South Africa is a vast and enthralling place to visit. So much so, you might need more than one trip to fit everything in.
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Culture and cities
Away from nature, South Africa is home to the most cosmopolitan cities in all of Africa. The most visited, Cape Town, needs little introduction. Dominating its skyline is the famous Table Mountain, believed to be one of the oldest mountains in the world. You can take the cable car up most of the way or, for the more adventurous, there’s the option to climb, hike or bike. The views from the top are well worth it.
Johannesburg, the country’s largest city, is chronically overlooked. The city centre suffered greatly in the early 1990s, but over recent years hip boutiques and one-off restaurants have sprung up all over town, particularly in the Maboneng district.
Other popular cities in South Africa include Durban, East London and Port Elizabeth.
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History and Culture
The country has a unique and somewhat infamous history. In fact, it’s impossible to talk about South Africa without mentioning Apartheid. By visiting the museums dedicated to this tragic time, and by talking to local experts, you will learn a lot about South Africa’s character, its pride in its heritage and its hope for the future.
Nature and wildlife
One of the biggest draws to South Africa is its wildlife. The country is home to all the ‘big five’ game species – lions, leopards, elephants, rhinos and buffalo.
The most famous place to try your luck at witnessing these glorious creatures up close is the Kruger National Park in the north-east of the country. However, for those looking for a more intimate experience we recommend staying at one of the smaller private game reserves. Some of our favourites include: Phinda, Madikwe, Shamwari & Sabi Sabi.
Whilst not a beach destination as such, the coastline of South Africa is ruggedly beautiful. In the shallow Cape waters, you can catch crayfish by hand for a beach BBQ. Other spots have great wildlife watching opportunities. For example, there’s a penguin colony at Boulders Beach and Hermanus has some of the best land-based whale watching in the world.
Food and drink
South Africa is renowned for its fantastic food and quality wines. Visit the stunning wine farms in Stellenbosch, or Franschhoek for epic wine tasting experiences and exquisite dining.
Other culinary highlights include Boerewors sausage, sticky malva pudding, aromatic Cape Malay Curry and Bunny Chow served in its own bread bowl. And if you’re in this part of the world, you can’t leave without trying a traditional Braai (barbecue).
Adventure and experiences
With its deserts, wetlands, grasslands, bush, subtropical forests, mountains and escarpments, South Africa is home to some of the most dramatic and varied scenery in the world. Making it the perfect destination for outdoor adventurers!
Try rock climbing in Cederberg, surfing in the Eastern Cape or hiking the Drakensberg Mountains.