Istanbul to Cape Town

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Discover ancient treasures and vibrant cultures on this epic 150-day journey through 14 countries. Begin in charming Istanbul, then journey through the Middle East and down to the southern tip of Africa, all the while experiencing the warm hospitality of this amazing region. Delve into the Middle East's rich history with a visit to the classical ruins of Ephesus, be enchanted by the fairytale-like underground cities around Goreme and gaze in awe at the iconic Pyramids at Giza. Head south and spot Africa's legendary wildlife in world-renowned parks, while exploring some of the planet's most breathtaking scenery. This is truly an adventure like no other and the ultimate way to experience the myriad cultures of this remarkable region.

Itinerary

Days 1-2 Istanbul

This fascinating Turkish city is bursting with interesting sights to explore. Visit the mesmerising Blue Mosque or wander the massive Grand Bazaar.

Days 4-5 Selcuk

Uncover history's secrets on a visit to the legendary city of Troy and the majestic ruins of Ephesus.

Day 8 Termessos

Perched on a dramatic precipice of the Toros Mountains, the extraordinary ruins of Termessos are breathtaking to behold.

Days 9-10 Goreme

Be enchanted by remarkable underground cities and fairy chimneys carved out of soft, volcanic rock.

Day 112 Marangu

Travel high onto the slopes of Mt Kilimanjaro and stay overnight amid acres of beautiful, tropical gardens.

Day 150 Cape Town

End the adventure in captivating Cape Town.

Day 3 Gallipoli Peninsula

The stark memorial at Lone Pine is a moving reminder of the many fallen Anzacs.

Days 6-7 Fethiye

Catch some rays on stunning beaches or hike through beautiful hillside olive groves.

Day 11 Bush Camp

Spend a night camping in the bush.

Day 12 Aleppo

Skip across the border into Syria and revel in the lively atmosphere of Aleppo's souq.

Day 13 Palmyra

A powerful city in the time of the Roman Empire, Palmyra is a wonderful archaeological site to explore.

Day 14 Krak des Chevaliers

Enjoy the views from the top of this well-preserved ancient castle.

Days 15-16 Beirut

Boasting colonial architecture and a thriving bar scene, Lebanon's capital is a city of contradictions.

Days 17-19 Damascus

Return to Syria and be sure to sample baklava from the city's charming bazaar.

Day 20 Jerash

Take in Bosra's magnificent amphitheatre, then cross into Jordan and wander the colonnaded streets of ancient Jerash.

Day 21 Dead Sea/Mt Nebo

Float in the salty waters of the Dead Sea and see iconic Mt Nebo.

Days 22-23 Petra

Discover the extraordinary 'lost city' of Petra and admire the monumental buildings carved out of sheer rock face.

Day 24 Wadi Rum

Famously associated with Lawrence of Arabia, Wadi Rum offers breathtaking desert scenery.

Days 25-27 Dahab

Rejuvenate in the balmy waters of the Red Sea, perhaps taking the opportunity to go snorkelling or scuba diving.

Day 28 Mt Sinai

Located at the base of Mt Sinai, St Katherine's Monastery is fabled to hold an offshoot of the biblical Burning Bush. Perhaps climb to the summit of Mt Sinai and camp overnight to catch a spectacular sunrise.

Days 29-31 Cairo

Visit the legendary Sphinx and Pyramids of Giza, explore the sprawling Saqqara cemetery and admire ancient treasures in the Egyptian Museum.

Days 32-37 Western Desert Oasis Route

Experience the magic of travelling through golden, desert landscapes, stopping off to enjoy the hot springs and palm groves at oases.

Days 38-40 Luxor

Journey by donkey to see the ancient hieroglyphs and royal tombs in the Valley of the Kings, then explore the mighty Temples of Karnak with a local expert.

Days 41-44 Aswan

Relax in the beautiful town of Aswan. Why not take an optional trip to see the incredible temples of Abu Simbel?

Days 45-46 Wadi Halfa

Cross Lake Nasser and take in spectacular landscapes on the way to the Sudanese port of Wadi Halfa.

Days 47-52 Nubian Desert

Follow a camel caravan route through rugged terrain. See ruined temples and camp beneath a starry sky.

Days 53-54 Meroe

Gaze at architectural marvels at Meroe - the Kushite temples are the most impressive and well-preserved in Nubia.

Days 55-57 Khartoum

Be sure to catch the famous Sufi Whirling Dervishes achieve religious euphoria.

Days 58-60 Gedaref/Gonder

Visit the fascinating castles and palaces of Gonder in Ethiopia.

Days 61-64 Simien Mountains National Park

Hike through rugged terrain, passing eroded volcanic cores, raging rivers and jagged peaks, and try to glimpse an endangered Simien fox.

Days 65-67 Aksum

Explore this city that is peppered with ancient obelisks, crumbling palaces and a web of underground tombs.

Days 68-69 Mekele

Wander through churches sculpted into cliff faces in Tigray.

Days 70-72 Lalibela

Hidden among the hills of northern Ethiopia, Lalibela is home to monolithic churches hewn from the surrounding rocks. Take a walk through the structures with a local guide to unlock the fascinating history of this area.

Days 73-75 Bahir Dar

Feel the sheet of mist rising from the mighty Blue Nile Falls before boarding a reed boat bound for the monasteries on Lake Tana's islands and isolated peninsulas. The monasteries are famous for their murals and ornately decorated interiors.

Day 76 Dejen

Stop overnight in Dejen.

Days 77-79 Addis Ababa

Head to the bustling capital of Ethiopia and use free time to visit museums and markets.

Day 80 Lake Abiata-Shala National Park

Soak in hot springs surrounded by the twitter of birdlife.

Days 81-83 Bale Mountains National Park

Drive through the park on game-spotting expeditions.

Days 84-85 Shashemene

Learn about the Rasta lifestyle and philosophy at a Rastafarian community school and museum.

Days 86-87 Arba Minch

In free time, why not embark on a boat trip or visit a crocodile farm?

Days 88-91 Omo Valley

Hear about the traditions of local tribes on visits to remote villages.

Days 92-93 Konso

Pick up a souvenir at the local market.

Days 94 -95 Moyale/Marsabit

Travel into Kenya via a surreal, black lunar landscape.

Days 96-97 Samburu National Reserve

Try to spot the Big Five in the reserve. Learn about tribal life from the locals and watch traditional Samburu dancing.

Day 98 Mt Kenya

Spend time exploring the slopes of Mt Kenya.

Days 99-100 Lake Nakuru

Be on the lookout for rhinos and other iconic wildlife feeding around the shores of the flamingo-filled lake.

Day 101 Lake Naivasha

Relax by the lake and watch hippos wallowing on the shore.

Day 102-107 Nairobi

Get to know the busy streets of Kenya's capital.

Day 108 Mto Wa Mbu

Visit a vibrant village market in the small community of Mto Wa Mbu.

Days 109-110 Ngorongoro Crater/Serengeti National Park

Descend to the floor of the Ngorongoro Crater in a 4x4 to seek out lions, zebras and rhinos. Afterwards, head to the Serengeti and safari across the grassy plains of the savanna, home to the Big Five. In the evenings, fall asleep to the sounds of animal calls.

Day 111 Mto Wa Mbu

Soak up the slow pace of village life while visiting farms and a school.

Day 113 Dar es Salaam

Camp on a balmy beach outside Dar es Salaam and enjoy the warm climate of Tanzania's coast.

Days 114-116 Zanzibar

Plunge into the sensuous delights of Zanzibar by exploring historic Stone Town, touring fragrant spice plantations and lounging under coconut palms beside the Indian Ocean.

Day 117 Dar es Salaam

Return to this port city by ferry and spend another night camping on the beach.

Days 118-119 Iringa/Chitimba

Pass through highland towns to reach Malawi.

Days 120-121 Lake Malawi

Chill out on the serene shores of Lake Malawi and spend time chatting to the friendly locals.

Days 122-123 Lilongwe/Nyamapanda

Kick back in a coffee shop in Malawi's capital then cross into Zimbabwe.

Day 124 Harare

Unwind in the gardens, galleries and cafes of Zimbabwe's capital city.

Day 125 Masvingo

Ponder intriguing ancient ruins thought to have once been a palace for the Zimbabwean monarch.

Days 126-127 Bulawayo

Search out rhinos on a walking safari through the Matobo National Park.

Day 128 Hwange National Park

Hop into a 4x4 and safari through this national park for close encounters with elephants.

Days 129-131 Victoria Falls

See torrents of water cascading into a canyon. Thrillseekers can chose from white-water rafting, canoeing or abseiling.

Days 132-133 Chobe National Park

Try to spot swimming elephants, wallowing hippos or sun-loving crocs on a cruise along the Chobe River.

Day 134 Bagani Community Camp

Enter Namibia and embark on boat rides, hikes or fishing trips.

Days 135-136 Okavango Delta

Cruise the delta's reed beds and maze of waterways aboard a mokoro, a traditional dugout canoe.

Days 137-138 Bagani Community Camp/Rundu

Camp surrounded by lush vegetation.

Day 139 Grootfontein/San Bushmen

Meet the San Bushmen and try to pick up their distinct 'clicking' language.

Days 140-141 Etosha National Park

Roam the park's dry plains and encounter zebras, impala and rhinos.

Day 142 Spitzkoppe

Admire stunning geological formations and ancient rock paintings.

Days 143-145 Swakopmund

View thousands of seals basking on the shores of Cape Cross, then relax in the colonial architecture of Swakopmund.

Days 146-147 Sesriem/River Camp

Climb to the top of some of the highest sand dunes on earth in the Namib-Naukluft National Park. Wake early to witness a dramatic sunrise across a sprawling sea of golden sand. Afterwards, meet with a passionate local full of incredible knowledge of the desert.

Day 148 Fish River Canyon

Catch a spectacular sunset over one of the largest canyons in the world.

Day 149 Orange River/Western Cape

Perhaps canoe along the beautiful Orange River.

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