Wine and Fly Tour

Table of Contents

Explore Africa: Wine, The Karoo and Namibia

Welcome to Africa: a continent of adventure, nature, wild animals, great flying opportunities and warm local hospitality. We believe to have created a unique trip combining the Cape Town and Stellenbosch Wine Area, the coastal region and The Karoo with a visit to the Fish River Canyon and Sossusvlei in Namibia.

During this 16-day trip, you will be visiting ten of the top wineries in the Cape and Stellenbosch region, eat at some of the best restaurants in the area and visit the Cape Peninsula Nature Reserve as well as Table Mountain. After spending 4 days in the Cape area, we will fly along Table Mountain, around the Cape of Good Hope in an easterly direction along the coast to Mossel Bay. From there we will fly into The Karoo for a stay at Sneeuberg Nature Reserve. The Karoo is a semi-desert natural region of South Africa. If you have a pilot license, we can help you convert your European or FAA license to a South African pilot license, so you can fly yourselves in a Cessna 172, 182 or 206 during the trip. If you do not have a pilot license, you might be able to join and fly along with one of the pilots on the trip.


One of the waterfalls found along the coast.


Flying over The Karoo (left) and the porch (right) in front of the Kliphuis lodge at Sneeuberg Nature Reserve.

A qualified field guide will come along on this trip to explore African nature and its wildlife together with you. At Sneeuberg Nature Reserve, you will have the opportunity to go on a walking safari with him. The Karoo is a hidden treasure in South Africa and its semi-desert landscapes are just stunning. You will not find the main predators here. A good variety of antelope species can be found in the nature reserve including springbok, eland, red hartebeest and klipspringer. Two types of zebra are found in the area as well: the common Burchell’s zebra and the rare endemic Cape mountain zebra. The localised black wildebeest is a common companion to the zebra as both like to eat the same grass. Groups of baboons can be found around the cottages. There is a bike trail you can follow through the nature reserve on mountain bikes or you can experience nature from the comfortable seat of the game vehicle during a safari drive.


Our means of transportation.

On our way from The Karoo to the world famous Fish River Canyon in Namibia, we will shortly visit the Big Hole near Kimberley as well as the Augrabies Waterfalls, where we will land on the private airstrip of Dundee Lodge to stay there for the night.

North of the Augrabies Waterfalls lies Namibia, where we will stay at the Fish River Lodge sitting right on the edge of the famous Fish River Canyon. We will go on a game drive to explore the second largest canyon in the world. From the Fish River Canyon, we will fly north to Hoodia for a wildlife safari before flying towards Sossusvlei and back towards Cape Town. On our way, we will visit the Ghost Town Kolmanskop near Luderitz and fly along the coast to Oranjemund before we arrive again back in Cape Town.

 
Fish River Canyon.

Itinerary

We offer a 2-week (self-piloting) wine-tasting and safari trip which includes flights through South Africa and Namibia. 

Trip Dates: February 22 – March 10, 2018

The trip starts with a welcome dinner on the 21st and our tour starts on the 22nd of February early in the morning. In case you need to convert your pilot license into a South African pilot license, we advise you to arrive one or two days earlier. Alternatively, you can skip one of the first days of the wine tour to do the conversion and pick up your rental aircraft. The trip ends in the Cape Town area again when we arrive in the afternoon on the 10th of March back at Cape Town International after a flight from Oranjemund, Namibia. In case you have rented an aircraft, you will have to deliver your aircraft back to its owner that day.

The route-map shows you roughly how we will be travelling around with Cape Town as starting point and final destination of the trip.

    February 21, 2018: Arrival in Cape Town

    Our home-base during the first few days will be The Vineyard Hotel.

    Pilot License Conversion Program

    A 1-day pilot programme to get your European or American pilot license converted into a South African pilot license will be offered to European or American pilots wishing to fly themselves on this trip. The conversion program consists of a theory session in the morning with a South African Airlaw exam right before lunch. In the afternoon, you will be doing a check ride together with an instructor to complete the process. You will also have to pick up your rental aircraft somewhere during these days from the aircraft owner. We will be staying in the Cape Town area for several days, so there will be enough time to complete the process, to get your South African pilot license and to pick up your aircraft. 

    Bush Flying

    During this trip, you will have the opportunity as well to fly into unpaved bush airstrips and experience the African continent from above. When we fly from South Africa to Namibia or the other way around, we will have to fly via a port of entry, which usually is one of the larger airports, to clear customs and immigration, so not all the airfields that we visit during the trip will consist of dirt strips in the bush.


    Typical bush plane: the Cessna 206 6-seater.

    The 360 video playback below is supported by the latest versions of browsers such as Chrome, Opera, Firefox installed on your computer. On mobile devices, use the latest version of the YouTube app. It is a short flight from Neusberg Boedery Airfield to Graaff-Reinet to get some fuel over there at the airport. The flight shows you the stunning beauty of The Karoo.

    [arve url=”https://www.youtube.com/embed/rLS7AcfqYKY?rel=0″ maxwidth=”500″ /]

    Safaris and Game Drives

    The safaris and game drives are usually done in open safari jeeps together with qualified rangers/field guides. In other cases, such as in Zimbabwe and in the Okavango Delta in Botswana, we will explore nature and wildlife from a boat or you might get the opportunity to do a walking safari.

    27216125825_da0c58b12a_z16889540927_e05c9a810a_z
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    South African Braai (BBQ)

    In the evenings, we will try to spend as many of our meals together around the campfire. It is around the campfire that friendships are born and flying and wildlife experiences are shared. 


      

    Self-piloting Safari Trip

    You come to Africa to experience stunning views, its wildlife, a different culture and the African way of life. Flying around in Africa is an ideal way to travel. Roads are not always of good quality and it would take you a much longer time to see all the places that we plan to visit if you would travel by road.


    Flying over The Karoo near Middleburg (Cape) in South Africa.

    You will get to see quite a variety of special places in a relatively short time this way such as: the third largest canyon in the world called Blyde Canyon, Kruger National Park and its Big 5, local African culture in Swaziland and Zimbabwe, the famous Okavango Delta in Botswana, the Sossusvlei Sand Dunes in Namibia, the Skeleton Coast, Victoria Falls, the second largest canyon in the world called the Fish River Canyon and, optionally, the Augrabies Falls and The Karoo.


        
    Some of the pictures which were taken on previous flying trips in Africa.

    The Vineyard Hotel

    Our trip together starts on Saturday morning the 21st of April at The Farm Inn. However, if you need to get your European or American pilot license converted to a South African license, we expect you to arrive a few days earlier and at the latest on the 18th of April. After the pilot validation work is done on Thursday and Friday and you have picked up your rental aircraft from the aircraft owner, we will conclude our stay at The Farm Inn with a traditional South African Braai (BBQ) with African dance and music on our last night at this lodge, before we depart early Saturday monrning for our first flight into Africa.


    The Farm Inn urban safari lodge: our stay for the first few days.

    [arve url=”https://www.youtube.com/embed/Zpj6WF3s_lE” mode=”lazyload” title=”Gumboot Dancers at The Farm Inn” maxwidth=”500″ /]

    February 20-21: Pilot License Validation

    We start out to work on the validation of your (foreign) pilot license to convert it into a South African license. 

    2-day Pilot License Validation Program

    During the first day, we will explore with you all the specifics of flying in Africa. We will review the South African (SA) Air Law specific items to be aware of and you will take the SA Air Law theory exam that day as well, get an introduction to basic African survival techniques and learn how to deal with typical tropical issues such as malaria or encountering wild animals in the bush. On the second day, you will be flying with a flight instructor to familiarise yourself with the aircraft you will be renting and flying through Africa. The Skills Test with a South African flight-instructor completes license conversion with the handout of your South African pilot license to you. Next, you will have to pick up your aircraft with the aircraft owner. Some owners want to fly one or two circuits with you before handing over their aircraft to you. At the end of the day, you will have to park your aircraft filled up with fuel and ready to go for the trip.


    Cessna 206 parked at an unpaved strip, being refuelled.

    On the second day, you will be flying with a flight instructor. The Skills Test with a South African flight-instructor completes the license conversion with the handout of your South African pilot license to you. A Skills Test includes the usual air work such as some landings, approach to stall, steep turns, simulated emergency landing as well as a navigation flight in the Johannesburg area. That same day, you will pick up your aircraft from the aircraft owner. Some owners want to fly one or two circuits with you before handing over their aircraft to you. At the end of the day, you will have to park your aircraft filled up with fuel and ready to go on the trip at Lanseria Airport (FALA) as we clear customs/immigration at this airport the next morning for our flight out to Swaziland.

    Non-pilot Activities

    For partners, friends and non-pilots, there will be an opportunity to experience your first safari at the Farm Inn. The Farm Inn is also referred to as an urban safari lodge and they offer a great introduction to African wildlife right at the lodge. Other options for non-pilots are to visit the Karoo Lifestyle Centre nearby for a coffee or to follow one of their creative workshops such as a pottery workshop or one on screen printing with African fabrics.


    Visiting the Karoo Lifestyle Centre.

    Alternatively, you can book a guided half-day city trip visiting interesting landmarks in the Pretoria area such as the ‘Voortrekker Monument” and other historical sites. 

    [arve url=”https://www.youtube.com/embed/GcsFHybv0nQ” mode=”lazyload” title=”Karoo Lifestyle Centre Pretoria” maxwidth=”500″ /]

    Your Aircraft in Africa

     You can choose from renting a Cessna 172, Cessna 182, Cessna 206 or possibly a Piper Archer/Warrior aircraft. All the aircraft are well maintained but basic, so without glass cockpit and most without an autopilot.

    Some of the pictures on this website show us flying either a Cirrus SR22 or a Cessna 210 in Africa. There are no Cirrus aircraft available anymore in South Africa that you can rent for a self-piloting safari trip. The only Cirrus dealer on the African continent stopped renting them out. Renting a Cessna 210 is also not the easiest option due to tight insurance requirements. You will often need to have at least 20 to sometimes even 50 hours on type to be able to fly (= insure) a C210 in Africa. Renting a Cessna 172/182/206 aircraft is a lot easier.

    The Cessna 172 is a good choice if you plan to fly with no more than 2 persons on board plus luggage. The Cessna 182 can facilitate 3 persons on board and some luggage. The Cessna 206 is ideal if you want to fly with four people in the aircraft as it will take the 4 plus their luggage. Flying in Africa often means dealing with high-density altitudes and with higher temperatures.

    Aircraft Rental Options

    We will assist you in renting an aircraft in South Africa. The prices below are indicative for the most common aircraft types available in South Africa. All prices exclude the fuel (= dry-rate) and are based on block times (engine start – engine stop). The fuel price at Lanseria airfield is roughly 1,40 euro per litre at the moment and might be higher or a bit lower at other airfields. At some airfields, we will have to resort to getting AVGAS from fuel barrels, where the price per litre often goes up to around 2,45 euro per litre. Rental prices differ from one aircraft owner to another, but the below table should give you a good indication of what you can expect. Most aircraft owners expect you to fly in average about 1,5 to 2 hours per day during the rental period.

    takeoff-peru-airfield__1468224709_82.95.178.250
    Bush flying: taking off from an unpaved airstrip in Africa.

    [table caption=”Available Aircraft Types (Rentals)” width=”500″ colwidth=”20|200|50″ colalign=”left|left|center|left|right”]
    No,Aircraft,Type,Price (Dry/Euro/hour)
    1,Cessna 172,C172,140.00
    2,Cessna 182,C182,155.00
    3,Cessna 206,C206,215.00
    4,Piper Warrior/Archer,P28A,145.00
    [/table]


    Cessna 210 parked in the bush.

    Pilot License Validation Costs

    [table caption=”South African (SA) Pilot Validation” width=”500″ colwidth=”20|250|50″ colalign=”left|left|right”]
    No,Description,Price (Euro)
    1,License validation costs & paperwork,250.00
    2,South African Air Law theory exam,45.00
    3,Skills test with instructor p/hour,65.00*
    4,Certified copy of last 4 pages of your logbook,**
    5,Certified copy of EASA/FAA license and medical,**
    6,Certified copy of your passport showing picture and passport number,**
    7,Proof of English language proficiency,***
    8,Signed CAA form 61-01-13
    9,Two official colour passport pictures
    [/table]

    * The duration of the skills test is approximately 1 to 1,5 hours of flying time on air work, 1-2 hours for a navigation flight in the Johannesburg area and 1 hour of briefing time, all depending on your previous experience on type and your flying proficiency. You will be briefed about the airspace structure around Johannesburg and specifics of flying in Africa. The skills test price per hour mentioned is for the instructor. You will have to add the aircraft rental and landing fees to that price for the time you fly during the skills test. In case you have no previous PIC hours in the specific aircraft type you want to fly, then it is mandatory to do a short familiarisation training with a South African instructor before you can do the skills test or in some cases a differentiation training.
    ** Certified by your local notary office.
    *** Proof of English language proficiency (LPE) could be stated already on your pilot license.

    ZAMBIA-FUEL-STATION__1467004588_82.95.178.250
    On the apron at the fuel station.

    February 22-25: Wine Tasting Tour

    Our first destination is Nsoko in Swaziland. Swaziland is a kingdom next to Mozambique and South Africa. It is ruled by an absolute monarch Ngwenyama (β€œKing”) Mswati III. We stay the night in a safari lodge near Nsoko, where we will visit several local villages and community projects to get a good local feel of what Africa is all about.


    Swazi dancers.


    Departure from Lanseria near Johannesburg.

     
    Flight from Lanseria into Nsoko, Swaziland.

    [table caption=”Flight Information Lanseria – Nsoko” width=”500″ colwidth=”20|200|100″ colalign=”left|left|right”]
    No,Description,Details
    1,Distance,231 NM
    2,Lanseria Airfield (FALA),3047m x 45m
    3,Manzini Airfield (FDMS),2600m x 45m
    4,Nsoko Airfield (FDNS),800m
    [/table]

    April 23-27: Safari in Kruger National Park

    From Swaziland, we fly to Kruger National Park for our first game drive in search of the Big 5. We will be staying overnight in a tented safari camp on the edge of Kruger Park. The area we are visiting in the Kruger Park is known to be one of the best game viewing parts of the park.


    Arriving at a dirt strip somewhere in Africa.

    Our accommodation consists of tented camps or rondavels where there is a central area where we dine, eat breakfast or can just be together. During the day, we will be going on a game drive in the Kruger National Park with a safari field guide/ranger.

     
    Safari in Kruger National Park.


    BBQ/Braai in the bush.

    At the end of each safari day in the Kruger Park, we will be staying in one of the rest camps or tented camps in the park, where we will eat together and share our experiences of the day.

    The Big 5 consists of the African lion, elephant, buffalo, leopard and rhino. This will be the first game drive in search of the Big 5 and to experience the African wildlife with more opportunities to experience African nature and wild animals further on in the trip. 

     
    Swaziland to Nelspruit near Kruger National Park.

    [table caption=”Flight Information Swaziland – Skukuza” width=”500″ colwidth=”20|200|100″ colalign=”left|left|right”]
    No,Description,Details
    1,Distance,150 NM
    2,Nsoko Airfield (FDNS),800m
    3,Manzini Airfield (FDMS),2600m x 45m
    4,Skukuza Airfield (FASZ),1550m x 30m
    [/table]

    [arve url=”https://www.youtube.com/embed/whrsgUS638A?rel=0″ mode=”lazyload” title=”Landing at a typical Bush airstrip” maxwidth=”500″ /]


    An unpaved airstrip in Africa.

    April 27-May 1st: Lake Kariba and Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

    After an early morning departure from Nelspruit or Skukuza, we will clear customs/immigration out of South Africa at Kruger International for our flight to Chiredzi (Buffalo Range) and Masvingo in Zimbabwe.


    A short detour to the west to have a look at the Blyde Canyon.

    [table caption=”Flight Information Skukuza – Masvingo Airport” width=”500″ colwidth=”20|200|100″ colalign=”left|left|right”]
    No,Description,Details
    1,Distance,346 NM
    2,Skukuza Airfield (FASZ),1550m x 30m
    3,Kruger Int’l (FAKN),2600m x 45m

    4,Chiredzi (Buffalo Range) Airport (FVCZ),1568m x 30m
    4,Masvingo Airport (FVMP),802m x 17m
    [/table]

    Blyde Canyon

    The route starts right after take off from Kruger International and will lead you first for some sightseeing by flying through the Blyde River Canyon before setting course to Zimbabwe.


    The “Three Rondavels” in Blyde Canyon.

    Lake Kariba, Zimbabwe

    Our flights will take us eventually to Lake Kariba with a stay overnight along the way first in Masvingo, Zimbabwe. Next day, we will land at Kariba Airport at around noon in order to go on board of our ship in time for a cruise over Lake Kariba. The lake is surrounded by wildlife as well as quite a lot of animals in the water itself such as large crocodiles and hippos.


    From Kruger area into Zimbabwe.


    From Masvinga to Kariba.

    [table caption=”Masvingo Airfield – Kariba Airport” width=”500″ colwidth=”20|200|100″ colalign=”left|left|right”]
    No,Description,Details
    1,Distance*,241 NM
    2,Masvingo Airport (FVMP),802m x 17m
    3,Kariba Airport (FVKB),1637m x 18m
    [/table]


    Transfer from Kariba harbour to our houseboat.

    One of the Kariba Houseboats. We will be staying overnight on one of these while cruising Lake Kariba. During our stay on the Houseboat, we will visit one of the islands in the lake for a walking safari or visit a local village nearby.



    Pictures were taken at Lake Kariba during previous trips.

    Victoria Falls

    Visiting Victoria Falls is probably one of the highlights of this trip. Flying towards Victoria Falls Airport, you should take the opportunity to circle over the Victoria Falls to take pictures from above. It is exciting to see the waterfalls, however, it is not worth spending a lot of time in town. We will be spending just one night in Victoria Falls in Elephant Hills Resort before continuing our trip towards Botswana.

    VICTORIA-FALLS__1467005102_82.95.178.250
    Flying overhead one of the greatest waterfalls in the world: the Victoria Falls.

    devils-pool
    Devil’s Pool. Swim right up to the edge.

    If you dare, you can take a jump into Devil’s Pool, right at the edge of the waterfall. Here, water levels allowing, tourists are able to safely swim in the Devil’s Pool, under the close supervision of trained guides. The trip is hugely popular, and no-one has ever been swept over the Falls on the official tours.
    bungee-vic-falls 
    Bungee Jump.

    Bungee jumping at Victoria Falls is a drop of 111 m (364 ft) falling almost into the Zambezi River off the historical Victoria Falls bridge situated between Zimbabwe and Zambia.


    Along Lake Kariba towards Victoria Falls.

    [table caption=”Flight Information Bumi Hills – Victoria Falls” width=”500″ colwidth=”20|200|100″ colalign=”left|left|right”]
    No,Description,Details
    1, Distance, 209 NM
    2,Kariba Airport (FVKB),1637m x 18m
    3, Victoria Falls Airport (FVFA),4005m x 71m
    [/table]

    May 1-May 4: Okavango Delta, Botswana

    The Okavango Delta is one of Africa’s last remaining great wildlife habitat and provides refuge to huge concentrations of game. Chief’s Island sits right in the middle of the delta and will be the base for the next few days on our 21-day self-fly safari trip. We will camp on the island instead of staying in one of the luxury safari lodges. This will be an experience you will never forget.

    [arve url=”https://youtu.be/S0462Kw-mEk” mode=”lazyload” title=”Oddballs’ Camp” maxwidth=”500″ /]

    Our flight will take us from Victoria Falls Airport to Maun Airport in Botswana (FBMN). Maun is the bush pilot heaven for rookie pilots coming from all over the world to try their luck here in scoring a job at one of the bush flying operators.

    Africa-Trip-June-2017-93

    Quite a few of the lodges and camps situated in the Okavango Delta can only be reached by air. At Maun Airport we will switch from our ‘own’ planes to the bush flying service of Delta Air. 


    Victoria Falls to Maun, Botswana.

    [table caption=”Flight Information Victoria Falls – Okavango Delta” width=”500″ colwidth=”20|200|100″ colalign=”left|left|right”]
    No,Description,Details
    1, Distance, 178 NM
    2, Maun Airport (FBMN),3690m x 45m
    [/table]

    Delta Air flies with C210/C206 Bush aircraft to the airstrip on Chief’s Island, the only means of transportation into the heart of the Okavango Delta. 

    [arve url=”https://www.youtube.com/embed/s8hFXSVLuwY?rel=0″ mode=”lazyload” title=”Bush Pilots flying into the delta” maxwidth=”500″ /]

    We will stay on Chief’s Island at Oddballs’ Camp. Oddballs’ is situated on the edge of Chief’s Island. Accommodation is in dome tents set on elevated wooden decks and shaded by shelters or trees. Each tent is equipped with bedding, a storage trunk and a light and beautiful outdoor showers.


    Lions in the shade at one of the airfields in the Okavango Delta.

    Activities are conducted by your own professional guide (a maximum of two guests per guide), a man of the swamp, born and bred. Your trail will take you along winding channels lined with reeds in a mokoro (dug-out canoe), into the Moremi Game Reserve, an area renowned for its diverse bird and animal life. It might also be possible to visit his village, meet the elders and perhaps his family. 

    May 4-7: Rundu and Sossusvlei, Namibia

    Delta Air will pick us up from Oddballs’ Camp on Chief’s Island, early in the morning to fly us back to Maun Airport. From there, we will fly with our ‘own’ planes to Rundu in Namibia to clear customs/immigration into Namibia. We will be staying at La Rochelle Lodge before making our way to Kulala Desert Lodge in the famous Sossusvlei area. 


    Maun to Rundu.

    [table caption=”Flight Information Maun – Rundu” width=”500″ colwidth=”20|200|100″ colalign=”left|left|right”]
    No,Description,Details
    1, Distance, 243 NM
    2, Maun Airport (FBMN),3690m x 45m
    3, Rundu (FYRU),895m x 27m
    [/table]


    Rundu to La Rochelle.

    [table caption=”Flight Information Rundu – La Rochelle” width=”500″ colwidth=”20|200|100″ colalign=”left|left|right”]
    No,Description,Details
    1, Distance, 123 NM
    2, Rundu (FYRU),895m x 27m
    3, La Rochelle (FYLR),1550m x 18m
    [/table]


    La Rochelle to Windhoek.

    [table caption=”Flight Information La Rochelle – Windhoek” width=”500″ colwidth=”20|200|100″ colalign=”left|left|right”]
    No,Description,Details
    1, Distance, 222 NM
    2, La Rochelle (FYLR),1550m x 18m
    3, Windhoek/Eros (FYWE),2000m x 30m
    [/table]

    Sossusvlei is a salt and clay pan surrounded by high red dunes, located in the southern part of the Namib Desert.

    Kulala Desert Lodge is situated near the unpaved airfield called “Geluk”. 


      
    Geluk Airfield (FYGK) near the Kulala Desert Lodge.


    Windhoek to Kulala Lodge.

    [table caption=”Flight Information Windhoek – Kulala” width=”500″ colwidth=”20|200|100″ colalign=”left|left|right”]
    No,Description,Details
    1, Distance, 143 NM
    2, Geluk/Kulala (FYGK),1800m x 30m
    [/table]

    May 7-9: Swakopmund and The Skeleton Coast

    Swakopmund is situated on the coast of western Namibia. It is a beach resort founded in 1892 as the main harbour for, at that time, German South West Africa. A small part of its population is still German-speaking today. Attractions in Swakopmund include a Swakopmund Museum, the National Marine Aquarium, a crystal gallery and spectacular sand dunes near Langstrand south of the Swakop River. 

    North of Swakopmund you will find the Skeleton Coast, which was called “The Gates of Hell” by Portuguese sailors. You will find many shipwrecks here along the coastline.

    [table caption=”Flight Information Kulala – Swakopmund” width=”500″ colwidth=”20|200|100″ colalign=”left|left|right”]
    No,Description,Details
    1, Distance, 139 NM
    2, Geluk/Kulala (FYGK),1800m x 30m
    3, Swakopmund (FYSM),881m x 37m
    [/table]


    Kulala to Swakopmund and down towards Luderitz.

     

    We will be staying in the Swakopmund Luxury Suits. The activities offered in town range from Quad Biking to fishing, dune boarding, a dolphin cruise, kayaking or horse riding through the sandy desert. The beach and sea front are just two blocks away.

    May 9-13: The Fish River Canyon

    From Swakopmund, we will fly along the coastline towards Luderitz where we will stay overnight before continuing our flight through the Namibian desert to the famous Fish River Canyon.


    [table caption=”Flight Information Swakopmund – Fish River Canyon” width=”500″ colwidth=”20|200|100″ colalign=”left|left|right”]
    No,Description,Details
    1, Swakopmund to Luderitz (FYLZ), 245 NM
    2, Luderitz to Aus (FYAS),56 NM
    3, Aus to Grande View Lodge Airfield or Hobas, 83 NM
    4, Grande View Lodge Airfield to Keetmanshoop (FYKT), 66 NM
    5, Luderitz (FYLZ), 1202m x 26m
    6, Aus (FYAS),1100m x 10m
    7, Grande View Lodge Airfield, 1000m x 25m
    8, Hobas (FYHS) as alternate, 1000m
    9, Keetmanshoop (FYKT), 2327m x 41m
    [/table]


    Departure from Luderitz on the coast towards the Fish River Canyon.

    May 13: Back to Johannesburg

    For those that have opted for the 3-week trip, they will fly to South Africa, clearing customs/immigration at Upington before flying further towards Johannesburg.

    May 13-15: Augrabies Falls National Park (optional)

    Those that opted to include the Cape and Stellenbosch in the trip, will continue on towards the Augrabies Falls and The Karoo.

    The Khoi people called it “Aukoerebis”, or place of Great Noise, as this powerful flow of water is unleashed from rocky surroundings characterised by the long abyss of the Orange River Gorge. We will clear customs/immigration out of Namibia at Keetmanshoop (FYKT) and enter South Africa via Upington International (FAUP) before flying to Dundi Lodge with its own airfield, Dundi Lodge Augrabies airfield.


    Fish River Canyon via Keetmanshoop and Upington to (optional) Dundi Lodge.


    Augrabies Falls and the Orange River.

    May 15-18: The Karoo (optional)

    We end the extended self-fly safari trip with a visit to the Sneeuberg Nature Reserve in The Karoo. The Karoo is a semi-desert natural region in the southwestern corner of South Africa and just east of Cape Town and Stellenbosch.

    The Karoo used to form an almost impenetrable barrier to the interior of Africa from Cape Town, and early adventurers and explorers denounced this area in the early days as a desolate place. The area has an annual rainfall of between 50-250 mm, but in some of its mountains, it can be higher.

    Situated in the heart of The Karoo, between Graaf-Reinet and Nieu Bethesda lies Sneeuberg Private Nature Reserve, a 14.500 hectare with a variety of antelope species. You will not find the Big 5 here, but lots of animals are around from Baboons, Zebras to Impalas and others.


    Sneeuberg Nature Reserve in The Karoo.

         



    The picture was taken by a participant on one of our trips of the Milky Way at Sneeuberg in The Karoo. Exposure time of the picture was 30 seconds. Experience total darkness and quietness (except for the wind).


    Aircraft parked at Neusberg Boerdery, just west of Middleburg (Cape).


    Augrabies Falls (Dundi Lodge) to Sneeuberg Nature Reserve (The Karoo).

    In the 360 video below, you can get a good view of the scenery of The Karoo. We are parked at a farmers’ airstrip and fly to Graaff-Reinet to get some AVGAS. The video is about 30 minutes, but every valley that we pass has its own panoramic view.


    Not all web browsers support 360 videos.

    May 18: The Karoo to Johannesburg (optional)

    On our final day, we will fly from the Karoo to Welkom Airport for fuel before we fly our last leg to Johannesburg to return the rented aircraft back to their respective owners.


    Flying over The Karoo.

     
    The Karoo to Welkom Airfield, passing Bloemfontein.


    From Welkom Airfield back towards Johannesburg.

    Route Maps

    All route segments are provided in SkyDemon (SD) format. It is strongly advised that you take a tablet or iPad with you during the trip with SkyDemon installed on it. A SkyDemon subscription costs 158 euro for the first year and less the year after. For major airports, we will provide the Jeppesen airport charts.

    Flight Legs – Summary


    [table caption=”Trip Legs” width=”500″ colwidth=”20|200|100″ colalign=”left|left|right”]
    Leg,Description,Details
    1,Johannesburg to Nsoko (FDNS),231 NM
    2,Nsoko to Skukuza (FASZ),150 NM
    3,Skukuza to Masvingo (FVKB),346 NM
    4,Masvingo to Kariba (FVBM),241 NM
    5,Kariba to Victoria Falls Int’l (FVFA),209 NM
    6,Victoria Falls to Maun (FBMN),178 NM
    7,Maun to Rundu (FYRU),243 NM
    8,Rundu to La Rochelle (FYLR),123 NM
    9,La Rochelle to Windhoek/Eros (FYWE),222 NM
    10,Windhoek to Geluk/Kulala (FYGK),143 NM
    11,Geluk/Kulala to Swakopmund (FYSM),139 NM
    12,Swakopmund to Luderitz (FYLZ),245 NM
    13,Luderitz to Fish River Canyon,139 NM
    14,Fish River to Keetmanshoop (FYKT),66 NM
    15,Keetmanshoop to Dundi Lodge,253 NM
    16,Duni Lodge to The Karoo,294 NM
    17,The Karoo to Welkom Airfield (FAWM),235 NM
    18,Welkom Airfield to Johannesburg area,144 NM
    [/table]

    Total distance for the extended trip is just short of 3600 NM and at 108 knots, the total flying time will be around 30 hours. If you opt for the shorter trip excluding Cape Town, you will save about 400 NM and approximately 4 hours in flying time. Your own flying time during this trip depends on the specific aircraft you will be flying, its speed, the winds aloft you will experience during flight and any sidetours you might make.

    Fuel

    We will double check with all the airports for fuel to be available during the whole trip.

    Fuel-7          
    Getting fuel from a barrel.

    At most airfields, the fuel is delivered to your aircraft from a fuel bowser or is made available at a fixed fuel installation. In some places, we will have to rely on fuel coming from barrels, which fuel we will arrange ahead of time.

    africa-fuel-1028x685
    In most cases, you will be able to get AVGAS from the bowser truck.

    We will arrange for the barrels to be at the right place and time and will bring along a manual fuel pump and fuel filter. AVGAS prices range from around 1.45 euro at Lanseria Airport to around 2,45 euro for fuel coming from fuel barrels.

    Meet your Tour Guides

    Sjoerd Jan ter Welle is a Dutch private pilot. He flies the Cirrus SR22T, Seneca 2 or DA42 Twin and a Cessna C210. He owns AeroPlus Aviation and African Flying Adventures and develops software and offers flight-related services and apps for pilots, aircraft/jet operators and flying schools. After flying from Europe to South Africa in 2014 he wrote a book about his flying adventures. He has been going back to Africa. His broad experience in flying through Africa, combined with his skills in flight preparation will help you to enjoy this self-piloting trip while learning along the way. Sjoerd Jan & his wife Saskia will be your tour guides during this trip.

     

    Sjoerd Jan and Saskia ter Welle

    Downloads

    After you will sign up for this trip, we will provide you with a download link to all the briefing packs including pilot logs (plogs), enroute charts and airport information for the airfields we will be visiting during our trip, a trip itinerary as well as our Terms & Conditions in PDF format. A SkyDemon route file is included as well, so if you have SkyDemon running on your tablet/iPad, you can import the route we will be flying already today, right after you sign up.

    Mobile Trip App

    You can also download the Trip Plans app for your smart phone and take the trip with its details along with you on your phone. This app will also be our means of communication during the trip.

         

    After installing the app and signing up, we will provide you with an invite code. The app has a chat feature, which we use during the trip to keep you updated on changes to the itinerary or specifics.

    Trip Price

    In the table below, we have worked out a price example. The Lodging is per person based on room sharing. Other options are available. Our terms and conditions apply to all our service offerings to you.

    The aircraft rental price used in the price calculation example below is based on €195,00 euro/hour wet rate with a total of 30 hours block-time, calculated at an average true airspeed of 110 knots. If you rent a fast aircraft, you will need fewer hours flying, but the price per hour will be a bit higher as well. The concierge service costs cover our costs for organising this trip, the costs of the tour guides coming along on the trip. It is charged per participating aircraft. 

     

    Taxi to/from JNB airport1
    Taxi to/from local airports2
    The Farm Inn Hotel
    Hotels, Lodges and Tented Camps (20 nights, see note)3
    Safaris and game drives4
    Activities at Victoria Falls5
    Delta Air Transport to/from Chief's Island6
    Activities in Swakopmund7
    Cottage/Lodges The Karoo Supplement8
    Augrabies Falls activities9
    Activities in The Karoo10
    Aircraft Rental 11
    Aircraft Rental The Karoo Supplement12
    Skills Test p.p.13
    Air Law Theory Exam
    Paperwork Pilot License p.p.
    Concierge Service14
    Overland Clearance and Landing Permits15
    Handling and Landing Fees16

    22-day Lodging

    7750,00 p.p. sharing
    Taxi to/from JNB airport1
    Taxi to/from local airports2
    The Farm Inn Hotel
    Hotels, Lodges and Tented Camps (20 nights, see note)3
    Safaris and game drives4
    Activities at Victoria Falls5
    Delta Air Transport to/from Chief's Island6 : , US$290,00 p.p.
    Activities in Swakopmund7
    Cottage/Lodges The Karoo Supplement8 : €695,00 p.p. sharing
    Augrabies Falls activities9
    Activities in The Karoo10
    Aircraft Rental 11
     
     
     
     
     
     
     

    Self-fly Cost Estimate

    €7485,00 p. aircraft
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
    Aircraft Rental 11 : €3900,00 / 30-hrs
    Aircraft Rental The Karoo Supplement12 : €975,00 / 5-hrs
    Skills Test p.p.13 : €65,00
    Air Law Theory Exam : €45,00
    Paperwork Pilot License p.p. : €250,00
    Concierge Service14 : €1950,00
    Overland Clearance and Landing Permits15 : €300,00
    Handling and Landing Fees16

    1Excluding all taxi costs from OR Tambo International Airport to the Farm Inn Hotel; approximate one-way taxi price is €40. You can book your taxi ahead of time using the EZ Shuttle taxi service website.
    2Excluding all taxi costs from The Farm Inn Hotel to/from Lanseria Airport (FALA), Wonderboom (FAWB) or Grand Central (FAGC) Airport. Taxis can be arranged from the front desk or through EZ Shuttle.
    3All accommodation and lodges are included from Sunday night the 1st of October up to and including Friday night the 20th of October. At the lodges and tented camps, all meals and drinks are included except for consumption of special wines, whisky and specials. Hotels include breakfast only. The Constantia Lodge in Cape Town only includes breakfast.
    4During the days we stay in lodges or tented camps, the safaris and game drives are included. 
    5At Victoria Falls you are free to go for the activities that you like best which range from just seeing the falls, to bungee jumping off the bridge or jumping into the Devil’s pool to swim to the edge. These activities are not included in the price.
    6We are not allowed to fly into the Delta ourselves, so we leave our aircraft at Maun Airport and switch over to the bush flying service of Delta Air to bring us to Chief’s Island in the Okavango Delta as well as to pick us up from Oddballs’ Camp and fly us back to Maun.
    7There are a lot of activities that can be done right from the hotel where we will be staying which range from whale watching to desert safaris, so each can do what he/she prefers most.
    8The extra week supplement costs cover the lodging, but not the activities in Cape Town or Stellenbosch.
    9The activities at the Augrabies Falls range from just seeing the waterfalls to rafting and are not included.
    10Extra activities can range from visiting Robben Island, going up with a cable car to Table Mountain, visiting the city to cage diving to see sharks and are not included in the price.
    11The visit to the wineries in Stellenbosh is not a mandatory part of this trip. Some might want to stay in Cape Town instead of going out to Stellenbosch.
    12The aircraft rental price in this calculation is based on a rental dry rate of €140,00, €55,00 for fuel/hour and where we calculated the total time based on a ground speed of 110 knots. It is indicative of the price you could expect with 30 hours (block time) that excludes the optional last week to visit the Cape and Stellenbosch.
    13The optional extra week of flying to Cape Town estimate in aircraft and fuel costs.
    14The duration of the skills test is approximately 1-1,5 hours of flying time for air work, 1-2 hours of flying a navigation flight in the Johannesburg area and 1 hour of briefing time, all depending on your previous experience on type and flying proficiency. You will be briefed about the airspace structure around Johannesburg and specifics of flying in Africa. The Skills Test price mentioned is per hour to be paid to the flight instructor. You will have to add the aircraft rental and fuel to that price for the time you fly during the skills test as well as landing fees.
    15This is the fee you pay for us organising this trip as well as coming along as tour guides and is charged per aircraft participating.
    16The required overland clearance and landing permits will all be taken care of by AeroPlus Aviation Software BV.
    17The estimate of the total in handling and landing fees you will have to pay during your 3-week or 4-week trip. In case you opt to go to Cape Town, it might be a bit more. Otherwise, it might be just a bit less.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    [faq group=self-fly-safari]

    [faq group=aircraft-rental]

    [faq group=terms-conditions]

    Yes, I would like to join a Self-fly Safari Trip

    • Reserve your spot

      Sign up using this form and reserve your spot on one of the following ultimate self-fly safari trips we are organising. We will keep your spot reserved for the next 72 hours in order to arrange with you the details before you have to make a firm commitment and an initial down payment to definitely reserve your spot.
    • Please enter a number less than or equal to 15000.
      When renting an aircraft in South Africa, you need to either have experience on the specific type of aircraft you want to fly which needs to be visible from your logbook or it needs to be signed off by an SA flight instructor during a short familiarisation training just before the pilot license validation check ride on the specific aircraft type.
    • Total hours pilot-in-command on type.
    • The October 2017 Self-fly Safari Trip departs from Johannesburg on Wednesday the 4th of October. If you do not yet have a South African pilot license, you should select to arrive on the 1st of October 2017. The April/May 2018 Self-fly Safari Trip departs from Johannesburg on April the 24th. If you do not yet have a South African pilot license, you should select to arrive on the 20th of April 2018.
    • We can do flight following during the trip of your aircraft if you own one of the following satellite trackers. Alternative, you can rent a tracker from us.
    • Please describe your party.
    • Describe any specifics that we need to know such as young children coming along or dietary requirements.
    • Your Contact Details

    • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.