Tourists call South Africa ‘Africa light’ because it’s tamer than the rest of the Africa. Backpackers absolutely adore South Africa as they are very welcoming and outgoing. Each and every traveller who loves nature and adventurous sports must go backpacking in South Africa at least once in their lives. You will fall in love with this beautiful place, which is a home to numerous animals and is known for its natural beauty.
9 Tips For Backpacking In South Africa
Backpacking in South Africa can be loads of fun. But you need to be prepared to make it worth the while. Here are some tips that backpackers can keep in mind as they travel through South Africa:
1. Rent a car
Public transport is a real issue in South Africa. The taxi drivers are not safe enough and they are also quiet rude and uncouth. You can choose the bus and most of the tourists do use the Baz Bus as they are the most frequent and convenient one. The buses maybe an option but these buses have their own limitations. A private vehicle will help you in the long run as you can travel according to your convenience.
2. Pack your trekking shoes
Port St Johns, Coffee Bay, Qolora and Morgan bay are other popular towns that are along the Wild Coast and one must visit these towns as they are great for hiking. Southern Drakensberg Mountains is an amazing place that you can visit for some great trekking experience. Wild coast has some wild beaches and tropical coral reefs which you must visit as you travel around the coast.
3. Plan your budget
Every traveller should plan a proper budget before they leave backpacking. If you don’t plan ahead of time then you might spend more than you intended to. If you are coming from a place which has strong currency, then you don’t have to worry much as hotels, food and drinks will be cheap for you. Some of the adventure sports and activities can be paid for using European or North American currency.
4. Go offbeat
Africa has many places worth visiting and not just the popular ones, you can explore around as you go through the dense forests or hike through the various natural trails. Africa has its own beauty which you can see here and some parts of South Africa reflect the authentic African culture and you should visit these places so you understand the African culture in a better way.
5. Behold the sight of Cape Town from Table Mountain
A beautiful sight of the Table Mountain can also be seen through this hotel. One thing that one must do here is to climb to the top of Table Mountain and behold the sight of Cape Town. The city never looked that beautiful as it does from the top.The Backpack is one place where you can stay; it is one of the oldest yet the best hotels in Cape Town.
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6. Don’t skip Garden Route
A well-known area in South Africa that is loved by most of the tourists, Garden Route is a place worth visiting in this country. This place may remind you of the California’s coastline. Some really attractive towns near garden route are Wilderness, Knysna, Nature’s Valley and Storm’s River. A great and popular place for surfing is Plettenberg Bay. All these towns are easily accessible from N2 highway.
7. Avoid walking in the streets at night
South Africa has a high level of crime rate. Take the precautions you’d take anywhere where you’re a stranger. During night time avoid walking through the streets. Take a taxi instead. Do your research about the area before going out and don’t focus solely on the local people’s tell tales. Sometimes the locals may confuse you. Most of the crimes take place in isolated unlit locations so avoid those areas.
Suggested Read: Table Mountain National Park: The Surreal Beauty Of South Africa
8. Get insured
Even if you think nothing can go wrong in your well planned Africa trip, don’t take any risks. A proper insurance will help you in case of emergencies. Make sure that your insurance covers the basic necessities and medical expenses and theft. Do not take any chances in a city you’re practically a stranger at. Get insured and insure your valuables as well.
9. Head to Durban for souvenirs
If you decide to stay in this city then a walking tour will be a better alternative as you get to know more about the multicultural history of this place. The street are here is really cool and you can explore the local markets. This place has a large Indian population as they were brought here by the British during the colonial times and there is also a museum dedicated to the great Mahatma Gandhi who was a well-known leader in Indian history.
You must consider backpacking in South Africa on your next solo trip to Africa. It will be an experience you’ll cherish for the longest time in your life. Don’t forget to go shopping for the cutest trekking outfits. Make sure to let us know how your trip goes!
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