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Things to do in

South Africa

Our most recommended things to do in South Africa

Hermanus: Boat Based Whale Watching Experience

1. Hermanus: Boat Based Whale Watching Experience

Board your vessel for the day and receive a safety briefing before starting your whale watching adventure. In good weather conditions travellers will be allowed on the top-deck before departure for great unobstructed views, otherwise they will be allowed on top only after the whales have been found. Travel out onto the ocean taking in great views as you go.  Once the whales have been spotted, the vessel is allowed to move closer to the whales where it stops and the engines disengage is to prevent the whales from being injured by the propellers. Experience for yourself the astonishment of being so close to these majestic creatures.  As the whales are curious creatures, they might move up to the vessel for some 'people watching'. See a variety of other marine wildife such as dolphins and seals as you coast along the water. As you travel through the day and spot these beautiful creatures learn more about them from your crew, before they take you back to land after a once in a lifetime experience. 

Hartbeespoort: Daily Boat Cruises

2. Hartbeespoort: Daily Boat Cruises

Enjoy a luxurious, 2-hour boat cruise on the placid waters of the Hartbeepoort Dam. With 3 tours departing daily, at 10:00 AM, 1:00 PM, and 4:00 PM, pick the time that fits your schedule and hit the water. Located within the Kommando Nek Nature Preserve, gaze at the protected nature that surrounds you, showcasing the abundance of South Africa’s flora and fauna. Upon boarding the boat, you’ll be treated to a welcome drink as you depart to survey the stunning dam’s waters. With all daily cruises, enjoy a luxurious spread of traditional South African hot and cold finger foods. After your cruise is over and you return to the dock, your entrance pass to the nature preserve will still be valid, so get out there and explore the beauty of the South African countryside.

Hermanus: Whale and Dolphin Watching Boat Trip

3. Hermanus: Whale and Dolphin Watching Boat Trip

Discover Hermanus, one of the best destinations for watching marine mammals, on a boat trip with a whale specialist guide. Sail to areas that receive seasonal visits from southern right and humpback whales along with year-round sightings of Bryde’s whales and dolphins. Enjoy refreshments onboard. Sail on a purpose-built catamaran ensures maximum passenger comfort and spectacular viewing opportunities. During the tour, the crew is on hand to make sure everyone has a great experience, from helping get the perfect photo to serving complimentary light refreshments. The guide, a whale specialist, will interpret the marine life encountered en route and provide insight into the behavior of the whales while the action is taking place. The expert videographer will ensure the best footage is captured.

St Lucia: Hippo and Crocodile Cruise on a 15-Seat Vessel

4. St Lucia: Hippo and Crocodile Cruise on a 15-Seat Vessel

Witness hippos, Nile crocodiles, and hundreds of bird species onboard a cruise departing from St Lucia. This two-hour safari gets you up close to the residents of the estuary. Discover St Lucia iSimangaliso Wetland Park, one of the largest Estuarine systems in Africa. Travel aboard an exclusive 15-seater vessel with experienced and knowledgable skippers and rangers onboard. They will be happy to answer any questions you may have and furnish you with some incredible facts and information on the area.

Durban: 30-Minute Harbor Boat Cruise

5. Durban: 30-Minute Harbor Boat Cruise

This tour will take you on an unforgettable trip around Durban. Durban Harbor is the biggest and busiest harbor in the southern hemisphere. The harbor tours are especially educational for kids, as the boat takes them to points of interest in Africa’s largest harbor and shows them the route through which ships enter the harbor, discharge cargo, and exit. The skipper will teach the passengers about the port and its operation. If the weather conditions are favourable, the boat may go further out from the shore. The skipper is in close contact with the passengers and will give you a comprehensive guided tour. The trip will either take you down the Maydon Wharf Channel or to the City and Cor Container terminal.

Cape Town: Robben Island Ferry Tour with 1-Way Hotel Pickup

6. Cape Town: Robben Island Ferry Tour with 1-Way Hotel Pickup

Take the ferry to Robben Island and tour the prison where Nelson Mandela was confined. Learn about South Africa's history of Apartheid and life in the prison from a former prisoner. Depart from Cape Town on a shared bus to the V&A Waterfront. Collect your ticket and make your way to the Nelson Mandela Gateway to Robben Island. Sail out to the island on a 45-minute journey. On arrival, embark on a bus tour of the island before visiting the prison and the cell where Nelson Mandela was kept for 18 of his 27 prison years. Gain an insight into the history and conditions of the prison from a former prisoner. After the tour, return to Cape Town and be dropped off at the V&A Waterfront. Here you will be free to return to your accommodation independently or continue touring the beautiful city.

Cape Town: Atlantis Dunes Quadbike Adventure

7. Cape Town: Atlantis Dunes Quadbike Adventure

Traverse soft sand dunes on the back of a quad bike, also known as an ATV, on this outdoor adventure in the Atlantis Dunes just north of Cape Town. Take a short drive up the beautiful West Coast of Africa and you'll find the Witzands Aquifer Nature Reserve. An important conservation area protecting the Atlantis Aquifer and native wildlife, the reserve is also home to some of the best spots for quad biking with dunes up to 50 meters high. Check-in at the Parks office once you arrive and meet your instructor and guide, who will assist you with obtaining your parks permit. Once the paperwork has been handled, your instructor will take you through an introduction to quad biking and a thorough safety briefing. Now that you're comfortable with the quad bike, follow your guide out into the dunes to enjoy an hour-long, adrenaline-pumping ride in the soft sands. Explore the dunes and marvel at the surrounding landscape, including views of Table Mountain as you complete your ATV adventure.

Full-Day All Inclusive Safari with Traditional Braai Lunch

8. Full-Day All Inclusive Safari with Traditional Braai Lunch

Your experienced and enthusiastic guide will do their best to locate as much of the game available in the area and interpret their behavior for you during your drive. The first few hours of the tour are usually good to see antelope, zebra and lion. As this safari covers all time periods of the day, you should have the opportunity to see most game species. Stopping for a tea and coffee break at around 10:30 AM, you will continue on the game drive for sightings of elephants and buffalo near the watering holes. At lunchtime you can enjoy a delicious South African braai with juice, mineral water, beer and white wine. After lunch continue on the safari before being returned to your place of accommodation. Refreshments will be served throughout the drive.

Cape Town: Coastal Catamaran Cruise

9. Cape Town: Coastal Catamaran Cruise

Enjoy a one-hour scenic coastal cruise aboard a luxury power catamaran. The vessel will take you from the historic V&A Waterfront area on an adventure out to sea. Throughout the cruise, you'll travel along the Atlantic coastline to the Green Point Lighthouse before then traveling back to the harbor. With spectacular mountain and city views, the cruise provides perfect ocean views over many of Cape Town’s splendors. Your one-hour cruise operates daily, with regular departures from Quay 5. With a cash bar on board for refreshments as well as great service, this is a trip not to be missed.

Knysna: 75-Minute Lagoon Boat Cruise

10. Knysna: 75-Minute Lagoon Boat Cruise

The tour departs from Thesan Island Harbour Town and heads out onto the pristine Knysna Lagoon, home to an array of native birds and marine life. On board the ‘Oyster Boat', spend a leisurely 75-minutes exploring the lagoon as you sail to the breathtaking and imposing Knysna Heads. As you glide along the waters, sit back and relax whilst soaking up the famous South African sunshine with the wind in your hair. From start to finish the tour provides breathtaking views of the surrounding waters as well as the Knysna coastline. During the boat ride your guide shares fascinating insight into the history, heritage, and culture of Knysna, from a local’s perspective.

Other Sightseeing Options in South Africa

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What people are saying about South Africa

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 18,647 reviews

Well organised and excellent boat to go out into the bay. Good, entertaining and informative commentary from the guide/host. Saw 2 groups of Southern Right whales - male/female/young. Whales surrounded the boat and were behaving normally. Excellent views and a good post trip video produced and available at extra cost -> and worth it as the views of the whales provided a better aerial perspective. Recommended

We thoroughly enjoyed the aquarium. We had a relative in a wheelchair, borrowed from the aquarium, and we asked the Manager if we could borrow it to get the shopping mall to get to the next wheelchair hire, he very kindly walked us to the shopping mall and waited whilst we got the new chair! So kind and helpful :)

It was our first time with the children going on the aerial cableway... the journey up was definitely an eye-opener, but I must say the journey back down was a bit more relaxed

If you truly want to experience the rich culture of the locals in Bo-Kaap, this is a definite MUST DO activity. Food was amazing. Such a great experience.

The whole experience was informative and gave a brilliant insight into the various village lives.