South Africa Safaris, Tours & holidays

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South Africa Safari

South Africa is a country on the southernmost tip of the African continent, marked by several distinct ecosystems. Inland safari destination Kruger National Park is populated by big game. The Western Cape offers beaches, lush Winelands around Stellenbosch and Paarl, craggy cliffs at the Cape of Good Hope, forest and lagoons along the Garden Route, and the city of Cape Town, beneath flat-topped Table Mountain.

South Africa is perhaps one of the least widely thought of as a safari destination, thanks to a host of other premier attractions ranging from cosmopolitan Cape Town and the nearby Winelands to the fine beaches of the Garden Route and lofty peaks of the uKhahlamba-Drakensberg. Yet South Africa boasts some quite superb wildlife viewing destinations, offering a far greater ecological diversity than some of its neighbours. Its public reserves are particularly well suited to budget DIY safaris, while an ever-growing collection of luxurious private reserves offers concentrated Big Five viewing at the top end of the price range. A good network of surfaced roads and domestic flights allows for flexible itinerary planning, but the flagship Kruger Park and associated private reserves remain the obvious choice for first-time safarigoers, while Addo and environs are conveniently located near Port Elizabeth for those driving along the Garden Route.

How to get to South Africa

O.R. Tambo International Airport (JNB) in Johannesburg is the air transport hub of southern Africa. Onward, travel is mostly by car. Because of excellent roads and facilities in South Africa, some people choose the self-drive option. In most other cases, your local tour operator will arrange pick-up from the airport and further transportation as part of your tour package.

Other international airports are located in Cape Town and Durban, but few flights from Europe or America fly directly to either destination.

From the US there are three nonstop flights a week from New York (JFK) to Johannesburg operated by South African Airways (SAA) in partnership with United Airlines.

There are nonstop flights from Sydney (which take 12hr) and Perth (just under 10hr) to Johannesburg, with onward connections to Cape Town.

Flights from New Zealand tend to be via Sydney. South African Airways and Qantas.

Both fly nonstop to South Africa from Australia.

From London, there are nonstop flights with British Airways and South African Airways and Virgin Atlantic to Johannesburg and Cape Town.

Passport, Visa and Entry requirements for South Africa

Visitors who require a visa must apply in person and provide biometric data. All visitors must hold a passport valid for 1 month after departure and with one blank page (two if a visa is required). South African Government announced that an e-Visa system would be introduced

The health sector of South Africa

The Department of Health has overall responsibility for healthcare in the country, with specific responsibility for public-sector healthcare. The country has around 400 public hospitals and 211 private hospitals. South Africa aims to introduce a system of National Health Insurance (NHI) over a period of 10 years.

Depending on where you are emergency evacuations can be done in South Africa using Air or road transport however it might be expensive so we recommend you purchase travel and medical insurance before travelling to South Africa.

Malaria and Yellow fever vaccination for South Africa

Yellow fever vaccination certificate required for travellers aged 1 year or over arriving from countries with risk of yellow fever transmission and for travellers having transited for more than 12 hours through an airport of a country with risk of yellow fever transmission.

Travellers are advised to travel with Anti-malarial drugs or check with their doctor before travelling to South Africa.

The currency of South Africa

The rand is the official currency of South Africa. It is subdivided into 100 cents (sign: “c”).

The rand is legal tender in the common monetary area between South Africa, Eswatini, Lesotho and Namibia although the last three countries do have their own currencies pegged at par with the rand.

However being developed most internationally recognised currencies like pounds, Dollars, Euro and credit cards are accepted.

Official Language of South Africa

At least thirty-five languages indigenous to South Africa are spoken in the Republic, ten of which are official languages of South Africa: Ndebele, Pedi, Sotho, Swati, Tsonga, Tswana, Venḓa, Xhosa, Zulu and Afrikaans. The eleventh official language is English, which is the primary language used.

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Best time to travel to South Africa

The best time to travel to South Africa depends on which parts of the country you want to visit and your interests. The Cape has warm, dry weather in its summer months (November to February), for instance, but the prime whale-watching season is September and October. If you’re trying to decide when to go on safari in South Africa, the game-viewing conditions are excellent in the cooler winter months (May to September).

What to wear in South Africa

South Africans are generally casual so opt for dresses, shorts, T-shirts and light trousers. The evenings can be cooler so do bring a light sweater or jacket along, and an umbrella for summer thundershowers if you’re staying in Johannesburg.

Currently, South Africa has no dressing restrictions however if you’re going on local activities involving visiting places and people we recommend dressing appropriate and in tourist places, you can dress the way you want.

What to bring while travelling to South Africa

Here’s a brief summary of the essentials for any South Africa packing list:

  • ID documents (passport, driver’s license, and visa)
  • Money, credit cards
  • Appropriate seasonal clothing and undergarments
  • Bathing suit, sunscreen
  • Sunglasses, hat
  • Basic toiletries
  • Cameras, batteries
  • Laptop, cell phone, chargers
  • Power outlet adapter
  • Insect repellent
  • Anti-malaria medication, if desired

Car hire and driving in South Africa

To rent a car in South Africa, you must be at least 18 years old (age may vary by car category and location) and have held your license for one year. Drivers under the age of 25 may incur a young driver surcharge. Seatbelts are mandatory.

South Africans drive on the left-hand side of the road, and all signposts are written in English. It is the law to wear a seat belt at all times, and using a mobile phone when driving is prohibited. All drivers must have a valid driving licence from their country of residence.

Accommodation in South Africa

South Africa Accommodation Guide/ Book Direct and SAVE! brings you a fine selection of accommodation in South Africa to choose from, for both your holiday and business travel reservations. Whether you are planning a luxury vacation to South Africa or backpacking from region to region, the country offers a range of accommodation options to suit every budget and travelling style.

Luxury 5 star hotels and game lodges or, to suit the more budget-conscious traveller, small hotels, lodges and inns, private game reserves and lodges, luxury tented safari camps, guest houses, bed and breakfast establishments, luxury and budget self-catering accommodation in South Africa, backpackers and caravan parks and camping sites can all be found in southern Africa in the national parks and tourist attractions.

Local food of South Africa

Chakalaka is a spicy South African vegetable relish consisting of tomatoes, beans, and onions as its key ingredients, although some cooks might add various other ingredients such as carrots, bell peppers, chilis, and ginger. Originally, Chakalaka was invented in Johannesburg, where it became a staple dish.

Today, it is a key component of most South African barbecues, where it is served as a side dish accompanying meat. Some people like to serve it as a cold salad when combined with other greens. This relish is traditionally served with bread such as mealie pap, or with amasi, a type of thick sour milk.

Tipping while Travelling in South Africa

Travel introduces you to a whole new world of culture and history, and without a little background on the place, you’re visiting it can be tough to know what’s expected of you as a guest. Tipping is one of those things that is different all over the world, and it can be awkward trying to figure out etiquette and local customs.

South Africa has a tipping culture, and the general rule is we start at 10%. Many people who work in the service industry rely on these tips to make a living wage, so often tips are higher than 10%.

A game-viewing experience in South Africa is made all the more special by the guidance and service of staff members. The guides and rangers keep you safe on safari, point out the (often near-hidden) animals, and lead the experience out in the wild. The porters, housekeeping staff, and kitchen staff do everything else to make your stay exceptional. Assuming you’ve enjoyed your stay, a daily tip is not necessary. A pooled tip for the staff is a convenient way for you to reach the housekeeping, front of the house, and general staff all at once.

Further information for South Africa

We highly recommend travelling with a safari company as South Africa is big and some areas may be unsafe as they are still targeting white south Africans by some group of black South Africans as revenge against Apartheid policy so travelling alone may put you at high risk for more information contact our South African experts today for more information.

Safety of South Africa

South Africa has a high level of crime, including rape and murder. The risk of violent crime to visitors travelling to the main tourist destinations is generally low. The South African authorities priorities protecting tourists and tourism police are deployed in several towns and cities.



Addo Elephant National Park
Agulhas National Park
Ai-Ais/ Richtersveld Transfrontier Park
Augrabies Falls National Park
Bontebok National Park
Camdeboo National Park
Golden Gate Highlands National Park
Karoo National Park
Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park
Knysna National Lake Area
Kruger National Park
Mapungubwe National Park
Mokala National Park
Mountain Zebra National Park
Namaqua National Park
Table Mountain National Park
Mapungubwe National Park
Tsitsikamma National Park
West Coast National Park
Wilderness National Park
Tankwa Karoo National Park
West Coast National Park
Hluhluwe–iMfolozi Park




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Kirstenbosch national Botanical Garden
Constitutional Hill
Cape of Good Hope
Apartheid Museum
Blyde River Canyon Nature reserve
Sabi sand Game reserve
Three Rondavels view point
Madikwe Game reserve
Big hole and open mine Museum South Africa
Isimangaliso wetland park
Robben island
Adam’s calendar South Africa
African bird of prey Sanctuary South Africa
Afrikaans’s Language Monument South Africa
Birds island Nature reserve south Africa
Bokaap South Africa
Bos 400 ship wreck South Africa
Boulders beach penguin Sanctuary
Calexico vinyl lounge and restaurant
Cango caves South Africa
Cape Agulhas Manor South Africa
Chapman’s peak drive South Africa
Collectors Treasury South Africa
Cradle of mankind South Africa
District six Museum South Africa
Donkergat whaling station South Africa
Fermier south Africa
Foreshore freeway bridge South Africa
Grand central water tower South Africa
Howick falls South Africa
Huberta the Hippo south Africa
Inkwenkwezi private game reserve South Africa
Just Nuisance statue South Africa
Kaaimans crotto South Africa
Klerksdorp sheres South Africa
Lilles leaf farm Museum South Africa
Mandela house Soweto South Africa
Map of Africa south Africa
Marakele nature reserve
Monte casino Bird gardens South Africa
Motouleng caves South Africa
Mucassar beach pavilion South Africa
Museum of man and science South Africa
Mzinyathi falls South Africa
Neighbors good Market South Africa
Nelson Mandela capture site South Africa
Orlando Towers South Africa
Owl house South Africa
Ponte tower South Africa
Ronnie’s sex shop South Africa
Sani pass south Africa
Satyagraha house south Africa
Sea island South Africa
Shark cage diving in Gansbaai South Africa
South African astronomical observatory
Sterkfontein caves South Africa
Sudwala caves South Africa
Sun city resort south Africa
Sunland Baobab South Africa
Table mountains south Africa
The big pineapple south Africa
The goat tower of Fairview cheese and wine farm
The post office tree South Africa
The Sacramento cannon Monument South Africa
The shadow boxer at chancellor house South Africa
Top of Africa South Africa
Tswaing meteorite South Africa
Vredefort impact centre South Africa
Wildebeest Kuil rock art centre South Africa
Wit waters rand basin South Africa
Wood’s cycad south Africa
Wreck of Meisho maru 38 South Africa