Exploring the Red and White Deserts

An unforgettable desert safari travelling from the wide, sandy vistas of Botswana, through the rolling red dunes of Namibia, on to encountering the meerkats of the Kalahari in South Africa then down to explore the Antarctic tundra, surrounded by penguins.

Duration 18 Days
Price From $32,145
When Dec
Destination Bots, Nam, S. Africa, Ant

Safari Overview

An outstanding desert safari discovering the world's very best dunes and tundras and the incredible wildlife that has learnt to survive in these harsh, unrelenting environments. Travel from the red African deserts to Antarctica's white landscapes in search of epic scenery and unique wildlife.

What makes this trip extraordinary?

  • Quad bike across the deserts of the Makgadikgadi Pans
  • Hot air balloon over the towering sand dunes of Sossusvlei
  • Discover the desert-adapted wildlife of the Kalahari
  • Explore the icy white tundra of Antarctica spotting a range of different penguins


Explore the world’s most magnificent deserts, from Namibia to Antarctica.

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Day by day

Days 1-3

Maun - Makgadikgadi Pans

Arrive Maun, Botswana, where you will be met and transferred by light aircraft to the Kalahari then onwards by road into the Makgadikgadi Pans National Park. Here you will stay at the luxurious Jacks Camp where you have the opportunity to explore the stunning surrounding desert, photograph the salt pans and head out on game drives. Learn about the history and anthropology of the area from your local guides and discover the unique wildlife that resides here such as hyenas, meerkats and flamingos.

Overnight: Jack's Camp

Day 4

Jacks Camp - Windhoek

Leave behind the desert of the Makgadikgadi Pans and transfer back to Maun where you will catch your onward flight to Windhoek, Namibia. Namibia is home to some of the world's most renowned and photogenic dunes so prepare yourself for some more memory-making experiences.

Days 5-6

Windhoek - Sossusvlei

Board your light aircraft for your journey to the Sossusvlei dunes. As you fly over this impressive landscape you will take in the scale of the area and the excitement for your upcoming exploration of the area will be visible on your faces as you touch down for your stay at Little Kulala. Your stay here is all inclusive, so enjoy both sumptuous cuisine and exciting activities, allowing you to explore this region in style. Enjoy a sunrise hot air balloon flight over the dunes to experience these vistas from above, set out on game drives through your private entrance to seek out antelope, zebra and desert-adapted reptiles then end the day with sundowners overlooking the nearby mountains.

Overnight: Little Kulala B,L,D

Days 7-9

Sossusvlei - Serra Cafema

From red desert to yellow now, as you transfer from Little Kulala on to Serra Cafema, one of Africa's most remote lodges. Despite being a desert landscape, Serra Cafema is perched on the Kunene River, offering a constant water source for birds and mammals while still remaining peaceful, rustic and secluded. Kunene crocodiles are often seen lounging on the banks, and springbok, ostrich and even leopards can be seen throughout the region. 4x4 drives, quad biking and boat excursions are all optional activities at Serra Cafema giving you plenty of choice to explore. While here, you should also take the opportunity to visit the Ovahimba tribes, learning about their culture and traditions to give you further insight into the area.

Overnight: Serra Cafema B,L,D

Day 10

Serra Cafema - Johannesburg

Say goodbye to this stunning, remote region and travel back to Windhoek to catch your next flight to Johannesburg. Enjoy one night of city civilisation before getting back to nature once again in the Kalahari.

Days 11-14

Johannesburg - Tswalu Kalahari

Fly to Tswalu Kalahari, your South African desert home for the next 4 nights. Set within the largest privately-owned game reserve in the whole of South Africa, Tswalu Kalahari is home to a number of endangered species, from black rhino and black-maned Kalahari lions to aardvarks and pangolins. Enjoy games drives, horse riding and walking safaris to encounter the wildlife here and even spend time with meerkat families up close. There are many activities to keep you entertained while staying here, from luxury sleep-outs to spa treatments as well as specialist talks that can be tailored to your interests.

Overnight: Tswalu Kalahari B,L,D

Day 15

Tswalu - Cape Town

Moving south you will fly down to Cape Town which will be your gateway to your final desert, Antarctica, somewhere dramatically different to the places you have experienced so far. Dine on a luxurious tasting menu at Cape Grace then retire to your rooftop suite to relax before your jam-packed Antarctic adventure tomorrow.

Overnight: Cape Grace D

Day 16

Cape Town - Antarctica

Board your Illuyshin 76 jet for your scenic flight to the Antarctic Peninsula. Your expert pilot will guide you down into the world of ice, penguins and 24 hour daylight for your one day Antarctic extravaganza. Arrive at your remote White Desert guesthouse your base for your flying visit to Antarctica. Choose your selection of activities for the day which will, of course, include looking for Adelie penguins as well as visiting ice grottos, trekking on the tundra and photographing imposing ice features. To top off this once-in-a-lifetime experience you will enjoy a champagne lunch with your fellow travellers before heading out for more Antarctic excursions. After you have squeezed out as much as you possible can from your day in Antarctica you will re-board your flight to South Africa for our overnight journey and the end of your epic desert safari.

Day 17

Cape Town

Arrive back in Cape Town after your flying visit to Antarctica and relax at Cape Grace before you travel home. Enjoy a private bespoke tour of Cape Town before having free time to explore. Wander around the Victoria and Alfred waterfront, dine in the Bascule Bar or simply relax by the rooftop pool.

Overnight: Cape Grace B,L,D

Day 18

Depart Cape Town

Your adventurous desert safari has now come to an end so it's time to make your way back to the airport for your onward flight home.

Trip Details

Dates and Prices

This safari can be tailor-made to meet your specific requirements, however the Antarctica section may need to stick to certain dates.

About Tailor-made Safaris

A tailor-made safaris is one designed specifically for you, around your taste, budget, people travelling, interests and more. This itinerary is just an example and can be refined and changed to make it perfect for you

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Your Next Steps

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