South Africa offers bucket-list travel experiences at a price that is more affordable today than ever before. We're talking about unique African beaches, bush, big 5 wildlife, world-class food and wine and great hospitality. The weak South African rand means African travel nirvana is available to even the tightest budget.
Unlike the rest of Africa, most South African tourist destinations charge in South African Rands (ZAR), to locals and tourists alike (and certainly at African Budget Safaris, we do), making it extremely affordable. We've listed ten of our favourite things to do, with their average prices in different currencies.
*Please note, US dollar ($), UK pound (£), Euro (€) and Australian Dollar (AUD) prices correct at time of going to press, using exchange rates as at 2015/12/11 on www.xe.com.
1. Do The World's Highest Bridge-Based Bungee Jump
The spectacular Bloukrans Bungee is recognised as the highest bridge-based bungee jump on earth.
Price: R900 / $58 / £39 / €53.40 / AUD80.70
Situated just outside Plettenberg Bay, on the beautiful Garden Route, is the Bloukrans Bridge, 216 m above the river below. Here you can bungee jump, and get your blood pumping and your heart beating overtime. Adrenaline junkie heaven with the guys from Face Adrenalin.
2. Take A 5-Day Safari To Kruger Park
This is bucket list stuff. See the Big Five (and so much more!) in one of the world’s iconic game parks.
Price: R10,000 / $650 / £430 / €600 / AUD900
Experience true Africa – the sights, sounds and smells – and see the animals happily living in their natural habitat. Watch the sun set over the bush and see the stars unpolluted by city lights – you won’t believe how many there are – while you listen to lions roar, hyena laugh and crickets sing.
That's the price for this safari. Speak to one of our helpful ABS consultants to find out about our other great packages. We offer safaris to suit any budget!
3. Eat The Best Steak You'll Ever Have
South Africa is home to a great many world-class restaurants, and our steak will challenge the quality of cut you'll find in any country on earth.
Price: R175 / $11.40 / £7.50 / €10.40 / AUD15.70
South Africans know how to cook meat, and steak is our speciality. Treat yourself to a sumptuous steak at any one of the numerous fabulous restaurants. You'll find steak on most restaurant menus, but these are some of our favourites spots:
- HQ, Cape Town
- Brad’s Grill, Cape Town
- Turn ‘n Tender, Johannesburg
- Wombles, Johannesburg
- Butcher Shop and Grill, Johannesburg
- Butcher Boys, Durban
Don’t forget to pair your meal with a delectable glass of Cabernet Sauvignon from one of South Africa’s award-winning wine farms.
4. River Rafting Down The Orange River
The Orange is the longest river in South Africa, rising from the Drakensberg Mountains and flowing through the starkly beautiful Richtersveld, offering incredible scenery.
Price: R4,500 / $300 / £190 / €270 / AUD400 (4-day trip)
Can there be anything better than floating down a river in a canoe and sleeping under the vast starry African sky? It’s just you (and your guides), the water, and the sounds of Africa.
5. Order A World-Class Cappuccino In The Shadow Of Table Mountain
South African coffee culture is on the rise. Here you'll pay less than half of what Starbucks charges, and you'll get a better cup of coffee too.
Price: R25 / $1.62 / £1.07 / €1.48 / AUD2.24
Cape Town is best known for its mountain, spectacular beaches and beautiful winelands (and wine). But that’s not all there is. In recent years, coffee culture has grown in leaps and bounds, and it’s a coffee-lover’s mecca. Walk down any street and you’ll come across a cool coffee shop. Some of our favourites include:
Truth Coffee Roasting, Buitenkant Street, Cape Town CBD
Department of Coffee, Ntlazane Street, Khayelitsha
Origin Coffee Roasters, Hudson Street, De Waterkant
Deluxe Coffeeworks, Church Street, Cape Town CBD
Hard-Pressed Café, Buitengracht Street, Foreshore
6. Paraglide Off Lions Head
Take in the breath-taking views across the Atlantic Ocean and the city bowl to Table Mountain as you drift noiselessly down to the pristeen coastline below.
Price: R1,150 / $75 / £50 / €68 / AUD103 (Tandem)
A walk up Lion’s Head at sunrise or sunset (or full moon) is an essential Cape Town ritual. You cannot know the city until you've ascended one of it's rocky rooftops. Lions Head, unlike Table Mountain, is a walk you can do by moonlight, and with considerably less physical exertion.
Take it a step further, get that adrenaline pumping and paraglide off it on a sunny morning with Fly Cape Town Paragliding. This is the closest you can get to flying like a bird.
7. Explore Africa's Most Dynamic City On Foot
The best way to appreciate 21st century Johannesburg, it's street art, shops and foodie destinations, is by taking an award-winning walking tour.
Price: R450 / $30 / £20 / €30 / AUD40 per person for a 2-hour grafitti tour for two people. The more people on the tour, the lower the price
Inner city Johannesburg has undergone a ‘phoenix from the ashes’ transformation over the last few years. Be amazed by the plethora of street art on a guided tour of the CBD with Past Experiences.
8. Pizza And A Beer In Maboneng
Follow your inner city tour by exploring the hip and happenin’ Maboneng district.
Price: R100 / $6.50 / £4.30 / €5.90 / AUD8.95
Chill out, drink craft beer and eat pizza with the cool crowd at The Bioscope’s Chalkboard. You won’t want to leave.
9. Day Pass Into The Kruger National Park
At 365 km long, 65 km wide and home to the Big 5, the world-renowned Kruger National Park is a once-in-a-lifetime spot to visit.
Price: R280 / $18.20 / £12.00 / €16.60 / AUD25.00
There is nothing that compares to seeing a lion hunting an impala in the wild, or a playful baby elephant following its herd.
10. Follow The Sun
Watch the sun rise over Africa from a hot air balloon
Float gently above the Magaliesberg and experience an African sunrise with only the local birdlife for company.
Price: from R1,600 / $104 / £69 / €95 / AUD143 (depending on number of people)
Bill Harrop’s ‘Original’ Balloon Safaris offer an hour’s trip, taking off from the Cradle of Humankind. Sip on champagne during or after the flight and follow it with a champagne breakfast at the Clubhouse Pavilion Restaurant. This is the life.
Watch the sun set from the top of Table Mountain
With views that stretch to the ends of the earth, this is just breath-taking.
Price for Return Cable Car Ticket: R120 / $7.80 / £5.15 / €7.10 / AUD10.70 (sunset special) or ZAR240 / $15.60 / £10.30 / €14.20 / AUD21.40 (full price)
Sunsets in Africa have to be seen to be believed. Sunset spots are plentiful. A really special one, though, is on top of Table Mountain. Walk up (for free!) and catch the cable car down, or just cable car it both ways, and watch the sun set over one of the world’s most beautiful cities. Out of peak season, they run a sunset special – half-price after 6 pm. Check their website to see if it’s on!
It’s hard to believe, but this list is just a smidgeon of what South Africa offers… You really can live the high life on a safari to SA!