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5 Bucketlist Experiences in South Africa

To say that South Africa is a unique destination is still an understatement. Not only the landscape, but also the things you can do here are truly unique. There are endless things to do, but if you are looking for real bucket list experiences, then this blog post is the right place for you. We have listed our favorite bucketlist experiences that we have had in South Africa for you. You should not miss these activities during your trip to South Africa.

Overview

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Fly with Air Belgium

Did you know you can fly directly from Brussels to Johannesburg or Cape Town with Air Belgium? Not only did we enjoy the fact that we had a direct flight, we were also super satisfied with the service on board: super friendly staff, very tasty food and great comfort during the flight! We highly recommend Air Belgium if you fly from Brussels.

Outside of South Africa, they offer many other great destinations in Africa. So be sure to check out their website!

Meet the penguins at Boulders Beach

Meeting the penguins at Boulders Beach is truly a bucket list-worthy experience. South Africa is the only place in the world where you can get close to the African Penguins. There are currently between 2,000 and 3,000 African Penguins at Boulders beach, but sadly they are classed as an endangered species. 

To protect the penguins and their nesting sites, wooden boardwalks have been constructed, allowing you to see the penguins without disturbing them. A little further than Boulders Beach, you find Foxy Beach. At this beach you can go for a swim and relax. If you scramble over the big boulders here, you may find some penguins, which you can just walk between. But don’t get too close them as these adorable cuties may bite.

You can see the penguins throughout the year, but the best time to see the penguins is during Summer. Between September and October you will see fewer penguins on the beach as they spend a lot of time at sea in this period. If you come and see the penguins in January, you’ll be able to the juvenile birds molting on the beach. 

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Snorkeling with seals

Snorkeling with seals in Plettenberg bay is an experience you will not soon forget. As soon as you arrive by boat to the playful pod of seals, you can see their enthusiasm rising. Jump into the water with your snorkel and experience how playful these animals are. Don’t be surprised, because in all their enthusiasm the little ones will try to bite you and pull your fins. But we assure you that they will not harm you. They are just like little puppies, craving for attention and want you to play with them. 

It was one of the most fun and unique things we did in South Africa and we highly recommend it if you are not afraid of the sea and the enthusiasm of the seals.

Note

It can all be a bit much at first, but once you get used to the seals enthusiasm, it is a fantastic experience. The waterproof suit ensures that you float in the sea. However, this activity is not recommended for people who are not good swimmers or don't feel confident in the water.

Bunjee jump from Bloukransbridge

If bunjee jumping has always been on your bucket list, the Bloukrans bridge is the place to finally do it. With its 216m, it is the highest commercial bunjee jump in the world. The bridge is located in a beautiful environment, offering an incredible backdrop for your jump, making the experience even more unforgettable. It is the perfect place for a thrilling adventure in a beautiful surrounding. When you’re standing on the edge of the bridge, overlooking the Bloukrans river, you will feel your heartbeat rising while overlooking an incredible landscape. It is definitely an experience you must have had once in your life (at least, if you’re not afraid of heights).

Hike to the highest waterfall in the world

If you are into hiking and waterfalls, you should definitely add the hike to the Tugela Falls to your South Africa itinerary. The Tugela Falls is the highest waterfall in the world and it can be found in the rugged landscapes of the Drakensberg Mountains in South Africa.

Visiting the highest waterfall in the world sounds like the ‘bucketlist’ part of the adventure. But actually, this is the perfect example that the journey itself is just as important as the destination. Believe us if we tell you that the hike though the breathtaking Drakensberg mountain range is a must-do in itself. During the hike, you’re treated to panoramic views of the towering peaks that surround you. It is made even more exciting, because you have to climb two chain ladders along the way: one of 20 meters and one of 40 meters. It definitely adds up to the adventure.

While the hike to Tugela Falls can be challenging, the reward is an experience that you will never forget and you can tick off visiting the highest waterfall in the world of your bucketlist.

 

Spot the Big Five

We don’t have to tell you that you can’t travel to South Africa without spotting wildlife. You will be amazed at the variety of animals you will encounter during different safaris in South Africa. Wildlife spotting and going on safari are bucket list activities in themselves, but to make it complete, you should really challenge yourself and try to spot all animals of the Big Five: Elephants, lions, leopards, rhinos and buffalos.

But why are exactly these animals called the big five? Well, we heard different theories about that. The most common theory is that these animals were historically considered the most challenging and dangerous to hunt on foot as they would try to kill their attacker. Another theory we heard, is that it is mainly just commercial. Whatever the reason, they are just super interesting and fascinating animals to see in their natural habitat. They are the most iconic and majestic creatures in the continent’s wild landscapes. Some of the Big Five, like the leopard and lion, are known for their elusive nature, making spotting them in the wild a thrilling challenge. Their ability to blend into their surroundings add an extra excitement to the safari experience. That’s why spotting the Big Five should definitely be on your to do list in South Africa. 

 

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However, you still pay the same and therefore have no extra costs! So a win-win for everyone. This way, we can continue to add even more travel inspiration and tips to this blog for your next adventure. Thanks a lot!

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