Today you hear a lot of chatter about people wanting to traveling to Africa. What is it that make this such an unforgettable place? Could it be that Africa has some of the prime safari country to see wildebeests & antelopes in Botswana perhaps? Or maybe it's the largest curtain of water at the amazing Victoria Falls. We think it's probably the chance to ride in a safari jeep seeking out the Big Five. Lions, leopards, elephants, rhinos & buffalos are considered the Big Five.
You've probably already started researching more about South Africa. Our post will help enhance all your information.
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Getting around in South Africa
Cape Town photo [courtesy of Collette]
Transportation in South Africa
Not as remote as you might think. There's cars to rent, taxis, bus or even trains. Why not take a relaxing train ride? The cuisine is prepared by executive chefs. The windows are large enough to provide the perfect view for picture taking. The suites are just as luxurious with comfy furnishings.
South Africa is more of a mixed diverse culture with more than 45 million people. The people here speak both English and Arikaano. For more than two centuries African culture has been known for its music, art and dance. The best areas to see the local culture is in the local markets. Traditional beadwork will reflect the individuals history.
Addo National Park photo [courtesy of On the Go Tours]
One of the best places to spot the "Big Five" is at Krugar National Park. If you like camping there are tours that provide this as part of the journey. Other parks below provide great tours too!
- Sabi Sand GR
- Mala Mala Gr
- Phinda Game Reserve
- Addo National Park (over 600 elephants & 3rd largest park)
Keep your eyes peeled at all times to spot some of the animals. They maybe lazing in the trees or submerged in the water. Africa is a fantastic country with many options for tours from self-guided, guided self-guided, to overland tours.
Every trip you take to new destinations bring great food experiences. Here is a few of the popular foods in Africa to try.
Bobotie which consists of minced meat served with egg, break & milk topping. A signature dish in the Cape Malay region.
Bunny Chow curry-filled bread found in Durban.
Then there is always the popular BBQ meal of Braai, a memorable culinary experience.
Travel Tip: There's a saying "if you can peel it you can eat it"
African food is rich in color & flavour. South Africa is more developed than other parts of Africa and provide a higher food hygiene. Always still use common sense. We suggest as in most country to follow where the locals eat. You usually can't go wrong. If you've had great service tipping would be a great gesture to show how much you appreciated the meal you just devoured.
The official currency in Africa is the South African Rand. Before we travel we order currency for the country we are travelling to. Sometimes this can take up to a week depending on the currency you need. A local currency exchange place usually provides a better rate than the bank.
One of the 7 wonders of the world is Table Mountain. Stand on top of the mountain top for the best landscape views at Drakensberg. Explore more of Cape Town & Krugar Park on a safari tour.
Nelson Mandela was the 1st black president in 1994. He also spent many years on Robben Island incarcerated. Robben Island use to be a prison up until 1996, but now is an UNESCO Heritage Site. If you have a desire to see the old prison you can search here. www.robben-island.org.za
Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens
One of the most beautiful gardens in the world with over 52,000km to explore. A walk on the Tree Canopy Walkway which is built of a steel & wood bridge will surely delight you with magnificent views of the fragrant gardens. Garden lovers will enjoy this area. Make sure to have your cameras ready with extra batteries for this tour. Find out more about the garden tours.
Krugar National Park
This famous park has lots of guided tours to see elephants, lions, leopards, cheetahs, rhinos, buffalo, giraffes, hippos & zebras. For bird enthusiasts you'll love that it has over 500 species. The best time to visit this park is August-October. June & July are relatively good months as well. Find a tour here South Africa Nature Tour.
photo [courtesy of Collette]
Victoria Falls located on the border of Zambia & Zimbabwe in Southern Africa attracts many visitors per year. The falls is the largest in the world at 360 ft high and 1 mile wide. It beauty surrounded by protected wilderness is located along the Zambezi River.
Boland is where you will find the best wine vineyards producing some of South Africa's finest wines. Stellenbosch the 2nd oldest town in South Africa gives the travel the best of both worlds. Not only do you get to sample some amazing wines, but you can tour the historic building from the 1700's. Travelling 28km from the Cape Town Airport will take you to see some of the most spectacular scenery in Africa.
The Nile River
The Nile River is the longest river in Africa at approximately 6,600km long flowing down from the mountains. Lake Victoria & Lake Tana are the major sources that feed the Nile River. Many animals live along this river including crocodiles, hippos, turtles, wildebeests, and hundreds of birds.
In Botswana you'll have a great chance of spotting many giraffe's, cheetahs, and hyenas. Your whole family will love camping in the outdoors in style with Luxury camps. In the winter months, many herds of elephants and buffalo can be found grazing on the river banks of Chobe National Park. In Okavango seasonal flooding brings in lots of wildlife on the Okavango Delta.
Best time to visit
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Kruger National Park
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High Season: October to March
Low Season: April to September
Best weather: April-May, Sept-October
Worst weather: June to August
In September the first rains start. October to November it will rain more often & December-February are the wettest months with torrential downpours.
What to Pack
Need some help deciding what to take on your next adventure?
- light weight fabrics
- walking shoes
- warm jacket (mornings can be cool)
- layer clothes
- camera (extra batteries)
- bug spray
- water bottle
- sun glasses
- rain gear (depending on the season)
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I would love to hear about your experiences in South Africa if you've been there. Leave your thoughts in the comments below.