Here are just 10 things you need to experience as a tourist in South Africa
1. Kruger National Park
No time in South Africa is complete without a visit to a game reserve. And where better than the iconic Kruger National Park. With options to suit all budgets, it may be your last chance to see these majestic animals in the wild for a long time.
2. Table Mountain
Whether you climb all the way to the top or take the cable car, getting to the top of Table Mountain is essential. The whole experience, the stunning views and the cute dassies combine to offer one of the most spectacular experiences as a tourist in South Africa.
Taking a wine tour around the Cape Winelands is a must. You can appoint a designated driver or book an organised tour, but make sure you do it. With so many vineyards and restaurants, you’ll be spoilt for choice.
During the winter and spring months, the southern right whales gather in Hermanus as it is their breeding grounds. Seeing whales and their calves is simply breathtaking and Hermanus is recognised by the WWF as one of the best places in the world to see whales.
A visit to Knysna should be on everyone’s list. From the cute waterfront to the imposing Knysna Heads and the surrounding towns and nature reserves, Knysna is the perfect holiday destination in South Africa.
6. Thula Thula
If elephants are your thing, don’t leave South Africa without visiting Thula Thula in Kwa-Zulu Natal. Made famous by the work of Lawrence Anthony and his heart-warming book ‘The Elephant Whisperer’ this is the place to go to get up close and personal with some pretty famous elephants. You can stay overnight or just visit for the day.
7. Apartheid Museum
Every South African should visit the Apartheid Museum in Johannesburg. Showcasing permanent and temporary exhibitions, it aims to show the rise and fall of apartheid and what life in apartheid South Africa was really like.
8. Cango Caves
Being South Africa’s oldest tourist destination this should definitely be on your list. Discovered in the late 1700s just outside Oudtshoorn, the caves have been visited as a tourist attraction since 1806.
9. Boulders Beach
No Cape Town tourist trail is complete without a stop at Boulder’s Beach. Over the years the beach access has become more restricted to help protect the penguins and there is now an entry fee too as it is managed by SANParks. Getting up close and personal with the penguins is amazing and shouldn’t be missed, especially in summer when the chicks start to moult. No selfie sticks allowed though!
The majestic mountains of the Drakensberg are our final recommendation for being a tourist in your own country. Visit in winter and you may well get to have snowball fights and build snowmen! Visit in summer and enjoy walks through nature and experience the native flora and fauna – just watch out for those baboons!