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DDuration: Five days
Itinerary: Fly into KwaZulu-Natal’s largest city, Durban. There’s so much to see in this spectacular multicultural province, flanked by the Indian Ocean and towering peaks, with dry savannahs, rural tribal settlements and traditional Zululand. Take a guided tour to the beautiful Valley of a Thousand Hills to experience Zulu culture including wonderful dancing and music. KwaZulu-Natal is rich in military heritage related to the bloody Anglo-Zulu war. Explore the battlefields; Isandlwana and Rorke’s Drift are two of the most famous sites, where the Zulus, who were armed with just spears and shields, defeated the British Army. Another fascinating place to visit is the Nelson Mandela Capture Site, where Nelson Mandela was apprehended for his anti-Apartheid activism in August 1952. It’s marked by a sculpture — comprised of 50 steel columns laser-cut to form an image of the former president when viewed at the correct angle — at the end of a winding path, representing his long walk to freedom and political equality.
DDuration: Five days
Province: Western Cape
Itinerary: Wander the streets of Bo-Kaap with a guide, to learn how South Africa’s many multicultural roots have influenced its culture, religion and cuisine. This 17th-century neighbourhood is characterised by its technicolour Cape Dutch and Georgian houses, which were built and leased to Cape Malay slaves, brought from Malaysia, Indonesia and the rest of Africa to work in the Cape. While the houses were on lease, they all had to be white; when the slaves could buy the properties, the owners painted them in bright colours as an expression of freedom. Gain a greater understanding of South Africa’s apartheid past on a tour of Robben Island. This UNESCO World Heritage Site has been a leper colony and a military base, but most famously was where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for 18 of his 27 years behind bars. Ferries depart from the V&A Waterfront and tours last around three-and-a-half hours, usually ending with a visit to Mandela’s cell. All tour guides on the island were once political prisoners. To find out more about modern Cape Town culture, take a tour with Juma Mkwela in Woodstock, just outside Cape Town. From art experiences to cycling tours through Khayelitsha, the largest township in Cape Town, this is a chance to experience the friendly atmosphere and vibrant culture of parts of the city known for their entrepreneurial spirit and social development projects.
DDuration: Two days
Itinerary: Understanding South Africa’s complex history is important for appreciating the sense of hope and optimism of the people today. The Apartheid Museum, in Johannesburg, provides an intensive and accessible account of the development, implementation and eventual dismantling of apartheid. The Cradle of Humankind, about 30 miles northwest of Johannesburg, is a network of limestone caves containing the fossilised remains of ancient plant, animal and proto-human life. This place really is heaven for paleoanthropological enthusiasts. Tour the incredible Sterkfontein Caves, where the 2.3-million-year-old hominid skull of ‘Mrs Ples’ was discovered.
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