South Africa South Africa

South Africa is a vast country with an incredible variety in landscapes, people, traditions, languages, cuisines and more. The country is often referred to as the “Rainbow Nation” due to its population diversity. The country is also renowned for its wines, so make sure not to miss these while you are here!

While big cities such as Cape Town and Johannesburg can look quite first worldly, most of the country has remained underdeveloped. This is a perfect example of the economic inequality that exists in the country.

South Africa is an ideal destination for those interested in nature and it is incredibly varied in terms of landscapes. The country boasts a large number of National Parks such as Kruger, Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, which is located in the desert, Addo Elephant National Park, Simangaliso Wetland Park and many more. It is also a great place to spot the “Big Five” (African lion, African elephant, Cape buffalo, African leopard, and White/Black rhinoceros) as well as a wide range of other species.

All in all, South Africa is an ideal place to start if you wish to travel in southern Africa and get a good insight into the region.

Featured

Wild and Scenic South Africa

See the sights of Pretoria before heading out of the city to enjoy ‘Big 5’ game viewing in the Kruger National Park. Discover the African bush ...
from
£865
/ person
duration
4 days
Featured

Big Cat Photographic Safari

Explore the world-renowned Sabi Sand Game Reserve from a different angle, and let your experienced guide get you in position for the perfect photo of ...
from
£1860
/ person
duration
5 days
Featured

South African Wild Coast and Garden Route

Explore the Wild Coast and the Garden Route, view the home town of South Africa’s beloved Madiba, the Storms River Bridge, as well as an ...
from
£835
/ person
duration
8 days
Featured

Garden Route Essentials

Explore the Garden Route from Port Elizabeth, visiting Tsitsikamma, standing on the Storms River Bridge, Oudtshoorn sights and the Cape Winelands....
from
£345
/ person
duration
3 days
Featured

South Africa Garden Route Journey

Embark on an oyster cruise on the Knysna Estuary and enjoy whale and dolphin watching on an ocean safari. Travel from Oudtshoorn to Cape Town along ...
from
£780
/ person
duration
4 days
Featured

Cape Kaleidoscope South Africa

Live the sights and sounds of the Klein Karoo; meander along the Garden Route and send a postcard from the iconic Post Office Tree. View the ‘...
from
£1005
/ person
duration
6 days
Featured

South Africa Cape, Winelands and Safari

This vast country is undoubtedly one of the most culturally and geographically diverse places on earth. Fondly known by locals as the ‘Rainbow Nation’, ...
from
£5590
/ person
duration
9 days
Featured

South Africa Battlefields, Safari & Beach

This vast country is undoubtedly one of the most culturally and geographically diverse places on earth. Fondly known by locals as the ‘Rainbow Nation’, ...
from
£2560
/ person
duration
15 days
Featured

South Africa Self Drive

This vast country is undoubtedly one of the most culturally and geographically diverse places on earth. Fondly known by locals as the ‘Rainbow Nation’, ...
from
£5400
/ person
duration
17 days
Featured

Winelands and Garden Route Discovery

A 5 day discovery of the secluded Cape Winelands, the road less travelled, Garden Route sites and guest house and boutique hotel hospitality experiences...
from
£815
/ person
duration
5 days
Featured

Best of Victoria Falls and the Mother City

From the majesty of the earth’s greatest waterfall, to the wonder of a modern capital steeped in nature, this is a journey of pure ...
from
£3820
/ person
duration
7 days
Featured

Southern Africa: Wild Bush to Island Heaven

Welcome to a romantic escape in three of the most beautiful natural environments Southern Africa has to offer. Adventure through the andBeyond Phinda and Sabi Sands ...
from
£12040
/ person
duration
11 days
Featured

South Africa Safari and Mauritian Island Adventure

Get a taste for southern Africa in an adventure like no other, combining the urban excitement of Johannesburg, the heart-pumping thrill of safari and the ...
from
£8540
/ person
duration
11 days
Featured

Southern Africa: Romance in the Heart of Nature

Combine sea and safari in this journey that showcases Southern Africa’s dazzling natural wonders. Experience some of Africa’s finest game viewing in ...
from
£7995
/ person
duration
8 days
Featured

Old World Safari Camp and Pristine Island Retreat

Take in one of South Africa’s best and largest game reserves at Sabi Sands, with an incredible array of wildlife and exceptional leopard sightings ...
from
£7770
/ person
duration
8 days
Featured

African Safari and Island Romance – Kirkman’s Kamp

Discover South Africa and Mozambique in style with this exclusive getaway. Delve deep into bush habitats and swim through luxurious blue waters as you explore the ...
from
£7425
/ person
duration
8 days
Featured

Adventure Take Over – South Africa and Botswana

Immerse yourself in the magical beauty of two amazing Southern African countries. Be captivated in South Africa and Botswana on this 10 day itinerary. Explore the ...
from
£10280
/ person
duration
10 days

Game Ranger Training Course Abroad in South Africa, Sidbury

Get an intriguing behind the scenes look at the inner workings of a well established Game Reserve, and work towards obtaining the accredited FGASA Level 1 ...
from
£3495
/ person
duration
56 days

Photography Volunteer Project Abroad in South Africa, Port Elizabeth

Teach children photography, from township areas, giving them a chance to learn about this exciting medium whilst also training them to become self-sustainable professional photographers. ...
from
£1195
/ person
durations start from
28 days

Teaching Volunteer Project Abroad in South Africa, Port Elizabeth

Volunteer in South Africa on our teaching project and help educate children in English as well as maths, science, sports and other subjects, providing much needed ...
from
£995
/ person
durations start from
28 days

Care Work Volunteer Project Abroad in South Africa, Port Elizabeth

Volunteer in South Africa on our care work project and help look after orphans and vulnerable children at community centres providing much needed support and love. ...
from
£995
/ person
durations start from
28 days

Sports Management Internship in South Africa, Port Elizabeth

Gain real life experience in the sports charity sector and support our great team in South Africa. Take part in local marketing efforts, structuring up timetables ...
from
£995
/ person
durations start from
28 days

Multi-Sports Tour in South Africa, Port Elizabeth

Take your school or club team to South Africa on a sports tour with a difference. Play against local school and club teams and help coach ...
from
£695
/ person
durations start from
7 days

Tennis Coaching Volunteer Project in South Africa, Port Elizabeth

Volunteer in South Africa as a tennis coach and give young tennis players the chance to play and develop in the sport they love. Coaching tennis ...
from
£995
/ person
durations start from
28 days

Swimming Teaching Volunteer Project in South Africa, Port Elizabeth

Coach and teach swimming to children in South Africa, teaching them the swimming skills to stay safe in the swimming pool and at the beach. This ...
from
£995
/ person
durations start from
28 days

Hockey Coaching Volunteer Project in South Africa, Port Elizabeth

Coach young hockey players in the townships of Port Elizabeth and give them the opportunity to play hockey in a fun and enjoyable way. Working as ...
from
£995
/ person
durations start from
28 days

Football Coaching Volunteer Project in South Africa, Port Elizabeth

Share your passion for football by coaching football to disadvantaged South African children. Help organise football matches and coaching sessions for keen football players in schools ...
from
£995
/ person
durations start from
28 days

Basketball Coaching Project in South Africa, Port Elizabeth

Volunteer in South Africa as a volunteer basketball coach, teaching the sport to keen basketball players who do not have the opportunity to play and train ...
from
£995
/ person
durations start from
28 days

Cricket Coaching Volunteer Project in South Africa, Port Elizabeth

Coach cricket to township children in South Africa and share your passion for cricket with young athletes who are desperate to play the sport. Our cricket ...
from
£995
/ person
durations start from
28 days

Rugby Coaching Project in South Africa, Port Elizabeth

Coach rugby as a volunteer rugby coach in South Africa, teaching young players the skills and team disciplines to develop in the sport. If you love ...
from
£995
/ person
durations start from
28 days

Netball Coaching Project in South Africa, Port Elizabeth

Volunteer in South Africa on our netball coaching project and help children play and develop in the sport they love by working as a dedicated volunteer ...
from
£995
/ person
durations start from
28 days

Big 5 Conservation Experience in South Africa, Sidbury

Get face to face with Africa’s Big Five and immerse yourself in nature on a volunteer conservation project in South Africa and make a real ...
from
£995
/ person
durations start from
14 days

South Africa Surf Instructor Course, Cape Town to Durban (ISA Level 1)

A surf experience that will see you take in the best waves and must visit sights of South Africa. You’ll make new friends, ride ...

Accommodation Examples

Quick Facts

Name

Republic of South Africa

Population

55 million

Capital

Cape Town (legislative), Bloemfontein (judicial), Pretoria (executive)

Language

English, Afrikaans, Zulu, Xhosa, Tswana, Northern Sotho, Venda, Tsonga, Swati, Ndebele

Currency

South African Rand

Time Zone

UTC +2

Flag South Africa

Climate

The climate in South Africa ranges from area to area. The southwestern corner of the country receives a Mediterranean climate, the northeastern regions are subtropical, the interior plateau is quite temperate and even a small area in the northwest has a desert climate.

Winter: South Africa is situated at a high altitude and during winters, temperatures can get very low. The coldest months are June, July and August.

Summer: During the summer months, most of the country receives rainfall and thunderstorms during the afternoon are not uncommon. Rain is heavier and more frequent in the eastern part of the country than in the west. The only exception to this rule is the Western Cape area, where rain is more common during the winter.

Culture

South Africa is often dubbed the “Rainbow Nation” due to its multicultural diversity. While 80% of the population is made up of Black South Africans, they all belong to different ethnic groups. To add up to this, South Africa is extremely diverse due to its colonial past. A large number of Afrikaans (descendants of Dutch settlers) reside here, as well as many British descendants. Moreover, in 1600s, Germans, Portuguese and French Huguenots brought in a large number of slaves from India and what is now Indonesia. Islam and Hindu traditions are also a huge part of daily life in South Africa.

South Africa is so diverse that there are eleven officially recognized languages in the country, English being one of them. Another one of the official languages is Afrikaans, which is derived from Dutch.

Gastronomy

The food in South Africa is one of the highlights of most visitor’s time in the country. A great variety of restaurants serve both modern and traditional food. It is almost impossible to write about the cuisine of South Africa in brief as it is incredibly varied due to its multicultural sources. The diversity of dishes is a great reflection of the cultural differences in the country. To summarize a bit, let’s divide it into two categories:

Traditional cookery, which is mostly prepared by indigenous people and roots back to the precolonial period. The food is generally cooked over an open fire and meat is one of the main ingredients, either stewed or grilled. Typical dishes include morogo, chakalaka, amadumbe and don’t forget to try tripe, a traditional treat that is considered a regional delicacy in the Cape.

Settlers cookery, which was introduced during and after the colonization periods. A popular style of South African cuisine is called “Cape Dutch” and is characterized by its use of spices. A famous dish, which is often regarded as the national dish, is babotie. It consists of spiced minced meat baked with an egg topping.

Transportation

By Plane
South Africa is well developed in terms of inland air travel, with airports in all major cities. Numerous domestic airlines operate within the country and it is often the fastest way to get around albeit not the cheapest.

By Bus
Bus is a great alternative to get around the country, although distances are often great. Major companies such as Greyhound and Intercape Mainliner operate between major cities with stops along the way.

Another option for you is Baz Bus, which offers a hop-on-hop-off service along popular tourist routes from one major city to another major city. It will also pick you up and drop you off at many accommodation options (including hostels and guest houses).

By Train
Trains are a another alternative to travel around the country, with a national rail available. Budget options are available as well.

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