Africa Overland – Johannesburg to Victoria Falls – Episode 670

categories: africa travel

Africa Overland from Johannesburg, South Africa to Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe (Podcast)

In this special episode of Amateur Traveler, I get to introduce to you some of the wonderful people who joined me in Africa last May. We did this trip with Intrepid Travel, taking their “Kruger to Victoria Falls” tour. We drove overland from Johannesburg, South Africa to Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe. We had a small but select group of travelers this year.

All the members of our group arrived a day or too early. The rest of the group spent some time exploring Johannesburg including the incomparable Apartheid Museum, while my wife Joan and I instead spent 3 days in the region of Cape Town.

On the official part of the trip we visited, South Africa, Botswana, and Zimbabwe. Joan and I also visited Zambia for lunch after the trip was over as it is just across the bridge from Victoria Falls. 

This was a camping trip and at least one member of our party was not a camper, but campgrounds in southern Africa are quite comfortable. The facilities are quite clean. We had enough power to keep our electronics charged and we learned to pitch our tents with some skill. 

We started early in the morning from Johannesburg and the first day challenged our mental image of Africa as we visited the Blyde River Canyon Nature Reserve with its deep canyon and surrounding pine forests. We ended the day at Kruger National Park racing to get to the campground before they locked the gates. We did a late-night game drive and an early morning game drive in the park. 

Kruger was where we expected to see wildlife and we were not disappointed. We saw herds of elephants including some baby elephants. We saw cape buffalo, giraffes, warthogs, kudu, waterbuck, gazelle, zebra, lions, hyena, and a leopard. What we didn’t expect that for the rest of our trip we would have random wildlife encounters including a zebra prowling through the campground

In Northern South Africa we visited an Eco-Lodge where the owner is reintroducing native Africa cattle to the local farmers. We also had a village visit where we got a peek into the local life of the people. 

In Botswana, we hiked and clambered up the Moremi Gorge one day and the next day we visited the beautiful Makgadikgadi Salt Pans with its diverse wildlife including a sea of flamingos.

Our trip ended with the spectacular Victoria Falls where we gawked at the waterfall and haggled with the locals. You can buy wonderful crafts with almost any currency that isn’t Zimbabwe’s currency. You may even get an offer for your shoes. 

An overland trip to Africa is a very different view of the continent. You do spend a fair amount of time in a vehicle, but you also get a view of the highlights and normal life in between.

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This episode is sponsored by Find our personal recommendations for which travel credit cards to use.

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Show Notes

Africa Overland – Tour from Johannesburg, South Africa to Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
A Luxury Mobile Safari in Botswana – What to Expect
Amateur Traveler Trip – Africa 2019 – Kruger to Victoria Falls
What to Pack for a Mobile African Safari
South Africa, Botswana Travel Adapter Plug
Outlet Travel Power Strip Surge Protector with 4 Smart USB Charging Ports
1004 Luci Lux Warm Frosted Decor Light
Apartheid Museum
3 Days in Cape Town – A Cape Town Itinerary
Bush Baby
Victoria Falls Airport
My Africa Photos


Erick Smith tells us that the Washington Monument will reopen on September 19, 2019

Elizabeth writes:

I enjoyed your podcasts about Fiji and Vanuatu. I visited these island nations in 1979-80 with my husband and 11-year-old son during a circumnavigation on a 31′ sailboat (for details, see First Voyage by Bruce MacDonald available from I particularly loved learning that in the early 2000s the local culture had largely survived in the outer islands of both countries. In Fiji, our son was carried off to the school by a band of friendly children, while we presented the required gift of kava root to the chief. We also spent time visiting the Banks Islands, where a local man interviewed us on a battery-powered tape recorder.

I wonder if you plan future podcasts to include the effects of climate change in Fiji and the destruction caused by Cyclone Pam in Vanuatu in 2015.

Thanks for the island news!

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Chris Christensen

by Chris Christensen

Chris Christensen is the creator of the Amateur Traveler blog and podcast. He has been a travel creator since 2005 and has won awards including being named the "Best Independent Travel Journalist" by Travel+Leisure Magazine.

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