South Africa can be considered a world all of its own. Between the diversity of ecosystems, wildlife, and five-star accommodations, there are an abundance of activities and adventures waiting to be discovered. With the South African Rand-to-US exchange rates at their lowest since 2009, now is the perfect time to travel to South Africa. We’ve highlighted some of our favorite experiences beyond the bush below.
Indulge in Gourmet South Africa
Indulge your gastronomical desires with a trip to some of our of favorite South African destinations to sample some of the best food in the country. From private Bedouin dinners at Royal Malewane prepared by Grand Chef John Jackson to wine and chocolate tasting in the winelands, it’s a journey every self proclaimed “foodie” will enjoy. At Le Quartier Francais‘s Tasting Room, indulge in a 5 or 8 course meal prepared by Chef Margot Janse.
For a truly hands on experience, try a Cape Malay cooking tour in the home of a local community member. You’ll use local ingredients and learn about the culinary influences of the Cape Malay favorites such as samosas and roti – a curry and minced lamb or chicken filled flaky pastry. After the cooking lesson, enjoy the food you helped prepare with your host.
Take a Ride on the Rovos Rail
What better way to see the diverse countryside of South Africa than from a luxurious suite on one of two classic trains on the Rovos Rail? Pass through grasslands, mountain ranges, and the Cape Winelands as the train makes its weekly trip between Pretoria and Cape Town. On the journey you’ll stop in the historic Victorian village of Matijesfontein to visit the museum and in Kimberly for a city tour and visit to the Diamond Mine Museum and the world’s largest man-made excavation, the Big Hole. Enjoy meals in the formal dining car, prepared by award winning chefs and complimented by fine South African wines.
Visit the Ellerman Contemporary Art Gallery
Curators of the Ellerman Contemporary Art Gallery worked for three decades to assemble a collection of fine art, the soul of Ellerman House, located just ten minutes from the center of Cape Town and the V&A Waterfront. The gallery features modern art from local South African artists and originals from over a century ago that that reflect the history of the country, including at 1910 Volschenk of undeveloped Camps Bay. The gallery is rotated every season, giving guests the opportunity to see new pieces each time they visit.
Wine Tasting in the Winelands
The Winelands of South Africa is a beautiful region of rolling hills covered in vines, surrounded by volcanic mountains, and dotted with Cape Dutch homesteads. With the perfect climate for wine production, its no wonder so many award-winning wines come from the region. Enjoy tastings paired with chocolate at award-winning estates on the Stellenbosch, Franschhoek, and Paarl wine route.
The Inside Scoop
by Sara Kramer, Luxury Travel Consultant
While staying at Grootbos I had the opportunity to sit out on the cliffs of Walker Bay and watch the Southern Right Whales while sipping a gin and tonic and eating fresh oysters. The experience was heaven in my book and one I won’t soon forget.