11 day kgalagadi transfrontier park & west coast picture

11 Day Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park & West Coast

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Departs From:                  Cape Town       

Ends:                            Cape Town

Length:                          11 Days

Accommodation:                Glamping & Lodge

Departure Dates:               Contact For Dates

 

Day 1 Brandvlei

We collect you from your accommodation in Cape Town very early in the morning and make our way to the small town of Brandvlei for our first night stop where we will stay on a farm 15 km outside of town. (Lunch and Dinner)

Day 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 Kgalagadi National Park

The Kgalagadi Transfrontier park lies in the large sand-filled basin in the west of the southern African subcontinent, known as the Kalahari. It covers almost one third of the area and forms what may be the largest sandveld area in the world. It stretches from 1 degree South in Zaire to 29 degrees Sin South Africa and from 14 degrees East in Angola to 28 degrees East in Zimbabwe. The term Kalahari was derived from the Kgalagadi word for 'the land which dried up', 'the dry land' or 'the thirstland' The Southern Kalahari is defined as the area to the south of the Bakalahari Schwelle (first described by Passarge [1904]), This is the indiscernible ridge that runs roughly from Gobabis in the north-east of Namibia to Lobatse in the south-east of Botswana. The Schwelle separates the Okwa and Hanahai river system in the north and the Nossob, A point at Twee Rivieren and Two Rivers in the south-west. The southern Kalahari slopes gently in a south-westerly direction from the Schwelle.

The Rivers

Both the Nossob (meaning dark clay) and the Auob (meaning bitter water) rivers have their sources in the Anas Mountains near Windhoek, Namibia. They flow South-easterly joining in the former Kalahari Gemsbok Park (6Km north of Twee Rivieren) and continue as the Nossob to the Molopo and Kuruman rivers 60km to the south. The Molopo River with its origin near Mafikeng, no longer reaches the Orange River as sand dunes near Noeneput have blocked its course for at least the last 100 years. These rivers are predominantly dry, only flowing for short periods after abnormally high rainfall. The Auob last flowed in 1973 and 1974, the Nossob in 1964. The Auob and Nossob rivers differ in that the Auob cuts a steep sided, narrow valley (100-500m wide) along its course while the Nossob flows in a shallow, sandy trough until it cuts through the calcrete near Kameelsleep windmill. The Polentswa, a fossil river, joins the Nossob River near Grootbrak windmill. The ancient river is now represented by a string of pans that run North to beyond the border of the former Gemsbok National Park.

The Sands

Five groups of Kalahari Sands are recognized and range in colour from red in the dunes, through to yellow brown on the pans and riverbeds. The sands are predominantly of Aeolian origin, emanating from within the basin itself. In the Southwest, the sands are piled into vegetated linear or self-dunes. They break down into a gentler undulating terrain about 40Km east of the Nossob River. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, 1 Game walk, 1 Night game drive, Daily game drives)

Day 7 Augrabies Falls

Augrabies Falls National Park is a national park located around the Augrabies Falls, about 120km west of Upington. It was established in 1966. The Augrabies Falls National Park covers an area of 820 km² and stretches along the Orange River. The area is very arid. The waterfall is about 60 metres high and is awe-inspiring when the river is in flood. The gorge below the fall’s averages about 240 m deep and runs for 18 kilometres. The gorge provides an impressive example of erosion into a granitic basement. The original Khoikhoi people named the waterfall Ankoerebis, meaning the "place of big noises". The Trekboers who later settled in the area derived the name Augrabies. There are many deposits of alluvial diamonds along the Orange River and legend has it that the biggest cache of diamonds in the world lies in the swirl-hole eroded into the granite at the foot of the waterfall by the thundering waters. On the menu of plant species is the enigmatic Quiver tree or Kokerboom (Aloe dichotoma). Traditionally, the Khoisan hunters made their quivers from this tree which dates back thousands of years, and which produces vivd yellow flowers in May and June. The Augrabies Falls National Park offers an ancient landscape that will take you back in time to the world of the first hunter-gatherers. Just as they did thousands of years ago, if you sit silently, you might be treated to the sight of a beautiful pair of klipspringers grazing - all the while keeping alert to the slightest sign of trouble from any of the predators, including leopards, jackals and the African wild cat. The klipspringers are not the only ones that are preyed upon. The park is the natural habitat for other antelope species such as steenbok, springbok, gemsbok, kudu and eland. You will hopefully see them all as you explore the park. Complete your visit with a bird's eye view of the park from the top of the Moon Rock - a vast 'whaleback' dome which is a prominent landmark of Augrabies Falls. Walking to the summit will give one of the best views of the park and its surroundings. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner) 

Day 8, 9 (Augrabies Falls to Hondeklip Bay)

Hondeklip Bay is a coastal village in the Namakwa district of theNorthern Cape province of South Africa. It lies about 95 km southwest of the district capital Springbok. This translates to Hondeklipbaai in Afrikaans, which means dog stone bay. The village is named after a huge rock which is shaped like a dog and guards over the sleepy Namaqua town. Hondeklip Bay was originally used as a harbour to export copper ore from the mines around Springbok but was later surpassed by Port Nolloth, which had a safer harbour as well as a railway line. Today Hondeklip Bay is a popular regional holiday destination and serves the fishing and diamond-mining community. South of Hondeklip Bay lies what remains of the wreck of the Aristea, which was built in Scotland as a fishing vessel. In 1934, the Aristea served as a minesweeper during World War 2. Tragically, the Aristea ran aground on 4 July 1945 on its maiden voyage as trawler. Fortunately, there was only one loss of life. In 1685, Governor Simon van der Stel discovered the Namaqua region’s rich copper ores. Unfortunately, there wasn’t a suitable export harbour, until 1846 when Thomas Grace, a ship captain, discovered a small, natural harbour. He named the village after the granite rock that guards like a dog over the town: Hondeklip Bay. Copper mines began production in 1850 – 1852. These mines used Hondeklip Bay as the most suitable harbour and the first 11-ton copper ores were shipped from Hondeklip Bay to Wallis with the Bosphorus in 31 August 1852. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner) 

Day 10

Nestled between the Atlantic Ocean and the Bobbejaan Mountain lies this hotspot for surfers around the world. Elands Bay is 95 km northwest of Piketberg and 70km from Velddrif and this is where the magnificent Verlorenvlei, a natural marsh and sanctuary for 240 bird species, flows into the Atlantic Ocean. The bay is a prime whale and dolphin viewing venue between July and September when migrating Southern Right whales and Heaviside Dolphins can be seen in large numbers. Throughout the year, playful dolphins can be seen ‘surfing the waves’ and, on occasion, Orcas (Killer Whales) can also be seen. The Bobbejaan Mountain cliffs project into the sea at Baboon Point and a large rock shelter in the cliff is adorned with primitive San paintings. Excavations at a rock shelter in the cliffs indicate habitation by man 15 000 years ago. Elands Bay Cave is a rock art site dating back 10 000 years. The mild weather ensures year-round outdoor activities, walks and hikes, mountain-biking, mountaineering and 4x4 trails, rubber-ducking, surfing, horse-riding, fishing and birding – and more! Pristine sand dunes, with great picnic spots. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner) 

Day 11

Unfortunately, this is the last day of your Safari and after a scrumptious West Coast breakfast we make our way back to Cape Town to drop you off at your accommodation in the late afternoon. (Breakfast, Lunch)

What’s Included  

  • Registered guide fluent in English and German
  • All accommodation, park and safari fees as per itinerary
  • Breakfast and dinner daily as per itinerary
  • Selected beverages
  • All transport in a fully equipped 4x4 vehicle
  • Fuel
  • Activities as per itinerary

What’s Excluded  

  • All flights and visas and border fees
  • Personal & medical insurance
  • Personal belongings
  • Tips, curios and any optional excursions and activities
  • Passports
  • Vaccinations

 

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