Bo-Kaap (Cape Town)
Cape Town’s most colorful quarter is also steeped in history. It was formerly known as the Malay Quarter and hosts the Nurul Islam Mosque which dates back to the mid 19th century. Walk the cobblestone streets, peruse the shops, and make sure you check out the Bo-Kaap Museum, the oldest standing original house in the quarter. It was built way back in the eighteenth century and is a testament to the Muslim heritage of the area.
Robben Island (Cape Town)
Robben Island is the location where Nelson Mandela served his time as a political prisoner in the blank. Therefore it is an important historical landmark and a must-see sight for anyone visiting South Africa. Catch a ferry from the city and take a guided tour through this World Heritage Site.
Table Mountain (Cape Town)
Table Mountain, which is featured in South Africa’s national flag, is an important natural formation for South African culture. This top destination is accessible by a multitude of options, but by far the most popular are hiking and cable car. Taking the latter offers breathtaking views of the city. Once you reach the top of Table Mountain you can explore the many wonders, both natural and man-made, that the plateau has to offer.
Gold Reef City (Johannesburg)
This theme park located in Johannesburg is a family-friendly destination sure to please everyone in your party. Its location on top of an old gold mine makes it a historical experience as well as a thrilling one. Many of the rides are mining themed, such as the apt but frighteningly named Miner’s Revenge. Make sure you try the Tower of Terror, which offers riders the opportunity to experience a positive G-force of 6.3 Gs.
Also of note is the Anaconda, which is the tallest inverted roller coaster in Africa. Gold Reef City also hosts a 4D movie theater, which features 3D and motion effects, as well as a wealth of hotels and restaurants. It’s truly an all-inclusive experience.
This bustling district in Johannesburg is the perfect destination for a little afternoon fun. In addition to housing- you guessed it- a casino, the Montecasino complex boasts an impressive theatre (the Teatro), as well as numerous shops. The Teatro is a newer addition to the Montecasino complex, and it hosts numerous high profile shows each year. Recently the smash hit The Lion King was performed at Montecasino. Finally, at the complex, you can enjoy a ride in a hot air balloon called the “Jozi Eye”.
Voortrekker Monument (Pretoria)
If you have any interest in apartheid politics, then this monument in Pretoria is for you. The granite structure, which is 130 feet every way around, sits on a hilltop south of Pretoria. It’s dedicated to the Voortrekkers who left the cape in the early to mid eighteen hundred.
In 2011 it was named a World Heritage Site. This unique structure has many influences, with some saying it resembles such European monuments as France’s Dome des Invalides, while others cannot deny its German roots. One of the most striking features of the monument must be the aperture at the top of the dome. At noon this hole shows the sun as a tiny dot in the center of the ceiling, a clear reference to ancient Egyptian practices.
Game Drive (Kruger National Park)
Here’s your opportunity to get up close and personal with the big five safari animals. A game drive is the best way to experience wildlife in South Africa. While you can choose to go on a self-guided driving tour, it’s best to have a guide. One of the advantages of taking these tours is your guide can communicate with his peers all over the park, and be alerted at a moment’s notice to the location of exotic wildlife.
There are also night tours available, which are a truly unique experience. On a night tour of Kruger National Park, you can view nocturnal animals not usually available, such as leopards stalking their prey or perched lazily in trees. Some other animals you can expect to see on a game drive include African elephants, Vervet monkeys, and zebras.