Whether you’re on honeymoon or just a vacation with your loved one, South Africa has an amazing range of truly memorable romantic places to stay. Here’s the pick of eight …
About South Africa
Post-apartheid South Africa is one of the most compelling – if not THE most compelling — destination on the continent. For tourists seeking a diverse one-stop shop of experiences, landscapes, activities and cultures, South Africa can’t be beat.
From the urban rhythms of the flagship cities like Cape Town, Durban, Johannesburg and Port Elizabeth, to the epic wildlife of the 21 national parks and reserves, to the vineyards of Stellenbosch and the wildflowers of Namaqua, South Africa is a place where you can see it all and do it all.
The temperate climate and relatively compact size (compared to the US or India, for example) make South Africa a viable destination for all seasons and for border-to-border exploration. With cheap internal flights, trains and buses, it’s possible to be at Cape Point, where two of the world’s biggest oceans meet one day, hoof it among herds of zebra in the hot, dry savanna of Kruger Park the next day, and swoop down the ski slopes of Tiffindell in the Drakensberg mountains the next.
And if you’re coming from the US or Europe, the falling exchange rate has made a South African holiday more affordable now than probably at any other time in history.
History, of course, is still being made in South Africa, which is less than one generation removed from the harsh, punitive apartheid regime that made virtual prisoners of more than 80% of the population. This recent strife is remembered and commemorated throughout the country in tours, monuments and museums that should be mandatory for visitors seeking to understand the complex dynamics at play all around them.
And though there have been many bumps along the road toward democracy, economic progress and racial integration, the optimism, entrepreneurial spirit and pride of the people shows through in every face – from the Indian restaurateur in the corner curry shop, to the Zulu taxi driver, to the Afrikaans farmer.
Safety: The crime rate is high in the poorer areas and townships, but by and large South Africa is much safer than pundits and pessimists make it out to be. Sticking to touristed areas and taking sensible precautions like keeping valuables out of sight, not walking alone after dark, and avoiding driving into unfamiliar areas alone will go a long way toward keeping you safe.