Our trip to South Africa has been simply memorable.
The main reason for us to visit this time was shark safari to which we gladly devoted 80% of the trip’s time in two amazing location: False Bay and Mossel Bay.
The remaining 20% was instead spent venturing around the amazing Gondwana Game Reserve.
In between these main locations, since we never stop exploring, we had a number of amazing collateral experiences from the afternoon spent with African Penguins, to the visit to Cape Of Good Hope down to the monkey safari at Monkeyland.
You can review more in depth all the experiences we had in South Africa along these posts:
- False Bay – Simon’s Town Shark Cage Diving at Seal Island
- Simon’s Town – South African Penguin photo safari
- Mossel Bay – Shark Cage Diving at the Great White Shark nursery
- Mossel Bay – Monkeyland Conservation Sanctuary Monkey Safari
- Gondwana Game Reserve and Big 5 Safari
This is what you will find in this post:
- Random Odyssey itinerary – The map of the full itinerary we took
- Random Odyssey travel plan – the number of days we spent at each location and key recommendations plus the links to the posts where we covered the experiences extensively
- Random Odyssey tips on how to reach South Africa
- Random Odyssey tips on how to organize your trip
- Other few practical info – electric plug adapters, travelling with kids, etc.
Random Odyssey Itinerary
Please check the full map of the itinerary we took during our stay in South Africa. These are the major locations we visited. If you want to go more in depth for each location please refer to the specific blog posts.
Random Odyssey Travel Plan
This is roughly the plan of travel we followed. If you click on the link you can access the detailed blog posts
- Day 1 – landing in Cape Town
- Day 2 to 7 (morning) – stay at False Bay / Simon’s Town and go for Shark Cage Diving
- Day 2 to 7 (afternoon) – South African penguins photo safari + cape of good hope
- Day 8 to 11 (morning) – stay at Mossel Bay and go for Shark Cage Diving
- Day 8 to 11 (afternoon) – stay at Mossel Bay and go for Monkeyland monkey safari
- Day 12 to 15 (all day) – Gondwana Game Reserve for Big 5 Safari
- Day 16 – drive back to Cape Town and depart 😦
How to reach South Africa
There are clearly multiple ways of reaching the beautiful South Africa also depending on where you fly.
Normally, both for Cape Town (where we flew) and Johannesburg there are various flight combinations.
Direct flights exist from many European cities and hubs. They are very convenient and generally you can reach South Africa in 9/10 hours direct flight regardless of where you fly from.
Apart from their time convenience, direct flights can be incredibly expensive even if booked well in advance. They can cost up to 200/400% more than a flight with stop over. If you are not very familiar with math I am actually hinting that a direct flight can cost you between 2 to 4 times as much more as flying with stop over.
This is at least the situation we found for economy class flight when we booked the trip for the 4 of us.
Flying direct and price might not be the only attributes you want to check before booking. For example baggage weight allowance is also very important for us given the diving and photo equipment we normally bring along.
We flew from Rome via Dubai with Emirates. Do I need to add anything on top?
Emirates is always a nice guarantee of quality and very good service. Baggage allowance was 30kg each of us. That is really a lot and it gives a lot of easiness if mind. On board entertainment is top quality and we really had a smooth journey. Kids were also absolutely thrilled to flight the gigantic A380 from Rome to Dubai. The flight cost for the four of us was around 2.700€ and we did book almost 10 months before departure.
Organize Your Trip
It is clearly possible for you to self organize a similar trip to South Africa, especially if you read all the articles related to South Africa in this blog (which is one of the main reasons for this blog anyway 😀).
You will find contact details of all the key operators in the different locations, the hotels and also how to move from one place to the other.
It goes without saying that should you have any question maybe not covered in the articles we will also be very happy to assist you and you can reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
However, if you do not particularly like to get involved with travel prep and would want more a ready made solution, we can also absolutely recommend to check with SERGIO.
Sergio Riccardo periodically organizes this trip (almost always in the same format).
He is also an absolute shark lover and researcher and, should this not be enough, he is one of the most amazing nature underwater photographer in italy (on top of being an amazing, amicable and special person).
You can get in touch with Sergio at these contacts and can tell him you are a Random Odyssey reader.
- Sergio Riccardo Personal Facebook Page
- Photography Expedition Facebook Page – Sergio travel/photo business
By visiting these pages and getting in touch with him (he is also very active on Facebook Messenger) you can also check the entire offer by Sergio which is just outstanding all the year round which is much broader than South Africa.
Electric plugs in South Africa are not like Europe’s. You better check what adapter you need and can easily buy some on Amazon. This is how they look like. Just type “South Africa Plug Adapter”.
Traveling with Kids. Please be advised that depending on your nationality, traveling kids might require a unabridged birth certificate which basically certifies who are the kid’s parents. For Italian kids this is no longer a requirement if you have the name of the kids also reported on both parents’ passports. In any case, the custom police might ask for it anyway and we had to do some convincing by showing the law certifying this was not needed.
Obtaining the certificate with your local authorities is not difficult. You also need to remember the certificate is generally valid only for 6 months so you need to time the moment of request/issue with the dates of travel.
For adults, no specific passport requirements apart from a 3 months validity since the day of entry. Visa might be required depending on your nationality but South Africa has touristic visa agreements with almost all European Countries which make the touristic visa not needed.