Anybody who’s visited South Africa will tell you excitedly about its incredible diversity, both in terms of landscapes and cultures. Dry savannas, immense canyons, and cosmopolitan cities blend together, where eleven official languages are spoken by its warm, hospitable people. Take a trip to the “Rainbow Nation” and find out why South Africa touches the heart of anybody who visits.
Below are some of our sample South Africa vacation packages - although every trip with Tourlane is fully customizable, from end to end. Book flights, transfers, safaris, and accommodations, all in one place! Less
Customize your trip to South Africa on demand with advice from our Travel Experts for an unforgettable vacation! Safari, self-drive or family trip—discover our suggestions for stays in South Africa.
South Africa is nicknamed the “Rainbow Nation,” because of its immense cultural and ethnic diversity. South Africa has 11 official languages, which are present in South African literature and film. There is a contract in cultures between the country’s urban centers and its more rural communities.
Some African food is influenced by the different groups that have settled in the country, especially Asian settlers. A popular dish of this kind is bunny chow - a street food that originated from the Indian community in the city of Durban, and involves a hollowed out loaf of bread, stuffed with either chicken, pork, or vegetarian curry. Bobotie is another popular national dish, involving minced meat simmered with curry powder, and topped with egg and milk.
One of those most popular times to visit South Africa is during the cold northern hemisphere winter and warm southern hemisphere summer (December-March). If you choose this period, there are also great festivals you’ll want to integrate into your trip. For example, the carnival Kaapse Klopse takes place on January 2nd in Cape Town, where thousands of minstrels take to the streets garbed in bright colors, typically playing an array of musical instruments.
If you're a sports fan, consider timing your trip to South Africa to coincide with a live game. South Africans are crazy about sports - cricket, soccer, and rugby are the most popular. You’ll never forget the atmosphere and energy around the stadium during the game. The Cricket Test Series is particularly popular. There is also a decent amount of interest in American football in South Africa.
If you are interested in wine, then Stellenbosch and Franschhoek are must-sees during your South Africa tour. Only a short drive from Cape Town, these charming towns are at the center of South Africa’s world-famous wine region, known for its juicy Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinotage grapes. Whether you visit South Africa’s leading wine region on a day trip from Cape Town, or spend several days in the area, you’ll be entranced by the outstanding wineries here. Not only is the wine exceptional - the hospitality is too. Speak to your Tourlane Travel Expert for insider tips and recommendations about the very best wineries.
Beckoning animal enthusiasts from around the world, Kruger National Park is undoubtedly South Africa's most popular destination for exciting game drives. It is the oldest, largest and most established park in South Africa. Discover the enormous variety of wildlife here, including the legendary "Big Five"—elephant, rhino, buffalo, lion and leopard—spread throughout the parks 7,700 square miles. With a park this big to explore, you’ll want to spend at least three nights in one of the luxurious tent camps or exclusive lodges within the park.
If you want to see extraordinary geology alongside immense biodiversity, head to the Blyde River Canyon close to Kruger. This canyon is one of the largest canyons in the world and is an area of outstanding natural beauty. Covered in red sandstone rock as well as lush, subtropical foliage, the canyon is truly a unique natural wonder. Offering possibly the best view in Blyde River Canyon is the "Three Rondavels" viewpoint, overlooking the three huge, towering rock formations. We recommend going on a boat cruise, or if you’re feeling extravagant, take to the skies and marvel at the extraordinary from above during a hot air balloon ride.
If you’re looking to go hiking in the great outdoors during your South Africa tour, then head to Tsitsikamma National Park, located on the country’s south coast between Port Elizabeth and Cape Town. This area is famous for its beautiful, pristine forests brushing up against the Indian Ocean, and has a huge range of exciting hiking trails for you to enjoy. Its seaside cliffs are also a great place for shore-based whale-watching opportunities. Thrill seekers will be sure to notice that Tsitsikamma also offers the world’s highest bridge-based bungee jump as well as whitewater rafting opportunities. Less
South Africa is a year-round destination as climates vary across the country. If you want to observe nature in wildlife parks, winters are considered the best time to visit South Africa, as the dry weather forces animals to spend more of their time at various waterholes, helping to increase the number of animal sightings. Winters in South Africa occur between June and September and are usually dry, warm and sunny. Speak to your own Tourlane Travel Expert your travel tastes and preferences, and they will recommend a time of year that suits you.
South Africa is located in South Africa Standard Time (UTC+2).
This depends on what time of year you visit South Africa, and on your travel tastes and preferences. Speak to your own Tourlane Travel Expert for more information.
The official currency in South Africa is the South African Rand (ZAR).
South Africa has 11 official languages, including English.
Johannesburg Airport (JNB) has direct flights to the USA.