MERVIS DIAMOND SAFARI - South Africa 10 Days GROUP C: DEPARTURE FEBRUARY 15 - 24, 2019

 
MERVIS DIAMOND SAFARI - South Africa 10 Days GROUP C: DEPARTURE FEBRUARY 15 - 24, 2019
MERVIS DIAMOND SAFARI

GROUP C: DEPARTURE FEBRUARY 15 - 24, 2019

              South Africa 10 Days
       Cape Town, Pilanesberg National Park

               Presented by: Ronnie Mervis

     Traveling with Steve Czaban & Brian Mitchell, Team 980

                                                              dhV C 7: 10.22.2018
MERVIS DIAMOND SAFARI - South Africa 10 Days GROUP C: DEPARTURE FEBRUARY 15 - 24, 2019
ITINERARY HIGHLIGHTS

   4 Nights at Cape Town’s SOUTHERN SUN WATERFRONT – With breathtaking
    views of Table Mountain, located at the waterfront, this modern, chic, and
    spaciously comfortable hotel offers everything you would expect from a full service
    hotel.

   3 Nights at IVORY TREE LODGE – located in the Pilanesberg National Park and
    situated in the crater of an ancient and long-extinct volcano, the exclusive Ivory
    Tree Game Lodge is surrounded by typical African bushveld.

   7 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches, and 3 Dinners

   Airport transfers with private vehicle and driver, including a private ‘Meet and Greet’
    service on arrival into South Africa.

   Early morning cable car ride to the top of Table Mountain, for glorious views of the
    city, ocean and countryside.

   Half day excursion to infamous Robben island – the historic prison of Nelson
    Mandela. Round trip ferry and escorted island tour included.

   Full day scheduled excursion to Cape Point including a visit to the Boulders Beach
    penguins and a seafood luncheon.

   Full day scheduled tour to the winelands, including wine tasting and lunch.

   Morning and late afternoon/early evening Game drives in specially designed 4x4
    safari vehicles in Pilanesburg National Park.

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MERVIS DIAMOND SAFARI - South Africa 10 Days GROUP C: DEPARTURE FEBRUARY 15 - 24, 2019
ITINERARY Group C

 Fri Feb 15
 WASHINGTON D.C.  JOHANNESBURG

Your exciting adventure begins today, as you board your flight bound for South Africa.
Award winning South African Airways – recipient of the Best Airline in Africa trophy for 17
consecutive years – will fly our group in comfort and style. Aboard an Airbus A330-200.

 Sat Feb 16
 JOHANNESBURG  CAPE TOWN

Touchdown in Johannesburg and, after completing Customs, continue with your flight to
Cape Town – the ‘Mother City’. You will be met by our Great Safaris representative and
transferred to your reserved hotel.

The Mother City has a peculiar habit - once a day, Capetonians check their watches. Now,
this in itself is not very unusual. The strangeness comes into the fact that everyone looks
at their watches at exactly the same time without consciously thinking about it. At exactly
12:00 pm every day, a loud bang fired from cannon on Signal Hill announces to the city
that midday has arrived.

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MERVIS DIAMOND SAFARI - South Africa 10 Days GROUP C: DEPARTURE FEBRUARY 15 - 24, 2019
The Cape was established by the Dutch East India Company (VOC) as a halfway house
along the trade route between the East and Europe. This became a place to mend ships,
rest and heal weary visitors and most importantly to collect fresh produce grown by
farmers in the area in order to feed famished sailors and soldiers before heading off again
for the second leg of their arduous sea voyage.

Cape Town grew quickly and soon earned the reputation as the ‘Tavern of the Seas’.
Today Cape Town is still a thriving port and never ceases to enthrall visitors with its unique
beauty, ethnic diversity and energetic vibe.

With its iconic Table Mountain backdrop, Cape Town is considered one of the most
beautiful cities in the world. An eclectic mix of architectural styles reflects both the area’s
history and the more pragmatic realities of the 21st century. The city’s Edwardian and
Victorian buildings have been carefully preserved, and many excellent examples of Cape
Dutch architecture are found in the city and its environs.

The ability to make something that is both functional and beautiful has long been a proud
aspect of the African culture. Cape Town boasts some of the most original and creative
handmade arts & crafts and can be found at markets and shops all over Cape Town. You'll
find something that caters for any taste or style at the V&A Waterfront or at one of the
many shops that open their doors in the surrounding Cape Town area.

Being a coastal town, the ocean plays an important part in everyday lives, beyond the
calming effect for which it's famous. There is an incredible diversity of marine life to be
discovered and many fun filled activities can be planned to make use of the bountiful
Atlantic and Indian Oceans surrounding Cape Town.
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MERVIS DIAMOND SAFARI - South Africa 10 Days GROUP C: DEPARTURE FEBRUARY 15 - 24, 2019
ACCOMMODATIONS: SOUTHERN SUN WATERFRONT
Wonderful sunsets over the Atlantic Ocean assist in making the Southern Sun Waterfront
Cape Town a preferred business and holiday destination. A mere 15 minutes’ drive from
Cape Town International Airport, a 5 minute walk from the Cape Town International
Convention Centre (CTICC) and within walking distance to the V&A Waterfront, this hotel
is superbly located to offer every guest easy access to the sights and sounds of Cape
Town.

Breathtaking views of Table Mountain can be enjoyed from rooms that offer all the quality
and comfort you would expect from a full service hotel. Offering guests a fitness center, a
pool and convenient meeting rooms and a business center, the Southern Sun Waterfront
Cape Town caters for all possible business or leisure traveler needs.

Modern, chic and spaciously comfortable, the Waterfront hotel rooms offer guests a
rejuvenating, fully serviced escape from the bustling energy of Cape Town. The décor is
tasteful and classy with an edge. Amenities cater for all possible requirements and include
24 hour in room dining and a host of channels available on satellite. Each guest room
offers wireless internet access and the workstation with work lamp.

Unique cuisine and relaxed dining are just two of the many aspects that make for a simply
superb dining experience to all restaurant guests. The newly renovated Yizani Restaurant
is inspired by everything local and is authentically South African. Yizani translates as
“Come in... Welcome” in Xhosa, and is perfectly appropriate in that this restaurant offers
a world-class welcome that sets the scene for the experience to follow.
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MERVIS DIAMOND SAFARI - South Africa 10 Days GROUP C: DEPARTURE FEBRUARY 15 - 24, 2019
Sun Feb 17
 CAPE TOWN (TABLE MOUNTAIN & ROBBEN ISLAND)

Awake this morning to a delicious breakfast at your hotel and then your private touring
vehicle will collect you from the hotel to visit Table Mountain. It is best to ascend the
mountain in the early morning before the clouds have settled onto the mountain top.

Later today we will transfer to Robben Island Ferry dock and depart on a scheduled boat
trip across Table Bay to Robben Island. On arrival guests will be met by their guide – an
ex-political prisoner and then taken on a bus ride with the guide providing commentary.
Stop and visit the infamous Maximum Security Prison as well as the Murray's Bay Harbor
precinct attractions, such as the Muslim shrine, or kramat, and the Museum Shop.

For nearly 400 years, Robben Island, 12 kilometers from Cape Town, 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. The duty of those who ran the Island and its prison was to isolate opponents of
apartheid and to crush their morale. Some freedom fighters spent more than a quarter of
a century in prison for their beliefs.

This famous island has captured hearts and minds around the globe. Situated just a few
kilometers from the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront, it was “home” to Nelson Mandela for
some 17 years. Today it has become a symbol of freedom, the transformative power of
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MERVIS DIAMOND SAFARI - South Africa 10 Days GROUP C: DEPARTURE FEBRUARY 15 - 24, 2019
forgiveness and a place of political pilgrimage. The tour includes a 7-mile boat trip, which
takes about half an hour each way and the tour lasts about three hours.

ACCOMMODATIONS: SOUTHERN SUN WATERFRONT (Breakfast)

 Mon Feb 18
 CAPE TOWN (CAPE POINT)

Depart this morning on a full day tour of the Cape Peninsula, which will feature a midday
break to enjoy a fresh seafood luncheon. First you will travel via the 12 Apostles and Hout
Bay, to Chapman’s Peak. This is one of the region’s most dramatic mountain drives and
offers amazing panoramic views over the city and environs. Descend the mountain pass
and continue on to the coastline.

This strip of the peninsula’s shoreline, commonly known as the Atlantic Seaboard,
stretches some 34 miles from the waters of Table Bay along the western coast to the
nature reserve at Cape Point. The exceptional beaches and rugged mountains along this
coastline not only make this a popular drive, but also provide outstanding views across
the Atlantic Ocean, with some of the most spectacular sunsets in the world.

The Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve comes to an end at majestic Cape Point.
Situated at the junction of two of earth’s most contrasting water masses – the cold
Benguela current on the West Coast and the warm Agulhas current on the East Coast,
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MERVIS DIAMOND SAFARI - South Africa 10 Days GROUP C: DEPARTURE FEBRUARY 15 - 24, 2019
the Cape of Good Hope is popularly perceived as the meeting point of the Atlantic and
the Indian Oceans. Guests may take (optional, cost not included) the funicular to the
vantage point from where they will be able to witness the “meeting of the two oceans”.

Today’s attractions include Boulders beach, which is home to a colony of endangered
jackass penguins in Simonstown. Technically, these are African penguins… but early
settlers thought that their braying sound was more like a four-footed pack animal than a 2
footed bird!

You will also have the (optional, cost not included) opportunity to visit the colony of seals
on the aptly named Seal Island, before returning to your hotel in the late afternoon. We
would be happy to recommend some fabulous restaurants… Cape Town, after all, is the
‘foodie’ capital of South Africa!

ACCOMMODATIONS: SOUTHERN SUN WATERFRONT (Breakfast, Lunch)

 Tue Feb 19
 CAPE TOWN (WINELANDS)

Another day of unforgettable scenery begins as we depart on our full day tour to the
winelands. Enjoy a spectacular drive through beautiful mountain scenery to the Cape's
World Famous Wine Estates. You will stop at a popular winery where our group can
sample some of the esteemed vintages and enjoy a cellar tour.

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MERVIS DIAMOND SAFARI - South Africa 10 Days GROUP C: DEPARTURE FEBRUARY 15 - 24, 2019
Franschhoek is our next stop – a gorgeous village surrounded by majestic mountains and
often called the ‘gourmet center’ of South Africa. Some of the country’s finest restaurants
are located in Franschhoek, before continuing to Paarl. This ‘pearl of the Cape’ lies
nestled in the Berg river Valley, guarded by the huge granite rocks from which it gets its
name. Paarl is also well known for its wine, cuisine and culture, and it also considered
the home of the Afrikaans language.

We then continue to the lovely town of Stellenbosch, with its tree lined streets and
historical architecture. The Stellenbosch University is the oldest college in South Africa!
There will be time to explore Stellenbosch on foot – exploring the shops on popular Dorp
Street and perhaps stopping for coffee in a quaint sidewalk café.

We will enjoy lunch today at a winery and then we return to our hotel for an evening at
leisure.

ACCOMMODATIONS: SOUTHERN SUN WATERFRONT (Breakfast, Lunch)

 Wed Feb 20
 CAPE TOWN  JOHANNESBURG

This morning, after breakfast, transfer to Cape Town International Airport for a scheduled
flight from Cape Town to Johannesburg. You will be met on arrival by a Great Safaris
representative who will escort you to the waiting transfer vehicle for the drive to
Pilanesberg National Park, situated in the North West Province.

You will arrive into camp in time for lunch and then will have some time to relax or game
watch from the comfort of your terrace. Later in the afternoon guests will gather for
afternoon tea and refreshments before setting out on an exciting game drive. The wildlife
adventure continues into the darkness, when you return to camp for a hearty dinner.

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MERVIS DIAMOND SAFARI - South Africa 10 Days GROUP C: DEPARTURE FEBRUARY 15 - 24, 2019
ACCOMMODATIONS: IVORY TREE GAME LODGE
Situated in the crater of an ancient and long-extinct volcano within the Pilanesberg
National Park, the exclusive Ivory Tree Game Lodge is surrounded by typical African
bushveld; rolling grasslands and lightly wooded areas, with fabulous views of the koppies.

This escape from city living is only two hours’ drive from Johannesburg and falls within a
malaria-free zone. Each suite is tastefully decorated with a range of amenities for guests’
comfort and enjoyment. Décor is typical African in flavor, with warm and cool tones. Each
of the suites at Ivory features a comfortable outdoor sitting area making for a relaxing
setting. The room has an ensuite bathroom and for those that are adventurous can enjoy
a shower under the African Sun. The room can accommodate two adults in 2 single beds
or a king size bed configuration. The central facility includes a stunning feature pool, bar,
conference rooms, dining room, bomas, reception and curio shop. (Breakfast, Lunch,
Dinner)

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Thu and Fri Feb 21 & Feb 22
 PILANESBERG NATIONAL PARK

You will have a total of 3 nights in Pilanesberg, with morning and late afternoon game
drives every day.
The Pilanesberg National Park is 212 square miles in extent. It is almost perfectly circular
because it comprises the area of a 1200 million years old volcano crater with a small lake
in the centre. This very scenic terrain lies in the transition zone between Kalahari and
Lowveld, and both types of vegetation are found here. The Pilanesberg National Park was
opened in 1979. In the Pilanesberg National Park today live virtually all the animal species
of southern Africa, including, lions, elephants, white and black rhinos, buffaloes, leopards,
zebras, hyenas, giraffes, hippos and crocodiles. Over 300 bird species counted.

The crater of a long extinct volcano is the setting of Pilanesberg Game Reserve – a
fascinating alkaline complex produced by volcanic eruptions some 1300 million years
ago. Pilanesberg Game Reserve is one of the largest volcanic complexes of its kind in the
world. Its rare rock types and structure make it a unique geological feature.

Pilanesberg rates high amongst the world’s outstanding geological phenomena. It has
survived ages of erosion and stands high above the surrounding bushveld plains. The
early presence of man can be seen in the numerous Stone and Iron Age sites that are
scattered throughout the park. The park exists within the transition zone between the dry
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Kalahari and wetter Lowveld vegetation, commonly referred to as “Bushveld”. Unlike any
other large park, unique overlaps of mammals, birds and vegetation occur because of this
transition zone.

ACCOMMODATIONS: IVORY TREE GAME LODGE (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

 Sat Feb 23
 PILANESBERG NATIONAL PARK JOHANNESBURG

One last early morning in the bushveld for any final wildlife sightings.

Return to camp for breakfast and then depart on the journey back to Johannesburg,
Enroute back to Johannesburg the group will stop at the Chameleon Village craft market
where they can do some craft shopping.

Chameleon Village has the most distinctive and comprehensive African market in Africa-
featuring curios, antiques and artefacts from all corners of the African continent. Products
are available for the serious collector and casual shopper- and of course the highest
standards are maintained. A visit to the Market is a most pleasant and vibrant experience.
Be sure to do the traditional bargaining with the many enthusiastic vendors!

The journey concludes with the arrival at Johannesburg’s OR Tambo international airport
for our South African Airways flight bound for the USA. (Breakfast)
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Sun Feb 24
  ARRIVE WASHINGTON D.C.

               Arrive home early today…with memories and photos to last a lifetime!

                                                     IMPORTANT NOTES:

  South Africa: An entry permit will be issued to you upon arrival into South Africa.

  South Africa requires two blank visas pages in your passport. We recommend one blank visa page for
  each other country visited. Your passport must be valid for at least six months beyond intended period of
  stay.
  There are no required inoculations on this itinerary. However, malaria tablets are highly recommended.
  You may obtain these pills by prescription, from your regular physician.

                      Mervis / ESPN Safari – South Africa February 15 – 24, 2019

*Prices are per person based on double occupancy. Valid as of October 18, 2018 for departures from Washington Dulles (IAD) on
February 15, 2019 only with the same itinerary; available at higher prices during other travel periods. Other departure points and
domestic flights within the U.S. can be booked at additional cost pending availability. Subject to availability and currency exchange
rate fluctuations. Prices are valid for new bookings only, are not retroactive and may change without notice. Package includes all
current government and airline-imposed taxes and fees. Baggage and optional service fees, cancellation charges and other
restrictions may apply.

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