10 Day Cape Town + Garden Route Combo - 10day Small Group & Solo of the Garden Route, Cape Town, Winelands, Whale Coast, Cape Point Complete Tour | Hotspots2c
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Cape Town + Garden Route Combo

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R15,700
R14,130

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Duration of tour
10 days

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Small Group

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Overview

10 unforgettable days, 1 easy click. Uncover the best of South Africa. Discover the must-sees in and around Cape Town, the Cape Winelands, Cape Point and the country’s famous Garden Route on an intimate, small-group tour with the flexibility to add optional activities to take your African adventure to the next level.

Planning the trip-of-a-lifetime can be super stressful. You can research for hours, but you never quite know what you're going to get on the other side. For absolute peace of mind, nothing beats the expertise and insider knowledge of locals who live it every single day. 

Cape Town injects a touch of Euro-chic to Africa and is a melting pot of art and history, street food and haute cuisine, imposing landscapes and pretty sandscapes, adrenaline adventure options and scenic hiking trails. We’ll help you get the most out of your time in the Mother City, tailoring activities to suit your taste and budget.

One day you’ll unearth the beauty of the Cape Winelands and their rich bounty of bold reds, delicate white wines and artisan produce and the next you’ll scout the southwestern tip of Africa along the jagged Cape Peninsula. And, of course, no visit to the Mother City is complete without a trip to the top of Table Mountain, one of the Seven Wonders of Nature.

In stark contrast to the bright city lights, the five-day, fully-guided Garden Route leg embraces all things wild and wonderful. Meander through many uniquely-different national parks with the chance to spot some of Africa’s Big Five - not to mention the Marine Five, Ugly Five and the Small Five if you’re lucky. Hold onto your hats as you safari through the densest population of wild elephants on the planet at Addo Elephant National Park and descend more than 100 metres below the surface through a primordial cave network laden with exquisite limestone formations.

Foodies will indulge in a drop or two on the longest wine route in the world; adventure seekers can bungy from the planet’s highest commercial bridge jump or zipline over waterfalls or surf top-rated, toe-curling waves at the famous Jeffreys Bay. There’s bird-watching for nature lovers, canoeing; time out at the picturesque and placid Knysna Lagoon and plenty of ‘me’ time to make your trip uniquely yours. 

On top of it all, an on-call concierge service is available to arrange extra activity bookings as you need them. This will come in handy on your unguided days in Cape Town to make sure your trip is as unique as you want it to be. It's as easy as hitting that book now button, South Africa is calling.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Why You’ll Love It

  • Paddle through the staggering scenery and abundant birdlife of Wilderness.

  • Experience a rush like no other when you jump from one of the world’s highest bridge bungy spots!

  • Soak in the views of Knysna and its surrounds from atop the sandstone heads.

  • Zipline through dramatic scenery and over waterfalls in the Tsitsikamma forest.

  • Walk through the luscious Tsitsikamma forest over suspension bridges with views of a secret beach.

  • Sandboard your way through the dunes of Jeffreys Bay.

  • Get beak to beak with the world’s biggest bird at an ostrich farm.

  • Hang ten on the world famous Supertubes in Jeffreys Bay.

  • Get close to nature as you learn more about indigenous plant species, insects, birds and wildlife on a Buffelsdrift 4x4 bush safari.

  • Head deep underground to the illuminated wonder world of the Cango Caves.

  • Follow orphaned African elephants at Buffelsdrift on their trek to the waterhole.

  • Roadtrip along Route 62's semi-desert country plains with quirky pitstops along the way.

  • Melt in your mouth spoonfuls of artisan ice cream paired with fine wine at Clos Malverne.

  • Savour iconic South African flavours with Marianne's red wine and biltong pairing.

  • Unwind with edgy wine in hand amid Babylonstoren's Cape Dutch farm-to-plate philosophy gardens.

  • Cruise to a colony of Cape Fur seals as these clumsy creatures laze about.

  • Explore the cultural haven of the bustling Hout Bay harbour. 

  • Prepare for unparalleled views as you drive along Chapman's Peak.

  • See wild Atlantic waves crash at the southwestern most point of Africa.

  • Take pics of the Muizenberg surfer's shores.

  • Come face to face with the mighty great white on an adrenaline-packed shark cage dive.

  • Waddle with adorable African penguins at Boulders Beach.

  • Chill out with some beach time or shopping in the surf town of Jefferys Bay.

  • Glide up the aerial cableway to see Cape Town from atop the iconic Table Mountain.

  • Soar on the thermal currents of Cape Town's mountains as you paraglide from Signal Hill.

  • Strap in for a bird's eye view with a heli flip over the Mother City.

  • Hop on and off at Cape Town's hotspots with a City Sightseeing bus pass.

  • Free fall from 9000ft above the heart of the Cape for a breathtaking skydiving thrill.

  • Learn about Mandela's past with an additional add-on tour of Robben Island.

  • Taste delicious ports in the Klein Karoo at Boplaas.

  • Experience an authentic African dining indulgence at Moyo.

  • Foodies eat your heart out in the culinary haven of Cape Town!

  • Drive the dusty roads of Addo in the tour vehicle, searching for elephants and other wildlife.

Itinerary

This combo tour package consists of more than one tour as well as unguided days in Cape Town. The itinerary can run in reverse or a different order and guides or transport will change during the trip.
Day 1
Cape Town
±400km

Start with a pick-up from Cape Town International Airport.

There’s nothing quite like that pre-vacation high. A combination of relief that you’ve escaped your every day and nervous excitement for the new things to come.

Today is really a free (unguided) day for you to acclimatise, to cast off any weariness from your journey and to get your bearings in South Africa’s Mother City. It’s a town known for its vibrant foodie culture, so bon vivants will be in their element along Long and Bree Streets in the CBD. And, in South Africa, no sundowner is complete without a colourful sunset. Camps Bay, an easy Uber ride from the centre of town, is one of the best spots to soak up the view, as is one of the many bars such as the elegant Leopard Bar at The Twelve Apostles Hotel.

Of course, if you’re keen to start adventuring straight away, a wide variety of activities can be pre-arranged. Imagine an optional heli-flip or paragliding outing over Cape Town; a scenic hike up Table Mountain or a hop-on-hop-off City Sightseeing bus adventure. There's so much to see and do, from horse riding to shark cage diving, so if you have any spontaneous requests, just ask.

Please note that your arrival time in Cape Town today will determine the activities that can be done. During the booking process you can inform us what you have in mind for the day (we will suggest activities too) to ensure that it is booked in advance. As this day is at your leisure, all transport except for the airport transfer service will be at your own expense.

Ways 2 Stay

Overnight accommodation included according to your selected stay package. Subject to availability.

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Day 2
Cape Peninsula > Cape Town
±100km

1 Day Cape Point + Penguins Tour

Start with a pick-up from your Cape Town accommodation.

Hout Bay, an unassuming fishing village on the northern side of Chapman’s Peak, is the first stop of the day and offers the chance to visit the seal colony of Duiker Island, just a short cruise from shore. For those without their sea legs, rather explore the local harbour market and snap Instagram-worthy pics of colourful fishing boats.

As you leave Hout Bay behind, you’ll take on a staggering 114 mind-blowingly beautiful bends – stretching over nine jaw-dropping kilometres. Chapman’s Peak road, or Chappies to the locals, is touted as one of the world’s most scenic drives – and with good reason. Rugged mountains face off with the Atlantic and the roadway, an incredible feat of engineering, cuts a swathe right through and provides unparalleled views of the Atlantic below.

Chappies sets the scene for the afternoon’s adventuring as you venture onwards to the Cape of Good Hope, the most southwesterly point of Africa. Here, water and wilderness literally collide and create a picturesque jagged shoreline adorned with greenish fringes of fynbos. This is a place to pay tribute to ancient seafarers of old like Bartolomeu Dias (who discovered the Cape of Good Hope back in 1488) and pioneers, like Vasco da Gama, who journeyed through these treacherous waters from Portugal to India.

Indigenous fauna lines narrow winding pathways en route to the Cape’s whitewashed lighthouse, with views well worth the climb. Local wildlife – ostriches, baboons, and various antelope species, including bontebok – keep the journey interesting and add plenty of postcard moments for the shutterbugs. On the hillside, an optional funicular eases the journey for those that want to reach the top of the lighthouse.

As the day lengthens, travel to Simon’s Town, perched on the shores of False Bay and the home of the South African Navy. Just a few minutes to the south lies Boulders Beach, a comely stretch of sand littered with granite. This hotspot is home to a large colony of African penguins who strut their stuff in their black and white feathered finery to the delight of the crowds that gather to watch. Boardwalks separate man from bird and provide the perfect vantage point to see these cute creatures.

The journey back to Cape Town sees you travel through the coastal towns of Fish Hoek and Kalk Bay with a stop at Muizenberg Beach. The Victorian-style bathing chalets on the sand – with their bright pops of colour – are sure to capture your attention as you cheer on the wave riders at Surfer's Corner. You'll reach Cape Town by late afternoon.

Ways 2 Stay

Overnight accommodation included according to your selected stay package. Subject to availability.

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Day 3
Stellenbosch Winelands > Cape Town
±100km

1 Day Taste The Winelands Tour

Start with a pick-up from your Cape Town accommodation.

Cape Town is blessed with good looks, natural charms and a quirky food and wine culture. No place more so than the Cape Winelands – a mere fifty kilometres from the Mother City – which boasts a high concentration of vintners and wine farms in its highly-fertile basin.

Today’s Cape Winelands tour, in and around Stellenbosch, gives you a taste of wine, artisan products and a rich history. South Africa can trace its wine roots back to the mid 1600s when the Dutch East India Company established a base in Cape Town. Grape vines were planted to help ward off scurvy for Dutch sailors passing along the Spice Route. The first fruit was harvested and crushed in 1659 but it was Simon van der Stel, the Governor of the time, that nurtured the burgeoning industry.

Van der Stel’s ideas took seed and today the Cape produces world-class drops, so seize the opportunity to stock up with a bottle or two for your stay.

Babylonstoren, cradled by the Simonsberg mountains, is your introduction to the winelands for the day. The property is rustic and a beautiful example of a garden-to-table wine farm with organic gardens. By sharp contrast, the glass walls of the tasting room are thoroughly modern and afford great views of the surrounding vines as you quaff some of their finest blends.

Just a short drive away lies Marianne Wine Estate, a farm that draws on a Gallic heritage in its wine-making. Here, French-style wines are showcased to best effect with locally-produced cured meats, called biltong, a much-loved staple in the South African diet and surprisingly tasty.

For an afternoon treat, Clos Malverne, set deep in Devon Valley, beckons. The farm’s chef creates mouth-watering artisan ice-creams – combining savoury, fruity, spicy and sweet elements – designed to complement and pair with the estate’s wines and sparking MCC (Methode Cap Classique).

On that sweet note, you'll follow the sun and turn back to Cape Town.

 
 
Ways 2 Stay

Overnight accommodation included according to your selected stay package. Subject to availability.

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Day 4
Cape Town
±50km

Today is a free day in Cape Town with many options to choose from; why not use your included hop-on hop-off bus day pass or your Table Mountain Cableway ticket.

Table Mountain tries her best to capture the lion’s share of attention in and around Africa’s Mother City – and does a pretty fine job of it too – but the beaches, winelands and cosmopolitan chicness all stand in firm competition.

A great way to visit the top attractions and make the most out of a short stay is to hop on Cape Town’s bright-red, open-topped buses. Let the driver’s do the hard work managing traffic and parking, whilst you just soak in the views.

Choose from one of the available routes to see the city and beyond. The blue line extends its journey from the V&A Waterfront to the towering greens of Kirstenbosch, while the purple line is a merry affair that follows Cape Town’s inner-city wine route to the nearby wine enclave of Constantia. The red line service passes through Camps Bay (time your trip to catch a sunset) and to Table Mountain.

If the weather plays along, this is the perfect way to take the chance to summit one of the Seven Natural Wonders aboard Table Mountain’s aerial cableway that runs non-stop (weather permitting) during the day to the famous flat top. There’s a small eatery and souvenir shop at the summit, plenty of trails and who knows, you just may be treated to an impromptu singing session as your cable car driver descends the mountain. End off your day as you please, tasting your way through the Cape Town Foodie scene. 

Ways 2 Stay

Overnight accommodation included according to your selected stay package. Subject to availability.

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Day 5
Wilderness > Sedgefield
±400km

5 Day Garden Route + Addo Tour

Start with a pick-up from your Cape Town accommodation.

Hold onto your hat! This southern coast of the Rainbow Nation combines dramatic scenery with artisan food, wildlife sightings, and adrenaline-fuelled activities, all united with a generous dose of South African hospitality. Meet the Garden Route – 300 or so kilometres of contrasts, contradictions and some of the most mind-blowingly beautiful scenery on the planet.

In this lush corner of the world, landscapes swap and change with great regularity so keep your camera at the ready as you wind your way through mountain passes and fertile cropping land towards the Indian Ocean.

After a morning drive with fascinating stops along the way, Wilderness National Park allows you to stretch your legs with a leisurely canoe paddle through a luscious green gorge. Native kingfishers, African fish eagles and brightly-coloured Knysna loeries tease bird-watchers with their calls and the fresh air provides the best pick-me-up after a day on the road.

Time suddenly seems to stop moving as the relaxed vibe of Sedgefield or Knysna settles over you. In keeping with the pace in these parts, it’d be an outrage not to sip sundowners at the waterfront and watch the sun sink below the watery horizon. 

Ways 2 Stay

Overnight accommodation included according to your selected stay package. Subject to availability.

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Day 6
Garden Route > Jeffreys Bay
±200km

The Garden Route can be as sedate or as adrenaline-charged as you choose and today offers up a mixed-bag of experiences.

Your day starts with a short coastal drive from Sedgefield to Knysna and some Vitamin Me time around the Knysna Lagoon. Towering sandstone cliffs flank the mouth of the Knysna estuary and lookout points offer exquisite views.

This gentle morning is followed by an afternoon of action for those who dare as you make your way to Bloukrans Bridge, the site of the world’s highest commercial bridge bungy. Crazy as it may be; it also happens to be one of the prettiest places to plunge 216 metres down on a bungy cord. There are market stalls and plenty of vantage points for those that choose to stay on terra firma. Or, for another adrenaline option, zip along an optional zipline over waterfalls in the magnificent Kruis River Gorge. The 40-minute, adrenaline-charged course sees you fly across three separate lines. Each ‘flight’ is connected by short scenic pathways through the lush forest, so be sure to take in the fresh air.

But it’s not all about the bungy, and those that get their kicks from nature can forgo the plunge and opt to continue on to explore the lush forests of the Tsitsikamma area.

The next stop, Tsitsikamma National Park, marries lush mountain forestry with dramatic ocean views. A short, albeit steep walk to the suspension bridge is worth it, if just for the views alone, and you’ll get a thrill as you test the bridge’s swing factor. Marine life can often be seen in the water and rock hyraxes regularly sun themselves on the rocky coastline.

As you head northeast, the white tips and large ocean swells herald your arrival into Jeffreys Bay, the pit stop for tonight. Affectionately nicknamed J’Bay by surfers and locals alike, this tiny coastal community is South Africa’s most famous surf town and one of the stops on the World Surf League circuit.

As sea breezes lull you, unwind from your busy day with a walk on one of the beaches, or let the town's restaurateurs spoil you with seafood.

 
 
Ways 2 Stay

Overnight accommodation included according to your selected stay package. Subject to availability.

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Day 7
Jeffreys Bay
±250km

Answering the call of the wild means an early morning start, but the chance to encounter Africa’s Big Five makes the dawn wake-up so worthwhile. Your guide will expertly lead you on a game drive in the tour van into Addo Elephant National Park - the third largest national park in South Africa.

Addo opened back in 1931 with only 11 elephants, but is now a sanctuary to more than 600 - the densest population of ‘ellies’ on the planet. These days, these giant tuskers share more than 164,000 hectares of malaria-free reserve with their fellow Big Five. Other iconic African animals - hyena, zebras, a variety of antelope species, jackals and warthogs - also roam free within the grounds, so be sure to have your camera at the ready.

As the safari draws to an end, the afternoon is yours to spend as you choose in Jeffreys Bay. In a town that attracts international surfers year after year, it is no surprise that many of the leisure activities revolve in and around the water.

Try your skills on one of the beginner breaks or learn to surf at one of the many surf schools in town. Sun-seekers can relax on the beach or with a paddleboard and those that prefer not to get wet can take a spin on a sandboard down sandy dunes.

The JB Surf Museum in the centre of town tracks the evolution of the surfboard and there are plenty of factory-outlet surf shops in town.

 
 
 
 
Ways 2 Stay

Overnight accommodation included according to your selected stay package. Subject to availability.

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Day 8
Oudtshoorn
±300km

The Garden Route by its very name evokes visions of lush, green sub-tropical landscapes, but today you’ll witness first-hand another of South Africa’s crazy contrasts as you head towards the semi-arid Klein Karoo region. Away from the coastline, temperatures climb and the vegetation thins, but the mountain passes, with their bright bursts of wildflowers and scrubby bush, are equally as spectacular.

Yup, you guessed it. You’re en route to Oudtshoorn, the self-proclaimed ostrich capital of the world. Ostriches thrive in the desert conditions and helped put this tiny town on the global map at the turn of the 20th Century when feathers were worth more than their weight in gold.

The feather trade might be done and dusted, but the town still makes a pretty penny from their birds. A visit to an ostrich farm allows a stylised glimpse into the world of ostrich farming and the chance to come beak-to-nose with the stars of the show.

This afternoon your tour reaches new depths. Hidden beneath the arid landscape lies a special place that the Khoisan people named Cango, the wet place. Some 100 metres underground, you’ll find incredible 20-million-year-old limestone formations that dominate a series of enormous underground caverns and are illuminated to show-off their extraordinary curves and shapes.

There are two ways to explore the caves. The Heritage Tour is a gentle wander with a guide (there are plenty of steps, so be warned) who fills you in on the history and ecology of the area and tests out the acoustics with a well-timed song. The second isn’t called the Adventure Tour for nothing, so be prepared to climb, wriggle and squirm your way through small openings and passageways. 

Subject to availability, return to the wild for an optional 4x4 game drive with a knowledgeable game ranger at Buffelsdrift Private Game Reserve for a possible sighting of resident wildlife.

After a wild day out, it’s pretty fitting to end the day with a taste of local delicacies. There are plenty of fantastic eateries in town for those that wish. And, as night falls, be sure to sit back and watch the stars in the clear night sky – it’s African big sky country after all.

 
 
 
 
 
Ways 2 Stay

Overnight accommodation included according to your selected stay package. Subject to availability.

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Day 9
Oudtshoorn > Cape Town
±400km

As dawn breaks in Oudtshoorn, South Africa’s sunniest town, join an optional stroll with rescued elephants along the dam wall at the Buffelsdrift Private Game Reserve. Gentle giants, Jabari, Malaika and Bulelo made this their home after their parents were poached in the north of South Africa. This experience will have you following in their massive footsteps, making memories you'll never forget. 

After your morning adventure, it’s time to head back to Cape Town along the famous Route 62, modelled after America’s Route 66, but with a distinctly local flavour. Route 62 is more than just burgers and beers, farm stalls or small country towns, the highway is also the longest wine route in the Western Cape. Oenophiles will be in their element with a wine pit stop to sample Port-style wines en route to Cape Town. 

Ways 2 Stay

Overnight accommodation included according to your selected stay package. Subject to availability.

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Day 10
Cape Town
±50km

You can never have too much of a good thing, so today you'll get to spend more fuss-free time back in the Mother City. Try to book later night flights out of Cape Town or extend your stay to make the absolute most of this last free (unguided) day.

Victoria and Albert Waterfront is a hotspot for last minute souvenir shopping and the launch spot for a trip to Robben Island (subject to weather and availability). Artisinal delis on Long and Bree Street; local produce in the Old Biscuit Mill in nearby Woodstock; a day-trip to Franschhoek for gourmet a feast; or an authentic African experience at Moyo restaurant in Kirstenbosch – all add to the foodie flavours of the Cape.

Pop out for some additional wine-tasting at nearby Constantia and organise a case to be shipped home ahead of you. Pick up last minute gifts in Green Market Square or stroll along the Sea Point Promenade. Those that dare can also squeeze in one last magnificent view with an optional skydive or head out to Gansbaai for a full day outing to cage dive with great whites.

And, when the shopping’s done and your bags are packed, the included airport transport service will deliver you safely to your onward travel plans.

As this day is at your leisure, all transport except for the airport transport service will be at your own expense.

End with a transfer to the Cape Town International Airport.

 

Included

Small Group

Maximum 13 guests per vehicle or guide. 

Local Guide

Led by a local English-speaking professional tour guide on the following small group tours in this combo package:

  • 5 day Garden Route + Addo tour
  • 1 day Cape Point + Penguins tour
  • 1 day Taste The Winelands tour
Transport

Transfers to included tour highlights. 

Pick-up + Drop-off

There is no central meeting point for this tour. A transfer service will collect you from Cape Town International Airport or your Cape Town accommodation.

Accommodation

9 nights accommodation according to your Ways 2 Stay package.

Breakfast

9 x Breakfasts included

COMBO tour

This combo tour package consists of more than one tour. The itinerary can run in reverse or a different order and guides or transport will change during the trip.

Included Activities
  • Explore the Cape by City Sightseeing Bus
  • Table Mountain Cable Car Ride
  • Browse Hout Bay Harbour
  • Curve Along Chapman's Peak Drive
  • Cape of Good Hope Explore
  • Coastal Joyride Along Muizenberg
  • Ostrich Farm Visit
  • Cango Caves Heritage or Adventure Visit
  • Wilderness Canoeing
  • Knysna Heads Walk
  • Tsitsikamma National Park Explore
  • Addo Game Drive in Tour Vehicle
  • Chill Out at J'Bay
  • Babylonstoren Gardens Wine Tasting
  • Marianne Wine & Biltong Pairing
  • Clos Malverne Wine & Ice Cream Pairing

Excluded

Optionals

Optional activities can be paid and booked during your journey.

  • Cape Town Heli-flip
  • Table Mountain Cable Car Ride* 
  • Signal Hill Paragliding or Skydiving
  • Duiker Island Cruise
  • Boulders Beach Reserve Entry
  • Bungy + Zipline at Bloukrans Bridge (or) Tsitsikamma Waterfall Zipline
  • Buffelsdrift 4x4 Safari
  • Buffelsdrift Elephant Bush Walk
  • Surfboard & Wetsuit Hire
  • Sandboarding

*Table Mountain Cableway will be closed to perform maintenance for two weeks in Jul/Aug. Cable car tickets will not be bookable then but the hiking trails remain open.   

Flights

Local and international flights are excluded.

Travel Insurance

You are responsible for your own personal travel insurance. 

Lunch, Dinner + Drinks

You can purchase meals + drinks on tour.

Cape and Garden Route Complete Reviews

FAQ

Need more information?
Contact me if you have any questions.
Demi-Lee Hill
Reservations & Marketing

I am absolutely in love with exploring our crazy beautiful Cape Town and sharing it, and the rest of our magnificent country, with others. Coming from a marketing background, I really enjoy getting to inspire others to travel, through online marketing platforms. Of course, in order to do this, I have to practice what I preach and I waste no time in visiting the many local markets and wine farms our area has to offer!

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Terms & Conditions

Click terms for more details.

Payment Policy: 100% deposit to confirm

Full amount required to reserve or confirm a booking.

Cancellation / Refund Policy: Free cancellation - 7 day full refund
  • If you cancel 7 days or more before the scheduled departure, there is no cancellation fee.
  • If you cancel between 3 and 6 days before the scheduled departure, there is a 50% cancellation fee.
  • If you cancel within 2 days of the scheduled departure, there is a 100% cancellation fee.
Child Policy: No children under 12

Children under 12 years are not allowed. Children between 12 and 18 years must to be accompanied by an adult.

Standard terms apply

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Know Before You Go

 what to expect

 

South Africa

  

11 official Languages Spoken

Afrikaans – English – isiNdebele – Sepedi.– Sesotho – Siswati – Xitsonga – Setswana – Tshivenda – isiXhosa

How to say hello?

Molo – Xhosa

Sawubona - Zulu

Hallo - Afrikaans

Dumela - SeSotho

 

Electricity – Volt & plug

The South African electricity supply is 220/230 volts AC 50 HZ. Most plugs are 15 amp 3-prong or 5 amp 2-prong, with round pins.

Measurements 

Metric System

 

WiFi/Internet Access on tour 

WiFi can be found at most accommodations, restaurants and airports, however, the download speed is often slow and many connections limit your data usage. In short, you’ll be able to stay connected with home, but don't expect to watch HD movies in your spare time.

 

When to go

South Africa is blessed with a mostly mild climate, but different areas will yield different temperatures throughout the year. Summer in South Africa is usually peak season, lasting between November – February, however Easter time (March) is often still considered peak season too. Temperatures range from 25ºC in coastal areas to high 30ºs in inland areas. Cape Town has ideal weather during this time and Durban sports warm beaches and humid air, Johannesburg experiences hot clear days and often an afternoon thunderstorm.

Shoulder season is April and May, as well as September and October. Surprisingly, the weather in Durban is often at its best during this time, and other areas simmer down from their scorching highs. Prices are lower and crowds are smaller. September and October see eruptions of flowers and blooms all around the country.

Winter is beautiful in most parts of the country. Cape Town experiences winter rain and is often a little cold and miserable, but still crisp and beautiful. Because of the warm Indian Ocean, Durban has spectacular weather in winter, often hovering around 20-25ºC with clear blue skies. Inland areas get quite chilly and the odd snowfall is not uncommon (it only lasts for a day though!). Prices are at an all time low and it is an ideal time for game viewing, as the animals are more active in the cooler weather. 

Best time to go

Jun-Jul = Safari 

Jan-Feb = Beach 

 

Public Holidays

With the possible exception of Christmas Day and New Year's Day, most tourist services and attractions are open on South African public holidays. In addition most city shopping centres, restaurants and entertainment venues remain open.

1 Jan   New Year's Day
21 Mar   Human Rights Day
30 Mar   Good Friday
2 Apr   Family Day
27 Apr   Freedom Day
1 May   Workers' Day
16 Jun   Youth Day
9 Aug   National Women's Day
24 Sep   Heritage Day
16 Dec   Day of Reconciliation
17 Dec   Day of Reconciliation Holiday
25 Dec   Christmas Day
26 Dec   Day of Goodwill

 

Visa & Travel docs

Travellers from most Commonwealth countries (excluding New Zealand), most Western European nations, Japan and the USA receive a free, 90-day visitor's permit on arrival. These travellers do not need a visa to enter South Africa. A valid passport is essential with at least two empty pages. You generally will need to show return or onward travel arrangements. Children aged under 18 must show an unabridged birth certificate (showing both parents details).

Some countries do, however, need a visa. Visas are not issued upon entry, they must be attained beforehand. It is advised that you clarify this before you leave, the Department of Home Affairs office has a comprehensive list of countries that do not require visas. http://www.dha.gov.za/index.php/immigration-services/exempt-countries

 

What to pack

We're generally laid back in South Africa, so no need to haul out your best silks and diamonds when you head to our shores. Here's some clothing advice when in South Africa:

  • For the summers, bring clothes that are cool and comfortable, along with an umbrella or rain jacket, as this is when most of the country gets rain. A light jacket or wrap is a good precaution. Don't forget a swimming costume.
  • The winters are generally mild, comparing favourably with European summers. But we do get some days when temperatures plummet, especially in high-lying areas such as the Drakensberg (some nights go below 0ºC), so be prepared with jerseys and jackets. If you are going to the Cape, rain gear will be needed in this season (your average here will be between 10-20ºC).
  • Always bring a hat - the sun can be strong even in the winter months. Make sunglasses, a hat and sunblock a firm part of your skin care kit.
  • Walking shoes are a good idea all year-round, with warm socks in the winter.
  • For game viewing, a couple of neutral-toned items will be useful, but there's no need to go overboard and kit yourself out like David Livingstone, out to explore Africa for the first time.
  • For the evening, if you are dining at an upmarket restaurant or seeing a show, go the smart-casual route. If you are simply going out to get a bite to eat, a general “no shirt, no shoes - no service” rule applies, so as long as you are fully clad, your attire should not be an issue.
  • When travelling with Hotspots2c we encourage reasonably sized bags for multi-day tours and we are able to accommodate bags that are on average under 20kgs. For one and two day tours, a light backpack is encouraged. 

  

Health & Safety

There are no compulsory vaccinations required to enter South Africa with exception of a yellow fever vaccination if you have been in a yellow fever area within the last 12 months.

The only major health risk you might face in South Africa is malaria, which is confined to small areas in the north-eastern parts of the country. Small pockets of the northern parts of the Kruger National Park fall under this area but the risk here is considered extremely low and it is not always necessary to take anti-malaria tablets. Remember as a precautionary measure to check with your accommodation what is recommended.

South Africa may have high crime statistics, but if you conduct yourself wisely, most tourists enjoy the country without any incident at all. Ensure that you lock away your passports and travel documents in a safe, which is usually provided by your accommodation. Don't flash around valuables and keep an eye on your belongings at all time. Majority of South Africa’s crime is opportunistic petty crime, so if you are vigilant about your belongings you should not have any problem.

 

Getting Around 

South Africa has 3 world-class airports that receive international flights every day; Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town. Most international airlines will have flights into one or all of these airports daily.

There are numerous budget carriers that offer domestic flights between the major cities for very reasonable rates; this is the fastest and safest way to span large distances, especially between Johannesburg and Cape Town, which is a 2-hour flight.

From the airports there are numerous shuttles and taxis that you can pick up upon arrival, there are also many different car hire options at each airport and in all major cities. Uber is another reliable and affordable option.

 

Money 

Our currency in South Africa is the South African Rand. You can easily convert your currency to rand at a bank or Forex Bureau, the airports and larger towns often have many different Forex options. You can also withdraw from an ATM, banks are available throughout South Africa. Be sure to check what international bank charges you will incur for withdrawals before you arrive. Major credit cards are usually accepted in hotels or restaurants, however, there may be a surcharge. It is advisable to have small amounts of cash for curios and tipping. 

Tipping

  • Restaurants and Bars - Tipping in restaurants is the norm and is customarily kept at 10% of the total shown on the bill. Many restaurants will add a 10% service charge to a bill if the number of guests exceeds six or ten.
  • Petrol Stations and Car Parking - Petrol station attendants may be tipped a few Rands if they wash the windscreen, and offer to check oil and water and the tyres. Car-guards or parking-attendants are usually given R2 - R5. Car parks and areas around many popular tourist spots are populated by locals in day-glo yellow vests who offer to direct you to a space or to "look after your car for you." They are not threatening and you do not have to pay them, but giving them a few Rands may stop them from turning to petty crime. Cape Town has recently instituted a more formal parking attendant system in the downtown area, where uniformed attendants with handheld machines take payment for parking.
  • Tour Guides and Drivers – Tipping on tour is neither expected nor compulsory, However, should you wish to tip, the recommended tip is usually R10 per person on a day tour and R15 per person per day on multi-day tours. For private tours, R50 per person per half-day tour and R80 per person per day for a full-day tour is the norm.
  • Hotels - At hotels you may choose to leave money for housekeeping, this is often between R10-R50 per person per day but is in no way compulsory. It can also be done at the end of your stay
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