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South Africa - Highlights

South Africa is one of the most diverse and enchanting countries in the world with exotic combinations of landscapes, people, history and culture. BAOBAB Travel offers not only fully tailor-made Responsible Travel itineraries throughout South Africa, combining well known destinations with unique and off the beaten track experiences, but also four Fair Trade Tourism certified travel packages.

The Fair Trade Cape and Garden Route is one of the most stunning and most visited places on the African continent. Table Mountain rise dramatically above the city of Cape Town and the region is also famous for its winelands, restaurants, township tours, whale watching, shark cage diving, canopy tours and stunning coastline. South Africa's premier attraction is its many national parks and private game reserves offering unsurpassed Fair Trade wildlife safaris. Visit the world renowned Kruger National Park, or choose a more exclusive and malaria free safari at one of the Private Game Reserves like Amakhala in the Eastern Cape.

Responsible Traveller EmagSouth Africa is surrounded by ocean on three sides and has a long coastline of about 3000 km, swept by the warm Agulhas current on the east coast and the cold Benguella current on the west coast. Combine shark cage diving and Fair Trade whale watching on the Cape's south coast with scuba diving in the warmer waters of KwaZulu Natal's east coast.

A visit to Cape Town and one of the many safari destinations can be combined with more off-the-beaten-track experiences like meeting the Venda people in Limpopo or exploring the Kalahari Desert and visiting Augrabies Falls. The country is crossed by many good quality national routes which makes South Africa the perfect self drive holiday destination. However if you prefer the reassurance and experience of a trained guide then guided tours and safaris can also be arranged.

For more country specific & responsible travel information please check the Responsible Traveller online magazine.

South Africa

This Classic Cape & Garden Route itinerary is one of our Fair Trade Tourism accredited packages and is ideal for the first time visitors to the Western Cape & South Africa. It includes all the major Cape Town and Garden Route highlights and offers time for shopping and good food in Cape Town, wine tasting in some of South Africa's most famous vineyards and visiting Table Mountain. It also gives you plenty of opportunity for sightseeing, enjoying the natural environment and South Africa's Rainbow Nation culture, good food, beach, and lots of different activities like whale watching (land and water based - seasonal), penguins and Big 5 wildlife safari in the malaria free Eastern Cape Game Reserve of Amakhala.

The trip and type of accommodation will suit couples, but can easily be tailored to accommodate families with children of varying ages. Although this trip is on a self-drive basis providing maximum flexibility, guided day trips and fully guided options are also available on request. To suit a range of budgets, we can tailor this trip with more standard accommodation or a nice mixture of both.

The Mehloding guided hiking trail in the Southern Drakensberg is one of our Fair Trade Tourism accredited package and fully community owned. The trail is located in the relatively unexplored southern Drakensberg, at the junction of the Eastern Cape, KwaZulu Natal, and southern Lesotho.

The trail covers 7 days with 6 overnight stops at simple, but comfortable lodges constructed by local people with traditional designs and materials. A local guide accompanies all hikes and provides information on the sights, attractions, local customs, and language.

The Mehloding trail takes you on a path of rich and diverse natural and cultural heritage of Xhosa and Sotho communities. The route traverses spectacular mountainous foothills and rural villages, taking in visits to ancient rock-art, sparkling streams, indigenous trees, medicinal plants, craft projects, and top of the world views.

Please be aware that this guided hiking trail is of moderate nature and the accommodation is simple, but clean and comfortable. Please note that this hiking trail does NOT run on set scheduled dates, so please contact us to check availability for particular dates.

Discover the Marine Big 5, whales, sharks, dolphins, seals and penguins, on this Fair Trade Tourism accredited whale watching tour. The best time to travel is during South Africa's winter season from July to November, but don't be put off by this. Winters in South Africa are nothing like the European and North American winters. It is also a lovely quiet time of year and with low season rates you get great value for money.

At least 37 species of whales and dolphins can be found in the waters off South Africa's coast, including Southern Right and Humpback whales. During the winter period Southern Right whales migrate into the coastal waters of the Western Cape to calve and nurse their young and therefore can often been seen up close along the coast.

A couple of days of classic safari in the malaria free Big 5 (buffalo, elephant, rhino, lion and leopard) Eastern Cape reserve of Amakhala can be added to the end of this trip.

This itinerary is suitable for both couples and families and offers a wide range of different activities to keep everybody interested and entertained.

Limpopo is a land of beautiful and contrasting landscapes with a rich natural and cultural heritage and abundance of wildlife. Combine this with exploring the more recent & vibrant history of Soweto by bike and you will have the most fascinating, Fair Trade South Africa experience.

Visit one of the Greater Kruger private game reserves, home to the Big Five, offering exceptional game viewing without the distraction of large tourist buses on the busy tarred routes within the Park itself. Venture deeper into Limpopo to the Soutpansberg region, a magical place steeped in Venda mythology and legend, and discover the area's community art & craft routes.

This itinerary is ideal for the discerning, adventurous traveller, who enjoys exploring distant lands and indigenous cultures. The route is simple to navigate and roads are fairly good and well signposted, but you will need to be willing to explore some of the sites independently, which requires a sense of adventure. Accommodation in the Kruger is rustic, but comfortable, exclusive and intimate. This safari is suitable for both couples and families with older children (preferably 12 years and older).

Lodges in Garden Route
Garden Route
Hornlee, Knysna - South Africa's homestays are based around the presence of strong, skilled women, who are able to drive developments within their communities and at the same time empower themselves. Be welcomed into colorful, vibrant and friendly communities and experience true Knysna hospitality. A Homestay offers you a truly holistic experience, revealing a different aspect to the usual scenery - the local culture and the people - whilst directly supporting the poorer communities and contributing to their livelihoods.

Magda Kock, owner of Bethany's Homestay, offers a very comfortable homestay with a beautiful garden. She will welcome you into her home with her warm hospitality and a sense of humour. Bethany's has three immaculate rooms with comfortable and warm beds. One room has an en-suite bathroom with shower cabin. The other two rooms share a bathroom with bath & overhead shower and a separate toilet. All comes with clean linen, towels, warm water, flush loos and electricity.

Magda offers innovative breakfasts, including fruit kebabs and wonderful options for vegetarians, and delicious home cooked dinners (by prior arrangement). She also offers a very special experience called 'Cookup with Kammamma', where you have the opportunity to cook with your hostess and learn more about the culinary traditions of the Garden Route area.
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