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South African Road Trips
For a person visiting South Africa, or for local, there is nothing quite like taking a road trip through the varied landscapes and provinces of this beautiful country. The country is larger then England, France and Germany and holds a selection of different sceneries, ranging from the dry, desert Karoo, to the rich dense forest of Knysna.

Taking a road trip with friends or family has wonderful opportunities to get to the know places, meet people and be spontaneous. There are varieties of companies in South Africa that offer different Self-Drive trips and tours, all individual with possibilities of exploration.

There are several companies that offer self-drive or road trips within South Africa. You could use your own car as the mode of transport, or alternatively hire a car for rental. There are various routes available and each operator has different scenic tours to explore. One of the more general ones would be such as a beautiful road trip driving from Cape Town, through to Port Elizabeth.

This trip has a holiday feel with plenty of time to explore the beaches of Cape Town, wine estates on the Garden Route as well as a nature reserve, a safari and plenty more. With careful planning, you could include seeing seals, penguins and even cheetahs at the Spier Estate, just outside of Cape Town. If you traveled up to Plettenburg Bay, there is opportunity to see primates at Monkey World. The actual driving is easy going with plenty to see.

This particular type of road trip gives a wonderful overview of what South Africa has to offer. It has just enough activities to keep you busy, but allows time for relaxation as well. If you are, however, looking for more of the wilder side of South Africa, there are tour operator's that offer self-drives to the Kruger National Park.

There are tour companies that offer a wonderful road trips from Johannesburg, through to Kruger National Park. The Kruger National Park is larger then Israel, and holds the complete Big 5 animals (Elephant, Leopard, Lion, Buffalo and Rhinoceros) as well as wide variety of antelope, 900 species of bird life, small predators and other animals. There are two game drives though out the day, the one in the early morning and another late at night. Both hold a variety of animals and are guided by both a ranger and a tracker.

But before you even arrive at the Kruger, the self-drive will let you explore Mpumalanga, traveling from Johannesburg to the Kruger National Park. Beautiful scenery and canyons surround you, the most famous being Blyde River Canyon that the area is known for. Just a bit further on is another canyon that can be viewed from a spot called "Gods Window".

From here the whole world seems to open its doors to you, with the gorgeous greenery and lushness provided by the forest and nature. The drive from each destination is smooth, with only a few hours in-between. Each destination has it's own activities and beauty to provide the ideal road trip. Once you have toured to your hearts content, you can take a leisure dive back to Johannesburg, and drop your car off at the Airport car rental. In contrast to this lush green tour, is the more southern part of South Africa, at the Karoo. There are tour operators that explore this region, which offer Ostrich Derby self drive trips.

This adventure starts in Cape Town and takes a relaxation ride up to Oudtshoorn. There are plenty of stops and sights on the way, but the main attraction of this trip is the visit to the Ostrich and Crocodile farm. There are often races between the locals on the ostriches and a variety of craft shops selling beautiful ostrich feathers in a variety of colours, as well as eggs, local pottery and a mixture of different things. There are also camel rides available and watching the rangers feed the crocodiles is a site to behold.

The trip even gives the opportunity to fly in a hot air balloon and float over the Karoo. Stops on the way to Oudtshoorn include the Drakensburg Mountains and driving through Stellenbosch, the home of many of South Africa's greatest wines. The trip ends off in Hermanus, which is renowned for Whale watching.

If you are coming to the Cape to try the wine routes and have a bit of adventure in between, then you should look at self-drive trips that include the Garden Route. Circular road journeys, which go completely around the Western Cape, are perfect for wine tasting opportunities. This type of road journey is fantastic as you get a wonderful opportunity to see all the sights, sounds, smells, and tastes that Cape Town and the surrounding area have to offer, in two weeks. The trip shows you all the wonderful landscape, sites and landmarks that are on offer.

For the first few days, you can relax into the mood of Cape Town, with a complete travel manual for trips and actives in the City. The trip then ventures off into Hermanus and a few days in Kysna. They are plenty of hikes, boat trips, both at sea, in the lagoons and on the rivers. You then travel to the Wilderness to see the dolphins, then drive through to Oudtshoorn and visit the Cango Caves. At the end, they, takes you through a leisure drive through Stellenbosh to visit and taste all the wines available.

There are plenty of routes and destinations for every member of the family within the borders of South Africa and plenty of memories to be made. With a bit of guidance and help from the people in the industry, travelling by your own car or getting a economy car rental, you can discover first hand the adventures that are possible, which no other type of trip comes anywhere close to the experience.
About the Author
Celeste wrote this article for Thrify Car Rentals, who have a fleet of affordable cars to rent.
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