This twelve Day South African holiday combines the iconic city of Cape Town with a road trip along the Garden Route and a two-night stay in a private Game Reserve.
South Africa is one of my favourite holiday destinations. I have been there twice – and I rarely go back to the same place! In fact I would go back again in a heartbeat. Where else can you find stunning scenery, captivating cities and wonderful wildlife all on one holiday? The cost of living is so low, there is only a two hour time difference (so no jet-lag) and there is so much to do. From city breaks to safaris, wine tasting to shark cage diving, and let’s not forget the amazing beaches – a South African holiday has got it all.
I have teamed up with Hayes & Jarvis, the luxury long haul specialists, who offer bespoke holidays to South Africa and beyond. They have been tailor making dream holidays for over 65 years and are a sister company to American Holidays. You can read more about my thoughts on Hayes & Jarvis long haul holidays from Ireland here. They feature many South African holidays on their website, but I liked this 12 day South African holiday because it is similar to the trip that I took earlier this year, and also happens to be malaria free. I liked the price too 😉 – €2299 including flights, hotels, transfers, car-hire and all meals on safari, this is great value for such a superb trip. I have outlined the itinerary below, but bear in mind you can add or change it to suit your requirements, simply talk to the expert team at Hayes & Jarvis and they will tailor make an itinerary for you.
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Cape Town : 3 Nights
Your first port of call is the iconic city of Cape Town where you will be staying in the 5* Hilton Cape Town City Centre hotel. Located right in the centre of town, just minutes from the colourful houses of Bo Kaap and with easy access to the Waterfront, this hotel is highly rated on tripadvisor and ideally located to explore all that Cape Town has to offer. Climb Table Mountain, visit Robben Island and drive the Cape Peninsula Drive, there is so much to do here – you can even paraglide off Signal Hill if you are feeling adventurous!
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Hermanus : 2 Nights
You will then set off on one of the world’s best road trips along the Garden Route. Your first stop is Hermanus, the hub of South Africa’s Whale Coast. If you want to go whale watching, this is the place to do it. Note whale watching is seasonal ( optimum time June – December ) so if you are planning a visit outside this time, talk to the staff in Hayes & Jarvis and they will recommend an alternative stop for you. Perhaps a visit to the Winelands? 🍷You will be staying in the highly rated Auberge Burgundy Guesthouse, which is located in the historic centre of Hermanus. With craft shops, art galleries and restaurants on your doorstep and a swimming pool on site, this friendly guesthouse is a great choice to experience South Africa’s Whale Coast.
Oudtshoorn: 2 Nights
Leave Hermanus behind to drive onwards to Oudsthoorn, in the Klein Karoo area of South Africa. Renowned as being the ostrich capital of the world, it actually offers so much more. There are several wildlife safaris available here. You can meet meerkats, go cage diving with crocodiles (who knew that was even a thing?) or visit the hugely impressive Cango Caves – Africa’s largest show cave system. You will be staying in the De Opstal Country Lodge, a restored lodge offering a unique stay in original farm buildings, dating back to the 1830’s.
Knysna: 2 Nights
This small town is one of the most popular on the Garden Route. With stunning beaches, a trendy harbour and a temperate climate, it is a great place to stop at any time of year. There are countless outdoor activities available, from kayaking to paragliding but if you just want to chill out and relax, head down to the waterfront area and enjoy some nice cocktails with seaviews. You will be staying in the 5* St. James of Kynsna Country House Hotel. Located right on the lagoon, this family run hotel offers luxury suites with superb service.
Kariega Game Reserve : 2 Nights
Saving the best for last, you will spend your final two nights in a private game reserve on the Eastern Cape. There is nothing like being in the African bush searching for wildlife, wondering if you will see the elusive leopard or a herd of elephants. It is one of the most incredible travel experiences I have had and it is world’s apart from every day life. Catching up with fellow travellers over dinner, wondering if they saw the same wildlife, and listening to stories from the expert rangers will fill you with lifelong memories.
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Set in over 10,000 hectares of African wilderness, the family run and owned Kariega private game reserve offers ‘Big 5’ game viewing in an authentic African setting. You can enjoy two game drives per day or choose a river cruise, canoeing adventure or even a guided bush walk. You will be staying in a one bedroom chalet in Kariega’s Main Lodge, which has been expertly integrated into the surrounding bush and offers a large private viewing deck. It also features all mod cons such as an en-suite bathroom, satellite TV and air conditioning in the bedroom.
This itinerary is just one of many of the South African holidays that Hayes & Jarvis feature. They will also tailor make any itinerary to suit you. If you want some more beach time, wine time or want an adrenaline filled trip – let their expert staff know and they will arrange it for you.
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This South Africa holiday post was sponsored by Hayes & Jarvis but all views as always are my own.