Africa is often left out when people are searching for a luxury destination to escape their everyday lives. However, the African continent has plenty to offer, not just for budget travellers, but also for those who have some cash to spend for the most exclusive travel experiences that are available.
Below are just a few that Carmen’s Luxury Travel has kindly provided for us.
Rovos Rail, Southern Africa
This luxurious train is Africa’s version of the Orient Express. Several itineraries are offered that range from 3-day trips in South Africa, to 15-day journeys that connect Cape Town with Dar es Salaam.
The suites are huge with each having its own bathroom (even the Orient Express doesn’t offer this luxury). There is also an endless supply of amazing food along with a drinks menu that rivals any bar. This includes an impressive wine list containing wines from some of South Africa‘s best estates and vineyards.
However, the highlight of the journey is the open-air terrace that is located on the back part of the train. You can sit there and enjoy the views as you sip from your favourite beverage.
Their service is first class and anything you ask for is instantly taken care of. The train stops on a regular basis for going on excursions and gives you the chance to get some exercise so you can lose some of the weight that you have most likely gained from all the delicious food that you’ve enjoyed while on board.
The entire experience feels like you are going back in time. This feeling is enhanced by the gala dinners that are served on board.
It’s very common for people to go on this trip more than once because it can be addictive.
Bisate Lodge, Rwanda
Whenever people hear the word Rwanda, they immediately think of a dark history. However, those days are gone. Rwanda is rapidly rebuilding itself and luxury brands have rushed to get prime locations secured in such places as Volcanoes National Park. Wilderness Safaris did this with Bisate Lodge.
There are six forest villas that fit in with the surrounding forest perfectly, while at the same time the interior offers you all the extras that can be found at all other world class luxury retreat destinations.
The mountain gorilla trek is the main attraction. It gives you the opportunity to see these endangered and rare species within their natural habitat. Only a few have enjoyed this experience and you will remember it for the rest of your life.
This region is where Dian Fossey conducted her research. She is buried there as well, and her tomb can be visited. It’s located next to her favourite gorilla’s grave.
The lodge also does a lot of habitat restoration, attempting to bring order back to this indigenous rainforest so that a natural recolonisation can occur. This is just one of many places where you can experience and see that Rwanda has turned the page and is moving forward.
Tswalu Kalahari, South Africa
Tswalu is one of the top places to visit in Africa and this reserve really knows how to provide you with a luxury experience. It is South Africa’s largest private game reserve, and it has a very remote location (in the Kalahari’s southern region) so the only way to get there comfortably is by taking a private service.
However, don’t worry about being so remote because Tswalu has its very own fleet of helicopters and aircraft for flying guests in and out as well as over the huge reserve.
There are beautiful rooms that provide you with everything you could ever want or need. One of the main highlights is the game drives and having your own vehicle, trackers, and guide, making it a very personal and unique experience.
There is a 32-guest maximum (divided between 2 properties) so you may not even come across another vehicle.
Tswalu is well known for wildlife that is mostly only common in this region but not in other parts of the continent such as the aardwolf, aardvark, and pangolin. Since the entire project was started to help rehabilitate and protect this Kalahari area, they do all that they can to keep expanding the reserve, introduce more resources for research, and work with National Geographic and many other well-known animal experts.
They also started working with the Michelin star chef Jan Hendrik van der Westhuizen to take the culinary experience there to new levels. This is the place to go if you want to be guaranteed a luxurious and life changing experience.
Royal Mansour, Morocco
One of the most magical places has always been Marrakech, with all its hidden riads, the renowned Jemaa el-Fna square as well as the souks where everyone can get their shopping fix satisfied.
In the middle of all the city’s hustle and bustle, the Royal Mansur is an oasis of tranquillity and luxury. There are 53 individuals “Riads” in the hotel, which are private residences.
They span across 3 floors, with each of them being a masterpiece and fine example of Morocco’s craftsmanship. You’ll be left speechless by all the opulence. Food is a very important aspect of Moroccan culture and there are several restaurants for you to choose from that serve the best international and local dishes.
One of the main reasons that make the Royal Mansour feel like such an oasis is the gardens. They span across 1.5 hectares, and a pool area which is the ideal spot in the summer for escaping the heat.
Another place that must be visited while staying here is the spa. The iron walls feature a Moorish style design which places you in a relaxed state immediately. That is even before getting one of the numerous treatments that is on offer. Finding a place where everything comes together so well is rare and somehow, the Royal Mansour makes this seem very easy.
Ngorongoro Crater Lodge, Tanzania
Ngorongoro Crater would have been where Noah’s Ark would have landed if it had been in Africa. Also, the &Beyond Lodge can be found on the edge of this crater. It provides some incredible views of the remaining parts of this collapsed volcano.
These views are countered by an equally stunning interior. It’s the ideal combination of a grand African palace and a French chateau. Think silverware, chandeliers, and fireplaces. They provide a very impressive service, especially their private butler service, which adds to feeling like you’re living on top of the volcano in your very own castle. The rooms are very opulent, and you can even investigate the crater from the bathroom.
Of course, the reason why you’re visiting is to enjoy some of the finest safari experiences that can be found on the African continent. You won’t be disappointed by the &Beyond Ngorongoro Crater lodge.
Their guides provide great game drives for guests on the crater floor. If your aim is to see wildlife, then consider this place your very own personal Eden. It features a mineral rich floor which attracts numerous game animals since it is covered in nutritious grasses.
Their games drives are a big treat and the lodge’s wine cellar is convenient at night to wash down all the tasty food while talking about your amazing safari experiences and adventures.