Experience cities, beaches and wildlife on this South Africa family holiday. Starting in the beachside city of Cape Town, you have a few days to explore. Take the cable car to the top of Table Mountain for unparalleled views or catch a boat over to Robben Island to learn about this nation’s history of struggle and in particular, the role played by Nelson Mandela.
After a few days enjoying the city you’ll drive into the majestic mountains of the winelands and from here you can watch whales from the shores of the De Hoop Nature Reserve. Next, you’ll visit Plettenberg Bay, where golden beaches and animal sanctuaries will compete for your time. Finish your holiday at Kariega Game Reserve, where your malaria-free safaris will reveal sleeping lions and grazing zebras, as well as hippos cooling off alongside baby elephants in the river. It’s the perfect end to your family holiday in South Africa!
This itinerary can be tailored to suit your requirements please contact one of our consultants to start planning your dream trip.
Depart the UK from your chosen airport.
On arrival in South Africa you will be met at the airport and assisted with your hire car collection. Drive into the city before checking into your hotel for three nights.
You’ll be staying in Camps Bay which is set against the backdrop of the Twelve Apostles Mountain Range and right next to one of the best beaches in the city which kids will love! Spend your first day playing on the beach as a family and enjoying the crashing surf on this white beach. In the afternoon why not hop in the car and head down to the cape where kids will love spotting penguins on Boulders Beach and you can gaze off the most south westerly point of Africa into the Atlantic Ocean?
On your second day why not head into the city – wander around the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront, sail to Robben Island to explore the prison or take the cable car up to Table Mountain for views over the endless ocean. Finish your time here with a delicious seafood dinner by the beach – the perfect start to your family holiday in South Africa.
After a final walk along the beach, you’ll drive north to Franschhoek, just an hour’s drive from Cape Town in the middle of the wine region. On arrival you’ll check into your hotel for one night. This small town is full of boutique shops and vineyards, set amongst the stunning scenery of the surrounding mountains. For a glimpse into a working Cape Dutch farm, pay a visit to Babylonstoren where a gaggle of geese can be seen waddling down the paths and you can feast on fresh, local produce for lunch. The wineries in this area are beautiful so indulge in a short tasting while the kids have a run around through the vines.
After breakfast today you’ll drive down south to the De Hoop Nature Reserve. If you want to stop somewhere on the way, why not take a detour down to Cape Agulhas, the southernmost point of Africa. Here you can stand with a foot in the Indian Ocean and a foot in the Atlantic! On arrival you’ll check into the hotel for two nights.
De Hoop offers a great outdoor experience of the Cape region – sea, sand dunes and the vlei (wetlands) where rare plants and birds make their home in the Potberg Mountains. This area is perfect for families as you can easily spot bontebok (antelope), zebras, baboons and ostriches when you’re walking through the rich plains. There are plenty of guided activities you can choose, from boat trips to see otters and porcupines to bird or marine walks along the shore. Our favourite thing about De Hoop is the ability to do it all yourself!
You can choose self-catering accommodation here, which can be a nice break from eating out. There’s a local restaurant if you need it, as well as endless walking trails for the kids to explore. The reserve’s beaches are beautiful with many small, white sand bays where you can settle down with a picnic and look for whales breaching out in the ocean. At night, stars light up the whole sky and you can book a star gazing tour to learn about the constellations of the southern hemisphere. While you won’t see Africa’s ‘Big Five’ here, you will gain a rare glimpse into the natural environment, flora and fauna of the cape.
After a few days enjoying De Hoop Nature Reserve, today you’ll drive along the coast to Plettenberg Bay, where you can have some family beach time. On arrival at your hotel you’ll check in for three nights.
You have a couple of days here to relax and explore and this area is a great spot to enjoy the beaches of the south coast – whether you go swimming, build sandcastles or just relax in the sun. After a day at the beach why not spend your second day having fun with some African wildlife? You can visit Birds of Eden, Jukani Big Cat Sanctuary and Monkeyland all on one ticket which is great value for families. Spot lemurs swinging from their stripy tails, lions sunbathing and flamingos preening themselves in the water. If you want to add this ticket to your trip, just ask!
Your final stop on this South Africa family holiday is two nights at the malaria-free Kariega Game Reserve where you can enjoy some wildlife watching. Keep an eye out for elephants, lions and rhinos in the bush.
Today you’ll explore the Kariega Game Reserve, embarking on a morning and afternoon game drive. Look out for wildlife as the famous Big 5 reside here – lion, elephant, rhino, buffalo and leopard. The experienced rangers are great at finding the wildlife, whether it’s a leopard stalking an antelope across the plains or giraffes calmly munching their way through the treetops. Keep your eyes peeled for hippos lazing in the river, lionesses guarding their playful cubs and rhinos peacefully grazing under the trees.
When you’re not on safari, make the most of your luxury lodge accommodation and the viewing decks that overlook the savannah. Perhaps take a bush walk, go canoeing or just enjoy a delicious lunch. Each night, tales of the day’s wildlife encounters are retold around the fire as the stars twinkle overhead. Kariega is truly a magical place to finish your family’s fantastic trip.
After one final game drive you’ll drive your hire car to Port Elizabeth Airport, in time to catch your flight home.
The climate in South Africa is mild year round, however there are ‘seasons’ you may want consider when planning your trip along the Garden Route. They tend to experience rainfall during the winter months (June to August) when it tends to be greener all round. The rains come in with a cooler air, last maybe a day or two and are then usually followed by champagne days’ of crystal clear air, blue skies and brilliant colours!
The summer months (November to February) are usually warm or hot, and during December to January the surf is often at its best due to the south easterly winds.
If you'd like to get a feel for this trip, read our blog post How to do 2 weeks in South Africa with kids: Cape Town, the Garden Route & safari written by one of our consultants who's been there.
This itinerary is purely a suggestion, and can be tailor-made to your requirements, so please contact us with your dates and requests and we’ll put together a bespoke quotation for you.
11 nights in 3* standard accommodation.
Hotels in this category include: