23 days in South Africa Itinerary

23 days in South Africa Itinerary

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Route & dates

23 days in South Africa Itinerary

Start: Edmonton
Fly:  29 h
1
Johannesburg
— 5 nights
Fly:  2 h 45 min
2
Nelspruit
— 2 nights
Fly:  6 h 30 min
3
Knysna
— 4 nights
Drive:  4 h 30 min
4
Hermanus
— 3 nights
Drive:  1 h 30 min
5
Cape Town
— 6 nights
Fly:  31 h
End: Edmonton

5
nights
Johannesburg

Johannesburg ©
Founded when gold was discovered in the area in the late 19th century, Johannesburg quickly grew into a bustling metropolis, South Africa's largest city and the region's economic hub.
Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Apartheid Museum and Mandela House. Venture out of the city with trips to Montecasino (in Sandton) and Wild Cave Adventures (in Krugersdorp). There's still lots to do: wander the streets of Maboneng Precinct, find something for the whole family at Gold Reef City, look for gifts at Smallville Comics, and learn about all things military at South African National Museum of Military History.

To see maps, photos, reviews, and tourist information, refer to the Johannesburg trip itinerary planner.

Edmonton, Canada to Johannesburg is an approximately 29-hour flight. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 9 hours traveling from Edmonton to Johannesburg. In December, Johannesburg is much hotter than Edmonton - with highs of 32°C and lows of 18°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 15th (Fri) early enough to travel to Nelspruit.

Things to do in Johannesburg

Fun & Games Casinos Museums

Side Trips

Sandton, Wild Cave Adventures, Smallville Comics
Find places to stay Dec 10 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
Montecasino ©
Montecasino
Apartheid Museum ©
Apartheid Museum
Mandela House ©
Mandela House

2
nights
Nelspruit

Nelspruit ©
Nestled on the banks of the Crocodile River, Nelspruit provides visitors with a convenient base point boasting two airports and an enviable location on the road between Johannesburg and the Mozambican border.
Kick off your visit on the 15th (Fri): take in nature's colorful creations at Lowveld National Botanical Garden and then browse the different shops at Ilanga Mall. On the 16th (Sat), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: explore the striking landscape of Kruger National Park.

To find reviews, photos, ratings, and more tourist information, use the Nelspruit vacation planner.

Getting from Johannesburg to Nelspruit by flight takes about 3 hours. Other options: drive; or take a bus. Expect a daytime high around 30°C in December, and nighttime lows around 20°C. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 17th (Sun) to allow enough time to travel to Knysna.

Things to do in Nelspruit

Parks Nature Shopping
Find places to stay Dec 15 — 17:
Highlights from your plan
Kruger National Park ©
Kruger National Park
Sudwala Caves ©
Sudwala Caves
i'langa Mall ©
i'langa Mall

4
nights
Knysna

Knysna ©
Enshrouded in lush indigenous forest and surrounding a scenic lagoon of the same name, the Garden Route town of Knysna has plenty to offer.
Get outdoors at Robberg Nature Reserve and Bollard Bay. You'll enjoy a bit of beach vacationing at Brenton on Sea and Buffalo Bay. Take a break from Knysna with a short trip to Birds of Eden in The Crags, about 46 minutes away. Next up on the itinerary: explore the striking landscape at Knysna Heads, look for all kinds of wild species at Knysna Elephant Park, and sample the tasty concoctions at Sedgefield Craft Brewery.

To see reviews, ratings, traveler tips, and other tourist information, read our Knysna travel itinerary planner.

You can do a combination of flight and bus from Nelspruit to Knysna in 6.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. December in Knysna sees daily highs of 27°C and lows of 19°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 21st (Thu) so you can travel to Hermanus.

Things to do in Knysna

Parks Beaches Outdoors

Side Trip

Plettenberg Bay
Find places to stay Dec 17 — 21:
Highlights from your plan
Robberg Nature Reserve ©
Robberg Nature Reserve
Birds of Eden ©
Birds of Eden
Knysna Heads ©
Knysna Heads

3
nights
Hermanus

Hermanus ©
Renowned as a premier whale-watching destination, Hermanus grew from a quaint fishing village nestled on Walker Bay.
Step out of the city life by going to Grotto Beach and Klein River Cheese. Give yourself a bit of retail therapy at Hemingways of Hermanus and Hermanus Country Market. Next up on the itinerary: stop by Funky Vibes, look for all kinds of wild species at Panthera Africa - Big Cat Sanctuary, and stroll through Voelklip Beach.

For photos, reviews, and tourist information, use the Hermanus trip planner.

Do a combination of bus, flight, and taxi from Knysna to Hermanus in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and taxi. In December, daily temperatures in Hermanus can reach 30°C, while at night they dip to 19°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 24th (Sun) to allow time to drive to Cape Town.

Things to do in Hermanus

Parks Beaches Outdoors

Side Trip

Stanford
Find places to stay Dec 21 — 24:
Highlights from your plan
Grotto Beach ©
Grotto Beach
Voelklip Beach ©
Voelklip Beach
Panthera Africa - Big Cat Sanctuary ©

6
nights
Cape Town

Cape Town ©
Sweeping beaches, towering hilltops, and picturesque vineyards adorn the landscape of Cape Town, dominated by the imposing Table Mountain.
Give yourself a bit of retail therapy at Greenmarket Square and Uwe Koetter. Get a sense of the local culture at Robben Island and Constantia Uitsig Wine Estate. Next up on the itinerary: take in the awesome beauty at Table Mountain National Park, look for gifts at Prins & Prins, get great views at Cape of Good Hope, and take in the waterfront activity at Victoria & Alfred Waterfront.

To find traveler tips, photos, more things to do, and more tourist information, read Cape Town itinerary builder.

You can drive from Hermanus to Cape Town in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and bus. In December, daily temperatures in Cape Town can reach 31°C, while at night they dip to 19°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 30th (Sat) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Cape Town

Parks Beaches Outdoors
Find places to stay Dec 24 — 30:
Highlights from your plan
Cape Point ©
Cape Point
Boulders Beach Penguin Colony ©
Boulders Beach Penguin Colony
Table Mountain National Park ©
Table Mountain National Park

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