Kruger, Zulus and the Drakensberg
Day 1: Rendezvous at Johannesburg Airport at breakfast time. KE Land Only package services begin with the long drive to Kruger National Park. We drive due east on good roads directly to the reserve. Arriving into the Kruger National Park we have our first Big Game Safari drives. Overnight Southern Kruger campsite (with pool).
Day 2: We will have morning and late afternoon game drives in the Kruger National Park. During the heat of the day, we have free time at the camp, with the opportunity to relax at the campsite pool. Dinner around the camp fire. Overnight Southern Kruger campsite.
Day 3: Leaving Kruger we cross into Swaziland. We drive to the King of Swaziland's traditional hunting reserve, now the Hlane Game Reserve. In the afternoon, we set off on a walk (2-3hrs) with a local ranger into the Lebombo Mountains of the reserve. Overnight at a remote private campsite on the reserve.
Day 4: Today we enjoy a circular walk in the reserve with the local ranger looking for the game on the plains, with a very good chance of seeing Wildebeest, Zebra, Kudu, Impala and Warthog. The bird life is also a highlight in this reserve. We return to our campsite.
Day 5: Departing on foot, we walk back via a different route, to the main Hlane reserve campsite with our local ranger (3-4hrs). Here we set up camp and sit around a waterhole at sunset, looking out for rhino which come down to drink!
Day 6: After an early start we drive through the southern region of Swaziland, before re-entering South Africa into the Zululand heartland and the Kosi Bay Nature Reserve. Here we overnight in traditional reed huts. From Nov-Jan we can have an optional extra excursion to see the Leatherback turtles.
Day 7: Kosi Bay Nature Reserve covers a region of fertile estuaries, mangroves, dune forest and lakes, all of which we explore on foot today. We'll also visit the Kosi Bay river mouth where we can snorkel in the warm waters and watch the local fishermen in the estuary. Overnight in reed hut.
Day 8: Leaving Kosi Bay we drive to St Lucia. Our base for the next 2 nights is on the shores of Lake St Lucia, now a UNESCO world heritage site. Here we stay in apartments. This afternoon we have a boat ride on Lake St Lucia and a game walk with a ranger. Overnight St Lucia.
Day 9: We have a full day exploring the Umfolozi and Hluhluwe Game Reserve. This game reserve has prioritised rhino conservation. We learn about this and also hope to see some rhino in the reserve. On exiting the reserve we visit a traditional village to learn more about the Zulu culture. Overnight apartment St Lucia.
Day 10: We depart the apartments after breakfast and head inland, via Durban, Pietermaritzberg and Bergville, before reaching the Drakensberg. Arriving in the early afternoon, there's time to stretch our legs with a short walk above our campsite.
Day 11: A day for walking in the Royal Natal National Park, with a number of excellent walks to choose from, such as into the Tugela Gorge. There are opportunities for swimming and to see bushman paintings.
Day 12: We have a further day in the Drakensberg exploring some of the many trails here, such as Surprise ridge and the Cannibal cave. The mountain air is crisp and invigorating here and the views are splendid. Overnight campsite Drakensberg.
Day 13: After a leisurely breakfast and the chance of a short, final stroll around camp, we drive back to Johannesburg Airport in time for a late afternoon check in. KE Land Only package services end on arrival at the airport.