43 days in South Africa Itinerary

43 days in South Africa Itinerary

Created using Inspirock South Africa Trip Planner

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Route & dates

43 days in South Africa Itinerary

Start: Polokwane
Drive:  2​h 45​min
1
Hoedspruit
— 4 nights
Drive:  2​h 30​min
2
Nelspruit
— 5 nights
Fly:  3​h
3
Durban
— 2 nights
Fly:  4​h 15​min
4
Johannesburg
— 6 nights
Fly:  4​h 15​min
5
Cape Town
— 11 nights
Drive:  1​h 30​min
6
Hermanus
— 4 nights
Drive:  3​h
7
Plettenberg Bay
— 5 nights
Drive:  2​h 15​min
8
Oudtshoorn
— 5 nights
Drive + Fly:  6​h 30​min
End: Polokwane

4
nights
Hoedspruit

Hoedspruit ©
Hoedspruit offers proximity to Kruger National Park and features an airport, making it a popular jump-off point for a variety of tours and safaris.
Escape the urban bustle at Game drives at Phalaborwa Gate in Kruger National Park and Idube Game Reserve. Kids will enjoy Moholoholo Wildlife Rehab Centre and Kinyonga Reptile Center. Step out of Hoedspruit with an excursion to Thornybush Game Reserve in Kruger National Park--about 56 minutes away. There's much more to do: identify plant and animal life at Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre, view the masterpieces at Ukuthula Arts & Craft Shop, and look for gifts at Kumbaya Home Decor.

To find where to stay, photos, ratings, and more tourist information, use the Hoedspruit vacation trip planner.

Polokwane to Hoedspruit is an approximately 3-hour car ride. In December in Hoedspruit, expect temperatures between 33°C during the day and 20°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 8th (Fri) so you can drive to Nelspruit.

Things to do in Hoedspruit

Parks Wildlife Trails

Side Trip

Kruger National Park
Find places to stay Dec 4 — 8:
Highlights from your plan

5
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.
Bring the kids along to Elephant Whispers and Elephant Sanctuary. Shop till you drop at Ilanga Mall and Casterbridge Lifestyle Centre. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Nelspruit: Anvil Ale Brewery (in Dullstroom) and Shangana Cultural Village (in Hazyview). Spend the 9th (Sat) exploring nature at Kruger National Park. There's lots more to do: buy something for everyone on your list at Riverside Mall, indulge your taste buds at Shautany Chocolatiers, and look for gifts at Africa Joy.

To find more things to do, traveler tips, reviews, and tourist information, read Nelspruit sightseeing planner.

Getting from Hoedspruit to Nelspruit by car takes about 2.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of taxi and flight. Traveling from Hoedspruit in December, expect nights in Nelspruit to be about the same, around 20°C, while days are little chillier, around 30°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 13th (Wed) early enough to travel to Durban.

Things to do in Nelspruit

Parks Wildlife Shopping

Side Trips

Hazyview, White River, Anvil Ale Brewery
Find places to stay Dec 8 — 13:
Highlights from your plan
Kruger National Park ©
Kruger National Park
Elephant Whispers ©
Elephant Whispers
The Elephant Sanctuary ©
The Elephant Sanctuary

2
nights
Durban

Durban ©
Sunny weather and golden beaches await you on a vacation in Durban, a busy port city on the Indian Ocean known for its outdoorsy atmosphere.
Kick off your visit on the 13th (Wed): admire all the interesting features of Moses Mabhida Stadium and then kick back and relax at Umhlanga Main Beach. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: buy something for everyone on your list at Gateway Theatre of Shopping.

For reviews, traveler tips, where to stay, and tourist information, read Durban travel itinerary creator.

You can fly from Nelspruit to Durban in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a shuttle. Traveling from Nelspruit in December, plan for somewhat warmer nights in Durban, with lows around 25°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 15th (Fri) so you can travel to Johannesburg.

Things to do in Durban

Shopping Parks Beaches

Side Trip

Umhlanga Rocks
Find places to stay Dec 13 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
Gateway Theatre of Shopping ©
Gateway Theatre of Shopping
Umhlanga Main Beach ©
Umhlanga Main Beach
Moses Mabhida Stadium ©
Moses Mabhida Stadium

6
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.
Get some historical perspective at Union Buildings and South Western Townships. Step out of the city life by going to Wild Cave Adventures and Ukutula Lion Park. Explore Johannesburg's surroundings by going to The Bryanston Organic and Natural Market (in Bryanston), Sterkfontein Cave (in Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site) and Montecasino (in Sandton). There's much more to do: examine the collection at Apartheid Museum, browse the collection at Rosa Parks Library, look for gifts at Sandton City Shopping Centre, and find something for the whole family at Gold Reef City.

For where to stay, more things to do, photos, and tourist information, go to the Johannesburg sightseeing planner.

You can fly from Durban to Johannesburg in 4.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a bus. Traveling from Durban in December, you can expect nighttime temperatures to be a bit cooler in Johannesburg, with lows of 18°C. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 21st (Thu) to allow enough time to travel to Cape Town.

Things to do in Johannesburg

Casinos Fun & Games Shopping

Side Trips

Sandton, Wild Cave Adventures, Union Buildings, Emperors Palace, Ukutula Conservation Center
Find places to stay Dec 15 — 21:
Highlights from your plan
Apartheid Museum ©
Apartheid Museum
Wild Cave Adventures ©
Wild Cave Adventures
Ukutula Conservation Center ©
Ukutula Conservation Center

11
nights
Cape Town

Cape Town ©
Sweeping beaches, towering hilltops, and picturesque vineyards adorn the landscape of Cape Town, dominated by the imposing Table Mountain.
Take a break from the city and head to Boulders Beach and Cape of Good Hope. We've included these beaches for you: Clifton Beaches and Camp's Bay Beach. And it doesn't end there: browse the eclectic array of goods at Greenmarket Square, go for a stroll along the water at Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, admire all the interesting features of Robben Island, and identify plant and animal life at Cape of Good Hope.

To see ratings, other places to visit, reviews, and tourist information, read our Cape Town vacation planner.

Traveling by flight from Johannesburg to Cape Town takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In December, plan for daily highs up to 31°C, and evening lows to 19°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 1st (Mon) so you can drive to Hermanus.

Things to do in Cape Town

Parks Beaches Outdoors

Side Trip

First South African Perfume Museum
Find places to stay Dec 21 — Jan 1:
Highlights from your plan
Boulders Beach Penguin Colony ©
Boulders Beach Penguin Colony
Table Mountain National Park ©
Table Mountain National Park
Cape Point ©
Cape Point

4
nights
Hermanus

Hermanus ©
Renowned as a premier whale-watching destination, Hermanus grew from a quaint fishing village nestled on Walker Bay.
We've included these beaches for you: Grotto Beach and Voelklip Beach. Family-friendly places like Klein River Cheese and Stony Point Penguin Colony will thrill your kids. Explore Hermanus' surroundings by going to Franschhoek (Kim Donaldson Gallery & Huguenot Memorial Museum) and Marbrin Olive Growers (in Robertson). The adventure continues: look for gifts at Hemingways of Hermanus, hunt for treasures at Hermanus Country Market, and look for all kinds of wild species at Fernkloof Nature Reserve.

For ratings, where to stay, more things to do, and other tourist information, go to the Hermanus tour 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, daytime highs in Hermanus are 32°C, while nighttime lows are 20°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 5th (Fri) to allow time to travel to Plettenberg Bay.

Things to do in Hermanus

Parks Shopping Beaches

Side Trips

Franschhoek, Marbrin Olive Growers, Stony Point Penguin Colony, Klein River Cheese
Find places to stay Jan 1 — 5:
Highlights from your plan
Marbrin Olive Growers ©
Marbrin Olive Growers
Grotto Beach ©
Grotto Beach
Voelklip Beach ©
Voelklip Beach

5
nights
Plettenberg Bay

Plettenberg Bay ©
As one of South Africa's most popular beach destinations, the resort town of Plettenberg Bay comes to life in December and January, when the holiday homes fill up with domestic tourists and foreigner visitors.
Kids will enjoy Robberg Nature Reserve and Bollard Bay. Get in touch with nature at Birds of Eden and Tenikwa Wildlife Awareness Centre. Venture out of the city with trips to Mosaic Outdoor Market (in Sedgefield) and Knysna (Buffalo Bay, Holy Trinity Church, & more). There's lots more to do: kick back and relax at Plettenberg Beach, pick up some local products at Elephant Walk Farm Stall, look for all kinds of wild species at Monkeyland Primate Sanctuary, and stop by The Waterfront Knysna Quays.

To see other places to visit, where to stay, ratings, and more tourist information, read our Plettenberg Bay trip planner.

Do a combination of taxi and flight from Hermanus to Plettenberg Bay in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of taxi and bus. In January, plan for daily highs up to 29°C, and evening lows to 20°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 10th (Wed) to allow time to drive to Oudtshoorn.

Things to do in Plettenberg Bay

Parks Beaches Outdoors

Side Trip

Knysna
Find places to stay Jan 5 — 10:
Highlights from your plan
Robberg Nature Reserve ©
Robberg Nature Reserve
Birds of Eden ©
Birds of Eden
Knysna Heads ©
Knysna Heads

5
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.
You'll enjoy a bit of beach vacationing at Wilderness Beach and Santos beach. Escape the urban bustle at The Cango Caves and Cango Wildlife Ranch. Venture out of the city with trips to George (Dutch Reformed Mother Church, Cape Palette Art Gallery, & more), Boplaas (in Calitzdorp) and Mossel Bay (Bartolomeu Dias Museum Complex & Cape St Blaize Lighthouse). There's more to do: look for gifts at Cali Craft & Gems and experience rural life at Safari Ostrich Show Farm.

To find where to stay, other places to visit, reviews, and other tourist information, read our Oudtshoorn travel planner.

Traveling by car from Plettenberg Bay to Oudtshoorn takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 15th (Mon) to allow time to travel back home.

Things to do in Oudtshoorn

Parks Beaches Outdoors

Side Trips

George, Mossel Bay, Wilderness Beach, Boplaas
Find places to stay Jan 10 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
Cango Wildlife Ranch ©
Cango Wildlife Ranch
Cango Caves ©
Cango Caves
Wilderness Beach ©
Wilderness Beach

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