South Africa is an extremely diverse country that offers so many unique experiences for travelers. Whether you’re planning a family vacation or a solo backpacking trip, South Africa has a little bit of something for everyone to enjoy. You’ll find heart-racing adventures for the thrill seeking enthusiasts, beautiful hikes up it’s mountainous terrain, historical monuments that have shaped history, and so much more. Coming from a tumultuous past, this country has built itself up into one of the best travel destinations with thriving cities like Cape Town and Johannesburg along with many quaint towns and villages in between. Here are 15 of our favorite things to see and do in South Africa.
Located in the town of Sedgefield on Myoli Beach, the Afrovibe Adventure Lodge is a backpackers paradise. This hostel sits on 14 km of untouched beach, far away from any large cities, but is easily accessible by Baz Bus, a bus service in South Africa. You don’t need to venture far to have fun, this hostel offers plenty of activities like surfing, wakeboarding, kite surfing, paragliding and paddle boarding just to name a few. But, if you’d like to go off-site for some more exhilarating fun there is an on-site Adventure Center that will hook guests up with excursions like shark cage diving and bungee jumping. Guests can stay in four star rated rooms with private bathrooms and spacious balconies. If you are looking for some of the more refined comforts of home, stay at the nearby beach house which has free WiFi, a fireplace, kitchen, outdoor terrace, wooden deck with ocean views, a braai (barbecue) and indoor lounge areas. Need I say more? In the evening, wander downstairs to the Pilipili Beach Bar and restaurant to grab some grub. As the night continues, go outside grab a drink from the tiki bar and sit by the fire. Don’t forget to walk out onto the beach and view the most beautiful sunset you’ve ever seen!
Robben Island is one of the most monumental places in South Africa as it played a significant role in the country’s history. This island is now a historical hub as it was home to Nelson Mandela for 18 of his 27 years of imprisonment. Now a World Heritage Site, Robben Island was feared by many because of its haunted past. It has been a hospital, prison, mental institution, leper colony and even a military base. Located 9 km from the shore in Table Bay, Robben Island is a short ferry ride away from Cape Town’s waterfront. Ferries to the island depart daily on each hour from 9 am to 3 pm. Upon arrival, visitors will be given a tour of the island by former political prisoners who can provide personal accounts of their experience on Robben Island. The tours will include a visit to maximum security, Mandela’s former cell (which has been virtually untouched since he was imprisoned there), a trip to the lime quarry where Mandela and his fellow inmates participated in hard labor, the Leper’s Graveyard and the house where Robert Sobukwe was left in solitary confinement for nine years. This island’s treacherous past is sure to leave an imprint on all of its visitors and is a must-see for all of South Africa’s tourists.
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