Africa has an incredibly rich cultural history, boasting hundreds of separate cultural groups, languages, and traditions. The remnants of the first humans and their ancestors have all been discovered in Africa, and along with the ancient landscape of the continent, you can be truly awed by the cultural knowledge and experiences you gain with this trip.
SOUTH AFRICAN CULTURE
The tour begins in Johannesburg and takes 28 days to travel slowly through the fascinating parts of South Africa, rich in both cultural and historical legacies. You will visit various cultural sites that each offer unique experiences with a chance to experience the diversity of this rainbow nation, finally ending in the the city of Cape Town
from €4499 per person
2017 rates (14% VAT inclusive)
Arrive in Johannesburg (flight for own expense) and be welcomed and taken to hotel.
On the starting day, take breakfast at your hotel and we will have a pre-tour briefing before we head off on our expedition; the plan, signing of indemnity forms, checking baggage etc.
Beginning our tour around Johannesburg, we spend the first few nights visiting the many fascinating cultural aspects of the City of Gold.
The first day heading off to the south western areas, where both a tour of the Soweto township and a visit to the Apartheid museum start the contrast of cultures in the economic beating heart of RSA.
We start with a tour of the Apartheid museum which tells the story of the political system that governed South Africa for almost half of the 20th century. Stories, interactive displays, photographs, and various souvenirs from the Apartheid era will fascinate us for the morning. We then head out to Soweto for a tour of the fascinating township, boasting a street where two Nobel Peace Prize winners lived, Vilikazi Street, the world-class Soccer City stadium, and a general tour immersing us in the vibrant street culture.
Next we travel up into the Cradle of Humankind, where a large number of remains of our early human ancestors have been repeatedly found, and the story of our origins over the past few million years, are told in spectacular glory. We take a look at both the Maropeng precinct and the Sterkfontein caves.
From here we continue our journey north, to visit Makapansgat (Valley), another world heritage site, again famous for its archaeological findings, but also its more recent history linked to early conflict between Boers and tribes escaping the great Mfecane, a large-scale migration of people caused by the Zulu kingdom's expansion lead by the famous chief Shaka Zulu.
apartheid & cradle of humankind
We move further north to the border of Zimbabwe, where we find a proud legacy of African history, Mapungubwe. A site of the great Zimbabwe Kingdom that pre-dated colonial arrival by several hundred years. A well preserved hill-top and world class museum are the highlights of this area, guided by the local and ancestral people and set in a pristine National Park. We spend three nights in this fascinating place with an added bonus of experiencing the wildlife.
From here we move across into Venda territory, where we follow the trade of local arts & crafts on the Ribola Route. This is also a fascinating landscape, rich in cultural legacy and mysticism. From pottery, to wood sculpture, to beautiful design, we include African hospitality in the form of dances and traditions. This is also the area of various tribes and their long and proud histories, including Modjadji the 'Rain Queen.'
We then head down to Zwakala brewery for home-grown craft beers, great food, and a market experience. Sited in the Magoebaskloof mountains, this tranquil location with great family hospitality allows us to unwind, spend time by the river and taste beer.
We continue our journey south, heading into the Free State.
great zimbabwe, arts & crafts
We pass Vredefort Dome, the world's oldest and largest surviving crater which shows the remains of a meteorite striking earth.
From here we head into the mountains bordering Lesotho, where we discover a fascinating site that served as both a church, and holds the magnificent rock art of the bushmen. It also has fascinating stories of a place that attracted various characters throughout history, who were drawn to the spirituality of the caves.
We travel further into the Karoo where we find what was once an ancient inland sea, and holds fascinating examples of fossils and geology that tell us a story of life in South Africa millions of years ago. Spend time in the timeless Karoo, where you can reflect on the important things in life as you gaze at the panorama of stars and spend days in the arid landscape.
bushmen & fossils
We finish off the final week of the tour around Cape Town and its hinterland. Being the first European settlement, the Cape's history is rich and varied, and we will visit various sites that highlight this story.
Take a tour of one of the longest-surviving trademarks in the world, Groot Constantia, where we see early settlement and government blended with world-class wines.
We travel around the city bowl, visiting Robben Island, the prison that held Nelson Mandela and his comrades for so many years, travel to District Six, a part of Cape Town with a similar dark history, and Bo Kaap with all its vibrancy and culture.
We take a township tour to see how many people live on the outskirts of the city, experiencing again the vibrancy and great street food of these informal settlements.
We also visit a less well-known part of Cape Town, where an urban agricultural initiative the Phillipi Horticultural Area, which provides about half of the city's fruit & vegetables, is under threat from building development.
the cape & surrounds
Final morning in Cape Town, debriefing, own transport, accommodation, flights home.
take a look at the FAQ page for more detailed information regarding expeditions
Every evening the group comes together for a discussion on the next day's schedule, places of interest, possible sightings, group input etc.
All meals are provided unless specified otherwise (some meals for own expense at a restaurant).
All drinks (bottled water, soft-drinks, alcoholic beverages etc.) are for own expense, a fridge will be provided to keep these cool for the group.
All activities listed in the schedule are inclusive, but several optional activities én route will be for own expense if chosen.
Whilst the itinerary is fixed, separate time will be given for own activities along the journey for personal and special interests. Every night's accommodation will be fixed and guaranteed.
As with all travel, but more especially with cultural tours, it is very important to respect the various sites and experiences that we travel to. Before taking pictures of people and traditional environments, it is important to remember to ask permission please! In addition, tolerance should be used to be respectful at all times: some of the cultural experiences have sensitive atmospheres.