Day 1: Johannesburg – Sabie (D)
Head east in your luxury car from Johannesburg along the Panoramic Route to the Mpumalanga – ‘Place Where The Sun Rises’ – and drive past spectacular scenic terrain as you listen to your guide’s commentary along the way. You’ll pass through the village of Dullstroom and travel over Robbers Pass to have lunch (own expense) in Pilgrim’s Rest, a historic mining town.
Continue north to the town of Drakensberg and stop to take a few photos of natural attractions such as God’s Window, Pinnacle Rock and the gorgeous Mac Mac Falls, which plunge 209 feet (64 meters) into a forested gorge below.
In the afternoon, arrive in Sabie, nestled in the Drakensburg Mountains on the banks of the Sabie River. Enjoy the breathtaking scenery of this tranquil, small town at your leisure until you meet your group for dinner.
Overnight: 3- to 4-star hotel accommodation in Sabie
Day 2: Sabie – Kruger National Park (B, D)
After breakfast, head to Elephant Whispers, a sanctuary for six African Elephants, for a rare opportunity to interact with the majestic giants up close. Discover the mammals’ remarkable intelligence and fantastic memory as you touch their wrinkly skin.
Continue to the Kruger Cultural Village to learn about the cultures of Mpumalanga, including the Swazi, Shangaan, Zulu and Ndebele people. Listen to African songs and see dancers perform in traditional attire before you dine on authentic cuisine for lunch (own expense).
Then, enter Kruger National Park for an unparalleled look at South Africa’s diverse flora and fauna, including magnificent bird life. Embark on an afternoon game safari in a closed vehicle and pursue the Big Five – white rhinos, buffalo, elephants, lions and leopards – as well as other endangered species.
Finally, return to the lodge for dinner under the stars in a traditional ‘boma,’ an open-air shelter made of reed walls enclosing a fire pit, where you’ll enjoy a feast by lantern light (weather permitting).
Overnight: 3- to 4-star hotel accommodation in Kruger National Park
Day 3. Kruger National Park – Mthethomusha Game Reserve (B, L, D)
After breakfast, relax on another drive through the superb expanse of Kruger National Park for more game-viewing opportunities. Then, head to Mthethomusha Game Reserve, set against the gorgeous Malelane Mountains, and enjoy lunch at the lodge.
In the late afternoon, set out on an open-vehicle game safari, traversing through the reserve past granite outcrops and crags. Stop to view an outdoor exhibit of more than 200 spectacular rock paintings, which record the spiritual belief system of the San, hunter-gatherers who populated the region for millennia.
Afterward, enjoy a dinner of Pan-African cuisine and relax for the evening at your comfortable accommodation.
Overnight: 3- to 4-star hotel accommodation
Day 4: Mthethomusha Game Reserve – Johannesburg (B)
Dine on an early breakfast before embarking on another open-vehicle game drive through the reserve to spot white-tailed mongoose, kudu, giraffe, zebra, sable and – of course – the ‘Big Five.’
Next, visit the famous Jane Goodall Institute, informally known as ‘Chimp Eden’ for its protection of the primates she studied. Afterward, admire beautiful vistas of the de Kaap Valley and surrounding mountains as you enjoy lunch (own expense).
After a scenic drive back through Mpumalanga with your guide, you’ll arrive back in Johannesburg in the late afternoon, where your tour ends.