African Explorer

  • CAD $12,250

  • January 28 - February 15, 2021 | 19 days / 18 nights

Experience the immense beauty of Southern Africa on an epic railroad journey across some of Africa’s most spectacular landscapes. Deep canyons, wide-open plains, wild animals and the highest sand dunes in the world. From Namibian deserts to lush forests, the African Explorer private train is your key to adventure. Have a glass of world-class South African wine in the bar car. Take in the fresh African air from an outdoor observation platform or relax inside the air-conditioned lounge car. There is simply no better way to experience the wonders of Africa.

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Participating Universities

This tour is available to the following University Alumni travel programs

Itinerary

Board your overnight flight to Johannesburg.

Transportation: KLM Airlines

Upon arrival, transfer to your hotel.

Accommodation: Holiday Inn Sandton or similar (1 night)

Visit the Top of Africa viewing deck, for a panoramic city view, and explore Museum Africa which celebrates the vibrant social and cultural history of Africa. Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant, then transfer to the airport for a local flight to Windhoek, Namibia. Upon arrival, meet your local guide and transfer to your hotel..

Transportation: Local flight
Accommodation: AVANI Windhoek Hotel & Casino or similar (1 night)
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Begin with a Windhoek city tour to learn about its colonial and German-influenced past. View the neo-Gothic Christ Church and the Tintenpalast, or “Ink Palace,” which houses the Namibian parliament. At Windhoek Station, it’s “all aboard!” as the exclusively-private train departs on this incredible journey. Have your cameras ready as you pass through private game farms teeming with giraffes, antelopes and ostriches. Overnight onboard your private train for the night.

Accommodation: Onboard African Explorer train (1 night)
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Explore the wonders of Etosha National Park. Ride in comfort with air-conditioned buses across the entire park and observe elephants, gnus and more up close. The Etosha Pan, an extremely flat salt pan, lies at the heart of the Park. This shimmering “great white place”, as its name says, is the largest salt pan in Africa and is teeming with wildlife. The unforgettable day ends with an overnight stay in a nearby lodge.

Accommodation: Mokuti Lodge or similar (1 night)
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Wildlife and birds will give you plenty of reasons to keep your camera out on this extensive morning game drive. Following the safari, sit back and relax en route to the town of Otijiwarongo where a private train will be waiting to continue your Namibian journey. In the evening, enjoy a traditional African Braai (BBQ) under a starry night sky.

Accommodation: Onboard African Explorer train (2 nights)
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

The train stops at Usakos for an excursion to the granite peaks known as the “Spitzkoppe.” Visit a local school to learn about the everyday life of children from the Damara tribe. Back on board, the train continues its journey to Swakopmund where you will arrive in the evening. Visitors to this important Namibian city will discover its intriguing German colonial architecture.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

After breakfast, take an air-conditioned bus to Walvis Bay where, with luck, flocks of flamingos and pelicans will be observed. Then drive to the Skeleton Coast, with views of the Namib Desert and Vogelfederberg Hill, before arriving at the protected Namib Naukluft National Park. Relax at your lodge for the night.

Accommodation: Namib Desert Lodge or similar (2 nights)
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Climb the giant sand dunes of the Namib Desert for a panoramic view in the early morning. Open-top vehicles take you along an unpaved sandy track to the vlei, a salt-clay sink surrounded by sand dunes. Watch for oryx antelopes and springboks. As the sun sets, enjoy a romantic ride through the stunning desert landscape. Overnight in a lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Travel by air-conditioned bus from the lodge in Namib Naukluft National Park to Mariental. Board the train and travel to the tiny village of Maltahöhe for a tasty brunch.

Accommodation: Onboard African Explorer train (5 nights)
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Morning arrival at Aus station and drive to the ghost town of Kolmanskop, the site of Namibia’s first diamond discovery in 1908. Onwards to the harbour town of Lüderitz through the Sperrgebiet (“Restricted Diamond Area”). After crossing the historical Lüderitz peninsula, visit Diaz Point where waves crash against the rocky coastline and fur seals and dolphins can be spotted. Back on board at Aus station, the train continues on its journey south.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Arrival in Holoog. Begin this special day with a visit to Fish River Canyon, the largest canyon in Africa and the second largest in the world. It is also the second most visited attraction in Namibia. Enjoy a scenic canyon excursion from the comfort of the bus and embrace the stunning views. Hop off the bus and take a short walk along the canyon’s edge.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Arrive in Upington in the Northern Cape Province in South Africa and venture off on an excursion to Augrabies Falls National Park. This area is famous for its picturesque waterfalls and abundance of giant aloe trees, or quiver tree as it is known here. The waterfall is 60m high with a deep gorge below. Depart by train in the evening.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Visit the village of Matjiesfontein, which was originally inhabited by Khoikhoi herders and San hunter-gatherers. Enjoy a leisurely stroll around this quaint Victorian town to discover its charm and history, including the famous Lord Milner Hotel, where Cecil Rhodes, the first Minister of the Cape Colony, and the writer Edgar Wallace resided.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Arrive in Cape Town in the morning. Say goodbye to the train and its crew, and discover the most famous city in South Africa. Stroll along the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront or take the cableway to the top of the famous Table Mountain on an optional excursion. In the early afternoon, join the city tour through Cape Town. As the sun sets, enjoy the expansive views of the city from Signal Hill. The evening ends with a special dinner.

Accommodation: The Commodore Hotel or similar (3 nights)
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Enjoy a tour of two wineries in Stellenbosch with wine tasting and lunch

Meal: Breakfast, Lunch

Tour Chapmans Peak Drive, Cape of Good Hope, Boulder’s Beach (where you might see penguins) and Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Enjoy free time during the day and transfer to the airport in the evening.

Meals: Breakfast

Your flight departs early this morning.

Transportation: KLM Airlines

Dates & Prices

 

CABIN CATEGORY DOUBLE OCCUPANCY SINGLE OCCUPANCY
Elephant Category CAD $12,250 per person CAD $15,590 per person
Leopard Category CAD $14,890 per person Not available

Note: Single passengers booked in double occupancy cabins are limited to 10% of the total passengers travelling within the group.

DEPOSITS & PAYMENTS
FIRST DEPOSIT: CAD 2,500 per person at the time of booking
SECOND DEPOSIT: CAD 2,500 per person due on June 30, 2020
FINAL PAYMENT: Due on September 25, 2020

Note:

  1. Passenger names must match passport.
  2. Please ensure that passports are valid up till after six (6) months at last destination.
  3. No visa to South Africa and Namibia required for Canadian passport holders.
CANCELLATION CHARGES
From time of booking to April 23, 2020: CAD 2,500 per person
Between June 30 – September 24, 2020: CAD 5,000 per person
Between September 25th – date of departure: 100% of tour cost

AIR CANCELLATION PENALTIES ARE SUBJECT TO AIRLINE REGULATIONS

Accommodations


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