This safari tour will depart from the city of Durban. We suggest guests fly in the day before if this is possible (accommodation can be arranged), however if they arrive before midday they can leave immediately from the airport.
Day 1 – Arrival Day
9:00AM – Meet and greet
Meet your EST guide and vehicle as your safari adventure is about to begin! Travel north to the surrounds of the rolling hills of Kwa Zulu Natal. The beauty is not only to be seen, it is also to be known as your guide explains the fascinating history of the area. Hear about the local tribes and their conflict with the arriving colonist, how the sugar cane farms came to be and the resulting Indian influence in the province.
12:00PM – Arrive at reserve
Enter the Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Game Reserve and immerse yourself within the Safari. Your private safari guide will use their years of expertise to find the myriad of wildlife that call this reserve their home. All this time, making your way toward camp, already compiling your bucket list of must see animals as you go.
13:30PM – Check in to accommodation
Arrive at your camp where you shall be situated for the next two days. It’s time to check in and get comfortable. Bear in mind you should always stay alert; there are game that might be walking right past your bungalow at any given time. Antelope, warthog and even zebra are popular on the lawns, giving you the chance to see them without moving very far at all.
15:00PM – Afternoon game drive
Leave for your afternoon game drive. As the heat of the day starts to wear off, so does the suns temporary hold on the animals subside, leaving you with a better chance of encountering them. The herbivores goal is to replenish themselves at the watering hole, while the predators are getting ready for what the cover of the nighttime brings. You will stop at a beautifully scenic spot along the way, for some snacks and a sun-downer (a thirst quenching beverage as the sun sets over the African landscape). Then it is back to camp before the darkness sets in.
19:00PM – Dinner
Dinner will be prepared by your guide in true South African tradition, cooked over hot coals under the African star-lit sky. If it is on the cards for you tonight, perhaps luck shall be on your side and you may receive a visit from some nocturnal animals such as hyena or genet cat.
Day 2 – Full Day Safari
Dawn – Early morning game drive
An early start allows you to make the most of the day, which shall begin with a glorious African sunrise. However, that is not the only thing worth rising early for. Animals, such as lion and leopard are mostly nocturnal and the trick is to find them in action, getting their last minute business attended to before the heat slows them down. Not to worry though, the morning will be made easier with a steaming cup of coffee and a traditional SA biscuit (Rusk) to fire up those engines of yours. After a few hours of game viewing, giving you the opportunity to grow your checklist rapidly, you will stop along the way for breakfast snacks (biscuit, yoghurt, fruit and muffins) and another cup of steaming coffee/ tea.
11:00AM – Brunch
Your safari shall continue for a few more hours before it is time to stop for a cooked brunch on the banks of a tranquil river, under the shelter of a shady tree. With full tummies, make your way back to camp where your time is your own so spend at your leisure.
16:00PM – Afternoon game drive
Once you have worked up an appetite you will have lunch before heading off on a sunset game drive. As the ‘golden hour’ approaches the predators begin to stir, hopefully giving you the perfect photo opportunity in the soft light.
19:00PM – Dinner
Return to camp at sunset for another special meal cooked on the ‘Braai’ (BBQ). Magies vol, oogies toe (mouths full, eyes close) as they say in the local Afrikaans language. It is now time to rest after your long day of game watching.
Day 3 – Morning Safari & St. Lucia Wetland Park
Dawn – Early game drive
Much like the previous day an early rise for a short game drive is on this morning’s schedule. It is a shorter drive as you are moving accommodation today. Your guide will be transporting you to another area within the park for an important change of scenery. This lends you the chance to experience something different and according to your guide’s vast knowledge of the habitats, they may assist you in trying to find those special creatures missing from your list. Coffee/ tea and breakfast snacks will be served out on your drive again and on return to camp a quick cooked breakfast shall be prepared.
10:00AM – Check out and onto St. Lucia
Check out, and do some game viewing on your way to the exit gates. Drive one hour towards the coast and the magnificent town of St. Lucia, the only town in the world completely surrounded by a national reserve, The iSimangaliso Wetland Reserve.
12:00PM – Lunch and explore
Once you have arrived in this quaint little coastal town, time is your own to explore at your will. Sit down for some lunch at your chosen local restaurant (own account) thereafter, check into your BnB accommodation.
14:00PM – iSimangaliso game drive
Enter the iSimangaliso Wetland Reserve. Here, you will spend the afternoon viewing wildlife and an array of stunning vistas. Visit the protected beach of Cape Vidal and feel the sand crunch between your toes, if you feel up to it maybe a dip in the warm Indian Ocean. Next stop is the Catalina boardwalk on Lake St. Lucia. Sit back and relax while you sip on a refreshing beverage as the sun sets over the lake. Experience hippo, crocodile and the incredible birdlife whistle by before returning back to your BnB.
19:00PM – Dinner in town
After a quick freshen up back at your accommodation we return to town for a scrumptious dinner and a chance to experience St Lucia by night (own account).
Day 4 – Final Day
7:30 – Morning at leisure
After a few days of early morning starts, this morning is yours to do with as you please. Take a walk down to the estuary mouth or amble around town, enjoy the gardens or simply have a lie in. When you are ready there shall be a cooked breakfast at the BnB, waiting for you to devour.
10:00AM – Hippo and Crocodile boat cruise
Swop the land for water as you take a two hour Hippo and Crocodile boat cruise on the estuary and Lake System. Get up close and personal with the hundreds of hippo that call this water course their home, offering you not only the opportunity to learn more about these magnificent creatures but the chance to capture them in photograph.
12:00PM – Departure
It’s time to check out and make your way back to Durban.
- Guided transfers and return to Durban.
- Accommodation, Reserve camp Bungalows (with En-suite bathrooms). BnB in St. Lucia.
- Meals whilst on Safari: 2 dinners, 3 breakfast, 2 snack lunch, limited refreshments and tea/ coffee and breakfast snacks for entire time.
- Game drives conducted in air-conditioned mini-bus, no limit.
- Conservation (entrance) fees to Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Game Reserve and St Lucia Wetlands.
– Hippo and Crocodile boat cruise
- Gratuities for any service you may receive
- Soft drinks and alcohol
- Meals where indicated
- Optional extra activities, open vehicle sunset game drive available