Marta Tour & Trips

South outh and north of Angola Itinerary

Serra da Leba

Duration  9 days

Day 1. Arrival in Luanda.

Flight Luanda-Lubango After arrival in Luanda, take a flight to Lubango. Overnight in a hotel in Lubango.

Day 2. Lubango City Tour

Our first day here is dedicated to exploring the city of Lubango and its surrounding. It is the second most populous city in the country after the capital and is famous for its picturesque landscapes, including rolling hills, valleys, and the iconic Christ the King statue that overlooks the city. Some of the highlights of the city include the historical Lubango Train Station, The cathedral of Lubango (Sé Catedral de São José), the Huila Regional Museum and others. After a short break for lunch, we will head outside the city to the Tundavala Gap viewpoint. This geographical wonder is characterized by a dramatic escarpment that offers stunning panoramic views of the surrounding landscape. Upon arrival back to the city, we will visit the symbol of Lubango – Christ the King Statue. The 30-meter-tall marble statue was built in 1957 and was inspired by the Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. It is now one of the biggest statues of this kind in the world.

Day 3. Lubango – Kimbo – Huila Waterfalls – Lubango

We will start the day with a short drive to the village of Kimbo, where we will visit the community of the Mumwila tribe. The Mumwila are one of the most distinctive tribes in the region. They are known for their rich cultural heritage that includes traditional practices, crafts, jewelry, and body decorations. The women in particular have become quite famous for their jewelry and dreads, known as nontombi. To create this unique hairstyle, women mix ochre or crushed red stone with cow dung, herbs, oils and others. The women’s hairstyles and jewelry are used not only for decoration but also to show their status in the community. In the afternoon we will visit the Huila waterfalls, where we will have some time to relax before we head back to Lubango where we will spend the night.

Day 4. Lubango –Serra da Leba – Mangueiras – Namibe

Today we are heading southwest to the coastal city of Namibe. We will drive through the picturesque Sierra de Leba mountain range and follow the famous Sierra de Leba road, also known as the Estrada Nacional 280 (EN280). It is one of the most famous hairpin roads in the world and has become a symbol of Angola. The road was opened in the 1970s and according to the legend was named after a Portuguese woman who designed it and passed away on the day that it was finished. We will have a short stop in one of the local villages in the region to get some rest and experience a bit of the local way of life before we arrive in Namibe in the afternoon. The region of Namibe is characterized by its diverse landscapes, which include coastal areas, desert-like regions, and mountainous terrain, which we will get the chance to explore.

Day 5. The Namib Desert and Lagoa do Arco – Namibe

We will start the day with some 4×4 adventures in The Namibe Desert, also known as the Namib Desert in Angola – a coastal desert located along the Atlantic Ocean. The landscape is characterized by vast dunes that reach up to 300 meters in height, rocky plains, and sparse vegetation. Afterward, we will visit Arco Lake – a beautiful oasis, fed by the waters of the Rio Curoca river. It gets its name from the characteristic sandstone arches. Unfortunately, due to the lack of rain in recent years, the lake dried up a few years ago and has remained so ever since.

However, the region is still picturesque and worth taking the trip. Less than 30 minutes away is one of the hidden gems of our itinerary – the picturesque Camilunga Canyon. In the evening we will return to Namibe where we will spend the night.  

Day 6. Namibe – Luanda

Today you will have some free time to explore Namibe on your own before we take our flight back to Luanda. Overnight in a hotel in Luanda.

 Day 7. Luanda – Kalandula Falls – Melanje

Today we have quite a long drive to reach the magnificent Kalandula Waterfalls – one of the largest waterfalls by volume in Africa and a highlight of any visit to Angola. We will have a short stop in the town of Ndalatando to take a walk around its beautiful Botanical Garden (Rosas de Porcelana). We will arrive at the waterfalls in the early afternoon and spend about an hour or two enjoying the spectacular view. The waterfalls have an impressive drop of approximately 105 meters (344 feet), making them taller than the famous Victoria Falls on the Zambezi River. The width of the falls spans around 400 meters (1,312 feet), contributing to the grandeur of the site. A short, but quite challenging and slippery road takes you to the base of the waterfall to see it from a unique perspective. In the early evening, we are expected to arrive in the town of Melanje, where we will spend the night.

Day 8. Malanje – Kalandula Falls – Pedras Negras- Luanda

In the morning we are heading to the waterfalls once again and will stop at another viewpoint to see them from the other side. Our next stop will be the impressive rock formation of Pedras Negras (The Black Stones). These hard sedimentary stones remain a geological mystery since they do not fit with the surrounding topography. The region was once the capital of The Kingdom of Ndongo – an African kingdom that existed between the 16th and the 20th century. It is believed that the footprints of King Ngola Kiluanji and Queen Ginga that lived in the 17th century and ruled that kingdom are embedded in the rocks. We will arrive in Luanda in the evening.

Day 9. Luanda City Tour

Our last day in Angola is dedicated to exploring the capital city of Luanda. We will start our tour with a visit to the mausoleum of Augustinho Neto, the first President of Angola. The curious building is not only the final resting place of “The Father of Modern Angola”, but one of the architectural landmarks of the city. The obelisk-like structure was built in 2012 in a typical brutalist architecture style and is said to reference a spaceship. In the beginning, the locals even called it “Sputnik”. We will then continue to The National Museum of Anthropology – home to an impressive collection of traditional masks and other artifacts. Our next stop is the Fortaleza de Sao Miguel. It was one of the first sites constructed by the Portuguese during the earliest period of colonial rule in the 16th century. The fort played a role in the defense against invasions and served as a base for the Portuguese military. Later it became a key point in the transatlantic slave trade – enslaved Africans were brought to the fort from various regions in Angola, where they were held under harsh conditions before being transported on the long and often deadly journey across the Atlantic Ocean. Another highlight of the city is the Igreja Nossa Senhora do Populo – the first Anglican church in Angola that was built in 1482. Our tour will end in the early afternoon with a group transfer to the aiport for a flight back home.

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