Driving in South Africa – Embarking on a journey through Cape Town, the exquisite wineries of the Winelands, and the scenic wonders of the Garden Route defines the quintessential road trip in South Africa. This coastal drive, adorned with penguins, ostriches, whales, and lions, caters to wildlife enthusiasts. Meanwhile, wine and gourmet aficionados can indulge in the culinary delights of Winelands’ restaurants and wineries. Open countryside drives offer picturesque landscapes, from sweeping sandy beaches to dramatic mountain passes, creating an unforgettable adventure. The ultimate finale awaits with a few days immersed in the splendors of a safari.
Visit Cape Town in South Africa
Embarking on a journey through Cape Town, the exquisite wineries of the Winelands, and the scenic wonders of the Garden Route defines the quintessential road trip in South Africa. This coastal drive, adorned with penguins, ostriches, whales, and lions, caters to wildlife enthusiasts. Meanwhile, wine and gourmet aficionados can indulge in the culinary delights of Winelands’ restaurants and wineries. Open countryside drives offer picturesque landscapes, from sweeping sandy beaches to dramatic mountain passes, creating an unforgettable adventure. The ultimate finale awaits with a few days immersed in the splendors of a safari.
Visiting Garden Route
Journeying south from Oudtshoorn, the mountain road converges with the coast at George, marking the onset of the Garden Route. Here, the R62 meets the coastal motorway heading east.
Named for its indigenous fynbos flora, thriving in sandy soil, the Garden Route spans the coastline from Cape Town to Port Elizabeth. This unique flora, featuring proteas or sugarbushes, blossoms in spring, creating a one-of-a-kind spectacle.
Dedicating at least three nights to the Plettenberg Bay area, with its expansive pristine beaches, offers excellent opportunities for swimming, often accompanied by resident dolphin pods. Robberg Beach hosts thousands of seals, and the Robberg Peninsula provides scenic walks, potentially revealing whales and dolphins or offering closer encounters through boat trips.
East of Plettenberg Bay, The Crags beckons with animal reserves showcasing elephants and monkeys, along with Birds of Eden, the world’s largest free-flight aviary.
For a memorable stay on the Garden Route, I recommend Emily Moon, owned by an antique dealer who adorned the guesthouse with treasures collected from Africa and Asia. Nestled outside Plettenberg Bay, the location boasts river views meandering towards the ocean, creating a superb setting.
Safari with Self Drive in South Africa
Venturing beyond the Garden Route, the Eastern Cape boasts numerous safari reserves. Choose between the renowned Addo Elephant National Park and private game reserves like Kwandwe, Amakhala, Shamwari, and Kariega.
Initially established to safeguard elephants, Addo Elephant National Park has expanded its conservation efforts to reintroduce various indigenous species over the past 15 years.
For an exceptional safari experience, Elephant House, a splendid guesthouse near the park entrance, offers 4×4 game drives guided by their experts. Alternatively, utilize the guesthouse as a base for self-driven wildlife exploration. The guesthouse also organizes guided tours into the mountains and local communities, enhancing your stay.
If your aim is to witness the complete Big Five or indulge in a luxurious finale, consider staying in private reserves like Kwandwe. These independently managed sanctuaries encompass larger areas and boast robust populations of big cats—lions, leopards, and cheetahs—paired with upscale accommodations for an unforgettable safari experience.
Best time to visit for Self Drive in South Africa
This part is accessible throughout the year, with the peak season from January to March, characterized by optimal weather and minimal rainfall. For a visually enchanting experience, the prettiest time is spring (September), adorned with blooming flowers, though the weather is cooler and can be unsettled. October and November are ideal for whale watching and marine life encounters, while June to August, considered winter, offers fewer visitors and budget-friendly prices.
South Africa offers diverse tourist activities, from thrilling safaris in renowned national parks like Kruger to exploring vibrant cities such as Cape Town and Johannesburg. Discover the rich cultural heritage in Soweto, witness the breathtaking landscapes of the Garden Route, and indulge in wine tasting in the picturesque Winelands. For adventure, experience the adrenaline rush of bungee jumping at Bloukrans Bridge or embark on the iconic Table Mountain hike. Enjoy the golden beaches of Durban or encounter marine life along the scenic coastal areas. South Africa beckons with a blend of wildlife, culture, adventure, and natural beauty for every traveler.
You may also read:
- Best African Destinations
- South Africa Holidays 2024
- A step by step guide for planning African tour
- Best African Safaris
- Botswana Tours, what you can encounter.
- Kruger Safaris
- 5 Best Places Where to See Gorillas in Africa
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