10 Day Kruger & Elephant Coast Safari - 10 Days

Overview

On this safari, we visit two countries, South Africa (Panorama Route, Kruger National Park, St Lucia Estuary & Durban) and Mozambique (Maputo, Elephant Reserve & Ponta Dun Ouro).

Our journey takes us to world-renowned Kruger National Park, in South Africa to white sandy beaches of Mozambique and the warm Indian Ocean.
This safari offers two very diverse but equally captivating wildlife and cultural experiences and is perfect for private small groups.

We start the Safari with a visit to the spectacular scenery of the Panorama Route and then on to Kruger National Park – a renowned Big 5 destination; you will have the opportunity for thrilling, memorable wildlife sightings during the day and night drives (Optional).

From Kruger National Park we travel to Mozambique and on to the sandy white beaches and the tropical Indian Ocean – where you can have some real beach time to scuba, snorkel, fishing, and many more. The included Ocean Safari will give you the chance of seeing dolphins, manta rays, and even the magnificent whale shark.

Highlights

  • Panorama Route - Blyde River Canyon, Bourke's Luck Potrholes, Lisbon Falls, God's Window.
  • Kruger National Park
  • Maputo City
  • Maputo Elephant Reserve
  • Ponta Du Ouro
  • St Lucia Wetlands Estuary
  • City of Durban

Itinerary

Day 1
Johannesburg - Panorama Route, South Africa

Collection at OR Tambo International airport or surrounding lodges will be between 6:00 – 7:30 am. My offices will advise clients of the pickup time the day before.

Today we will follow the picturesque Panorama route, heading past unique small towns like Dullstroom & Lydenburg.

We will visit the Blyde River Canyon (the world’s 3rd largest canyon), as well as Bourke’s Luck potholes, followed by Lisbon Falls as well as the famous God’s Window.

We will enjoy lunch (Own Expense) en-route. The last stop is a peaceful little town called Graskop where clients will enjoy a wide variety of curio shopping before heading to our accommodation for the next few nights, arriving late afternoon. Leisure time is enjoyed after dinner before the next day’s safari.

Accommodation: Camping, upgrade to Lodge possible at own expense.
Included Meals: Dinner only.
Included Highlights:

  • Pick up from your accommodation.
  • Panorama Route, Blyde River Canyon, Bourke’s Luck Potholes, Lisbon Falls & God’s Window.

Optional Activities:None.

Day 2
Kruger National Park, South Africa

We enter the Kruger National Park once the gates are open then go on to explore the Park on the lookout for lions, majestic herds of elephants, a solitary leopard lying in a shady tree, the amazing rhino, and herds of buffalo, as well as a multitude of other wild animals and birds, like hornbills, eagles, hippo, zebra, giraffe, not forgetting the abundance of buck, like impala & kudu. We spend the night camping at one of the Reset Camps in Kruger National Park.

Accommodation: Camping at one of the Rest Camps in KNP
Included Meals: B & D.
Included Highlights:

  • All day game drives in KNP.
  • All Conservation Fees.

Optional Activities:

  • Open vehicle night drive in Kruger National Park.
  • Guided walking safari in Kruger National Park.

Day 3
Kruger National Park, South Africa

Today, we travel South towards Pretoriuskop Camp where we will spend the night. We go on to explore the Park on a guided game drive stopping off at the various pic-nick spots and rest camps. Lunch (Own expense) can be enjoyed at Skukuza, Kruger’s main Rest Camp with views over the Sabie River where animals such as Elephant frequently come and drink water.

Accommodation: Camping at one of the Rest Camps in KNP.
Included Meals: B & D.
Included Highlights:

  • All day game drives in KNP.
  • All Conservation Fees.

Optional Activities:

  • Open vehicle night drive in Kruger National Park.
  • Guided walking safari in Kruger National Park.

Day 4
Kruger National Park - Maputo, Mozambique

We embark on an early morning game drive searching for the animals that have eluded us so far. We exit the Park at Crocodile Bridge Gate and our journey takes us to Maputo, the capital city of Mozambique, with a border crossing at Komatiepoort Border Post. Maputo offers a vibrant and eclectic mix of cultures. Maputo offers interesting and varied architecture and no visit to the city would be complete without a browse through a market and a tour of the city. Tonight we eat out and get a chance to experience the night-life of this intriguing city.

Accommodation: Lodge in Maputo.
Included Meals: B & D.
Included Highlights:

  • Morning game drive in Kruger National Park.
  • Transfer to Maputo.
  • Maputo City Tour.
  • Visit to Maputo Market.
  • Maputo Nightlife..

Optional Activity:None.

Day 5
Maputo - Maputo Elephant Resrve - Santa Maria, Mozambique

Today, our journey takes us South to the Maputo Elephant Reserve. After breakfast, we will head towards the ferry that takes us to the Southside of Maputo Bay, Catembe or we cross the Bay on the newly built Suspension Bridge.

On your way to the Reserve, you’ll pass the village of Salamanga. Here, you will get the chance to visit a local bread factory as well as a Hindu temple, which is one of the highlights of the village (optional).

As soon as we enter the Reserve our game drive begins. Driving along the Reserve, there is so much to discover. The Reserve is jam packed with wildlife and ecosystems so rich and extraordinary. Today we will enjoy a pick nick lunch alongside a beautiful lagoon teeming with a variety of birdlife and animals that come for a drink.

Once you have finished lunch, we will continue your drive towards Santa Maria with breath-taking views over Maputo Bay and Inhaca Islands, only a stone through away across the channel. WE end the day with a sunset cruise at Santa Maria.

Accommodation: Bemugi’s Place.
Included Meals: B, L & D.
Included Highlights:

  • Ferry/Suspension Bridge Crossing to Catembe.
  • Entry and Conservation Fees to Maputo Elephant Reserve.
  • Game Drives in Maputo Elephant Reserve.
  • Sunset Cruise at Santa Maria.

Optional Activities:None.

Day 6
Santa Maria – Ocean Safari, Inhaca & Portuguese Islands.

Today we embark on an included Ocean Safari. Snorkelling equipment is provided and includes Snorkelling and visits to Inhaca and Portuguese Islands. Included in the fee is the Reserve visitor’s fee & Reserve snorkelling fee. Keep a look out for flamingos, pelicans, whales, Sea turtles and dolphins; enjoy a picnic lunch and walk/swim on Portuguese Island, the Inhaca Maritime Museum (optional with a small entry fee) and/or a walk on Inhaca.

There are also many optional activities on offer such as deep sea fishing, tubing and wake boarding etc… (Please refer to detailed list of optional activities and prices)
Accommodation: Bemugi’s Place.
Included Meals: B, L & D.
Included Highlights:

  • Ocean Safari to Inhaca and Portuguese Islands.

Optional Activities:

  • Deep see Fishing – 30,000 Mt for 6Hours.
  • Snorkelling at reserve, including tax – 2,000 Mt per person.
  • Snorkelling picnic at reserve – 4,000 Mt per person.
  • Mangrove canoeing outing – 2,500 Mt per person.
  • Sunset cruise – 1,000 Mt per person.
  • Whale watching – 3,000 MT per hour / 4 people.
  • Tubing and wake boarding – 3,000 Mt for 30 min.
  • Maputo Special Reserve, 4 people – 10,000 Mt ( pay your own entrance fee).

Day 7
Santa Maria - Elephant Reserve - Ponta Do Ouro, Mozambique

This morning you have enough time to go for a long walk along the beach or to participate in optional activities that you might not have time for the day before. After brunch we depart for our next destination, Ponta Do Ouro with a game drive through the Maputo Elephant Reserve en-route.

We drive past and explore the towns Ponta Mamoli & Ponta Malongane before arriving at our destination in the late afternoon.

Accommodation: Lodge in Ponta Do Ouro.
Included Meals: B, L & D.
Included Highlights:

  • Beach time at Santa Maria.
  • Game drive through the Maputo Elephant Reserve.

Day 8
Ponta Do Ouro, Mozambique

Today you have a free day to explore the town of Ponto Do Ouro. You can enjoy some beach time or book a tour to see the dolphins, deep-sea fishing, snorkel or shopping in town.

Ponta do Ouro lies on the most Southern tip of Mozambique and on the Mozambique Channel and just north of the border of South Africa.

It is known for its beach, for its dolphins, and for its offshore diving and deep-sea fishing.

Ponta do Ouro means in English “tip of gold”, in reference ta an existing cape at the southern part of the beach.

Ponta do Ouro has a petrol station, pharmacy, hardware stores, bottle stores, bank and other small shops in town. Basic food items like fruits and vegetables can be purchased at the local market. Fresh bread can be purchased at the local market.

Accommodation: Lodge in Ponta Do Ouro.
Included Meals: B, L & D.
Included Highlights:

  • Beach time at Ponta Do Ouro.

Optional Activities:

  • Swim with Dolphins.
  • Deap Sea Fishing.
  • Snorkelling.

Day 9
Ponta Do Ouro - St Lucia Estuary, South Africa

After a hearty cooked breakfast, we depart to St Lucia Wetland Estuary with a border crossing back into South Africa at Kosi Bay Border Post. We stop in the town of Hluhluwe after which we depart for the Hluhluwe – iMfolozi Park. As soon as we enter the Park our game drive begins.

Hluhluwe–Imfolozi Park, formerly Hluhluwe–Umfolozi Game Reserve, is the oldest proclaimed nature reserve in Africa. It consists of 960 km² (96,000 ha) of hilly topography 280 kilometers (170 mi) north of Durban in central KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, and is known for its rich wildlife and conservation efforts.

On arrival in St Lucia, we check in at our Lodge and embark on an afternoon/sunset cruise on St Lucia Estuary. Your St Lucia trip can never be complete without a Hippo & Croc Boat Cruise along the St Lucia Estuary.

Accommodation: Lodge in St Lucia.
Included Meals: B & D.
Included Highlights:

  • 3 – Hour game drive in Hluhluwe – iMfolozi Park.
  • Hippo & Croc Boat Cruise along the St Lucia Estuary.

Optional Activities: None.

Day 10
St Lucia Estuary - Durban, South Africa

After breakfast, we depart for the City of Durban with a stop at a local craft market en-route. The tour ends on arrival in Durban and you will be dropped at your accommodation Establishment or at the airport for your connecting flight.

Accommodation: None.
Included Meals: Breakfast only.
Included Highlights:

  • Transfer to Durban with a stop at a local craft market.
  • Drop-off in Durban at placed of your choice.
  • Optional Activities: None.

Highlights

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Panorama Route

One of the country’s most scenic self-drives, the Panorama Route, explores the Mpumalanga highlands, or the north-eastern section of the Great Escarpment of the Drakensberg. In these rugged mountains, the plateau comes to an abrupt and dramatic halt, falling steeply away into the Lowveld accompanied by incredible views out over the grasslands of Africa.
To describe the natural attractions with the written word is difficult, but people recount being able to ‘touch the clouds’ whilst others have called the route the ‘most beautiful place in the world’.

The Panorama Route’s popularity has much to do with its proximity to the Kruger National Park. It is often part and parcel of any organized trip to the game reserve. But it is also favored for the access it provides to one of the province’s major scenic draw cards, the Blyde River Canyon. The Blyde River Canyon is one of the largest canyons on earth, and increasingly popular with overseas visitors.
The most popular stretch of the route is the R532 that winds its way from the town of Sabie via a selection of graceful waterfalls – the Sabie Falls, Bridal Veil Falls, Mac Mac Falls – to God’s Window, the Blyde River Canyon, Bourke’s Luck Potholes and the Three Rondawels.

The famous Lowveld View is not even 5 km north of Bourke’s Luck Potholes. This view out over the canyon from a height of 1 219 meters above sea level, the Blyde River cutting its way through the valleys below and the Blydepoort Dam in the distance, is unspeakably beautiful.

To rush the drive would be to miss the enchantment.

Kruger National Park

The largest game reserve in South Africa, the Kruger National Park is larger than Israel. Nearly 2 million hectares of land that stretch for 352 kilometers (20 000 square kilometers) from north to south along the Mozambique border, is given over to an almost indescribable wildlife experience. Certainly, it ranks with the best in Africa and is the flagship of the country’s national parks – rated as the ultimate safari experience.

Did you know?
The Kruger park itself was established in 1898, following a twelve-year crusade to conserve the Lowveld wildlife by Paul Kruger, from whom the park takes its name.
Lying in the heart of the Lowveld is a wildlife sanctuary like no other, its atmosphere so unique that it allows those who enter its vastness to immerse themselves in the unpredictability and endless wilderness that is the true quality of Africa.

The Kruger National Park lies across the provinces of Mpumalanga and Limpopo in the north of South Africa, just south of Zimbabwe and west of Mozambique. It now forms part of the Great Limpopo Transfrontier Park – a peace park that links Kruger National Park with game parks in Zimbabwe and Mozambique, and fences are already coming down to allow the game to freely roam in much the way it would have in the time before man’s intervention. When complete, the Greater Limpopo Transfrontier Park will extend across 35 000 square kilometers, 58% of it South African, 24% Mozambican, and 18% Zimbabwean territory.

This is the land of baobabs, fever trees, knob thorns, marula, and mopane trees underneath which lurk the Big Five, the Little Five (buffalo weaver, elephant shrew, leopard tortoise, ant lion, and rhino beetle), the birding Big Six (ground hornbill, kori bustard, lappet-faced vulture, martial eagle, Pel’s fishing owl, and saddle-bill stork) and more species of mammals than any other African Game Reserve.

The Kruger Park is a self-drive destination, although there are guided tour operators, with an excellent infrastructure that includes picnic sites, rest camps, waterholes, and hides. The Kruger Park is a remarkable reserve offering an incredible experience of Africa at its most wild. (See Kruger Park Tours for overnight and package tours lasting from 1 night and 2 days to weeks-long safaris or see Kruger Park Day Tours for single day guided trips into Kruger National Park.

KRUGER PARK’S DIFFERENT ZONES AND REGIONS
Very broadly speaking, the Kruger National Park is flat with a few gentle hills, and people tend to classify the bushveld of the Kruger as unvaried and dry, which is rather like saying South Africa is sunny – it conceals an amazingly rich diversity. The Kruger National Park is divided into no fewer than six ecosystems – baobab sandveld, Lebombo knobthorn-marula bushveld, mixed acacia thicket, combretum-silver cluster leaf, woodland on granite, and riverine forest.

Four regions make it easier for you to select the type of experience you want from your time in the Kruger National Park:-

KRUGER PARK CENTRAL REGION
Encompassing only 30% of the Kruger park’s surface area, the central region supports nearly half the park’s lion population as well as numbers of leopard, hyena, and cheetah.

Possibly the main reason for this is the number of sweet grasses and abundant browsing trees found in this area that support a large group of antelope, giraffe, buffalo, zebra, and wildebeest. But this does mean that it’s a popular region amongst tourists, and subsequently, there are a number of camps in this region. It’s understandable though, as the chance of sighting even one of the 60 prides of lion that make the central region their home is a huge drawcard.

KRUGER’S FAR NORTH REGION
This is a rather fascinating part of the Kruger National Park, not least because the ecozones here are noticeably different from other habitats in the Kruger. Sightings of rare birdlife and major areas of sand formed by river flood plains, combined with sandstone formations of the Mozambique coastal plain, make it attractive to visitors.

There are also a number of tropical aspects as part of the region lies in a rain shadow and along the banks of the Luvuvhu River is a series of riverine forests. A picnic site on the river bank provides hours of splendid bird viewing.

What you can witness in this part of the Kruger National Park is extraordinary – the knocking sand frog, a collection of bats, the nocturnal bushpig, and the rare Sharpe’s grysbok. There are samango monkeys, packs of endangered wild dog, and the major water pans across the Wambiya sandveld are a good place to sight tropical warm-water fish, such as the rainbow killifish, not found anywhere else in South Africa.

The sandstone hills, just west of Punda Maria, is the only place where you can see the Natal red hare and dassie or the yellow-spotted hyrax. What makes a visit to this remote part of the Kruger park so meaningful is the solitude.

THE NORTHERN KRUGER PARK REGION
North of the Orange River is a semi-arid region covering 7 000 square kilometers that sees very little rain. The vegetation here changes very little from the unvarying shrub mopane, which thrives in hot, low-lying valleys. However, across this great expanse of hot dryness, five rivers forge their way, providing narrow corridors along whose banks grow trees distinctly different from the mopane – the nyala, the sycamore fig, the tamboti, and the tall apple leaf.

The Letaba and Olifants rivers contain as much as 60% of the Kruger park’s hippo population, and birdlife here abounds. There are plenty of bushpig in the undergrowth of the Luvuvhu River and on most of the river banks, you can hope to see sizeable herds of elephant (the Kruger National park’s latest estimate is as many as 9000 of these beautiful beasts), buffalo, bushbuck, impala and kudu concentrated near a water supply.

THE SOUTHERN KRUGER PARK REGION
Bounded by the Crocodile River in the south and the Sabie River in the north, the southern region is also host to the jagged ridge of the Lebombo Mountains along the border with Mozambique, and the highest point in the park, Khandzalive, in the southwestern corner – almost in counterpoint to Pretoriuskop that lies in the west of the southern region of the Kruger National Park.

The valleys are home to trees rarely found in other parts of the Kruger park, such as the Cape chestnut, coral tree, and lavender fever-berry; and granite lies beneath most of the region, producing distinctive smoothed koppies at irregular intervals, which are typically surrounded by rock figs and form ideal locations for rock dassies or hyrax, baboon, and klipspringer, not to mention the odd leopard.

This is the region where you’re almost sure of seeing a white rhino as most of them occur here, particularly around Pretoriuskop, Mbyamiti River, and south of Lower Sabie. On the whole, there is more game purported to exist in the southern part of the park, so if you don’t make it to the northern reaches of the Kruger National Park, you won’t miss out. This part of Kruger Park is to some extent shrouded in history.

Around Pretoriuskop, known for its profusion of trees, is Ship Mountain, its hull-shape the site of an old wagon trail that crosses a stream marking the birthplace of Jock of the Bushveld. The combretum woodlands, also part of this region, attract reasonable herds of kudu, impala, giraffe, buffalo, zebra, white rhino and elephant, and the scarcity of lion in this part of the park, makes way for the cheetah and wild dog.

Maputo

Maputo, formerly Lourenço Marques, is the capital and largest city of Mozambique. It is known as the City of Acacias in reference to acacia trees commonly found along its avenues and the Pearl of the Indian Ocean. Today it is a port city on the Indian Ocean, with its economy centered around the harbor. Chromite and ferrochrome, coal, sugar, copra, and hardwood are the chief exports.

Maputo is located on the west side of Maputo Bay, near the Estuário do Espírito Santo where the rivers Tembe, Umbeluzi, Matola and Influence drain. The bay is 95 kilometers long and 30 kilometers wide. At the extreme east of the city and bay is the island of Inhaca. The total area covered by the municipality of Maputo is 346 km² and borders the city of Matola northeast and east, the districts of Marracuene to the north; Boane in the east and Matutuíne at the south all of which are part of Maputo Province. The city is 120 kilometers from the South African border at Ressano Garcia and 80 kilometers from the border with Swaziland near the town of Namaacha.

Maputo Elephant Reserve

The Maputo Elephant Reserve, north of Ponta Malongane, is a 50 000 hectare mosaic of lakes, floodplains, mangrove swamps, woodlands and forested dunes sweeping down to unspoiled beaches.

The Reserve was once a sanctuary to large herds of elephant, white rhino, and a variety of other game species, but poaching during the civil war reduced animal numbers considerably. The entire white rhino population of 65 animals, introduced from the iMfolozi Game Reserve in South Africa’s KwaZulu-Natal province in 1967 was wiped out, while the elephant population decreased from an estimated 350 in 1971 to a mere 120 by the late 1980s.

The Rio Futi provides an ecological link with the Tembe area in northern KwaZulu-Natal and for centuries the fossil river has been used as a migration route by elephants.

During the winter months, the breeding herds congregate with their calves in the vicinity of the park headquarters before migrating southwards. Fearing that the elephants would be wiped out completely, KwaZulu-Natal conservation authorities fenced off the northern boundary of the Tembe Elephant Park in 1989.

Since 1994 the Endangered Wildlife Trust has provided considerable financial support to the National Directorate of Forestry and Wildlife to rehabilitate the reserve. The program included educating the local population that the area is a reserve, halting, poaching, training game guards, and repairing tourism facilities.

Game numbers are increasing again and the Reserve’s elephant population currently numbers around 200, while the Tembe Elephant Park is estimated at between 130 and 140 animals. although their spoor and dung are frequently seen, the elephants are elusive and difficult to track down in the dense bush. Other animals you chance spotting include hippo, crocodile, nyala, red duiker, suni, vervet monkey, and reedbuck.

The Reserve offers excellent opportunities for bird watching as several species reach the southern limit of their distribution in northern KwaZulu-Natal. Among these are Rudd’s Apalis, Woodward’s batis, Neergaard’s sunbird, and Pink-throated twinspot. Commonly seen species include African Fish Eagle, Crested Guinea Fowl, Olive Bee-eater, Woodland Kingfisher, and White-helmeted Shrike, as well as Grey, trumpeter and Crowned Hornbills.

Cost Includes:

  • Pick up from your accommodation in Gauteng.
  • Panorama Route - Blyde River Canyon, Bourke's Luck Potholes, Lisbon Falls, God's Window, Graskop.
  • Conservation Fees to Kruger National Park, Hluhluwe - iMfolozi Park & Maputo Elephant Reserve.
  • All game drives in Kruger National Park, Maputo Elephant Reserve & Hluhluwe - iMfolozi Park.
  • Guided City tour of Maputo & Market.
  • Sunset Cruise at Santa Maria.
  • Ocean Safari from Santa Maria to Inhaca Island & Portuguese Islands.
  • Boat Cruise on St Lucia Estuary.
  • Drop-off in Durban.
  • All accommodation as specified by the itinerary.
  • All transport as specified by the itinerary.
  • All meals as specified by the itinerary.
  • All included activities as specified by the itinerary.
  • Services of a qualified driver/guide.
  • All conservation and entry fees as specified by the itinerary.

Cost Excludes:

  • All Flight and Airport Taxes.
  • All visas to South Africa & Mozambique.
  • All items of personal nature.
  • All alcoholic and soft drinks.
  • Tips & Gratuities.
  • Excluded meals as specified by the itinerary.
  • Optional activities as specified by the itinerary.

You can send your enquiry via the form below.

10 Day Kruger & Elephant Coast Safari

Trip Facts

  • WTE-416
  • 10 Days/9 Nights
  • Gauteng
  • Durban
  • Mobile Safari
  • Bush Safari, Ocean Safari, Boat, Snorkel, Culture
  • Max 8/Min 2
  • Custombuilt Safari Vehicle
  • 12
  • 60