South Africa is a huge nation simply screaming to be explored, so it can be tempting to try and pack it all into one trip. However, a rushed itinerary can leave you needing another holiday at the end of your trip so these 12 nights do exactly the opposite - by keeping to just the Eastern and Western Capes, it will give you a real in-depth glimpse of life in the Cape.
You'll begin your adventure in Cape Town, with 4 nights in a luxury boutique style hotel, which sits on the slopes of Table Mountain and offers views over the city, yet is still within easy reach of the bustling V&A Waterfront or the beachfront cafes and restaurants of Camps Bay.
Next, you'll retreat into a Wineland wonderland, spending 2 nights amongst endless vines at the 5* Mont Rochelle in Franschhoek. This stunning 26 bedroom hotel is set on grounds covering 39 hectares, and a favourite activity for many guests is having a picnic on the estate - the kitchen can arrange a well-stocked picnic basket with a chilled bottle of wine (or two!).
After this, you'll journey to the sensational Sanbona Wildlife Reserve, a peaceful natural sanctuary deep in the Cape. Here, you can explore 58,000 hectares of mountains and plains in traditional game drives at dusk and dawn, complete with ancient bushman art and stunning wildlife and scenery.
You'll end your trip around the Cape with 3 nights on the world-famous Garden Route, staying in a Sea View Suite at The Views Boutique Hotel in Wilderness. There's no better place to watch dolphins frolicking in the bay beneath you as you sip your morning coffee, or to savour the African sun as it paints the sky pink before bidding farewell to the day.
Holiday Title: Discover South Africa at a Relaxed Pace
Countries Visited: South Africa
Arrive into Cape Town International Airport. Go through Immigration, collect your luggage and clear Customs, then make your way into the Arrivals Hall where your driver will be waiting for you, holding a signboard with your name on it. You will then be transferred to your first accommodation.
Built in 1903, Four Rosmead is a small boutique-style hotel that has been sensitively and stylishly remodelled. Interiors are chic and contemporary with a subtle, yet distinctive African spirit enhanced by original South African artwork. Situated on the slopes of Table Mountain in the tranquil and leafy Oranjezicht area, you will be within walking distance of Green Market Square, and only 10 minutes by car/taxi from the V&A Waterfront, Kirstenbosch Gardens and Clifton and Camps Bay beaches.
This morning your hire car will be delivered to your guest house at 10:00. Complete the necessary paperwork - you will need to present your driving licence, passport and credit card. The keys to your hire car will then be handed over to you.
With a hire car, you can explore slightly further afield - maybe taking a day trip down to the Cape Peninsula, stopping en-route there or back at Boulders Beach, which is home to one of only 2 mainland nesting colonies of African penguins in South Africa.
12 Day Car Rental: Group E: Toyoto Corolla Auto or similar - Automatic Transmission (on Super Cover)
This morning after a leisurely breakfast check out of your hotel and drive to Mont Rochelle, a stunning hotel and vineyard just under an hour's drive from Cape Town in the town of Franschhoek. Franschhoek is a traditional town famously known as the French Corner of the Cape and is considered to be the 'food and wine capital' of South Africa.
Depart this morning for a 3 hours to drive to the Sanbona Wildlife Reserve. Sanbona boasts 58,000 hectares of sculpted mountains, wide-open Karoo plains, indigenous flora and fauna and rare examples of San rock art, some dating back more than 3,500 years. Interactive game drives last up to 3 hours traversing the wild landscape with a qualified range in a comfortable open Land Cruiser. During the early morning or sunset game drives, numerous species of plants, animals, big game and birds can be seen.
After your early morning game drive, enjoy breakfast back at the lodge before checking out and continue the drive to the Garden Route (approx 250 km / 2 h 50 mins). Beautiful coastlines, breathtaking mountains and valleys, tall forests, deep blue lakes and lagoons - these are the reasons why the Garden Route is one of the most popular tourist destinations in South Africa. There are loads of things to do along the Garden Route - whale watching, elephant and bird sanctuaries, hiking, watersports, fishing, horse riding, ostrich farms, mountain biking, long beach strolls, boat trips, shopping for arts and crafts - even bungee jumping from the highest bridge in Africa.
After breakfast, check out and allow about 5 hours to drive back to Cape Town Airport, where you will return your hire car before checking in for your flight home. Passengers are advised to check in at least 2.5 to 3 hours before the flight departure.