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Get close to the big 5 in Kruger National Park and take game drives and walks with your Safari Ranger guide, as they teach you the tricks of the trade
8 days, 1 country
6 nights in Special Stay
6 Breakfasts, 5 Lunches, 7 Dinners
Maximum 20 people
Welcome to South Africa! An included transfer will take you to your hotel close to the airport. You have today to explore Johannesburg - head to the Apartheid museum for a dose of history, check out sprawling Soweto, or take the Gautrain to the shopping destinations of Rosebank or Sandton. Your dinner tonight is included back at the hotel.
Departing Johannesburg today, we'll drive to Pafuri Gate, the entrance to Kruger National Park.
After meeting our guides and taking the safety briefing, we'll get acquainted with Makuleke Camp. After settling in, it's time for our first adventure, an unforgettable game drive and night drive, to get introduced to the reserve, its wildlife, and that sweeping night's sky.
Rise and shine! Today is all about Ecology & Conservation, so after a cooked breakfast we'll head out on a game drive or bush walk. Along the way our Game Ranger guide will teach us about the area's ecology and geology, as well as how the wildlife interact with the land. Back at camp we'll enjoy an interactive discussion by our instructor about the inter-relatedness of geology and soils, weather and atmosphere, food webs and energy flows, and habitats and conservation. Clued up on all things ecology, we'll then head out on another game drive, incorporating game viewing with an emphasis on ecology and the topics covered during the lecture.
Today's topic is tracking, an essential skill if you want to be a safari ranger! We'll take a morning bush walk and learn all about how to identify animal tracks. After living our best Aragorn lives, it's back to camp for our daily lesson, focussing on track identification and trailing skills. Then it's time to put it into practice, as we take a bush walk and try and trail some animals.
Good morning! Today's topic is bird identification and behaviour, so we'll take a morning walk and learn how to spot different types of birds using reference guides. Back at camp we'll enjoy another interactive discussion, this time on Kruger's magnificent birdlife. Then it's time for our game drive, as we try to spot hornbills, storks, kingfishers, starlings and more, learning about their behaviour and conservation status.
Another day, another fascinating topic - this time Navigation & Orientation. We'll take a trail from camp and learn how to use nature as a tool to navigate and orientate ourselves in the bush. Making our way to the midday picnic spot, we'll enjoy lunch in the bush, discussing everything we've learned, before heading back to camp. Here we'll take our interactive discussion around bush skills and navigation, including how to use landmarks, the sun, a compass and maps to make our way in the wild. Then it's time for another game drive, where we'll have the opportunity to take a walk and put everything we've learned into practice.
One more day of lessons, and today's topic is animal identification and behaviour. We'll take our customary morning bush walk, trailing from camp and learning about the behaviour of mammals, amphibians, reptiles, fish and arthropods. Then we'll enjoy another interactive discussion on how to identify and study wildlife, before another afternoon game drive, with a focus on spotting Big Game animals.
It's our final day! But don't feel blue: we've still got time for one more unforgettable game drive to end the trip on the high...
Then it's back to Johannesburg where our adventure comes to an end. But having lived life on the wild side, it's hard not to start planning our next safari...Botswana, anyone?
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Frequently asked questions
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What is Contiki?
Contiki are the world leaders in organized youth travel. We’ve been providing amazing travel experiences for young travellers, from 18-35 years old, since 1962. Imagine how good you would be at something if you had been doing it for more than 60 years?
Everything about Contiki is deeply rooted in our two values ‘Make Every Moment Count’ and ‘We’re About People’. We don’t just talk, we walk the walk and live by our brand philosophy of ‘Travel.Together.’ which means to travel with one another, with the destinations we visit, the people and cultures we enjoy and the environment.
You’ve never experienced travel like this.
Why only 18-35?
Focusing on 18-35 year olds allows us to tailor a dramatically more powerful travel experience and an itinerary so fun it feels like all of your best Friday nights combined.
Tailoring to select ages brings together like minded, likeable people, and allows us to use Social Travel planning to build great groups of people so fast you’ll wonder if you’ve been friends forever.
What destinations can I go to with Contiki?
A sunrise, shoreline or bright light for every whim. We are proud to offer more than 350 Global trips, intelligently designed for a seamless and simple social travel experience. Visit our search page to discover your perfect travel destination.
How does it work?
We’re reinventing hassle free travel. Whether you are a solo traveller or group you can be rest assured that there has been tonnes of planning behind every trip.
Booking with Contiki means you are saying yes to a smile inducing trip where the typically stressful elements just seem to magically happen.
No one does trips like Contiki, essential accommodation, transport, reservations and so much more is all taken care of. You can multiply the magic with trip add ons and numerous customisations for your free time.
Every single Contiki social travel trip is managed by one of our expert Trip Managers, who are there to provide hands-on support and ensure your trip runs smoothly whilst you stay in the moment.
From 2022 your good time will be good for the planet as all Contiki trips are carbon natural. Find out more here.
How many other travellers are on each trip?
Group sizes are completely dependent on where and how you choose to travel with Contiki.
In Europe and in most of North America and New Zealand, group sizes can range between 24 – 53 awesome travellers.
In regions like Asia, Australia, Africa and Latin America, and on some North America and New Zealand trips, our group sizes are considerably smaller – as low as 12 or up to 30 travellers max.
Detour trips offer a different type of experience and max out at 16 people led by a local host.
Wondering what is so great about travelling together? Check out the Contiki Social travel page.
Each group is administered according to our strict Covid policies which can be viewed here.
All essential trip elements have been catered to ensure a great time, with great people in great places. But you mean more specifically right?
Your accommodation, essential trip transport, and a good handful of meals are included in the cost of your Contiki trip (on most trips we offer breakfast every day, plus a hand-picked selection of authentic and tasty meals).
To fill your days and Insta feeds we have Included Experiences, which are basically the sights and activities we think you just can’t afford to miss. Of course you also get our expert and highly trained team of Contiki staff to support throughout.
A day by day breakdown of inclusions and Free Time Add-Ons are available on the trip specific pages.
We always try to accommodate special requests such as birthdays, proposals etc. Please chat to our team and we can explore how we may support the request.
What’s not included?
Contiki social travel trips have a large degree of flexibility built into them to enable you to truly own your experience. This means that some trip elements are not included in the initial cost and may require additional budgeting.
Flights to and from your starting and ending points are not included in the cost of your trip. These can be added on during the booking process either online or via our contact center or booked independently by you.
Each trip contains the right amount of free time for you to explore or indulge your travel desires. We offer Free Time Add-Ons, which are additional experiences that are not included in the overall price. These add ons are highlighted on the specific trip page. Your Trip Manager will highlight these to you and organise their booking on trip. Exceptions may apply where pre booking is required but this will be made known to you in your pre departure information.
A number of meal times are left open for you to explore a region and its foodie offerings in greater detail, so budgeting for your taste in non-catered meals is important.
Travel insurance and visas are also not included in the cost of your trip, and should be booked separately.
What are Contiki's sustainability credentials?
Travel comes with responsibilities. That’s why we’re determined to travel sustainably and consciously, and that’s why we’re willing to take a stand on issues closest to our hearts. Find out more details here.
With the help of our four-point Climate Action Plan, we're now on a journey to Net Zero - committing to carbon reductions and evolving to support the transition to a low-carbon future.
Find out more details here.