South Africa Itinerary for Discovery Student Adventure’s South Africa Pilot Trip
Day 2 Cape Town, South Africa
Arrive into Johannesburg connecting to flight to Cape Town, South Africa! It is tucked into the arms of a broad bay, surrounded by white-sand beaches with the magnificent Table Mountain rising as a backdrop to the city. It is home to South Africa’s parliament and reflects South Africa’s history and heritage of cultures, religions, styles and flavors.
Overnight: Cape Town
Thursday June 4th, 2009
Day 3 Cape Town, South Africa
Receive an in-country orientation. Ascend via cable car to view the Indian and Atlantic Oceans, as well as the Cape peninsula, from the symbol of Cape Town, Table Mountain.
Discover Cape Point and learn about the African Penguin at Boulders Beach, and about preservation efforts. Experience an orientation at SANCCOB (South African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds). Be briefed about the infamous Treasure oil spill and be guided through areas of SANCCOB’s rehabilitation center.
Overnight: Cape Town
Friday June 5th, 2009
Day 4 Cape Town, South Africa
* A hands-on opportunity to do some drumming! Engage in a “drumming circle,” learning the basic beats and participate in a pulsating rhythmic orchestra conducted by the drum teacher/leader. Your tutors and co-drummers will be youth from the LoveLife Youth Center, which support underprivileged youth in the area and provides them opportunities.
* Visit former political prison, now monument to the Freedom Struggle, Robben Island. Visit Mandela’s cell and be guided around the island and learn its history.
Overnight: Cape Town
Saturday June 6th, 2009
Day 5 Cape Town, South Africa
* Discover Shark Alley! (2hrs drive from CapeTown) there are two islands situated next to each other and due to a number of geographical reasons – one being the shallow and narrow channel that runs between these two islands – it has become known as one of only two unique areas in the world, where the chances to view the great white shark, rises exceptionally high and earned the nickname of “Shark Alley”. Other wildlife species such as Cape Fur Seals, Cape Gannets, Cape Cormorants, Jackass penguins, whales and dolphins are also likely to be sighted. Spend the day with researchers, as they walk you through their research and conservation efforts, as well as give you the opportunity to participate and gather data.
* Come face to face with your subject! The Great White Shark is one of the most feared predators and coming up close and personal with them is an awesome experience. The cage floats partially above and below the water surface where you can dive a few feet down either via snorkel techniques or with an air supply and look eye to eye with this amazing creature
Overnight: Cape Town
Sunday June 7th, 2009
Day 6 Johannesburg, South Africa
* Explore the Apartheid Museum. Likened to the Holocaust Museum in D.C., this museum takes you into the beating heart of the Freedom Struggle, the grip of the National Party’s Apartheid, and the giddy days of liberation.
* Visit Nelson Mandela’s humble little house in Orlando West, Soweto, now called the Mandela Family Museum – an interesting stopover for those keen to imbibe a slice of authentic history regarding the world’s most famous former prisoner.
* Observe the massive SOuth WEstern TOwnship (SO-WE-TO )of Johannesburg, the heart of the Freedom Struggle and home to a dichotomy of people’s, languages, economic groups, traditions and modernity.
Meet some incredible children at the Takalani Orphanage – home for physically and mentally disabled children. Take part in an interactive program with the children to further enrich the benefit of your visit. This may include a group art project, preparing a meal for and serving the children, or other activities or needs that best provide a meaningful encounter.
Monday June 8th, 2009
Day 7 Johannesburg, South Africa
* Experience the Cradle of Humankind: Sterkfontein Caves. Within the caves, scientists have discovered many hominid and other animal fossils, dating back more than 4-million years, to the birth of humanity. These fossils, both found in the Sterkfontein Caves in the Cradle of Humankind, tell us much about the precursors of modern humans, Homo sapiens.
* Early humans and their ancestors came to the Maropeng area to use the local rocks for tool-making as they pursued a hunter-gatherer way of life. The technology of these tools suggests they were made sometime between 1.0 and 0.5 million years ago during the Earlier Stone Age, prior to the appearance of modern Homo sapiens.
* Lesedi is a multi cultural village set amongst the pristine bushveld and rocky hills north of Johannesburg. Experience the vibrant and colorful traditions of the Basotho, Ndebele, Pedi, Xhosa and Zulu peoples. Be part of traditional Africa for just a short while as your guide brings the culture of each tribe alive to you.
Tuesday June 9th – Thursday June 11th, 2009
Days 8-10 Kruger National Park, South Africa
* Escape into the tranquillity and magnificence of the African bushveld, to the famous Kruger National Park.
* The Kruger National Park was founded by the government in 1926. Today, Kruger National Park encompasses nearly 12,000 square miles of wildlife safari country and supports more than 800 species of animals living in their natural habitats. The park, rich in biodiversity, stretches for 350 km from south to north along the Mozambican border before meeting up with the Zimbabwean border in the north. This is a paradise for the wildlife enthusiast and is a world leader in dynamic environmental management techniques and policies based on experience gained over more than a century.
* Open vehicle game drives each evening and morning will bring you up close and personal with the Big Five (the lion, leopard, elephant, buffalo and rhino) and all the other inhabitants of the bush.
* Learn more about different ecosystems, habitat, game and birds from Park Rangers and Experts.
* When night falls, look for nocturnal animals with spotlights.
* While you are at Kruger National Park, Rangers will schedule a Game Darting and transport for your observation. This experience will further your education into the management of the Park, as well as hands on knowledge of encountering wildlife in the field for research and transportation.
Overnight Highlight: Bush Camp within Kruger National Park
Friday June 12th, 2009
Day 11 Johannesburg, South Africa
* Final goodbyes to the wonders of this preserved park before travelling back to Johannesburg for the evening.