What To Do
South Africa is perfectly suited to tailor-made holidays with a fantastic range of accommodation from family friendly self-catering apartments with pools to beautiful Cape Dutch wine estates. While many areas can be easily explored using a hire vehicle, in game reserves and parks we recommend staying in a private camp/lodge where you can enjoy top class guiding in open safari vehicles.
Cape Town and the Cape provinces are a popular and must-visit destination. The City is one of the most stunning in the world, its centre is situated in an amphitheatre running up the lower slopes of Table Mountain. There is plenty to do here, from a trip on the Cable car up the mountain to enjoy the stunning views of the city and the surrounding coastline, to a boat trip to Mandela's old prison on Robben Island. The Waterfront offers great shopping and dining.
The Cape Provinces are home to the Winelands, rolling hills covered with vines that produce some excellent wines, with many of the vineyards offering tastings and tours. Their coastline forms what is known as the Garden Route, a rugged coastline that is rich in flora and fauna because of its temperate climate. From the Cape of Good Hope, through Boulders Bay with its penguin colony, you arrive at Hermanus, a pretty coastal town famous for its shore based whale-watching.
From here you continue to Knysna, beautifully situated on a tidal lagoon, and a great place to stay and explore the surrounding countryside and Tsitsikama forest. Moving east you arrive at Plettenberg Bay where you can take a boat trip out looking for whales and dolphins - last time we were here we saw a pod of over 100 dolphins.
Most Garden Route tours end (or start, you can do the route in reverse and finish in Cape Town) in Port Elizabeth, the advantage of this being that you can end with a safari. To the east of Port Elizabeth there are several National Parks and Private Game Reserves that boast the Big 5 and excellent game-viewing. Addo Elephant reserve is Government owned and claims to offer the Big seven- the traditional animals of lion, leopards, elephants, rhino and buffalo, plus the two marine attractions of whales and sharks. The Private Reserves, such as Shamwari and Kariega, have different types of accommodation, from lodge, camp to private houses and great game viewing.
If safari is what your visit is about them the place to visit is Kruger National Park situated in Mpumalanga and Limpopo provinces.. One of the largest and most famous reserves in the world, it is part of the Transfrontier Park with areas of Zimbabwe and Mozambique which together offer a vast tract of protected areas. You can stay at a network of Government owned rest camps and lodges, or in one of the many luxury lodges and camps that have private concessions around the park. For those in Johannesburg its is possible to drive to Pilanesberg National Park and either stay inside, enjoying the game, or in the resort of Sun City nearby.
Other interesting destinations include the Drakensberg Mountains in which you can enjoy some excellent walking or riding trails. A visit to Swaziland is possible on most tours, and a stay in the mountain kingdom of Lesotho can also be arranges. As you travel towards Durban you travel through Kwa-Zulu Natal, and are able to see the cultural homeland of the famous Zulu tribe and the battle fields from the Boer Wars.
As well as these few highlights, there are many other things to see and places to do. We can organize visits to townships where a local guide will show you everyday life, a tour that visits all the main places from the life of Nelson Mandela, or combinations of the best of South Africa with either Mauritius or the beautiful Victoria Falls in Zambia. Whatever you choose, South Africa won't disappoint.
Malaria free safari areas
You can safari in the following areas without taking malaria pills, based on current advice: The Eastern Cape, Madikwe, Pilanesberg, The Waterberg. To read our blog about non malarial safaris in South Africa please click here.