Off the beaten track

South Africa’s hidden treasures

  1. 1st Dec 2019

When we visit a country on vacation, we usually stick to the better-known destinations.

In South Africa, most people have heard of the Kruger Park, Cape Town and Garden Route and have either included or want to include them in their travels.

If you are wanting something off the beaten track, here are some of my personal favourites:

Cape West Coast

The Cape West Coast has a cooler climate as it is on the colder Atlantic Ocean. It isn’t a place you would usually go to sunbathe and swim, but the beauty of this coastline lends itself to long walks and is a photographer’s dream.

The Langeberg Lagoon is an hour’s drive from Cape Town. Here you will find the breeding grounds of many sea-birds.

If you plan your vacation to this area around August/September, you will have a very good chance of seeing the beautiful spring spectacle of the Namaqualand daisies in full bloom. This can be seen in the West Coast National Park. I visited last year and it is truly one of the most beautiful displays of nature!

Further up the West Coast is the little fishing village of Paternoster. Long walks on sandy beaches that stretch for miles are highly recommended. It is also home to Wolfgat – voted the World’s Best Restaurant in 2019.

My husband swears that the fish & chips at De Palm in St Helena Bay is the best he has ever tasted! (He should know being a Scotsman raised on fish & chips with mushy peas).

Another one of a kind dining experience is Muisbosskerm – an open-air restaurant in Lambert’s Bay! We loved it, but phone ahead to make sure it is open!

Cape Southern Coast

Nestled about halfway between Cape Town and the Garden Route is the stunning De Hoop Nature Reserve, which offers a full outdoor experience with the sea, sand dunes, fynbos and mountains.
Fynbos is a unique heathland vegetation only found along the Western and Eastern Cape coast. Out national flower, the King Protea is also found in the fynbos regions.
De Hoop is worthy of a 2-3 night stay to soak up this beautiful and unique landscape.

Drakensberg Amphitheatre & Sani Pass

This magnificent mountain range that looks like a dragon’s back forms the border between South Africa and Lesotho. Best accessed from Durban, a 2-3 night stay here will give you an opportunity to take a hike in the splendour and also do a day tour up Sani Pass which is the highest point in South Africa.

Most of these options are best accessed on a self-drive itinerary which I am happy to personalize for you.

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