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Ecotour National Parks of South Africa

22-day round trip, South Africa

Ecotour National Parks of South Africa – the name says it all. This epic journey takes you on an adventure through the national parks of South Africa. Safaris don’t come completer than this. Each area has its own landscape, ecosystem and wildlife, so you get to know all faces of wildlife. Meeting the Big Five on land is already incredibly impressive, but you’ll literally go beyond that into Big Six territory when you add the sea.

Mix this with wonderful landscapes, stunning exclusive ecolodges and bespoke conservation experiences and the most pristine beaches, and you have the recipe for the best safari ever!

This tour does not only live up to it’s name, Ecotour National Parks of South Africa, but moreover confirms to all standards of a Fair Trade Holiday.

“Traveling – it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller.” – Ibn Battuta

Highlights of the Ecotour National Parks of South Africa

  • Unique three-day Conservation Safari in Marakele NP
  • Three days in Botswana’s exclusive Thuli Game Reserve
  • Discover old ruins and granite ‘koppies’ in beautiful Mapungubwe NP
  • Travel along the stunning Panorama Route
  • Three days of walking safaris in the famous Kruger NP
  • Two day horse riding safari: ride between giraffes and sleep in a cave
  • Bush to Beach: three days on a tropical beach
  • The Big Six: look for whales in the Indian Ocean

Ecotour National Parks of South Africa in detail

The City of Gold welcomes you for your first few days in Africa. You’ll stay in a game reserve and have your very first game drive the next morning. Find out why Africa is called the home of civilization with a visit to the Cradle of Humankind and see where the first people really came from.

After this, the Marakele National Park is surrounded by the Waterberg Mountains and makes for the best sunsets you will ever experience while searching for the Big Five. Here you have an unique experience: a three day Conservation Safari. You will not just join a safari, but actively participate in the conservation activities that make a game reserve tick! Enjoy exploring on foot, become skilled at recognizing an animal by his unique paw prints, put your ear to the ground and listen to the beat of Africa.

Conservation Safari

Together with your guide you’ll design your own Marataba experience. You can do day- and night drives, but also join the conservation activities like:

  • wild walking: traversing Marataba on foot will take you to places that very few have been before.
  • Take part in the tracking and monitoring of the area’s key species and assist in the compilation of ID kits using the latest technology.
  • Help set up new and existing camera traps, change the batteries and inspect the footage to see what really goes on behind the scenes.
  • Assist in the collection of crucial information by logging wildlife species and observing interactions.
  • Participate in focused tree planting, wrap trees for protection against elephant damage and observe flora rehabilitation in action.
  • Learn about the park control centre and how it operates (cloud-based activity).
  • Rare species monitoring: monitor and track some of the rare and secretive species of the area, including hyena, aardwolf, honey badger, pangolin and aardvark.

Land of the Baobab and ancient ruins

Then traverse into Botswana where the Northern Thuli Game reserve will be your home for the next few days. The majestic baobabs form the backdrop to an unforgettable safari experience in the desert area. Feel the African sun on your back and let the smell of the bush fill up your lungs. Feel the excitement of spotting the cat species that are in abundance here. Bump into a herd of Elephant stopping from a drink from the majestic Limpopo River. Etch the views in your memory. For views like this, you will find nowhere else in the world but here.

The Ecotour National Parks of South Africa continues to Mapungubwe, where ancient civilizations once ruled. The ruins are the site where the historic Golden Rhino was found. It’s proof of Africa’s great civilization before the arrival of the Europeans. Find out about the myths and the legends of the once-powerful people of Mapungubwe. Then go and explore the beautiful landscape where four of the Big Five roam. The confluence where 3 countries meet is a sight to behold.

Walking safari in the Kruger NP

Next, the panorama route owes its name to the spectacular views. Stop at God’s window to take a peek at the beautiful landscape over a kilometer below you and find out if Bourke really had some luck at his potholes. The Three Rondawels with their brown frame and green roofs tower over the valley. Descend with a glass elevator in a deep gorge. Make certain you take all of it in and soak in the beauty that surrounds you.

No Ecotour National Parks of South Africa can be complete without the Kruger National park, South Africa’s most famous game reserve, much flatter and greener than the earlier parks. Get ready to go on an early morning game walk with an experienced ranger where you will experience the bush waking up. Maybe you will be lucky enough to see an early morning hunt. Instead of a safari on foot to search for the bushveld residents, learn to track and be with the game in their natural habitat, you can also go on game drives in dedicated open safari vehicles.

Go on a horseback safari

Spend the next 3 nights in eSwatini (former Swaziland) where you can have a unique two-day tour on horseback. You’ll ride between giraffes, zebras and antelopes through the Mlilwane nature reserve. One night you’ll rough it in a cave and have some local cuisine prepared over an open fire like how it was done back in the days. You ride back to the comfort of your lodge the next day. Not a horse rider? Go walking or cycling at your own pace between the animals.

Bush to beach: the Big Six

Finally, the wildlife of South Africa spreads well past the beaches. Depart for the Kingdom of the Zulu to one of South Africa’s most pristine beaches, on the shores of the Isimangaliso Wetland Park (UNESCO World Heritage Site).

Here you will have the opportunity to snorkel with the wildlife of the ocean. In season you can watch the sea turtles come up the beach at night to lay their eggs. From July to December the last “Big” makes its entry: the whales arrive and make number Six on your list. It’s also a great place to just relax on the beach, enjoy exceptional cuisine and have an opportunity to interact with the locals.

Map of the tour

Ecotour National Parks South Africa map

Bespoke private experiences

Use our unique tours and experiences as a source of inspiration for your exclusive holiday. Tell us what you like and what you don’t like in this tour, or any particular tour that speaks to you. Or let us know in general what experiences you would like to have. Based on what you tell us we’ll make a bespoke, unique tour for you. We’ll keep adjusting the itinerary, accommodations and way of travel until you have YOUR perfect holiday. Your exclusive experience of a lifetime.

This is experiential travel at its best. Nothing is set in stone, all can be combined, adjusted, changed to make your own bespoke holiday! Here are some more ideas to inspire you.

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