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South Africa Luxury Safari & Beach Holiday

A luxurious safari and beach holiday in KwaZulu Natal offering superb value in stunning lodges. Start with safari in the renowned Hluhluwe National Park which plays host to the big five and has particularly strong rhino populations. Relax after your safari in South Africa's finest beach lodge on a stunning remote stretch of Indian Ocean Coast. Enjoy snorkelling, scuba diving, lake kayaking, bush walks and village visits.

Tailor-made Luxury 9 days

'From Price' is the average price per person for ground arrangements for two people sharing.

Flights are typically an additional £880 per person economy class from London

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Tourdust is rated 5.0 out of 5 stars


…We were really happy with the service we got from Tourdust which can be best described as friendly, efficient and expert.....

Missing Matthew McSweeney. See all Reviews

Itinerary

Overview


  • Spot the Big 5 on a guided safari

  • Luxurious accommodation with fantastic service

  • Relax By Stunning Remote Indian Ocean Beaches

  • Go snorkelling in the Indian Ocean


Your trip begins in a private game reserve in South Africa's KwaZulu Natal. Staying in luxurious, family friendly accommodation, you will have two game drives each day, with plenty of time each day for relaxing around the lodge, cooling off in the swimming pool, or perhaps visiting the spa. The renowned national park is home to the Big 5, as well as a cheetah, hyena, warthog and a plethora of bird life. The Park is particularly renowned for its Rhino population. Rangers are experts in their fields and very good at involving all of the family in the game drives, so everyone will be engaged. In the evenings, food is served in the dining area, where both adult and children's appetites are catered for.


After you've had your fill of safari, you will then move location to the Maputuland Coast, to stay in luxury suites located in the coastal dune forest. Here, you will be just be a short walk from deserted golden sand beaches, where no one will be able to resist splashing in the waves. During your stay, you can lie back and relax on the beach, play in the pool or watch the monkeys from your balcony. Daily activities are included in your stay - you can go snorkelling in a protected bay, go for a guided forest walk or enjoy a sundowner at Lake Sibaya, South Africa's largest inland freshwater lake where, in the summer months, you have a good chance of spotting hippos. Also available in the summer months is turtle tracking, when the guides will take you to the beach in the evening to watch turtles hatching and a cultural village visit. Additional activities which you can pay extra for include whale & dolphin watching, boat based snorkelling and diving visits.

Day-by-day

ITINERARY IN BRIEF:

DAY 1: Arrive Durban and transfer to Rhino Ridge Safari Lodge
DAY 2: Rhino Ridge Safari Lodge
DAY 3: Rhino Ridge Safari Lodge
DAY 4: Rhino Ridge Safari Lodge
DAY 5: Travel to Thonga Beach Lodge
DAY 6: Thonga Beach Lodge
DAY 7: Thonga Beach Lodge
DAY 8: Thonga Beach Lodge
DAY 9: Depart

FULL ITINERARY

DAY 1: ARRIVE DURBAN AND TRANSFER TO HLUHLUWE NATIONAL PARK
Accommodation: Rhino Ridge Lodge
Meals Included: Dinner
Day Notes: On arrival into Durban Airport you will be met and transferred to the safari lodge. After check in time to relax before gathering for your first safari drive in open 4x4 vehicle with safari guide. Return to the lodge for dinner.

DAY 2: ON SAFARI
Accommodation: Rhino Ridge Lodge
Meals Included: All meals
Day Notes: A typical day on safari generally starts with an early morning rise for a game drive to see the animals at their most active. You then have plenty of time to relax at the lodge in the middle of the day before heading out again in the late afternoon for a game drive and sundowner. The exact plan depends on the time of year and the weather and will be coordinated with your guide upon arrival. Hluhluwe and surrounding reserves are home to Africa’s Big Five: elephant, rhinoceros, Cape buffalo, lion and leopard, in addition to extensive bird and antelope species. What you see on each drive is unpredictable and it’s this variability that makes each sighting an adventure.

DAY 3: ON SAFARI
Accommodation: Rhino Ridge Lodge
Meals Included: All meals

DAY 4:ON SAFARI
Accommodation: Rhino Ridge Lodge
Meals Included: All meals

DAY 5: TRAVEL TO THONGA BEACH LODGE
Accommodation: Thonga Beach Lodge
Meals Included: All meals
Day Notes: After breakfast and morning game drive, you will depart for Thonga Beach Lodge which will take about 2 hours. After settling in you may want to take some snorkelling equipment and spend a relaxing afternoon on the beach.

DAY 6: THONGA BEACH LODGE
Accommodation: Thonga Beach Lodge
Meals Included: All meals
Day Notes: Thonga Beach Lodge offers several activities which are included in your stay. Whether you decide to do any of them, is completely up to you. This morning you may want to take the opportunity to enjoy a kayak trip around Lake Sibaya, if you are lucky you may have a chance of seeing hippo or crocodiles. In the afternoon, you could go on a guided forest walk and then spend the rest of the day relaxing on the beach.

DAY 7: THONGA BEACH LODGE
Accommodation: Thonga Beach Lodge
Meals Included: All meals
Day Notes: Another day at leisure at the beach. If you want to be active, your guide could take you to visit the local Mabibi community, or perhaps try your hand at fishing. If you are visiting between November - February, don't miss the opportunity to go turtle tracking, watching the turtle hatchlings making their way from their nests to the sea.

DAY 8: THONGA BEACH LODGE
Accommodation: Thonga Beach Lodge
Meals Included: All meals
Day Notes: At leisure

DAY 9: DEPART
Accommodation: n/a
Meals Included: Breakfast
Day Notes: Road transfer to Durban Airport for your return flight home

Accommodation


Guide price is based on recommended accommodations. Alternative accommodations and upgrades are available. Please get in touch or click on 'alternatives' below for alternatives and upgrade options.

Rhino Ridge Lodge

KwaZulu-Natal

Our rating

8/10

Price guide

Price rating 3

- 4* 22 Bedroom Safari Lodge
- Within Hluhluwe National Park
- Big five
- Low malaria risk

Thonga Beach Lodge

KwaZulu-Natal

Our rating

9/10

Price guide

Price rating 5

- Stunning Remote Beach Lodge
- Protected Snorkelling from the beach
- Diving & Marine Safaris
- Big Beachs & Warm Seas

Details

Getting there

Durban is well connected with direct flights with British Aiways from London Heathrow three times a week and daily flights connecting via Johannesburg (SAA, BA, Virgin) and via Durban (Emirates).


The New direct BA service from London to Durban operates three days per week – outbound on Monday, Thursday and Saturday (all overnight flights) and returning on Tuesday, Friday, Sunday (all day time flights requiring a night in Durban before the return flight as it is an early flight).


Flight prices on this route are always cheaper booked in advance, particularly when flying during UK school holidays. If you are booking anything less than a month prior to departure expect to pay through Virgin and BA tend to offer flight sales around September and October, which are worth looking out for.


Please let us know your preferred departure airport and we would be pleased to quote for a flight inclusive ATOL protected package.

Price includes

The guide price for this sample itinerary includes all transfers and lodging and is based on travel between May and July, different pricing applies for different seasons.


Rhino Ridge includes all meals (brunch, high tea & dinner), teas & coffees, 2 game drives per day, and a sundowner on the afternoon game drive (one house drink per person).


Thonga Beach Lodge includes Meals, teas/coffees, use of snorkelling equipment, guided walks, kayaking, sundowners at Lake Sibaya and cultural tours to Mabibi Community. Each guest is entilted to 1 of the following on a sundowner excursion at Lake Sibaya, glass of wine or local beer or cider or soft drink.

When is best?

This holiday is available all year round, although both accommodations will book out early for the Christmas period.

October - March is summer in South Africa and is the best time to view turtles hatching. At this time of year, temperatures will be 30C and over with occasional rain.

April - September is winter, which means sunny days with temperatures up to 25C and no rain. The bush is less dense at this time of year, so wildlife spotting is best in June, July & August.

Safety

For the latest travel advice from the Foreign and Commonwealth office check www.gov.uk/travelaware

What customers are saying after travelling with Tourdust

Average Rating

based on 508 reviews

(5.00/5)

  • Hi, just back home now as stayed in London last night. It was fab! We loved it! Amazing all round- Thankyou. Best holiday ever!!!

    Accommodation great at both places, guides lovely, staff great. We saw more animals than ever expected: giraffes, lion, elephants, water hog, wilder beast, impala, white rhino, crocodiles, hippos in lake Sybia, monkeys in trees at Tonga.

    Beach beautiful, but a bit windy, waves v rough but didn’t deter my boys. We snorkeled which was fab but too rough on day we booked to do ocean experience.

    My boys swam in all pools!!!

    Weather better than we expected!

    Must go and do some laundry, but hope that helps?

    Best Nicola

    MissingNicola B reviewing South Africa Luxury Safari & Beach Holiday on 24 July 2019

  • Hi Lisa

    We had an amazing holiday.

    Everything was fantastic.

    The transport wa spot on, great drivers, all on time, vans really comfortable and water supplied, a really nice way to travel, and you also get to hear all about the local area. Both companies were excellent.

    Virgin - was a brilliant airline, not sure why I haven't used them before, SO much better than BA.

    Rhino ridge was amazing from start to finish. We has a great female safari guide, who we got very fond of. The wildlife is more sparse but as its more challenging to find we enjoyed this, the surrounding are spectacular. Our guide had great knowledge of the birds. walking safari was excellent and highly recommend. The rooms were superb, very comfortable.

    Thonga beach lodge staff were brilliant, the whole place was amazing, the range of activities excellent and again out guides excellent. The food was wonderful. Again the bird guiding and general guiding was brilliant. We really enjoyed the cultural side of our visit, seeing the local communities and church etc. My only comment on thonga for future guests would be if they can afford it maybe to go for a lodge with a ocean view, our lodge was great , the childrens was quite cramped and low down with a very damp musty smell - not that they noticed it, but I think if people were expecting luxury they might not get what they wanted... saying that it was fantastic for us. The lodge staff were amazing and went out of their way for us.

    Oyster box was a phenomenal hotel and quite a shock to be back in the world after Thonga - but really worth the stay - we loved it, they Kindly gave us a room for the next day as we had a late flight.

    The whole experience was brilliant and really well organised- thank you. We ALL loved everything!

    On reflection:

    we loved having transport rather than driving, it meant we could relax , sleep and find out about the country from the driver.

    If we changed anything, I might spend a little less time at the beach and maybe take in another safari region also. We were repeatedly recommended the Phinda private game reserve (andBeyond) so maybe we would have spent a couple of nights there, in addition, local guides and the tour people said it would give good variety to the Rhino ridge.

    However we were 100% happy with what we did, we really look forward to our next safari !!!

    Best wishes

    Ali

    MissingAlison D reviewing South Africa Luxury Safari & Beach Holiday on 23 July 2019

  • Really brilliant being met in the airport off the plane. It got the holiday off to the right start and driver really chatty and knowledgeable. Great transfers to and from the camps with drivers that were like guides - pointing out animals and full of interesting facts. All really friendly.

    4 Rosmead in Cape Town; We loved it here. Just the right side of plush and a lovely warm, friendly welcome. Breakfast were delicious. It was a real haven to come back to and even though it was small it didn’t feel intrusive. They were also really helpful with great places to eat.

    Tours in Cape Town; Our guide, Bevan, gave us an incredible insight into the history of South Africa whilst also being really knowledgeable on wild life and nature. No question was too hard and his answers honest. He had an intern with him from a township and this allowed us a different perspective. Bevan was brilliant with my daughter. The Cape Point trip was a full on day with lots packed in. Our highlight was the penguins but we also really enjoyed seeing Cape Point and getting our first taste of the wild life to come! Our stand out experience in Cape Town had to be the tour of Masiphumelele. We’re so pleased that we did this as it gave us an insight of the lives of so many people in SA. The visibility of such poverty was tough going at times and we learned much about the harsh realities of living in a township such as how dwellings regularly burn down, TB & HIV incidence but equally we saw the resilience, warmth and resourcefulness of the residents. We loved being shown around the nursery and the library and the chance to have a very different experience. Being in someone’s home for lunch was a real privilege. We got such a lovely welcome there and the food was really delicious. The tribal dance routine felt a little forced and I wasn’t convinced there was much pride in the display. I think being shown a little more of the craft workshop or the older people’s group might have worked better. Although I can see how this allowed us have a purpose to go into the unofficial part of the township. All in all a moving experience that will stay with us both for years to come.

    Getting around Cape Town; We quickly learnt from local people it’s not actually that safe walking around Cape Town except for in the Waterfront. Uber is the best way to travel - much safer and cheaper than the local cabs. The fares are ridiculously cheap.

    Food/Going Out; There are so many great places to eat in Cape Town. The indoor food market at the Waterfront is an absolute must. A huge variety of food that is great quality. Also a great place to hang out for a while as there is always bands playing. The Waterfront overall was a pleasant way to do a bit of shopping. We got some great township art there. We ate at the Cod Father in Camp Bay. It was night so we couldn’t benefit from the incredible views. The food was incredible and really fresh. Really warm service too. The Nelson Eye? was also gorgeous for meat eaters. A slightly retro steak house but with the best meat (nor for vegetarians!). We had great steak, ribs and a divine mint crisp local dessert. We also found a lovely place on Kloof Street called the Dark Horse (its sister restaurant the Black Sheep was closed). Really excellent small plates and great selection of wines.

    Moswari Game Reserve; This part of the holiday blew us away. The safari was spectacular. From our first game drive we saw and learnt so much about the incredible bush. We saw the Big Five within 24 hours (although we appreciate that must be unusual) but it wasn’t just that we saw them we saw them in amazingly dynamic situations - lion cubs suckling the lioness, rhino doing a strange greeting, a herd of 40 elephants at almost touching distance, a leopard eating its kill in a bush and then majestically descending. I could just go on. It wasn’t just these but also the wonderful giraffe sightings, all types of buck and antelope, a rainbow of different coloured birds. This was an unforgettable experience.

    Our guide and tracker, Weinond and Bricks, were perfect. Weinond was a lovely gentle and sensitive man with an encyclopaedic knowledge for wildlife and nature. Bricks was a skilled tracker and I am certain that without him we would not have seen half of what we did. You could feel their passion for the animals and they seemed to take as much joy from a spot as we did. Whilst driving Weinond filled us with information about life in the bush. This meant we learnt so much about the habits and habitats of the magnificent animals and birds we were seeing.

    The camp and rooms were top class. It was a small intimate camp with nicely spaced lodges for privacy. The view from our lodge was stunning. The room was large, beautifully furnished and with the best bathroom ever. If there was one thing that could be added it would be would be access to drinks in your room. Sometimes you want a beer or a nightcap without having to go all the way to the main camp.

    The food was luscious. There was something for everyone and it was all of a really high standard and cooked to perfection. It was definitely restaurant standard. My only complaint is how much weight I’ve put in because I couldn’t resist!

    The service throughout was warm, friendly and appropriate. Very professional.

    We stayed for a night in the Giraffes Nest. This was a special, magical experience. The setting was fabulous and ‘nest’ itself beautifully decorated. It was winter so it was a cold night but they gave you lots of blankets and a cosy robe to help with that. Once in the best you we’re in your own but with radio connection back to the camp. Whilst we only spotted 2 animals during the night it was a special experience sleeping under a blanket of stars. It was a bit overpriced I think for what it is and I think in the winter it should be possible might to stay a bit longer in the morning ( we were collected 6 am to join our drive group) as this might mean you would see animals in the light.

    Finally, I cannot recommend this camp enough to people. A truly spectacular holiday that we will never forget. I’ve definitely been bitten by the Africa bug!

    MissingDara d reviewing Cape Town & Kruger Safari on 02 July 2019

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Alternative Itineraries

Our itineraries are carefully designed by our experienced travel designers based on years of experience and customer feedback. For a custom itinerary tailored to you, please enquire giving as much detail as possible on your brief.

Big five safari in the renowned Hluhluwe Imfolozi National Park, kayaking and wildlife in the magnificent iSimangaliso Wetland Park and luxury beach relaxation at the Oyster Box Hotel

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'From Price' is the average per person price for ground arrangements for two people sharing.

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'From Price' is the average price per person for ground arrangements for a family of four (two adults + two children under 12).

Flights are typically an additional £850 per person economy class from London

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Flights are typically an additional £880 per person economy class from London

Combine the beautiful Drakensberg Mountains, Safari and remote beaches in this perfect three centre family holiday in South Africa's KwuZulu Natal.

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