Advise on Trip to Cape Town and Victoria Falls

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Jan 8th, 2004, 11:38 AM
  #1
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Advise on Trip to Cape Town and Victoria Falls

Hi everyone,

My partner and I are traveling to South Africa for the first time in February and we could use some advise. We fly nonstop from NY to Joburg and the connect to Cape Town (arriving nearly midnight on Feb 12). We will be in the Cape Town area until the night of February 17th when we fly back to Joburg. From here we planned to catch a morning flight on the 18th to Victoria Falls and stay there until the 21st. We'd return to 21st and have a nearly two full days in the Joburb-Pretoria area. Ok - here are my questions:

Can anyone recommend a place to stay in Cape Town (or nearby in Camps Bay, Bantry Bay, etc)? Really want to stey near a beach though.

Any recommendations on Victoria Falls? Is three days too much? Is there a place to see game near there?

Would it make better sense to fly back to Joburg earlier and visit a game park near there?

Any help would be appreciated!

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Jan 8th, 2004, 01:22 PM
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Magellan98,

If you could give us an idea as to what price range per person you are prepared to pay for your Cape Town accommodation it would help.

R400-R600 /person/night ($65-$90)
R600-R1000/person/night ($90-$150)
Higher than the above.

Once you have answered the above I am sure that someone on this board, inclusive of myself, should be able to help you.


Selwyn Davidowitz
Very proudly part of the wonderful nation of South Africa

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Jan 8th, 2004, 01:26 PM
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We just returned from 1 week J'burg and 2 weeks Cape Town. While in J'burg, we made the 7 hour drive to Sabi Sands and stayed at Elephant Plains which was excellent in all respects. My point is that the game parks are not close to J'burg really. With only two days, it wouldn't be relaxing.
While in Cape Town, don't miss going to Cape Point Nature Reserve, the vineyards in Paarl, Franschoek and Stellenbosch. The 3-hour kayaking excursion from Simonstown is also excellent.
We stayed with family, so cannot comment beyond fact that Camps Bay is very trendy and pricey. If you'll have a car, I would stay near Fish Hoek beach / Sun Valley as the beach is lovely for swimming/boogey boarding.
Haven't been to Vic Falls.
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Jan 8th, 2004, 03:38 PM
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From Victoria Falls, you are within a couple of hours of both Chobe National Park (Botswana) and Hwange (Zimbabwe), two great national parks. Of the two, I have only been to Chobe, which I highly recommend -- it may be worth looking into if you can spend one night at Chobe, and do some game drives and a cruise to see game from the river (a safari highlight). If you are US citizens, you do not need visa to visit Botswana.
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Jan 8th, 2004, 07:26 PM
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I guess I was hoping to pay US$50-75 per person per night for a room.

Thanks in advance!

(Great website Selwyn!)
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Jan 8th, 2004, 09:35 PM
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Magellan98,

Thanks for the kind comments about my website. - Appreciated

Relative to what you have told me price wise may I suggest that you look at Avanti guesthouse in Bantry Bay. http://www.avanti.co.za. I must at this stage add that guesthouses include breakfast in their rates which does not generally happen in hotels. At Avanti you enjoy this meal in the wonderful, friendly breakfast room. Furthermore the guesthouse is virtually on the sea and if you role out of bed in the morning one can go for a 8KM walk all along the Atlantic seaboard starting from just outside Avanti.

The guesthouse is run by a wonderful couple viz. Johan and Marie Smuts. They are hosts extraordinaire. Their guesthouse is always very clean and tidy. The guesthouse is also in a very secure area. When you are in the guesthouse you have total freedom of movement. It is a wonderful free and easy style of holidaying. What also is most important is that because of the size of the guesthouse (5 rooms) you will NOT be in amongst the hordes of tourists as you might only have a couple of other guests at the guesthouse while you are there. I can but only hope that you find that Avanti has availability for you as Febuary is a busy period in the tourist calendar in Cape Town. All in all I recommend Avanti HIGHLY and can assure you that you will NOT be disappointed if you stay at this venue.

In case you cannot find accommodation at Avanti may I suggest you look at the following websites:

_______________

Redbourne Hilldrop
http://www.redbourne.co.za/index.html

Sharon and Johnny are excellent hosts. Their venue is safe and clean. Close to city as well as hotspots even though you will have to cab or drive to all places. Great views from breakfast room

________________

Cape Colonial
http://www.capecolonial.com/welcome.htm

Well located and a walk into the city. Safe and clean. Rooms are smaller than Redbourne but certainly adequate
_______________

These guesthosues also fall into your price range and even though they are not near to the sea they are close to the city and are great venues to stay at. Please note that I think you will have difficulty finding a great guesthouse in Camps Bay or Bantry Bay that falls into your price range hence I have suggested the above venues. With that said I must mention that Avanti is an exception to the rule.

Hope this all helps.

Selwyn Davidowitz
Very proudly part of the wonderful nation of South Africa

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Jan 9th, 2004, 04:40 AM
  #7
sandi
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magellan98 -

I would like to add/agree to "thit_cho" comments. Yes, you can do 2-days at Chobe in Botswana, the transfer from VFA is about 1-hr to the border (no VISA is required), then whatever time it takes to get to lodge chosen; OR you can just stay in Zim and go to Hwange for that time; you don't need 3 days in Vic Falls only. But the with only 1-1/2days back in JNB, you'd have to find activities for time there - a few posters have recommended the Soweto tour and some other activities in/around the JNB area, so do a "search" on this board for "activities/sites in Johannesburg" for these.

From the way I count you will have 11days or nights (you don't mention your departure date) in Southern Africa, and assume you have your flight from CPT to JNB (on the 17th)and then to Vic Falls (18th), and return to JNB (on 21st) confirmed.

However, if you can change, without penalty, I would change the flight from CPT on the 17th to the first flight in the morning (I believe 6:30am) and get the ongoing flight to VFA (on 17th) at about 10am, and then change the return flight from VFA to JNB on the 21st to the 22nd (4pm), what you could have would be:

CPT - 4nt/4dys (nts of 2/12,13,14,15
VFA - 1nt/1dy (nt of 2/16
CHO - 2nt/2dys (nts 2/17,18
HWG - 3nt/3dys (nts of 2/19,20,21
JNB - 1nt/1dy (nt of 2/22

you could do both Chobe and Hwange and have very interesting safari experiences.

However, in reading a further post of yours, you mention you only want to spend $50-$75/nt. Is that only in CPT? or anywhere? If anywhere, then know that prices at Chobe and Hwange which include room/tent and 3-meals daily and all game drives (alcohol is extra) and transfers, will run more than that even at the least expensive places.

If your budget won't accommodate these extra prices, and you're fixed with flights, then you can, if you are interested, participate in activities at VFA for the 3-days - bungee jumping, white water rafting, and others.

Hope you work something out. And let us know what you decide.
 
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Jan 9th, 2004, 03:31 PM
  #8
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I was interest in paying $80 to $150 for a room a night in Cape Town only. Has anyone ever heard of Camps Bay Nest or this location: Situated just off the Camps Bay beachfront adjacent to the Camps Bay Promenade shopping centre. Fifty metres up the road from the only set of traffic lights on the beach road.

Thanks
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Jan 9th, 2004, 08:15 PM
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Magellan98,

Must say that I had never heard of Camps Bay Nest until you mentioned the venue. From what I have seen on the websites of the various agents who offer Camps Bay Nest as a place of stay, the position and location seems to be too good to be true. Relative to the cost of any apartment in this location it could be the find of the year or it also could be that there has to be something that is missing from Camps Bay Nest. I suspect the latter and you will probably find that the apartment is very small and more than likely is a back room of a bulding in the area that has been converted into an apartment. With that being said one hardly spends time at ones place of sleeping when on holiday and these problems could well be of no problem to you.

I somehow or other doubt as to whether somebody on this board is going to respond that they have stayed at Camps Bay Nest however it would be wrong to pre-judge this total situation.

Next week I am intending on doing a recognisance in Camps Bay to look at 2 other accommodation venues for guests of mine and if I have the opportunity I will look into Camps Bay Nest too. If I do so I will give you a first hand report in response.

Hope this helps.

Selwyn Davidowitz
Very proudly part of the wonderful nation of South Africa
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Jan 10th, 2004, 07:30 AM
  #10
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I tend to agree with your take on this place Selwyn, which is why I was fishing for additional info. Unfortunately Avanti House was booked.
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