South Africa has all the features that travelers would want in a resort destination: Good weather, stunning scenery, great beach, modern accommodation and great cuisine. Africa’s southern tip also offers a bizarre set of once-in-a-lifetime adventures,
from off-roading on a safari to diving with great white sharks. It’s hard to name any other vacation destination with so much variety. Here are the best places to visit in South Africa.
Blyde River Canyon.
Blyde River Canyon is the second largest canyon in Africa, after the Fish River Canyon, al thoughit is much greener due to its lush subtropical foliage. Walking treks through the rich diversity of flora and fauna filled canyon offer views of magnificent escarpments, waterfalls and ancient geological phenomenon. Visitors have the opportunity to encounter all five of South Africa’s primates here, as well as hippos and crocodiles near the wetlands of Swa dini Dam.
The fertile valleys of the Cape Winelands are surrounded by majestic mountains, sleepy villages, fruitful orchards and some of the lushest scenery in South Africa. Visitors can follow the Wine Routes of the Cape to visit the vineyards of the country ’sfinest winemakers, whose sherries, ports, brandies and intriguing whites and reds are world famous for their delicate flavors and savory palatability.
Addo Elephant National Park.
Located in the Eastern Cape region of South Africa, the Addo Elephant National Park is one of the country’s larger parks. The Park is famous for its elephant population that has a special, brownish skin color due to the red soil. Amongst the elephants other animals, like ostriches, antelopes and warthogs can be seen. As part of the park’s expansion, a group of lions and a group of spotted hyenas have been introduced to the park in 2004.
Located on the southern coast of Africa near the Garden Route, Hermanus is famous for it sshore-based whale-watching. The sheltered, shallow waters attract southern right whales that migrate to the region each year to mate and breed. A 6 mile long cliff-side walk with built-in telescopes and benches offers visitors plenty of opportunities to view these social animals as they raise their flukes in the sea breezes. Whale-watching boat tours are available as well.
South Africa’s second-largest city, Durban is located on the eastern coast. Durban’s subtropical climate, scenic beaches and close proximity to Johannesburg have made the coastal city a popular vacation destination for South Africans. The English Colonial architecture that once dominated the city has been enlivened by a mix of Zulu murals, Islamic mosques, Hindu temples and Christian churches.
Hluhluwe-Umfolozi Game Reserve.
As the only park under a formal conservation effort in KwaZulu Natal where you can seethe Big Five – lions, elephants, leopards, buffalo and rhinoceros – the Hluhluwe-Umfolozi Game Reserve offers visitors wildlife viewing opportunities second to none. Wildlife enthusiasts may enjoy the vast expanses of native plants and native animals during guided walks, self-guided drives, or opt for a thrilling viewing experience by boat along the Hluhluwe dam.
The Garden Route is a scenic stretch of the south-eastern coast of South Africa. It extends from Moss el Bay in the Western Cape to the Storms River in the Eastern Cape. The name comes from the diverse vegetation encountered here and the numerous lagoons and lakes dotted along the coast. It includes some of the best places to visit in South Africa including Knysna, Plettenberg Bay and Nature’s Valley.
The Drakensberg is a mountainous region that forms the boundary between South Africa and the mountain kingdom of Lesotho, and offers some of the country’s most awe-inspiringlandscapes. The name ‘Drakensberg’ is derived from the Dutch, meaning “mountains of the dragon”, which truly captures something of the mountain’s otherworldly atmosphere.
Kruger National Park.
Covering a wide stretch of bush and savannah in the northern reaches of South Africa, Kruger National Park borders the countries of Mozambique and Zimbabwe. For its dense animal population and the variety of its flora and fauna, the park is considered the jewel of South Africa’s extensive park system. Numerous well-kept tarred and gravel roads have made the park a favorite choice for self-drivingexpeditions.
Located on the southwest tip of South Africa’s Western Cape Province, Cape Town is the mostpopular tourist destination in all of Africa. The metropolis enjoys a mild, Mediterranean climate, a well-developed infrastructure and a spectacular natural setting. Cape Town’s center is located in a relatively small area between Table Mountain and Table Bay. The city also serves as a home base for exploring nearby attractions, including the region’ smany diverse beaches as well as the rolling hills and valleys of the Winelands.