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2 Aussies, 4 weeks, mod budget, but no ideas, please help!

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A friend and I are planning to fly into Harare then make our way down to capetown. We have upto 4 weeks and are not to keen on joining a tour gruop. We thought we might hire a car and drive. I would like to go to a game reserve but not sure where is good. We have a moderate budget. Dont mind camping or hotels. I really want ot make the most of our time and money. If anyone has and suggestions that would be great.
thanks .... Michelle

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    Hi Michelle

    Firstly I would like to say that it is important to know when you are planning to visit as that will affect your planning. I am not an expert on Zimbabwe so I will concentrate on what I think you should do in South Africa. From Zims I would cross the border at Beit Bridge and enter the Kruger National Park through the Pafuri gate. Obviously for this I assume you will have hired a car. If not then pick one up on the South African side of the border at Messina or Louis Trichardt. You should stay at Shingwedzi in Kruger for 2 or 3 nights and then move South to Orpen camp for 2 nights. You can book a bungalow at both of these camps for around Aus$ 30-00 per night. If you do your own BBQ (the facilities are provided) you can save even more money - you can buy meat, bread and veggies in the shops at both rest camps. Then leave the Park from Kruger gate and look for a place to stay in Hazyview so that you can explore the area for another 2 days. This is a very beautiful area with a lot to see. From here you should drive through Swaziland (a fascinating independent kingdom) and head for Kwa-Zulu-Natal. This is a beautiful province where you can choose betwen enjoying the city of Durban and its coastal resorts (a bit like the Goldcoast in Queensland)or the magnificent Drakensberg mountains or Zululand with its rich cultural heritage, game parks and battlefields.

    From Kwa-Zulu-Natal you should drive around the Drakensberg through the FreeState and head for Port Elizabeth. Do not under any circumstances travel from Durban to Port Elizabeth along the coast through the Transkei. You must circumvent this area.

    From Port Elizabeth you should follow the coast to Cape Town. take at least three days for this drive and stop off in Tsitsikamma, Knysna and Plettenberg Bay. This area is known as the garden route and it is beautiful. On arrival in Cape Town head for the airport or the waterfront where you will find Captour information offices. You will find a whole range of accomadation to suite your pocket including backpackers digs and youth hostels. You can see a lot of Cape Town city and the Waterfront on foot but to visit scenic areas like Cape Point and the winelands you will unfortunately need to hire a car or take a bus tour. Why not let tourist information advise you if you are unsure. You can easily spend five days in Cape Town without running out of things to do.

    This whole tour should take about 2-3weeks depending on how much time you spend in Swaziland and Zululand. You will find that prices are very much the same for accomadation and food as in Aus, although your Aussie dollar should take you a little further. If you have camping equipment thats even better. Also consider a motor home then you can go anywhere even Kruger and camp sites are really cheap usually no more than Aus $10-00 per night. Most motor homes are also equiped with cooking utensils. Just be careful to make sure you dont choose gravel roads in a bad condition. If you are unsure about a route ask you lodge host or stop at a police station and ask for advice before going on. If roads are bad or border gates closed they will know.

    I could go on forever so for more info feel free to contact me again. Good luck with you planning.



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