Special-interest holidays worldwide
Island Holidays
Established 1987

St Helena

Including 1 day exploring Pretoria (Johannesburg) and 3 days around Cape Town

View from Mount Pleasant

London • Johannesburg • St Helena • Johannesburg • Cape Town • London

The island of St Helena, a British Overseas Territory, lies in the middle of the South Atlantic Ocean and has a long history since it was first discovered by the Portuguese in 1502. Over the years it became an important port of call for ships on the trade routes, a place where the “slavers” “deposited” their “cargo” so that they weren't caught after the abolition and, more famously, the place to which Napoleon was exiled and then died.

Today St Helena has so be on the wish-list of all global travelers. Remote, even in the modern context, the island has very recently become more accessible with the opening of its long-awaited airport. Weekly flights from South Africa are opening up a new era but the delight is that the island and her people remain the same hospitable, welcoming folk that they have always been.

On the first impression as one flies in, this is a forbidding and barren place. Certainly that must have been how Napoleon saw it. But beyond the dramatic cliffs lies a rich and lush interior with much to recommend it and to discover.

Island Holidays has been privileged to be the first tour operator ever to introduce people to St Helena and all it has to offer – we've been doing that since 2005 when our trips included the wonderful, but now unavailable, Royal Mail Ship. We know the people and the island well and offer wonderful itineraries for small guided groups. If you would prefer to travel independently, we can tailor a package to meet your specific interests and requirements.

Heart-shaped waterfall

Key facts

  • St Helena: Island exploration, history & natural history
  • Fully guided tour
  • 2020 departures:
    12 March
  • Nights: 13
  • Fully inclusive cost: £6,875
  • Single room supplement: £750
  • Deposit: £850 pp
  • Meal Basis: Full Board
  • Activity level: Easy (with moderate walks available)
  • Tour leader: Libby Weir-Breen and local guides
  • Maximum Group Size: 12
  • Travel: British Airways
  • Departs: London Heathrow
  • Included in cost: International airfares and taxes, full board accommodation except for three lunches, tours and activities as described in the itinerary and local guides in South Africa and St Helena.
  • Not included in cost: £17 entry permit to St Helena, travel insurance, drinks and items of a personal nature.
  • St Helena March 2020
    detailed itinerary

Your tour leader

Libby Weir-BreenLibby Weir-Breen set up Island Holidays in 1987 with Shetland naturalist, the late Bobby Tulloch MBE. Her own experience in the travel industry goes back to 1977 when she left her job on The Scotsman newspaper to become a resort representative in St Anton in the Austrian Tyrol.

In 1987 she set up Island Holidays with the late Bobby Tulloch, Shetland's renowned naturalist. Since then she has travelled widely both researching and leading tours. A passionate conservationist and campaigner for trade justice, Libby has a love for the natural world and feels herself privileged to be able to express this through her work and to share it with so many like-minded people.

Your itinerary

Day 1: Our British airways flight direct to Johannesburg leaves London Heathrow in the early evening.

Day 2: We arrive in Johannesburg and are met by our local guides who will whisk us off to explore the highlights of nearby Pretoria. After a relaxed lunch we'll return to Johannesburg where we'll have a relaxed evening before an informal dinner and an early night.

Day 3: It's an early check-in for our 0900 hours flight to St Helena which calls at Windhoek for re-fueling before it continues to St Helena where we arrive around lunch time (you'll have been served a snack on board). Upon arrival we'll be met and taken to our guest house in Jamestown for a chance to settle in. In the late afternoon we'll enjoy a short orientation walk in Jamestown with a local personality and expert guide. There'll then be a couple of hours to relax before we experience our first real St Helena hospitality with dinner at a local place.

Days 4 – 9: Over the next few days we'll experience the best that St Helena has to offer: her people, her history, her natural heritage and history plus her magnificent countryside both on land and at sea. We are never absolutely specific but we do believe that you will experience the island in a unique, fascinating and intimate way.

Day 10: All too soon it's time to leave. We'll hope that you enjoy your last morning on this very special island before setting off back to South Africa. Upon arrival in Johannesburg we check in to our nearby hotel for dinner and overnight.

Day 11: We set off for an early flight to Cape Town where we'll be met by our local guide who will take us off to the delightful costal town of Hermanus. Here we'll have a chance to relax and explore and absorb all that we have been experiencing.

Day 12: Today we will go to the most southerly point of Africa, Cape Agulhas, where two great oceans meet. There will be stops along the and our local guide will enhance our knowledge and experience. We return to Hermanus for dinner and overnight.

Day 13: Our flight back to the UK leaves in the evening but before that we'll enjoy the delights of South Africa's best-known winelands including a lunch at a very special wine farm. We arrive at the airport in time for check-in at departure.

Day 14: Having had the most amazing and varied holiday, we arrive back in the UK early in the morning, in plenty of time to get back to our own homes with so much to tell those who we left behind.

Please note that the itinerary can be changed without notice at the sole discretion of Island Holidays or your tour leader.