Why go to South Africa?

No other country in Africa, and few anywhere else in the world, offer a diversity of attractions to rival South Africa.

South Africa is one of the continent’s finest Big Five destinations. The likes of the Kruger National Park and Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Game Reserve have all the amenities and attractions one would come to expect from world-class wildlife destinations. While adjoining private reserves such as Sabi Sand and Phinda rank among the world’s most luxurious venues for all-inclusive guided safaris. Importantly, when it comes to families with young children, South Africa is unique in that several of its most alluring Big Five reserves - for instance Madikwe, Pilanesberg and Addo Elephant National Park - lie within regions that are 100% free of malaria.

A lion in the Kruger National Park The lion is the king of the Big Five

South Africa is remarkable when it comes to the ‘smaller stuff’. Indeed, some ecologists regard it to be the world’s third most important country in terms of overall biodiversity, thanks to its unusually high level of endemism. The tiny Cape Floral Kingdom, centred on Cape Town, contains something like 5% of the world’s plant species, two-thirds of which occur nowhere else on the planet.

fynbos Fynbos is one of the most diverse species of flora on the planet | Credit: PhantomForest.com

Wildlife aside, South Africa’s 2,500km coast line is one of the most varied in the world. Split between the warm Indian Ocean and cooler Atlantic, it is studded with idyllic sun-kissed swimming beaches, but also embraces everything from the subtropical forested dunes and coral reefs of iSimangaliso Wetland Park to the craggy windswept cliffs of the Cape and Robberg Peninsulas.

Why go to South Africa_Cape Peninsula Cape Point in the Cape Peninsula is the meeting point of the Atlantic and Indian oceans | Credit: SowetoTour.co.za

South Africa today displays a unique cultural blend of African, European and Asian influences. There’s the brash economic powerhouse of Johannesburg and its altogether more stately coastal counterpart Cape Town, as well as the curry houses of Indian-influenced Durban, and the French vinicultural tradition and Dutch-derived architecture that characterises the winelands around Stellenbosch. Elsewhere, traditional Zulu and Ndebele cultural villages pay homage to the country’s indigenous cultural diversity, as does the incomparable wealth of prehistoric rock art found in the uKhahlamba-Drakensberg.

A significant part of modern South Africa’s fascination is the immense progress it has made as a unified nation since the first democratic election was held there in 1994, a progression placed in sobering historical perspective by visit to Johannesburg’s Apartheid Museum or Cape Town’s District Six Museum. At the opposite end of the immediacy scale, the three-million-year-long hominid fossil record preserved in the ancient limestone caverns of Gauteng’s Cradle of Humankind has no peer elsewhere in the world.

All in all, South Africa is a country like no other.


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Popular South Africa Safaris

These popular itineraries can be customised to match your budget and travel dates

 | Thornybush Game Reserve Safari

Thornybush Game Reserve Safari

Enjoy the city life in Johannesburg and track the Big Five in the Thornybush Game Reserve...

 | Big Cat safari in the Kruger National Park

Big Cat safari in the Kruger National Park

Discover the Big Cats in the Kruger National Park and enjoy the bustling harbour, world-class beaches and top-notch vineyards in Cape Town...

 | Midlands meander in South Africa

Midlands meander in South Africa

Explore the Eastern Cape, Lesotho and KwaZulu Natal...

Aerial View of Sun City | Sun City & Madikwe Luxury Safari (SA 6 days)

Sun City and Madikwe Luxury Safari

From Sun City's hedonistic pleasures to the majesty of nature at Madikwe Game Reserve, this journey combines the best of two very different worlds...

 | Mauritius and South Africa honeymoon safari

Mauritius and South Africa honeymoon safari

Start your trip in South Africa and finish in Mauritius. Experience the stunning beaches and the Big Five in the Phinda Private Game Reserve. ...

 | South Africa and Botswana safari

South Africa and Botswana safari

Experience the best of two of southern Africa's gems ...

 | Walking the Wild Coast of South Africa

Walking the Wild Coast of South Africa

Designed to offer a traditional hiking experience, but without the heavy bags, this "slackpacking" adventure is great for small groups or families. ...

 | Luxury South Africa to Zimbabwe safari

Luxury South Africa to Zimbabwe safari

Spot the Big Five in Thornybush Private Game Reserve and enjoy the majesty of Zimbabwe's roaring Victoria Falls ...

 | 5 Day Greater Kruger & Sabi Sands safari

5 Day Greater Kruger & Sabi Sands safari

Enjoy an authentic African safari. Game viewing possibilities are unparalleled and include the Big Five in the Sabi Sands and white lions in the Timbavati Nature Reserve....

Mountain Walk | Deluxe Victoria Falls, Cape Town and Hermanus Odyssey

Deluxe Victoria Falls, Cape Town and Hermanus Odyssey

Experience a safari adventure that combines the very best of Victoria Falls with the undeniable highlights of Cape Town and the Whale Coast....