Tourist Attractions of the Eastern Cape
Tourist Attractions of South Africa
South Africa is a vast and extremely fascinating country that packs a powerful tourist punch. Few countries can match it for variety and diversity in attractions, activities and cultural groups. From art and history to food and wine, wildlife and nature, nightlife, shopping and even places of worship – there is so much on offer to attract, entice and entertain.
The Western Cape with its mountains and oceans offers scenery that has inspired thousands of descriptions. It has great beaches, World Heritage sites, romantic winelands and museums that celebrate a rich cultural heritage. You can’t talk about a trip to Cape Town without discussing the fabulous cuisine and shopping options that draw tourists time and time again.
Gauteng’s brash exterior belies its depth, uncovered at numerous cultural and historical attractions. Places like Constitution Hill, the Apartheid Museum and Soweto feature alongside chi-chi restaurants, funky galleries, shopping malls and fascinating visits to the Cradle of Humankind, where all our stories began.
In Mpumalanga you’ll find a host of nature-related attractions, arts and crafts outlets, country towns, cultural villages and stupendous scenery along the well-known Panorama route. Of course one of the major attractions is the world-famous Kruger National Park.
Limpopo shares this wildlife sanctuary - the size of a small country - and has many of its own nature reserves. It also boasts the fascinating Mapungubwe, where once an ancient kingdom developed a field of influence that spread beyond the continent. Intriguing groups such as the Venda and the Balobedu still practise culturally-rich traditions in the far north of this region.
The North West is all about Sun City, and the Pilanesberg and Madikwe Game Reserves, but don’t forget the mampoer farms and the idiosyncrasies of the Marico, the cultural mélange at Lesedi on the shores of the Hartebeespoort Dam or the little town of Taung where the famous skull of the same name was discovered. From the Margaret Roberts Herbal Farm (De Wildt) to Sol Plaaitje’s house in Mafikeng, there’s much to explore.
Immense skies and enormous spaces characterise the Northern Cape, along with attractions such as the Big Hole in Kimberley, the Loeriesfontein Windmill Museum and the myths and legends as taught by the ancient San. The Augrabies Falls National Park, the Ais/Ais Richtersveld National Park and the Riemvasmaak community all offer interesting experiences and insights.
KwaZulu-Natal has its own brand of uniqueness when it comes to tourist attractions. Here you can visit a Hare Krishna temple in Durban, pay your respects at the Battlefields in the Midlands, come face to face with Zulu culture and celebrate some of the finest beaches along the Indian Ocean coastline. Sunny year-round, the province has great places to shop, eat, and discover.
The Eastern Cape is a place of rich heritage and struggle sites. Here historic monuments find their place alongside fun aquariums and beachside establishments. Malaria-free game sanctuaries and numerous nature reserves thrill adventure-seekers and nature-lovers.
Small towns and homegrown hospitality are the distinctive attributes of the Free State. Visit the Basotho Cultural Village on the way to the spectacular Golden Gate National Park, visit the Choet Visser Rugby Museum in Bloemfontein or the Fertility Caves (outside Clarens). Make your way to the fun galleries of Clarens, feast visually on the sandstone sights of Ficksburg and drink in the fascinating history of the provincial capital, Bloemfontein.
Wherever you go around the country, you’re bound to find a fun attraction, a moving museum, a great place to enjoy the local vibes. Enjoy surfing the Nightjar site for the best attractions on offer in each of the provinces.
Articles & Blogs
Camdeboo Storm11:55am 20 Dec
Camdeboo Storm, Graaff Reinet (oil) by Malcolm Dewey www.malcolmdeweyfineart.com
The Karoo can also look green after good rains. This scene is near Graaff-Reinet after a storm had passed.
You can see more of Malcolm’s work on his site. If you want to contribute some of your own work, drop us a mail here:
Village Pathways6:45am 18 Dec
South African Painting Journeys
As a young artist I was fascinated with the stories of Nieu Bethesda and the Owl House. Many years passed before I could visit this Karoo village. I was captivated by this oasis in the uncompromising Karoo. Many paintings followed, recording my impressions of Nieu Bethesda as well as the Camdeboo district. There is something about the big sky, peaceful silence, Karoo scrub and of course the people who live there, that compels me to paint these landscapes. Then, once complete, I have to make...
Timeless Karoo6:45am 16 Dec
Having travelled South Africa with a camera for many years, I thought I had become fairly proficient at expressing the incredible beauty that we are so fortunate to find on our soil, until I recently came across a group of local landscape artists hanging out on Google+ ( nightjar.travel/1e7MTXh ) and I was so blown away by the obvious passion in these artworks that I simply had to share them. I think many of us will feel an instant connection and intimacy with the scenes these artists depict.
I was lucky enough to get into contact with Malcolm Dewey, who agreed to share some of the...
Local is lekker1:18pm 2 May
How often do we speed past a small roadside business? Sometimes the locals you meet can be as memorable as the places you visit. I met this family early morning after overnighting in Middleburg. We’d just got going, but the quirky handmade windmills and broad smiles were a photo opportunity a begging. The children were helping to set up shop for the day, carefully arranging the different sized windmills. Now every time we look at our windmill we see the family behind it and it reminds us of our trip....