10+ Best South Africa Tours & Safaris

South Africa truly is a world in one country. It’s home to some of the best private game reserves where Big 5 sightings are almost as regular as clockwork, phenomenal beaches and coastline, and award-winning wines from picture-perfect valleys. With bucketloads of natural beauty and wildlife experiences, South Africa offers some of the best tours and safaris for first-timers to Africa, honeymooners, families with children, and solo travellers.

We’ve visited plenty of these hotels, lodges and camps as part of our ‘we know because we go’ service ethos so enjoy a few of our ‘holiday snaps’ further down! And remember that these tours are ideas only – if you’re inspired, we can tailor-make a special version just for you.

Private Tours

Private South Africa Tours

 

1. Cape Winelands, Whale Coast and kwaZulu-Natal

Duration: 12 Days | Locations: 3

A magnificent leopard sculpture at Delaire Graff.

This unique itinerary combines one of South Africa’s best locations with two of its best-kept secrets. The world-renowned Cape Winelands need no introduction – as they are home to gorgeous vineyard-clad valleys, award-winning accommodation and some of the finest cuisine on the continent. Phinda Private Game Reserve sits in South Africa’s coastal kwaZulu-Natal province, known for sub-tropical beaches, beautiful mountain ranges, and fantastic cultural and historical sights. The phenomenal Morukuru Ocean House is situated in the unspoilt De Hoop Nature Reserve on the country’s Whale Coast, a truly exclusive beach experience with a difference.

Highlights:

  • The Homestead at Phinda, an award-winning safari villa
  • Big 5 sightings in Phinda Private Game Reserve
  • Delaire Graff, one of South Africa’s top wine estates
  • The secluded Morukuru Ocean House in De Hoop Nature Reserve
  • Housekeepers, private guides and chefs
  • Southern right whale migration from about August

Best for:

Families or groups

2. Cape Town, Winelands and Sabi Sands

Duration: 10 Days | Locations: 3

Your private game-drive vehicle at Singita Castleton.

Kick off your private holiday with two nights in South Africa’s gourmet capital, Franschhoek. Your villa at Le Colonial is located near the centre of this quaint town, giving you easy access to its wonderful restaurants, art galleries and flamboyant French flair. Cape Town is your next stop, with a 3-storey villa at the award-winning Ellerman House offering jaw-dropping views of the azure Atlantic Ocean. Conclude your private tour to South Africa with three nights at the superlative Singita Castleton, an exclusive-use safari villa perfectly positioned in one of Africa’s most definitive Big 5 reserves.

Highlights:

  • Le Colonial villa in Franschhoek, South Africa's gourmet capital
  • Fantastic art gallery at the award-winning Ellerman House
  • Tennis courts, swimming pools and cinemas
  • Game drives and walking safaris in Sabi Sands
  • Private chef, tracker and guide

Best for:

Families with children

Luxury Tours

Luxury South Africa Tours

 

3. Mother City, Wine Country and Kruger

Duration: 11 Days | Locations: 3

Africa House, a private villa at Royal Malewane.

This luxury South Africa tour starts in Cape Town’s trendy Silo District, an architectural marvel in the V&A Waterfront. Your striking hotel was built in an old elevator portion of an historic grain silo complex above the celebrated Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa. Then you’ll move to a gorgeous valley within the Cape Winelands for a couple of nights at a sophisticated guesthouse situated on a wine and olive estate. For the last few days on this tour of South Africa, you’ll be in the more than capable hands of Royal Malewane’s expert guides and trackers as you search for the Big 5 deep in the game-rich heart of the Kruger National Park.

Highlights:

  • Views of Table Mountain from The Silo
  • Direct access to the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa
  • Tailored service at La Residence Vineyard Suites
  • Africa House at Royal Malewane, set in the heart of the Kruger National Park
  • Game drives in a private 4x4

Best for:

Multi-generational families

4. Sabi Sands, Cape Town and the Masai Mara

Duration: 11 Days | Locations: 4

The Cape Grace has views of Table Mountain.

Experience three highly diverse and rewarding destinations on this African safari tour. Start in Kenya’s flagship Masai Mara National Reserve before flying to South Africa for a Big 5 safari in Kruger and a grand finale in Cape Town.

Highlights:

  • Game drives, bush walks and balloon rides in the Masai Mara
  • Personal service and culinary experiences at Dulini River Lodge
  • Big 5 game viewing in Sabi Sands
  • Impeccable service and fine dining at Cape Grace
  • Exploring Cape Town and the V&A Waterfront

Best for:

Adventurous and discerning travellers

Wine Tours

South Africa Wine Tours

 

5. Cape Town and Franschhoek

Duration: 7 Days | Locations: 2

Local art at O on Kloof Boutique Hotel.

Explore the beauty of the Mother City and its scenic wine valleys on this luxury tour of South Africa. Visit Cape Town’s sites and gorgeous beaches, catch the cable car up Table Mountain, then spend three nights in the quaint town of Franschhoek, harboured in a scenic valley within the famed Cape Winelands.

Highlights:

  • Ocean views from the award-winning O on Kloof Boutique Hotel
  • Easy access to Camps Bay and Clifton, Cape Town’s best beaches
  • World-class cuisine at Le Quartier Francais’s acclaimed restaurant, The Tasting Room
  • Franschhoek’s fine boutiques and art galleries
  • Private cinema at Le Quartier Français

Best for:

Couples

6. Cape Town, Winelands, Garden Route and Kwandwe

Duration: 10 Days | Locations: 4

The vineyards around Stellenbosch.

This South Africa wine tour kicks off in a trendy nook of Cape Town, before heading into the breath-taking Cape Winelands for a stay in the historic town of Franschhoek, South Africa’s fine-food capital. Indulge in gourmet delights and sample some of the finest wines in the world. Continue east along the Garden Route, arguably the most beautiful stretch of coastline in Africa, and spend a few days at a luxury guesthouse with spectacular views of the Knysna Lagoon and the iconic Knysna Heads. Culminate your tour of South Africa with a Big 5 safari at a sophisticated lodge located in a private game reserve in the malaria-free Eastern Cape.

Highlights:

  • Exploring Cape Town, Table Mountain and the V&A Waterfront
  • Fine dining and award-winning wine estates in Stellenbosch
  • Sunset boat cruises on the Knysna Lagoon
  • Kwandwe Great Fish River Lodge, a member of Relais & Chateaux
  • See the Big 5 in a malaria-free private game reserve

Best for:

Couples and honeymooners

Family Tours

Family South Africa Tours

 

7. Madikwe Game Reserve and Cape Town

Duration: 6 Days | Locations: 2

Kathryn and Shelley enjoying sundowners with Madikwe Safari Lodge.

This family South Africa tour starts in the fabulous Madikwe Game Reserve, a private wildlife sanctuary located in the malaria-free north of South Africa. Madikwe Safari Lodge is ideal for a family safari in South Africa, offering babysitting services and kids’ game drives. The Mother City will be your last stop on this tour of South Africa, staying in the heart of Cape Town just off its vibrant Kloof Street.

Highlights:

  • Stay in the heart of Madikwe, South Africa’s biggest malaria-free reserve
  • Separate wing at Madikwe Safari Lodge for families with children
  • Age-appropriate activities like kids’ game drives and guided bush walks
  • See the Big 5, predators and over 350 bird species
  • Table Mountain, the V&A Waterfront and Cape Town’s beaches

Best for:

Families with children

8. Cape Town, Winelands, Garden Route and Eastern Cape

Duration: 14 Days | Locations: 4

Stylish suites at Kwandwe Ecca Lodge.

This tour of South Africa is perfect for independent-minded and adventurous families. Designed as a self-drive adventure, it showcases South Africa's awe-inspiring southern coast from Cape Town to Port Elizabeth. Experience Cape Town’s beautiful attractions; stay at one of South Africa’s greatest culinary-orientated accommodations in a picturesque wine valley; drive along the superlative Garden Route and explore its secret beaches; and cap this family tour with a Big 5 safari in the malaria-free Kwandwe Private Game Reserve.

Highlights:

  • Mount Nelson Hotel’s child-minders and large garden
  • Award-winning cuisine of The Tasting Room at Le Quartier Francais
  • Babysitters, special menus and children’s beach activities at The Plettenberg
  • Kwandwe Ecca Lodge’s luxurious and spacious family suites
  • Big 5 and cheetah sightings in malaria-free Kwandwe Private Game Reserve

Best for:

Families with children

Solo Tours

Solo South Africa Tours

 

9. Kruger and Mozambique Private Island

Duration: 12 Days | Locations: 3

Regular Big 5 sightings at Singita Lebombo.

This sensational solo tour combines a safari in South Africa’s Kruger National Park with a pristine tropical island hideaway, the ideal bush-to-beach vacation. Begin your adventure tracking the Big 5 from a sophisticated, Afro-chic retreat in the foothills of the Lebombo Mountains. Then be whisked away to a beautiful private island concealed within Mozambique’s remote Quirimbas Archipelago.

Highlights:

  • Singita Lebombo Lodge, a sophisticated retreat overlooking an active waterhole
  • Game drives and guided nature walks in Kruger
  • Spa treatments at Lebombo Lodge
  • Azura @ Quilalea, an exclusive resort on a private tropical island
  • Snorkelling and diving in the remote Quirimbas Archipelago

Best for:

Seclusion seekers

10. Luxury Train Journey Across South Africa

Duration: 10 Days

Passing through the scenic Garden Route.

Step inside your elegant suite on Rovos Rail, the world’s most luxurious train, and journey across the alluring tapestry of South African landscapes. This is a great solo tour if you’re an avid golfer, as you’ll stop to play on some of the best courses in Africa like Leopard Creek, the Durban Country Club and Fancourt Country Club.

Highlights:

  • Travel on the most luxurious train in the world
  • Play on six of the best golf courses in Africa
  • Big 5 game drive in Kruger
  • A morning game drive in Mkhaya Game Reserve
  • Tour of an ostrich farm in the Karoo

Best for:

Golfers

Honeymoon Tours

Honeymoon South Africa Tours

 

11. Cape Town, Sabi Sands and Seychelles

Duration: 15 Days | Locations: 4

Solo serenity at Singita Boulders.

This is the ultimate honeymoon in Africa. Begin your tour in the continent’s most-awarded city, Cape Town, exploring its rich tapestry of beaches, leafy vineyards and iconic Table Mountain. Then catch a flight to the illustrious Sabi Sands Game Reserve, an untouched and private slice of wilderness alongside the Kruger National Park. After a thrilling Big 5 safari in South Africa, it’s time to escape to the boulder-strewn white sands of Intendance Bay on Mahé, the biggest of the Seychelles islands.

Highlights:

  • Service and fine dining at the award-winning Cape Grace
  • Sensational leopard sightings in Sabi Sands
  • Luxurious safari suites with private plunge pools
  • Singita’s renowned fine dining and exceptional wine cellar
  • Banyan Tree Seychelles’ luxury villas overlooking a private bay

Best for:

Couples and honeymooners

12. Sabi Sands, Kalahari and Cape Town

Duration: 15 Days | Locations: 4

Walking with giraffe at Tswalu in the Kalahari.

Discover two of South Africa’s best private game reserves: Sabi Sands beside the Kruger National Park and Tswalu on the edge of the Kalahari Desert. Sabi offers you some of the best Big 5 sightings in Africa, while Tswalu will shine a spotlight on the more unique and lesser-known African animals like meerkat, aardvark and even the ultra-rare pangolin. Conclude your honeymoon tour in South Africa’s magnificent Cape Town, drinking in the Mother City’s natural beauty and gourmet experiences.

Highlights:

  • Dulini River Lodge, one of the most romantic in South Africa
  • Fantastic Big 5 game viewing in Sabi Sands
  • The Motse at Tswalu, an exclusive and remote lodge on the edge of the Kalahari
  • Tswalu’s rare and unique wildlife like meerkat, aardvark and pangolin
  • Elegant luxury of The Cape Grace

Best for:

Couples and honeymooners