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First Impressions of South Africa – 30 things you need to know
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First Impressions of South Africa – 30 things you need to know

30 things you need to know when first you arrive in South Africa - South Africa is a land of contradictions. That it is beautiful is indisputable. That it is also a mix of cultures, ideas, customs and traditions that are unique to the country is something most visitors need to experience first-hand. But here are a few insider tips for first-time visitors ... 1. When you arrive you must have a return ticket 2. and at least two blank pages in your passport 3. It is difficult to find legal work in South Africa, as a foreigner, as we don't have a Working Holiday scheme 4. But in SA...
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What to wear in the Northern Cape – The Northern Cape Packing List
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What to wear in the Northern Cape – The Northern Cape Packing List

The Northern Cape has a unique climate, thanks to its being situated higher up and along the Namibian border. It is home to part of the immense Kalahari Desert, which means that a large proportion of the province is either arid or semi-arid. It is hot and dry. While this may not yield a particularly green and lush vegetation that is typical of provinces like Mpumalanga, the Northern Cape certainly does boast a beauty all its own. Summers in the Northern Cape are extremely hot and dry, particularly as one moves further north. Temperatures have been known to simmer at around 35 to 38 degr...
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Favourite Backpackers Lodges Across South Africa
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Favourite Backpackers Lodges Across South Africa

There is nothing like low-cost, independent travel to make you feel immensely at one with the world. The spirit of adventure and discovery that comes with uncovering new cultures and languages, seeing new places, and owning only what is on your back is liberating. ASHANTI LODGE, CAPE TOWN You'd be hard pressed to find such an atmospheric backpackers elsewhere, and its location is brilliant. This newly refurbished Victorian-style house has modern, clean rooms, a pool area, wonderful balconies on which to simply chill, WiFi, gardens, a bar, an in-house restaurant, a travel centre to help yo...
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The A – Z of backbacking your way around South Africa
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The A – Z of backbacking your way around South Africa

The A - Z of backbacking your way around South Africa A is for Africa The forgotten continent. It's no less corrupt than China or Cambodia, no less safe than Columbia or Brazil, and no tougher than Nepal or India. So why aren't you here? B is for braais, boerewors and budget accommodation Budget accommodation, known collectively as 'backpackers', are usually rather colourful, fun affairs; some in beautiful, remote places. Braais are a national pastime that involve roasting vast quantities of boerewors over coals. C is for Cape Town The Mother City, Table Mountain, wine routes, beaches (l...
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15 tips on how to save for your next trip
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15 tips on how to save for your next trip

Friends often ask me how we manage to go away as often as we do. Somewhere in the disbelief at yet another trip, is the inference that we must have loads of money to be able to do as we do. Far from it! Our monthly earnings would not make an investment broker sit up straighter. Our going away often has less to do with earning pot loads, and more to do with living frugally so that we have money over for fun – i.e. travel. Here are a few ideas on how to find the money for travelling - Our 15 tips on how to save for your next trip ONE: MINIMISE DEBT Many of us are so deep in debt that mon...
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Visiting Cultural Villages in South Africa
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Visiting Cultural Villages in South Africa

To visit one of South Africa’s cultural villages is to get a sneak peek into the wonders and deep cultures of the African people. These villages are set up to invite visitors to see the traditional way of life of specific groups or tribes, including their cuisine, customs, rituals, songs, dance and family structure. These villages are as authentic as it gets and allow the visitors to interact with local folk, taste the food, watch the musical performances and learn more about the traditions of the people. These cultures and customs extend back many generations, sometimes even centuries, and...
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The Majesty of the Rovos Rail
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The Majesty of the Rovos Rail

On Saturday we boarded a train headed all the way to Pretoria Accommodation from Cape Town.  Not just any train, it was the elegant lady of all trains: The Rovos Rail. What started as a hobby for Rohan Vos soon turned into a business and once you set eyes on this train, you’ll recognize it as a labour of love.  He began salvaging old train carriages from the 1920’s and restoring them together with the Railway Preservation Society. This train has many routes going through South Africa, to Victoria Falls, Dar es Salaam and also to Cairo.  But this slow, romantic way of travel is really about ...
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Snapshot South Africa – 20 interesting and informative facts
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Snapshot South Africa – 20 interesting and informative facts

South Africa is vast - 1 233 404 km² – making it the 25th largest country in the world, twice the size of Texas, and five times the size of Great Britain. South Africa has the second highest waterfall in the world (the Tugela Falls) And the third largest canyon in the world (Blyde River Canyon). We also lay claim to the longest wine route in the world – Route 62 through the Klein Karoo, from Cape Town to Port Elizabeth – 850km. South Africa's wine tourism was rated the best developed in the World by International Wine Review, 2012. (see South Africa's Wine Estates) South Africa ...
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What to Wear in the Garden Route – The Garden Route Packing List
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What to Wear in the Garden Route – The Garden Route Packing List

The Garden Route is one of South Africa’s most popular attractions. It is a stretch that extends from Storms River in the Eastern Cape to Mossel Bay in the Western Cape, and is known for its lush abundance and natural beauty. The route is more than the major motorway, the N2, which carries drivers along the southern coastline of South Africa. Rather, it offers a number of tourist attractions, fun activities and gorgeous vistas. The Garden Route is flanked by the ocean on one side, and the many mountains of the Eastern Cape and Western Cape on the other. This gives it a rather unique climate...
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5 unanticipated benefits to travelling South Africa
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5 unanticipated benefits to travelling South Africa

People come to South Africa for many reasons – the vastness of the place, the wildlife, whales, sharks, penguins, outdoor adventure, wine, blue skies, beaches, the unique cultures, the lifestyle... But there are also unanticipated benefits to travelling South Africa. I can think of five ... You'll save money For those who live in South africa the cost of living consistently inflates, leaving many living below the poverty line - we might have achieved democracy, but we have yet to achieve economic transformation. And yes, if you are comparing it with other less developed African countr...
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What to Wear in Gauteng – The Gauteng Packing List
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What to Wear in Gauteng – The Gauteng Packing List

Gauteng has a distinctly drier climate than the coastal provinces. It does not suffer from humidity, thanks to its higher altitude. Summers are hot and sunny and winters are cool to cold; each season bringing with it its own appeal and magic. Summer days average between 26 and 30 degrees Celsius in the epicentre of Gauteng, Johannesburg. Winters are chilly, with icy mornings that warm up to about 15 degrees at lunchtime. However, due to the mountainous topography, temperatures throughout Gauteng can differ quite dramatically. For example, Pretoria Accommodation, which is only a short drive ...
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10 great ways to cope when your flight is delayed
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10 great ways to cope when your flight is delayed

You're hemmed in on one side by a Japanese tour group making its way to Sun City, whilst the family next to you can barely contain their three-year old in the throes of an extraordinarily bad hair day, when there is a public announcement that your connecting flight is delayed. Flight delays are a large part of the travel experience. They happen. But there are ways to survive them ... 1. EXPLORE YOUR OPTIONS The most logical place to start is at the information desk to double-check the delay and to see if you can change your flight to another. If that is too busy, get online and have a...
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Sussed on travel – 10 top tech travel gadgets
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Sussed on travel – 10 top tech travel gadgets

Sussed on travel – 10 top tech travel gadgets - Much as you'd love to have a holiday from them, rather than with them, when travelling, particularly overseas, there are some travel gadgets you just can't leave at home... TOP 4 ESSENTIAL TECHNOLOGIES FOR TRAVEL SMARTPHONE Smartphones are now virtually mandatory, but more so when travelling. Better still is an unlocked smartphone (it's apparently quite complicated to unlock once it's locked), which makes it cheaper to plug in SIM cards local to the countries you intend visiting. BUT buying an unlocked smartphone is expensive. Get a secon...
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How To Stay Safe In the Water – A guide to avoiding Sharks
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How To Stay Safe In the Water – A guide to avoiding Sharks

Swimming in the sea is never guaranteed to be safe, besides the tides and crashing waves you are in the territory of a vast amount of marine life and that alone comes with many risks. The biggest fear for many beach goers and surfers though, is coming into contact with a shark. There are hundreds of species of sharks in the sea, many of them occur off our coastline. Not all of them pose a threat to humans, there are a very small handful that you, as a surfer or swimmer, are more likely to come into contact with. Photograph: Tiger Shark How To Stay Safe In the Water / A Guide to Avoidi...
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10 gap year ideas that aren’t just for 19 year-olds
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10 gap year ideas that aren’t just for 19 year-olds

Gap years are not only for those who have just left school. People take gap years between jobs, between marriages, at crucial 'life' stages, to celebrate an event, or even as a family. Some people simply travel by the seat-of-their-pants and wing it, doing odd jobs when and if they want to; others sign up for specific programmes that will teach them something and allow them to serve in a way that makes a difference. Whether you're the latter or the former there is plenty of scope, and numerous websites, for inspiration and opportunities both at home in South Africa and abroad. Sharing sp...
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