Nature & Wildlife
Five incredible experiences in South Africa.
South Africa is blessed with amazingly abundant and diverse natural resources. From mountains to waterfalls, game reserves to beaches, lions to penguins, the country’s topography, flora and fauna offer something for everyone. Whether you are interested in hiking a mountain trail, watching rare birds, photographing big game or swimming in a secluded waterfall, South Africa’s natural wonders offer countless opportunities for unforgettable experiences.
▲ Stay in a tented camp at the legendary
Kruger National Park
As South Africa’s most famous wildlife reserve, Kruger National Park draws tourists from around the world for its excellent wildlife tours, abundant natural beauty and variety of accommodations. The massive park, spanning 2 million hectares, offers visitors a wide range of experiences, from self-drive day safaris to five-star lodges. For those seeking an intimate experience with nature, however, staying in a tented camp presents an experience unlike any other. The various tented camps in Kruger Park provide the thrill of camping in the outdoors but with the amenities of a luxury hotel. With early morning, afternoon and evening game drives, gourmet meals served al fresco, and informative on-hand guides to educate and enlighten, a stay in Kruger Park is one of the best ways to experience South Africa’s amazing wildlife.
▲ Get off the grid at The Herb Cottage
Located in the picturesque Magoebaskloof valley, The Herb Cottage is located on a working avocado and herb farm. This secluded and cozy two-bedroom home comes with a fully equipped kitchen, a fireplace, gorgeous mountain views and an outdoor plunge pool. A perfect place to disconnect from modern life, The Herb Cottage provides an excellent location for those who enjoy nature walks, biking or simply time off the grid. theherbcottage.co.za
▲ See underground wonders on the
Cango Caves Adventure Tour
South Africa’s natural wonders are not limited to those that can be found above ground. The Cango Caves are located nearly 100 meters beneath the ground near the foothills of the Swartberg mountain range in the Western Cape Province. Comprising over four kilometers of numerous underground tunnels and chambers, these ancient caverns hold an endless number of breathtaking and mysterious sights. With various tours available, including family-friendly options and an “Adventure Tour” for those seeking a more challenging expedition, a visit to the Cango Caves is an unforgettable addition to any South African holiday itinerary.
▲ Hike the challenging Amatola Trail
For serious hiking enthusiasts, there is no better challenge in South Africa than the Amatola Hiking Trail, located in the Eastern Cape Province. This 105-kilometer trail, which is meant to be completed in six days and five nights, winds its way through a wide variety of scenery, including thick forests of yellowwood trees, mountain ranges and multiple waterfalls. This strenuous trail is not for the faint of heart, but those who are up to the challenge will be rewarded with unforgettable scenery and abundant opportunities for bird and animal sightings. amatolatrails.co.za
▲ Discover the wonders of the Cape Recife Nature Reserve
The Cape Recife Nature Reserve is an environmental conservancy spanning 366 hectares adjacent to ocean near Port Elizabeth in Nelson Mandela Bay. Considered one of the best bird-watching locations in the country, this is is one of the few places on the continent where penguins can be observed. In addition to the amazing bird life, the unspoiled beaches, sand dunes and a historic lighthouse make Cape Recife a uniquely peaceful and memorable destination.
Did you know?
- South Africa is one of the most biodiverse countries in the world, and has been designated as one of the world’s 18 “megadiverse destinations.”
- In 2016, George Airport, in South Africa's Western Cape, became the first airport in Africa (and only the second in the world) to become fully solar-powered.
- South Africa’s paper recycling rate, at over 68 percent, is well above the global average and continues to grow each year.
- Dozens of destinations in the country are members of Fair Trade Tourism, an organization that promotes sustainability and community empowerment through tourism (visit fairtrade.travel for more information).
- South Africa has a wildlife population of over 24 million animals, including several species that have been brought back from near-extinction.