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Don't Miss These Top 20 Places on Your Visit to South Africa

Image courtesy of G Adventures

South Africa is a country of beauty and mystery. Discover pristine beaches, wildlife sanctuaries, marine parks, and cosmopolitan cities in this guide to the 20 most beautiful places in South Africa.

1. Cape Town

Nestled by grand Table Mountain, Cape Town is the symbolic heart of South Africa. Rich with markets, commercial districts and the panoramic views of the Cape of Good Hope, no trip to South Africa is complete without a trip to this cosmopolitan centre.

2. Robben Island

Just off the shore of Cape Town, Robben Island was once home to the jail where Nelson Mandela was kept as a political prisoner. Nowadays, it’s a popular tourist destination where visitors can catch a glimpse of the history of a nation.

3. Johannesburg

South Africa’s financial hub, Johannesburg also boasts numerous cultural attractions, including the African Craft Market, Apartheid Museum, and the Cradle of Humankind where visitors can see fossil exhibits and dive into the paleontological delights of the very home of human history.

4. Durban

South Africa’s third largest city is a great place to unwind, with sunshine almost every day of the year and beautiful beaches to take a dip. Historically, there's also former battlefields from the Anglo-Zulu and Anglo-Boer wars.

5. Western Cape Winelands

Rolling valleys swept with vineyards and picturesque countryside backed by towering mountains, South Africa’s premier wine district is only a two hour drive from Cape Town.

6. Hermanus

A coastal town within the Western Cape Winelands, the quaint beauty of this small town is matched by the opportunity to experience stunning whale watching.

7. Zululand

Discover tribal lands and farming communities in Zululand. Located between the Dolphin Coast and Richard’s Bay this is an opportunity to experience the traditional ways of the Zulu people.

8. Coffee Bay

Wild and unspoilt, Coffee Bay is nestled between East London and Port Edward, offering up sandy beaches, coves, am easy going surf lifestyle and the traditional home of the Xhosa people.

9. Cedarberg

The name comes from local cedar trees, but it's the magnificent red sandstone formations that truly distinguish this part of South Africa. With over 250 kilometers of walking track, it's an outdoor lover's dream.

10. Magoebaskloof

The 'land of the silver mist’ is abundant with rainforest, mountains, and green hills. Located at the north eastern tip of Drakensberg, it's another must see for outdoor adventurers.

11. Blyde River Canyon

The main attraction of this snaking river Canyon is the Bourke's Luck potholes. Hewn by centuries of water flow, these bizarre formations of rock offer up a great opportunity for photographers.

12. Elephant Coast Wetlands

Pristine coastal wetlands teeming with birdlife and unspoilt beaches. Go scuba diving and see turtles and marine life, or shoulder a day pack and hike this magical South African wilderness.  

13. Inanda Mountain Viewpoint

Hidden a short way out of Durban, the view over Inanda Dam is spectacular, with Umhlanga visible on a clear day. A top spot for bird watching, grabbing a few snaps or just whiling away a few hours in peaceful serenity.

14. Riemvasmaak Hot Springs

Nestled against the Namibian border just outside Kakamas, you’ll discover hot springs set within huge granite cliffs. Home to the Damara and Koranna people who maintain an eco-tourism adventure, this is a trek into the wilderness that reaps its own rewards.

15. The Lake District

Discover 270 lakes within a 20 kilometre radius. Stunning birdlife, including over 20,000 flamingos and centered around South Africa’s largest freshwater lake, Lake Chrissie, this is a gorgeous and largely unexplored part of the South African countryside.

16. Mountain Zebra Park

One of the lesser known national parks in South Africa, this unspoilt reserve is located in the Eastern Cape near the town of Cradock. This is one of the few places where you can find the endangered Cape Mountain Zebra. A population of about 300 dwell here, which is remarkable considering the species was all but extinct when the park opened in 1937.

17. Pondoland Marine Protected Area

Located on the Wild Coast of the Eastern Cape, south of Durban, it’s almost 100 kilometers of pristine coastland between Mzamba River and Umzimvubu River. Remote, diverse and spectacularly beautiful, it’s one of the world’s largest concentrations of large marine mammals. If dolphin and whale watching is on your list, Pondoland Marine Protected Area should be too.

18. The Quiver Tree Forest

Just outside Nieuwoudtville in the Northern Cape, this is the largest colony of Aloe Dichotoma, the Quiver Tree. Located in a protected wildflower reserve, the Quiver tree is a must see, not just for its unique beauty and solitude, but as their numbers dwindle from climate change, they might not be around for much longer.

19. Tshukudu Game Reserve

Discover the ‘big 5’ in this 5000 acre large game park just by the Drakensberg Mountains. By day you traverse the bushland and by night watch the sunset from the patio of your bush lodge.

20. Knysna

Located on the Knysna Lagoon, this small, picturesque township is a great place to both unwind and discover. The Featherbed Nature Reserve is just across the lagoon and there are outdoor restaurants and unique locales to inspire and pamper the lucky visitor.

Start your South African adventure today

With so much to see and do in South Africa, there’s no better way to get around than by chartered helicopter. Our helicopters offer a comprehensive range of services. Departing from Cape Town International Airport, you can see everything South Africa has to offer in style and convenience. Book a private charter with ExecuJet today.

Posted on Nov 20, 2017 | Tags: Blog

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