Southern Africa Odyssey
This extraordinary 18-day journey reveals the magnificence of four distinct Southern African nations, from Zimbabwe’s spectacular Victoria Falls and Botswana’s exceptional Chobe National Park to Namibia’s massive dunes and storied coast and South Africa’s beautiful Cape Town. Optional 4-day/3-night extension to the extraordinary Kruger region.
Depending on flight schedules, flight may depart on Thursday, April 8.
Upon arrival we transfer to our hotel in the suburb of Rosebank, where our rooms will be ready for our early check-in. As guests’ arrival times may vary greatly, we have no group activities planned.
54 on Bath Hotel (B)
We meet our fellow travelers today as we embark on a tour of the Soweto district of Johannesburg. Here we see the home of former Archbishop Desmond Tutu; visit the home, now a museum, of the late Nelson Mandela; and tour the moving Hector Pieterson Memorial and Museum, where we learn more about apartheid and the Soweto uprising of 1976. Then we hear fascinating stories from a local Sowetan who was present during the uprising, followed by lunch at a local restaurant. Tonight we enjoy a welcome dinner together.
54 on Bath Hotel (B,L,D)
We fly this morning to Victoria Falls, first “discovered” by explorer David Livingstone and claimed for Great Britain’s Queen Victoria in 1855. With its 300-foot-deep gorge and thundering spray, “Vic” Falls is a wonder of the natural world. This afternoon we see it for ourselves on a guided walk.
Victoria Falls Hotel (B,D)
This morning we visit a local school where we have the opportunity to interact with the children and teachers, then spend some time exploring the town of Victoria Falls. Late this afternoon we embark on a Sundowner dinner cruise on the Zambezi River.
Victoria Falls Hotel (B,D)
This morning we set off on a rhino safari in open-top safari vehicles. This afternoon is at leisure; this evening we attend a talk on David Livingstone’s travels, trials, and travails.
Victoria Falls Hotel (B,D)
Known for a diverse terrain that attracts an exceptional array of wildlife, Chobe National Park in nearby Botswana boasts one of the largest concentrations of game in all Africa, including the world’s largest elephant population (some 120,000), as well as zebra, lion, hippo, giraffe, impala, wildebeest, buffalo, and more. We’re sure to see some of them on today’s full-day excursion to Chobe, where we take a morning game drive and an afternoon game cruise.
Victoria Falls Hotel (B,L,D)
Today we fly via Johannesburg to the Namibian capital of Windhoek, arriving late this evening.
Windhoek Country Club (B)
After a brief tour of Namibia’s largest city, we set out through the central Namib Desert of vast gravel plains and rocky mountains. Late this afternoon we reach our lodge in the heart of the dune desert.
Sossusvlei Lodge (B,L,D)
We rise with the sun to see the world’s highest crested dunes at Sossusvlei, their red-orange hues constantly changing in the early morning light. Here we have the opportunity to climb the velvet-like sand of Big Mama, as the locals call the largest dune.
Sossusvlei Lodge (B,L,D)
We travel today through the Namib desert en route to Swakopmund, Namibia’s largest port.
Swakopmund Hotel (B,L,D)
From Walvis Bay this morning, we take a cruise along the storied Namibian coast, getting a mariner’s perspective on this striking region known by local tribespeople as “the land God created in anger.” Along the way we’ll see Cape fur seals and sea birds, including petrels. We enjoy lunch on board before disembarking and returning to Swakopmund, where the remainder of the day is at leisure.
Swakopmund Hotel (B,L)
We fly to Cape Town today. After time at leisure to explore as we wish, we dine together tonight at a local restaurant.
The Table Bay Hotel (B,D)
Today we tour the Winelands, South Africa’s renowned wine-growing region. Amidst the beautiful scenery, we visit a winery for a tour, tasting, and lunch. We return to Cape Town mid-afternoon; dinner tonight is on our own in this cosmopolitan city.
The Table Bay Hotel (B,L)
This morning we travel to the Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve, home to more than 250 species of birds, and where we ride a funicular to the summit for stupendous views. After a seafood lunch in historic Simon’s Town, we visit Boulders Beach to see a colony of enchanting African penguins up close.
The Table Bay Hotel (B,L)
Our tour of Cape Town this morning features a visit to the Bo-Kaap neighborhood, the city’s historical center of Cape Malay culture. We also pay a visit to acclaimed Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden, one of the world’s great botanic gardens. Then we enjoy glorious bird’s-eye views of Cape Town as we ride by cable car 3,500 feet to the flat top of the city’s signature Table Mountain. This afternoon is at leisure; tonight, we celebrate our southern Africa odyssey at a farewell dinner.
The Table Bay Hotel (B,D)
We transfer to the Cape Town airport this morning for our return flights to the U.S. (B)
We arrive in the U.S. today and connect with our flights home.
Cost and Details
Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, Chicago: $8,754
Boston, New York, Washington DC: $8,454
Denver, Portland: $8,954
Land Only: $7,095 (transfers not included)
Single Room Supplement: $1,695
Airline upgrades on round-trip Trans-Atlantic flight:
Business Class - $5,495 per person in addition to the costs above (upgrades are subject to availability and pricing is subject to change).
Please call if your city is not listed. Prices are per person based on double occupancy and include airline taxes, surcharges, and fees of $1,359, which are subject to change until final payment is made. All tour prices above (excluding airline taxes, surcharges, and fees) are guaranteed.
Round-trip air transportation from listed cities; all flights within itinerary; 15 nights’ accommodations in Deluxe and Superior First Class hotels; 34 meals: 16 breakfasts, 8 lunches, 10 dinners; Extensive sightseeing as described, including all entrance fees; Services of an Odysseys Unlimited Tour Director; Educational lectures; Additional Commonwealth Club representative at 20 guests; Private motorcoach transportation throughout your trip; Luggage handling for one bag per person; Gratuities for local guides, dining room servers, airport and hotel porters, and all drivers.
Airfare when purchasing a Land Only package; costs of passports and visas; personal expenses such as beverages, laundry, room service, and meals not specified; airport transfers when purchasing a Land Only package; gratuities to your Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. Tour Director, which are at your discretion (suggested gratuities: $10-$15 per traveler, per day); communication charges; optional sightseeing; and travel protection insurance. Additional baggage fees may apply and are subject to change at any time. You should confirm directly with your airline(s) prior to departure.
Optional post-tour extension
Kruger: Kapama Private Game Reserve, April 25 – 29, 2020
Cost: $1,995, per person, based on double occupancy
Single room supplement: $695
Included in Extension Cost:
Round-trip air transportation to/from Hoedspruit (Kruger), inclusive of airline taxes and fees; 3 nights’ accommodations at Kapama Southern Camp (Deluxe); 8 meals: 3 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 3 dinners; 5 guided wildlife drives (in open safari vehicles); Services of the lodge’s excellent staff; Transfers to/from airport
Travel on this itinerary will be in fairly remote regions, especially in Namibia. You should be prepared for lengthy drives on unpaved and bumpy roads. The trip also includes walking at least 2-3 miles per day, including considerable walking up hills and stairs and on uneven surfaces. Several small hotels do not have elevators. Participants should be in good physical condition to keep up with an active group. Guests must be able to get on and off motor coaches on their own.
- Good physical condition required
- Long days of touring
- Bumpy roads
- Considerable amounts walking uphill and on uneven terrain
There is free WiFi/Internet at all hotels on this Tour.
Terms and Conditions
Cancellations, Refunds, and Changes
If you must cancel your trip, the effective date of cancellation will be upon Odysseys Unlimited, Inc.’s receipt of your notification. Refunds for cancellations are subject to the following per person charges:
- Cancel 95 days or more before departure: $200 charge
- Cancel 94-65 days before departure: 50% of tour price
- Cancel 64-30 days before departure: 75% of tour price
- Cancel 29-0 days before departure: no refund.
If you make any changes to your reservation from 94 to 30 days prior to departure, Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. will apply a $100 per person administrative fee, in addition to any fees or penalties imposed by third parties. Changes are subject to availability and cannot be guaranteed. If your reservation changes from double occupancy to single occupancy for any reason, you will be charged the single supplement. No changes are allowed within 30 days of departure. Upon reservation, you must provide your full legal name as it appears on your passport, as well as your date of birth and gender. In the event an airline ticket is issued with incorrect information you have provided, you will be responsible for charges associated with the ticket’s reissue.
We require membership to the Commonwealth Club to travel with us. People who live outside of the Bay Area may purchase a worldwide membership. To learn about membership types and to purchase a membership, visit our membership page or call (415)597-6720.
We strongly recommend the purchase of trip cancellation insurance, which is available for coverage of expenses in conjunction with cancellation due to illness or accident. Baggage insurance is also recommended. In the event you must cancel your participation in the travel program, trip cancellation insurance may be your only source of reimbursement. You will be sent information about insurance upon registration. Information will be sent upon registration and can be viewed on the Travel Insurance Services website.
The liability of the Commonwealth Club, as sponsor, and Odysseys Unlimited, Inc., as tour operator, is strictly limited. Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. purchases transportation, hotel accommodations, and restaurant and other services from independent suppliers not under our control. We serve only as agents for these suppliers in securing tour arrangements, and therefore will not accept responsibility for wrongful, negligent, or arbitrary acts or omissions of these independent contractors, or of their employees, agents, servants, or representatives. The Commonwealth Club and Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. are not liable for injury, damage, loss, accident, or delay that may be caused by events not within our control, including, without limitation, acts of terrorism, war, strikes, the defect of any vehicle, or the negligence or default of any third party. All coupons, receipts, and tickets issued are subject to the terms and conditions specified by the air carriers, cruise lines, and other independent suppliers. We will make every effort to operate our tours as planned, but we reserve the right to make itinerary changes as necessary. If unforeseen circumstances require us to change a hotel, we will select alternative accommodations of the same or better quality.
Health and Medical Issues
We request that you be in good health to participate in this tour. There is a considerable amount of walking over uneven terrain, and you must be able to get on and off motorcoaches, boats, and safari vehicles, and go up and down steps that may not have handrails on your own. Travel in Namibia will be in fairly remote regions. You should be prepared for lengthy drives on unpaved and very bumpy roads. We regret that we cannot offer individual assistance; in such cases you must be accompanied by a companion who will assist you. Please note that many of our tour itineraries, for reasons beyond our control, do not accommodate wheelchairs. Please call or e-mail us to inquire and we will do our best to answer any questions you may have. We reserve the right to remove anyone whose physical or mental condition, in our opinion, compromises the operation of the tour or detracts from the enjoyment or safety of the other passengers. In that event, the Commonwealth Club and Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. assume no financial responsibility for any unused portion of the tour.
Air Transportation – Important Information
Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. includes in its tour price round-trip economy air from designated gateway cities as shown, and contracts with those airlines the company feels provide the level of service, routings, and value necessary for your entire trip. While another airline may offer a more direct connection, it may be at a price unavailable at the lower group rates. You will receive your preliminary air schedule approximately 2½ months prior to departure. Please note that seat assignment on your international flight is usually done at airport check-in. Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. is unable to guarantee any seat assignments. Due to the nature of tour operator tickets, other restrictions apply, including, but not limited to, frequent flyer mileage accrual, stopovers, alternate travel dates, upgrades, and airline taxes and fees. If you prefer to make your own travel arrangements, Land Only is available on most tours. Since international and domestic air schedules are subject to change at any time, we recommend that if you choose to make your own airline reservations, you do not purchase non-refundable tickets or those with high penalties for changes. If you choose to make your own air arrangements, Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. shall not have any liability for any loss resulting from cancellation of this tour or changes in this tour.
Commonwealth Club of California-CST# 2096889-40