DC Celebration 26

Springbok Classic Air Newsletter

SteCreations

Coast to coast Safari

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Overview

Discover the glory of Southern Africa, from the wonders of The Skeleton Coast in the West to the turquoise treasure that is the Bazaruto Archipelago in the East. On this exotic tour you will gain an in-depth understanding of the history, geography, people, wildlife and diversity of the region - taking in the Namib Desert, Chobe National Park, Victoria Falls, South Luangwa valley, and Bazaruto Archipelago in 18 breathtaking days.


Routing
 
  • Lanseria – Madikwe
  • Madikwe – Luderitz
  • Luderitz – Sossusvlei
  • Sossusvlei – Swakopmund
  • Swakopmund – Twyfelfontein
  • Twyfelfontein – Chobe
  • Chobe – Victoria falls
  • Victoria Falls – Mfuwe
  • Mfuwe – Bazaruto
  • Bazaruto - JIA

Ocean to ocean safari objectives:
 
  • To gain an in-depth understanding of the history, geography, peoples, wildlife and diversity of the Chobe National Park, the South Luangwa, National Park, the Bazaruto Archipelago.
  • To explore the scenic wonders of the Skeleton Coast and Sossusvlei as well as the Damaraland, showing the rich contrasts of the Namib Desert
  • Experience the Victoria Falls World Heritage Site.

Highlights


Discover the contrasts and changing moods of the world’s oldest desert, from the sand and windswept ghost town of Kolmanskop, to the stark beauty of the Sossusvlei and its gigantic sand dunes, to the “burnt mountain” and “organ pipes” and the pre – historic Bushman carvings of the Damaraland. Discover the wide variety of diverse habitats in Chobe National Park, which is home to a breathtaking variety of animals and birds, including 45 000 elephant, the highest concentration in the world, and huge herds of buffalo. Experience the might and power of the Victoria Falls, one of the seven natural wonders of the world. Gain an in-depth understanding of the South Luangwa area in the heart of the Zambian Bush, with its unique ox-bow lagoons. Explore Bazaruto Island, the largest of the Bazaruto Archipelago, a jewel-like cluster of tropical islands with clear warm water, surrounded by pristine beaches and rich coral reefs. Proclaimed a national park in 1971, Bazaruto is a nature lover's paradise, with an abundance of bird life and freshwater lakes complete with a breeding population of crocodiles. The protected reefs surrounding the island support dolphin, dugong, game fish and giant lobster.


Rate Includes:
 
  • Springbok Classic Air Voyage Manager Round trip flights by DC-3 from Lanseria to JIA
  • Deluxe accommodations throughout Refreshments on board the DC-3
  • All transfers
  • Ghost Town tour at Luderitz
  • Wildlife viewing activities at Madikwe, Chobe, Mfuwe.
  • All game park entrance fees
  • Entrance fee to Victoria Falls
  • Non-motorized water sports at Indigo Bay
  • All lodging taxes.
  • Emergency medical evacuation insurance
  • Airport departure taxes

Rate Excludes:
 
  • Drinks (with exception of refreshments on the DC-3)
  • All items of a personal nature.
  • Visa fees Personal insurance

Day 1/2


After your arrival at Johannesburg International Airport, you are welcomed by the friendly staff of Springbok Classic Air and transferred to the awaiting classic DC-3 for the short flight to your first stop on this voyage of discovery, Madikwe. As you climb away from JIA you leave the hustle and bustle of Johannesburg behind. The Madikwe Game Reserve belongs to the latest park developments in South Africa. It was opened in 1991 and comprises 75000 hectares of bush land north of the small town Groot-Marico up to the Botswana border. It is currently the fourth largest game reserve in South Africa and one of the best-kept secrets.

The terrain is mainly open grasslands and bushveld plains, interspersed with rocky outcrops and single mountains. Madikwe is regarded as one of the finest conservation areas in Africa, offering all the major species, including lion, leopard, elephant, and buffalo, both white and black rhino along with almost all the plains antelope species. A special feature of Madikwe lies in its unique location, a transition zone on the edges of the Kalahari, where a number of rare species occur naturally. The climate is generally mild to hot, but winter nights can be cold. Over 350 species of birds have been recorded at Madikwe including many interesting raptors. Madikwe creates an aura of its own - an almost mystical splendor and a unique escape for those who seek to experience a dawn view of untamed Africa.


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Day 3

Time to board and the flight in the timeless Douglas DC-3 “Dakota” via a breathtaking flight, following the great Fish River Canyon to our first stop on this grand voyage of adventure, Luderitz, on the Skeleton coast of Namibia.

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This hazy Atlantic-coast town has immense appeal for its barren beauty and solitude. Many charming and fine buildings reveal its colonial history as the first German settlement in South West Africa. Goerke House is the most impressive and sits with a fine view, on top of Diamond Hill. It is open to the public and well worth a visit for its fine Art Deco interior of stained glass and wood paneling. Unfortunately the bride fresh from Germany for whom it was built in 1909, could not handle the bleak and windy isolation and left, with her husband after only 2 years, never to return. The best view of the town and the working harbour is from the peninsula of land that juts out and helps to form one of the best natural harbours along the Namibian coast. To the south of Luderitz along the coast is Diaz Point, where a big stone cross commemorates the Portuguese discovery of the area. You might see Jackass Penguins and seals in the cold Benguela current which brings a chill to the wind too. Close by is an old whaling station, where the rusted blubber boiling pots look like beautiful bizarre sculptures standing stark amongst encroaching pale rippling sand.

Day 4


As you awaken to a scrumptious breakfast, and prepare to depart to the airfield for your flight you detour via the ghost town of Kolmanskop for an hour or two of sight seeing.
 
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In 1908, Luderitz was plunged into diamond fever. People rushed into the Namib desert hoping to make an easy fortune and within two years, a town, complete with a casino, school, hospital and exclusive residential buildings, had been established in the barren sandy desert. The diamond-bearing gravel was screened and washed in huge recovery plants. Over 1 000 kg of diamonds were extracted before World War I. However, the amount of gemstones greatly diminished after the war. Furthermore, considerably larger diamonds were found to the south near Oranjemund, causing Kolmanskop to become a ghost town.

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After your departure out of Luderitz with the coastline and it’s ghosts disappearing behind you, it is time to head inland to the heart of the great desert, to the Sossusvlei area, after touching down in the dunes, and enjoying a welcome drink, time to get settled in the lodge before departing on a drive to explore the stark and barren beauty of the area, and enjoy sundowners and a gala feast under the stars, between the ever moving dunes.

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Sossusvlei Lodge is situated in the northern foothills of the vast, privately owned Namib Rand Nature Reserve (184 000 hectares). In the reserve, the eerie beautiful Namib Desert has been painstakingly reclaimed for conservation to create the largest private nature reserve in Southern Africa, exclusive to lodge residents. It's a world of vast space, far horizons, desert-scapes and jagged mountain heights. The reserve lies on the eastern boundary of the Namib-Naukluft National Park.The reserve is covered by wind-sculpted dunes, the highest in the world, and 700-million year-old mountains. The valleys and slopes are home to a unique gathering of wildlife, some of which are found nowhere else on earth. Sightings including Hartmann's zebra, Grant's golden mole, Oryx, spotted hyena, African wildcat and springbok. This is big sky country, and home to more than 115 bird species, including Sociable Weavers, Black Eagles and Martial Eagles


Day 5


A short transfer to the lodge’s airstrip and on your way to Swakopmund, via a low level flight up the Skeleton Coast of Namibia, taking in the changing moods and hues of this land from your perch high above the changing landscape.
Skeleton Coast, a strange name. It is called that way because there are a lot of skeletons of shipwrecks and of human beings. Because of the rough sea, a lot of ships ran ashore. The shipwrecked men who reached the shore thought that they were saved. Unfortunately they landed on one of the driest places on earth with the nearest village over 200 km away. They all died of thirst.

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As the port town of Swakopmund appears on the nose of the DC-3, the staff of the Hansa Hotel is ready to greet you and whisk you away to your accommodation for the night.


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Swakopmund, Namibia’s second biggest town and traditional “summer capital”, is one of the most surreal places in this surreal country. You approach the town through the endless expanses of the Namib Desert, one of the world’s largest wilderness areas. Then, through the mists (it is almost always misty in the morning and late afternoon) Bavarian spires and elaborate Germanic architecture rise through the fog banks. The boom of the surf on the notorious Skeleton Coast is an ever-present reminder of the icy Atlantic Ocean beyond. The town is an eclectic mixture of Bohemian and Bavarian, home to an intriguing mix of artists, hippies, strait-laced descendants of German settlers, stately Herero women in Victorian dress, and hard bitten miners, game rangers, safari operators and fishermen. Swakopmund exudes romance and history, a rich cultural melting pot of old and new.


Day 6


With a hearty breakfast and the German architecture, behind you, once again it is skyward bound for another unforgettable flight, Northwards now to Twyfelfontein, in the culturally rich Damaraland region.
Some 90 kilometres west of Khorixas,lies Twyfelfontein ("Doubtful Spring"), with one of the most extensive galleries of rock engravings in the world. They aren't really paintings, but have been done by cutting through the hard surface layer of sandstone. More than 2000 petroglyphes have been counted here, and in 1952, the valley of Twyfelfontein was proclaimed a National Monument. The rock engravings are found on a number of smooth rock surfaces and most of them depict animals and their tracks. Scientists have estimated their ages to vary between 1000 and 10000 years: The majority agrees on an age of about 6000 years.
 
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Day 7


Awaking to a pristine new day, it is time to explore the wealth of the region as you board the vehicle for a day long excursion to get to know the Bushman Carvings, from thousands of years ago, the Organ Pipes and "Petrified Forest" with about 300 million year-old tree trunks.
Some 150 kilometers south of Khorixas lies Namibia's highest mountain; the Brandberg massif, with the 2573m high Königstein as its highest peak and the Burnt Mountain, these natural wonders, are all a legacy of a volcano, now extinct for thousands of years.

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Day 8/9


As you climb into the azure blue African sky, and after fond farewells to Namibia and its diversity, we set course for the lush bush of Botswana, and the Chobe National Park. After a stop at Mapacha, in the heart of the Caprivi Strip for customs formalities, we follow the mighty Zambezi river along its winding route, marveling at the landscape changing mood and color, from the desert to the lush green bush, with its teeming wildlife.


Day 10


Following the course of the mighty Zambezi River, today it is time to take the short flight from Kasane airport to one of the Seven Wonders of the World, Victoria Falls and the sheer opulent luxury of the Royal Livingstone Hotel.
David Livingstone explored this land of potent beauty and discovered one of the seven natural wonders of the world. In his footprints, only moments away from the mighty Zambezi River with the dramatic torrent of the Victoria Falls as its natural milieu, a magnificent Resort has been created as a testament to his discovery and in reverence to the splendor of this World Heritage site. Journey to this magical place and witness the greatest mass of falling water on earth as it plunges down a sheer rock face, spraying its mystical mist hundreds of meters in the air. The awesome Victoria Falls is much closer to you here - literally on the doorstep of The Falls Resort - it feels as if you could reach out and touch it, as it plummets into the chasm far below.
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There are few appropriate superlatives that have not already been applied to this magnificent natural wonder of the world; in many ways it defies description. So vast are the falls and their setting that it is difficult to grasp their true grandeur and for this reason, they are perhaps best seen from the air. The Victoria Falls offer an inescapable closeness to the natural elements. The towering column of spray when the river is high, the thunder of the falling water, the terrifying abyss that separates Zimbabwe from Zambia, the forest - lined, placid, tranquil lagoons upstream in which hippo and deadly crocodiles lurk.
 
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Day 11


As you climb away from the mighty falls in the ever-classic DC-3, it is now time to head deep into the heart of the Zambian bush, Mfuwe.This is a unique lodge situated in the South Luangwa National Park, and your flight there will have you enthralled as you cross the rich tapestry of the heart of the Zambian Bush, with its many colors, sites and moods. When the Luangwa is in flood the hairpin bends along its tortuous route are progressively eroded away until the main stream cuts through one of its loops, leaving behind attractive ox-bow lagoons which are one of the most picturesque aspects of the valley


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Experts have dubbed South Luangwa as one of the greatest wildlife sanctuaries in the world, and not without reason. The concentration of game around the Luangwa River and its ox bow lagoons is among the most intense in Africa.Spend the afternoon, settling down and having sundowners, overlooking the beautiful Luangwa River.


Day 12/13


Rise to the sounds and textures of the African bush and then make your way down for a breakfast fit for a king.Spend the day encountering the freedom and spirit of the real Africa as she was...


untouched ~ unspoiled ~ unforgettable


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Wind the day down with an evening Game drive and dinner beneath the African stars.


Day 14


Rise for your onward journey after another hearty breakfast and fond farewells to Mfuwe.
As you race the African sun into the sky, you leave behind you, the vast African continent and wing your way to the crystal waters of the Indian Ocean watching the carpet below you change its mood, from the hues of the bush to the vibrant colors of the sub tropical region and the brilliant blue of the Indian Ocean, as you begin the descent to your Island playground. Destination Bazaruto.

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Indigo Bay is an exquisite island resort, situated on the idyllic and pristine Bazaruto Island. It offers visitors the quintessential Indian Ocean island holiday, as well as a gateway to the un-spoilt beauty of the Bazaruto Archipelago. All chalets and main living areas at Indigo Bay Island Resort Hotel are constructed of natural materials like reed, thatch and wood to blend harmoniously with the perfect surroundings. The resort offers exclusive luxury island accommodation of the highest standards, yet is understated and elegant with an emphasis on making the most of the superb location on the golden shores of Bazaruto Island.


Day 15/16


The day can be spent relaxing, soaking up the sun, on the palm lined beaches.Or keeping cool with a variety of water sports, maybe an excursion to one of the historically cultural sights.The choice is yours.
 
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Day 17


Alas, all too soon it is time to bid farewell to Bazaruto and the crystal waters of the warm Indian Ocean, as the faithful DC-3 sets course south bound for Johannesburg International Airport, to your connecting flight home. As the wheels of the ever reliable DC-3 touch down at Jhb Int Airport, and you make your way home you take with you, memories and experiences that will last you a life time.


We hope you will take the time out from the rush and bustle of the life to do it the Springbok Classic Air way.