Category Archives: Featured

Take a Hot-Air Balloon While on Safari

Maddison flies over the Masai Mara!

IT’S 5AM at the Sarova Mara Game Camp.  We meet in the lobby to walk down to our safari vehicles, together and escorted by a guard because it is still dark.  Everyone is cold and sleepy from the early wake-up call, yet excited for what is to come.  We drive about 15-20 mins before arriving at our designated take-off area.  We all hop out of the vehicles and see shiny multi-coloured fabric spread along the ground.  The sun’s rays slowly lighten the eastern horizon and the balloon is loudly inflated by the crew, rising to become a glowing jewel.


It is now time for us to hop in.  We are asked one at a time to slide into the basket, while it is on its side.  We all squish in together and are told to hold on to the handles inside while the basket is slowly lifted.  


We stay seated in the basket while the balloon takes off.  This takes just a few minutes.  Soon enough we the basket is in the air and we are allowed to stand.  The view is breathtaking!  Nothing but plains surround us: they stretch as far as the eye can see.  Our pilot guides the balloon over herds of zebra and wildebeest.  They begin to run as the balloon glides lower.  There are so many that I don’t have time to count as we pass overhead.  As we continue our journey, we spot warthog and giraffe by the Mara River.  The sky is a beautiful streakiness of pinks and oranges as the sun itself peeks over the horizon.


We all take time to photograph what we see, but the images we view later just don’t do it justice. Too soon, it is time to begin our descent.  We are told to sit and hold on again while the balloon lands.  Once it lands, a solid but not scary bump-and-grind along the dirt, we slide out and are greeted by friendly staff holding out flutes of champagne, presenting us with a gourmet breakfast in the middle of the bush.



As we tuck into the selection of pastries, meats and cheeses, a herd of zebra surround us!  We mute our voices, and they stand watching us, chewing their grass, waiting, it seems, for some throwaway morsels…  It is the perfect ending to an unforgettable morning!  It was an exhilarating experience I will cherish forever!


If you’ve been on a hot-air balloon in Africa, we’d love you to share your experience! Where were you? And what was your favourite moment?

 If you’d like more information, email

Luxury Rail Journey in South Africa

Travel between Cape Town & Pretoria in Style!

Take the Blue Train


3 days/2 nts – Save $$$ when you travel with a friend

The Blue Train traverses South Africa and its breath-taking scenery in a manner that befits its royal mystique.  See the spectacular and diverse landscape unfold in front of your eyes, enjoy off-board excursions to discover a gold-mining heritage, and delight in excellent personal service with fine dining which showcases South Africa’s bountiful produce and quality wines.  All-inclusive, this special deal makes it even more attractive when you compare it to the cost of airline flights, taxes, accommodation, transfers & waiting time…

Book during December 2019 for all May, June, July 2020 departures & the second person travels for only 50%.

That’s a saving of between $1000-1300 per booking, depending on the class of cabin you choose, Deluxe or Luxury.
Rush in & book now before all the suites are taken!

Call us on 1800 808 491 or email


Flash Sale – Buy one tour, get one free!



For the short sale period of 1-15 Nov 2019,
buy our Nomad Adventures 20-day Cape Town to Victoria Falls overland tour to travel Jan-Jun 2020, & you can choose a free 5-day extension tour
a) Journey to Kruger; or
b) Best of Zimbabwe,
absolutely free! 


Travellers on all northbound camping or budget-accommodated tours from Cape Town to Victoria Falls are eligible for the free 5-day tour addon, subject to availability.

Click here for itinerary details  Cape to Vic
and also the free  connectiong options, either Journey to Johannesburg + Kruger Big-5
.                                        or           Best of Zimbabwe
Ask us for Jan-Jun 2020 dates.


If you miss the sale above, don’t despair, remember that ALL Nomad camping and budget-accommodated tours running Jan-Jun will be discounted by 10% if you book & deposit by 30Nov19!
Just quote Nomad Early Bird when you call to enquire!

Phone us … 1800 808 491


Nomad Africa Adventures Flash Sale for Singles!

Book any Nomad Africa Adventure tour departing 01 Jan -30 Jun 2020 & receive your single supplement FREE!
From South Africa to Zanzibar to the gorillas in Uganda, Nomad operates overland tours for between 4 & 20 passengers using a fleet of purpose-built 4WD trucks, each with at least 2 trained guides.

Immerse yourself in the African experience for a fraction of the price of the 5-star lodges…
with no extra cost to have a single room!  Nada!  What a bonus!
This offer expires 4th October 2019, so call us, or your local travel agent, ASAP.
Singles limited as usual to 2 per tour. T’s & C’s apply.


This could be YOUR journey of a lifetime!  Book it now!

You can phone us on1800 808 491   or email

Nomad Adventure Safari Offer

Nomad Adventures Flash Sale

Get a free night on us!

Book a seat on the South African Explorer adventure overland and get one night’s free accommodation
either before or after your tour, either at Belvedere Estate in Midrand (Johannesburg) or
at 40 on Burg in the heart of Cape Town.

Book between now and September 5th 2019, to travel on any all-inclusive South African Explorer
tour departing Jan-Apr 2020, north or south, camping or accommodated, to get your free night!


Click here to see the new South Africa Explorer itinerary for 2020.
Call or email to make your booking!



Don’t miss the chance to see the spectacle of wildflowers in the Western Cape region of South Africa!

There are two mini-Wildflower tours scheduled to depart in August that have half-a-dozen seats available on each, which we’ve combined with a city stay in Cape Town to create this 9-day Cape & Wildflowers package.  Add a safari, a Blue Train journey, and/or a Victoria Falls extension for the perfect Winter escape!

Ask our friendly consultants for more details by calling 1800 808 491 or emailing


Take advantage of Swagman’s already low holiday airfares to create a top-value AFRICA TOUR PACKAGE with selected overland tours reduced by up to 20% off retail cost.

April Safari Deal  

Listed below are tours on which some clients have already booked, but sometimes the operators want to encourage a few more to travel, to allay the expenses of running the tour – fuel & staff, but also to make the tour more fun!  Combine the discount with some change in exchange rates and, if you can travel at short notice, you might find there is an opportunity too good to pass by…  Contact us for your next adventure!

TypeTour NameDeparture DateDiscount
AccommodatedCape Town to Victoria Falls – North22-Nov-1810%
Accommodated (small-group, lux vehicle)Cape Town to Victoria Falls25-Nov-1810%
Camping or AccommodatedVictoria Falls to Cape Town – South27-Nov-1820%
Camping or AccommodatedOkavango & Chobe Trail – North13-Dec-1810%
Camping or AccommodatedSouth African Explorer – South18-Dec-1810%
AccommodatedKruger Big-521-Dec-1820%
Camping or AccommodatedCape Town to Victoria Falls – North27-Dec-1820%
Camping or AccommodatedSouth African Explorer – North28-Dec-1820%
Camping or AccommodatedKruger Big-528-Dec-1820%
Camping or Accommodated (small-group, lux vehicle)Namibian Explorer30-Dec-1815%



Take advantage of the May Safari Deal and stay at Elephant Valley Lodge!  Book during the month of May to save!

Elephant Valley Lodge is surrounded by the peaceful wilderness of the African bush.  It lies in a unique position overlooking the Lesoma Valley in the Chobe District, home to the largest population of African elephant in the world.  The animals and birds move freely in the valley between the game-rich conservation areas of the neighbouring Chobe Game Reserve and the National Parks of Zimbabwe. From the comfort and tranquillity of the Lodge you can watch creatures great and small, dropping by for a thirst quenching drink at the Lodge’s waterhole.

Stay in Forest or Valley tented suite accommodation, with all meals, select local drinks, soft drinks and waters, bed levies, park entrance fees, transfers to and from Kasane Airport* and two daily safari activities (morning boat cruise and afternoon game drive).

3-night package currently $2330pp twin share
May Safari Deal – pay only $1575pp**

Exclusive to all who book through Swagman during May 2018

*Transfers only for guests arriving or departing with scheduled flights only ** Nov-Dec 2018. Excludes Premium drinks, champagne, items of a personal nature & transfer for private charters. Rates for children & other dates available on request.