Johannesburg's contrasts are some of the most extreme in the world; poverty-stricken and overcrowded Alexandra is surrounded by some of the richest suburbs in South Africa, and downtown hundreds of homeless struggle to survive around the Stock Exchange. The contrast between suburb and township is mirrored nationwide, but is more extreme here because of the intense wealth of many of the suburbs, and the sheer size of the townships and their satellite squatter camps. Yet the city as a whole continues to suck in people and skills from all over the country, making it the financial, commercial and cultural powerhouse of South Africa.
The town of Victoria Falls is a pleasant place, created for visitors. There are hiking routes and rental bicycles. There are also trinket shops, selling everything from cheap T-shirts to antique African musical instruments. Carvings of masks and animals are a tradition around the area (as is the bargaining required to purchase them for a reasonable price). The Victoria Falls Hotel, a short walk from the falls, still operates in full colonial splendor and should be seen even by those not staying there. Visit Crocodile Ranch and Craft Village - a fascinating glimpse into Zimbabwean culture. Visit Livingstone, just across the border in Zambia? more than just a tourist town and more character than Victoria Falls. Another appealing side trip is to Chobe National Park, in neighboring Botswana. Chobe is one of the finest game parks in the world.
The park at Hwange covers an area of 5,656 miles². Hwange specialties include thousands of elephants, over 100 different types of animals including Africa’s Big Five and 400 species of birds, strategically placed viewing hides, luxury safari lodges with their own 'off the beaten track' traversing areas, and night drives from the private lodges. These sub-tropical thorn and sand flats on the edge of the Kalahari Desert, were once home to nomadic San (bushmen) who lived off the land and feasted on herds of migrating game. It is a place of great contrasts between wet and dry season, with extremes reminding of the life-giving properties of water.
Mana Pools National Park is a wildlife conservation park where the mighty Zambezi River flows and the flood plains turn into lakes or "Mana Pools" of Hurungwe, Zimbabwe. Mana which means "four" consists of four large inland pools carved out by the Zambezi thousands of years ago. This World Heritage Site has a wide range of large mammals from elephants, lions to zebras, and over 350 species of bird and aquatic life such as hippopotamus and crocodiles.
Price are per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability and change without notice. Prices reflect land only accommodations, airfare is additional. Blackout dates/seasonal supplements may apply.
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