When you hear ‘Big Five’ you probably think wildlife, but we’re giving it a whole new meaning on this ultimate five-stop trip. Spend 13 nights with Black Tomato and we’ll show you a few of our favourite spots in South Africa and Mozambique. You’ll start this adventure in Cape Town, exploring the city like a local with our expert guides before being whisked off to two of the most luxurious spots in Grootbos then Franschhoek where nature, food and wine reign supreme. Stop four and you’re off to the exclusive Sabi Sand game reserve where Africa’s most exotic wildlife is right on your doorstep. For an epic end to your trip, you’ll spend your final few days on Benguerra Island in Mozambique, where stripped-back nature and the finest luxury are perfectly blended.
Captivating Cape Town
Arrive in South Africa’s most cosmopolitan city, Cape Town, where you’ll hole up in luxury at Ellerman House for three nights. Perched on the slopes of Lion’s Head in the exclusive Bantry Bay this will be your base to explore all that the thriving city has to offer. Spend your days conquering majestic Table Mountain, wining and dining on the V&A Waterfront, cooking your way through colourful Bo Kaap and sunning yourself on the stunning beaches (be on the lookout for a few native African penguins). Art lovers are in for a treat as well; South African masterpieces sit right on your doorstep in the famed Ellerman House gallery and we can also organise curator-led tours of the iconic Zeitz MOCAA.
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Back to nature at Grootbos
On day four you’ve got a two-hour transfer to Grootbos Forest Lodge, in the whale-watching capital of the Hermanus area. You’ll spend two nights in the best of both worlds; the lodge sits in a fairy-tale forest that boasts some of the world’s most unique plant, bird and animal species all whilst overlooking the sandy shores of Walker Bay. Feast on the finest cuisines and wines whilst watching spectacular sunsets or join the specialised guides in exploring the natural wonderland on foot, horseback or 4×4 drives. Don’t worry about leaving this romantic paradise because we’ve got plenty more in store for you.
Indulge your senses in Franschhoek
Next up you’ll take a two-hour transfer to Franschhoek to get back to basics in the best possible way. Spend two nights at Babylonstoren, an idyllic Cape Dutch farm that sits on the slopes of the Simonsberg Mountain and indulge your inner homebody. Stroll out onto the 200-hectare farm to admire the orchards, take a tour through the fruit and vegetable gardens and take a dip in the farm dam if it takes your fancy. This is a serious foodie spot as well, pick your own salad and dine alfresco in our favourite picnic spot. When you’re full of home-grown delicacies meet the local wine makers before tucking into some of their prized creations as you take in the mountain sceneries.
Spot the big five in Sabi Sand
For the next leg of your South African adventure, you’ll fly from Nelspruit to the unspoiled bush of the exclusive Sabi Sand game reserve. Here one of our favourite lodges, Dulini, will become your home for the next three nights. Nestled within the bush, you’ll barely have to leave the deck to view Africa’s most magnificent wildlife. It doesn’t get any better than at sunrise and sunset though when you’ve got the best opportunity to see a few big cats wandering past. If you do venture out on a guided drive (unmissable if you ask us), the place is packed with wildlife – elephants, lions, rhino, buffalo and leopard are just waiting for you to spot them. Our favourite part? You’re almost guaranteed to spot more animals than people in this exclusive wilderness.
Island life in Mozambique
After a couple of days in the bush, it’s time for a bit of oceanside luxury, and we know the perfect place: Azura Retreat Benguerra, Mozambique, which sits in a marine national park. Here a kaleidoscope of colour greets you both above and below the ocean; don a mask and snorkel to explore the incredible Two Mile coral reef or spy on the turtles that nest on the shoreline. In the evenings take a traditional sunset Dhow cruise before taking a dip in your own private plunge pool and snuggling up under Egyptian cotton sheets beneath a thatched roof. Be sure to save some time for a massage or two at the amazing spa as well. Trust us, there’s no better way to explore this amazing side of Africa.