desert and highest sand dunes. The Namib-Naukluft National Park contains part of the Namib Desert and the Naukluft mountain range. With an overall area of 49,768 km2 it’s larger than Switzerland and is the second largest game park in Africa and the fourth largest in the world. Here we set up camp for the evening under the starry Namibian sky.
    Duration: 1 day

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    • Lunch
    • Dinner
    Accommodation included: Overnight at Little Sossus Lodge, Sesriem Area, Namibia

    Day 5: Namib Naukluft National Park – Sossus On Foot Camp

    Stop At: Solitaire Desert Farm, Solitaire Village on the C14 road (GPS 23.8874710 16.00464999, 67), Solitaire, Namibia
    This morning we enter the National Park to trek to the top of famous Dune 45. A spectacular sight but be warned, it’s not an easy feat to reach the top as some dunes are over 300m high! After a well-deserved breakfast we continue deeper into the park for a short shuttle ride and nature walk to ‘Dead Vlei’, amidst the giant sand dunes – a real glimpse of Namibia’s untainted natural environment. Bring your camera – the shifting colours of the desert as the sun climbs throughout the mid/late morning offer some brilliant photographic opportunities. Departing from the dunes, we stop off at the smaller Sesriem Canyon where the multiple layers of rock and pebbles make for an interesting insight to what lies beneath the mountains of sand. Thereafter we make our way via Namibia’s smallest town, Solitaire to our camp for the night.
    Duration: 1 day

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    • Lunch
    • Dinner
    Accommodation included: Overnight at Sossus On Foot Desert Camp, Khomas Region, Namibia

    Day 6: Sossus On Foot Camp - Swakopmund

    Stop At: Amanpuri Travellers Lodge, Swakopmund, Namibia
    Leaving our desert camp, we head for the Atlantic coast for the next two nights, crossing over the Tropic of Capricorn, and stopping for a photo opportunity en route. Swakopmund makes for a refreshing change with cooler Atlantic sea air, a taste of civilization and a swathe of exciting things to do and places to explore Be daring and try some desert-based adventure activities – quad biking, sand boarding, skydiving (weather permitting) and more! For those not seeking adventure enjoy what the town has to offer: shopping, restaurants, museums, aquarium, art galleries – or else simply walk along the promenade admiring the ocean, the quaint German-style architecture and indulge in the town’s café culture.

    Duration: 1 day

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    Accommodation included: Overnight at Amanpuri Travellers Lodge, Swakopmund, Namibia

    Day 7: Swakopmund

    Stop At: Amanpuri Travellers Lodge, Swakopmund, Namibia
    Today is a free day to enjoy all this quaint seaside town has to offer - from the many optional activities to the German patisseries, cafés and restaurants.
    Duration: 1 day

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    Accommodation included: Overnight at Amanpuri Travellers Lodge, Swakopmund, Namibia

    Day 8: Swakopmund to Spitzkoppe

    Stop At: Spitzkoppe, Namibia
    Leaving the coast, we turn inland to the beautiful Damaraland region and explore Spitzkoppe where we admire ancient bushman paintings still visible on peculiar rock formations. The giant boulder-like rock formations peak at approx 1800m above sea level and form a spectacular view. Take your time to explore the area and its delightful calmness. Keep an eye on the ever-changing colour of the rock, especially during sunrise and sunset, when they acquire intense red shades. The most impressive rock painting is “Bushman Paradise” and the natural rock bridge is a favourite viewpoint.

    Duration: 1 day

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    • Lunch
    • Dinner
    Accommodation included: Overnight at Spitzkoppe Bush Camp, Namibia

    Day 9: Spitzkoppe to Etosha

    Stop At: Etosha Pan, Etosha National Park Namibia
    From Spitzkoppe we turn north again making our way to Etosha National Park, a vast reserve of over 20,000 sq km surrounding a central salt depression or ‘pan.’ The pan is seasonally full of water, but specially managed waterholes sustain some 114 mammal and 340 bird species. We spend two nights here, usually making camp near a floodlit waterhole. Observers frequently see a range of night visitors including elephant, giraffe, zebra, even lion and hyena, making it one of the most memorable wildlife encounters in Namibia - a truly African experience and a highlight of any trip to Namibia. We have a short afternoon game drive on entering the park and heading to the camp.
    Duration: 1 day

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    • Lunch
    • Dinner
    Accommodation included: Overnight at one of the main camps - Okaukeujo/Halali/Namatoni inside Etosha National Park, Namibia

    Day 10: Etosha National Park

    Stop At: Etosha Pan, Etosha National Park Namibia
    Today, we enjoy a full day game driving in this magnificent animal kingdom - taking in the park’s main characteristic, the salt pan which can be seen from space - in search of elephant, rhino, zebra, giraffes and the numerous grazing animals frequently spotted around the water holes. Despite the dry nature of the terrain, the park sustains a wide variety of bird species including the large Kori Bustard, Secretary Bird and many other seed & insect eaters, as well as birds of prey.
    After a full day game driving, we return to camp, or onto the next camp and enjoy our last evening around the floodlit watering holes, observing natural animal behaviour at its best.

    Duration: 1 day

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    • Lunch
    • Dinner
    Accommodation included: Overnight at one of the main camps - Okaukeujo/Halali/Namatoni inside Etosha National Park, Namibia

    Day 11: Etosha to Windhoek

    Stop At: Urbancamp.net, No 2 Schanzen Street, Windhoek, Namibia
    Heading south, we arrive in Windhoek, the capital of Namibia, which is located in a basin between the Khomas Highland, Auas and Eros Mountains. Windhoek (Windy-corner in English) is home to approximately two hundred thousand people, an extremely small capital by global standards. The city centre is characterized by a proliferation of German style buildings, a lasting reminder of Namibia's early colonial history and atmosphere. Take the opportunity to enjoy a night out at one of the local restaurants.
    Duration: 1 day

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    • Lunch
    Accommodation included: Overnight at Urban camp, Windhoek, Namibia

    Day 12: Windhoek to Ghanzi, Botswana

    Stop At: Ghanzi Trail Blazers. Reception, Ghanzi, Western Botswana/Ghanzi, Botswana, Botswana
    Leaving Windhoek, we travel east into the Kalahari region and cross into Botswana. Our first stop is at the town of Ghanzi. Here, in this midst of (seemingly) barren terrain we meet the San/Bushman and have a guided bush walk for a cultural experience and insight into these ancient people’s way of life. We learn how they work with nature and manage the renewable resources found in their natural surroundings without damaging the fragile balance found in this ecosystem. Something we can all learn from. Your support of this ecotourism venture gives the San/Bushman a sustainable income and helps keep their culture alive.
    Around the campfire at night, you can experience the ancient dance rituals of the San/Bushman. On special occasions this could be a healing or trance dance, which can continue all night, and is an intense spiritual experience for both participants and visitors alike.

    Duration: 1 day

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    • Lunch
    • Dinner
    Accommodation included: Overnight at Ghanzi Trailblazers, Ghanzi, Botswana

    Day 13: Ghanzi to Maun

    Stop At: Sitatunga Camp, Maun, Okavango/Moremi, Botswana, Botswana
    Maun is the fifth largest town in Botswana and is an eclectic mix of modern buildings and native dwellings. Although officially still a village, Maun has developed rapidly from a rural frontier town to a community that has distributed along the wide banks of the Thamalakane River where red lechwe antelope can still be seen grazing next to local donkeys, goats and cattle. Since Maun's founding in 1915 it has had a reputation as a hard-living 'Wild West' town helping the local cattle ranching and hunting operations. Maun today is a thriving tourist town famous for its donkey population and to a lesser extent, goats. These animals can be seen standing around town as they are used by local traders and farmers alike to transport their wares to sell on the curb side.
    NB: If time allows, we have the opportunity to take an optional scenic flight over the Okavango Delta, either this afternoon or on day 15 on our return from the Delta excursion

    Duration: 1 day

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    • Lunch
    • Dinner
    Accommodation included: Overnight at Delta Rain's Sitatunga Camp, Botswana

    Day 14: Maun - Okavango Delta

    Stop At: Okavango Delta, Maun, Ngamiland East Botswana
    Leaving the campsite in Maun we begin our excursion into the Okavango Delta by an open 4x4 truck to the mokoro station. Here we will be introduced to the local Tswana Polers that will be guiding us on this expedition. We travel by mokoro (dugout canoe) amongst the giant lily pads, tall grasses and labyrinthine channels in search of resident wildlife and a variety of birds, to our tented camp from which we can explore the area on a walking safari. The Okavango is a natural wetland spreading over some 1,600,000ha of northern Botswana that offers a perfect habitat for the many species of wildlife that roam here freely. The Okavango River rises in Angola (farther to the north) and flows south dividing repeatedly after crossing into Botswana to form an intricate floodplain of channels and which spreads out into a broad flat inland delta – the only one of its kind in the world. We enjoy the afternoon wilderness experience and overnight listening to the sounds of the African night - an unforgettable experience!
    Duration: 1 day

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    • Lunch
    • Dinner
    Accommodation included: Overnight at Elephant Camp, Okavango Delta, Botswana

    Day 15: Okavango Delta - Maun

    Stop At: Sitatunga Camp, Maun, Okavango/Moremi, Botswana, Botswana
    This morning we take an easy paced mokoro ride out of the Okavango Delta back to the polers station from where we will drive back to Maun, our overnight stop. We aim to get back to camp around lunch time to allow for the opportunity to enjoy an optional scenic flight over this spectacular UNESCO world heritage site. Alternatively, the afternoon can be spent at leisure at the camp’s pool.
    Duration: 1 day

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    • Lunch
    • Dinner
    Accommodation included: Overnight at Delta Rain's Sitatunga Camp, Botswana

    Day 16: Maun – Elephant Sands, Nata

    Stop At: Elephant Sands, Farm PP1, Nata Ranches, Nata, Botswana
    Today, we make our way towards Nata travelling through a wide-open wildlife corridor between the Nxai and the Makgadikgadi Pans. We stop off to see one of Africa’s most iconic trees - the Baobab along the way and arrive at the Elephant Sands Lodge during the late afternoon. The camp has no fences, so all wildlife can roam freely from one waterhole to another and one can expect to see a variety of antelope and other wildlife during your stay at Elephant Sands. It is one of the most unique and amazing experiences to watch wild elephants and their behavior at such close proximity.
    Duration: 1 day

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    • Lunch
    • Dinner
    Accommodation included: Overnight at Elephant Sands Camp, Nata, Botswana

    Day 17: Elephant Sands, Nata - Kasane

    Stop At: Thebe River Camping, Lease Area 76, Kasane, Botswana
    We make our way to the northern corner of Botswana to Kasane, the gateway to Chobe National Park. By size, it is the third largest park in the country and is the most diverse; home to elephant, lion, buffalo, hippo and abundant birdlife, including the famous African fish eagle. We take a ‘Fish Eagle’ cruise on the Chobe River – a great opportunity to see hippo and perhaps elephant or buffalo coming to the river to bathe and drink.
    The Chobe River is a major watering spot for large breeding herds of elephants, as well as families of giraffe, sable and cape buffalo. The flood plains are the only place in Botswana where the puku antelope can be seen. Birding is also excellent here. When in flood spoonbills, ibis, various species of stork and other waterfowl flock to the area.

    Duration: 1 day

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    • Lunch
    • Dinner
    Accommodation included: Overnight at Thebe Camp, Kasane, Botswana

    Day 18: Kasane – Livingstone, Victoria Falls, Zambia

    Stop At: Zambezi Waterfront, Sawmills, Livingstone, Zambia
    This morning we head out to explore the Chobe National Park on an open vehicle game drive where we have the opportunity to spot not only elephant that are so prolific in the park, but also lion, and different antelope species. Moving on from Kasane we take the ferry across the confluence of the Chobe and Zambezi Rivers into Zambia. Zambia, formerly known as Northern Rhodesia took its name from the Zambezi River at independence in 1964. The Zambezi River is the fourth longest in Africa (after the Nile, Congo and Niger) and the largest flowing into the Indian Ocean. Home to one of the world’s largest waterfalls, we visit Victoria Falls and try to take in the immensity of one of nature’s Wonders of the World. At various times of year, the spray from the Falls can be seen from up to 20 or 30 kilometers away, hence the local name ‘Mosi oa Tunya’ – the ‘Smoke that Thunders’.
    We set up camp at the Waterfront campsite on the banks of the Zambezi, just a few kilometers from the Victoria Falls and the small town of Livingstone. We will give a full briefing on the various optional activities available in the area (typically these include rafting, canoeing, bungee, abseiling, gorge swinging, scenic flights and river cruises), allowing you to plan your time accordingly.

    Duration: 1 day

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    Accommodation included: Overnight at The Victoria Falls Waterfront Lodge, Livingstone Zambia

    Day 19: Livingstone, Victoria Falls, Zambia

    Stop At: Zambezi Waterfront, Sawmills, Livingstone, Zambia
    Our tour ends after breakfast but we highly recommend staying a few more days in the area in order to explore the Victoria Falls area to the full. Apart from the adventure activities already mentioned check out the markets, volunteer a day in some worthwhile local projects, or simply relax at the beautiful waterfront and watch the Zambezi River flow quickly past on its way to Victoria Falls
    Duration: 1 day

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    No accommodation included on this day.
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    Reviewed July 10, 2018 via mobile

    My most memorable trip ever! My favourite part was the mokoro canoes in the Okavango Delta in Botswana. 100% recommend Acacia😊 Remember to bring warm clothes and a solid sleeping bag if you’re camping, the temperature drops ALOT as soon as the sun goes down.More

    Thank emblaveum
    Arno D, Manager at Acacia Africa, responded to this reviewResponded July 25, 2018

    Dear Embla V, Thank you for taking the time to write about your experience and including the details of what to expect and bring on tour. The 19-day Desert Tracker camping overland tour is certainly a firm favourite and highlights the best of Namibia, Botswana...More

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