Southern Africa is a vast region that holds some of the best destinations in Africa, these countries include the likes of South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Lesotho, Swaziland, Mozambique and Zambia, and that’s only naming a few. Travellers are more often than not awed by the diversity and beauty that Southern Africa holds. The contrast of a wild landscape and modern cities allows Southern Africa to serve up an exciting abundance of adventures and activities. Here are our top destination choices for when on holiday in Southern Africa:
The Mother City is in a constant state of movement and it’s rated as a holiday paradise. Surrounded by the Indian and Atlantic Oceans on either side, the city sits comfortably between a series of different mountains, which naturally includes the iconic Table Mountain. This modern city has a vibrancy that attracts all different cultures, tastes and preferences. It’s simply a city of authenticity from white sand beaches and famous Cape Winelands to African markets, Old Dutch colonial houses and one of the most diverse plant kingdoms on the planet.
We simply cannot have a best destinations list and not include the likes of one of the most famous game parks in the world. In the northeast region of South Africa, the Kruger National Park has some of the most spectacular game viewing. The wildlife in the Kruger Park roam free in the nearly five million acres. Getting up close and personal with the mighty beasts, which consist of the Big 5, is a humbling African experience.
The locals call Victoria Falls, Mosi-oa-Tunya, which translates to the smoke that thunders. An apt name for one of Mother Nature’s greatest creations. Victoria Falls are classified as one of the seven natural wonders of the world. When Vic Falls was discovered by David Livingstone he said, “Scenes so lovely must have been gazed upon by angels in their flight”. The Victoria Falls is also an adventure region. Everything from short safaris on elephant back and sundowners aboard a boat on the Zambezi River to bungee jumping in the gorge and helicopter trips for a bird’s eye view are offered.
The Okavango Delta is a special place. In northern Botswana it is an unspoiled oasis of wildlife and natural wonder. It is the world’s largest inland delta, formed by the Okavango River, which starts in Angola and flows into the Kalahari Desert, where it attracts wildlife from all over Africa. It’s often spoken of as “the river that never finds the sea”, the Okavango disappears into a 6000 square mile maze of channels and islands. While in the Okavango, a mokoro boat trip is a must. It’s a canoe that is operated by experienced guides that glide you through the delta to regions that cannot be reached by any other mode of transportation. Coming face to face with Elephant crossing waterways or herds of Buffalo quenching their thirst, is a norm here.
Mozambique has an interesting blend of African, Portuguese and Arab influences and is a contrast to the rest of Southern Africa. Lined with tropical beaches, pristine coral reefs and small, exclusive islands, it is a coastal slice of heaven. The Bazaruto Archipelago is one of Mozambique’s most beautiful tropical destinations. Five islands, Bazaruto, Benguerra, Magaruque, Santa Carolina and Bengue make up the Bazaruto Archipelago. It’s a haven for scuba and snorkel divers as well as the sun worshippers.
The Garden Route of South Africa lies on the southern coast just east of Cape Town and extends from Mossel Bay to the Storms River Mouth. This is the place you will reconnect with nature on a whole new level. There is the Tsitsikamma National Park, the Knysna and Wilderness Wetlands, sun kissed beaches, hiking trails and activities designed to inspire, like whale watching, sailing and golf.
Etosha National Park is located in Namibia, one of the most sparsely populated countries in the world. This reserve is the third largest game reserve in Africa and its draw card is the Etosha Pan, an 80 mile saltpan that is where an ancient lake used to be. This is where you will find Elephant, the rare Black Rhino, prides of lion, all trapsing for water. Where there is water there is life. It is a beguiling safari experience.