Depart San Francisco at 7:55 PM on Swiss Air Lines flight #39 bound for Zurich, Switzerland.
Select meals, snacks, and refreshments will be served on board the flight.
Be sure to read the great tips and travel information in your Music Contact International handbook!
Wednesday, May 23, 2018
Arrive at Zurich airport at 3:50 PM and transfer to your connecting flight.
Depart Zurich at 10:40 PM on Swiss flight #288 bound for Johannesburg, South Africa.
Thursday, May 24, 2018
Arrive in Johannesburg at 9:10 AM. Your Music Contact International tour manager will greet you at the airport. (Independent travelers must meet the group at the airport).
Together, board your private motor coach and transfer to Pilanesberg National Park and Game Reserve in North West Province (travel time is approximately 3hrs). Pilanesberg National Park was formed by volcanic eruptions and its primary geological feature is the Pilanesberg Alkaline Ring Complex. Enclosed by three concentric rings of hills that rise from the surrounding plains like a bubble, Pilanesberg is one of the largest volcanic alkaline complexes in the world.
Check-in and refresh at the Bakabung Bush Lodge where a special welcome dinner of local specialties will be served to your group.
Friday, May 25, 2018
Wake up early to embark on a pre-breakfast game drive through the Pilanesberg Game Reserve in open safari vehicles with expert game rangers. The early morning is the best time to spot an abundance of game and observe a spectacular array of flora and fauna. Keep your eyes open to spot Africa’s “Big Five” animals: the African lion, African elephant, African leopard, cape buffalo, and white/black rhinoceros.
After the game drive, return to the lodge to have breakfast and free time relaxing in the lodge’s swimming pool or spa.
In the evening, depart on a safari to see more wild life including nocturnal animals such as the hyena, cheetah and majestic sable. Return to the lodge for dinner and a peaceful night’s rest.
Saturday, May 26, 2018
This morning, enjoy a tasty breakfast at your lodge before checking out of your rooms.
Depart for Johannesburg and make a stop at Lesedi Cultural Village. Visit this living museum dedicated to the various African tribes, cultures, and history. See a traditional African dance and drumming show. A lunch buffet will be served.
Afterwards, depart for Maropeng where you will visit the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site and Sterkfontein Caves. This paleoanthropological site is recognized as the place from which all of humankind originated.
Later, continue onto Johannesburg and upon arrival check into your rooms at the Da Vinci Hotel.
In the evening, join your tour manager on a stroll to the nearby Nelson Mandela Square, (formerly Sandton Square). Take a picture next to the six foot high statue of the late president and anti-apartheid activist who the square is named after. There are many restaurant options for dinner as well as shopping.
Sunday, May 27, 2018
Enjoy breakfast at your hotel before departing for Tsakane. This morning the Tour Chorus will perform during a morning worship service at St. Paul’s Catholic Church in Tsakane, outside Johannesburg, near Kopanang.
This afternoon, depart for Pretoria, one of the country’s three capital cities. Visit the Union Buildings, the official seat of the Government and heritage landmark. Explore the exterior and surroundings gardens including famous Nelson Mandela Statue. Continue to Voortrekker Heights and visit the Voortrekker Monument. Dedicated to the history of Afrikaner, the Voortrekker Monument is the most visited monument in South Africa.
After returning to Johannesburg, this evening is free to enjoy at your leisure.
Monday, May 28, 2018
Following breakfast at your hotel, prepare for your day excursion. Today enhance your travel experience by volunteering with the Kopanang Project. The mission of the Kopanang community is to create a culture of sustainability and life-affirming services for those affected by HIV/AIDS in South Africa’s townships. Learn about the skills training provided to women through the project and see the artwork created by community members.
This afternoon, after lunch with the Kopnang members return to Johannesburg. En route, stop at Constitution Hill, a former prison and now a living museum. Learn about the history of S. Africa from colonialism to apartheid to democracy. Later, return to your Johannesburg hotel.
This evening is free for independent exploring.
Tuesday, May 29, 2018
This morning, enjoy breakfast at your hotel before departing for Soweto, a vast urban area infused with the history of the struggle against apartheid (travel time is approximately 1.5 hours).
Visit the Mandela House, the residence where Nelson Mandela lived from 1946-1962. Get a glimpse of the Mandela family’s life during the oppressive years of apartheid. Next, stop at the Hector Pieterson Museum that commemorates the students who were shot by police while protesting during the Sowto Uprising in June 16, 1976. June 16th is now recognized as National Youth Day in South Africa.
Enjoy a group lunch at a local restaurant. Afterwards, visit the Apartheid Museum, an interactive, multimedia museum dedicated to South Africa’s tumultuous past. The museum’s harsh, monolithic, concrete architecture was designed to resemble the conditions of Robben Island, where political prisoners including Nelson Mandela himself were incarcerated.
Return to your Johannesburg hotel. Tonight, enjoy leisure time to explore and have dinner on your own.
Wednesday, May 30, 2018
Following breakfast at your hotel, check out, load your luggage on your motor coach and transfer to the airport for a two-hour flight to Cape Town (Airfare to Cape Town is included in the Land Package).
Upon arrival, board your waiting motor coach for a guided drive through Cape Town. Embark on a cable car excursion up Table Mountain to enjoy sweeping views over the entire center of Cape Town and of the surrounding countryside and the waters of the Atlantic and Indian Oceans. It is believed that there are more plant species on Table Mountain alone than on the entirety of the British Isles.
Later in the afternoon, check into the Commodore Hotel located on the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, Cape Town's historic working harbor and South Africa's most-visited destination.
This evening, enjoy a special group dinner at a restaurant on the waterfront.
Thursday, May 31, 2018
Following breakfast at your hotel, spend the day exploring Cape Town with your local guide. Visit St. George's Cathedral, home of Emeritus Archbishop Desmond Tutu. Then drive to Bo-Kaap, formerly known as the Malay Quarter; a township situated above city center and an historical center of Cape Malay culture. Take a guided tour of the District Six Museum, which commemorates the forced expulsion of 60,000 people after the neighborhood was declared a white-only area in 1966.
Continue by coach to Hout Bay via Chapmans Peak. At Hout Bay, you will board a boat that will take you to the Seal Colony at Duiker Island, home to a squad of blubbery cape fur seals. Capture photos of the doe-eyed pups and their slick and slippery parents barking out warnings. The glass-bottomed boats offer a convenient porthole through which to spy the seals zipping past underwater. Enjoy lunch at Marines Wharf Hout Bay. We suggest ordering the traditional fish and chips!
In the afternoon, return to the hotel to prepare for your evening concert. Transfer to a nearby township, such as Gugulethu, on the outskirts of Cape Town where the Tour Chorus will perform a special concert for the local community. Following your performance, there will be time to socialize with your hosts and the audience.
Friday, June 1, 2018
Following breakfast in the hotel dining room, depart for a full-day excursion to the Cape Peninsula.
Travel alongside the Atlantic seaboard route over Chapmans Peak Drive, Cape Point, and Cape Good Hope. Stop and enjoy the breathtaking views.
Stop at Simon’s Town on the eastern shore of the Cape Peninsula to visit a penguin colony at Boulders Beach. Later travel by motorcoach to Cape Point National Park, a nature reserve encompassing 7,750 hectares of rich and varied flora and fauna as well as over 250 species of birds. Cape Point is a nature enthusiast’s paradise!
Before continuing on to Cape of Good Hope, there will be time for lunch and to take-in the surrounding majestic scenery. At Cape of Good Hope, board the flying funicular offering an exciting ride uphill to enjoy panoramic views. Later this afternoon, board your motor coach and return to your hotel in Cape Town. Enjoy the evening in Cape Town.
Saturday, June 2, 2018
Enjoy breakfast at the hotel then walk to the pier and board the ferry for Robben Island where a guided tour is arranged. Robben Island is the location where the late president and Nobel laureate Nelson Mandela was held captive for 27 years during the apartheid era. Today it is a World Heritage Site and museum, and a poignant reminder to the newly democratic South Africa of the price paid for freedom. Visit the infamous Maximum Security Prison guided by a former political prisoner. There will also be a guided bus tour of the island.
Return to the mainland and enjoy some leisure time at the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront or at your hotel.
Tonight perform a friendship concert alongside your host choir the Cape Town Unitarian Church. Enjoy performing for each other and exchanging over your shared love of music! There will be time to meet and mingle with your hosts following the concert.
Sunday, June 3, 2018
Following breakfast at your hotel, perform a concert at the Cape Town Unitarian Community as part of their Sunday Service.
Later, opt to visit the nearby Constantia Valley Wine Farm for a delicious lunch, a tour of the vineyards and a wine tasting. (Additional pricing apply) The Constantia Valley is home to some of the country’s oldest and most prestigious wine farms dating back to 1685. Alternatively, you may wish to spend this time for last minute souvenir shopping in Cape Town.
Tonight enjoy a festive farewell dinner at the Golden Restaurant for traditional African food. The evening starts with an interactive drumming session with a chance to play the djembe drum. Next, settle in for a sumptuous 14-course menu served at your table in an ancient courtyard. There will be many opportunities to recount the many highlights of your tour!
At the end of this special evening, return to the hotel for a good night’s rest and time to pack.
Monday, June 4, 2018 | DEPART SOUTH AFRICA or BEGIN 3 NIGHT EXTENSION: ZAMBEZI NATIONAL PARK AND VICTORIA FALLS, ZIMBABWE
Following breakfast at your hotel, check out and load your luggage onto the motorcoach. Enjoy a leisurely morning sightseeing and last minute souveniour shopping.
After lunch, board your motorcoach and depart for the Cape Town International Airport and your return flight to San Francisco. Depart Cape Town airport at 5:40 PM on Lufthansa flight #577 bound for Frankfurt, Germany.
Select meals, snacks, and refreshments will be served on board the flight. Welcome home!
For those traveling onto to Victoria Falls, please see itinerary below:
OPTIONAL 3 NIGHT EXTENSION: VICTORIA FALLS, Zimbabwe | Monday, June 4, 2018
In the early morning, check out of the hotel and transfer by motor coach to Cape Town International Airport. Board South African flight #302 departing for Johannesburg at 6:00 AM. Arrive in Johannesburg at 7:55 AM and transfer to your connecting flight. Depart for Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe at 10:50 AM on South African flight #40. Arrive at Victoria Falls International Airport at 12:30 PM. Upon arrival, collect your luggage and transfer by motor coach to A’Zambezi River Lodge located in Zimbabwe just 5km from Victoria Falls.
The A’Zambezi River Lodge is nestled in a tranquil spot on the riverbank shortly before the river thunders over the mighty Victoria Falls. Enjoy the many amenities of the luxurious lodge has to offer; relax, watch wildlife roam and experience the spirt of the Zambezi river!
Check into your room, unpack and refresh. The lodge offers a wide range of options for lunch and dinner at one of their three restaurants.
Tuesday, June 5, 2018 | FLIGHT HOME
Arrive in Frankfurt Germany at 5:40 AM and transfer to your connecting flight. Depart Frankfurt at 10:30 AM on Lufthansa flight #454 bound for San Francisco.
Arrive at San Francisco International airport at 12:55 PM. Welcome home!
Tuesday & Wednesday, June 5-6, 2018 | EXTENSION CONTINUES
In the morning, enjoy breakfast at the lodge before embarking on a day of sightseeing. During your stay at Victoria Falls, there are many exciting opportunities to experience the magnificent Victoria Falls. The following activities will be pre-arranged. Please register for these activities through the payment site, no later than March 22nd.
*Guided tour of Victoria Falls - Visit the national heritage site and one of the 7 wonders of the world, “The Victoria Falls.” You will be accompanied by qualified guides who will impart to you their vast knowledge and the history of the Falls, the formation of the Falls, the flora and fauna, birdlife, wildlife and other points of interest.
*River Cruise- Cruise where David Livingstone canoed on his quest to discover the falls over 160 years ago. Take-in a breathtaking sunset and soak up the spectacular scenery on a sunset dinner cruise.
*Chobe National Park (Botswana) – Full Day excursion – Visit one of the greatest game reserves in southern Africa famous for its abundance of elephants. Take a game river cruise and get up close to spectacular birds, hippos, crocodiles, buffalo and elephants. After lunch, take a guided drive through the park to look for lions, zebras and leopards before heading back to the A’Zambezi River Lodge.
*Helicopter Flight of Angels – Experience the magnificent Victoria Falls from above! Fly over the Victoria Falls in both directions giving you an unique panoramic view.
In addition, the A’Zambezi River Lodge offers a range of other options for sightseeing excursions that may be arranged directly through the lodge.
The lodge offers a wide range of options for lunch and dinner at one of their three restaurants.
Thursday, June 7, 2018
Enjoy breakfast at the lodge before departing by shuttle for your return flight to Johannesburg, South Africa. Depart Victoria Falls airport at 1:30 PM on South African flight #41 bound for Johannesburg arriving at 3:05 PM. Arrive at Johannesburg International Airport and transfer to your connecting flight. Depart at 7:25 PM on Swiss Air Lines flight #289 bound for Zurich.
Friday, June 8, 2018
Arrive in Zurich at 6:10 AM and transfer to your connecting flight. Depart Zurich International Airport at 1:10 PM on Swiss Air Lines flight #38 bound for San Francisco, CA arriving at 4:00 PM. Welcome home!
Check here within ten days of your departure to download a copy of your itinerary.
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