Cape Town to Victoria Falls vacation tips

Cape Town to Vic Falls vacation tips


TIPS FROM OUR FRIENDS IN AFRICA

Participatory vs. non participatory tours


Tom Harari, from our supplier, Exodus, talks us through their Cape Town to Victoria Falls vacations: “Our trips in the area are aimed at people with an adventurous spirit but who maybe want a little more comfort – though different trips are geared at slightly different people. Our camping trips are all non-participatory which means the camp is set up for you and the cooking is done for you. Some trips the camping is quite luxurious with proper beds, others are with cots or mattresses. For those who want more comfort then we do also have some accommodated trips staying in lodges, hotels and guesthouses. Whatever level of accommodation the adventure is still there with vehicles ranging from small overland trucks to purpose built 4WD vehicles. Essentially these trips are not extremely budget nor extremely luxurious but are for people who want something in between.”

Activity advice


Jayne Harley, from our supplier, Sunway Safaris, shares her tips on what sort of activities you can expect:
“Cape Town to Vic Falls is an active vacation. There’s travel, there’s some early mornings – you can’t compare it to a cruise, or a beach vacation, where you saunter down to breakfast at 9am and then lie on the beach for the afternoon. It’s for people who want to get out and explore. We don’t include the adrenalin sports in our costs – things like skydiving, quad biking, bungee jumping – those are all at traveler’s own expense, but at places like Swakopmund and Vic Falls, there’s time to think and book on the tour itself, so you don’t have to pre-book."

Safari tips


Tom Harari, from our supplier, Exodus, shares his Cape Town to Victoria Falls vacation advice:
“When going on safari, dress in neutral colours – it helps blend in which makes wildlife less nervous. It’s also worth investing in, or borrowing, a good pair of binoculars when on safari – and if you’re into photography it’s worth having a good telephoto lens. Lastly, always listen to your guide, if they say not to do something or go somewhere, there’s a good reason. Wildlife is, as the name implies, wild.”

Tour highlights


Tom Harari, from our supplier Exodus: “Generally speaking my personal highlight is the amazing changing scenery you get along this route – especially on the Namibia section but also Okavanago area and Vic Falls. More specifically – Cape Town for its urban appeal and amazing setting, Sossusvlei and Deadvlei are just spectacular, the watering holes in Etosha provide some of the best wildlife viewing experiences anywhere (G+T whilst watching rhinos and lions at a watering hole is quite the experience) and finally Vic Falls seen from the air is absolutely stunning.”

Participatory trips tips


Jayne Harley, from our supplier, Sunway Safaris, shares her tips on what their participatory trips involve:
“Our Cape Town to Vic Falls overland is a participatory trip, so the clients are expected to help out with meal preparation – things like stirring the pot, or chopping veg. Our departure briefings liken it to when you have a dinner party at your house; everyone ends up in the kitchen anyway, helping out and chatting over a glass of wine and it’s where you get to know people. Camaraderie is a vital part of this trip, and being part of a group and feeling part of a group is an essential element of the overall experience.”

Health & safety


TRAVEL SAFELY on a cape town to victoria falls vacation

Health


  • Consult your GP 6-8 weeks in advance of travel. They will assess your particular health risks before recommending any vaccinations.
  • Malaria is present across parts of Southern Africa, particularly Victoria Falls and the Okavango Delta, so you may need to take anti-malarial medication. Wearing long sleeves and trousers is advised, as well as insect repellent; the risk is higher during the rainy season. This also protects against dengue fever. Remember, malaria can develop up to a year after exposure, so keep an eye on any symptoms.
  • Be aware of the extreme heat and dryness – use sunblock and hats and keep well hydrated.
  • Some parts of Southern Africa can get extremely cold during their winter months, especially in the early morning, and in the desert. Check the climate information on your tour according to where you’ll be and when, and if it gets chilly pack warm layers, along with hats and gloves.
  • Cities such as Cape Town and Windhoek have good health facilities, while rural areas may only provide the most basic healthcare. Comprehensive travel insurance is essential – covering all activities you are expecting to participate in, as well as emergency repatriation. Bring a basic first aid kit, medication for sickness and diarrhea and any prescription medicine you are likely to need.
  • In most of Namibia and South Africa, tap water is perfectly safe to drink. So bring refillable bottles to reduce your cost and create less waste along the way.
  • Do not bathe in rivers or lakes unless you are specifically told it is safe to do so. There is a significant danger from wildlife as well as water-borne diseases such as bilharzia. In many places it is also illegal.
  • Make a note of the local emergency telephone numbers for each country you plan to visit.

Safety


Be careful at ATMs in South Africa. Avoid using them in secluded places and after dark and don’t withdraw large amounts of cash. Check to see if the machine has been tampered with; scams include damaging the machine so that your card gets stuck, so that money can be withdrawn from your account once you’ve gone into the bank to report the jammed card.

Generally, national parks and wildlife reserves have no issues with crime. But do exercise the usual precautions in cities. Leave valuables in your hotel, use cabs booked by your hotel or restaurant and avoid walking around at night.

Homosexuality is stigmatised – or even illegal – in Zimbabwe, Botswana and Namibia – though South Africa prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation. Same-sex couples are advised to be aware of local laws and customs, and to act discretely in public.

Camping in game reserves is thrilling as you are surrounded by wildlife – including elephants, lions and hyenas. Your guide will explain the regulations at each camp – please listen, they know their stuff!

For further information on health and safety across Southern Africa, please visit the FCO or the CDC websites.

Tips from our travelers in Southern Africa


TRAVEL LIKE A LOCAL!

At Responsible Travel, we think the best people to advise our travelers are often... other travelers. They always return from our tours with packing tips, weather reports, ideas about what to do - and opinions about what not to.

We have selected some of the most useful Cape Town to Victoria Falls vacation tips that our guests have provided over the years to help you make the very most of your vacation - and the space inside your suitcase.
“Remember that this is Africa and everything does not work all the time. Be patient and positive and make friends along the way.”Louis Carroll

“Take thermal underwear with you when going on this trip in Africa's winter. The temperature at night was sub zero and morning/evenings were cold as well.”Sigrid Pach

“Come with open mind and interest in photography - be prepared to muck in but better than most overland trips in that we had a cook, spacious vehicle and tents.” Wendy Taylor

“Don't delay... Go now before you are too old or sadly the animals are gone! This rates as the top vacation we have done, equal with an Antarctica expedition!”Heather Gratland

“Be prepared for very early starts and not much downtime.”Christina Monson

“Don't be put off for traveling in short wet season. We went at the end of Feb and still saw many animals.” Chris Hehir

“Spend your money in villages; don't quibble, they need it more than you do.”John Palmer

“If you go on safari in South Africa in May, take warm clothes and layer! Take the time to just sit and listen to the sounds of nature and enjoy the views, take in all the information that the guides give you.”Amanda Hathaway


Written by: Polly Humphris

Photo credits: [Participation: Graham Hood, Sunway safari ] [Tom Harari, tip: John Y. Can] [Helpdesk box, SA coastal road: Damien du Toit] [Rough roads: abi.bhattachan] [Long lens camera: Ninara] [Tom Harari, participatory tip: Exodus Travels]
Cape Town to Victoria Falls small group lodge tour

Cape Town to Victoria Falls small group lodge tour

Classic route lodge safari to Namibia, Botswana & Zimbabwe

From US $3565 21 Days ex flights
Cape Town to Victoria Falls vacation in South Africa

Cape Town to Victoria Falls vacation in South Africa

A spectacular and diverse African journey

From US $2635 20 Days ex flights
Cape Town to Victoria Falls small group camping safari

Cape Town to Victoria Falls small group camping safari

"Overland" camping safari to Namibia, Botswana & Zimbabwe

From US $2610 21 Days ex flights
Cape Town to Vic Falls small group tour

Cape Town to Vic Falls small group tour

Adventure packed vacation from Cape Town to Victoria Falls.

From US $1774 22 Days ex flights
The Grand Southern Africa safari

The Grand Southern Africa safari

21-day tour from Cape Town to Victoria Falls

From £1719 20 days ex flights
Convert currencies