30 days in South Africa Itinerary

30 days in South Africa Itinerary

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Route & dates

30 days in South Africa Itinerary

Start: Recife
Fly:  29 h
1
Cape Town
— 7 nights
Drive:  1 h 30 min
2
Hermanus
— 5 nights
Drive:  2 h 15 min
3
Swellendam
— 5 nights
Drive:  3 h
4
Oudtshoorn
— 4 nights
Drive:  1 h 45 min
5
Knysna
— 5 nights
Drive:  4 h
6
Graaff-Reinet
— 1 night
Drive + Fly:  30 h
End: Recife

7
nights
Cape Town

Cape Town
Sweeping beaches, towering hilltops, and picturesque vineyards adorn the landscape of Cape Town, dominated by the imposing Table Mountain.
Satisfy your inner culture vulture at The Franschhoek Motor Museum and Boschendal Manor & Winery. Your itinerary includes some good beach time at Clifton Beaches and Kraalbaai Beach/Lagoon. Explore Cape Town's surroundings by going to Fairview Wine and Cheese (in Suider Paarl) and Darling Olives (in Darling). There's lots more to do: browse the eclectic array of goods at Old Biscuit Mill, take in nature's colorful creations at Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden, head off the coast to Robben Island, and look for gifts at Uwe Koetter.

To see traveler tips, reviews, maps, and more tourist information, you can read our Cape Town trip itinerary maker.

Recife, Brazil to Cape Town is an approximately 29-hour flight. Traveling from Recife to Cape Town, you'll lose 5 hours due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Recife in January, expect slightly colder with lows of 20°C in Cape Town. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 17th (Wed) so you can go by car to Hermanus.

Things to do in Cape Town

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trips

Franschhoek, Darling Olives, Kraalbaai Beach/Lagoon, Fairview Wine and Cheese, Chapman's Peak Drive
Find places to stay Jan 10 — 17:
Highlights from your plan
Bloubergstrand Beach
Bloubergstrand Beach
Table Mountain National Park ©
Table Mountain National Park
Franschhoek Motor Museum ©
Franschhoek Motor Museum

5
nights
Hermanus

Hermanus ©
Renowned as a premier whale-watching destination, Hermanus grew from a quaint fishing village nestled on Walker Bay.
Get a sense of the local culture at Cape Agulhas Lighthouse and Sumaridge Wine Estate. Step off the beaten path and head to Grotto Beach and Panthera Africa - Big Cat Sanctuary. Change things up with these side-trips from Hermanus: Horse Riding Grootbos Private Nature Reserve (in Grootbos Private Nature Reserve), African Penguin & Seabird Sanctuary (in Gansbaai) and Dolphin & Whale Watching (in Stanford). There's lots more to do: relax in the rural setting at Klein River Cheese, view the masterpieces at LEMBU gallery, discover the deep blue sea with a scuba or snorkeling tour, and stop by The Book Collector.

For reviews, maps, where to stay, and other tourist information, go to the Hermanus vacation trip planner.

You can drive from Cape Town to Hermanus in 1.5 hours. Another option is to do a combination of bus and taxi. In January, plan for daily highs up to 32°C, and evening lows to 20°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 22nd (Mon) early enough to travel to Swellendam.

Things to do in Hermanus

Wineries Outdoors Parks

Side Trips

Stanford, Stony Brook Vineyards, Cape Agulhas Lighthouse, African Penguin & Seabird Sanctuary
Find places to stay Jan 17 — 22:
Highlights from your plan
Grotto Beach ©
Grotto Beach
Cape Agulhas Lighthouse ©
Cape Agulhas Lighthouse
Panthera Africa - Big Cat Sanctuary ©
Panthera Africa - Big Cat Sanctuary

5
nights
Swellendam

Swellendam ©
Regarded as South Africa's third-oldest town, Swellendam contains over 50 provincial heritage sites and well-preserved examples of Cape Dutch architecture.
Let the collections at Kunstehuijs Fine Art Gallery and Hardys Memories of Africa African Art and Curios capture your imagination. Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Drostdy Museum and IBIS Gallery. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Swellendam: Newly Defined & African Pickers (in Heidelberg), De Hoop Nature Reserve (in Bredasdorp) and Montagu (Montagu Farmstall, St Mildred's Chapelry, & more). Spend the 25th (Thu) exploring nature at Bontebok National Park. It doesn't end there: look for gifts at Platform 62 and do a tasting at Marbrin Olive Growers.

To see ratings, traveler tips, more things to do, and tourist information, go to the Swellendam trip itinerary planner.

Traveling by car from Hermanus to Swellendam takes 2 hours. Traveling from Hermanus in January, expect a bit warmer with lows of 24°C in Swellendam. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 27th (Sat) early enough to travel to Oudtshoorn.

Things to do in Swellendam

Parks Shopping Nature

Side Trips

Montagu, Barrydale, Marbrin Olive Growers, Newly Defined & African Pickers, De Hoop Nature Reserve Whale Trail
Find places to stay Jan 22 — 27:
Highlights from your plan
De Hoop Nature Reserve Whale Trail ©
De Hoop Nature Reserve Whale Trail
Marbrin Olive Growers ©
Marbrin Olive Growers
Drostdy Museum ©
Drostdy Museum

4
nights
Oudtshoorn

Oudtshoorn ©
Nestled in the arid valley of Little Karoo, the town of Oudtshoorn remains the hub of everything ostrich-related, housing the world's largest population of the flightless birds.
For shopping fun, head to Peter Bayly Wines or Cali Craft & Gems. Visiting Safari Ostrich Show Farm and Meerkat Magic will get you outdoors. Explore Oudtshoorn's surroundings by going to Calitzdorp (Calitzdorp Cellar, Boplaas, & more). There's lots more to do: take a memorable drive along Swartberg Pass, relax in the rural setting at Highgate Ostrich Show Farm, look for gifts at Lugro Ostrich Leather Products, and explore the fascinating underground world of The Cango Caves.

To see reviews, photos, where to stay, and tourist information, go to the Oudtshoorn tour planner.

You can drive from Swellendam to Oudtshoorn in 2.5 hours. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 31st (Wed) so you can go by car to Knysna.

Things to do in Oudtshoorn

Parks Wildlife Shopping

Side Trip

Calitzdorp
Find places to stay Jan 27 — 31:
Highlights from your plan
De Krans Wines ©
De Krans Wines
Cango Caves ©
Cango Caves
Calitzdorp Cellar ©
Calitzdorp Cellar

5
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.
Shop till you drop at The Waterfront Knysna Quays and Elephant Walk Farm Stall. Take a break from the city and head to Noetzie and Wilderness Beach. Get out of town with these interesting Knysna side-trips: Plettenberg Beach (in Plettenberg Bay), Lawnwood Snake Sanctuary (in The Crags) and Wilderness National Park (in Wilderness). The adventure continues: kick back and relax at Bollard Bay, take in the exciting artwork at Jandreart Studio, pause for some serene contemplation at Holy Trinity Church, and explore the striking landscape at Knysna Heads.

For photos, other places to visit, more things to do, and more tourist information, refer to the Knysna holiday planner.

Getting from Oudtshoorn to Knysna by car takes about 2 hours. Other options: take a bus. In January, daily temperatures in Knysna can reach 29°C, while at night they dip to 20°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 5th (Mon) so you can travel to Graaff-Reinet.

Things to do in Knysna

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trips

Plettenberg Bay, Wilderness, Noetzie Beach
Find places to stay Jan 31 — Feb 5:
Highlights from your plan
Lawnwood Snake Sanctuary ©
Lawnwood Snake Sanctuary
Wilderness Beach ©
Wilderness Beach
Wilderness National Park ©
Wilderness National Park

1
night
Graaff-Reinet

Graaff-Reinet ©
Regarded as the fourth-oldest town in South Africa, Graaff-Reinet represents a well-preserved historic Dutch colonial settlement, set 750 (2,460 ft) above sea level on the banks of the Sundays River.
Kick off your visit on the 5th (Mon): identify plant and animal life at Valley of Desolation and then see the interesting displays at Old Residency. On the 6th (Tue), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at ANGLICAN ST JAMES CHURCH, pause for some serene contemplation at Dutch Reformed Church, Groot Kerk, then see the interesting displays at The Owl House, and finally browse the exhibits of First People Centre at The Bethesda Art Centre.

To find more things to do, reviews, photos, and tourist information, refer to the Graaff-Reinet vacation trip planner.

You can drive from Knysna to Graaff-Reinet in 4.5 hours. Cap off your sightseeing on the 6th (Tue) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Graaff-Reinet

Museums Parks Wildlife

Side Trip

Nieu-Bethesda
Find places to stay Feb 5 — 6:
Highlights from your plan
Valley of Desolation ©
Valley of Desolation
The Owl House ©
The Owl House

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