• Bitten by the whale watching bug Bitten by the whale watching bug We don’t realise how lucky we are in South Africa, and in particular the Western Cape, to have the mightiest of the marine mammals visit our coastline between every year ...
  • The Whale Trail The Whale Trail The Whale Trail is not a new trail, having been around since about 2002, but it has become extremely popular. It is truly a unique experience, perhaps comparable with ...
  • 10 Pamper-Perfect Spas in South Africa 10 Pamper-Perfect Spas in South Africa Combine your trip to South Africa with a relaxing, revitalising visit to a health spa and experience Africa at it's finest. Our favourite 10 Pamper-Perfect Spas in South Africa are ...
  • Locals share their favourite getaways Locals share their favourite getaways We ask 30 local South Africans to share their favourite holiday destinations and getaways with us. From the more popular destinations like Knysna and the Kruger Park to ...
  • The Oude Skip hike The Oude Skip hike The Oude Skip walk shares portions of its hike with the larger Karbonkelberg Traverse, which is roughly seven hours of hard walk from Hout Bay harbour to Llandudno ...
  • 10 Amazing Game Lodges 10 Amazing Game Lodges South Africa is world renowned for her game reserves and wildlife. The lodges which allow us to experience these in luxury are no less awe inspiring. Our favourites are ...
  • 101 Things to Do with Kids in Cape Town 101 Things to Do with Kids in Cape Town As much as your kids will tell you they can’t wait for the school holidays, the words "I’m bored" inevitably cross their lips. Our "101 things to do with kids in Cape Town" will ...
  • "World's most beautiful Cities" "World's most beautiful Cities" Open space makes Cape Town special. Renowned English sea navigator Sir Francis Drake once referred to Cape Town as the fairest cape in the world. The city houses the ...

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Activities and Things To Do

This category includes posts about activities and Things to Do ranging from extreme adventure (skydiving, shark-cage diving and other activities that will thrill excite adrenaline junkies), to more sedate past times such as shopping and eating out. Visit SA-Venues.com for thousands of Things to See and Do in South Africa or see accommodation in South Africa to find a place to stay for your African Adventure!

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

The Marvellous Makaranga Botanical Gardens

I had wanted to go to Makaranga ever since I first saw photos of it on a friend’s FaceBook page and although we made a first attempt earlier this month we didn’t quite make it so were determined to get there this time around. Located in the KwaZulu Natal suburb of Kloof, the main attraction at the 30 acre property (named Makaranga after the wild poplar trees and a Zimbabwean tribe of the same name) are the simply stunning gardens. Continued

Thursday, 21 August 2014

Top 5 Steam Train Rides in South Africa

Rail adventure, in the good old-fashioned sense of the word, might be a thing of the past but you have only to contact one of the 5 following groups of steam railway fanatics to enjoy a ride. Chug along behind a class 15F steam locomotive that, back in the day, transported the likes of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth when they visited the country in 1947.

It is thanks to a handful of groups across the country that steam train rides are available at all today. Continued

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Where to get drunk in the Overberg – plan your ‘winecation’

When someone mentions ‘wine route’ in Cape Town, one usually thinks of Stellenbosch or Franschhoek, not the Cape Overberg, yet this region is every bit as likely to get you drunk. With 250km of winescapes to explore, the serious wino can’t possibly consider themselves such without experiencing the tipple in this region… Continued

Monday, 18 August 2014

5 forms of unusual transport in South Africa

South Africans clearly do not lack in the inventiveness department. We’re forever coming up with alternative ways of doing things.

Transport is no different. The heaviness of traffic, the influx of visitors demanding unique experiences, and the need to get from A to B have all contributed to these forms of unusual transport in South Africa…
Continued

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

22 Things we LOVE about Cape Town

Cape Town over the last 15 years has completely re-designed itself. The city has gone from a sleepy hollow tagged onto the bottom of Johannesburg, to become one of the most photographed, talked about, and visited cities in the world.

Even Fodors has been heard to mutter that if there is only one place in South Africa you visit, make it Cape Town.

Those who live here are more than a little patriotic about their city. Here are the things we LOVE about Cape TownContinued

Friday, 8 August 2014

A visitor’s guide to using minibus taxis in Cape Town and Johannesburg

The minibus taxi is as commonplace in South Africa as the tuk-tuk is in Thailand (although tuk-tuks are now also found on the streets of Jozi, but that’s another story) . They’re everywhere.

Last count, which was quite some time ago, saw over 50 000 of them in Johannesburg alone…

Accommodating roughly 10 people at a time, the average minibus is in dire need of mechanical assistance, and driving standards seldom adhere to the rules of the road – frustrating for everyday commuters (read: those with cars) who regard taxis as a scourge.

Many routes are highly unsafe, and as a visitor to the country you would do well to ask for local advice before using them. That said, a visit to South Africa is incomplete unless you’ve hitched a ride in one. Continued

Monday, 28 July 2014

The 10 best eateries in Durban

Durban as a ‘foodie destination’ is a recent concept. The Roma revolving restaurant was about as good as it got. Recently areas like Greyville, Berea and Glenwood have mushroomed into trendy alternatives to the always buzzing Florida Road, and places to nosh have restored the city’s lunch and dinner scene.

Here are 10 of the best eateries in Durban, for a variety of reasons… Continued

Friday, 25 July 2014

Grootvadersbosch – 15 reasons to visit this last patch of indigenous forest

Right at the end of a dirt road that begins somewhere after the little village of Suurbraak is the largest remaining indigenous forest in the Langeberg.

The forest is almost engulfed by the ravine into which it descends, barely visible from the top of the mountain fynbos-clad hillsides of the Grootvadersbosch reserve. This isolated pocket of Afromontane forest, in a pleat of the Cape fold mountains, is known by few yet there are a myriad reasons to visit … Continued

Thursday, 17 July 2014

The 8 best drinking holes in Cape Town

Cape Town is lively, sophisticated and one of the world’s 10 most loved cities at any time of the year. But in winter, when driving rain or cold can keep people from spilling out onto the pavements, finding the city’s favourite drinking holes is not as easy as cruising the streets to follow the crowd; the crowd is usually safely sequestered indoors.

We thought we’d be helpful and highlight our top trendy drinking holes in Cape Town, in the centre of the city… Continued

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Living in Cape Town – The 15 best days

Just about any time spent living in Cape Town is better than living anywhere else (yes, I am unashamedly biased). Even so, there are some days that are even better than others. Guess that’s why we love living here so much… Continued

Thursday, 10 July 2014

Where to drink in Jozi – top 15 bars, pubs, clubs and restaurants

Jozi’s bustling nightlife has so much by way of eclectic and vibey restaurants, pubs, and clubs that making a choice is difficult.

We make it easy for you – Here is our guide on Where to drink in Jozi – top 15 bars, pubs, clubs and restaurants …
Continued

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

South Africa’s peace parks – top 5 parks that transcend borders

Peace parks, also known as Transboundary Protected Areas (TBPA), allow animals to migrate freely between neighbouring countries in a return to their natural migration patterns. They promote tourism and goodwill between neighbouring countries.

It is also a potential tool to save a deteriorating ecology. Once parties or countries involved realise the importance of biological diversity, they are more likely to co-operate.  Environmental cooperation, in turn, can help resolve political and territorial conflicts. Sharing physical space and management responsibilities sustains peace among countries.

Real-life examples of such successes include the Seslous-Niassa Wildlife Corridor, and the Emerald Triangle conservation zone in Indochina.

But the bonus for visitors is the increased access to a greater variety of game, and far greater variety of wildlife habitats.

South Africa has eight peace parks, and one in the making. All are worthy of a visit. Here is more on 5 of them: Continued

Friday, 27 June 2014

A Visit to Harold Johnson Nature Reserve

When you live on a farm, like we do, and the closest Ster Kinekor is an hour’s drive and two toll gates away, it is sometimes necessary to make your own entertainment.

We did this a few Sunday’s ago when I suggested breakfast at the Harold Johnson Nature Reserve. The Skottel and breakfast supplies (including a tin of condensed milk …necessary for any game reserve cup of coffee) were loaded into the double cab and off we went. Continued

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Burnedale Farmers Market

We tried out the fantastic Burnedale Farmers Market over this past weekend. Having only started in mid-May, this market is going from strength to strength with the 25 stalls offering a wide range of products. I was particularly impressed with the purposefully built covered market area; stall holders and market goers will be dry on a rainy day but the light and airy space is perfect for the mostly sunny days the Dolphin Coast provides! Continued

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

South Africa’s four small wild cats – where to see them

The big cats in South Africa receive a lot of attention. In fairness lions, leopards and cheetah deserve the focus; most of these top predators are in danger – we live in their space, we hunt them illegally and kill them when they prey on livestock.

But South Africa is also home to four smaller cats – the African wild cat, the black-footed cat (now known as the small spotted cat), the caracal, and the serval. To this list I wanted to add the civet and genet but they are not, in fact, cats at all. Instead they belong to a family known as Viverrids, related to the mongoose and meerkatContinued