There aren’t many places in the world as beautiful as South Africa. It’s a nation we associate with diversity and culture. From Table Mountain’s peaks and game reserves, to the many vineyards prospering in the warm, humid climate.
From national/safari parks that are bigger than some countries and world-famous mountain ranges, here are the best places to visit in South Africa, picked by Sell My Car Quick.
The Garden Route
Stretching languorously from the East to West Cape provinces is the Garden Route. Before you ask, the scenery is as pretty as the name sounds. Take a road trip down the 200 km coastline and watch South Africa’s beaches, forests, lakes, and meadows pass by like a dream.
On the Garden Route coastline, you can also spot whales, dolphins, sharks and even penguins on a lucky day! Stop off for a swim at Nature’s Valley Beach to cool down and grab dinner in view of the sand-stone cliffs of Knysna, one of the best towns to visit in South Africa.
Kruger National Park
There are over 20 national parks and reserves across South Africa, but Kruger is usually the first you’ll hear about. It’s the largest by far, stretching over 19,000 sq kilometers, from sunlit savannah to lush grazing land for the zebras! Game drives to see the Big Five are popular all year round for tourists and locals alike (i.e lions, elephants, African buffalo, rhinos and leopards).
The jewel in Cape Town’s landscape and the most photographed landmark across the country. Take the cable car to the top and take in Table Mountain’s bounty of lakes and streams, wild flowers and dramatic cliffside views over Western Cape’s skyline.
The Table Mountain Aerial Cableway was built all the way back in 1929 and reaches more than 1,000 meters! If you get spooked by heights, take solace in the fact that literally millions of people have explored the mountains this way. Love hiking? You can reach the top of the mountain after a 1.5 hour walk.
On the Eastern tip of Garden Route lies Storms River, where the humongous waves crash like clockwork. There’s a suspension bridge you can check out and see the river from a height, as well as Tsitsikamma National Park, Africa’s first national marine park.
Storms River runs through Tsitsikamma, meaning the ‘place of much water’ in Khosian, one of twelve official languages across SA. From boat-rides to scuba and hiking trails, there are loads of things to do by the river mouth that’ll suit the more adventurous types.
Golden Gate Highlands National Park
Situated on the tip of the Lesotho border, Golden Gate Highlands National Park is a bit of a mouthful to say… But it’s one of the best places to visit in South Africa for nature lovers! You can watch zebra and wildebeest graze on the park’s foothills, while the kaleidoscope of wild flowers will keep your Instagram feed nicely topped up.
Blyde River Canyon
If you didn’t get time to visit the Grand Canyon on your travel bucket list, Blyde River Canyon is almost as epic – it’s thought to be the third largest canyon in the world. Outdoor activities are plentiful in this area, with opportunities for horse riding, fishing, hikes, and even helicopter or hot air balloon rides! The view from 750 metres is unmissable, trust.
The site where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for many years, Robben Island is a place of historical significance for South Africans and the world. In the 17th and 20th century, this beautiful island was a military base, a hospital for disadvantaged groups and a prison. After the end of apartheid, it’s developed into a haven for locals and tourists alike, though the sombre history of the island remains.
A guided tour is probably the best way to experience Robben Island’s wealth of rare plants and fauna, as well as learning more about Nelson Mandela’s secret activism while he was imprisoned. Don’t forget to look out for penguins colonies on the beach!
Have you seen all these destinations? If not, which is next on your holiday bucket list?
If you're roadtripping around South Africa this season and you know your car might get crammed-up - sell it to us and purchase a new car for your trip, it's also a nice gift to give yourself.