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The Best Road Trips in South Africa

South Africa’s ever-changing landscapes, beautiful beaches, eccentric tiny villages, and abundance of wide-open spaces have solidified its position as one of the top road trip destinations in the world.

Everyone enjoys a good road trip, and it’s simple to understand why in a country as lovely as South Africa. So, here are suggestions for some of the best road trips.

The Garden Route, Western Cape

The Garden Route is unquestionably South Africa’s most well-known road trip route, and for a good reason. It consists of a 200-kilometer stretch of the N2 highway between Mossel Bay in the Western Cape and Storms River Mouth in the Eastern Cape’s western outskirts.

The Garden Route is well-known for its lush and diverse vegetation. It provides easy access to a variety of idyllic beaches, deep mountain forests, stunning lagoons and lakes, and a wide range of outdoor activities.

Camping, hiking, and mountain biking are popular activities in the picturesque Knysna Forest, home to a notoriously elusive population of forest elephants. 

Waterberg Meander, Limpopo

Despite being not far away from Johannesburg’s throbbing metropolitan center, the Waterberg Region does not appear on most South African vacation itineraries, which is part of its allure.

Soaring mountain peaks, golden savannah plains, antediluvian sandstone rock formations, lush riparian forests, and tumbling river valleys make up this location tucked away in Limpopo Province and known to locals as Africa’s Eden.

The Waterberg Meander is a 350-kilometer self-drive route that takes visitors directly into the heart of the Waterberg Biosphere, including the private Welgevonden Game Reserve and the magnificent Marakele National Park.

Route 62, Western Cape

The R62 route runs through the Cape Winelands’ numerous magnificent vineyards, past stunning mountain views, and into the famous Little Karoo, a wild and dusty region of open scrubland, livestock farms, and tiny rural communities.

Although Route 62 is less well-known and developed than its coastal cousin, the Garden Route, it has established a cult following among South Africans for its beauty, wild quirkiness, and lack of traffic.

The old spa town of Montagu, with its attractive colonial architecture and natural hot spring, is also worth a visit, while the wonderfully arty Barrydale has several fine roadside cafés, notably the Diesel & Crème Diner, which is noted for its milkshakes and nostalgic American memorabilia.

The Wild Coast, Eastern Cape

The ruggedly gorgeous and Wild Coast stretches 350 kilometers northeast from the coastal city of East London in the Eastern Cape to the Kwa-Zulu Natal border.

Known as the Transkei under apartheid, this region has a long and often brutal past and has given home to struggle heroes like Nelson Mandela and Steve Biko, whose lives may be traced at various local cultural sites.

The Wild Coast boasts some of the most beautiful and unspoiled beaches in South Africa, including backpacking hotspots like Coffee Bay and Port St Johns. You won’t find many better places to unwind or go about your business, whether you’re sourcing for the best trading app for beginners in South Africa, or looking at the best stocks to get you started.

The Panorama Route, Mpumalanga

The Panorama Route, which is centered around the jaw-dropping Blyde River Canyon and the ancient mining town of Graskop, is well worth the short detour from Mpumalanga’s major draw, Kruger National Park.

This route, which takes you through South Africa’s highest tar road, offers amazing views of the area’s mountains, canyons, and valleys, as the name implies. The sound of thunderous waterfalls breaks the silence, as eagles swoop overhead.

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