South Africa Travel: an Animal and Nature Lover’s Paradise

pattern formation wild animals south africa

It would be a unique experience to experience South Africa travel, having never been to Africa. Our airline does not fly to Africa, unfortunately. Therefore, we would have to ZED to get to South Africa on another airline. Even so, just because our airline does not fly to Africa does not mean it is not a worthwhile destination! ZED benefits make for abundant destination options. The only drawback is you probably will not get an upgrade, which would make for a long flight to South Africa.

Upon Arrival in South Africa, You Must Have;

Group Trip

Consider signing up for a group trip. By taking a group trip, you might lower your overall cost. It also saves the headache of activity planning and transportation. My husband and I get nervous driving somewhere new with different road rules. This option can remove any stresses associated with driving. There can also be safety in numbers! If we were to go to South Africa, this is probably the route we would take. You could also sign up for day tours to cater your trip more specifically to your preferences. We did a day tour on our trip to Costa Rica and had a blast!

6-Day Garden Route & Addo South African Adventure from Cape Town

5 Day Garden Route and Addo Safari – Best of South Africa Small Group Tour

8 Day Best of South Africa

12 day South African Adventure


If you prefer a more individualized experience than a group trip, it is doable to drive.

South Africa has the best road system on the continent. It is advisable to rent a car for your excursions, and is also a safer option than public transportation. 

Things to Know if Renting a Car:

  • Fuel stations are frequent in more populated areas but less in more rural areas. They have attendants, and it is customary to tip. 
  • Parking lots have car guards to deter break-ins, and it is also customary to tip them. 
  • Foreign licenses in English are valid for six months. 
  • Keep distance from other drivers, can be known to be reckless.
  • Pull into the shoulder (if clear of pedestrians) if someone is passing.
  • Drive slowly at night because of wildlife.
  • Prebook car rentals, rental companies run out of vehicles to loan. 
  • You need a credit card to get your rental car.
  • Camper-vans and 4WD vehicles can help you get more to remote destinations.
  • Drive on left 
  • Roundabouts: give way to traffic coming from the right.  
african penguins on a beach
Photo by Taryn Elliott on

South Africa Travel: Activities

adult cheetah
Photo by Piet Bakker on

UNESCO World Heritage Sites 


Other Information about South Africa Travel

  • 10111 is the emergency number
  • Avoid demonstrations
  • Travel insurance recommended 
  • Sometimes there are scheduled blackouts, where the power is off for up to six hours.
  • Water can be in short supply and can have use restrictions.
  • Hospitals in rural locations are below US standards, and medications are commonly counterfeit.
  • Many areas do not have potable water, drink bottled water to be safe (specify at restaurants)
  • Mosquito nets and spray recommended
  • English is the most commonly spoken language.
  • Currency: Rand (ZAR)
  • Climate Information

Cape Town Restaurants

photo of waterfalls during daytime
Photo by Taryn Elliott on

Food and Drinks

  • Biltong & droewors, preserved meat
  • Boerewors, sausage
  • Cape Malay curry
  • Amarula Don Pedro, cocktail
  • Bobotie
  • Melktert
  • Samoosa
  • Potjiekos, small pot food
  • Frikkadel, meatballs
  • Hoenderpastei, boer chicken pie
  • Bunny Chow, hollowed loaf with curry
  • Wine (Pinotage, Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Merlot, locally made Cape Blend, Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin blanc, Chardonnay, and South African white wine blend)
  • Rooibos tea
  • Boeber, a drink


Best, Cassie. “Top 10 Foods to Try in South Africa.” BBC Good Food, BBC Good Food, 6 July 2023,

“Cameroon International Travel Information.” Travel.State.Gov, US Department of State, 11 Sept. 2023,

Eveleigh, Mark. “How to Get around in South Africa.” Lonely Planet, Lonely Planet, 25 Aug. 2023,

Floyd-Douglass, Alex. “Here’s Where to Stay When You Visit Cape Town.” Time Out Cape Town, Time Out, 16 Aug. 2023,

Macdonald, Jessica. “Best Things to Do in South Africa.” TripSavvy, tripsavvy, 27 Aug. 2022,

Renée, Author JB &. “South African Food: 25 of the Tastiest Dishes.” Will Fly for Food, Will Fly For Food, 23 June 2023,

Simone. “Getting around South Africa: How to Get around in South Africa.” Rough Guides, Apa Digital AG, 27 Apr. 2021,

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