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Cape Town + Rovos Rail

Hex River Valley, Rovos Rail, South Africa
Cape Town panorama, South Africa
Johannesburg, South Africa
Cable car, Table Mountain, Cape Town, South Africa
Bo-Kaap, Cape Town, South Africa
Table Mountain from the Waterfront, Cape Town, South Africa
Dining, Rovos Rail, South Africa
Kimberley excursion, Rovos Rail, South Africa
Royal split twin, Rovos Rail, South Africa
Incl flights, accommodation & transfers
From   £2699 £2399
10 days

Holiday highlights

  • Experience the diverse landscapes of South Africa from the luxury of the Rovos Rail

  • See African penguins at Boulders Beach.

  • Discover the history of apartheid in Johannesburg.

  • Admire the panoramic views from Table Mountain and soak up the vibrancy of Cape Town.

  • Fly overnight from the UK to Cape Town. Sitting on a peninsula below the imposing Table Mountain, Cape Town brings together the cultures, cuisines and landscapes of South Africa into one amazing city. From the pristine coastlines and verdant nature reserves to the traditional fishing communities and cosmopolitan centre, there is plenty to explore.

    Meals included: Meal included on the international flight.

  • After arriving in Cape Town, you are met at the airport and taken to your hotel. The rest of the day is free to get to know the city. Perhaps enjoy a leisurely afternoon browsing the shops and restaurants on the waterfront or relax on Clifton Beach. There is also Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, home to an impressive collection of indigenous plants, including fynbos heather and proteas (the national flower) scattered amongst pleasant pathways and secluded spots. Lion’s Head is Table Mountain’s smaller brother, and forms part of the dramatic backdrop to the city. Upon walking to the top of the distinctive shaped mountain slope resembling a crouching lion you will be rewarded with panoramic views of the city.

    Meals included: Meal included on the international flight.

  • Take the optional half-day Robben Island excursion which involves a ferry ride across Table Bay to visit the infamous Maximum-Security Prison where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for 27 years, and Murray’s Bay Harbour attractions including the Muslim shrine. During the visit, you will be told moving stories by a former prisoner who will be your guide. Get private access to Mandela’s cell and see others where countless convicts were incarcerated, and learn about how the island became internationally known for its institutional brutality during the apartheid years. Alternatively, spend a further day taking in the sights and sounds of Cape Town.

    Meals included: Breakfast at the hotel.

  • Spend the day getting to know Cape Town. See the best of this fascinating city on our optional half-day Iconic Cape Town excursion, which lets you discover the spirit of the Mother City, experience her vibrant cultures and history and enjoy botanical scenery. Highlights include a cable car ride up Table Mountain and visits to various other sites. Explore the market of Greenmarket Square where you can haggle with local vendors for beautiful wares, marvel at the colourful houses and cobbled streets of the Cape Malay Quarter, walk through the peaceful Company Gardens and visit the Castle of Good Hope, Grand Parade and District Six Museum.

    Meals included: Breakfast at the hotel.

  • Spend a further day taking in the delights of Cape Town, or venture out to see the highlights and appreciate the surrounding natural beauty on our optional full-day Peninsula & Penguins excursion. Travel along the Atlantic seaboard with its gorgeous beaches and rugged mountains to Cape Point. Along the way take a boat ride to Seal Island, a small land mass located 5.7 km off the northern beaches of False Bay. The island is so named because of the 64,000 Cape Fur Seals that occupy it. If open (weather dependent), continue on Chapman’s Peak Drive, renowned for being one of the most stunning roads in the world. Upon reaching Cape Point, you can take the Flying Dutchman Funicular to the old lighthouse and admire the panoramic views from the tip of the peninsula. After a delicious seafood lunch in a restaurant, return to Cape Town via the False Boy coast, stopping to visit Boulders Beach which is renowned for being home to a colony of African penguins.

    Meals included: Breakfast at the hotel. Lunch is included on the Peninsula & Penguins excursion.

  • The journey begins in Cape Town, cradled by the imposing bulk of Table Mountain, Devil’s Peak and Lion’s Head. Enjoy a glass of bubbly in the departure lounge, where you will be serenaded by a harp (or strings) whilst being greeted by the staff. The owner, Rohan Vos, personally sees off nearly every train, giving guests a warm welcome and introduction to the journey. Board the train around 11am and begin your journey through the scenic winelands of the Cape. You are shown to your suite where you have the chance to freshen up, before being shown to the lounge and observation car to meet fellow guests and enjoy a drink from the bar, where all drinks are included. Time on the Rovos Rail is spent getting to know other passengers over a drink, enjoying sumptuous silver-service meals and marvelling at the breath-taking scenery from the comfort of the observation cars. The train reaches Worcester in the Hex River Valley before climbing 750 metres up the face of the escarpment, followed by four long tunnels. After a three-course lunch which is served in the Victorian-style dining car at around 1pm, spend some time enjoying the scenery, then move to the lounge for high tea. Disembark at Matjiesfontein for an opportunity to stroll through the authentic Victorian village and visit the museum, then return to the train for sundowners. The journey passes through the haunting barrenness of the Great Karoo, and the gong is sounded around 7:30pm, calling guests to the dining carriage for a three-course dinner in their finery. Dinner is a long and leisurely affair featuring exquisite food and inspiring wine pairings. Following dinner, enjoy a drink in the bar then retire to your suite where you host will have laid out tea, coffee and after-dinner drinks. The train stops travelling overnight (this can change if there are delays), so everyone can enjoy a motionless rest.   

    Meals included: Breakfast, lunch, high tea and dinner.

  • Today, begin with a hearty breakfast in the elegant dining car, followed by a leisurely morning in the lounge to observe the ever-changing scenery. Lunch is served around 1pm, and then disembark to visit Kimberley, the capital of the Northern Province. Enjoy a tour of the Diamond Mine Museum and the world’s largest manmade excavation, the Big Hole. Notable personalities such as Cecil Rhodes and Barney Barnato made their fortunes here, and the roots of the De Beers Company can be traced to the early days of the mining town. The train departs again at 4:30pm, as high tea is served. Lesser Flamingos can be spotted as the train passes a shallow lake before continuing to Klerksdorp. Have some time to freshen up and get changed for dinner (dinner on the Rovos Rail is a formal affair - men must wear a jacket, shirt and tie and women must wear an evening dress), then spend another evening enjoying excellent cuisine and wine in the dining car.

    Meals included: Breakfast, lunch, tea and dinner.

  • The final day is an uninterrupted journey, arriving at Pretoria at around midday. Breakfast is served in the dining car as the train travels via Krugersdorp, through the goldfields of the Witwatersrand. The once bustling hub of steam locomotion in the old Transvaal is now the headquarters for Rovos Rail, and features a gracious colonial-style station and railway museum. After disembarking, transfer for around an hour to Johannesburg where you will spend the night. Johannesburg is the largest city in South Africa, home to a range of excellent restaurants as well as some historical and cultural sites including Constitution Hill and the Apartheid Museum.

    Meals included: Breakfast.

  • Explore the ‘City of Gold’ at your own pace or take the optional Inspirational Soweto excursion, a half-day tour which visits the sprawling cluster of townships known as Soweto, south-west of Johannesburg. Created in the 1930s, Soweto is a vibrant and upbeat place where you can visit a number of sites including Kliptown Open Air Museum, Regina Mundi Church, the Hector Pieterson Memorial and Mandela House on Vilakazi Street, where Nelson Mandela lived from 1946 to 1962. Return to your hotel in time for lunch then in the evening, transfer to Johannesburg Airport for your overnight flight to the UK.

    Meals included: Breakfast at the hotel. Meal included on the international flight.

  • Your flight arrives in the UK.

Accommodation

Accommodation in Cape Town

SunSquare Cape Town City Bowl

Included

Standard Hotel: The SunSquare Cape Town City Bowl is a modern hotel in the city centre, with a great view over the city and Table Mountain. There is an enclosed rooftop pool, restaurant, bar and fitness centre. There are a number of good restaurants within walking distance of the hotel, and the waterfront is a 10-minute drive away. All 202 rooms are modern, bright and spacious with views of the city, Table Mountain, Signal Hill, the harbour or Bo Kaap.  

Why stay here? The central location means you can reach all the main sights on foot in around 5-10 minutes. The rooftop bar, pool and outdoor deck area offer spectacular views of Cape Town harbour and Lions Head.

Hotel facilities

  • Free Wi-Fi is available in all areas.

  • There is a restaurant, bar, swimming pool and fitness centre.

  • The hotel offers a concierge service, currency exchange, 24-hour front desk, daily maid and laundry service. 

About the room

All rooms have en-suite bathroom, tea and coffee making facilities, air conditioning, safe, TV, fridge and seating area.

Room type 

Standard Room

V&A Waterfront Hotel

from £320
(£320 Single Supplement)

Superior Hotel: Built in 1904 as the North Quay Warehouse, the V&A Waterfront is one of Cape Town’s finest establishments, boasting a prime location on the fashionable waterfront, within walking distance of the city centre. There are a range of dining options including a fine dining establishment and relaxed restaurant serving artisanal-style dishes on the quayside terrace, as well as a spa and wellness centre, bar and a swimming pool across the road, surrounded by a courtyard. There are 94 well-appointed rooms offering views of the Alfred Basin Table Mountain or the piazza.

Why stay here? This hotel is set apart from other Cape Town hotels due its excellent location, attention to detail and personalised luxury. The bedrooms offer picturesque views of Cape Town Harbour or Table Mountain, and the pool is a great place to relax after exploring the bustling city.

Hotel facilities

  • Free WiFi is available in all areas.

  • There is a restaurant, bar, outdoor swimming pool, spa, garden and terrace.

  • The hotel offers a shuttle service, ATM, currency exchange, concierge service, luggage storage, tour desk, safety deposit box, 24-hour front desk, room service, gift shops and daily maid service.

About the room

All rooms have an en-suite bathroom, tea and coffee making facilities, minibar, safety deposit box, satellite TV, toiletries and air conditioning. Rooms are well-appointed, contemporary and each decorated in a different style, to complement the warm personalised service.

Room type

Loft Room

Accommodation in Johannesburg

The Maslow

Included

Standard Hotel: Situated a ten-minute walk from Nelson Mandela Square in Sandton, one of Johannesburg’s northern suburbs, The Maslow offers comfortable accommodation with excellent facilities. There is an outdoor swimming pool, restaurant, bar, spa and manicured gardens. There are 281 beautifully appointed rooms spread over several floors, with contemporary fixtures and thoughtful touches such as espresso makers and pillow menus.  

Why stay here? The contemporary décor, sleek furnishings and central location make this stylish hotel a great option in Johannesburg. There is a bistro with a range of seafood options and South African wine, and the spa offers eco-friendly products and treatments with a view over the city. The location is excellent, a ten-minute walk from Nelson Mandela Square and Sandton City Mall.  

Hotel facilities

  • Free WiFi is available in all areas.

  • There is a restaurant, outdoor swimming pool, bar, sun terrace and garden.

  • The hotel offers a concierge service, luggage storage, tour desk, 24-hour front desk, daily maid service, shuttle service and laundry service. 

About the room

Overlooking the city, all rooms have en-suite bathroom, toiletries, tea and coffee facilities, minibar, safe, TV, air conditioning and desk.

Room type 

Luxury Room

The Peech

£45
(£45 Single Supplement)

Superior Hotel: Spread across lush gardens in a leafy suburb of Johannesburg, the Peech is one of the city’s most iconic boutique hotels. There are two outdoor swimming pools, a bistro restaurant and champagne bar. Each of the 16 well-appointed rooms are beautifully decorated, featuring rain showers, seating areas, organic toiletries and king-size beds.

Why stay here? This eco-friendly hotel is located in a neighbourhood called Melrose, which is characterised by cafes and cobblestone streets, away from the busy centre. The 1950s house has been refurbished and offers a chic design with modern facilities. The restaurant offers contemporary French dishes with seasonal ingredients, and the intimate cocktail bar has a broad range of Veuve Cliquot.

Hotel facilities

  • Free WiFi is available in all areas.

  • There are two swimming pools, a terrace, garden, bar and restaurant.

  • The hotel offers a concierge service, daily maid service, gift shop, 24-hour front desk and room service.

About the room

Rooms are decorated with rich African tones, with cool mosaic bathrooms. All rooms have en-suite bathroom with organic toiletries and rain shower, seating area, mini bar, tea and coffee facilities, air conditioning and flat-screen TV.

Room type 

Classic Room

Accommodation in Rovos Rail

Rovos Rail

Included

Luxury Sleeper Train: Travelling 1,600 kilometres from Cape Town to Pretoria, the Rovos Rail showcases the diversity of South Africa, from scenic winelands and spectacular mountain ranges to the haunting barrenness of the Great Karoo and the grasslands of the gold-rich Highveld. The train journey includes breakfast, lunch, tea and dinner which are enjoyed in the sophisticated on-board dining cars. The experience is truly grandiose and opulent from start to finish, from the glass of bubbly at the beginning to the pampering throughout the journey.

Why take the train: The Rovos Rail recaptures the atmosphere of a bygone era, with colonial carriages and Edwardian-style furnishing. Rovos Rail is probably the most luxurious train travel in Africa and has a range of suites, public areas and dining cars where meals and tea are served. The train travels throughout the day, stopping during the night to ensure a restful and uninterrupted sleep.

The train can accommodate up to 72 guests at a time in a variety of cabins.

Pullman Suite

Suite size: 7 square metres

Couch, bunk, double and side-by-side twin available

Daytime sofa couches are 189x90cm, lower bunks are 189x90cm, upper bunks are 189x60cm, doubles are 189x150cm and side-by-side twin beds are 189x75cm

Tea drawer, air conditioning, en-suite bathroom with shower, cupboards and safe

Deluxe Suite

Suite size: 10 square metres

Double, side-by-side twin and split twin available

Double beds are 189x160cm and twin beds are 189x90cm

Mini-bar, air conditioning, en-suite bathroom with shower, luggage shelf, cupboards and safe

Royal Suite

Suite size: 16 square metres

Double and twin available

Double beds are 200x189cm and twin beds are 200x75cm

Lounge area, mini-bar, air conditioning, en-suite bathroom with bath and shower, luggage shelf, cupboards and safe

Dining

Breakfast, lunch, tea and dinner are served in the charming Edwardian atmosphere of the dining cars, complemented by a selection of fine South African wines. Fresh local ingredients are used and traditional dishes such as game are served.  A gong announces lunch and dinner. The dress code in the evening is formal – men must wear a jacket, shirt and tie whilst women must wear a cocktail/evening dress.

Other Amenities

The train comprises of a locomotive, generator car, staff car, guest cabins, a non-smoking lounge car, two non-smoking dining cars, kitchen car, smoking lounge and observation car.

Between excursions there is time to admire the scenery from the observation car or have a drink at the bar. The lounge car features large windows, deep sofas, wingback chairs and air conditioning.

Luggage

Each suite has a luggage rack that runs its length providing ample space for storage.

Excursions

Excursions Package

Cape Town Excursion Package Save £51

Take the Iconic Cape Town, Peninsula and Penguins and Robben Island Tour excursions for a discounted price.

from £319

Iconic Cape Town

£90

This half-day tour lets you discover the vibrant cultures and rich history of Cape Town, with visits to Table Mountain and numerous other sites. Explore the market of Greenmarket Square, marvel at the colourful houses and cobbled streets of the Cape Malay Quarter, walk through the Company Gardens, visit Cape Castle and pass through District Six, the Houses of Parliament, Slave Lodge and the City Hall.

Full Description:

Set off in the morning for this half-day tour of Cape Town. The first stop (weather permitting*) is Table Mountain’s Lower Cableway Station, for a 5-minute revolving cable car ride to the top. The cable car’s rotating floor ensures that all passengers have an aerial view of the city. 1,067 metres above sea level, Table Mountain is a sandstone plateau rising up above the Cape Flats. The top is approximately 3km wide, and at its highest point, Maclear’s Beacon, rises to 1,085m.  Over the centuries it has become one of South Africa's most famous landmarks.  The steep cliffs and rocky outcrops of the mountain are home to a variety of flora and fauna including approximately 1,470 species of plants and the Table Mountain ghost frog.

Return to the city via the old Cape Malay Quarter (Bo-Kaap) which is renowned for its multi-coloured buildings. The cluster of Cape Dutch and Cape Georgian houses are on Signal Hill, and the museum provides a moving account of the community and its history as a former slave quarter. From there, go to the Castle of Good Hope for a guided tour of South Africa’s oldest building, with its formidable collection of Old Cape paintings. Built between 1666 and 1679, this pentagonal fortification replaced a small clay and timber fort built by Commander Jan van Riebeeck in 1652. Walk through the Company Gardens, which was originally created in the mid-17th century by the region’s first European settlers, growing fresh produce for ships rounding the Cape. It is now home to the South Africa Museum, Houses of Parliament, National Gallery and St George’s Cathedral. Take in the nearby Grand Parade, where Nelson Mandela addressed the nation on his release in 1990, and then move on to the District Six Museum, which showcases the colourful life of this area and the forced relocation of its residents during the Apartheid era. Stroll through the city to Greenmarket Square, where you can haggle with local vendors for beautiful wares, then arrive back at the hotel around 1pm.

 

*If the cable car doesn’t run due to bad weather, then you are taken to Signal Hill, which also boasts beautiful views.

Peninsula & Penguins

£150

This full-day tour is an excellent way to appreciate the natural beauty that surrounds Cape Town, with highlights including Seal Island, Chapman’s Peak Drive, Cape Point National Park and Boulders Beach. Throughout the day you will drive along a stunning stretch of coastline, stopping for a boat trip to Seal Island which is home to thousands of Cape fur seals. Make your way to Cape Point, the south-westernmost tip of Africa that has captivated travellers for centuries with its fascinating history. After lunch, stop to visit Boulders Beach, renowned for its huge colony of African penguins, then continue back to Cape Town along False Bay coast.

Full Description:

The excursion starts early in order to avoid Cape Town traffic, as you are picked up around 6:30am and driven along the Atlantic seaboard towards Hout Bay. The first stop is a one-hour boat cruise to visit Seal Island, a small land mass located 5.7 km off the northern beaches of False Bay. The island is so named because of the 64,000 Cape Fur Seals that occupy it.

If open (weather dependent), continue on Chapman’s Peak Drive, renowned for being one of the most stunning roads in the world. Winding its way between Noordhoek and Hout Bay, this rocky coastal road offers numerous points where you can pull over and admire a panoramic view across the Atlantic Ocean and the shapely shoreline that meets it. From vantage points, some of which are up to 593m above sea level, it is not uncommon to see whales and dolphins, and troops of baboons curiously observing passing tourists. From here you continue to Cape Point, within Table Mountain National Park, which forms part of the Cape Floral Region, a World Heritage Site. Here, you take the Flying Dutchman Funicular to the old lighthouse.

After a delicious seafood lunch in a restaurant, the return journey takes you along False Bay coast where you travel through the historic naval base of Simon's Town and Boulders Beach, renowned for being home to a colony of up to 3,000 African Penguins. Formerly known as jackass penguins because of their distinctive braying, they are the only penguins found on the continent. Colonies can be found from southern Namibia all the way around the South African coast to Port Elizabeth; however, few places offer as remarkable a viewing point as Boulders Beach. After spending half an hour here to admire and photograph the penguins, transfer back to the hotel in Cape Town, arriving mid-afternoon.

Robben Island Tour

£130

Discover one of South Africa's most revered national monuments on this half-day excursion to Robben Island. This World Heritage Site was a prison for some 450 years – for, at one time or another, convicts, slaves, exiled Eastern princes, lepers, the insane and political prisoners being punished for resisting oppressive rule. Get access to the cell where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for 27 years, and visit other important sites around Murray's Bay Harbour. 

Full Description:

Transfer from your hotel to the harbour for a 30-minute boat trip across Table Bay to Robben Island. Upon arrival you are met by a former prisoner who will be your guide. After a 45-minute bus journey with commentary and moving stories from your guide, stop and visit the infamous Maximum-Security Prison as well as the Murray's Bay Harbour attractions including the Muslim shrine, or kramat, and the Museum Shop.  For some 450 years, Robben Island was a place of banishment, exile, isolation and imprisonment. It was here that rulers sent those they regarded as political troublemakers, social outcasts and the unwanted of society. During the apartheid years, Robben Island became internationally known for its institutional brutality. 

Explore the historic prison where Nelson Mandela was incarcerated, along with countless other convicts. See Mandela's prison cell and explore the island's multi-layered history in a private vehicle with an expert guide. Return by boat to the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront and transfer to your hotel.

Please note that this excursion may be cancelled due to sea conditions.

Inspirational Soweto

£120

Vibrant and upbeat, Soweto is home to anti-apartheid activists, Nobel Prize winners and social protest that rocked the world. It is a sprawling township, or more accurately, a cluster of townships on the south-western flank of Johannesburg. Soweto was created in the 1930s, with Orlando the first township established. On this half-day tour, explore this vibrant and upbeat place with visits to Kliptown Open Air Museum, Regina Mundi Church, the Hector Pieterson Memorial and Mandela House on Vilakazi Street, where Nelson Mandela lived from 1946 to 1962.

Full Description:

This half-day morning tour lasts around 4-5 hours, with visits to Soweto’s most renowned sites. Soweto was at the centre of the political campaign aimed at the overthrow of the apartheid state. The 1976 student uprising started in Soweto and spread to the rest of the country. Many of the sights visited on this excursion have political significance.

You visit the Kliptown Open Air Museum, where delegates met in 1955 to adopt the Freedom Charter. Afterwards, continue to Regina Mundi Church, the largest Roman Catholic Church in South Africa. Visit the Hector Pieterson Museum in Orlando West, built in memory of the Soweto high school students who took to the streets in a peaceful protest on the 16th of June 1976, before being shot by the apartheid police. Time is allowed to visit Mandela House, where you learn about the story of Nelson Mandela and his family, who lived here from 1946 to 1962. See the mansion that belonged to Winnie Madikizela-Mandela in an affluent part of Orlando West. Archbishop Desmond Tutu's house and the Sisulu residences are in the same neighborhood. Return to your hotel in time for lunch.

2020

Holiday Information

All the practical information you need regarding your trip is found here. From how to prepare before you leave and travelling to your destination, to advice on travelling within your country of choice.

About your Holiday

  • Prices listed are per person and based on two persons sharing a room and include all flights from the UK and within destination, service of guides and reps (please note that tips are not included), accommodation and all transfers and excursions listed in the itinerary. Where applicable, entrance fees, taxes and charges are included in our prices at the rates advised to us at the time of preparation. An adjustment will be made to your price if any of these change before your holiday. UK airport taxes are included.

  • All the flight-inclusive holidays on this website are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. When you pay you will be supplied with an ATOL Certificate. Please ask for it and check to ensure that everything you booked (flights, hotels and other services) is listed on it. Please see our booking conditions for further information or for more information about financial protection and the ATOL Certificate go to: www.atol.org.uk/ATOLCertificate

Booking Conditions

    1. Your contract

      Your contract is with Llama Travel Limited, registered in England and Wales, number 4370517. The following conditions will apply to your booking and form part of your contract. They cannot be varied and should be read carefully. A contract will exist when we accept your booking and issue our confirmation invoice. The contract and all matters arising from it shall be governed by English law and be subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the English courts. All correspondence will be sent to the lead passenger of the booking unless otherwise advised. You must be over 18 to book a Llama Travel holiday. Llama Travel holidays are not for resale.

    2. Deposits and final payments

      A deposit of 10% of the holiday cost is required. On some occasions a higher deposit is required, we will advise you if this is necessary. When this is received, we will issue a confirmation invoice. The balance of the payment must be paid 90 days before departure. If the booking is made less than 90 days before departure, full payment must be made when booking. On some occasions, earlier balance payment may be required to secure flight seats or other services. In order to secure your holiday arrangements in some cases, we may ask for a payment in advance before we can reserve the appropriate services. This payment is not refundable if you subsequently decide not to proceed with the booking.

    3. Our prices

      Prices are based on the latest known information at the time of preparation – 5 May 2019 (£1 = US$1.31, £1 = ZAR19 Brent Crude oil $71 per barrel) but can go up or down. Before making a booking, please call us to check the correct up to date price of your chosen holiday.Brochure prices are based on the latest known information at the time of preparation – 5 May 2019 (£1 = US$1.31, £1 = ZAR19 Brent Crude oil $71 per barrel) but can go up or down. Before making a booking, please call us to check the correct up to date price of your chosen holiday.Once you have made a booking and we have issued our confirmation invoice, your holiday price can only be varied due to a significant increase in charges, fees, taxes, or similar items as a result of governmental action. Air passenger duty (APD) for UK departures is £78. For business class, APD rates are higher. The VAT rate for holidays outside the EU is zero. Except for increases in entrance fees or tax increases, such as in APD or VAT, we will not surcharge you.

    4. Alterations or cancellations by you

      If you wish to alter your holiday arrangements before departure, we will do our best to help. An administration fee of £25 per passenger will be charged, together with any additional costs incurred as a result of the change. If you make any alterations within 60 days of departure, we may treat this as a cancellation, and apply cancellation fees. Scheduled airlines treat name changes as a cancellation and rebooking; any alteration is likely to incur a 100% cancellation charge. Please make sure that all names you give us are spelled exactly as they appear in passports. It is not normally possible to make alterations after commencement of travel. If you do wish to make alterations during your holiday, cancellation fees for services booked may apply. Refunds cannot be made for any unused accommodation, services or transport. We recommend that you take out full travel insurance with cover against cancellation penalties, including in the event of force majeure; see section 6 below. We commit to and confirm services in advance. If you wish to cancel your holiday, you must let us know in writing. The following cancellation charges apply.

    5.  Days before departure when you notify usPenalty
      90 days or more Loss of deposit
      61 to 89 days 25% of holiday cost, or deposit if higher
      31 to 59 days 60% of holiday cost (75% for Galapagos holidays), or deposit if higher
      30 days or less 100% of holiday cost

      In some cases, the balance payment may be due earlier than 90 days before departure. We will advise you if this is the case. If any part of the balance payment is required earlier than 90 days before departure, this will normally be non-refundable in the event of cancellation.

      In addition, where one person in a party cancels and others still wish to travel, single room supplements will be payable if this results in single rooms being used.

    6. Alterations or cancellations by us

      We make careful arrangements with airlines, hotels and service operators to ensure that we are able to provide you with the holiday as described. However, in exceptional cases, it may be necessary to make changes to your holiday arrangements (including airlines, flights, accommodation, transport or services) due to circumstances beyond our control. Flight times are given only as indications, and finalised times will be shown on your tickets

      When changes are necessary, we will do our best to ensure that they do not affect your holiday. If, before you depart, a major change is necessary (defined as a change of itinerary so that you are no longer able to visit a destination where you are scheduled to spend one or more nights or an appropriate alternative destination, or a change of accommodation to a lower standard or category affecting a significant part of your holiday) or if we have to cancel your holiday, we will contact you and offer you the choice of:

      • accepting the changes to your holiday;
      • purchasing another available Llama Travel holiday; or
      • cancelling your holiday with a full refund.

      If we have to cancel or make major changes to your holiday less than 60 days before departure, other than in the event of force majeure (see section below), you will also be entitled to compensation at the following levels:

      When notifiedCompensation per person
      43 – 60 days before departure £50
      29 - 42 days before departure £100
      15 - 28 days before departure £150
      0 - 14 days before departure £200
    7. Alterations or cancellations by you or us in the event of force majeure

      If we have to make major changes to, or cancel, your holiday in the event of force majeure, we will contact you and offer you the above choices. However, compensation will not be paid.

      If, in the event of force majeure, we are still able to operate your holiday but you wish to cancel, please contact us to discuss the options. We will endeavour to recover from suppliers, and refund to you, monies paid for your holiday, but where we are unable to do so, you may be able to claim for irrecoverable costs from your travel insurance.

      Force majeure events include war, threat of war, civil unrest or strife, decisions by governments or governing authorities, epidemic, natural disasters, fire, bad weather, terrorist activity, nuclear disaster, industrial disputes, technical or maintenance problems with transport, changes of timetables of airlines, or other causes beyond our control.

    8. Our responsibilities to you

      Llama Travel is dedicated to ensuring that your holiday is as described. If a part of your holiday is not provided as promised, please inform us at the time. If this affects the reasonable enjoyment of your holiday, we will pay compensation appropriate to the circumstances, limited to a maximum of three times the price of the service concerned. If you do not inform us at the time, Llama Travel accepts no responsibility for the situation as we will not have been given the opportunity to rectify the problem.

      Llama Travel accepts responsibility for illness, personal injury or death caused as a direct result of the direct acts and / or omissions of our employees, agents, suppliers or sub-contractors while acting in the course of their employment to provide services or arrangements for your holiday that you have booked with us in the UK. We do not accept responsibility for illness, personal injury or death where there has been no fault of our employees, agents, suppliers or sub-contractors, or as a result of taking part in any activity which does not form part of the holiday booked through us in the UK. Where illness, personal injury or death arises in the course of air travel, rail travel, sea travel or hotel accommodation, the amount of compensation you may receive is limited in accordance with the provisions of any International Convention. If illness, personal injury or death is suffered as a result of taking part in an activity where a third party is involved, we shall, at our discretion, offer advice and assistance to aid in the resolution of the issue, provided you inform us within 90 days of the occurrence. Our costs in respect of the above on behalf of you and your party shall not exceed £5,000 in total. If you are able to make recovery of these costs whether from the third party or from a policy of insurance, you may be asked to refund our outlay.

    9. Your responsibilities

      Clients are responsible for ensuring that all immigration and health requirements are fulfilled, for obtaining travel documents, including passports, visas and vaccination certificates, and for ensuring that these are all in order, including for any intermediate stops on international flights. If the name on your airline ticket does not match that on your passport, you must inform us as soon as you receive the ticket.

      We require your passport details to issue some tickets. If these change after you have given them to us, you must inform us.

      It is your responsibility to behave in a responsible, restrained and sober manner when dealing with local authorities, fellow travellers and our representatives.

      By taking a Llama Travel holiday, you agree to accept the authority and decisions of our employees and representatives. If, in the opinion of such people, your behaviour or health before the departure of a tour is likely to threaten the safety, comfort or progress of that tour, then you may be excluded from the tour without refund or compensation. It is your responsibility to obey local laws, otherwise you may be excluded from the holiday and we will cease to have any responsibility for you.

      Please bear in mind that travel in Latin America and Africa is not the same as travel in the UK, and inconveniences and delays may arise due to weather conditions, strikes, demonstrations, the poor state of roads or for other reasons. By travelling with Llama Travel, you are implicitly accepting this part of the way of life in these countries.

    10. Flights

      We have no control over international or national air carriers, and therefore schedules may change or flights be delayed due to no fault of our own. We will try to ensure the smooth flow of all your transport connections, but it is your responsibility to check exact times of flights and reconfirm these. This is particularly important for internal flights, which can be rearranged at short notice. Llama Travel accepts no responsibility for the consequences of flights missed due to the client’s failure to reconfirm exact details.

      When you travel with an airline, the Conditions of Carriage of that airline apply, some of which will limit or exclude liability. These conditions are the subject of International Agreements between countries.

      Flying to Latin America and Africa involves long flights and may require changes in other airports. It is your responsibility to arrive at the departure airport at the appropriate time and to check in for your international flight, and to change aeroplanes if necessary at intermediate airports. If you wish to sit in a specific seat, or wish to sit with other people on the flight, it is recommended that you check in early or check in online where possible. It is sometimes possible to reserve seats directly with the airline online prior to travel.

      Airlines do not allow more than one booking per passenger on a flight and may cancel seats if they are held by more than one operator. Clients are responsible for ensuring they are not holding flights with another operator.

    11. Baggage allowance

      Most airlines have a baggage allowance of 20kg per passenger. Carrying excess baggage will normally incur an expensive additional cost payable at check in. Additionally, certain excursions have a limited baggage allowance. Where this is the case, you will usually be able to leave the rest of you luggage in storage. Llama Travel accepts no responsibility for the delay, loss or damage of luggage.

    12. Insurance

      You must have adequate insurance provision to cover the cost of assistance, including emergency repatriation, in the event of illness or other problems occurring during your holiday.

    13. Complaints

      If you have any complaints about your holiday arrangements when you are abroad, please bring these to the attention of our local representatives who will do all they can to ensure a swift and satisfactory resolution. Problems can usually be sorted out by talking to the supplier concerned (e.g. hotel) and our local representatives or by informing us directly. If this is not done, Llama Travel accepts no responsibility for the situation, as we will not have been given the opportunity to rectify the problem. If you do not inform us, your consumer rights to compensation may be affected. If you have tried and failed to rectify the situation whilst abroad, please send us your complaint in writing within 28 days of returning to the UK. We will then follow up your complaint. Communication with destinations is often slow, so we may not be able to resolve the situation as quickly as you would like.

    14. Financial protection for bookings made in UK for UK residents

      The holidays on this website are ATOL protected, since we hold an Air Travel Organiser’s Licence granted by the Civil Aviation Authority, number ATOL 5804.

      If we, or the suppliers identified on your ATOL certificate, are unable to provide the services listed (or a suitable alternative, through an alternative ATOL holder or otherwise) for reasons of insolvency, the Trustees of the Air Travel Trust may make a payment to (or confer a benefit on) you under the ATOL scheme. You agree that in return for such a payment or benefit you assign absolutely to those Trustees any claims which you have or may have arising out of or relating to the non-provision of the services, including any claim against us, the travel agent (or your credit card issuer where applicable).You also agree that any such claims may be re-assigned to another body, if that other body has paid sums you have claimed under the ATOL scheme.

    15. Brochure and website information

      The information in our brochures and on our website is, to the best of our knowledge, correct at the time of going to press. However, details of flights or hotels may vary during the lifetime of a brochure. These changes will be reflected on our website where possible.

      The copyright on all material in our brochures and on our website, including text, photographs, maps and layouts is held by Llama Travel Limited. No part of these publications may be reproduced, stored or transmitted in any way without the prior written permission of Llama Travel.

    16. Data Protection

      The information we ask you to provide, including personal information about you and members of your party, is necessary for us to arrange and operate your holiday. By booking a holiday with us, you agree to our processing this information, including, where appropriate, its transfer outside of the EU.

    17. Package Travel Regulations
      Llama Travel Bookings comply with the UK Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements Regulations 2018. UK Package Travel Regulations

How to Book

  • To book a holiday or discuss your requirements, please call us on 020 7263 3000. We can usually confirm availability immediately, but may need to check with a supplier first.

  • You can pay your deposit by bank transfer, cheque, standard UK debit card or non-premium UK personal Visa / MasterCard credit card. Balance payments can be made by bank transfer or cheque. We do not accept cards for balance payments. We are unable to accept cash.

Before you Go

  • British nationals can enter South Africa for a visit of up to 90 days without a visa. For British passports endorsed in any way and all other passports, please ask the appropriate consulate: South Africa (020 7451 7299). You need a passport with two blank pages, valid for 6 months after your return to the UK.

    If children are not travelling with both parents, a letter of consent is required to enter or depart. Children under 18 must also carry an unabridged birth certificate.

    To issue some tickets, we require passport details and ages when you book. If you subsequently change your passport, please let us know as soon as possible.

  • Adequate travel insurance is essential. We do not sell or recommend any specific policy, but good medical insurance should cover medical evacuation and repatriation. If you are going to be taking part in any activity, please ensure your policy covers you for this.

  • You will receive tickets approximately 10 days before departure, along with information on accommodation, transfers and excursions. Our agents will give you your hotel and excursion vouchers when you arrive. Please check airline tickets carefully in case timings have changed after we issued your confirmation.

  • South Africa has strict regulations regarding the entry and exit of children under 18 when not travelling with both parents, or if the child has nationality of the country you are visiting. If you are travelling with children who are not entering or leaving the country with both parents, or if the child has nationality of the country you are visiting, please contact the consulate (South Africa: 020 7451 7299) to check requirements. Children under 18 must also carry an unabridged birth certificate.

  • Many airlines now charge a fee to select your seat prior to checking in for your flight, even when travelling in premium economy or business class. Alternatively, you may choose your preferred seat free of charge when online check-in opens 24 hours prior to departure or at the airport. Please ask us about the options available at time of booking.

    We all want a comfortable journey, particularly on long haul flights. If you would like a seat with some extra leg room or a larger recline please let us know. Airlines have introduced a range of “economy comfort” seats that may be purchased in advance. In some cases, these seats may only be purchased online directly with the airline once Llama Travel has issued your ticket approximately 30 days prior to departure.

    For flights within Africa, and for connecting flights in Europe, it is usually only possible to select seats when you check-in online or at the airport.

    It may not be possible to always use online check-in systems, especially when using a codeshare flight. On occasion, your preferred seat may be changed by the airline for operational reasons such as a change of aircraft or to facilitate a disabled passenger on the day you fly and as such, Llama Travel cannot always guarantee specific seats.

  • South Africa is a relatively dry country with sunny days and cooler nights, although it does experience a diversity of changes in climate. Most of the country experiences summer rainfall (December to February), except for the Western Cape, which has rainfall during the winter months (June to August).

    During the day it is generally hot, so you should pack lightweight loose-fitting clothes in natural fabrics, such as linen or cotton. Long sleeved shirts and long trousers will protect you against mosquitoes at night. In the winter it gets chilly, so you should pack a warm jacket for morning game drives.

    Electrical sockets in South Africa are 230 Volts. Sockets fit plugs with three round pins.

    We recommend you carry a copy of your passport with you at all times.

    Please bring any medication you may require from the UK.

    If you are flying via Johannesburg, there are strict regulations regarding luggage. Bags must have at least one flat surface, so round/irregular-shaped bags, or bags with long straps will not be accepted.

Health & Fitness

  • For most of our holidays, age is not a concern. However, a reasonable level of fitness is required, as most holidays require some walking, sometimes on uneven ground.

  • Please consult your GP or a travel clinic about health and vaccination requirements. The NHS website www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk gives good advice about travelling in South Africa.

    Malaria precautions are highly recommended when visiting the Kruger National Park, and also if you extend your holiday to visit Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe. Travellers coming from a yellow fever zone must have a valid yellow fever vaccination certificate.

    When visiting Africa, stomach illnesses are not uncommon due to changes in diet. In South Africa all tap water is potable, however we suggest you only drink bottled water and avoid ice. If you are unsure if salads and fruits have been washed in purified water, it is best to avoid them.

    If you have any health problems on holiday, please speak to our local agents or hotel staff. They will arrange for a doctor or hospital if necessary. If you do experience any problems, please seek appropriate medical attention.

Getting there

  • A holiday in Africa inevitably means long haul flights, and at least one overnight sector. Air fares vary from date to date and between airlines. Our holidays are scheduled to use the most advantageous air fare.

    You can choose which airline you prefer, we will let you know if a supplement is payable. Levels of onboard service and facilities, such as entertainment, vary by airline and route. Please ask us for details.

  • Most airlines offer the option of flying from regional airports in the UK, avoiding the need to make your own way to London. Due to the timing of flights, in some cases this may involve an overnight stop in London or another intermediate airport. There is usually a supplement for regional departures. Please note that most of our flights depart from London.

  • You can upgrade to business class or premium economy on most airlines. Prices start from £199 each way for Premium Economy and £699 each way for Business Class. Call us for prices for the route and airline you are interested in.

    Premium Economy
    British Airways World Traveller Plus, Air France Premium Voyageur and Virgin Premium Economy seats are available. These provide more comfortable seats which recline further and have more legroom. There are better meals and a bar service.

    KLM, Iberia and United offer standard economy class seats with extra legroom for additional cost. KLM seats can be booked through Llama Travel. United and Iberia seats can be reserved with the airlines one month prior to departure.

    Business Class

    British Airways Club World has seats which convert into full flat beds and have a privacy screen.

    Iberia Business Plus between Madrid and Latin America offers seats which convert into flat beds. Between the UK and Madrid, seats are usually the same as in economy class.

    KLM World Business Class offers seats that convert into flat beds. Between the UK and Amsterdam, seats are usually the same as in economy class. Air France Affairs Class offer seats which convert into virtually flat beds. Between the UK and Paris, seats are usually the same as in economy class.

    United Business First between the UK and the US offers seats which convert into full flat beds. Between the US and Latin America, seats are more spacious than in economy.

  • Most scheduled airlines have a baggage allowance of 23kg per passenger for international flights, but internal flight allowances can be less. Exact limits can be found on airline webpages. Please bear this in mind when packing, as carrying excess baggage will normally incur an expensive additional cost payable at check in. Additionally, certain excursions have a limited baggage allowance. Where this is the case, you will usually be able to leave the rest of your luggage in storage. Llama Travel accepts no responsibility for the delay, loss or damage of luggage.

Travelling in South Africa

  • The currency in South Africa is the Rand (approximate exchange rate: 18R = 1GBP). Credit and debit cards can be used in many shops and restaurants, and can also be used to withdraw money from cash machines.

    It is always recommended to inform your bank that you are travelling abroad and to which countries. This will allow them to authorise money withdrawals from your account when you are away. Some banks say that this is not necessary, however we would still recommend contact with your bank as in some cases people have had difficulty in withdrawing currency.

  • Most people who travel to the countries where Llama Travel operates experience no problems on holiday. However, as is the case anywhere in the world, crime can be a problem, especially in large cities. Tourists can appear attractive targets to criminals. To minimise the risk, use common sense. Do not display signs of wealth, such as expensive looking jewellery or cameras. Avoid empty streets, especially on your own. Take a taxi after dark. By taking sensible precautions, you should have a trouble-free holiday.

    Each country has its own standards for health and safety, but these are often not as good as in the UK. We take this into account when selecting hotels and request that they comply with all local regulations, but cannot guarantee that these are equivalent to British standards. Please take reasonable precautions to protect yourselves whilst on holiday, e.g. by locating fire exit routes.

    Please also check the Foreign Office travel advice for the countries you are visiting at www.fco.gov.uk. 

  • In many destinations, you can arrange adventure activities. If you are interested in taking any of these, please make sure you are covered by your travel insurance. Llama Travel does not arrange any adventure activities directly and we cannot verify the safety measures of any local operators.

  • Excursions are operated together with other travellers. These will usually be in English, although groups are sometimes a mix of English and other languages. A minimum of 2 people is required for some excursions. On some occasions, the order of excursions may vary. Many excursions are with non-Llama Travel passengers, especially on wildlife excursions.

  • Tipping in South Africa is standard practice. Wages are low so many people depend on tips to make up the shortfall in their earnings. Restaurant staff are used to receiving 10-15% of the total bill. In cities, you can tip your cab driver by rounding up to the nearest ten (although use your discretion regarding distance, time of day etc), and the norm for hotel porters is around R15-20. Whilst on safari, it is recommended to tip guides and drivers R200 per person per day and general lodge staff R120 shared between them per day.

  • To phone the UK from South Africa, dial the international dialing code for the UK (0044) and then the UK telephone number, leaving out the ‘0’ in the area code. Telephone cards are the easiest way to use public telephones, and can be bought in convenience stores.

    To phone South Africa from the UK, dial the international dialing code for South Africa (0027) and then the South Africa telephone number, leaving out the ‘0’ in the area code. Most UK mobile phones work in South Africa, but international roaming may need to be activated. Check with your mobile phone service provider if your telephone will work.

  • Probably the best way to describe our holidays is flexible tours, so you can choose where to visit by combining different extensions and excursions, and which hotels to stay in. In most cases, you will be with other Llama Travellers, but not necessarily the same people throughout. This allows you to get to know like-minded people, but not have to spend all your time with the same group. If we don't have anyone else taking a particular part of a holiday, we will still operate this just for you. All our holidays are guaranteed to operate if we have two passengers or more.

    Excursions are usually taken together with other Llama Travel customers in groups of no more than 18 people. If we have more than 18 booked, we operate two groups. In some places, the excursions are operated by one of our local partners, so you may be with people other than Llama Travel customers and the group may be a mix of English and other languages. In these cases, group sizes can sometimes be larger. If you would like to know the likely situation for your holiday, please ask us and we will be able to check. Transfers may be with more than 18 people.

    We get a wide range of people taking our holidays, with probably the largest group being couples aged in their forties to sixties, or even older. However, we also have a large number of customers in their twenties and thirties, especially for some of the more active holidays. What unites everyone is a sense of curiosity and a desire to discover new cultures, landscapes and wildlife. Although most of our customers travel with friends or family, we also have quite a few single travellers who are happy to mix and match as described above.

  • All hotels include breakfast, and other meals are included on some tours and excursions. However, generally, you will need to arrange your own lunches and dinners. We recommend budgeting approximately £15-20 for a three-course meal, £10 for a good bottle of wine, £2 for a beer or soft drink and £1 for a big bottle of water. There are many upmarket restaurants, particularly in the Winelands, where you should expect to pay up to £50 per person, or possibly more. As a wine-producing country, South Africa’s wine is particularly good value and you may want to purchase a few good bottles for your return.

    Throughout South Africa there are opportunities to shop for souvenirs and we advise setting aside some of your budget for this purpose. Credit cards are accepted in most places although Amex has more limited use.