Our specialist says
Introduce the whole family to the magic of the African bush and its beautiful beaches
A wonderful adventure for the whole family, this trip incorporates the best of what Southern Africa has to offer, a family-friendly luxury safari lodge in South Africa and time spent enjoying the beautiful white sand beaches of Mozambique.
Start by flying overnight to Johannesburg means a gentle start to the trip, and the absence of any significant time difference is certainly a bonus when travelling with younger children. From Johannesburg you will be transferred by road up to the malaria-free Madikwe Game Reserve, a pioneer of family safaris in South Africa and a wonderful place to spend your time. Enjoy game drives that engage the whole family, amazing wildlife viewings and the surroundings of arguably the bets family lodge in SA. Once your safari is finished head back to Johannesburg for an overnight stay, flying to Vilanculos on the Mozambique coast the following morning. There you will be taken to the helipad and whisked over to beautiful Benguerra Island by helicopter for your stay on the beach. Relax, swim in the warm waters of the Indian Ocean, stroll along the beach, go horseriding, snorkelling or on fishing trips…the choices are endless, and this really makes for the perfect end to a family holiday. From Benguerra it is a helicopter back across to the mainland to fly to Johannesburg and catch your overnight flight back to London.
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Day 1: Flying to Johannesburg
Catch the overnight British Airways flight from London Heathrow to Johannesburg, landing at breakfast time tomorrow.
Day 2: On to Madikwe
To ease your arrival process after the long flight, you will be met off the aircraft and escorted through passport control and baggage collection, before being handed over to your driver for the road transfer up to the Madikwe Game Reserve. The drive is around 4 hours, so you will arrive at your home for the next 4 nights, Madikwe Safari Lodge where you will be in a family room at their beautiful Lalapa Lodge, built especially for families. Enjoy a late lunch and some time to relax before meeting your guide and fellow guests for afternoon tea and head out on your first game drive – a chance to start spotting Africa’s fabled Big 5.
Day 3-5: On safari in beautiful Madikwe
Madikwe is one of the most beautiful game reserves in all of South Africa, with the deep red soils lending a dramatic hue to your game drives, whilst the Dwarsberg Mountains provide and impressive backdrop to your view of the bush. Few reserves in South Africa offer such diverse and intense game viewing, especially not in the malaria-free environment that makes Madikwe so attractive for families. Lion, leopard, rhino (both black and white), elephant and buffalo – the members of Africa’s Big 5 – can all be spotted here, along with other highlight species such as giraffe, cheetah, wild dog and hyena. Of course, varied antelope can be seen throughout the reserve, along with a huge variety of birdlife. As Madikwe is a private game reserve, night time safaris are a big part of the experience and guides are allowed to drive off-road when faced with appropriate sightings, both of which significantly enhance your safari experience.
Apart from the undoubted luxury the lodge offers, one of the stand-out features of a visit to Madikwe Safari Lodge is the quality of the guiding and safaris for both adults and children. Whilst many lodges do offer family safaris (and very good ones at that) the guides here really take things to the next level, ensuring game drives are engaging and interesting for both parents and children, making for a more wholesome family travel experience. Equally, they can split parents and children of needs be, allowing adults time to relax by the pool or enjoy longer game drives, whilst children have a more interactive learning experience, help to make pizzas or look for bugs with their guides. Of course, plenty of time is dedicated to relaxing, enjoying the sunshine and superb food, warm natural hospitality and engaging staff for which the lodge is renowned.
Day 6: To Johannesburg
Enjoy a final morning game drive and breakfast in the lodge before being collected and transferred by road back to Johannesburg. Spend the night in the Southern Sun O.R. Tambo Airport a hotel ideally located for accessing the airport tomorrow and with ample facilities to keep you occupied this afternoon. You can spend this afternoon at leisure unwinding after a busy safari.
Day 7: To the beach
After breakfast catch the hotel shuttle back to the airport for the morning flight across to Vilanculos on the Mozambiquan coast. Clear immigration and collect your bags before being met and escorted to the waiting area for your short helicopter flight across to Benguerra Island – a true adventure in itself with the azure waters of the Mozambique Channel spreading out below. From the helipad on Benguerra it is a short stroll to Azura Marlin Beach where you will be spending the next 5 nights. Your time here is at leisure to relax.
Days 8 - 11 : Relaxing on the beach
Sit back, relax and enjoy the glorious surroundings of Benguerra Island, a true paradise on the beach. With the warm waters of the Indian Ocean lapping at the shore, soft sandy beaches and beautiful sunshine, there are few better places to get away from it all and enjoy a few days of utter relaxation. Naturally, if you are looking at being active there is plenty to keep you busy as well, with snorkelling and scuba diving, fishing trips, island drives and horseriding all on offer here. The food, especially the seafood is superb and meal times are a real treat at Marlin Beach. You can also head to the nearby Peri-Peri Beach Club, a new innovation by the owners of Azura and a great spot to enjoy a few hours in the afternoon.
Day 12: Home time
Sadly, today is time to leave, but not after a final morning relaxing on the beach, after which you will be escorted back to the helipad for the flight across to Vilanculos. Connect on to your flight to Johannesburg and then the onward, overnight, British Airways flight to London Heathrow.
Duration: Day 12
Location: South Africa, Africa
This Family Friendly Safari and Beach escape costs from £5,575 per person (based on 2 adults and 2 children under 12 travelling) and includes:
- International and regional flights
- Arrivals package including Meet and Greet at Johannesburg airport
- Private transfers between Johannesburg and the Madikwe Game Reserve
- 4 nights Fully Inclusive at Madikwe Safari Lodge - Family Suite in Lelapa Lodge
- 1 night with Breakfast at Southern Sun O.R. Tambo Airport - Family Room
- 5 nights with Breakfast and Dinner at Azura Marlin Beach - Beach Villa Grande
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