South Africa

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10 places where you can find the world in South Africa

Desiree Haakonsen of Travelground gathered this amazing selection of lookalike spots in South Africa that compare well with international destinations.

You’ve heard it before: South Africa is diverse. We didn’t realise quite how true this statement was until we embarked on a snapshot journey to find how many places in South Africa resembled destinations around the world. You’d be surprised!

1. Miami/Durban
The art deco buildings, palm trees, long sunny days, and warm tropical waters of Miami can be found on the Durban city coastline.

Miami. Image Bigstock

Miami. Image Bigstock

Durban. Image Bigstock

Durban. Image Bigstock

2. Piva Canyon/Blyde River Canyon
The famous Piva Canyon in Montenegro National Park could be the European sister of ourBlyde River Canyon in Mpumalanga.

Piva Canyon. Image Bigstock

Piva Canyon. Image Bigstock

Blyde River Canyon. Image Bigstock

Blyde River Canyon. Image Bigstock

3. Sub-Sahara/Karoo
We might not have the vast desert dunes of the Sahara, but the Karoo bears a striking resemblance to the scrubby terrain of the sub-Sahara.

Saharan landscape. Image Bigstock

Saharan landscape. Image Bigstock

Karoo landscape. Image Bigstock

Karoo landscape. Image Bigstock

4. Great Barrier Reef/Sodwana Bay
Why fork out your life savings to scuba in the Great Barrier Reef when Sodwana Bay is one of the top diving destinations in the world?

Great Barrier Reef. Image Bigstock

Great Barrier Reef. Image Bigstock

Sodwana Bay. Image Bigstock

Sodwana Bay. Image Bigstock

5. French Winelands/Cape Winelands
We may not be able to call it Champagne, but our Methode Cap Classiques are just as good!

French winelands. Image Bigstock

French winelands. Image Bigstock

Cape Winelands. Image Vergelegen Estate

Cape Winelands. Image Vergelegen Estate

6. Blue Mountains/Mpumalanga
Sometime less is more. Pinnacle Rock in Mpumalanga is just as inspiring as the Three Sisters in the Blue Mountains of Australia.

Blue Mountains. Image Bigstock

Blue Mountains. Image Bigstock

Pinnacle Rock. Image Bigstock

Pinnacle Rock. Image Bigstock

7. Lake Nakuru/Kimberley
Lake Nakuru in Kenya is home to thousands of pink flamingos, but you’ll find a similar spectacle at Kamfers Dam in Kimberley.

Lake Nakaru. Image Bigstock

Lake Nakaru. Image Bigstock

Kamfer Dam. Image courtesy of Winston Mcleod

Kamfer Dam. Image courtesy of Winston Mcleod

8. Assateague Island/Bot River Lagoon
Assateague Island, off the coast of Maryland, United States, is home to more than 100 wild ponies. You can also find approximately 25 wild horses living freely in the dunes of the Bot River Lagoon in the Overberg.

Assateague Island. Image Bigstock

Assateague Island. Image Bigstock

Kleinmond. Image Travelground

Kleinmond. Image Travelground

9. Angel Falls/Tugela Falls
Angel Falls in Venezuela is the world’s highest uninterrupted waterfall, with a height of 979m, while the Tugela Falls in the Drakensberg is the world’s second highest waterfall with a total drop of 948m in five free-leaping falls.

Angel Falls. Bigstock

Angel Falls. Bigstock

Tugela Falls. Bigstock

Tugela Falls. Bigstock

10 New Zealand/Wilderness
The forests, mountains and waterways that make New Zealand such an attractive destination can also be found in the little Garden Route town of Wilderness.

Forest trail, New Zealand. Image Bigstock

Forest trail, New Zealand. Image Bigstock

Wilderness. Image Travelground

Wilderness. Image Travelground

10 places where you can find the world in South Africa

Desiree Haakonsen of Travelground gathered this amazing selection of lookalike spots in South Africa that compare well with international destinations.

You’ve heard it before: South Africa is diverse. We didn’t realise quite how true this statement was until we embarked on a snapshot journey to find how many places in South Africa resembled destinations around the world. You’d be surprised!

1. Miami/Durban
The art deco buildings, palm trees, long sunny days, and warm tropical waters of Miami can be found on the Durban city coastline.

Miami. Image Bigstock

Miami. Image Bigstock

Durban. Image Bigstock

Durban. Image Bigstock

2. Piva Canyon/Blyde River Canyon
The famous Piva Canyon in Montenegro National Park could be the European sister of ourBlyde River Canyon in Mpumalanga.

Piva Canyon. Image Bigstock

Piva Canyon. Image Bigstock

Blyde River Canyon. Image Bigstock

Blyde River Canyon. Image Bigstock

3. Sub-Sahara/Karoo
We might not have the vast desert dunes of the Sahara, but the Karoo bears a striking resemblance to the scrubby terrain of the sub-Sahara.

Saharan landscape. Image Bigstock

Saharan landscape. Image Bigstock

Karoo landscape. Image Bigstock

Karoo landscape. Image Bigstock

4. Great Barrier Reef/Sodwana Bay
Why fork out your life savings to scuba in the Great Barrier Reef when Sodwana Bay is one of the top diving destinations in the world?

Great Barrier Reef. Image Bigstock

Great Barrier Reef. Image Bigstock

Sodwana Bay. Image Bigstock

Sodwana Bay. Image Bigstock

5. French Winelands/Cape Winelands
We may not be able to call it Champagne, but our Methode Cap Classiques are just as good!

French winelands. Image Bigstock

French winelands. Image Bigstock

Cape Winelands. Image Vergelegen Estate

Cape Winelands. Image Vergelegen Estate

6. Blue Mountains/Mpumalanga
Sometime less is more. Pinnacle Rock in Mpumalanga is just as inspiring as the Three Sisters in the Blue Mountains of Australia.

Blue Mountains. Image Bigstock

Blue Mountains. Image Bigstock

Pinnacle Rock. Image Bigstock

Pinnacle Rock. Image Bigstock

7. Lake Nakuru/Kimberley
Lake Nakuru in Kenya is home to thousands of pink flamingos, but you’ll find a similar spectacle at Kamfers Dam in Kimberley.

Lake Nakaru. Image Bigstock

Lake Nakaru. Image Bigstock

Kamfer Dam. Image courtesy of Winston Mcleod

Kamfer Dam. Image courtesy of Winston Mcleod

8. Assateague Island/Bot River Lagoon
Assateague Island, off the coast of Maryland, United States, is home to more than 100 wild ponies. You can also find approximately 25 wild horses living freely in the dunes of the Bot River Lagoon in the Overberg.

Assateague Island. Image Bigstock

Assateague Island. Image Bigstock

Kleinmond. Image Travelground

Kleinmond. Image Travelground

9. Angel Falls/Tugela Falls
Angel Falls in Venezuela is the world’s highest uninterrupted waterfall, with a height of 979m, while the Tugela Falls in the Drakensberg is the world’s second highest waterfall with a total drop of 948m in five free-leaping falls.

Angel Falls. Bigstock

Angel Falls. Bigstock

Tugela Falls. Bigstock

Tugela Falls. Bigstock

10 New Zealand/Wilderness
The forests, mountains and waterways that make New Zealand such an attractive destination can also be found in the little Garden Route town of Wilderness.

Forest trail, New Zealand. Image Bigstock

Forest trail, New Zealand. Image Bigstock

Wilderness. Image Travelground

Wilderness. Image Travelground

Reconsider South Africa:  The Video

 

videoFrameThe latest ad from South African Tourism highlights what makes a trip to South Africa so compelling by highlighting the authenticity and friendliness of the South African people.

Join traveller James O’Driscoll as he experiences the warmth and hospitality of his South African hosts and builds genuine connections with the people, places and experiences that make up a truly unforgettable holiday.

Reconsider South Africa: The Video

 

videoFrameThe latest ad from South African Tourism highlights what makes a trip to South Africa so compelling by highlighting the authenticity and friendliness of the South African people.

Join traveller James O’Driscoll as he experiences the warmth and hospitality of his South African hosts and builds genuine connections with the people, places and experiences that make up a truly unforgettable holiday.

Road Tripping in South Africa
South Africa is a great country to drive around because of excellent roads and infrastructure. So get hold of a new user-friendly book that suggests some great road trips – all perfectly manageable in a sedan – and discover some new destinations.

12 May 2014 by Kate Turkington

Road Tripping South Africa (Map Studio), available at good book stores nationwide, suggests some fascinating off-the-beaten track detours that will give you the opportunity to discover a South Africa away from the regular tourist destinations. Written by a number of top local travel writers, each ‘journey’ is divided into useful sections that give you information on everything from driving time, distances and maps, to highlights and all the necessary tourism contact details.

The book also suggests what to pack (you’ll learn an essential Afrikaans word, ‘padkos’, which literally means ‘road food’), from a fully charged mobile phone, to water, toilet paper and a sat nav (most rental cars have them).

Maybe you plan to drive from Johannesburg to Cape Town? Instead of zooming along the N1 – the major national road – take your time and enjoy some of the many potential detours along the way.

What about a picnic in the Golden Gate Highlands National Park; a visit to St Augustine’s Priory; soaking up the Karoo landscape; stopping for a night at the Mountain Zebra National Park and going hiking; goggling at South Africa’s oldest grapevine in the historical town of Graaff-Reinett (buy some hand-knitted or hand-woven mohair goodies here); enjoying some of the world’s finest stargazing at Sutherland (but be warned, it’s freezing in winter); and lots more scenic, historical and culturally fascinating places, before you finally roll into the Mother City?

If it’s wildlife you’re after, you could choose the Ultimate Safari Route that takes you from St Lucia in KwaZulu-Natal, through Swaziland to the Kruger National Park.

If it’s wildlife you’re after, you could choose the Ultimate Safari Route that takes you from St Lucia in KwaZulu-Natal, through Swaziland to the Kruger National Park. On this route you can go from one game reserve to another (with no boring bits in between) for 10 whole days. Other options include a golf road trip; a surfing road trip; Route 62 and some of the country’s most wildly scenic passes; a tour around Mpumalanga’s Panorama Route; admiring glorious scenery and swimming in as many waterfalls as possible; a journey along the Eastern Cape’s Wild Coast (some of the most beautiful and deserted beaches in the world); or an Anglo-Zulu Battlefield route.

KwaZulu-Natal

Handy tips are given for each route, helpful historical nuggets, and an ‘On the Side’ box for each route that suggests even more things to do and places to go.

All the information you need to know about driving conditions, pet- and child-friendly ratings, the best time to visit and some suggested background reading is also provided.

So as we say in South Africa, ‘put foot’ – in other words, foot down on the accelerator and off you go…

The Swartberg Pass in the Western Cape

Road Tripping in South Africa

South Africa is a great country to drive around because of excellent roads and infrastructure. So get hold of a new user-friendly book that suggests some great road trips – all perfectly manageable in a sedan – and discover some new destinations.

12 May 2014 by Kate Turkington

Road Tripping South Africa (Map Studio), available at good book stores nationwide, suggests some fascinating off-the-beaten track detours that will give you the opportunity to discover a South Africa away from the regular tourist destinations. Written by a number of top local travel writers, each ‘journey’ is divided into useful sections that give you information on everything from driving time, distances and maps, to highlights and all the necessary tourism contact details.

The book also suggests what to pack (you’ll learn an essential Afrikaans word, ‘padkos’, which literally means ‘road food’), from a fully charged mobile phone, to water, toilet paper and a sat nav (most rental cars have them).

Maybe you plan to drive from Johannesburg to Cape Town? Instead of zooming along the N1 – the major national road – take your time and enjoy some of the many potential detours along the way.

What about a picnic in the Golden Gate Highlands National Park; a visit to St Augustine’s Priory; soaking up the Karoo landscape; stopping for a night at the Mountain Zebra National Park and going hiking; goggling at South Africa’s oldest grapevine in the historical town of Graaff-Reinett (buy some hand-knitted or hand-woven mohair goodies here); enjoying some of the world’s finest stargazing at Sutherland (but be warned, it’s freezing in winter); and lots more scenic, historical and culturally fascinating places, before you finally roll into the Mother City?

If it’s wildlife you’re after, you could choose the Ultimate Safari Route that takes you from St Lucia in KwaZulu-Natal, through Swaziland to the Kruger National Park.

If it’s wildlife you’re after, you could choose the Ultimate Safari Route that takes you from St Lucia in KwaZulu-Natal, through Swaziland to the Kruger National Park. On this route you can go from one game reserve to another (with no boring bits in between) for 10 whole days. Other options include a golf road trip; a surfing road trip; Route 62 and some of the country’s most wildly scenic passes; a tour around Mpumalanga’s Panorama Route; admiring glorious scenery and swimming in as many waterfalls as possible; a journey along the Eastern Cape’s Wild Coast (some of the most beautiful and deserted beaches in the world); or an Anglo-Zulu Battlefield route.

KwaZulu-Natal

Handy tips are given for each route, helpful historical nuggets, and an ‘On the Side’ box for each route that suggests even more things to do and places to go.

All the information you need to know about driving conditions, pet- and child-friendly ratings, the best time to visit and some suggested background reading is also provided.

So as we say in South Africa, ‘put foot’ – in other words, foot down on the accelerator and off you go…

The Swartberg Pass in the Western Cape
Democratic South Africa: 20 years on, and still going strong

In 1994 South Africans experienced an event that would change their lives and the country’s reputation forever: the first democratic elections.

20 May 2014 by Daphney Mngomeni

Inked thumb after voting in a South African election. Image courtesy of Darryn van der Walt

The system of apartheid, which had segregated the citizens of South Africa based on their skin colour, came to an end and a new age dawned.

South Africa has come a long way in the past 20 years and has lived up to its reputation of being a Rainbow Nation, a term coined by Archbishop Desmond Tutu to describe the country’s post-apartheid incarnation.

Boasting a well-established tourism industry that’s big on adventure, sport, nature and wildlife, it’s no wonder that South Africa is increasingly regarded as a top travel destination.

Even South Africans who have lived in the country all their lives can’t get enough of its attractions, and the endless exciting destinations waiting to be explored.

Wildlife, food, culture and sport are popular in this country, and there’s plenty of each to go around.

Namaqualand’s natural beauty. Image South African Tourism

Results of a survey taken after the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa show that South Africa is a welcoming place; 90% of visitors to South Africa during the World Cup found locals to be very friendly and hospitable.

Townships, which were once reserved for black South Africans, have since become a huge hit with tourists.

In 2007 township tourism first boomed, and places such as Soweto, New Brighton, Alexandra and Khayelitsha have since become popular destinations for tourists wanting genuine and memorable experiences.

Home to the Big Five, one of the New7Wonders of the World, nature reserves that are ranked among the world’s finest and Blue Flag beaches, South Africa has natural beauty that’s hard to beat.

So the next time the travel bug bites, book a flight to South Africa for unforgettable experiences – and if you’re from South Africa, remember … home is where the heart is.

Cape Town’s Table Mountain. Image courtesy of Dietmar Temps

 

Democratic South Africa: 20 years on, and still going strong

In 1994 South Africans experienced an event that would change their lives and the country’s reputation forever: the first democratic elections.

20 May 2014 by Daphney Mngomeni

Inked thumb after voting in a South African election. Image courtesy of Darryn van der Walt

The system of apartheid, which had segregated the citizens of South Africa based on their skin colour, came to an end and a new age dawned.

South Africa has come a long way in the past 20 years and has lived up to its reputation of being a Rainbow Nation, a term coined by Archbishop Desmond Tutu to describe the country’s post-apartheid incarnation.

Boasting a well-established tourism industry that’s big on adventure, sport, nature and wildlife, it’s no wonder that South Africa is increasingly regarded as a top travel destination.

Even South Africans who have lived in the country all their lives can’t get enough of its attractions, and the endless exciting destinations waiting to be explored.

Wildlife, food, culture and sport are popular in this country, and there’s plenty of each to go around.

Namaqualand’s natural beauty. Image South African Tourism

Results of a survey taken after the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa show that South Africa is a welcoming place; 90% of visitors to South Africa during the World Cup found locals to be very friendly and hospitable.

Townships, which were once reserved for black South Africans, have since become a huge hit with tourists.

In 2007 township tourism first boomed, and places such as Soweto, New Brighton, Alexandra and Khayelitsha have since become popular destinations for tourists wanting genuine and memorable experiences.

Home to the Big Five, one of the New7Wonders of the World, nature reserves that are ranked among the world’s finest and Blue Flag beaches, South Africa has natural beauty that’s hard to beat.

So the next time the travel bug bites, book a flight to South Africa for unforgettable experiences – and if you’re from South Africa, remember … home is where the heart is.

Cape Town’s Table Mountain. Image courtesy of Dietmar Temps

 

Five cool things to do in Durban
Durban is famous for its balmy weather, lush, subtropical feel and its links to the Orient. Here are five cool ways to experience South Africa’s most popular holiday destination.
Trainee life guards at Durban’s North Beach

Never been to Durban before? Here are a few must-dos when you’re there…

1. Dip your toes in the Indian Ocean

Durban’s claim to fame is the balmy waters of the Indian Ocean that make year-round swimming and surfing a pleasure, and it’s not unusual to see Durbanites nipping down to the water’s edge for a quick surf between business engagements. Take a stroll along the beachfront and spot the incredible sand sculptures that are a permanent fixture here, or chat to the lifeguards whose job it is to keep an eye on anyone who ventures into the water.

Sand sculptures are a fixture on the beachfront

2. Go on a city walking tour

The sprawl of Durban can be confusing and a bit overwhelming for the first-timer, so one of the best ways to acclimatise yourself to the heady cultural mix of the city is to go on a walking tour. If you’re interested in Durban’s links with the Orient, or want to see some of the historical landmarks on foot, then book a tour with Durban Tourism. It costs only R100 for an adult and will keep you occupied for several hours. The Oriental Walkabout will take you past landmarks like the Juma Musjid Mosque and the Victoria Street Market, while the Historical Walkabout will see you visiting landmark buildings like the current City Hall.

Bookings: Call Durban Tourism on +27 (0)31 3224173 to arrange a tour so that they can line up a guide for you. Tours start at 9.30am or 1.30pm, but must be arranged in advance.

An organised walking tour is a good way to orientate yourself
Durban’s City Hall

3. Buy some masala for the folks back home

Thanks to Durban’s Indian population, this city is famous for its curries and so it is virtually mandatory to eat a spicy meal when you’re here. If you want to take that nice, warm feeling back home with you, then buy some masala (mixed, ground spices). Some traders make up frighteningly hot mixes with names like ‘Arson Fire: Mother-in-Law Exterminator’. If you’re not up for the hottest of hot curries, then request a milder version to be made up especially for you. A sachet should cost around R20.

Masala piled high at a trading store in the Victoria Street Market
Stall inside Victoria Street Market

4. Visit the KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board

Based in Umhlanga, north of central Durban, is the KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board, whose job it is to protect bathers along the coastline of this province, where the warm waters attract some 14 species of shark inshore (only three of which are dangerous to bathers). Here there is an interesting display with more information about the sea life to be found in these waters and a curio shop. On Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, you can also attend an audio-visual presentation and watch a shark dissection. Sharks have been known to scavenge all manner of things (like Wellington boots and even human body parts), so you never quite know what might be inside that stomach!

Where? Follow the signs on Umhlanga Rocks Drive past the Umhlanga Hospital
Contact: +27 (0)31 566 0400

A dissection at the KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board
This surfboard is on display at the KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board head offices in Umhlanga

5. Have sundowners at a beachfront hotel

The Southern Sun Elangeni & Maharani has a great Panorama Bar and Pool Deck on the second floor, with a commanding view over the beachfront where you can watch the surfers dropping into the water off a pier, or simply enjoy the balmy air and view of the glistening water. Remember that the sun rises in the East, so you won’t see it sink into the sea but it’s a still a great place for cocktails or to enjoy one of their trademark ice creams. Another popular spot is Joe Cool’s on the beachfront.

Durban beachfront as seen from the sea

 

Five cool things to do in Durban

Durban is famous for its balmy weather, lush, subtropical feel and its links to the Orient. Here are five cool ways to experience South Africa’s most popular holiday destination.
Trainee life guards at Durban’s North Beach

Never been to Durban before? Here are a few must-dos when you’re there…

1. Dip your toes in the Indian Ocean

Durban’s claim to fame is the balmy waters of the Indian Ocean that make year-round swimming and surfing a pleasure, and it’s not unusual to see Durbanites nipping down to the water’s edge for a quick surf between business engagements. Take a stroll along the beachfront and spot the incredible sand sculptures that are a permanent fixture here, or chat to the lifeguards whose job it is to keep an eye on anyone who ventures into the water.

Sand sculptures are a fixture on the beachfront

2. Go on a city walking tour

The sprawl of Durban can be confusing and a bit overwhelming for the first-timer, so one of the best ways to acclimatise yourself to the heady cultural mix of the city is to go on a walking tour. If you’re interested in Durban’s links with the Orient, or want to see some of the historical landmarks on foot, then book a tour with Durban Tourism. It costs only R100 for an adult and will keep you occupied for several hours. The Oriental Walkabout will take you past landmarks like the Juma Musjid Mosque and the Victoria Street Market, while the Historical Walkabout will see you visiting landmark buildings like the current City Hall.

Bookings: Call Durban Tourism on +27 (0)31 3224173 to arrange a tour so that they can line up a guide for you. Tours start at 9.30am or 1.30pm, but must be arranged in advance.

An organised walking tour is a good way to orientate yourself
Durban’s City Hall

3. Buy some masala for the folks back home

Thanks to Durban’s Indian population, this city is famous for its curries and so it is virtually mandatory to eat a spicy meal when you’re here. If you want to take that nice, warm feeling back home with you, then buy some masala (mixed, ground spices). Some traders make up frighteningly hot mixes with names like ‘Arson Fire: Mother-in-Law Exterminator’. If you’re not up for the hottest of hot curries, then request a milder version to be made up especially for you. A sachet should cost around R20.

Masala piled high at a trading store in the Victoria Street Market
Stall inside Victoria Street Market

4. Visit the KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board

Based in Umhlanga, north of central Durban, is the KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board, whose job it is to protect bathers along the coastline of this province, where the warm waters attract some 14 species of shark inshore (only three of which are dangerous to bathers). Here there is an interesting display with more information about the sea life to be found in these waters and a curio shop. On Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, you can also attend an audio-visual presentation and watch a shark dissection. Sharks have been known to scavenge all manner of things (like Wellington boots and even human body parts), so you never quite know what might be inside that stomach!

Where? Follow the signs on Umhlanga Rocks Drive past the Umhlanga Hospital
Contact: +27 (0)31 566 0400

A dissection at the KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board
This surfboard is on display at the KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board head offices in Umhlanga

5. Have sundowners at a beachfront hotel

The Southern Sun Elangeni & Maharani has a great Panorama Bar and Pool Deck on the second floor, with a commanding view over the beachfront where you can watch the surfers dropping into the water off a pier, or simply enjoy the balmy air and view of the glistening water. Remember that the sun rises in the East, so you won’t see it sink into the sea but it’s a still a great place for cocktails or to enjoy one of their trademark ice creams. Another popular spot is Joe Cool’s on the beachfront.

Durban beachfront as seen from the sea

 

Hit a six in Cape Town once the cricket wraps up

If you’ve spent an hour or two checking out the international series in South Africa, you’d know it’s been a pretty exciting tour – finely balanced after two Tests, with the Aussies hoping to finish the tour on a high with a win in Cape Town.  And if you’re looking to follow the team’s footsteps, and make sure you hit Cape Town for a six, we’ve lined up some of the top things for you to do while in the Mother City.
More →

Hit a six in Cape Town once the cricket wraps up

If you’ve spent an hour or two checking out the international series in South Africa, you’d know it’s been a pretty exciting tour – finely balanced after two Tests, with the Aussies hoping to finish the tour on a high with a win in Cape Town.  And if you’re looking to follow the team’s footsteps, and make sure you hit Cape Town for a six, we’ve lined up some of the top things for you to do while in the Mother City.
More →

Our commitment to Conservation

South Africa is a place of beauty and depicts so vividly the majestic nature of its wildlife. A huge part of that wildlife is the rhino and although a rhino may look quite indestructible (it’s the second largest animal on land and weighs on average two tonnes!), populations have plummeted in the past and now there are fears that the rhino is facing renewed risk of extinction. As the demand for rhino horn increases in the Far East there has been a rapid increase in poaching of the beautiful white and black rhinos.

More →

Our commitment to Conservation

South Africa is a place of beauty and depicts so vividly the majestic nature of its wildlife. A huge part of that wildlife is the rhino and although a rhino may look quite indestructible (it’s the second largest animal on land and weighs on average two tonnes!), populations have plummeted in the past and now there are fears that the rhino is facing renewed risk of extinction. As the demand for rhino horn increases in the Far East there has been a rapid increase in poaching of the beautiful white and black rhinos.

More →

Gone glamping: The best ways to camp in style in South Africa

Sleeping under the stars is one thing. But doing it in a king-size bed with gourmet meals and air conditioning sure beats a sleeping bag. More →

Gone glamping: The best ways to camp in style in South Africa

Sleeping under the stars is one thing. But doing it in a king-size bed with gourmet meals and air conditioning sure beats a sleeping bag. More →

Top 5 Best Places to visit in South Africa

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5. Hermanus

A popular seaside down situated two hours from Cape Town on the Western Cape, Hermanus is most famous for being a whale watchers dream. Between August and November, whales can be seen every day along the coastal area of the town. If whale watching is too serene for your tastes, try your hand at cage diving with Great White Sharks on the nearby Dyer Island!

 Photobucket

4. Garden Route

One of the most beautiful scenic routes in South Africa, the Garden Route is located on the south-eastern coast between Mossel Bay and Storms River. The route is home to ten different nature reserves that house almost 300 species of birds as well as seals, dolphins and whales. The best way to experience the trip is to hire a car, although you could also catch a ride on Africa’s last remaining passenger steam train, the Outeniqua Choo-Tjoe.

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3. Kruger National Park

Kruger is Africa’s oldest wildlife park, established in 1898. If you’re after a classic safari tour, the park boasts the highest variety of wildlife in Africa including hippos, giraffes, cheetah, crocodiles and more. If you’re after a camping experience, there are plenty of camp sites and bushveld camps to set up at or if you’re looking for more civilized accommodation, a chalet or cottage could be your ticket.

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2. Stellenbosch

Stellenbosch was established in 1679, making it the second oldest town in South Africa. One of the main reasons it made this list was due to the incredible wine route it contains – 44 cellars can be found in what has been dubbed ‘Cabernet country’. If you’re a fan of wine, be sure to stop by some of the cellars to experience tastings and fine dining within the beautiful gardens.

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1. Swartland

Tucked away within a secluded stretch on the Western Cape, Swartland houses one of the most extensive and pristine beaches in South Africa. The area is also well known for its vast vineyards and the sparse fields that burst into wild flowers during the spring, which have become something of a tourist attraction.

Top 5 Best Places to visit in South Africa

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5. Hermanus

A popular seaside down situated two hours from Cape Town on the Western Cape, Hermanus is most famous for being a whale watchers dream. Between August and November, whales can be seen every day along the coastal area of the town. If whale watching is too serene for your tastes, try your hand at cage diving with Great White Sharks on the nearby Dyer Island!

 Photobucket

4. Garden Route

One of the most beautiful scenic routes in South Africa, the Garden Route is located on the south-eastern coast between Mossel Bay and Storms River. The route is home to ten different nature reserves that house almost 300 species of birds as well as seals, dolphins and whales. The best way to experience the trip is to hire a car, although you could also catch a ride on Africa’s last remaining passenger steam train, the Outeniqua Choo-Tjoe.

 Photobucket

3. Kruger National Park

Kruger is Africa’s oldest wildlife park, established in 1898. If you’re after a classic safari tour, the park boasts the highest variety of wildlife in Africa including hippos, giraffes, cheetah, crocodiles and more. If you’re after a camping experience, there are plenty of camp sites and bushveld camps to set up at or if you’re looking for more civilized accommodation, a chalet or cottage could be your ticket.

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2. Stellenbosch

Stellenbosch was established in 1679, making it the second oldest town in South Africa. One of the main reasons it made this list was due to the incredible wine route it contains – 44 cellars can be found in what has been dubbed ‘Cabernet country’. If you’re a fan of wine, be sure to stop by some of the cellars to experience tastings and fine dining within the beautiful gardens.

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1. Swartland

Tucked away within a secluded stretch on the Western Cape, Swartland houses one of the most extensive and pristine beaches in South Africa. The area is also well known for its vast vineyards and the sparse fields that burst into wild flowers during the spring, which have become something of a tourist attraction.

South African Wine Regions

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There  is more than meets the eye in South Africa. The safaris and the scenery are beautiful but it’s sometimes a hidden treasure that can really steal your breath. South Africa is increasingly making it’s name for the popular wine regions. The wine regions are primarily nestled in the valleys between the mountains which makes for perfect scenery.


South Africa may be considered a ‘new region’ for wine but grapes for harvest have been grown in the wine country since the first European settlers arrived. In 1688 French Huguenots fleeing religious persecution in their homeland settled in the cape and brought their expertise in viniculture with them.

There are so many regions to visit, your hardest job will be picking where to go! If you are limited for time the two most popular locations are Stellenbosch & Franschoek.


Stellenbosch

Tourism Stellenbosh’s website says:

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“Stellenbosch is without doubt one of the prettiest little towns in the whole of South Africa. Situated at the head of the Eerste (First) River Valley, it was one of the first valleys to be settled in. The area is full of charming scenes and rich in history.

This visual effect of Stellenbosch is of course, compounded by the fact that the town is surrounded by spectacular mountains and some of the world’s most famous vineyards adding to the town and region’s attractiveness to the local and international tourist.”

Franschoek

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The Franschoek valley is a small but significant region, inland (to the west) of Stellenbosch. Surrounded by the spooky-sounding Drakenstein mountains, the wide variety of soils and relatively high rainfall permits production of a wide variety of wine styles. It’s a hotter region than Stellenbosch, and with its profusion of trendy restaurants it can rightfully claim to be the gourmet capital of the winelands. An easy day trip from Cape Town.

Remember that drinking and driving is a heavily fined offense in South Africa. If you plan on tasting and drinking alot, rather opt for a guided tour with a driver.

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South African Wine Regions

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There  is more than meets the eye in South Africa. The safaris and the scenery are beautiful but it’s sometimes a hidden treasure that can really steal your breath. South Africa is increasingly making it’s name for the popular wine regions. The wine regions are primarily nestled in the valleys between the mountains which makes for perfect scenery.


South Africa may be considered a ‘new region’ for wine but grapes for harvest have been grown in the wine country since the first European settlers arrived. In 1688 French Huguenots fleeing religious persecution in their homeland settled in the cape and brought their expertise in viniculture with them.

There are so many regions to visit, your hardest job will be picking where to go! If you are limited for time the two most popular locations are Stellenbosch & Franschoek.


Stellenbosch

Tourism Stellenbosh’s website says:

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“Stellenbosch is without doubt one of the prettiest little towns in the whole of South Africa. Situated at the head of the Eerste (First) River Valley, it was one of the first valleys to be settled in. The area is full of charming scenes and rich in history.

This visual effect of Stellenbosch is of course, compounded by the fact that the town is surrounded by spectacular mountains and some of the world’s most famous vineyards adding to the town and region’s attractiveness to the local and international tourist.”

Franschoek

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The Franschoek valley is a small but significant region, inland (to the west) of Stellenbosch. Surrounded by the spooky-sounding Drakenstein mountains, the wide variety of soils and relatively high rainfall permits production of a wide variety of wine styles. It’s a hotter region than Stellenbosch, and with its profusion of trendy restaurants it can rightfully claim to be the gourmet capital of the winelands. An easy day trip from Cape Town.

Remember that drinking and driving is a heavily fined offense in South Africa. If you plan on tasting and drinking alot, rather opt for a guided tour with a driver.

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