Xan here! Having traveled to South Africa, I can tell you that it leaves an indelible impression on you. The beauty of the land, the varied cultures and of course, the awe of seeing wildlife in its natural habitat is something I hope everyone can experience in their lifetime. It may seem like a dream or bucket list trip, but there are many options for accommodations and activities that are quite reasonable, especially with the very favorable exchange rate as of late. You will create such amazing and lasting memories with your family to share for years to come.
Obviously, a visit to South Africa wouldn’t be complete without including a safari at some point. There are several private reserves that are very suitable for families – whether it’s Sabi Sand or Timbavati in Kruger, or the malaria-free Madikwe, there is a trek and accommodation style for everyone.
In Cape Town, you can learn about the different cultures that make-up this vibrant city on the sea. From township visits to a tour Robben Island, offering you and your children valuable insight into the country’s fairly recent and historical changes, and of course, a trek to the top of Table Mountain for it’s stunning, panoramic views, you will find yourself falling for the Mother City.
For those of you who have the time to see a bit more of the country outside of the Cape Town and safari stops, you will love a drive along the Garden Route, so named for the lush flora and fauna, dunes and seascapes to be found along this part of the Cape.
While everyone thinks only of the Big 5 of the savannah, there is another Big 5 you should add to your list – the marine Big 5 including whales, sharks, dolphins, penguins and seals. Make your way to Hermanus, on the Western Cape for a marine biologist guided tour to Dyer Island to witness these wonders of the water.
If it’s a little beach time you’re after, you must visit Camps Bay. While the water is a bit brisk, you’ll find wide, sandy stretches, dramatic landscapes and blazing sunsets, plus a vibrant café culture.
Another, lesser-known game trekking option is in the Green Kalahari in the Northern Cape. An area of climatic extremes making for exciting animal migrations, you won’t see all of the Big 5 here, but its unique and colorful vistas make it a great combination to a more traditional safari.
While not technically in South Africa, but rather on the border of Zimbabwe and Zambia, Victoria Falls is either a thrilling jumping-off point for a South African adventure, or the stunning conclusion to one. The spectacular and awe-inspiring beauty of this “curtain of falling water” will leave you amazed with its grandeur.