Take part in thrilling game drives in search of the elusive “Big Five” and witness the largest concentrations of wildlife and birds in Africa as you journey to South Africa, Botswana, Victoria Falls, and Zambia.

Starting at: $7,754 * Includes airfare, taxes & all fees Make a Reservation Ask Us A Question or Call 855-330-1542
 Elephants on the savanna  The powerful and dramatic Victoria Falls  Lion king. Credit: Smithsonian Journeys Expert Kirt Kempter  Lion pride. Credit: Smithsonian Journeys Expert Kirt Kempter  Cheetah on the savannah. Credit: Smithsonian Journeys Expert Kirt Kempter  Cheetah on the run. Credit: Smithsonian Journeys Expert Kirt Kempter  African Buffalo  African rhino on the savannah. Credit: Smithsonian Journeys Expert Grant Nel  Elephant viewing from the canoe. Credit: Smithsonian Journeys Expert Don Wilson  Elephant calf with mother. Credit: Smithsonian Journeys Expert Grant Nel  Giraffes on the savanna  Lilac-breasted roller  Flight of an African Fish Eagle in Zambia. Credit: Richard Sooy  Victoria Falls  On safari

African Safari

Featuring South Africa, Botswana, Zambia, and Victoria Falls

14 days from $7,754 | includes airfare, taxes and all fees

Take part in thrilling game drives in search of the elusive “Big Five” and witness the largest concentrations of wildlife and birds in Africa as you journey to South Africa, Botswana, Victoria Falls, and Zambia.

or Call 855-330-1542

Tour Details

TOUR BROCHURE

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WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

This trip far exceeded our lofty expectations. Words alone cannot describe the magic of this experience. 

- Mark S.

Boat cruises on the river with animals on either side were exciting, quiet, peaceful and truly spiritual, all at once! My favorite thing about this tour as a whole was the absence of other tourists. It was private and personal. A totally fabulous experience! 

- Previous Journeys Traveler

Africa and its wonders must be experienced in person! Nature at its best! A photographer's dream come true. 

- Allen S.

Like everyone told me, I returned convinced this was the "Best trip I ever took!" 

- Gwendolyn S.

If Africa is not on your bucket list, you need a new bucket! This trip should not be missed.

- Stewart G.

This journey was a lifetime experience we will always treasure. It was fun, relaxing, elegant, and educational. Our expert, guides, and hotel staff were so wonderful! They made it special.

- Carmen & Tony C.

"The African Safari with Smithsonian Journeys was the trip of a lifetime. Every detail was attended to, before and during the trip - an exceptional experience!"

- Beatrice, C.

JOURNEYS DISPATCHES

See All Journeys Dispatches ››

Accommodations

* Click on hotel name to visit hotel web-site.

Old Drift Lodge

Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

Located four miles upstream of the iconic Victoria Falls – the closest lodge within Zambezi National Park to Victoria Falls – the Old Drift Lodge sits on the banks of the Zambezi River. Along with views of the Zambezi and a water hole frequented by elephant, buffalo, zebra, giraffe, and other wildlife, the lodge offers a restaurant and bar. Each air-conditioned suite has a viewing deck and private plunge pool, as well as a private bath, tea- and coffee-making facilities, and mini-bar (replenished daily).

Number of nights: 3

54 on Bath

Johannesburg, South Africa

Opened in 2012, the contemporary 54 on Bath hotel is conveniently situated in the heart of Johannesburg's trendy Rosebank suburb, within walking distance of boutiques, restaurants, and art galleries. The 75-room hotel features a restaurant, bar, and lounge; outdoor pool; spa treatments; and laundry and dry cleaning services. All air-conditioned guest rooms have a private bath with hair dryer, complimentary Wi-Fi Internet access, TV, and phone.

Number of nights: 2

Chobe Marina Lodge

Chobe National Park, Botswana

Chobe Marina Lodge is situated on the south bank of the Chobe River, a short distance from the entrance of Chobe National Park. Along with extensive gardens containing a variety of wildlife, the well-situated 60-room lodge features such amenities as two restaurants, riverside bar, and poolside bar; tennis court; beauty salon and spa with massage treatments; outdoor pool; and Internet access (at a fee). Air-conditioned guest rooms, all with private patios overlooking the river and gardens, have private bath with hair dryer, mosquito netting, in-room safe, tea- and coffee-making facilities, mini-bar (stocked on request), TV, and phone.

Number of nights: 3

Royal Zambezi Lodge

Lower Zambezi National Park, Zambia

This recently built (April 2007) luxury lodge sits on the banks of the vast Zambezi at one of its broadest points, bordering the Lower Zambezi National Park and within a protected Game Management Area. Combining creature comforts and elegant hospitality with an unspoiled wilderness experience, the 14-room lodge offers an open-plan dining room and lounge, copper-roofed verandah, wide decks, campfire, outdoor pool, spa facilities, and afternoon tea. Game viewing activities include open-vehicle game drives, night drives, bush walks, boat safaris, and birding, as well as fishing and canoeing. Individual chalets with thatched roofs, positioned for optimal game viewing, have en suite bathroom and private verandahs.

Number of nights: 3



Radisson Blu Lusaka

Lusaka, Zambia

Fully renovated in 2012, the Radisson Blu Lusaka is situated a short drive from Lusaka’s city center and the airport.  The 142-room hotel’s amenities include a restaurant, poolside bar and bar/lounge; fitness center; outdoor pool; and gift shop.  Tastefully appointed guest rooms are air-conditioned and have private bath with hair dryer, complimentary Wi-Fi access, TV, and phone. (Day room)

Tour Extension

Cape Town Post-Program Option  4 Days, 3 Nights

Discover South Africa’s sparkling Cape Town, from Table Mountain and the Malay Quarter to the Cape Peninsula and The Winelands. Your tour extension price includes:

  • Air transportation Lusaka/Cape Town inclusive of airline taxes and departure fees
  • 3 nights’ accommodations at the Table Bay Hotel (Deluxe)
  • 6 meals: 3 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 1 dinner
  • Extensive included sightseeing: full-day Cape Peninsula tour; full-day Cape Town and the Winelands region tour
  • Services of a professional tour representative
  • Private motorcoach/van transportation
  • Transfers to/from airport
  • Gratuities for tour representative, dining room servers, airport and hotel porters, and all drivers

Table Bay Hotel
Standing in the heart of Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, The Table Bay Hotel provides stunning views of Table Mountain and Cape Town Harbour.  Combining contemporary décor and Victorian accents, the hotel offers two restaurants, two bars, and lounge; spa with massage treatments and steam rooms; fitness center; internet access; laundry and dry cleaning services; heated outdoor pool; and complimentary shuttle service.  The 329 air-conditioned rooms have private bath with hair dryer, tea- and coffee-making facilities, in-room safe, complimentary Wi-Fi Internet access; mini-bar, TV, and phone.

Please note that guests on the extension will proceed directly to Cape Town and will not use the hotel day room in Lusaka on Day 13.

Activity Level

Activity Level 3:  Moderate / Active


Expectations: Most trips will feature long touring days, many full-day excursions, and a full and active itinerary with a faster pace and longer distances. Some tours may have activities with higher intensity and more active choices/options. Excursions require standing and walking for extended periods of time over more difficult terrain (cobblestones, city hills, stairs without handrails, limited or no access to elevators, muddy/slippery walking/hiking trails), and walking to city centers where coaches are prohibited. Specific itineraries may feature hiking, use of local transportation, extended overnight train travel, extensive use of Zodiac crafts or other smaller ship conveyances, or multiple internal plane rides. Some itineraries may require early morning departures and later evening returns. Travelers may be in remote and/or rugged regions, and may be touring at higher altitudes with steep ascents/descents. Leisure time may be limited (sometimes only in the later evenings). Certain tours feature more active excursions (such as moderate hiking, swimming, snorkeling, canoeing, bicycling, rafting, or kayaking), though another choice may be offered for an alternate skill level. Walking/hiking tours may feature up to six-mile walks/hikes.  

Appropriate for: Travelers who are physically fit, lead active lives, are comfortable participating in long days of activities, and expect some physical exertion. 

Testimonials

WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

This trip far exceeded our lofty expectations. Words alone cannot describe the magic of this experience. 

- Mark S.

Boat cruises on the river with animals on either side were exciting, quiet, peaceful and truly spiritual, all at once! My favorite thing about this tour as a whole was the absence of other tourists. It was private and personal. A totally fabulous experience! 

- Previous Journeys Traveler

Africa and its wonders must be experienced in person! Nature at its best! A photographer's dream come true. 

- Allen S.

Like everyone told me, I returned convinced this was the "Best trip I ever took!" 

- Gwendolyn S.

If Africa is not on your bucket list, you need a new bucket! This trip should not be missed.

- Stewart G.

This journey was a lifetime experience we will always treasure. It was fun, relaxing, elegant, and educational. Our expert, guides, and hotel staff were so wonderful! They made it special.

- Carmen & Tony C.

"The African Safari with Smithsonian Journeys was the trip of a lifetime. Every detail was attended to, before and during the trip - an exceptional experience!"

- Beatrice, C.
Reading List
Africa: A Biography of the Continent
By: John Reader
In 1978, paleontologists in East Africa discovered the earliest evidence of our divergence from the apes: three pre-human footprints, striding away from a volcano, were preserved in the petrified surface of a mudpan over three million years ago. Out of Africa, the world's most ancient and stable landmass, Homo sapiens dispersed across the globe.  And yet the continent that gave birth to human history has long been woefully misunderstood and mistreated by the rest of the world.In a book as splendid in its wealth of information as it is breathtaking in scope, British writer and photojournalist John Reader brings to light Africa's geology and evolution, the majestic array of its landforms and environments, the rich diversity of its peoples and their ways of life, the devastating legacies of slavery and colonialism as well as recent political troubles and triumphs. Written in simple, elegant prose and illustrated with Reader's own photographs, Africa: A Biography of the Continent is an unforgettable book that will delight the general reader and expert alike.
Wildlife of Southern Africa (Princeton Pocket Guides)
By: Martin B. Withers, David Hosking
Highly portable, concise, and informative, this is the essential guide for identifying Southern Africa's most visible wildlife. Featuring full-color photos of more than 400 species of birds, mammals, snakes, lizards, and insects, Wildlife of Southern Africa provides a spectacular sense of what travelers can see in the major game reserves and national parks of South Africa, Swaziland, Lesotho, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, and southern Mozambique. Each species in this guide is accompanied by at least one full-color photograph plus a full textual description. Tips on wildlife photography as well as information on how to make the most of a safari are also included. This is a must-have guide for anyone planning or dreaming about a visit to this fascinating part of the world.Highly portable and informative guide to the wildlife of Southern Africa Hundreds of full-color photos detail more than 400 species At least one full-color photograph and full textual description for each species Tips on wildlife photography and making the most of a safari
The Safari Companion: A Guide to Watching African Mammals
By: Richard D. Estes
Since its original publication in 1993, The Safari Companion has been the best field guide to observing and understanding the behavior of African mammals. An indispensable tool for naturalists traveling to Africa, this new edition has been revised to acknowledge the enthusiasm to those watching these magnificent animals at zoos and wildlife parks, and on film. The Safari Companion enables readers to recognize and interpret visible behavioral activities, such as courtship rituals, territorial marking, aggression, and care of young. Each account of over 80 species includes a behavioral table in which the unique actions of the hoofed mammals, carnivores, and primates are described for easy reference. In addition, useful maps show the major national boundaries, vegetation zones, and game parks relevant to the guide. The book includes an extensive glossary, as well as tips on wildlife photography, a list of organizations working to protect African wildlife, and advice on where and when to see the animals.
South Africa, Namibia, and Botswana - Flash Guide - 1:2,000,000 (English, French, Italian and German Edition)
By: Hallwag
Folded road map of South Africa, Namibia, and Botswana. Includes places of interest, travel information, and an index of place names.
Botswana - Culture Smart!: The Essential Guide to Customs & Culture
By: Michael Main
Culture Smart! provides essential information on attitudes, beliefs and behavior in different countries, ensuring that you arrive at your destination aware of basic manners, common courtesies, and sensitive issues. These concise guides tell you what to expect, how to behave, and how to establish a rapport with your hosts. This inside knowledge will enable you to steer clear of embarrassing gaffes and mistakes, feel confident in unfamiliar situations, and develop trust, friendships, and successful business relationships. Culture Smart! offers illuminating insights into the culture and society of a particular country. It will help you to turn your visit-whether on business or for pleasure-into a memorable and enriching experience. Contents include * customs, values, and traditions * historical, religious, and political background * life at home * leisure, social, and cultural life * eating and drinking * dos, don'ts, and taboos * business practices * communication, spoken and unspoken
Botswana Safari Guide: Okavango Delta, Chobe, Northern Kalahari (Bradt Travel Guide)
By: Chris McIntyre
A safari in northern Botswana takes the traveller to a wilderness populated almost exclusively by wildlife. Here are the predators and their prey; here, too, are the elephants, the hippos and the astonishing birdlife of the Okavango Delta. This fourth edition of Bradt's Botswana Safari Guide provides unrivalled coverage of the region's wildlife, environment and history, as well as a thorough evaluation of when, where and how to go. The guide, written by an expert author, focuses on the country’s most popular areas, the Okavango Delta and the Kalahari and Chobe deserts.
Safari Planning Map to East and Southern Africa: Okavango Delta to Victoria Falls, Serengeti to Mt. Kilimanjaro, Best Time to Go/Wildlife Charts
By: Mark W. Nolting
The only safari-planning map to Africa on the market, this essential travel tool includes key elements for planning a successful safari. A work of art in itself, this large-scale color map includes all of the top safari countries and important wildlife reserves in East and Southern Africa, the best times to go for wildlife viewing, info on what wildlife is best round where, temperature and rainfall charts, enlargements of the key regions visited by most travelers, a map of the Great Serengeti Migration and enlargements of other popular reserves, and the location of the best safari camps and lodges. Emphasizing wildlife areas over road systems, which are irrelevant to most safari-goers this map is by the author of Africa's Top Wildlife Countries and the African Safari Journal and Field Guide.
The Fortunes of Africa: A 5000-Year History of Wealth, Greed, and Endeavor
By: Martin Meredith
Africa has been coveted for its riches ever since the era of the Pharaohs. In past centuries, it was the lure of gold, ivory, and slaves that drew fortune-seekers, merchant-adventurers, and conquerors from afar. In modern times, the focus of attention is on oil, diamonds, and other valuable minerals.Land was another prize. The Romans relied on their colonies in northern Africa for vital grain shipments to feed the population of Rome. Arab invaders followed in their wake, eventually colonizing the entire region. More recently, foreign corporations have acquired huge tracts of land to secure food supplies needed abroad, just as the Romans did.In this vast and vivid panorama of history, Martin Meredith follows the fortunes of Africa over a period of 5,000 years. With compelling narrative, he traces the rise and fall of ancient kingdoms and empires; the spread of Christianity and Islam; the enduring quest for gold and other riches; the exploits of explorers and missionaries; and the impact of European colonization. He examines, too, the fate of modern African states and concludes with a glimpse of their future.His cast of characters includes religious leaders, mining magnates, warlords, dictators, and many other legendary figures—among them Mansa Musa, ruler of the medieval Mali empire, said to be the richest man the world has ever known. “I speak of Africa,” Shakespeare wrote, “and of golden joys.” This is history on an epic scale.
The Scramble for Africa: White Man's Conquest of the Dark Continent from 1876 to 1912
By: Thomas Pakenham
From the rear cover of this 738 page book: "A phenomenal achievement, clear, authoritative and compelling......Thomas Pakenham's fine book tells the story of this particular gold rush with admirable and judicious poise....Contains some of the best-known episodes of 19th-Century history as well as some of the most mythologized and colorful characters the world has ever seen.....Livingstone and Stanley, Brazza and Rhodes, Kitchener and Gordon, Lugard and Jameson.....Highly readable." and "Taking the entire continent as his canvas, Pakenham has painted a picture of heroism and horror. He writes both with compassion and with an effective combination of detachment and judgement. A splendid book."
Whatever You Do, Don't Run: True Tales Of A Botswana Safari Guide
By: Peter Allison
A hilarious, highly original collection of essays based on the Botswana truism: “only food runs!” With a new introduction and new material from the authorIn the tradition of Bill Bryson, a new writer brings us the lively adventures and biting wit of an African safari guide. Peter Allison gives us the guide’s-eye view of living in the bush, confronting the world’s fiercest terrain of wild animals and, most challenging of all, managing herds of gaping tourists. Passionate for the animals of the Kalahari, Allison works as a top safari guide in the wildlife-rich Okavango Delta. As he serves the whims of his wealthy clients, he often has to stop the impulse to run as far away from them as he can, as these tourists are sometimes more dangerous than a pride of lions. No one could make up these outrageous-but-true tales: the young woman who rejected the recommended safari-friendly khaki to wear a more “fashionable” hot pink ensemble; the lost tourist who happened to be drunk, half-naked, and a member of the British royal family; establishing a real friendship with the continent’s most vicious animal; the Japanese tourist who requested a repeat performance of Allison’s being charged by a lion so he could videotape it; and spending a crazy night in the wild after blowing a tire on a tour bus, revealing that Allison has as much good-natured scorn for himself. The author’s humor is exceeded only by his love and respect for the animals, and his goal is to limit any negative exposure to humans by planning trips that are minimally invasive—unfortunately it doesn’t always work out that way!New story: People often ask safari guides about the experience that frightened them the most. In this story Peter Allison tells of the time he became aware of unseen danger, and knew that somewhere within meters of him was a hunting lioness. Peter Allison is originally from Sydney, Australia. His safaris have been featured in National Geographic, Conde Nast Traveler, and on television programs such as Jack Hanna’s Animal Adventures. He travels frequently to speaking appearances, and splits most of his time between Botswana, Sydney, and San Francisco.
Into Africa: The Epic Adventures of Stanley and Livingstone
By: Martin Dugard
"Into Africa" traces the journeys of Dr. David Livingstone and journalist Morton Stanley in alternating chapters, capturing with immediacy the dangers, disease, and beauty they encountered in the heart of Africa. The first book to examine the interworkings of physical challenges, political intrigue, and larger-than life personalities, this is a fascinating work of narrative history.
Cry of the Kalahari: Seven Years in Africa's Last Great Wilderness
By: Mark Owens
As illustrated. Dustcover has sl handling and shelf wear more at top and bottom of spine less on other edges. Boards are light brown with black cloth on which the lettering is in gold. Text clean and unmarked.
Twenty Chickens for a Saddle: The Story of an African Childhood
By: Robyn Scott
An exquisitely rendered portrait of an African childhood from an astonishing new talentWhen Robyn Scott 's parents decide to uproot their young family from New Zealand and move to a converted cowshed in rural Botswana, life for six-year-old Robyn changed forever. In this wild and new landscape excitement can be found around every corner, and with each misadventure she and her family learn more about the quirks, charms, and challenges of living in one of Africa's most remarkable and beautiful countries as it stands on the brink of an epidemic. When AIDS rears its head, the Scotts witness the early appearances of a disease that will devastate this peaceful and prosperous country. Told with clear-eyed unsentimental affection, Twenty Chickens for a Saddle is about a family's enthusiasm for each other and the world around them, with the essence of Africa infusing every page.
The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency (Book 1)
By: Alexander McCall Smith
THE NO. 1 LADIES’ DETECTIVE AGENCY - Book 1Fans around the world adore the best-selling No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series and its proprietor, Precious Ramotswe, Botswana’s premier lady detective. In this charming series, Mma  Ramotswe—with help from her loyal associate, Grace Makutsi—navigates her cases and her personal life with wisdom, good humor, and the occasional cup of tea.This first novel in Alexander McCall Smith’s widely acclaimed The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series tells the story of the delightfully cunning and enormously engaging Precious Ramotswe, who is drawn to her profession to “help people with problems in their lives.” Immediately upon setting up shop in a small storefront in Gaborone, she is hired to track down a missing husband, uncover a con man, and follow a wayward daughter. But the case that tugs at her heart, and lands her in danger, is a missing eleven-year-old boy, who may have been snatched by witchdoctors.The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency received two Booker Judges’ Special Recommendations and was voted one of the International Books of the Year and the Millennium by the Times Literary Supplement.
Mortals
By: Norman Rush
At once a political adventure, a portrait of a passionate but imperiled marriage, and an acrobatic novel of ideas, Mortals marks Norman Rush’s return to the territory he has made his own, the southern African nation of Botswana. Nobody here is entirely what he claims to be. Ray Finch is not just a middle-aged Milton scholar but a CIA agent. His lovely and doted-upon wife Iris is also a possible adulteress. And Davis Morel, the black alternative physician who is treating her--while undertaking a quixotic campaign to de-Christianize Africa—may also be her lover. As a spy, the compulsively literate Ray ought to have no trouble confirming his suspicions. But there’s the distraction of actual spying. Most of all, there’s the problem of love, which Norman Rush anatomizes in all its hopeless splendor in a novel that would have delighted Milton, Nabokov, and Graham Greene.
Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight: An African Childhood
By: Alexandra Fuller
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • A worthy heir to Isak Dinesen and Beryl Markham, Alexandra Fuller shares visceral memories of her childhood in Africa, and of her headstrong, unforgettable mother. “This is not a book you read just once, but a tale of terrible beauty to get lost in over and over.”—Newsweek “By turns mischievous and openhearted, earthy and soaring . . . hair-raising, horrific, and thrilling.”—The New Yorker Though it is a diary of an unruly life in an often inhospitable place, Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight is suffused with Fuller’s endearing ability to find laughter, even when there is little to celebrate. Fuller’s debut is unsentimental and unflinching but always captivating. In wry and sometimes hilarious prose, she stares down disaster and looks back with rage and love at the life of an extraordinary family in an extraordinary time. From 1972 to 1990, Alexandra Fuller—known to friends and family as Bobo—grew up on several farms in southern and central Africa. Her father joined up on the side of the white government in the Rhodesian civil war, and was often away fighting against the powerful black guerilla factions. Her mother, in turn, flung herself at their African life and its rugged farm work with the same passion and maniacal energy she brought to everything else. Though she loved her children, she was no hand-holder and had little tolerance for neediness. She nurtured her daughters in other ways: She taught them, by example, to be resilient and self-sufficient, to have strong wills and strong opinions, and to embrace life wholeheartedly, despite and because of difficult circumstances. And she instilled in Bobo, particularly, a love of reading and of storytelling that proved to be her salvation. Alexandra Fuller writes poignantly about a girl becoming a woman and a writer against a backdrop of unrest, not just in her country but in her home. But Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight is more than a survivor’s story. It is the story of one woman’s unbreakable bond with a continent and the people who inhabit it, a portrait lovingly realized and deeply felt.Praise for Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight“Riveting . . . [full of] humor and compassion.”—O: The Oprah Magazine “The incredible story of an incredible childhood.”—The Providence Journal
Colour Bar: A United Kingdom
By: Susan Williams
London, 1945: the heir apparent to the kingship of Bechuanaland (later Botswana) arrives in Britain to complete his legal studies. Seretse Khama, an urbane 24-year-old, educated like Mandela at Fore Hare, is welcomed into the elite world of the Inner Temple in London. But then, in 1947, he does something that will change the course of his life, and that of his country, forcing him into six long years of exile: he falls in love with a white British woman, Ruth Williams. Drawing on a mass of previously classified records, Susan Williams tells Seretse and Ruth's story—an astonishing account of how the British Government conspired with apartheid South Africa and Rhodesia to prevent the mixed-race royal couple returning home. This is a shocking account of a shameful period of British history: overt racism on the streets of London and the corridors of Whitehall, and of appeasement to apartheid South Africa. But it is also an inspiring, triumphant tale of hope, courage, and true love, as with tenacity and great dignity Seretse and Ruth and the Bangwato people overcome prejudice in their fight for justice.
National Audubon Society Field Guide to African Wildlife
By: Peter C. Alden, Richard D. Estes, Duane Schlitter, Bunny McBride
The birds, mammals, reptiles and insects of Africa--a continent unparalleled in its ecological richness--are brought to life in this authoritative, compact field guide, an essential companion for safari-goers and armchair travelers alike.This guide is packed with nearly 600 stunning color photographs of African habitats and animals, and provides a wealth of information on more than 850 species compiled by veteran safari leaders and experts in African wildlife. The parks and reserves for which the continent is famous are described in thorough detail, taking the reader on an unforgettable virtual safari.
Big Five of Africa
By: Gerald Hinde
Here’s a superb collection of in-your-face images of Africa’s magnificent Big Five – lion, leopard, rhino, buffalo and elephant. Award-winning wildlife photographer Gerald Hinde has long been enthralled by these magnificent animals and has spent countless hours in the field, experiencing them in all their different moods and behaviors. Big Five of Africa beautifully reproduces some of the more remarkable moments he has captured on film during his visits to the wildlife sanctuaries of southern and East Africa. Brief but informative text introduces each animal in turn, providing interesting insights into the nature of these formidable, yet compelling, creatures.
The Kingdon Pocket Guide to African Mammals (Princeton Pocket Guides)
By: Jonathan Kingdon
This is an essential guide for anyone with an interest in wildlife who visits Africa--from the tourist on safari to the more experienced naturalist. Compact and beautifully illustrated, it is ideal for use in the field, while its coverage is the most comprehensive for any book of its size. First pocket guide to cover every species of terrestrial African mammal Adapted from the highly acclaimed Kingdon Field Guide to African Mammals Fully illustrated with the author's superb color artwork Easy-to-read distribution maps Concise text and clear layout for quick, easy reference Practical format makes it ideal for use in the field
Southern African Mammals Made Simple
By: Gordon King, Doug Newman
Southern African Mammals Made Simple is an exciting new mammal identification guide that uses a novel 3-stage ID system to identify even the most obscure mammals. For each of the 115 species, there is a photograph and drawing highlighting the animal’s distinctive features, a description and a distribution map. An easy-to-use and foolproof ID guide, it is ideal for anyone with an interest in southern African mammals. Ingenious, easy-to-use and virtually foolproof, it offers step-by-step progress towards sure identification. Written in a concise, structured format, it is ideal for taking on trips to the game reserve, and for novices right through to more experienced naturalists. Excellent for use in game parks or just to demystify similar-looking mammal species.
Newman's Birds of Southern Africa: 10th Edition
By: Kenneth Newman
This commemorative tenth edition celebrates the contribution of the late author, Kenneth Newman, fully revised and updated by his daughter, Vanessa Newman, to reflect the latest research, taxonomy and common names. Newman's Birds of Southern Africa, a leading field guide in the region, illustrates and fully describes all the birds recorded from the Antarctic to the Zambezi River. The familiar, user-friendly format of Newman's Birds has been subtly modernized for a fresh look, and plate annotations have been added to the large, accurate paintings of each species, in line with modern trends.
Cats of Africa
By: Paul Bosman, Anthony Hall-Martin
Cats of Africa celebrates the power and grandeur of the three large cats, but it also offers fascinating introductions to their smaller relatives. Here we discover that the diminutive sand cat has feet covered with long hair on the undersides for better grip on loose, hot sand. We marvel at the enigmatic African golden cat of the rainforests, the caracal, the serval, the African wild cat, the swamp cat, and the secretive, reputedly ferocious black-footed cat, the smallest of all.Bringing together Paul Bosman's eloquent paintings and drawings and the extensive scientific knowledge of Anthony Hall-Martin, Cats of Africa depicts the cats' fascinating daily lives while advocating the conservation and proper management of the complex ecosystems that support them. For each species, the book provides a distribution map and biological data—including habitat, size, diet, reproduction, behavior, and conservation status. With a glossary of terms, an extensive index, and an international list of interest groups, this volume will serve as an indispensable reference to anyone with an interest in Africa's cats—from armchair game viewers to students of natural history and professional conservationists.
Travel Insurance

For the convenience of our travelers, Smithsonian Journeys includes an on-tour Provided Insurance Plan through Travel Guard with the price of your tour. This travel insurance plan includes On-tour medical evacuation insurance (up to $100,000), emergency medical expense coverage (up to $25,000), dental expense coverage (up to $500), travel medical assistance and worldwide travel assistance (U.S. Residents only, not including U.S. Territories). Travel must be more than 100 miles from the Insured’s primary residence.

In addition, you may want to consider purchasing travel insurance to protect your investment from unforeseen events, such as missed flight connections, lost luggage, and cancelled plans. There are many plans you can consider. For your convenience, you may visit www.TravelGuard.com/SmithsonianJourneys or call Travel Guard at 1.800.208.6142 to learn more.

Terms and conditions

Mission

Smithsonian Journeys engage travelers in the mission of the Smithsonian – “the increase and diffusion of knowledge.” Like the Institution, our tours enrich our guests’ lives and satisfy their curiosity about the world. Your participation benefits the work of Smithsonian’s 19 museums, National Zoo, and nine research centers, helping to preserve our national treasures and shape the future through science, research, and exhibitions.

What Is Included in the Tour Cost

  • Expertise of a Smithsonian Journeys expert, tour director and local guides throughout the tour
  • All gratuities for the expert, tour director, on-tour guides and drivers
  • On-tour medical evacuation insurance (up to $100,000), emergency medical expense coverage (up to $25,000), dental expense coverage (up to $500), travel medical assistance and worldwide travel assistance (U.S. residents only)
  • Pre-tour information, including a reading list
  • Transfers and luggage handling abroad (for air inclusive guests)
  • All on-tour transportation including flights within the itinerary, unless otherwise noted
  • All accommodations for the duration of the tour
  • Meals, as noted in the itinerary (B-breakfast; L-lunch; D-dinner)
  • All sightseeing and visits as noted in each itinerary
  • Airfare to/from your departure city, airline taxes, surcharges, and fees, which are subject to change until final payment is made (for air inclusive guests only)

What Is Not Included in the Tour Cost

  • Passport and all visa fees and photos; immunization(s); and any other travel documentation fees as required
  • Optional travel insurance, including cancellation/delay/lost baggage insurance (learn more at TravelGuard.com/SmithsonianJourneys)
  • Personal items, unless otherwise stated, such as wine, liquors, a-la-carte orders
  • Expenses incurred by our tour operator in making any individual travel arrangements in conjunction with the tour
  • Airline baggage and other airline fees and associated taxes, unless noted in Tour description
  • Transfers and baggage handling abroad when purchasing “land only” package
  • Communication Charges (e.g.: phone, internet, etc.)
  • Other items noted as optional or not specifically mentioned as included
  • Airfare from your hometown to your departure city (for air inclusive guests only).

Registration

To submit a reservation request, please use our secure online system at SmithsonianJourneys.org or contact a Cultural Travel Specialist, at 1-855-330-1542 Mon-Fri 9 am - 7 pm; Sat 9 am – 4 pm (Eastern Time). Submitting an online request does not guarantee space on a tour.  You will be notified by a Reservation Specialist of your status once your request has been received and processed.  Please note: No new registrations can be accepted within 30 days of most tours. Some tours are more restrictive; please see individual tour pages for these exceptions.

To complete your reservation, the following information is required.
In accordance with the Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) Secure Flight program, for all international tours, passport information is required, including the following:   Full name as it appears on your passport, Date of birth, and Gender (for further information, please visit www.tsa.gov).

For tours that include round-trip international airfare: If you provide incorrect information to the ticketing agent, or if you use a different passport than originally cited, you will be responsible for charges associated with the ticket’s reissue.

Payments

A deposit of $500 per person for a land tour reservation, unless otherwise noted, is required to reserve a space on a tour.  All payments may be made by credit card or check to the tour operator.  Deposits are applied to final payment of the tour price.

Final payment is due 95 days prior to departure, unless otherwise noted.  Balance is due upon invoicing.  If full payment is not received by the final payment due date, your place cannot be guaranteed on the tour.

Late Registration

Any registration received within 95 days (180 for Alaska) of departure is considered “on-request” and is subject to specific confirmation. Some tours are more restrictive. Payment in full must be made immediately by credit card, or by check sent by overnight mail to the tour operator, before confirmation is possible.

Once confirmed, cancellation penalties apply as set forth below. If confirmation is not possible, all payments made will be refunded in full. Late registration confirmation procedures apply to any participant who is transferred from the wait list to the tour within the designated late registration period for that tour.

For additional information, please contact a Cultural Travel Specialist, at 1-855-330-1542 Mon-Fri 9 am - 7 pm; Sat 9 am – 4 pm (Eastern Time), or SJReservations@si.edu and SmithsonianJourneys.org.

A Note about Costs

All prices are based on two persons sharing a room/cabin. All prices are quoted in U.S. dollars. Tour costs are based upon current airfares, tariffs, currency values, and on the basis of a presumptive minimum number of participants. While we will do everything possible to maintain the listed prices, they are subject to change.   Due to fluctuations in oil prices, a fuel surcharge may be added to your tour fee (e.g. internal flights, cruises, etc.).  Details and costs will be advised prior to departure.

Wait List

If the tour of your choice is fully subscribed, you may choose to be placed on a waitlist by contacting a Reservation Specialist at 1-855-330-1542 Mon-Fri 9 am - 7 pm; Sat 9 am – 4 pm (Eastern Time), or SJReservations@si.edu. Individuals on the wait list will be contacted if space becomes available and can inquire about tour status by contacting a Reservation Specialist. If you choose to withdraw from a wait list, please notify us.  

Cancellation and Refund Policy

Following enrollment, a participant’s withdrawal from the tour for any reason, including, but not limited to, illness, injury, family engagements, work-related issues, or geopolitical concerns, etc., will be deemed a cancellation. Please understand that there will be no exceptions to our cancellation policy.

Per person cancellation fees are based on date of written notice to Smithsonian Journeys. Tour operator will refund on the following basis:

  • Cancellations within 7 days of booking:  Full Refund (unless it is within final payment date, 95 days before departure)
  • Cancellations after 7 days of booking:  Full Deposit Retained
  • Cancellations made within final payment date, 95 days before departure:  No Refund
  • Cancellation by Smithsonian Journeys:  Full Refund or Credit

Please understand that there will be no exceptions to our cancellation policy.

Smithsonian Journeys recommends that all participants purchase travel insurance.

If your flights are delayed or if for any reason you are prevented from joining the tour on the scheduled departure date and time, or if you choose to leave the tour early, we cannot provide a full or partial refund or credit toward a future tour.

Smithsonian Journeys reserves the right to cancel any tour due to low enrollment and when a U.S. Department of State Travel Warning is issued for the destination.

Air Service

For tours that include round-trip international airfare, rates are based on economy class from designated departure cities as shown.  Airfares from other cities are available upon request.  Airline upgrades at additional cost may be available on request for the international portion of your flight.  If an air schedule requires an overnight stay in a gateway city, the cost of the overnight will be at your expense.  For tours that include round-trip international airfare, the tour operator  will be happy to help with arrangements. Please note that seat assignments for your international flights is usually done at airport check-in. The tour operator is unable to guarantee any seat assignments.

When planning our tours that include international round-trip airfare, the tour operator contracts with those airlines that they feel provide the level of service, routings, and value necessary for your entire trip. While another airline may offer a more direct connection, it may be at a price unavailable at the lower group rates that enable us to offer you the best possible travel value. Please note that frequent flyer mileage credits are issued at the discretion of the airline(s) and may not be available for the flights on your tour. If you prefer to make your own airline reservations, “land only” pricing is available on most of our tours.

Air Service/Tickets Purchased Independently of the Tour

International and domestic air schedules are subject to change at any time. Tours can also be canceled due to low enrollments. If you make your own airline reservations, we recommend that you do not purchase nonrefundable tickets or tickets with high penalties for changes. 

We urge you to check airline cancellation penalties before purchasing airline tickets since international departure times and flights can change. Neither the Smithsonian Institution nor the tour operator accepts liability for cancellation penalties related to domestic or international airline tickets purchased independently in conjunction with a tour.

Travel Insurance- Cancellation/Delay/Lost Baggage

Smithsonian Journeys recommends that all participants purchase travel insurance.  Learn more at TravelGuard.com/SmithsonianJourneys.

Travel Documents and Information

Participants are responsible for obtaining any documents required for their participation in the tour such as a valid passport, all visas, vaccination certificates, and any other documents. If your tour requires a visa or other entry documents, we will send you the appropriate information after you make a reservation.  Failure to obtain documents does not negate the terms and conditions, and any extra costs incurred for rerouting or delay due to travel without the necessary documents will be the participant’s responsibility. If you are not a U.S. citizen, please contact your embassy or consulate to ensure you obtain the proper documentation.

For all international departures, a passport valid for at least six months after the completion of your tour, and with at least six blank visa pages, is required for U.S. citizens on all tours. The U.S. Department of State will no longer add visa pages into U.S. passports beginning January 1, 2016. The decision to discontinue this service was made to enhance the security of the passport and to abide by international passport standards. Beginning January 1, 2016, applicants in need of additional pages in their valid passports must obtain a new passport. For more information on how or where to apply, please visit Travel.State.Gov/ApplyEarly or call the National Passport Information Center toll-free at 1-877-487-2778/1-888-874-7793 (TTY/TTD).

For more information about traveling to destinations abroad, we recommend the “Learn about your destination” section on the U.S. Department of State travel website www.travel.state.gov.  For medical information, we recommend contacting the Centers for Disease Control at (877) FYI-TRIP or www.cdc.gov/travel

Physical and Medical Considerations

To enjoy the travel experience, participants should be in good physical and mental health. All tours require an element of walking (up to two miles per day over uneven terrain) and of climbing stairs, often without handrails. Participants should have sufficient stamina to keep pace with an active group of participants on long days of touring. If you have any questions about your ability to participate in a tour, please call us at 855-330-1542. Any physical condition, diet, or special request for accommodation must be identified in writing on the Personal Information Form when the reservation is made. Some tours have additional information regarding physical and medical considerations, which may be discussed with the Reservation Specialist at 855-330-1542.

Please be aware that health care standards, facilities, and services abroad may be different or even inadequate for treating certain health conditions.  It is essential that you inform us in writing (on the provided Personal Information Form) of any existing condition for which you may require medical attention or accommodation during the tour. We will make reasonable efforts to accommodate the needs of our participants; however, services of a personal nature cannot be expected or guaranteed. By forwarding the deposit for pre-registration or registration in full, you affirm that you do not have any physical or other limitations that would create a hazard for yourself or other participants or would require adjustments to the tour for other participants.

Itinerary or Tour Modifications

Smithsonian Journeys strives to improve tour itineraries and their features. If improvements can be made, or unforeseen circumstances beyond our control make changes necessary, at our sole discretion, we reserve the right to vary itineraries and to substitute elements of the tour.  These elements include, but are not limited to:  hotels, staff, speakers, experts, and services for any stated in the itinerary.

Every effort will be made to carry out the tour as planned but alterations may still occur after the final itinerary has been sent to you. Please note that weather and other conditions may force changes to the advertised sailing schedule on cruise tours. The ship’s captain has the authority to change the ship’s schedule.

Hotel Accommodations

Smithsonian Journeys chooses hotels based on a combination of location, service, atmosphere, and price. On adventure tours and tours in out-of-the-way places, best-available hotels are used.  Tour prices are based on two persons sharing a room with a bath.

Singles and Roommates

Hotel rooms are always reserved for single participants, however, the number of single rooms available on a tour may be limited. Therefore we recommend that you register early. Please note that a single supplement will most likely apply for a single room.  If you are traveling alone and wish to share a room/cabin, we will do our best to find someone of the same gender and smoking preference to share with you. If you are matched with a non-smoking roommate, it is mutually agreed that you cannot smoke in your hotel room/cabin. When a roommate cannot be found, a single supplement will be charged. Please note that the single rooms in many foreign hotels may be smaller than those to which you are accustomed.

Children

All tours except family journeys, are designed for adults. Some may be suitable for children 16 and older. Regardless of age, children must pay full price unless otherwise noted, moreover, a parent or guardian must accompany those under 18.

Special Travel Arrangements

Participants may wish to extend their stay in the group hotel after the tour. Our tour operators will work with you on these arrangements, dependent upon space availability.  . For participants using air, only post tour extensions are offered. Tour operator may be able to assist land only participants with pre-tour arrangements.

Should you decide not to participate in certain parts of the tour or use certain goods included in the tour, no refunds will be made for those unused parts of the tour or goods.

Dispute Resolution

If a complaint arises, the participant should first inform a member of the on-tour staff, so that the staff can attempt to rectify the matter. If the issue remains unresolved, the individual should submit the complaint in writing to Smithsonian Journeys within 30 days of the completion of the tour.

The Smithsonian Journeys staff will make a good faith effort to resolve any dispute.  In the event that the parties are unable to resolve the dispute, the parties may agree to use a method of non-binding Alternative Dispute Resolution to resolve the dispute.  In the event that the parties are unable to agree on the method of Alternative Dispute Resolution to use, or in the event that either party is dissatisfied with the outcome of that alternative dispute resolution method, such efforts shall not constitute a waiver by either party of the right to file suit.

Photography and Video

Participants on tour may be photographed or recorded (audio and video) for the educational and promotional purposes of the Smithsonian Institution and Smithsonian authorized third parties.  This content may be used in marketing publications and posted on websites to promote Smithsonian Journeys without compensation to the participant. Participants who prefer that their name, voice and/or image not be used must notify us in writing prior to the beginning of the tour.

Smoking Policy

 For the comfort of all participants, we ask that there be no smoking during all group activities, including excursions and meals. On certain cruises, there is no smoking aboard the ship. Your pre-tour bulletins will provide further information.

READ CAREFULLY: RESPONSIBILITY STATEMENT AND LIABILITY DISCLAIMER

Smithsonian Journeys tours are organized and administered by professional tour operators hired as independent contractors. The use of designated tour operators allows the Smithsonian to offer participants a wide array of educational travel opportunities. The tour operator acts only as an agent for the respective suppliers by making arrangements for transportation, accommodations, and other services. Neither the Smithsonian Institution nor the tour operator shall be held liable for personal injury, death, property damage or accident, delay or irregularity arising out of any act or omission of these suppliers. The Smithsonian Institution and the tour operator reserve the right, without penalty, to make changes in the published itinerary whenever, in their judgment, conditions warrant, or if they deem it necessary for the comfort, convenience, or safety of tour participants.

The Smithsonian Institution and its designated tour operator also reserve the right, without penalty, to withdraw the tour announced, to decline to accept any person as a participant in a tour, or to require any participant to withdraw from the tour at any time (including, but not limited for inappropriate, or offensive behavior) when such action is determined by tour staff to be in the best interests of the health, safety or general welfare of the tour group or the individual participant.

Dates, schedules, tour details, and costs, although provided in good faith based on information available at the time of publication on the website, in the brochure or catalog, are subject to change and revision.

AS A CONDITION OF ACCEPTANCE OF ANY APPLICATION, EACH APPLICANT MUST AGREE TO THE STATEMENT SET FORTH BELOW:

The undersigned has read carefully the Responsibility Statement and Liability Disclaimer set forth above, the schedule of activities for this tour, as well as the terms and conditions of application and participation as set forth in the tour materials, and recognizes and accepts any risk associated with the tour and the conditions, including the refund policy, set forth in the tour materials. The undersigned further acknowledges that there are many risks and uncertainties inherent in any travel tour, including but not limited to the hazards of various modes of transportation, forces of nature, acts or omissions of foreign governments, terrorism, war or insurrection, theft, illness, and damage to person or property due to the negligent acts or omissions of tour staff or others. In consideration of, and as part payment for, the right to participate in the tour, the undersigned, on behalf of himself, his dependents, heirs, executors, administrators and assigns, agrees to release the Smithsonian Institution, its Regents, officers, employees, representatives or agents, the United States, and the tour operator and its officers, employees and agents, from liability for personal injury, death, property damage or loss suffered by any person in connection with this tour, even if caused by the negligence (but not the reckless, willful, or fraudulent conduct) of tour staff or other related persons or entities. In addition, by registering for this tour, the applicant certifies that he or she is mentally and physically capable of full participation in this tour. By registering for a Smithsonian Journey, the participant agrees to the Responsibility Statement and Liability Disclaimer and the Terms and Conditions herein.