(This safari can stand alone or be easily combined with a trip to Botswana – see

the Botswana Sample Itinerary by clicking here)

Experience the best of Zimbabwe. Start with two nights in World Heritage Site of the Matobo Hills, a wilderness of granite, hoZim Sample Itin Pic 1me to rhinos, black eagles, ancient rock art, and early colonial history. Next, wake to the dawn chorus of birdlife outside your tree house in Ivory Safari Lodge for three days. The days are spent game-viewing with the climax at sunset – a herd of elephants splashing and wallowing in front of you. Recount the day’s memories by the fireside and then take a night drive to find those secretive creatures of the African darkness. Finally fall asleep to the purr of a nightjar and whoop of a distant hyena. Your final stop is Victoria Falls, the largest curtain of falling water in the world. Here is the home of adrenaline sports such as whitewater rafting, canoeing, and bungee jumping, or you can just take a calming cruise on the palm-lined Zambezi River.


(Click on each description box below to see detailed information about the activities and lodging.)

Open a new window for a printable PDF version of the complete itinerary.

Days 1-2: Depart the US; D’Oreale Grande Hotel, Johannesburg

Day 1: Depart the US

Day 2: Grand Hotel, Johannesburg

  • Upon arrival in Johannesburg, you are met and transferred to the Grand Hotel to relax and get some rest before starting your wonderful safari early in the morning. (Dinner excluded)

D’Oreale Grande Hotel

Located near the Johannesburg International Airport, the Grande Hotel offers deluxe service. Rivaling Zim Sample Itin Pic 2Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas, the hotel is surrounded by majestic buildings, magnificent gardens, and beautiful sculptures. To relax after your long flight, take a dip in the pool or get a massage at the full-service spa. Each fully appointed room has a telephone, TV, bath and shower, hair dryer, and coffee-making equipment. The 24-hour room service can help as your body adjusts to the new time zone.

Days 3-4: Camp Amalinda, Matobo National Park, Resident Elephants

Days 3-4: Camp Amalinda

  • Day 3: After breakfast, transfer by complimentary hotel shuttle to the airport for your flight to Bulawayo Airport where the Amalinda staff meets you in their private safari vehicle. Upon arrival at the camp, there will be time for lunch and exploring the camp before an afternoon game-viewing activity.
  • Day 4: A full day at leisure to enjoy game viewing and other camp activities.

Camp Amalinda

Camp Amalinda’s charm leaves an indelible impression on every visitor. Each of its ten individually thatched rooms is set into the huge granite boulders and has en suite facilities. The lounge and entertainment area is tucked away into a bushman shelter with a panoramic view of the Matobo Hills, and the swimming pool/bar overlooks the waterhole. Mammal and bird species are prolific and include the highest concentration of leopards and black eagles in the world. There are many fascinating activities at Amalinda, including game viewing (by vehicle and on foot), bird watching, visiting the numerous Bushman caves to see the ancient cave paintings, tracking black and white rhinos with experienced trackers, visiting Cecil John Rhodes’ grave and a nearby village, school, and traditional healer. You can even arrange walking and/or rock climbing in the Matobo Hills. Horseback riding and elephant riding are also available, at extra cost. After a full day, relax in the thatched-roof, fully-equipped health centre and spa or enjoy a sundowner cocktail while watching the magical sunset.

The Resident Elephants
In 1985, a severe drought had an extreme impact on the local wildlife. Two young orphaned elephants were rescued and relocated to Amalinda’s ranch where they were cared for and bottle-fed back to health. Now, years later these orphans Zim Sample Itin Pic 3have built an incredible relationship with humans and they revel in the pleasure of carrying people on their strong backs. During the full moon phase, a moonlight elephant back ride is a truly magical experience. The elephants are extremely social animals, and physical contact is an important part of their daily routine. Guests are encouraged to spend time interacting with the elephants. This intangible bonding between human and elephant is one of the most touching and memorable wildlife experiences you are likely to experience.

Matobo National Park

Matobo was established in 1953 and awarded World Heritage Status in June 2003. Its granite domes and castle kopjes are among the most majestic rock formations in the world. It is here that the hopes, trials, and tribulations of the San Bushmen are recorded in the ancient rock art. The intrinsic value of this cultural landscape stems from the way the cultural beliefs of the people over many millennia have been influenced by its rock formations and particular species of flora and fauna. Strong religious beliefs fostered by the landscape continue to play an important role in contemporary communities that regard The Matobo Hills as the seat of ancestral spirits and God.

Mammal and bird species are prolific and include the highest concentration of leopards and black eagles in the world. Because the park is an Intensive Protection Zone for endangered black and white rhinoceroses, it easy to sight one or more of this endangered species. Klipspringers, one of Zimbabwe’s rare antelopes, are also found here. Other animals found in Matobo include zebras, wildebeests, giraffes, kudus, elands, sables, hyenas, cheetahs, hippos, warthogs, dassies, waterbucks, wild cats, springhares, common duikers, crocodiles, baboons, and monkeys.

Days 5-7: Ivory Safari Camp, Hwange National Park

Days 5-7: Ivory Safari Camp

  • Day 5: This morning depart by road, traveling through interesting landscapes, learning history from the knowledgeable driver/guide, and spotting game as you reach Ivory Safari Camp in time for lunch. This afternoon enjoy game walks or drives, or enjoy simply watching nature from your private treetop suite.
  • Day 6: A full day to enjoy the many activities available.
  • Day 7: Another full day for leisure activities, a swim in the pool, and a special sundowner to toast farewell.

Ivory LodgeZim Sample Itin Pic 4

Known as the ‘place of the elephants’, the small, intimate Ivory Lodge is built in the treetops of the giant mystical teak forests that offer diverse habitats attracting a variety of wildlife and bird life. Each of the six luxurious suites sits on an elevated platform with sweeping views of the floodlit waterhole. The main buildings are set around the deep blue swimming pool, and there’s a hide next to the waterhole for incredible close-ups of the big five that frequent the pan. This truly is “big game” country with lions, elephants, leopards, and buffaloes seen regularly from camp and in the park. During the seasonal migration, huge elephant herds are attracted by Ivory Camp’s waterhole, and it is not unusual to have lumbering giants drift around your stilted platforms, their tusks glinting in salute to the sanctuary of shade offered by the massive trees. The professional guides are among the most highly trained and qualified in Africa. They become your personal safari companions as you walk with them on the camp’s property and in the park. It’s not all about the big game though; the guides show you much, much more.

Hwange National Park

Hwange National Park, one of Africa’s finest havens for wildlife, is home to vast herds of elephants, buffalos, and zebras, and it has a very large concentration of giraffes. It is also home to many predators and endangered species, plus a very large variety of birdlife. Covering just over 14,600 square kilometers, the park has 105 mammal species, including 19 large herbivores and eight large carnivores. It is the only protected area where gemsboks and brown hyenas occur in reasonable numbers, and the population of wild dog in Hwange is thought to be of one of the largest surviving groups in Africa. To travel through Hwange National Park today is to see what Africa might have been like more than 150 years ago.

Days 8-10: Victoria Falls Hotel, Victoria Falls, Lion Walk, Elephant-Back Safaris; Depart for the US

Days 8-9: Victoria Falls Hotel

  • Day 8: After breakfast you transfer by road to Victoria Falls. This afternoon take a guided tour of the Zimbabwe side of the falls, enjoy the hotel, and/or take a walk downtown before your sunset cruise on the Zambezi. ($5 River Usage fee payable direct) (Lunch/dinner excluded)
  • Day 9: Today is at leisure to enjoy walking around the small town, go for an elephant back safari, or enjoy one of the many other activities in the area. (Lunch/dinner excluded)

Victoria Falls

Follow the footsteps of the great explorer, David Livingstone, to the very edge of the awesome gorge that forms the world-famous Victoria Falls. This 1688-meter long rent in the earth’s surface, where thundering waters leap over the Zim Sample Itin Pic 5edge to the tumbled black rocks nearly 100 meters below, sends up great clouds of mist forming endless jeweled rainbows before drifting gently down to water the luxuriant rain forest below. Locally named “Mosi o Tunya” (the Smoke that Thunders), the Victoria Falls are completely unspoiled. Only well-kept gorge-side paths mark humans’ intrusion into one of the world’s greatest wonders.

Victoria Falls Hotel

This famous grand Edwardian-style hotel sits in a prime location overlooking Victoria Falls Bridge and gorge, with a private path to the falls (10-minute walk) and acres of lush gardens. The choice of activities is varied, including Zambezi River cruises, white water rafting, and the Flight of Angels over the Falls. All rooms have a shower and bath facilities, wall-to-wall carpeting, telephone, and air-conditioning. Of the three restaurants, only one has a formal dress code, while the other two are safari casual. For a cultural show, make sure to see the African Zulu dancers who entertain nightly at one of the restaurants. The large swimming pool has a poolside bar, and a wonderful gift shop at the hotel offers competitive prices for high-quality products. Wonderful shopping is also available at Elephant Walk, just a short walking distance from the hotel. If you are interested in any optional activities, it is best to arrange them in advance, particularly the flight over the falls in a fixed-wing plane, helicopter, or ultra-light. Another optional trip is to canoe on the Zambezi for a day trip and/or spend one night camping on the river. White water rafting can also be arranged. For those feeling lucky, there is a casino about a block away.

Lion walk

During this one-hour encounter, the lions allow you to join their pride as they run freely through the bush. You experience the adults stalking prey and/or cubs climbing trees, thrill as the cats brush past you, and learn about these majestic creatures from your professional guide who has lived with these cats most of his life. This is truly one of the most amazing experiences on the continent.

Elephant Back SafarisZim Sample Itin Pic 6

This unforgettable experience allows you to interact with the elephants as your ride through the bush spotting other wild elephants, buffalos, giraffes, zebras, and much more. As you pass along the Zambezi River, expect to see a host of bird species, crocodiles, and hippos. The actual ride is approximately one hour, but you should expect to spend some more time interacting with the elephants. This safari is only available in the early morning or late afternoon.

Day 10: Depart for the US

  • After a leisurely breakfast, transfer to the airport for your 1:35 pm flight arriving in Johannesburg at 3:10 pm, where you connect to your flight back home.



  • 1 night bed and breakfast at the Grand
  • 2 nights full board at Amalinda
  • 3 nights full board at Ivory Camp
  • 2 nights bed and breakfast at Victoria Falls Hotel
  • 2 game-viewing or other activities per day at Amalinda and Ivory Safari Lodge
  • Local beverages and laundry at Amalinda and Ivory Safari Lodge
  • Airport and airstrip transfers
  • Transport as indicated
  • Guided tour of Victoria Falls
  • Sundowner cruise on the Zambezi River
  • All park fees for listed visits
  • Flight from Johannesburg to Bulawayo
  • Flight from Victoria Falls to JohannesburgZim Sample Itin Pic 7


  • Items of a personal nature such as drinks, tobacco, laundry, phone calls, etc. except as listed above
  • Meals as indicated
  • Visas:
    • Zimbabwe: $50 (subject to change)
    • South Africa: Currently no charge
  • Entrance fee to Victoria Falls ($30 per person)
  • Gratuity to driver/guides
  • Incidental tips to hotel/lodge staff

Contact Enaja Safaris and Tours for pricing

and more information.