Kruger National Park Safari

  • 10 Days
  • 12 People Max

    6 - 12 guests

  • Activity Level 2
    • Activity Level 2

      On the Move

      Sure, I own some hiking boots, they're even worn in, but they don't go on long trips. I like my creature comforts and I like to give a range of activities a go.

    Read more about the Active Range

  • Trip Start: Johannesburg
  • Trip End: Cape Town
Big 5 Kruger and Cape Town Mkombe

On the steps of the Big 5

Follow the steps of the Big 5 on our Kruger National Park safari adventure Johannesburg to Cape Town. This trip is the perfect way to immerse yourself into Africa’s wilderness and bring you a breath away from an impressive array of wildlife. You’ll track the steps of the Big 5 in the Greater Kruger National Park with expert safari guides and enjoy a mix of remote safari camps and lodges around the renowned national park of South Africa.  

   This trip is operated by Active Adventures.

Kruger National Park Safari ~ Itinerary

Trip Start: Johannesburg Trip End: Cape Town
  • Day 1Arrive in Johannesburg, travel to Blyde River Canyon Lodge

  • Day 2Hike the foothills of the Northern Drakensberg Mountains

  • Day 3Transfer to Makalali Private Game Reserve, game viewing activities

  • Day 4Game viewing activities in Makalali Private Game Reserve

  • Day 5Game viewing activities in Makalali Private Game Reserve

  • Day 6Morning transfer, Fly to Cape Town

  • Day 7Cape Town city tour, hike Table Mountain

  • Day 8Cycle through Franschhoek winelands, wine tastings

  • Day 9Stellenbosch Foodie walk, afternoon to relax

  • Day 10Return home, or get ready for your next adventure

  • Day 1

    Arrive in Johannesburg, travel to Blyde River Canyon Lodge

    Your trip leader will welcome you early in the morning in the international arrivals hall of Oliver Tambo Airport in Johannesburg. After gathering with the rest of your group, we’ll make our way northeast via the Panorama Route, a scenic route steeped in natural beauty and history. While traveling through Mpumalanga province, we’ll stop along the way to explore places like Lisbon Falls, Bourke's Luck Potholes, Three Rondavels, Graskop Gorge Lift and Forest, with lunch at The Lift Café at Graskop. We’ll arrive in the late afternoon at Blyde River Canyon Lodge, your accommodation for the next two nights. Located alongside the sparkling waters of the Blyde River and the Drakensberg Mountains,the lodge sits on an 85-hectare botanical reserve and will be our base while we explore the area tomorrow.

    Blyde River Canyon Lodge (Lunch, Dinner)

  • Day 2

    Hike the foothills of the Northern Drakensberg Mountains

    Blyde River Canyon reveals profound evidence of some of the earth’s most significant events that took place more than 200 million years ago. Named by the Voortrekkers in 1844, the Blyde River Canyon is the largest green canyon in the world, spanning more than 26 kilometers and reaching depths more than 800 meters. Today you’ll embark on a half-day hike into the Blyde River Canyon from below the majestic Drakensberg Mountains, starting with a 30-minute transfer to the Cape Vulture Conservancy. The 1,800-hectacre conservancy has a wide variety of plains game, stunning flora, impressive rock formations, and a dazzling array of birdlife – including 650 breeding pairs of Cape Vultures. The hike concludes with a harvest table lunch set in a private garden with views of the mountains and the citrus fruits growing all around. After indulging in an array of breads, cheeses, meats, fresh fruits, a variety of salads and dessert, you’ll return to your accommodation.

    Blyde River Canyon Lodge (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

    Hiking: 10 kilometers (6 miles), 3 hours

  • Day 3

    Transfer to Makalali Private Game Reserve, game viewing activities

    Enjoy a relaxing morning before heading to the Makalali Private Game Reserve, where our Lodge for the next three nights is located. Makalali Private Game Lodge is situated on a 26 000 hectare conservancy in the Hoedspruit region, west of the famous Kruger National Park. The Makalali Private Game Reserve is a 25,000-hectacre private game reserve in the triangle between Hoedspruit, Phalaborwa and Tzaneen. With no fences between the national park and the private game reserves, wildlife is able to roam freely. The reserve is prime “Big 5” territory, with previously extirpated species including lion, elephant, rhino, hippo, cheetah, hyena and disease-free buffalo, being reintroduced. Makalali makes a great safari destination for wildlife enthusiasts, photographers, and bird watchers alike. After a preview of what’s to come in the days ahead, we’ll head back to freshen up before dinner and enjoy a sundowner with some good company around the fire pit. Rest up tonight – your first full day of game driving is tomorrow!

    Makalali Private Game Lodge (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

  • Day 4

    Game viewing activities in Makalali Private Game Reserve

    Start your morning at sunrise with a refreshing cup of coffee and light snack before setting off on our first full-day game drive. Today’s game drive takes us through the Makalali Private Game Reserve in search of the Big 5 and all the other animals who call the area home. Our knowledgeable local guides are experts at deciding which areas of the wilderness to focus our attention on and at which times of the day – all with the utmost safety in mind. Return to the lodge for breakfast, followed by a few hours of free time. We’ll regroup for a late lunch before heading back out for another 3-hour game drive, extending into the early evening – a great time to see some of the big cats that start to prowl at night. A traditional dinner await you afterwards, before you fall asleep under the stars.

    Makalali Private Game Lodge (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

  • Day 5

    Game viewing activities in Makalali Private Game Reserve

    Another full day of game driving awaits us today! Your guides may head back to areas where you may have encountered animals yesterday, or you may explore new areas. The day will run similarly to yesterday, with an early start, coffee, and a light snack before heading out to look for the early risers. Lions are most active in the early morning and at sunset, as they rest for up to 20 hours per day! You’ll head back to the lodge for breakfast, leisurely midday relaxation time, and lunch before heading back out to explore the area one last time. We’ll have a stop for sundowners and some snacks before heading back to the lodge for a hot shower, and our final delicious dinner together before we head to the city tomorrow!

    Makalali Private Game Lodge (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

  • Day 6

    Morning transfer, Fly to Cape Town

    After an early breakfast at Honeyguide Khoka Moya Camp, it will be time to say farewell to the savannah and transfer to Hoedspruit Airport for your flight to Cape Town. Upon arrival, you’ll be transferred to your hotel, and the afternoon is yours to explore as you wish. Tomorrow starts with a tour of the city, so you can choose to just take it easy this afternoon in a cafe or at your hotel, before re-grouping for dinner at Bilboa Restaurant. Tomorrow you’ll get to know South Africa’s legislative capital city - a little known fact is that South Africa has three capital cities, the other two being the administrative and judicial capital cities.

    The Cape Milner Hotel, Cape Town (Breakfast, Dinner)

  • Day 7

    Cape Town city tour, hike Table Mountain

    Today you’ll embark on a walking tour highlighting the dramatic history of Cape Town. You’ll visit the bustling streets of the city, old buildings and squares, and learn about the story of Dutch and British rule, slavery and apartheid, freedom and democracy. Highlights of the tour include the Greenmarket Square, Adderley Street and flower sellers, Grand Parade, City Hall and Castle of Hood Hope, the story of District Six and Bo-Kaap (Malay Quarter), Slavery precinct (Slave Lodge, Slave Tree Site, Church Square), and Company’s Garden (Parliament, Tuynhuys, St George’s Cathedral). You’ll enjoy a relaxed lunch by the waterfront before heading for Table Mountain, where you’ll have the chance to ascend either by cable car or on a guided hike offering brilliant views over Cape Town to Camps Bay and the 12 Apostles. If you’re not out of breath by then, you’ll have the option to continue to the highest point before coming down by cable car, enjoying 360-degree views on the way. This day will conclude with a gourmet dinner at GOLD Restaurant. This 14-course set menu is a ‘taste safari’ that will transport you from Table Mountain to Timbuktu. The culinary experience is accompanied by interactive traditional entertainment.

    The Cape Milner Hotel, Cape Town (Breakfast, Lunch)

    Hiking: 2.5 kilometers (1.6 miles), 2-4 hours, elevation + 800 meters (2625 feet), down via cable car

  • Day 8

    Cycle through Franschhoek winelands, wine tastings

    After breakfast, we’ll drive two hours to Franschhoek, where you’ll set off on a leisurely cycling tour. This picture-perfect town was founded by the French Huguenots in the late 1600s and still retains its French charm in its café-lined streets and boutique atmosphere, with plenty of art galleries, cheese factories, and wine estates. Surrounded by the dramatic Groot Drakenstein Mountains, it is home to internationally acclaimed wines from nearby estates such as La Motte, Moreson, and Graham Beck. This cycling tour will have you exploring the scenic back roads of the winelands while indulging in a bit of wine tasting. After some refreshing time at the hotel pool, you’ll head back to town for a group dinner at Rueben’s, an exquisite glass-fronted eatery with a sophisticated dining offering. Franschhoek is a culinary capital in South Africa, boasting numerous award-winning restaurants. Enjoy finding out why over tonight’s dinner.

    The Cape Milner Hotel, Cape Town (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

    Biking: 2-3 hours, leisurely

  • Day 9

    Stellenbosch Foodie walk, afternoon to relax

    This morning you’ll head to Stellenbosch to walk the town on a half day ‘foodie tour,’ exploring all the famous cafes, art galleries, historical sites and other delights that make this town so special. In addition to its international wine reputation, Stellenbosch is also home to curated, public art exhibitions. During our leisurely walk you’ll get an insider’s perspective with an expert guide, savoring the handiwork of both passionate food artisans and celebrated artists in the outdoor art exhibition. Here you’ll indulge in an award-winning gin experience with light snacks, sample fine Stellenbosch craft beers with flavorful bites, enjoy local produce served with artisan bread, and sip a liquid ‘dessert’ at an innovative coffee laboratory. We’ll return to Franschhoek, and the afternoon is yours to explore. Our last dinner together tonight will be at Grande Provence Restaurant, situated on one of the most beautiful heritage estates in Franschhoek.

    Protea Hotel Franschhoek (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

    Hiking: 2 kilometers (1.6 miles), 2-3 hours

  • Day 10

    Return home, or get ready for your next adventure

    Sadly, our last day is already here, so following breakfast you will be transferred to Cape Town International Airport to say farewell to your travel companions and your trip leader. You’ll go home with your mind full of amazing safari stories to tell, and probably hundreds of incredible pictures to share.

    No Accommodation (Breakfast)

Trip Dates

Kruger National Park Safari Departure Dates

  • Upcoming
  • 3 months
  • 6 months
  • 1 year
USD $7999/per adult
12 Jun 2023
12 Jun21 Jun
Departure Open Open
17 Jul 2023
17 Jul26 Jul
Departure Open Open
31 Jul 2023
31 Jul9 Aug
Departure Open Open
14 Aug 2023
14 Aug23 Aug
Departure Open Open
28 Aug 2023
28 Aug6 Sep
Departure Open Open
14 Sep 2023
14 Sep23 Sep
Departure Open Open
Austin PIF 2

Take 10% off the trip price when you book a trip and pay in full.

By paying in full we are able to pass on savings to our guests, but please note that by opting for this payment plan, your booking becomes non-refundable, non-cancellable, and non-changeable. 

We highly recommend that you purchase Cancel For Any Reason (CFAR) insurance. We recommend Redpoint Insurance – you can find details here.

T+Cs Apply.


Useful Info

Where does the trip start?

On the first day of the trip you’ll need to meet your trip leader at 9am at the Information Desk in the International arrivals hall of Oliver Tambo Airport (JNB), Johannesburg.

Where does the trip end?

Your trip ends with a drop-off at Cape Town International Airport (CPT) in time for flights below.

What flights would you recommend?

Arrival: We recommend arriving in Johannesburg at least the day before your trip starts, and stayinh at the City Lodge Hotel at Oliver Tambo Airport, which is a short walk within the airport comple. If you do fly in on the first day of the trip, we recommend arriving in Johannesburg before 6am, to clear immigration and collect your luggage.

Departure: Flying out on the last day of the trip, we recommend departing from Cape Town after 2pm. Earlier flight times will require a separate transfer booked at your own expense.


How fit do I need to be for this safari?

As an Activity Level 1-2 trip, you’ll need a good level of fitness for this safari. While you don’t have to be extremely fit, you should be in the habit of doing medium to long walks. Each walking activity will comprise of two walks per day; a 3-4 hour walk in the morning and a 2-3 hour walk in the afternoon and upto 15 kilometres a day (9 miles). Most of the walks on this trip are from 2 to 3 hours at a relaxed pace. The terrain in the Kruger Park is arid and very flat with some thick bush patches and dry sand riverbeds. With a little preparation before your trip begins, you’ll enjoy the active and outdoor nature of your trip all the more.

Please head to our Fitness Guide for great tips on how to prepare along with a workout plan!

What accommodations do we stay at on this safari?

We prefer to stay in quaint, comfortable lodges as well as getting out and amongst it all in luxury tents. The lodges we stay in will provide private suites with ensuites, and some with private decks and the potential of seeing game in the adjacent bush. The tented camp provides en-suite bathrooms including indoor and outdoor showers offering gorgeous views over the Luvuvhu River. A bush bar, swimming pool and al-fresco dining area offer everyday entertainment, and there’s plenty of space to unwind beneath the branches of the giant trees embracing the camp.

We recommend bringing enough clothing to only have to do laundry a couple of times during your safari and while there are laundry facilities at most location, there will be an extra cost and you’ll also need to purchase laundry detergent from the reception areas.

How much luggage can I bring on this safari?

You’ll need one piece of luggage on your safari, plus a good quality daypack 25-30 litres (2000 cubic inches) to use throughout the days. 

Included in your itinerary is the flight from Johannesburg to Melalane (subject to availability) as well as a flight from Hoedspruit Airport to Cape Town. The weight requirements is a maximum 20 kilograms (44 pounds) for your check in bag, and maximum 8 kilograms (17 pounds) for your daypack/ carry on.

You’re welcome to bring extra gear however this can only be stored in Johannesburg as your trip does not start and finish in the same place. You may be able to store extra luggage at the Airport before your trip begins in Johannesburg.

Tell me more about the bike ride?

It’s luxury mountain bike tour through the Franschhoek winelands with lots of flexibility. If you want to ride all day, go for it. If you want to potter around town on your bike stopping at every vineyard for a tasting that’s also cool!
There will be a back-up vehicle within Franschhoek, excellent and varied wine estates, tastings and cellar tours and gourmet canapes for lunch.

You’ll be provided with one of the following bikes - Giant Alias 26” mountain bike or the Giant Tough Road 29er Hybrid. Both bikes are 27-speed Shimano high-end aluminium framed with composite fork features that dampen road vibrations, while a tall head tube ensures confident handling, and the low top-tube, a comfortably dismount. With hydraulic disc brakes, and cushy 50mm-wide tires, our bikes are ready for smooth pavement, undulating dirt roads, and anything else that may stand between us and our destination.

What safety measures are in place for the walking excursions?

While in South Africa you’ll be accompanied by your experienced Safari trip leader, who’s there to keep you informed about South Africa and make sure that everything runs smoothly; a qualified safari guide, who will provide additional local knowledge of the flora and fauna; a driver and also a team of walking guides! Each Camp you stay at will also have a team of people ensuring you are well fed and catered too.

The walks take place with the two guides, both carrying a rifle, and walking in front with all 8 guests in single file behind them. The walks take place mostly in silence and normally at a slow pace, as it is all about experiencing the African bush rather than covering distance. There is no fixed route for the walks and the direction taken could depend on the sounds of the previous night, or tracks seen earlier. Should fresh tracks of the larger iconic animals be found the guide might decide to follow them and locate the animal. When this happens the pace of the walk might be fast.

Is tipping expected in Africa?

Most people do choose to tip their Active Adventures safari guides and we recommend USD$20 per day, per guest, per guide. During your Active Adventures trip, your guides will take care of all included restaurants and service tips for you. For other restaurants or services during your holiday, 5-10% is a typical gratuity amount.

How do rooming arrangements work?

Trip prices are based on shared arrangements (typically two guests per room), unless otherwise stated. For solo travellers, we’ll pair you with another person of the same gender to share rooms and if there’s no one suitable to share with, there’s no forced single supplement. However, if you specifically request your own rooms, you can opt to pay the single supplement. Solo travellers who book within 90 days of departure, where there are no other solo travellers willing to share, will be required to pay the single supplement. 

For Family Vacation bookings, families consisting of four guests traveling with children aged 17 and under will be automatically assigned one shared room. However, the following alternative rooming allocations are available:

  • Families consisting of four guests with all children aged 13 and above are welcome to opt for additional rooms as per advertised double occupancy adult rates.
  • Families consisting of four guests with at least one child aged 12 and under are automatically assigned a shared room. However, families can opt to pay the adult rates for all guests in their family to have an additional room.
  • The same principles apply for families consisting of more than four guests.

Rooming preferences are subject to availability and must be communicated in writing at time of booking. Automatic assignments as per this policy will be applied in the absence of any specification provided by guests. Any request for additional rooms during trips will be at guests’ own expense and subject to rates made available by the accommodation provider at the time. All minors (guests aged 17 and under) must be accompanied by at least one adult.

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Kruger National Park Safari