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Cape Town to Cape Town - Wonderous Wildlife - 14 Day


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My Wife and I are booked on the Marina Feb 26, 2022 from Rio to Miami.  But, 8 or 9 days the Marina goes up the Amazon River.  We were really looking forward to the wildlife and the Brazilian Rain Forest, but, now, reading a few reviews, it seems like that doesn't really happen on the Cruise.  The Amazon River is so large, the ship stays near the middle of the River and you don't see the land along the River very well.  And, the Rain Forest doesn't really begin until after the city of Manaus.  So, maybe, this cruise isn't for us.  We still have plenty of time to do our own research.

 

But, now we're looking at this Cruise - Cape Town to Cape Town - Jan 11, 2022.

 

It leaves Cape Town, then to Walvis bay, Namibia, Port Elizabeth, Durban, Maputo, Mozambique, Richards Bay, Mossel Bay and back to Cape Town.

 

Has anybody been on this Cruise or a similar one ?  My Wife and I are interested in Wildlife and Safaris.  Would we be seeing much Wildlife on this Cruise ?  How about the Nautica Ship ?  Similar to the Marina ?  We enjoyed the Marina a few years ago.  We like Aft Balconies and Deck 6, 7 and 8 each have 2 Aft Balconies.  Does anybody have any info on those rooms and their Balconies ?

 

Anyway, any information would be greatly appreciated.

 

Thank You in Advance,

Dave & Leona Vicencio

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Nautica is a lovely ship but quite unlike Marina. Much smaller, less specialties and more intimate. We were on her for 30 days, Dubai to Cape Town.

Unless you do pre or post stays or overnight excursions, chances are you are not going to see a lot of wildlife on this itinerary. When day excursions are offered you would get to any wildlife reserve well after prime viewing times. Yes you will see giraffe, many more ungulates and maybe a few big cats. We did our own day excursions to private reserves from Richards Bay (Hluhluwe Imfolozi Game Reserve) and Durban (Tala), specifically to see white rhino. Having been to Maputo once, I would not waste my money again for the visa. Cape Town is stunningly beautiful and lots to do there include great restauants and access to many vineyards.

The seas around Cape Town can be very rough. It took Captain Melnikov at least three passes before we were able to dock in 2017. Others have reported missing ports due to weather at this part of the world.

Do post if you have specific questions.

Edited by Queen of DaNile
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I second the notion of planning a pre or post cruise trip to one or several game reserves if you want to see wildlife - choices are endless.

Otherwise it is a nice itinerary but compare with land trips visiting multiple sites (Namibia, Victoria Falls, Chobe, Kruger Natl. park, etc

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We’ve been on the Nautica multiple times and don’t mind she’s being smaller ship at all. We actually like it that way more intimate and less crowded.

 

As others already mentioned, you’ll need to go on the overnight safari to maximise your chances of viewing the wildlife. On our South Africa itinerary we arranged an overnight safari with Thanda Private Game Reserve by contacting them directly. They picked up the two of us in Durban and returned to the ship in Richards Bay. The cost was half the price Oceania was charging for the same overnight excursion at that time. We had to get a permission in advance to return to the ship in the different port. We were able to see all of the Big Fives and a lot of the other wildlife. It was an amazing experience that we wouldn’t forget.

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We did a cruise on NAUTICA from Dec. 5, 2019 to Jan. 6, 2020 from Dubai to Cape Town.  We enjoyed Nautica but we loved Marina because of the variety of specialty restaurants and the beautiful stateroom bathrooms.  The Nautical only has two specialty and the food on the Nautica, in general, was not as good as on the Marina.n. Obviously, food is subjective, but this is our opinion. In Richards Bay, we used Wild Routes Safaris and they were great to work with.  It was about a 90 minute ride from the ship to the HlueHluewe Game Reserve so we arrived around 11:30 am. We saw 4 of the big 5 plus many more animals.  We were perfectly satisfied with our experience on and off the ship.

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We did Capetown to Singapore that stopped at many of the ports you cited on Nautica, Was an amazing trip and we think Nautica is the best run of any of the R ships.

 

However you are flying all of that way and not stopping at Kruger??  My suggestion is to do a pre trip to Kruger (3 nights minimum) at one of the Game reserves either North or South.  We did 6 days (3 in the North and 3 in the south), then fly from Kruger to Capetown to catch your cruise.

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Several years ago we did the Capetown to Rio cruise.  It included most of the ports you mentioned and then stopped on St. Helena on the way to Rio.  It was the best Oceania cruise we ever were on.  Rather than taking the ship’s “safari” we booked our own pre-cruise.  We used African Travel and they arranged for a five day trip to Chope and Victoria Falls for less than the ship’s three day trip including the RT air from Capetown to Johannesburg.  They will work with your budget to get you your trip of a lifetime.  The only problem is once you have been to Africa you want to return.

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The most physically taxing thing you will do on your trip will be the flight to South Africa and back.  We are booked on the Rio to Miami trip in 2022.  We also went on the Cape Town to Singapore cruise at the beginning of this year (though the ship diverted to Dubai).  We originally wanted to see Victoria Falls, Kruger National Park before going on the cruise, but we find out the water is kind of low in January.  So, we ended up visiting Johannesburg, Kruger National Park, Sabi Sands, Victoria Falls, and Chobe National Park in Botswant in May/June 2019.  Our favorite had to be Sabi Sands though everything was good.  If you do the Cape Town cruise, you have to spend a few days in Cape Town, one of the great port cities, up there with Sydney, Barcelona, and Rio.  You have to go wine tasting in Stellenbosch.  South Africa would be a much more interesting and fun vacation than the Amazon cruise.  

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9 hours ago, deadzone1003 said:

The most physically taxing thing you will do on your trip will be the flight to South Africa and back.  We are booked on the Rio to Miami trip in 2022.  We also went on the Cape Town to Singapore cruise at the beginning of this year (though the ship diverted to Dubai).  We originally wanted to see Victoria Falls, Kruger National Park before going on the cruise, but we find out the water is kind of low in January.  So, we ended up visiting Johannesburg, Kruger National Park, Sabi Sands, Victoria Falls, and Chobe National Park in Botswant in May/June 2019.  Our favorite had to be Sabi Sands though everything was good.  If you do the Cape Town cruise, you have to spend a few days in Cape Town, one of the great port cities, up there with Sydney, Barcelona, and Rio.  You have to go wine tasting in Stellenbosch.  South Africa would be a much more interesting and fun vacation than the Amazon cruise.  

Deadzone1003...if you are going to be in Rio, I have the most amazing private guide for you

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We did a private safari at INYATI preserve. It was unbelievably  great.  Also did several days precruise in Cape town region. Spent 5 days touring sites and wine farms.  Bought 18 bottles of wine and took them on-board our ship.

 

On Madagascar  we did a private excursion to NOSY BE to see the lemurs.  Great day.   

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We agree with many posters above,to see the wildlife one must do a safari trip somewhere. Off topic we did an AMA “cruise” which went to Cape Town, Zambezi Queen o the Chobe river(4 nights) saw tons of animals, Johannsberg, and then 4 nights at Tinswalo lodge included great 8 game drives. Our favorite trip by far. PS , avoid Johansburg diamond district!! My first house cost less than that ROCK! 

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3 hours ago, Mrs f. said:

Deadzone1003...if you are going to be in Rio, I have the most amazing private guide for you

Thanks, but we have already been to Rio for over a week for its Carnival.  Also, been to Carnevale in Venice and only thing left is Mardi Gras, LOL.

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We looked at a similar trip a couple of years ago. IIRC, there are problems getting into some of the ports and wildlife viewing would be limited to long day trips to game preserves. Instead, we booked a land trip that included Capetown and wine country, Victoria Falls and two stops each in Kenya and Tanzania. Best trip ever! If you want to see wildlife, that's the way to go.

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We did a similar itinerary in 2017on the Nautica and LOVED it.  we did an Overland Excursion to Phinda Game Preserve thru O from Richard's bay, returning to the ship in Durban.  It was the highlight of the trip!  Phinda was excellent with wonderful lodging and 2 game drives per day.  We saw all of the major species and lots more up close.

Charlotte

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5 hours ago, bigmjh said:

I'm interested in hearing about this "amazing private guide".

His name is Augusto Guimaraes.....his site is under Tour Guide Gus.  

gusguide@hotmail.com

 

You can email  me at marjim48@gmail.com 

More than happy to tell you all about the 2 amazing days we spent with him

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On 9/27/2020 at 6:37 PM, tropicalkerry2002 said:

The aft balconies are wonderful. Deck 6 has the deepest one.

If you or anyone else have any pictures of the aft balconies on the Nautica, could you post them, please ?  

 

Actually, any pictures of the Nautica would be appreciated !

 

Or send them to daveispar@gmail.com.  My Wife and I would appreciate it.

 

Thanks in advance,

Dave & Lee

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