I had wanted to travel to Africa and specifically South Africa for my entire life. I had always been fascinated by the animals, the landscape, and the culture. But for some reason, my trip to South Africa came quite late in my world travels. As I was still a little timid about traveling through Africa alone, I decided to travel through a tour company. This proved to be a great decision, as my tour was fantastic and my guide was extremely friendly and knowledgeable and helped with my photography. Thank you to Calcustar for helping me to achive this trip! I owe you Scott!
My tour group had ten people in it, and the tour I selected covered South Africa, Botswana, and Zambia. I loved the tour company I selected as they were all about responsible and eco-tourism. I flew into Johannesburg two days before the tour began so that I’d have some time to explore the city on my own.
It was a nice way to start the trip and get acclimated to South Africa. I spent most of the two days wondering the streets and exploring all the city had to offer. I visited the Apartheid museum which was an interesting look into South Africa’s recent history. On the third day, I met up with the tour group and we had dinner together in the city.
The next day, we woke up early and traveled the Panorama Route, stopping at Blyde River Canyon to see the Greater Kruger region below. Once we entered the park, we headed out for evening and morning game drives to spot Africa’s big five: the Lion, African Elephant, Cape Buffalo, Leopard, and Black Rhinoceros.
We spotted lions, elephants, and buffalo, getting quite close to each. I got some great pictures of all the wildlife, and when using my zoom it appeared that I was right next to them. The wildlife continued when we visited Polokwane on the fourth day of the trip. We saw a plethora of animals; it was almost overwhelming trying to look at everything at once.On day five we crossed the border into Botswana.
While traveling through the Nata region, we ran into cattle herders tending to their stock along the road. The next day we reached the great Victoria Falls, which was one of my favorite highlights of the whole trip. The falls are locally referred to as ‘Mosi oa Tunya’ or ‘the smoke that thunders’.
While at the falls, I decided to try bungee jumping for the first time which was thrilling and terrifying all at once. It definitely made for an experience that I will never forget. We then crossed into Chobe National Park in Botswana for a fish eagle cruise. The cruise was amazing because we got to see the large water animals such as hippos, crocodiles, and elephants all enjoying the water and pretty well ignoring us. The next day we continued our water adventure by exploring the Okavango Delta by mokoro, a dugout canoe.
That night we got to camp out on a remote island and wake to the sounds of the wetlands. Camping in the middle of the wildlife was quite the experience and really made me realize that I was in the middle of the African wilderness. When we returned to Johannesburg on our last day, it was quite sad to see the trip end. But it was definitely an adventure and a great way to experience all that Southern Africa has to offer.