London to Cape Town Trans Africa

London to Cape Town Trans Africa

From AUD 7,560.00 + LTP: US$ 1230.00
Trip Length 147 Trip Code AF - OO - 1
Tour Group 10 - 24 Age Range 18 - 55+

London to Cape Town Trans Africa: Tour Information

Our Expedition trips are different from our other departures and other holidays you may have taken – we go through areas where no tourists go, the roads can be bad, food can be limited to what we have stocked on the truck, campsites are few and basic, visas can be hard to get and communication to the outside world limited or unavailable at times. We guarantee; we’ll break down, that we will have to wait some where we don’t really want to be for visas spare parts or just for someone to open a closed road and we’ll have to dig the truck out of mud and sand.

The trip might overrun so finish late; the route can change due to rains, closed roads visa issues, breakdowns and politics. It’s best not to book your return flights home until you finish the trip.

To join this trip you need to be prepared to work as part of a team and to share with the others on the trip. Some of the things you’ll never forget are the satisfaction of getting a 16 ton truck unstuck, cooking over open fires after collecting the firewood, pitching a tent and getting it right even when it rains, going to sleep when its dark and waking at dawn and wanting to get out of your sleeping bag to start another day in which you have no idea of what will happen, washing in rivers, not washing and not caring that your dirty, living out side for months, seeing more than you have ever before, trying to learn French, Arabic or Swahili and having people understand what you say, finding out just how far places are away from where you started and how different places can be and how unaffected out of the way places are from the world we normally live in. Most people who do an expedition find it a lot of fun though of course hard at times.

Visiting: Spain, Morocco, Mauritania, Mali, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Togo, Benin, Nigeria, Cameroon, Gabon, Congo, DR Congo, Angola, Namibia & South Africa

As we will be camping and travelling for an extended period of time, you must be prepared for an adventurous challenge. It can be hot and dusty, and will sometimes be out of contact from the rest of the world. This means no telephones, shops or any other mod cons. We need you to participate and work with all members of the expedition. For the Trans we use sturdy purpose-built vehicles for these rugged off-road conditions.
Week 1 - 4: Gibraltar, Morocco
Week 5: Mauritania
Week 6 - 10: Senegal, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Ghana
Week 11 - 12: Togo, Benin, Nigeria, Cameroon
Week 13: Cameroon
Week 14 - 17: Gabon, Republic of Congo, Cabinda (Angola)
Week 18…: Democratic Republic of Congo
Week 18 - 19: Angola
Week 20 - 21: Namibia
Week 22: South Africa

Week 1 - 4: Europe, Morocco

Due to the nature of the trip, Trans Africa tours do not have a specific day-to-day itinerary.

We start the trip at Gibraltar. Crossing the straits of Gibraltar to Morocco, we visit the coastal capital city of Rabatand visit Casablanca. Meknes, on the high plains is of the many ancient walled cities with covered markets and a labyrinth of narrow winding streets. We visit the ancient Roman ruin of Volubilis, followed by Fes, Marrakech and the Atlas Mountains.

Week 5: Mauritania

We pass into the Sahara Desert and follow the Atlantic Coast - it is never forgotten; oases with cool water surrounded by palms, stretches of sand as big as a small country, old forts, camel trains following centuries old trading routes, and a night sky undiluted by city lights. We go hundreds of miles off road, sometimes digging the truck out of the soft sands to get through.

Week 6 - 10: Senegal, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Ghana

We enter the Sahel; the vast semi arid desert that separates the Sahara from the forests of black Africa and cross the Senegal River into Senegal. We reach St Louis on the coast and the capital Dakar great night clubs. Into Guinea; spectacular scenery, thick jungle, rugged mountains, green as far as they eye can see, except for the red dirt roads, winch ferry spanning the rivers. Trek to chimpanzees, where they live wild in the forest. Ivory Coast and the magnificent Basilica of Our Lady of Peace in Yamoussoukro, modeled on St Peters Basilica in the Vatican. Followed by Abidjan with an impressive skyline of high rise buildings, the ocean and a camp on the beach. InGhana we cross the jungle to the beaches of the Gold Coast and visit the slaving forts.

Week 11 - 12: Togo, Benin, Nigeria, Cameroon

Togo and Benin are only fifty miles wide. Here the religion is the African tradition of Voodoo. On Nakoue Lagoon you can take canoes to visit the fishing villages built high above the water on bamboo stilts. Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa, with 100 million people. We visit Lagos, the commercial capital and largest city in West Africa and head on to Abuja the political capital, then time at Wikki Warm Springs to relax for a few days. Leaving the warm springs we head to Calabar, passing the outskirts of the Cross-River National Park.

Week 13: Cameroon

Entering Cameroon, we stay on the beach at Limbe. For those that are adventurous, you can climb West Africa's largest mountain, Mount Cameroon. From the coast we visit the capital Yaounde.

Week 14 - 17: Gabon, Republic of Congo, Cabinda (Angola)

Leaving Yaounde, we cross into Gabon.

We enter The Republic of Congo.

Driving through bamboo forest tunnels we make our way back to the coast reaching Point Noire. Here you can visit the Jane Goodall Chimp sanctuary, or relax on the beach. We enter Cabinda the oil rich exclave of Angola with the Congo to the East and the Atlantic to the west; where you can watch the flames burning off from the offshore oil rigs.

Week 18-19: Angola

Angola only opened up to tourism in 2004, With the closure of the routes through Sudan, African Trails started going this way through one of the largest and least visited countries in Africa.. The people are friendly and the views astounding. Driving along the red mud roads we reach the coast and the capital Luanda, its very Portuguese in its buildings and Brazilian in its beach attire with a line of beach bars and restaurants in the bay. We follow the coast passing lots of waterfalls on the way to Lubango town 2000 meters high on a plateau. It is home to the third of the great statues of Jesus; the others being in Rio and Lisbon.

Week 20 - 21: Namibia

Entering Namibia, we encounter a vast array of environments and cultures. Once occupied by Germany, Namibia produces a blend of German, African and Afrikaans influences. The Himba peoples of the North are most noted for their red ochre body paint and their traditional lifestyle. Next stop is Etosha Pan National Park. Thousands of years ago this vast saltpan was a lake, until the Kunene River changed its course and deprived the lake of its water source. Now the pan and surrounding bush support large numbers and a wide range of wildlife. We spend a couple of day's game viewing from the truck during the day and spend the evenings around the floodlit water holes at the park's campsites. These water holes provide an excellent opportunity to observe animals that are hard to find during the day, particularly rhino and also smaller animals such as the genet. Elephant, lion, giraffe, zebra, oryx, ostrich, springbok, jackals, hyenas and meercats are also likely to be seen at Etosha.

From wild animals to tame ones, we spend a night at the Cheetah Farm where you can scratch the big cats behind the ears before watching them tuck in to their evening meal. Heading for the Atlantic Ocean Coast, we visit Africa's largest cape fur seal colony, Cape Cross. Swakopmund is an old German colonial seaside resort with plenty of things to do for the energetic and plenty of beer cellars for those after a more relaxing time. The energetic can go horse-riding or sand boarding on the dunes, deep sea fishing in the Atlantic or scenic flights over the coastline. Heading inland, we enter the Namib Desert, famous for the 300m high sand dunes. We enjoy sunrise at the top of the most photographed dune, Dune 45 before taking a tour with local guides into the remote parts of Sossusvlei.

After an overnight stay in the desert we drive south to Fish River Canyon, at 85km long and 400m deep it's second in size only to the Grand Canyon. You can trek down to the bottom of the canyon and, from the viewpoints at the top, watch the setting or rising of the sun. There are seasonal hot springs in the south at Ai Ais. Our last stop in Namibia is the Orange River, which forms the border with South Africa.

Week 22: South Africa

Crossing the river we arrive in South Africa and travel south through Namaqualand, South Africa's prime farming areas. We drive through the mountain valleys of the Cederberg and stony semi-deserts before arriving in Stellenbosch, the centre of one of the Cape's many wine routes. A wine tour with plenty of tasting makes for a great day out.

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Local Tour Payments (LTP) or a Kitty payment, if stated is paid direct to your tour leader / crew on day 1.

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