East African Explorer 21 days
- Our saving
- US $ 1,855
- Travel through small villages to Lusaka
- Visit Chipata and taste colourful fruit, vegetables
- Enjoy a walk to South Luangwa National Park
- Trek up to the Manchewe Falls in Chitimba
- Game driving in search of the biggest wild animals
- Age range
- 18 to 39 year olds
- Hotel, Camping
- Jeep & 4WD, Private Vehicle, Ferry
- Travel style
- Overland truck, Adventure, Safari, Wildlife
- Rather Poor
- RRossCrozierWritten on June 28, 20185.0 - ExcellentNot long back from this tour and I had a great time so I thought I'd let others know. Overall, the tour was well organised and the guides ensured we felt safe at all times. The truck was well equipped and I was surprised at how comfortable the seats were - so comfortable I was able to sleep despite the 'African massages' along the way. Despite the fact that some of the journeys were quite long, being able to sleep certainly helped. Some of the journeys on this trip are quite long but they are unavoidable if you want to see these parts of Africa. Anyway, the route was quite scenic and the guides provided info about the surrounding area along the way and we stopped every so often to stretch our legs. The main guide, Sammy, also informed us when to stock up on snacks and drinks at the better supermarkets as a lot of the local shops were poorly supplied as you can imagine. Most of the stops had some form of toilet however my group found that the bush toilets were generally cleaner (this is Africa after all). The tents provided were pretty good and the mattresses were spot on too. I have to say, one of the things I was anxious about before going on the trip was the quality of the meals as catering for large groups often leads to small portions of massively overdone food but both Sam and Ali were great cooks and we always had plenty to eat. We also stopped at local kitchens to try some of the local cuisine for lunch which was another good experience. Our particular group had lots of allergies/food intolerances (seafood, nuts, dairy, gluten and shellfish to name a few) and Sam always provided options for these people - to the extent that one person had to reject his meals so they could use up some of their own food to create some room in their suitcase. Finally, our guide Sammy was excellent along the way and his local knowledge was invaluable for us between helping getting currency changed to recommending where to buy gifts etc. One of the more negative reviews says to do this trip on your own steam which seems like a very romantic idea but without being able to speak the local language (Sam can speak 8 apparently) and knowing how to deal with the corrupt policemen you will only end up wishing you had someone like Sam guiding you. Bad point(s0: When I was at Lake Malawi the lake was quite rough so snorkelling wasn't going to be worthwhile but I guess it's just one of those things and Acacia can't exactly control the weather Highlights of the trip: South Luangwa - we were fortunate to get VERY close to a pair of lions in heat The Serengeti - seeing The Great Wildebeest Migration was spectacular Would recommend.Show detailed ratingsAcacia Adventure Holidays commented on this reviewDear Ross - it is always a pleasure to receive a review such as yours. Thank you for taking the time to write about your experience and including the details of what to expect on this tour. The East African Explorer 21 day camping trip is certainly a firm favourite and I do believe those memories will last a lifetime. We hope that you'll consider visiting Africa again soon.
- AAnonymousWritten on June 10, 20184.5 - ExcellentLiz has a very hih spiritShow detailed ratings
- SSophiaWilsherWritten on June 9, 20185.0 - ExcellentWe love this trip and would highly recommend to othersShow detailed ratingsAcacia Adventure Holidays commented on this reviewDear Sophia - Thank you for recommending the tour and Acacia Africa. We hope to see you again for another Africa adventure. Kidnest regards, The Acacia Team
- AAnonymousWritten on June 9, 20185.0 - ExcellentWe lived this tour so much and would highly recommend it to anyone!Show detailed ratings
- DDaniWritten on June 8, 20182.5 - AveragePlease read before considering Acacia. I know the discount they are offering seems like a great deal, but it's not. My husband and I are seasoned travelers who have spent time in Africa before this tour. We know the value of a good tour, and we appreciate the 'This is Africa' mantra. The tour we experienced, however, was a massive disappointment. Upon expressing our dissatisfaction with the way we were treated, one of the company's co-founders, Vivian, who is also the head of customer service, reached out to us to tell us that 'overlanding isn't for everyone.' Here is a list of our complaints: 1. Our tour group was sexually and verbally harassed by a patron at our hotel in Zanzibar to the point where we feared our safety. Upon telling Acacia and asking them to work with the hotel to make sure the offending drunk man didn't return, Vivian replied that he doesn't personally know the man who harassed us and that this location has 'high approval ratings, a good facilities, and a great location.' Nothing else was done to help anyone in our group feel at ease. The drunk man returned to threaten us while we were laying on the beach at the hotel. 2. The majority of the optional activities weren't available to us. Because of drastically downplayed travel times in the itinerary, we would show up to our campsite hours after intended, set up our camp and have to go to bed in preparation for another early travel day. This left little time to explore our surroundings. 3. The itinerary was basically a lie. Drive times were sometimes double what was stated. For drives up to 15 hours, you are given one bun to call lunch, with few, if any, stops for additional food for purchase. Bathrooms were rarely available so you will be reliving yourself in a bush on the side of the road. OK, fine, but why not tell us that in advance so we can pack toilet paper and hand sanitizer? 4. The truck lockers leaked and our things got *really* moldy. Vivian simply blamed rainy season and was not willing to provide funds for new pillows. The windows also leaked on us while we drove and the seats were ripped. No A/C also means it's hot and smelly when you can't put the windows down due to rain. 5. Our tour leader did not provide us with any valuable information. He told us at our welcome meeting that he didn't like to talk so we'd have to ask questions if we wanted to know anything. Then he scolded anyone for asking questions. This made for a long 3 weeks with no one telling us what we were looking at. 6. The vegetarian lunch options sometimes consisted of moldy bread, shredded carrots, and cheese. When someone in our group was served something that she had stated many times she was allergic to, she had a severe reaction and Vivian's exact reply to her was, 'choices were very limited.' No apology. Overall, I would NOT recommend Acacia Africa for any tour, due to their lack of empathy for their customers and the subpar quality of their equipment and tour. You are much better off planning your own itinerary, buying a tent and renting a car (or even flying and staying in hotels!). You will save a TON of money and have a much better experience, as you will actually get to explore the places you visit rather than just sleep there and get right back on the road.Show detailed ratingsAcacia Adventure Holidays commented on this reviewDani and her partner /husband are bloggers who travelled on our 21-day East African Explorer, which departed Livingstone on 30 March. In return for providing images and social media content they received a generous discount off the tour price. Unfortunately they did not enjoy the trip and emailed a complaint shortly after finishing. We investigated what they said and emailed them a reply. I then spoke to them on a Skype call, in a friendly conversation that lasted over an hour. Most of what follows is drawn from my email reply sent to them or from the Skype conversation. Dani mentions an incident at the hotel in Zanzibar where a local man attached himself to the group and wouldn’t leave when asked. She says it was a case of sexual harassment but that is not how we understood it and not how the female passenger involved described it. She told us the man asked her out for a drink and then became offensive and rude to other members of the group when she refused. Eventually he did leave. Nothing sexual was alleged and the police were not called. The man was not a staff member at the hotel and not known to Acacia. The property was our regular hotel, superbly located just off the beach at Kendwa. I don’t wish to minimize what happened but Acacia has groups on Zanzibar regularly and frequently (5 groups in the time since Dani’s trip plus a 6th group due next week): incidents are very rare. Most people love being on the island and Zanzibar is a real highlight. Dani writes the tour itinerary is ‘basically a lie’ and refers to long driving times. In fact her tour stayed at the regular scheduled campsites each night and all major highlights were seen or visited. It is therefore not correct to make such an allegation. What is correct to say is that some of the driving days were longer than estimated because of the wet weather experienced and there were several incidents of flooding. Estimated driving times are calculated from previous season’s averages and are as accurate as we can make them but they are subject to change and Acacia drivers are instructed to drive to the conditions, in particular when it’s wet: they drive more slowly. Needless to say anyone hiring their own vehicle will have been affected the same way, possibly more so if they were not experienced driving in such conditions. Dani mentions water leaking into the truck, pillows getting mouldy, and no air-conditioning. Air conditioning is not something we provide on overland tours but leaking can occasionally occur if the rain is persistent enough (it’s due to the vehicle chassis twisting on the poor roads) and I regret anyone’s belongings getting wet. Drivers made running repairs and that is what Dani’s driver did when he was alerted to the problem. Dani says the tour leader did not give sufficient information each day. The tour leader (whose name was Philile) on this tour was an experienced crew member but I said to Dani we would talk to Philile so he knew what had been fed back. It was good to have her view and Philile said he would try harder. I did point out to her that her fellow group members had given both Philile leader and his driver (Khumbu) positive reviews on the feedback questionnaires. It was also positive for meals but it’s true - vegetarian options can be limited in some areas of Africa. The situation has (however) improved greatly over recent years and it quite normal nowadays for us to have clients with various dietary requirements (vegetarians, gluten-free, vegan etc) on tour. The allergic incident she mentions was an isolated matter. Flooding in the Serengeti caused considerable delay and the group was temporarily accommodated at a private lodge and a meal arranged at short notice. The message regarding the allergy was not properly understood but fortunately the items were spotted in time and no harm resulted. (I should add that staying at the lodge that evening meant our group could relax in relative comfort in the lounge while the flood waters subsided; it was far more comfortable than other companies’ clients that evening who were stuck in their vehicles all night.) Dani believes you are better to not to do a tour. She suggests hiring your own vehicle or flying to each country and ‘doing it yourself’. She is entitled to her view but I think she is wrong – at least in Africa where most of the highlights are outside the cities, sometimes in remote areas. To me, overlanding is unbeatable. It gives group members, many of whom book and travel from their home country alone, the means of travelling through areas they would never see any other way. Driving a hired vehicle from Zambia through Malawi and Tanzania to Kenya is not as simple as it might sound, and indeed can be a challenging experience even for experienced travellers. Flying from country to country is possible but is expensive and you still need ground transport when you arrive. Far easier is to join an overland group which will carry you in one main vehicle throughout, help manage the culture shock, deal with border crossings and local officialdom, and take you through some very remote areas (often with little or no phone signal) to some of the best gameparks in the world. Many of our clients have never camped before and almost all are new to Africa, and even experienced travellers often treat Africa differently because of the lack of local infrastructure in rural areas. For some clients, overlanding is a one-off experience, for others it is the first of many such trips and they return to Africa repeatedly. The East African Explorer is one of our most popular trips because it passes through a range of landscapes, cultures and peoples and visits 3 of the best game-reserves in Africa – the South Luangwa, the Serengeti and the Ngorongoro Crater (Dani’s group reported some really wonderful game-viewing). Like many overland tours the trip covers a lot of ground and conditions can be difficult at times but one point must be borne in mind: if travel is difficult for your Acacia driver and vehicle, it will be doubly difficult for someone driving his /her own vehicle (or a hired one) along the same routes. In finishing I want to emphasise what I stressed to Dani and her partner when I spoke to them. It is that we welcome client comment and feedback, and genuinely appreciate anyone taking the time to write to us following his/her tour. Positive comments are received with thanks; criticisms are taken more seriously and read by myself and senior colleagues. They are investigated and a reply sent once investigation is completed. Information received about a particular area is used to benefit future groups; and notes are made so itineraries and tour dossiers can be updated periodically. This is a continual process; Africa is always changing and overlanding is a dynamic business. It is our task to stay ahead of the changes: client feedback helps us do that. Vivian McCarthy, Director
- AAnonymousWritten on June 8, 20185.0 - ExcellentWe travelled around the world for a year and Africa was certainly a highlight. Liz and the team at Acacia were awesome. We hope to be back sometime soon. Thanks for all the memories.Show detailed ratings
- LeandraWritten on June 3, 20185.0 - ExcellentAwesome countries, beautiful nature and fantastic people! Thanks to acacia, thanks to sammy which made everything perfect!Show detailed ratings
- SSamanthaBrehenyWritten on June 3, 20184.5 - ExcellentThe Tour was amazing! I’ve been on many overseas trips and nothing can compare to my experience with Sammy and acacia in Africa!Show detailed ratings
- AAnonymousWritten on June 3, 20185.0 - ExcellentSammy was the absolutely best tour guide I have ever had. His knowledge of his continent was remarkable. Would absolutely recommend this trip and Sammy to everyone! We would do the same trip over again in a heartbeat!Show detailed ratings
- JakeWritten on June 3, 20184.5 - ExcellentSammy was a very knowledgeable and easy going guide. Couldnt of been any happier with our tour.Show detailed ratings
ItineraryDownload PDF Brochure
- Day 1: Livingstone to Lusaka
- Day 2: Lusaka to South Luangwa National Park
- Day 3: Luangwa National Park
- Day 4: South Luangwa National Park - Kande Beach
- Day 5: Kande Beach
- Day 6: Kande Beach - Chitimba
- Day 7: Chitimba Beach
- Day 8: Chitimba Beach to Iringa, Tanzania
- Day 9: Iringa- Mikumi National Park area
- Day 10: Mikumi to Dar es Salaam
- Day 11: Zanzibar
- Day 12 - 14: Zanzibar
- Day 15: Kendwa - Dar es Salaam
- Day 16: Dar es Salaam - Marangu
- Day 17: Marangu - Arusha
- Day 18: Arusha to Serengeti National Park
- Day 19: Serengeti National Park to Ngrongoro Crater
- Day 20: Ngorongoro Crater to Arusha
- Day 21: Arusha to Nairobi, Kenya
AccommodationRated Excellent by past passengers
GuideRated Excellent by past passengers
MealsRated Excellent by past passengers
TransportRated Excellent by past passengers
- Acacia Adventure Holidays
- Experience Africa
- TRUCK LIFE IS SWEETER WITH ACACIA AFRICA
- This is Malawi
Questions & Answers
Here we have collected and answered the most frequently asked questions about this tour.
Does this tour allow travelers over the age of 40 join the tour?
Acacia Africa specifically markets their tours to 18-39 year olds exclusively as they encourage backpackers and young travellers. This is simply so that first time travellers or other young people can be comfortable that they will be travelling with people their own age only.
What is the Adventure Pass?
Every Overland tour has an Adventure Pass which is paid to your tour leader in Africa at the beginning of the tour (or pre-paid by arrangement prior to your tour). This is separate and in addition to the Tour Price, and covers selected park entries, activities and excursions along the way where payment goes directly to the supplier to ensure local suppliers benefit directly from the income.
What are people saying about TourRadar?
- Shereen22nd June 2018
East African Explorer 21 days
- Upcoming departures
- October 2018
- November 2018
- December 2018
- January 2019
- February 2019
- March 2019
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- December 2019
- FridayOct 26, 2018from Livingstone21 DaysThursdayNov 15, 2018to Nairobi10+ seats left$535$2,390-22%USD $1,855+ $1,050 Prepaid Pass
- FridayNov 9, 2018from Livingstone21 DaysThursdayNov 29, 2018to Nairobi10+ seats left$535$2,390-22%USD $1,855+ $1,050 Prepaid Pass
- FridayNov 23, 2018from Livingstone21 DaysThursdayDec 13, 2018to Nairobi10+ seats left$72USD $2,318+ $1,050 Prepaid Pass
- FridayDec 7, 2018from Livingstone21 DaysThursdayDec 27, 2018to Nairobi10+ seats left$72USD $2,318+ $1,050 Prepaid Pass
- FridayDec 21, 2018from Livingstone21 DaysThursdayJan 10, 2019to Nairobi10+ seats left$535$2,390-22%USD $1,855+ $1,050 Prepaid Pass
- FridayJan 4, 2019from Livingstone21 DaysThursdayJan 24, 2019to Nairobi10+ seats left$419$2,390-18%USD $1,971+ $1,050 Prepaid Pass
- FridayJan 18, 2019from Livingstone21 DaysThursdayFeb 7, 2019to Nairobi10+ seats left$419$2,390-18%USD $1,971+ $1,050 Prepaid Pass
- FridayFeb 1, 2019from Livingstone21 DaysThursdayFeb 21, 2019to Nairobi10+ seats left$419$2,390-18%USD $1,971+ $1,050 Prepaid Pass
- FridayFeb 15, 2019from Livingstone21 DaysThursdayMar 7, 2019to Nairobi10+ seats left$419$2,390-18%USD $1,971+ $1,050 Prepaid Pass
- FridayMar 1, 2019from Livingstone21 DaysThursdayMar 21, 2019to Nairobi10+ seats left$419$2,390-18%USD $1,971+ $1,050 Prepaid Pass
Monthly price comparison
About the countries
- KwachaZambia and Malawi
- ShillingTanzania and Kenya
Plugs & Adapters
- Recommended for Zambia, Malawi, Tanzania and Kenya. Ideally 2 weeks before travel.
- Hepatitis A
- Recommended for Zambia, Malawi, Tanzania and Kenya. Ideally 2 weeks before travel.
- Recommended for Zambia, Malawi, Tanzania and Kenya. Ideally 2 weeks before travel.
- Recommended for Zambia, Malawi, Tanzania and Kenya. Ideally 3 months before travel.
- Hepatitis B
- Recommended for Zambia, Malawi, Tanzania and Kenya. Ideally 2 months before travel.
- Recommended for Zambia, Malawi, Tanzania and Kenya. Ideally 1 month before travel.
- Meningococcal meningitis
- Recommended for Zambia, Tanzania and Kenya. Ideally 3 weeks before travel.
- Yellow fever
- Certificate of vaccination required if arriving from an area with a risk of yellow fever transmission for Malawi. Recommended for Kenya. Ideally 10 days before travel.
- Livingstone is the starting point and Nairobi is the endpoint.
- Max group size
- 24 is the maximum group size for East African Explorer 21 days.
- Hold my space
- TourRadar can request Acacia Adventure Holidays to hold spaces for you for up to 48 hours without any credit card details.
- TourRadar only requires a deposit of $300 to confirm this Acacia Adventure Holidays booking. The remaining balance is then payable 56 days prior to the departure date. For any tour departing before 15 December 2018 the full payment of $1,855 is necessary.
- Cancellation policy
- No additional cancellation fees! You can cancel the tour up to 56 days prior to the departure date and you will not need to pay the full amount of $1855 for East African Explorer 21 days, but the deposit of $300 is non-refundable.
- Credit Cards
- The following cards are accepted for Acacia Adventure Holidays tours: Visa - Master Card - American Express
- Livingstone (Zambia)
- 339 km
- Kafue (Zambia)
- 45 km
- Lusaka (Zambia)
- 511 km
- Chipata (Zambia)
- 373 km
- Livingstonia (Malawi)
- 9 km
- Chitimba (Malawi)
- 357 km
- Iringa (Tanzania)
- 209 km
- Mikumi National Park (Tanzania)
- 195 km
- Dar es Salaam (Tanzania)
- 71 km
- Zanzibar (Tanzania)
Why book with TourRadar
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- If you book with TourRadar and within 24 hours you find a better price than $1,855 for the same tour, TourRadar will pay you the difference
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- No Cancellation Fee
- TourRadar does not charge any additional cancellation fees. You can cancel the tour up to 56 days prior to the departure date.
- 13 Genuine Reviews
- All reviews are verified from travellers who went on East African Explorer 21 days