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Black-maned lions framed against Kalahari dunes; powdery beaches lapped by two oceans; star-studded desert skies; jagged, lush mountains – this truly is a country of astounding diversity.
South Africa is one of the continent’s best safari destinations, offering the Big Five (lion, leopard, buffalo, elephant and rhino) and more in accessible parks and reserves. You can drive right into the epic wilderness at Kruger, Kgalagadi and other parks, or join khaki-clad rangers on guided drives and walks.
South Africa’s ever-changing scenery is the perfect canvas on which to paint an activity-packed trip. Try rock climbing in the craggy Cederberg, surfing off the Eastern Cape coast, abseiling from Cape Town’s iconic Table Mountain, bungee jumping from the Garden Route’s Bloukrans Bridge, or swinging into Graskop Gorge.
If adrenaline sports aren’t your thing, opt instead for a hike: options include multi-day treks through wildlife reserves, dusty day walks in the Karoo semidesert, ‘slackpacking’ trails along the Cape coast, or an overnight hike into the sometimes snow-capped peaks of the Drakensberg.
To visit South Africa without learning about its tumultuous history would be to miss a crucial part of the country’s identity. Museums from Jo’burg to Robben Island, many including exhibits on the apartheid era, might not be lighthearted, but will help you to understand the fabric of South African society and appreciate how far the country has come.
South Africa’s landscapes are stunning, from the burning Karoo and Kalahari semideserts to the misty heights of the Drakensberg range and the massive Blyde River Canyon. Even in urban Cape Town, you need only look up to see the beautiful fynbos (indigenous flora) climbing the slopes of Table Mountain, while nearby, two of the world’s most dramatic coastal roads lead to Cape Point and Hermanus. Add the vineyards carpeting the Cape Winelands, old-growth forests along the Garden Route, wrinkly mountain ranges from the Cederberg to the Swartberg, and Indian Ocean beaches, and there’s a staggering variety to enjoy.
For more information on private jet charter and helicopter flights to or within South Africa please contact our team on +44 (0)207 993 8368 or email email@example.com
A coming-together of cultures, cuisines and landscapes, there’s nowhere quite like Cape Town, a singularly beautiful city crowned by the magnificent Table Mountain National Park.
Table Mountain National Park defines the city. The flat-topped mountain is the headline act, but there are many other equally gorgeous natural landscapes within the park’s extensive boundaries. Cultivated areas, such as the historic Company’s Garden, Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden and Green Point Urban Park, also make exploring the city a pleasure.
Human creativity is also self-evident here – it’s one of the things that made the city a World Design Capital in 2014. From the brightly painted facades of the Bo-Kaap and the bathing chalets of Muizenberg, to the Afro-chic decor of its restaurants and bars and the striking street art and innovation incubators of the East City and Woodstock, this is one great-looking metropolis.
Christian, Muslim, Jewish, Hindu and traditional African beliefs coexist peacefully in this proudly multicultural city. Given South Africa’s troubled history, such harmony has been hard-won and remains fragile: nearly everyone has a fascinating, sometimes heartbreaking story to tell. It’s a city of determined pioneers – from the Afrikaner descendants of the original Dutch colonists and the majority coloured community to the descendants of European Jewish immigrants and more recent Xhosa (isiXhosa) migrants from the Eastern Cape. They all bring unique flavours to Cape Town’s rich melting pot.
Wrenching yourself away from the magnetic mountain and all the delights of the Cape Peninsula is a challenge, but within an hour you can exchange urban landscapes for the charming towns, villages and bucolic estates of Winelands destinations, such as Stellenbosch and Franschhoek.
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Kruger National Park
Beautiful granite kopjes (hills) pepper the south, the Lebombo Mountains rise from the savannah in the east, and tropical forests cover the north of the 19,485-sq-km park.
Yes, Kruger can sometimes become crowded. And yes, you may have to wait in line to see those lions. But that’s because the vast network of roads makes Kruger one of Africa’s most accessible parks (explore on your own or take one of the plentiful guided wildlife activities) and accommodation is both plentiful and great value.
If you think the crowds may overwhelm, consider the private reserves that surround the national park. Among these is Sabi Sand, one of Africa’s finest.