Mandela’s Africa

Travel and experience Nelson Mandela’s Africa. Visit Qunu in the Eastern Cape where “Madiba” grew up, learn about his Xhosa culture, stand in his cell on Robben Island and visit the prison where he was released in 1990. This 30-day selfdrive tour also shows you the best of wildlife, culture and history including several natural and cultural World Heritage Sites.


Mandela`s Africa

Day 1 Johannesburg

On arriving at Johannesburg International Airport, you will be met by our representative, who will assist you with you documents and the formalities, before you make your way to collect your car and drive to your hotel near the airport.
Overnight: Airport Game Lodge incl. breakfast

Day 2 Waterberg (ca. 300 km)

Today you will drive to Waterberg Bushveld Retreat located in the Malaria free Waterberg biosphere. On your way you can visit the Sterkfontein Caves which are one of the richest and most productive paleo-anthropological sites in the world and form part of the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site. Amongst the most remarkable findings to have been made by numerous world famous scientists within the Cradle of Humankind is the famous Mrs. Ples, the first complete Australopithecus skull to be discovered and more recently, “Little Foot”, a 4.17 million-year-old almost complete ape-man skeleton was also discovered in the same caves. At the Waterberg Bushveld retreat you can relax at their hydro or just enjoy the tranquillity of the game reserve.
Overnight: Waterberg Bushveld Retreat incl. breakfast

Day 3 Waterberg

Today you can relax at the accommodation, which is situated on the Waterberg plateau, go on game drives, horse riding, hiking or visit the Waterberg Welfare society in Vaalwater, which was formed in 2000 primarily to provide support to those individuals infected and affected by the pandemic HIV/AIDS.
Overnight: Waterberg Bushveld Retreat incl. breakfast

Day 4 Soutpansberg (ca. 370 km)

Today you will travel north towards Soutpansberg. Tonight’s accommodation is  Fairtrade in Tourism accredited and situated on top of the Soutpansberg mountain in one of Southern Africa’s most spectacular bio-diverse and beautiful natural environments.Transcending expectations, this private nature reserve is a family-run mountain retreat. It is offering a uniquely African experience with luxury touches, warm hospitality and rich memories.

Climb above clouds and walk with rhino in a breath-taking mountaintop environment. Stay at the Venda Village Lodge, unlike anything else in Africa; a hand sculpted, luxurious, artistic wonderland.
Join us in our activies, including hiking trails, horse riding,mountain biking, rock art, game viewing and more.
Overnigh: FTTSA Leshiba Wilderness, Full Board

Day 5 Soutpansberg – Mapungubwe National Park (200km)

After breakfast you can make your way to Mapungubwe National Park and World Heritage Site. Mapungubwe National Park is situated on the northern border of South Africa, uniting Botswana and Zimbabwe, it is an extensive savannah landscape situated at the meeting place of the Limpopo and Shashe rivers.  Come and join these diverse pilgrims and unforgettable moments.  Mapungubwe National Park is rich in biodiversity, great scenic beauty and the cultural importance of the archaeological treasures of Mapungubwe. Stock up on food your way to the park, you can prepare a real South African “braai”, in the bush, as these are self catering cottages with all amenities provided.
Overnight: Mapungubwe National Park, Room Only

Day 6 Mapungubwe National Park

Today you can relax at the rock pool, go on optional game drives, guided heritage site  tour or on a game drive in your own car. Experience the wildlife and mystic scenery : Sandstone formations, mopane woodlands and unique riverine forest and baobab trees form the astounding scenic backdrop for a rich variety of animal life. Elephant, giraffe, white rhino, eland, gemsbok and numerous other antelope species occur naturally in the area. Birders can tick off 400 species, including kori bustard, tropical boubou and pel’s fishing owl.

Day 7 Magoebaskoof / Tzaneen (ca. 350 km)

Leave early and make your way to Magoebaskloof, this particularly bleautiful part of the world lies at the foot of the northern tip of the Drakensberg range of mountains about 58 Kilometres from Polokwane. Magoebaskloof is hiking country, the landscape dominated by dramatic scenery and afromontane forests that rank as some of the most extensive in South Africa. Tonight you will overnight in Magoebaskloof, short hikes depart from the hotel and in the nearby area.
Overnight Magoebaskloof Hotel incl. breakfast

Day 8 Southern Part of Kruger National Park (ca. 270 km)

Today you drive via Abel Erasmus Pass and the Panorama route, with highlights as Blyde River Canyon, Bourke’s Luck Potholes and God’s Window. Time permitting you can visit historical gold mining city Pilgrim’s Rest. Continue in direction of Numbi gate at the boarder of Kruger National Park, where you will overnight for two nights in a Eco Friendly Tented Lodge conformed to the highest standards of low impact eco-friendly criteria. The lodge is also no concrete and no foundations means no damage! They are in a partnership between the Mhaule Rural Community.
Overnight: Nkambedi tented lodge incl. breakfast

Day 9 Kruger National Park

Today you will experience the world-renowned Kruger National Park, 2 million hectares of unrivalled diversity of life forms fuses with historical and archaeological sights – this is real Africa !
Today you can have a wildlife experience in the Big Five territory; spot the Elephant, Lion, Rhino, Leopard and the Buffalo. For those who prefer a guided game or safari drive in open Land Rovers, or participate in guided bush walks with rangers and trackers; these excursions can be booked via your accommodation.
Things To Seek
1. The Big Five – Buffalo, Elephant, Leopard, Lion and Rhino
2. The Little Five – Buffalo Weaver, Elephant Shrew, Leopard Tortoise, Ant Lion and Rhino Beetle
3. Birding Big Six– Ground Hornbill, Kori Bustard, Lappet- faced Vulture, Martial Eagle, Pel’s Fishing Owl and Saddle-bill Stork4. Five Trees – Baobab, Fever Tree, Knob Thorn, Marula, MopaneSpend your last night listening to the rumble of the African Jungle.
Overnight: Nkambedi tented lodge incl. breakfast

Day 10 Shewula, Swaziland (ca. 250 km)

After breakfast you will make your way towards Swaziland and leave the former Transvaal and drive to the beautiful kingdom of Swaziland. After customs, you continue to Shewula. The Shewula Mountain Camp straddles the 500 metre high Lubombo mountains with a 100 km view of Swaziland encompassing nearby Mbuluzi and Llawula, and Hlane game parks. This community Eco-Tourism camp is the first of it’s kind in Swaziland and today one of it’s success in the whole of southern Arica, fully owned and run by the community. Meals are prepared by the local community
Overnight: Shewula Mountain Camp incl. meals

Day 11 Shewula

Today you can indulge in the beauty of the surroundings, the camp offers hiking trails, you can visit the neighboring village, take a tour to the Sangoma (traditional healers) and see other projects as well as buy locally manufactured arts and crafts which are manufactured responsibly.
Overnight: Shewula Mountain Camp incl. meals

Day 12 Mlilwane (ca. 150 km)

Today you can visit the capital Mbabane, the Swazi market and a local school where you can meet the children and teachers. You overnight in the Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary, depending on your tour choice in traditional grass-dome shaped beehives or a unique hilltop lodge. Here you can book optional excursions to discover Swaziland: guided game-drive, mountain bike or horse ride via your accommodation.
Overnight Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary, incl. breakfast

Day 13 Swaziland – Zululand (ca. 370 km)

Today you will leave Swaziland and travel through the sugarcane fields to Zululand. Zululand is an area that once was ruled by the famous Zulu king Shaka. Zululand is a historic region and home of the Zulus. The terrain rises from a low coastal plain to the foothills of the Drakensberg range. You will make your way to St Lucia Estuary. On your way you will pass Lake St Lucia (37 000ha) and the Eastern Shores (30 000ha) together comprise the largest estuarine system on the African continent. Lake St Lucia was declared a Natural World Heritage Site by UNESCO. It is a Wetland of International Importance under the Ramsar Convention. This means that its value as a conservation area extends beyond the borders of the country.
Overnight: Elephant Coast Guest House incl. breakfast

Day 14 St Lucia

Today you can discover the magnificent Hluhluwe-Umfolozi National park and the Greater St Lucia Wetland Park. Via your accommodation you can book optional excursions:  guided boat tour, canoe trail, surfing, snorkelling, guided open vehicle game drive and walking trails.
Overnight: Elephant Coast Guest House incl. breakfast

Day 15 Durban (ca. 280 km)

Today you drive along the coast to Durban, on your way you have the option to stop at Eshowe and visit the  Vukani Museum, which has the world’s largest collection of traditional Zulu Arts and Crafts.  Tonight you will experience Durban, the largest city of the vast and varied KwaZulu-Natal province of South Africa.
Overnight: Garden Court, incl. breakfast

Day 16 Southern Drakensberg / Underberg (ca. 300 km)

You will make your way to the Southern part of the Drakensberg to a small town called Himeville.  This region around Himeville presents more fly-fishing opportunities than anywhere else in the country. You have the option to visit the Himeville museum, this museum is home to a valued collection of San artefacts and an insightful interpretation of the life and times of these ancient ones is to be found here.
Overnight: Himeville Arms incl. breakfast

Day 17 Southern Drakensberg  / Underberg

After breakfast you will have the opportunity to travel via the awe-inspiring Sani Pass with an altitude of 2874m into the “Mountain Kingdom of Lesotho”. It is the getaway to the “Roof of Africa”. The scenery is breathtaking and attracts visitors from all over the world.
Originally developed as a bridal path in 1913, the pass served as an important link between the Underberg district and the remote settlement of Mokhotlong, in north-eastern Lesotho. The first vehicle negotiated the path in 1948. It is now used for the most part by 4×4 vehicles and has become the highlight of the Southern Drakensberg. This tour will reveal the history of the pass, geology of the mountains, flora & fauna, and a unique experience with the Basotho people. The highest pub in Africa is also situated here. An experience not to be missed!
Overnight: Himeville Arms incl. breakfast

Day 18 Coffee Bay (ca. 420 km)

A very early departure is required to make your way towards the region of the Eastern Cape where you will continue your walk through the life of Nelson Mandela (known as Madiba). Today you will travel to Mthatha, where the Nelson Mandela National Museum is situated. Here you will have the opportunity to experience Madiba’s true story in his own words in the midst & soil of his childhood and of his kith and kin, be inspired by the number of people who were touched by the him. Interact with local, national and international people. After a very informative tour you will make your way to Coffee Bay.
Overnight: FTTSA Bulungula, room only

Day 19 Coffee Bay

Coffee Bay is one of the most beautiful spots on the Wild Coast in South Africa. Here you will find a misty, untouched bay, haunted by ghosts of shipwrecked sailors, in the heart of the Wild Coast. One of the must see places is the “hole in the wall”, a geological marvel. You can go on one of the various hiking trails or just enjoy a day in the sun.
Overnight: FTTSA Bulungula, room only

Day 20 Via Qunu to East London (ca. 270 km)

Today you will make your way to Qunu, the home village of Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela. At the museum in Qunu, village tours are arranged to follow Nelson Mandela’s authentic childhood footprints to : Nelson Mandela’s original home, his primary school, the church where he was christened, and his favorite sliding stone. After your tour you can make your way to your next accommodation.
Overnight: Chintsa Sand Bed & Breakfast in Inkwenkwezi Reserve incl. breakfast

Day 21 East London area – Port Elizabeth (ca. 350km)

Make your way to Port Elizabeth the Friendly Eco-City of the Eastern Cape. Here you have the opportunity to go one of the tours to the historical New Brighton and Red Location areas. These are the two oldest townships in Port Elizabeth. Port Elizabeth was at the centre of the ANC based liberation struggle, with Govan Mbeki and Raymond Mhlaba being very active here. Due to the strong branches and strong underground movement here, Mandela spent time here, underground working on the setting up of MK. He never lived here, but was in and out of the area as part of setting up the resistance. When Mandela was released from prison, after his Cape Town appearance, he insisted to visit Port Elizabeth first, due to the strong support during the struggle.

Overnight: Cape Flame incl. breakfast

Day 22 Port Elizabeth

Today you can do an optional day excursion to Baviaanskloof World Heritage site. Baviaanskloof is a valley some 200 km long between the Kouga and Baviaanskloof mountains, about 100km inland from South Africa’s Garden Route coast. The area can be approached from Willowmore in the west or Patensie in the east and this 180 000 hectare tract of raw wilderness is the third largest natural area in South Africa. You can also do an optional tour to Addo Elephant National Park. This finely tuned ecosystem is home to over 450 elephants, Cape buffalo, black rhino, antelopes as well as the unique flightless dung beetle, found almost exclusively in Addo.

Optional can you also book a Fairtrade in Tourism certified shebeen tour in Port Elizabeth, introducing you to the social side of local life.

Day 23 Tsitsikamma / Stormsriver (ca. 200 km)

After breakfast  you will make your way towards Storms River. On your way you can partake in one of the adventure activities which Canopy tours are offering, eg bungi jumping from the Bloukrans River Bridge,which claims to be world’s highest at 216 meters. You will visit Tsitsikamma (place of many waters) National Park, where the booming breakers of the Indian Ocean relentlessly pound rocky shores, where temperate high forest and fynbos roll down to the sea in an unspoilt verdant carpet, where ancient rivers carve their paths to the ocean down rocky ravines. ‘Storms River’ has become something of a synonym for the wild, crashing seas and breathtaking views of Storms River Mouth, the incredible suspension bridge that serves as a lookout point over stormy seas and precipitous cliffs through which the Storms River tumults into the sea can also be seen here.
Overnight: Stormsriver, room only

Day 24 Tsitsikamma / Stormsriver – Oudtshoorn (ca. 250km)

You are entering the Western Cape Province today – Oudtshoorn  “Ostrich Capital” of South Africa. Experience the world’s largest, flightless bird at the Ostrich Show Farms in Oudtshoorn. These birds are known throughout the world for their feathers, leather and meat. You can also ride an Ostrich – if you dare. Oudtshoorn is also home to the “shy 5″ i.e. meerkats and other secretive critters In the afternoon there is time to relax, or you can have a look at the impressive Cango Caves. The Cango Caves, just one of the many natural wonders in the Little Karoo. Water, time and simple chemistry have combined, over hundreds of thousands of years, to create a magical display of carved caverns, corridors and dripstone formations deep within the Swartberg Mountain Range.
Overnight: Die Gat Bed & Breakfast incl. breakfast

Day 25 Oudtshoorn

Experience the Swartberg pass (part of the World Heritage Site) on an optional full day tour. It is considered one of the most spectacular mountain passes in the world: an untarred road wind to the summit 1 583 meters above sea level in steep zig-zags and sudden switchbacks, with breath-taking views at every turn. The natural characteristics of the Pass are magnificent, as are the man-made features. This was Thomas Banin’s last engineering masterpiece. End your day with a traditional dinner at Kobus se Gat, an experience not to be missed.
Overnight: Die Gat Bed & Breakfast incl. breakfast

Day 26 Via Route 62 to Nuy Valley / Worcester (ca. 350 km)

Today you depart Oudshoorn for Nuy Valley on your way you will go through Robertson, nestled between the majestic Langeberg Mountains and the Breede River. Robertson is the gateway to scenic Route 62, on route you have the opportunity to experience Fairtrade Soekershof walkabout;  Soekershof Walkabout portrays the spiritual diversity of South Africa in mazes, a cactus labyrinth, a philosopher’s garden. Tonight you will stay in a original Cape Dutch homestead.
Overnight Nuy Valley Guest House incl. breakfast

Day 27 Cape Town (ca. 150 km)

Depart for the town of Paarl in the winelands to visit Klein Drakenstein Prison, (formerly Victor Verster Prison), which was Mandela’s last place of imprisonment before his release in 1990. This was the first time that the world at large saw Mandela as he walked through the prison gates on his “Long Walk To Freedom”. Overnight 3 nights on walking distance of the city centre of Cape Town.
Overnight FTTSA Bickley House incl. breakfast

Day 28 Cape Town

Today you can choose to visit Robben Island Museum, a World Heritage Site. Depart on ferry for Robben Island and a 3½ hour round trip of this extraordinary prison where Mandela and fellow political prisoners were incarcerated.  Enjoy a relaxing afternoon at the Waterfront. Enjoy one of the blue flag beaches, Bikini Beach, Big Bay, Camps Bay , Strandfontein, Mnadi, Muizenberg Beach or Clifton 4 or hike Table Mountain

Day 29 Cape Town

Today you have the opportunity to experience some of the highlights of the Mother City and visit one of the social or community projects of your interest. You can book a tour to the Cape Peninsula & Cape Point. Stopover and visit the Jikeleza Dance Project in the little harbour place Hout Bay. You can choose to various Community Projects, or do a day tour to the wine lands, Paarl, Stellenbosch or Franschoek.

Day 30 Cape Town

This is your last day to experience Cape Town before your departure to Cape Town International Airport with a suitcase full of great memories, unforgettable experiences and tons of photos.

INCLUSIVE / EXCLUSIVE

Including:

  • Meet and Greet at arrival
  • Extended route descriptions
  • Accommodation in selected accommodation
  • National Parks

Excluding:

  • Car hire
  • Entry fees for World Heritage Sites and National Parks and Panorama routes/ toll ways
  • Luggage service/portage
  • Insurance
  • Visa
  • Optional excursions and extra meals

Please read our terms and conditions to inform yourself about our booking procedures.
Kindly note that the prices and accommodation are subject to change based on date, availability and special requests.

What makes this trip different

We stay in accommodations and participate on excursions that are dedicated to staff and local community as well as the conservation of the areas in which they develop. We stay in these accommodations and participate on these excursions to assist in the growth of sustainable tourism. These tours offer tourists the opportunity to uplift the communities by visiting the projects we support through our non-profit organisation.Your visits benefits the people you meet!

On this particular tour: You visit the Soutpansberg mountain in one of Southern Africa’s most spectacular bio-diverse and beautiful natural environments. Overnight in community owned Shewula Lodge, Fairtrade Leshiba Bushcamp, Eco friendly Nkambedi Tented Lodge, Mlilwane Nature reserve and Storms River, Mpungubwe National Park. Visit Madiba’s village Qunu; meet  the Tembu and Xhosa women in their colorful and traditional dress with white ochre tattooed faces to protect their skins from the sun and enhance their beauty.

You can optionally participate in an unique Fairtrade township excursion in Port Elizabeth; you visit local community project and also learn about  the two oldest townships in Port Elizabeth that was at the centre of the ANC based liberation struggle, with Govan Mbeki and Raymond Mhlaba being very active here. Stay in Southern Drakensberg in Himeville and reveal the history of the pass, geology of the mountains, flora & fauna, and a unique experience with the Basotho people.  You can optionally visit Fairtrade Soekerhof and Fairtrade Tsitsikamma canopy tours.

Contact us now if you want to have info on availabilities or other open questions!

This entry was posted in Self Drive. Bookmark the permalink.