South Africa- Capetown & Safari

Safari travel is a bucket list destination for many and an awesome vacation whether you are a family or couple.  I recently traveled to South Africa to explore Capetown and my first  safari at Kruger National Park.

The long flight from JFK to Johannesburg on South African Airways was very comfortable and when we arrived our connection to Capetown was very smooth.  I had time for a breakfast on the layover quickly appreciates the exchange rate.  Two cappuccinos and breakfast was a total of $7 including tip.

After landing, we were greeted right away by our trusted guide, Craig, who would be with us for the next several days. He informed us we would be going straight to Table Mountain for fabulous views of Capetown since we had a clear weather day at hand. Since the trip took place in May, it was fall in Africa and temperatures were perfect in the 70’s and 80’s the entire trip.

We had lovely free time at table mountain and then we were off  to our hotel home for 2 nights, Victoria & Alfred right on the waterfront.  As we were welcomed to this chic hotel, we were stunned by the incredible yachts in the bay and prime location.

The day finished with a property tour and a dinner of fabulous South Africa cuisine and local wines. 


Penguins, Seals & Baboons

The next day we were off and running again.  After a lovely breakfast buffet with American, Mediterranean and African delights we headed out for a day driving to the Southern most point of Africa, Cape point.

First stop was Hout Bay for a quick boat trip out to see a colony of seals.

The boat trip was followed by a funicular ride to the top of Cape point. Here we encountered baboons. Our guide had warned us not to carry food in baboon areas and he was right about that. We saw a 2 year old with a cracker narrowly escape an attach as his father scooped him up quickly!

And finally was the highlight- the African Penguins, originally known as “Jack Ass” penguins because of their donkey sound.


It was a great day capped off with dinner at the waterfront.

Helicopter Tour & The Amy Foundation

There is stunning scenery in Capetown and what better way to see it than by a helicopter tour.  Flying above Capetown was a great way to enjoy the views or for the ultimate luxury can also be used as a transfer service on the way to a second hotel.

Next we were off to The Amy Foundation.   We spent the afternoon learning about their mission and enjoying time with the students while we made a traditional African meal together.

And at the end of the day we were welcomed to our hotel for our last two nights in Capetown, The Twelve Apostles Hotel.  What a special and luxurious hotel with incredible food.   
As a Virtuoso hotel, this is just one of many luxury properties where our clients receive complimentary benefits and amenities so it was great to check it out. I can highly recommend the “12A” as it’s called by locals.

The Winelands

South Africa is quite well known for its wine so a visit to the wine route was definitely in order while in Capetown.  We spent the day visiting hotels and wineries and  having a wonderful lunch in the a garden of  Babylonstoren winery and hotel.

There are towns and wineries throughout this area that could easily be enjoyed in a day trip from Capetown or by spending a few nights here.  There are many options including a chocolate and wine pairing tasting, safari vehicle lunch out on the property. and others that can be customized to be family friendly.


Safari Lodge Living

Our final stop of our trip was a 2 night stay at Lion Sands River Lodge which is set on a private game reserve on the border of Kruger National Park.  When we arrived, we were impressed by the luxury feel and scenic setting.

Our meals and beverages were included which is typical at the safari lodges as well as including the mini bar and twice daily game drives.  Think of it as “African All Inclusive”.

The only time I spend additional money was for a massage.  Having a massage by the river was a highlight as I saw elephants drinking from the river during my treatment.   Incredible!

Game drives were roughly 3 hours long and done early in the morning and late in the day so we would have the best opportunity to see both nocturnal and daytime animals.

Our 5:30AM wake up calls paid off and after 4 game drives we had seen elephants, giraffes, African buffalo, leopards, rhinos, hippos, zebras, hyenas, impala and much more.

And of course one of the favorite parts of any safari are the famous “sundowner” stops for cocktails in the bush while the sun sets.

Driving back to the game reserve after dark with countless stars over head confirmed that South Africa is a true bucket list destination for adults and families.

For information on African vacations, please contact Marcy Zyonse at  

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