A trip to South Africa

Written on : 14 February 2018

The country of the rainbow nation

Land of 1,001 discoveries, South Africa surprises with its natural and cultural richness. The big cosmopolitan cities face a phenomenal biodiversity. And, in the heart of a particular historical heritage, fauna and flora have densely developed in wildlife and wildlife reserves creating an unusual African backdrop. In search of the Big 5, the elephant, the lion, the rhinoceros, the buffalo or the leopard, these five wildest animals most difficult to see, immerse yourself in the culture in this magical country.

Modern cities: Cape Town, Johannesburg and Durban

South Africa, besides its wild and varied landscapes, is also the den of contemporary world-famous cities.
Cape Town, with its golden beaches, street art and the afro chic decorations of guesthouses, seduces with its vibrant life and cultural appeal. At the foot of Table Mountain, it offers a wide range of sports and cultural activities. In particular, it contains the most visited tourist site in the region, the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront where you can find small shops, craft markets, museums and hotels. This multicultural city is also the essential destination to admire the Cape of Good Hope with its huge nature reserve.

Also vibrant, Johannesburg is an exciting metropolis and connected to the exciting nightlife. With its cultural and historical heritage, it offers many art galleries, interesting museums or typical African markets. This capital of the province of Gauteng is therefore an unavoidable stop.

As a meeting point between East and West in Africa, Durban offers an impressive cultural mix with a unique architecture that combines mosques and Victorian buildings. Its coastline is pleasant to enjoy a warm stream from Mozambique in the heart of KwaZulu-Natal province.

A surprising mosaic of African landscape

Between mountains, beaches of golden sand, canyons, forests and vineyards, South Africa is of a singular beauty with its contrasting regions.
With a mild Mediterranean climate, this paradise for wine lovers is full of large valleys covered with vineyards surrounded by majestic mountains. Among the most famous: Paarl, Darling or Stellenbosch, are world famous grape varieties. For a more picturesque discovery on the South Coast, the Garden Route is known as the most beautiful scenic drive in the country where you can admire the wild beaches lined with rivers and hills.

In the same atmosphere, Venda is a beautiful region of forests and waterfalls, called the land of "Dzata", meaning "the right place". These sacred and protected places are real African treasures. For more adventurous exploration, head to Blyde River Canyon, one of the most impressive landscapes in Mpumalanga province. This large canyon, with the Olifants River flowing at the foot of the dizzying mountains, is one of the largest in the world. From wild hills, round huts with thatched roofs along the Indian Ocean, this is the unlikely setting of the Wild Coast. Its pristine and wild beaches are small paradises for surfers. More tempted by a moment of relaxation and idleness? Head to the heavenly African beaches at Camps Bay lined with palm trees or Boulders Beach to see the famous penguins.

National parks abound

As it is worth remembering, South Africa has a wild fauna and flora out of the ordinary. These jewels of nature develop over the years in the many natural and wildlife parks of the region such as Kruger, in the North-East of the country. This large reserve covers more than 20,000km² and like Drakensberg with the caves of the Main Caves and Table Mountain, it is an ideal playground for long hikes and treks. Filled with trails and climbing routes, it is in this part of Cape that Fynbos flourishes, a typical African flora.
At the end of these lands, there is a unique place not to be missed. The Cape of Good Hope offers a splendid view of the world. You can admire baboons, antelopes, ostriches or penguins on the beach and whales on the horizon. To continue your discovery, the Addo Elephant National Park is the perfect place near Port Elizabeth to find a large population of elephants. In the South of the country, discover this amazing South African bush.

A land of culture and history

History lovers from all over the world, South Africa is a destination for you! With its cultural and religious events throughout the year, attend the commemorations of Freedom Day in spring or share the local culture at Coon Carnival each winter in Cape Town. This "rainbow" nation has, indeed, a rich African tribal cultural heritage. Colonial architecture combined with a deep history of different ethnicities offers an incredible journey in the heart of the eleven official languages ​​of this corner of the earth.
At the meeting of different people, the numerous museums like that of Apartheid or the art galleries of Johannesburg, retrace the lives of the civilisations of yesteryear. Walk in the footsteps of Nelson Mandela in his museum or on Robben Island, the UNESCO World Heritage penitentiary, to understand customs and traditions. It is also within one of the most important archaeological sites in Africa, Cradle of Humankind, that history awaits you!
Do not leave your palate for historical tours and taste the mix of flavours of African cuisine. Keys of Dutch, British, Malay or Indian cuisine, these are all the culinary delights of this gastronomy. In addition, when you go to Neighbourgoods market in Cape Town, you will discover regional products, crafts or unique dishes at Old Biscuit Mill.