Travel Planning
South Africa
Travel Planning
South Africa

South Africa at a Glance

South Africa is a country of diverse landscapes and diverse people. Whether you like the seacoast, mountains, grasslands or cities there will be a place for you to enjoy. 

The South African coast has craggy beaches with impressive bluffs in some spots and sandy beaches in others. Watch the water and the birds from a vantage point on the buff or jump right in with your surf board and catch some tricky waves. Beach play can be really fun. 

View wildlife all over South Africa. Hippos submerge themselves in the Limpopo River and leave their blinking eyes showing. Gazelles race across the savanna and crocodiles snap at passing prey. In the mountains, come upon the breathtaking sight of a field full of blooming wildflowers. Hike high up and bring a picnic to enjoy.

In South Africa's cities, meet its diverse people. Sample food with tribal, European, Malaysian and Indian roots. Go on a wine tour in the wine producing region, or sample home brew. It's easy to have a good time with the friendly, welcoming people you'll run into.   

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Popular Places
  • Cape Town Cape Town
  • Johannesburg Johannesburg
Getting There
Major Airports
  • Major Airport Cape Town International Airport
  • Major Airport Lanseria International Airport
  • Major Airport O.R. Tambo International Airport

Passport / Visa Requirements

Travelers to South African from Japan, American, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the European Union will not need visas to enter the country. All travelers need a valid passport from their country of origin. The passport must have at least one page available for stamping and 30 days of remaining validity at the end of your stay in South Africa. South African embassies or consulates help travelers apply for visas if they are required. American citizens can also use the U.S State Department website as a resource. 

Need to Know

Severe Weather: Come prepared with a jacket if you spend time in the highland areas. Nights are drastically cooler than the days. 

Safety Concerns ATM scams are a big problem in South Africa. Be careful about the ATMs you use and avoid drawing money out at night. Thieves are frequently well-dressed men who jam the machines and wait nearby. Daylight muggings are also a problem in Johannesburg and other areas. 

Health Concerns Speak with your doctor at least two months before your trip to discuss health concerns and to plan any vaccinations. 

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Language: English, Xhosa, Sotho, Swati, Zulu, Afrikaans
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