South Africa is one of the most amazing and geographically varied countries on the African continent. It features territory which ranges from the rolling, fertile plains of the high veld and the wide open savannah of the Eastern Transvaal to the vast Kalahari Desert and the peaks of the Drakensberg Mountains.
There are almost unlimited opportunities for adventure travel of many different types in South Africa including scuba diving, skydiving, white-water rafting, mountain-climbing and trekking. And with hotels in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Sandton being easy to reserve, it’s quite easy to make arrangements for a starting point.
While all of South Africa’s different regions offer many opportunities for adventure travel, the focus of adventure in South Africa is the safari which allows guests to encounter Africa’s untamed wildlife in its natural surrounding on unforgettable game drives.
South Africa is home to two of the world’s most renowned wildlife reserves, namely the Kruger National Park and the Kalahari Gemsbok National Park. The Kalahari Gamsbok National Park is a narrow piece of land extending northward into the vast expanse of the Kalahari Desert. The Kalahari Gemsbok National Park is an area of rugged beauty, with shifting dunes, wide-open views, and great herds of springbok and gemsbok.
With South Africa’s excellent road and rail systems, its abundance of elegant and luxurious accommodations, and its bountiful farmlands and vineyards, this sub-Saharan African country allows visitors ample opportunity for more five star comfort along with adventuresome excitement.
South Africa is one of the best counties in the world for tourists to participate in adventure activities and to experience just what being alive is all about. Adventure activities, adventure sports and adventure tours are available for travellers all over South Africa. Visitors can choose activities which meet their desires including heart racing, mind reeling and stomach churning.
River trips range from mostly scenic to grade five whitewater rafting excursions. The art of canyoning – known as kloofing in South Africa – is another popular adventure activity.
Thousands of kilometres of hiking trails wind around the country in desert, forest, mountain or coastal terrain, many with mountain bike trails adjacent. There are wonderful easy horse trails through vineyards, on the beach or in the mountains and – for the more adventurous – horseback safaris are also available in big game country.
Adventures in South Africa
• Elephant Back Safaris
• Hot Air Balloon Safaris
• Bungee jumping, bridge swinging
• Canoeing, rafting, kayaking
• Deep Sea Fishing
• Horseback safaris and trails
• Mountain biking
• Rock climbing
• Scuba diving
• Sport & recreational flying
• Surfing, windsurfing, kite surfing
Safaris in the Kruger National Park, South Africa
Stretching over 350 miles from north to south, and teeming with wildlife, the famous Kruger National Park in South Africa is justly rated as one of the world’s finest game reserves. The Kruger National Park is home to more species of wildlife than any other game sanctuary on the African continent, and is one of Africa’s few remaining havens for big cats including cheetahs, leopards and lions. Furthermore, substantial numbers of elephant, buffalo, zebra, rhino, giraffe, hippopotamus, impala, and kudu can be observed here in their natural habitat.
The Kruger National Park is also an outstanding destination for birdwatchers, offering a scarcely believable diversity and abundance of species.
Safaris in the Kalahari Gemsbok National Park, South Africa
More remote and rugged than the Kruger National Park, the Kalahari Gemsbok National Park is situated at the southern extremity of one of the world’s great desert regions – the Kalahari. Despite the relative absence of lush vegetation, this national park abounds in wildife, including amazing large herds of springbok, gemsbok, eland, and wildebeest. Unsurprisingly, these herds also attract another expected visitor: the Kalahari lion.
Visitors to the Kalahari in South Africa have to do without the luxurious accommodations which the Kruger National Park and its adjacent game reserves have to offer, but for the hardier traveller the Kalahari Gemsbok can be a destination of unparalleled grandeur.
Canoeing the Orange River in South Africa
The great Orange River originates in the Lesotho highlands, where it begins a long, meandering sweep westward across the centre of South Africa. By the time the Orange River reaches the Atlantic Ocean on the Namibian border it has travelled a staggering 2,340 kilometres. Wide and gentle, with just enough rapids to get the heart beating, this river in South Africa is ideal for canoe safaris.
The most popular area for canoe safaris on the Orange River is the Northwest, where the river wends through the sere realms of Bushmanland. The banks of the Orange river, however, are typically lush, a magnificent oases for viewing birds and game.
Camel Safaris in South Africa
Though camel travel invariably brings to mind desert visions of Arabia, North Africa, and Asia, it is increasingly becoming a popular safari alternative in South Africa.
There are two unique desert environments which are suitable for camel safari’s in South Africa namely the Kalahari and the Bushmanland. While the Kalahari offers a more duned landscape, Bushmanland is semi-arid and pierced by the Orange River. Both these scenic regions are abundant in game and wildlife.
Walking Safaris at the Ngala Private Game Reserve, South Africa
Ngala, meaning “Lion” in Shangaan, offers incredible opportunities to see several prides of lion in the wild, freely roaming this spectacular game reserve in the Kruger National Park.
The Ngala Private Game Reserve is a sanctuary for Africa’s wildlife treasures with ample opportunity to see incredible animals such as elephants, white rhino, giraffe, buffalo and spotted hyena. Visitors have the unique opportunity to witness the wild at night on an adventure packed game drive under the stars, tracking cheetah and the African wild dog, amongst others. Guests staying at the Ngala Game Reserve may also participate in the exciting Walking Safaris with professional trackers.
Romance and wilderness under the stars at Ngala Tented Camp makes for an exciting wildlife safari adventure. Flickering lanterns, starlit skies, and the sounds of the animals around you is flawlessly combined with sophisticated elegance.
This article was a guest post written by Ryan Mackie of South African Hotels.com
Safaris in Uganda Desk
African Adventure Travellers Ltd