At times exhilarating, at times utterly serene, South Africa’s diverse regions offer world-leading safaris alongside world-class wines, bucolic Dutch towns with marvellous handicrafts, and vibrant cities, with elegant, energetic Cape Town an emblem of everything exciting and dynamic about this captivating country.

A vast and mesmerisingly beautiful medley of landscapes, South Africa sees the thrill of bushveld safaris and the adventure of hikes in the Cape Fold contrast with luxury rail journeys through spellbinding terrain, and the serene exploration of sleepy cliffside towns on the gloriously green Garden Route. Atop Cape Town’s iconic Table Mountain, spectacular views over Africa’s metropolitan jewel reveal a city burgeoning with attractions. Stoic Lion’s Head rock nods towards the elegant V&A Waterfront, which sizzles day and night with gourmet street food; cheerfully colourful houses beam from Bo-Kaap, while palm trees shade grand Georgian mansions; and beyond, Robben Island stands as a reminder of Nelson Mandela’s 18-year imprisonment, and all that’s changed in South Africa since then. Wrenching yourself away from romantic Cape panoramas, short and scenic drives deliver you to unpopulated golden beaches nestled beneath magnificent mountains, or to quaint Cape Dutch towns where the oldest vineyards outside of Europe produce South Africa’s food-friendly wines.

Striking inland, unearth South Africa’s wild heart. Savour voyages through the rugged Drakensberg Mountains, pitted with glassy lakes, or fire up the barbecue on the banks of the Limpopo river, grazing springbok and buffalo silhouetted against orange skies while drifting crocodiles add to the tranquility. Kruger, Sabi Sabi, and Madikwe provide fertile territory for unforgettable safaris amid the continent’s most bewitching landscapes, while private game reserves boast stately lodges, isolated and idyllic, offering game-viewing from the comfort of private plunge pools. Venture up the precipitous switchback roads of the Sani Pass for Zulu battlefields in KwaZulu-Natal, discover prehistoric human fossils at the Cradle of Humankind, or ancient San rock art hidden in caverns, before luxuriating on sub-tropical beaches with whales, dolphins and seals frolicking in the warmth of the Indian Ocean. With everything from sunrise ballooning to fish harpooning available as an itinerary add-on, tailor-make your South African adventure with us to ensure an unforgettable holiday in this rainbow nation of broad horizons and even wider smiles.

 


Special experiences

Enjoy private game drives in specially adapted vehicles and led by expert guides for big-five encounters in the Kruger National Park and Sabi Sands Reserve or track the famous black-maned lions, leopards and desert rhino in the Kalahari. Set your pulse racing by cage diving with Great White Sharks. If that’s a little too close for comfort, explore the Cape Coast from the air instead or watch whales from the terrace of your villa in Hermanus. For a unique wildlife experience, witness the spectacle of the Sardine Run. Gain an insight into the country’s past by taking a private yacht to Robben Island and listening as history comes alive through the life of one of Mandela’s cell-mates. Appreciate the spectacle of Table Mountain and its surrounds during a helicopter flight, landing on a secluded stretch of Camps Bay for a private lunch. Discover the flavours of South African cuisine with an authentic braai or during a private cookery class led by a celebrated chef. Visit private wine estates and undertake a personal wine tasting introduced by an expert sommelier or ride through the vineyards of Franshhoek on horseback or even by tram. Catch the desert in bloom at Namaqualand and cross your fingers as you dive for diamonds on the seabed of the western coast. Test your nerve trying a surf lesson in Jeffreys Bay with a world champion. Step back in time with a private charter on the luxurious Rovos Rail and watch the world glide by from the Observation Car, perfectly chilled glass of white wine in hand.


Kruger National Park game drive

Enjoy expert-led game drives in the world-renowned Kruger National Park

A guided tasting on Franschhoek's wine tram

Join a guided tasting on Franschhoek's famous wine tram

Rovos Rail, South Africa

Experience the elegance of rail travel aboard Rovos Rail's Pride of Africa

Where to stay in South Africa

Stay in magnificent chic retreats in Cape Town or immerse yourself in the heart of the action on the V&A Waterfront. Relax in handpicked boutique hotels in the wonderful Cape Winelands that are full of character, including Leeu Estates, or period-inspired properties such as Oude Werf in Stellenbosch. Elsewhere, experience life in an authentic homestead in Oudtshoorn and enjoy an overnight in a Cape-Cod style guesthouse in Hermanus. For a seriously special safari, luxuriate in spacious suites in a private retreat such as Dulini River Lodge or a stylish Big Five safari camp like Ecca Lodge in the malaria-free Kwandwe Private Game Reserve. We’ve got tips for luxury treehouse hideaways and lavish tented camps too. Ask us as well about staying onboard a luxury train styled with traditional Edwardian furnishings for a romantic night rolling across the country, soothed by the rattle of the rails.


When to go to South Africa

October to May is cooler but greener while the southern winter from May to September provides the best game viewing in both Kruger and the malaria-free Eastern Cape. June is perfect for whale watching while the incredible wildlife spectacle of the Sardine Run takes place off KwaZulu-Natal, also in the middle of June. March, meanwhile, is a good time to watch turtles hatching at iSimangaliso Wetland Park.


Suggested itineraries

Victoria Falls in Zambia/Zimbabwe

Highlights of Southern Africa

14 days from £5,785 pp incl. flights

See the highlights of Botswana, Zimbabwe and South Africa as you cruise under the world’s largest waterfall, enjoy two first-class safaris, and travel on an ultra luxury rail journey before ending in Cape Town

Camps Bay, Cape Town

Highlights of the Western Cape

11 days from £2,720 pp incl. flights

Encompassing the very best of the Western Cape, this tour takes in the cultural delights of Cape Town, the Winelands’ acclaimed estates and the natural beauty of Hermanus – South Africa’s whale-watching capital

Lion in Kgalagadi National Park, South Africa

Garden Route & Eastern Cape Safari

14 days from £3,730 pp incl. flights

Enjoy a luxury, all-inclusive and malaria-free safari with twice-daily game drives, a tasteful stay at a traditional wine estate and characterful accommodation in Cape Town and along the Garden Route

Winelands near Cape Town in South Africa

Cape, Winelands & Kruger Safari

12 days from £4,180 pp incl. flights

The perfect first-time visit to South Africa – explore vibrant Cape Town, wander amid world-class vineyards and spot the Big Five at Sabi Sand Game Reserve, home to the highest leopard population in the country

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