travel South Africa with young children

South Africa with Kids – Trip Itinerary and Travel Tips

In South Africa, Traveling with kids, Trip itineraries by JurgaThis post may contain affiliate links, which means that we may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. More info: Disclosure.

In case you doubt if you can travel to South Africa with kids, let me tell you that South Africa is a great choice for a family trip. It was the first destination that came to mind when we decided that our kids were old enough for a long-haul flight and a non-European trip.

I understand if you are hesitant and worried to to travel to South Africa with kids. Hence this post – to share our experience and to tell you to go for it. South Africa is a beautiful destination for a family holiday and I’m sure you and your kids will love it!

Don’t immediately think that we are irresponsible parents for taking our 2 year old twins and a 4 year old on a family trip to South Africa. It’s true that it’s not the safest country in the world (is yours?), but it’s also one of the most beautiful ones.

Ask anyone who’s traveled to South Africa and they will all tell you that they fell in love with the country. And so did we, years ago when we spent two weeks exploring the best of South Africa. If you know us a bit, you know that we practically never travel to the same place twice; we would make an exception for South Africa at any time!

In this post, I share our day-to-day itinerary for the South Africa trip with kids, tips for family-friendly activities, and accommodation advice. It turned out longer than expected, but it has all information you might need in order to prepare for your family trip to South Africa with kids. Read on!

Why Visit South Africa with Kids

Here are the main reasons why we think that South Africa is a great country for a family trip:

  • South Africa is one of the most beautiful and unique destinations in the whole world.
  • There is a lot to see and do in South Africa for and with kids.
  • You can see a lot without having to cover huge distances and sit in a car for hours every day.
  • South Africa is relatively cheap and also family-friendly.
  • South Africa is in the same time zone as Europe.
  • You don’t need extra vaccinations or malaria pills in the Southern part of the country.

Where to go & what to consider when visiting South Africa with kids

We chose Cape Town, Cape Peninsula, and The Garden Route for our 2-week family trip to South Africa.

When preparing a road trip itinerary to South Africa with kids, we adjusted it to our little travel companions. That meant skipping all the malaria areas and avoiding big distances to drive every day. We stayed at only three hotels over a 2-week period. But because we chose our locations well, we still visited so many amazing places! We had such a good time during this trip that we are planning to repeat the exact same trip again.

There is so much to see and do in the area around Cape Town or the Garden Route that you can stay at one place for a week or even two and not get bored for a second! You don’t have to travel long distances or change hotels every night in order to see a lot. So the Southern part of South Africa is an ideal destination for traveling families. 

Furthermore, Western Cape is malaria-free, yet there are plenty of possibilities to watch wildlife. On top of that, Cape Town is one of the most beautiful cities in the world with enough to do for young and old. Add the most magnificent landscapes, good food, some of the world’s best wines, nice weather, and you have a perfect destination for a family vacation.

READ ALSO: Best Places to Visit in South Africa

We chose November for our visit as it’s springtime in South Africa (and it’s wet and cold in Europe). We had days with 18°C (64°F) as well as 30°C (86°F) in the two week period, but most of the time the weather was very pleasant.

We flew from Europe to Cape Town and this was our South Africa trip itinerary with kids: 3 nights in Cape Town, 7 nights in Knysna (Garden Route), 4 nights in Cape Town. See the day-to-day itinerary below.

Traveling with three children under 5 makes it difficult to plan and foresee everything, so we kept our schedule completely flexible. We had a good idea of what we wanted to see and do on this trip, but we didn’t plan anything in advance. We rented a car and booked the hotels before we left and that was it.

We ended up doing a lot more than expected, but there were also some activities which we passed because we realized that it would be too difficult for young kids.

South Africa travel children at Cape Point

Cape Peninsula and Garden Route Family Trip Itinerary

Here is our day-to-day itinerary of what we actually did in South Africa with kids. If we could do this trip with three kids under 5, then it’s something any family can do! 

Actually, you can do much more than this if your children are older as they can cope with longer driving times, more strenuous hikes, stay up longer, etc.

TIP: Rent a car when visiting Cape Town with kids. It’s a big city and most landmarks and attractions are outside of the city center. Renting a car is much cheaper than going on organized tours and it gives you more flexibility, certainly when traveling with children. Here you can find the best deals for car rental.

South Africa family trip itinerary Cape Town and Garden Route
Map of Western Cape with places we visited marked in blue. Thanks to Google Maps

DAY 1: Cape Town – Table Mountain and Signal Hill

We arrived in Cape Town in the morning and drove to our hotel. As the time zone is practically the same in South Africa as it is in Europe and we had a good night’s sleep on the plane, we were all surprisingly awake. We let the children play in the garden of our hotel and then decided to go and do some sightseeing.

The weather was good and we could see that the Table Mountain Aerial Cableway was open, so we headed there.

TIP: Table Mountain is not always easy to visit and you can’t really plan this in advance. This is because the top of the mountain is often hidden in the clouds or the wind is too strong and the gondola doesn’t run in bad weather. So if you are in Cape Town for just a few days, you should keep an eye on the mountain and go there as soon as you get the chance.

You can hike to the top of Table Mountain (3-4hrs) or take a gondola as we did (hiking is not really an option for young kids). There are several viewpoints on top, as well as a restaurant and bathroom facilities. Some pathways on top of the mountain are accessible by a stroller, the rest we did on foot. Our boys loved running around, climbing on the rocks, and chasing rock badgers.

TIP: Buy Table Mountain gondola tickets online for better prices and faster access. Here is the link to the official Table Mountain website. Alternatively, you can also book this hop-on-hop-off bus deal that also includes Table Mountain gondola tickets.

After our visit to Table Mountain, we drove all the way up to the nearby Signal Hill where we enjoyed wonderful views of the city at sunset.

South Africa family trip with kids Cape Town
At the top of the Table Mountain

DAY 2: Simon’s Town Penguin Colony, Cape Peninsula and Cape of Good Hope, Chapman’s Peak Drive

We started our day with a visit to the Simon’s Town penguin colony at Boulders Beach.

A large group of penguins live here all year round and you can admire them from very close for just a small entrance fee. Seeing penguins in the wild while wearing t-shirts and shorts is not an experience you will quickly forget. This is a must-do in Cape Town and certainly with children!

TIP: Simon’s Town is a popular destination that’s also included in the most popular organized day tours to Cape Peninsula. So you may want to arrive here first thing in the morning.

Penguins at Boulders Beach in Simon's Town, Cape Peninsula, South Africa
Boulders Beach Penguin Colony in Simon’s Town

After this short visit, we headed towards the Cape of Good Hope.

On the way there, we stopped at several viewpoints and had our first picnic of this trip with the most beautiful view. Our kids love to picnic and picnics have become an unmissable part of all our road trips ever since.

At the end of the Cape Peninsula, you have two main points of interest – the Cape of Good Hope and the Cape Point, a short distance from each other.

We first went to the Cape of Good Hope where we took some pictures with the sign (a must!) and made a short walk up the hill. The views were just amazing and we also saw a couple of rock badgers. While the landscape doesn’t say much to the kids, wildlife is always a big success with them. They also loved watching the big waves hit the cliffs.

Family trip to South Africa with kids
Our 4-year old at the Cape of Good Hope sign

Our last stop today was the Cape Point. Standing here, you truly feel like you reached the end of the world.

You leave the car at the car park from where you can either walk up to the lighthouse or take the Flying Dutchman Funicular. We took the funicular up and walked down. All three children could do this walk without any problems. Great experience and wonderful views!

Cape Point at the Cape of Good Hope in South Africa
Cape Point

On the way back to Cape Town we took the scenic route – Chapman’s Peak Drive, for the most amazing views. It was even more spectacular because we were there at sunset.

Chapman's peak drive - one of the favourite places in South Africa
Chapman’s Peak Drive

DAY 3: Drakenstein Lion Park, Franschhoek and Stellenbosch wineries

We started our day with a visit to Drakenstein Lion Park near Cape Town. Please note that this is not a safari park and lions live in closed areas, a bit like at a large zoo.

There are more than 30 lions in the park, but we hardly saw any as they all seemed to be either sleeping or too far away from the side.

It was a hot day and the children got tired and bored with nothing very spectacular to see. Just when we were about to leave, one of the people working at the park came up to us and said she could take us closer to a lion. She just saw one near the area where (in principle) only overnight guests could come.

And indeed, a few minutes later we stood within a hand’s reach of an old lioness. We’ve never been this close to a lion so it was a very special experience, and not just for the children!

Close-up of a lioness in South Africa
Within a hand’s reach of a lion

After this short visit, we continued to South Africa’s most famous wine region – Franschhoek and Stellenbosch.

We really liked the little village of Franschhoek and the surroundings. We also stopped at an old winery in the Stellenbosch area and bought some wine to take with us. We never made it to the town of Stellenbosch itself, somehow the part we saw didn’t look very inviting so we drove by.

Mountain landscape at South Africa's wine region between Stellenbosch and Franschhoek
South Africa’s wine region between Stellenbosch and Franschhoek

DAY 4: Cape Town to Knysna and Bontebok National Park

This was one of the two long driving days in our itinerary. We had to cover more than 5 hours driving distance between Cape Town and Knysna. We took an entire day for this drive and stopped a couple of times as there is a lot to see on the way.

We contemplated going all the way to Cape Agulhas along the way as we did on our previous trip in South Africa. However, it was such a long detour that at the end we decided against it – we have been there before, and for the kids, the drive would be too long.

Instead, we stopped at Bontebok National Park where we had a picnic lunch, made a couple of short walks, and saw some bontebok antelopes. We also stopped at Sir Lowry’s Pass and a few other places just to break the long ride.

Bontebok National Park near Swellendam, South Africa
Bontebok National Park

DAY 5: Knysna

We spent most of the day at the playground of our hotel and went to the center of Knysna for dinner where kids could not resist to try some oysters. They were at that age when they ate everything – now they wouldn’t touch an oyster from afar.

Young child eating an oyster in Knysna, South Africa
Tasting an oyster in South Africa

DAY 6: Knysna Elephant Park and Tsitsikamma National Park

Knysna Elephant Park was the highlight of our trip to South Africa for the kids! Today they got to feed the elephants! How cool is that!

It turns out that our youngest could be a good elephant whisperer as one of the elephants went to lay on the ground allowing to pet him! The guides said it hardly ever happens!

Feeding elephants at Knysna Elephant park was one of the highlights of South Africa for the kids
Our 2-year-old feeding elephants at Knysna Elephant Park

We spent the rest of the day at Tsitsikamma National Park. We had a picnic at the beautiful coast amongst various wildflowers and even saw some whales in the distance.

Tsitsikamma NP coast on our family trip on Garden Route in South Africa
Picnic with a view – Tsitsikamma NP

Afterwards, we made our first long walk of the trip – a 2km hike to the mouth of the Storm River. It’s a pretty easy walk, but there are some stairs involved, which made it all even more fun for the kids.

The walk leads to several suspension bridges. Very impressive, but also dangerous for young children because of the way they are made. We were certainly not at ease here and made sure we didn’t let our boys’ hands loose for a second. Apart from that, an amazing experience, just watch your kids!

After the walk we bought some ice cream and kids played at the beach. We could have stayed much longer here as it was so beautiful. On the other hand, there were not many more walking trails in Tsitsikamma which were suitable for young children.

Storms River suspension bridge in Tsitsikamma National Park on the garden route
Storms River suspension bridges in Tsitsikamma National Park

DAY 7: Noetzie Beach and Knysna Heads

We had read about this secluded beach area famous for its castles along the coast and decided to pay a visit to the beautiful Noetzie Beach, just outside Knysna.

The road to the beach leads through a township and it felt really strange – the contrast between the villas, the castles, and the poverty next door was tremendous. You see that more in South Africa, but here it stroke us more than ever before.

There were some steep stairs to negotiate from the parking lot down to the Noetzie beach, but it was totally worth it. It was too cold to swim (I’m not even sure if you can swim here), but the coastline was just gorgeous and we spent a few hours walking along the coast.

Young boy walking on a coastal path of Noetzie Beach near Knysna
One of the castles of Noetzie Beach near Knysna

Afterward, we went for lunch at Knysna Heads and made a short walk there in the afternoon.

We considered visiting Featherhead Nature Reserve which we really liked on our previous trip, but decided that the beautiful walk there would be just a bit too difficult for our boys. But if you are traveling with older kids (or fewer kids), definitely check it out!

Knysna Heads Garden Route South Africa
Knysna Heads

DAY 8: Monkeyland and Birds of Eden, Plettenberg Bay and Brenton Beach

Another highlight of the trip for the children was a visit to Monkeyland Primate Sanctuary and the free flight bird sanctuary Birds of Eden.

The two places are just next to each other and they are both worth a visit. It’s not a zoo – the animals and the birds roam free in the park and you can get really close to an amazing variety of monkeys, birds, even turtles. Highly recommended for any age, not just families exploring Garden Route with kids!

At the end of the day, we made a short stop at the Brenton beach where we made a short walk and enjoyed a beautiful sunset.

South Africa travel with kids Garden route
Birds of Eden is the world’s largest free flight aviary and bird sanctuary
A monkey at the Monkeyland Primate Sanctuary on the Garden Route
You can get really close to the animals at the Monkeyland Primate Sanctuary

DAY 9: Plettenberg Bay Game Reserve

Today we took our kids on a safari ride in Plettenberg Bay Game Reserve and really enjoyed our time there. It was a very cold and rainy day and we were worried about sitting in an open jeep, but the kids handled it well and at the end of the drive we could all warm up at a giant fireplace and some warm drinks at the reception.

We saw quite a big variety of animals in this game reserve. Some close enough to keep young children interested. Despite of that, they all fell asleep after an hour on the bumpy ride and we had to wake them up when we finally got to the lions and rhinos.

TIP: Want to learn more about taking young kids on safari? Read this post: Safari With Kids: All Your Questions Answered.

Family safari trip - rhinos at Plettenberg Bay Game Reserve
Group of rhinos at Plettenberg Bay Game Reserve

DAY 10: Map of Africa Lookout, Wilderness and Knysna Downtown

A very relaxing day in our itinerary today. You need a couple of those ‘rest days’ when traveling with kids!

We drove to the Map of Africa lookout in Wilderness town and stayed there for hours watching groups of paragliders.

In the afternoon, we went for some tapas on Thesen Island in Knysna. There was a playground for the kids there as well and so at the end we stayed much longer than planned. A really nice place!

Paragliding above the beach of Wilderness, Garden Route
Paragliding in Wilderness, Garden Route

DAY 11: Knysna to Cape Town

Another long drive back to Cape Town. This time we limited the stops to one or two (to watch ostriches) and spent the quiet evening in the area of our hotel in Sea Point, in Cape Town.

Curious ostrich head close-up. South Africa
Curious ostrich

DAY 12: Victoria & Alfred Waterfront and The Two Oceans Aquarium, Cape Town

For the first time during this trip, we left our car at the hotel for a day.

The hotel shuttle dropped us off at The Victoria & Alfred Waterfront.

You can easily spend a day here and not get bored: plenty of shopping and dining options, a crafts market, kids playground, and of course the Two Oceans Aquarium.

There are also many day trips and short excursions available: scenic flights above Cape Peninsula, boat tours to Robben Island, etc.

Victoria and Alfred Waterfront Cape Town
Victoria & Alfred Waterfront with Table Mountain in the background

DAY 13: Hout Bay, Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, and Camps Bay

Hout Bay is a very scenic place, and so is the drive from Cape Town to Hout Bay. There are some restaurants and a crafts market at the harbour where you can take a boat to the seal island. It’s a very affordable short trip and it’s totally worth it.

Another pleasant surprise of this trip were the Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens. What a great place to spend a day! We saw a great variety of the most exotic plants and flowers, but also birds and even owls! There are three restaurants in the park and plenty of places to picnic and you will see many locals doing just that. Great way to escape the heat of the city.

TIP: Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens are on the hop-on hop-off bus route. So if you want to take it easy and not have to drive, it might be a good option for exploring the area.

Pincushion Proteas at Kirstenbosch botanical garden in Cape Town
Pincushion Proteas at Kirstenbosch botanical garden in Cape Town

On the way back to our hotel, we took a scenic drive along the coast, passing the Twelve Apostles and Camps Bay.

Twelve Apostles drive near Cape Town
Twelve Apostles

DAY 14: Whale Watching in Hermanus

Hermanus is known as one of the best places in the world to see whales.

We didn’t book a tour in advance because we were not sure if we could do it with such young kids (there was little info available online at that time). But there was a tour available and the kids could go on the boat too, so we decided to try.

TIP: Book your whale watching tour in Hermanus in advance if you want to be certain that you can do it. We were there in a low season and availability was very limited. In high season, it’s often fully booked! You can book a Hermanus whale watching tour here.

Unfortunately, I forgot to take motion sickness medicine and got really sick on board. You’re warned – the seas are rough here!

Despite that, it was one of the best whale watching tours we have ever been on! We saw plenty of whales, most of them very close by, and also some seals and dolphins. The kids didn’t show much interest in the whales which were jumping just next to the boat. I think they were also feeling a bit sick, so maybe this wasn’t such a good idea with young kids after all. I could hardly take any pictures of the whales too. Feeling sick and having to take care of three little kids on a boat is about as much as one can handle…

Group of dolphins in Hermanus South Africa
Group of dolphins in Hermanus

After the boat ride, we took our picnic lunch and walked along the coast of Hermanus. I still remember this as one of the most beautiful experiences of our trip.

Hermanus is a really nice place, the coastline is spectacular, and you can see whales and dolphins straight from the shore. Not as close as from the boat, but close enough. We didn’t want to leave! Next time we would definitely plan to stay a night or two in Hermanus.

TIP: Stay at least 1 night in Hermanus. You can find the best deals for Hermanus accommodation here.

South Africa travel with young children
Picnic at Hermanus coast – one of the best places to watch dolphins and whales from ashore

DAY 15: Cape Town Waterfront, going home, and the adventures of traveling with kids

We spent our last day in Cape Town with a short walk downtown and ended our trip at the Belgian restaurant at the waterfront. My husband had missed Belgian beer and the kids were more than happy with Belgian fries with mayo… And in the evening we would board the plane back home…

Our South African adventure almost got extended as one of our younger sons sprained his arm at the airport and they almost sent us to hospital. Paramedics were called (they were not allowed to do anything, btw, they couldn’t even give a painkiller!), our suitcases were unloaded from the plane and the captain was hesitant to let us board.

Luckily, we had some pain relief medicine with us and after a few minutes our son felt a bit better. So at the very last moment, we were allowed to board the plane. When we went to the hospital in Belgium the next morning, the doctor said that his arm was completely in order again.

Once you are ready to go home, the very last thing you expect is having to look for a hospital and a hotel in the middle of the night in a strange country, having to change your flights, etc. And that with all the baggage and three tired toddlers. I still get anxious when I think of it… So yes, traveling with kids is not all moonlight and roses. Needless to say, we had many more similar experiences over the years, luckily most of them at home.

More family-friendly activities in Cape Town and Garden Route with kids

We had such a great time in South Africa with kids and that’s why I wanted to share our experience with you! There are many more places to visit and family-friendly activities in the area which we didn’t get the chance to do during this trip.

Here are a few other ideas of what to see and do in Cape Town Peninsula and on the Garden Route with kids: visit an ostrich farm in Oudtshoorn, go on safari in Addo Elephant Park near Port Elizabeth, walk with cheetahs at Tenikwa Rehabilitation Centre, see old shipwrecks on Cape Peninsula, go hiking in Robberg Nature Reserve, do water sports, or simply spend a relaxing day on the beach… You can spend a week in this area, but you can easily fill a month if you want to.

If you haven’t been to South Africa yet, then the province of Western Cape is a good place to start. 

Where to stay in Cape Town with kids

The best place to stay for visiting the Cape Peninsula is of course the Cape Town itself. Here is the list of my hand-picked Cape Town accommodation for families.

Main criteria for all types of accommodation: good location, family rooms, swimming pool, free Wi-Fi, and parking available. review score of at least 8.

Luxury Cape Town hotels for families

Mid-range Cape Town accommodation for families

Best price-quality Cape Town accommodation for families

Best Cape Town apartments for big families (5, 6 people and more)

Family-friendly budget accommodation in Cape Town

Where to stay on the Garden Route with kids

Knysna area is by far the best place to stay on the Garden Route. Knysna is a nice lively town with lots of cafes and restaurants and it’s very well located for day trips and excursions on the Garden Route.

Main criteria: family rooms, swimming pool, free Wi-Fi, and parking available.

Luxury Knysna hotels for families

Mid-range Knysna accommodation for families

Budget Knysna accommodation for families

Knysna apartments for big families (5-6 people)


So, this is our guide and itinerary based on our trip to South Africa with young kids. Of course, you should adjust it for your family and interests, but it should give you a good idea of how child-friendly South Africa is and how much there is to see and do with kids.

Africa in general might not be the most obvious choice for a family trip, but if you travel well prepared and know what to expect you will have an experience of a lifetime!

If you are still doubting about which African destination to choose for a family trip, make sure to also check our post about traveling in Namibia with kids.

More travel inspiration for South Africa:

Do you have any questions about traveling in South Africa with kids? Don’t hesitate to leave a comment or ask a question in the comments below.

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South Africa with kids. Trip itinerary, tips and accommodation advice.


  1. Hello,

    Awesome trip. I am planning a trip post covid for my wife and I. My main concern is safety. I have read so many different places that it is VERY dangerous and keeps getting worse. I just wanted to get your take. My wife and I are have traveled a decent amount, so we are aware of being aware of your surroundings, do not walk at night, etc.

    What do you think, will it be safe post covid? When did you travel

    1. Author

      Hi Mark, I really honestly don’t know how the situation will develop. One thing I know is that South Africa has always had this reputation. I can also say that we absolutely loved every single trip there and would go back in a heartbeat.
      The first time we visited South Africa 14 years ago, we were told that it was ‘very dangerous’. It was the same when we visited with kids for the first time (‘are you guys crazy gong to South Africa with kids?!’), which is now 7-8 years ago; and also a few years after that when we were traveling in the region. We heard exactly the same thing when we were thinking of going there this summer. And no, it didn’t stop us from planning, but we all know how those plans ended …
      I met someone who lives in Cape Town recently and she also said that things were ‘tense’ at the moment. But isn’t this the case pretty much anywhere in the world?
      Sure, there are unsafe places in South Africa and yes, you may get really unlucky and get into trouble. But, once again, there are unsafe places in pretty much every country in the world and bad things happen to good people in Western Europe and the US every day too.
      I cannot really tell you how it will be or whether you should travel there. Only you can make this decision.
      As for us, we are definitely going back to South Africa now that the kids are older. But I wouldn’t dare to plan a trip just yet. Not because of safety concerns, but because of all the uncertainties with the virus. Which – for a big part – also depends on where you are from and how the situation is in your home country.
      Sorry if this is not really helpful. But as someone who has traveled a lot, as you say you did, I am sure you can understand that a question like this is impossible to answer.

      1. Thank you for the reply. We will not book a trip until there is a vaccine. As a fellow parent, I wanted to get your take on it. We still plan on going, as we can’t live in fear. We will Uber every where, not flash wealth, etc. I feel as long as we are very careful we will be fine and be able to enjoy the beautiful country.

        Thank you for your two cents.

        1. Author

          Hi Mark, I’m sure you’ll love South Africa and once you are there, you’ll see that it’s a beautiful place with friendly people!
          Just one thing – you can’t see South Africa by using Uber or a taxi. I mean, it can be ok in a city like Cape Town (if you don’t go too far). But if you want to see more, you’ll have to rent a car. There are also guided tours and organized group trips, but with kids, it’s so much easier to just rent a car and do your own thing as it gives you more flexibility. So do a bit more research, figure out what you really want to see, take a look at the map, and it will become more clear how to plan it all.
          All the best!

  2. Thank you for such a fantastic blog, you have helped me plan an incredible 2 week trip which I never thought we would ever do! I have booked our vacation for April next year for the four of us (9 yr old & 18 yr old) with such an age gap between our two children (I’ve just realised my 18 yr old won’t be so much of a child!) it’s never easy to please everyone but I think I might have come pretty close this time! This will be the furthest we have ever been, we have never been outside Europe as a family, We start in Cape Town staying in an apartment on the V&A Waterfront and hopefully will take the cable car up Table Mountain and perhaps the aquarium, the next day to have a private Cape Peninsula Tour. We then pick up our car and drive to Oudtshoorn where we will go to an Ostrich Farm and an early morning visit to watch the Meerkats. We then move along to Knysna where we will have a tour in the Featherbed Reserve. We move along again to Tsitsikamma where we will be visiting Monkeyland and Birds of Eden and then Plettenberg to walk ‘hand in trunk’ with the elephants! Our last stop is at Pumba private game reserve for three nights for our safari to finish our trip before flying back home from Port Elizabeth. I can’t quite believe that we are actually going to do this trip but have plenty of time to read blogs and daydream about it!
    I have booked all accommodation and activities already so all i need to think about is the bundle of tickets I have but my question to you is considering we will be a group of 3 adults and 1 child how much spending money we might need a day?
    (the game reserve is full board so we won’t need to worry about those days)
    Also are credit cards widely used or will we need to take more cash with us?

    1. Author

      Hi Melanie, it will be an amazing trip, no doubt. And South Africa is something the whole family will enjoy, so great choice!
      It’s really hard for me to say how much money you’ll need – it depends on what you do, where you eat, etc. Most hotels, restaurants, attractions, and shops do take credit cards. So I wouldn’t carry much cash around. Maybe get an equivalent of 500-700 USD from an ATM upon arrival and then after a few days you’ll get a better feeling how much cash you actually need and can decide to get more if necessary. Consider that more rural areas are the ones that likely won’t take cards, so keep your cash for those places and pay as much as you can by card when you are in bigger places like Cape Town and Knysna.
      Enjoy it! I’m constantly on the lookout for affordable flights to that part of the world – would love to go back again…

  3. Hello, Your blog is beautiful and very helpful.
    We will be traveling to SA in this coming October for two weeks with kids ages 8,11 and 14.. We are doing all the accommodation booking this week. I was wondering how much more adventurous it would be and would it make a better safari experience if we stay at an hotel inside the Plettenberg Game Reserve. I know you haven’t actually stayed there but perhaps you know from other’s experience? Otherwise we would just book another night in Knysna.
    Thank you in advance for your advice!

    1. Author

      Hi Limor, yes, indeed, we haven’t stayed there and I have no idea what kind of accommodation they have. If you are looking to stay at a more ‘safari’ type of place in that part of South Africa, I think I’d rather look at Addo Elephant NP. Take a look at this place, for example. That’s incomparable with Plettenberg… Something your whole family would remember for a long time I think…
      Enjoy your trip – I’m a bit jealous now. Can’t wait to go back to South Africa!

      1. Thank you Jurga for your prompt reply! I spent the last couple of days searching for a safari to sleep in anywhere between Cape Town and East London. The prices are just unbelievable! Especially for a family of 5. I looked up Addo as per your suggestion but it is also the same price range…Apparently safari has become (or always has been?) an ultra luxurious experience (if you wish to lodge inside the safari). Too bad 🙁
        I will keep looking though…and I will keep you posted if I find anything.
        Thank you once again!

        1. Author

          Safari is always expensive and I know what you mean with finding accommodation for 5 people – we also travel with 3 kids…
          There are many ways to keep the costs down, but that means staying outside the park and doing your own safari drives. It’s not the same as a night at a beautifully located lodge, of course, but you can easily do a safari in South Africa and keep the costs very affordable. It’s actually the cheapest country to do a budget safari. But budget and nice accommodations in a perfect location, unfortunately, don’t go together…
          Hope you’ll find something that ticks all the boxes for you!

  4. Your blog is a great resource from a planning perspective! I’m planning a trip to SA with 2 kids in January and wasn’t sure at all where to start. Now I’m thinking of doing a condensed version of your trip, starting in Cape Town and going to Knysna, but at some point we need to end up at Port Shepstone and it’s on the other side of the country. Do you know anything about train or bus travel in SA? Would you recommend it with kids? Also, do you have a preferred place you used for your car rental? I’d like to rent a car for the first bit, but then I don’t fancy driving 13 hours from Knysna to Port Shepstone. We’re on a tight timeline and a tight budget so trying to keep things economical while also getting the most out of our time there.

    1. Author

      Hi Carolyn, I think you could drive from Cape Town to Port Elizabeth and maybe fly from there to Durban and then drive to where you need to be. I think that flying/driving is the easiest way to get to places in South Africa, definitely with kids. We once flew from Durban to Port Elizabeth and it was a short and quite a cheap flight.
      I don’t have any experience with public transportation in South Africa, so I’m afraid I can’t help you there.
      As for rental cars, we use and recommend this website. It lets you compare several car rental providers and often has better prices than booking directly. Furthermore, you can get their 3rd part insurance that is much cheaper than the one you get at the counter with the car rental companies directly. But it’s always a search to find the best deal for your trip. One thing – book well in advance as it’s always much cheaper.
      Hope this helps.

  5. Hi, we are travelling the garden route from Cape Town to addo in April – we have been advised that the children need Hep A and Typhoid injections…we obviously want to keep them safe but don’t want them to have unnecessary injections. What are your thoughts on vaccinations?

    Thank you

    1. Author

      Hi, I’m not a doctor so I can’t give you any advice on this. Here is a website that we always consult for medical travel advice and according to them, it’s indeed better to have these vaccinations. We always try to protect ourselves and our kids in all possible ways, so we do have all the necessary shots ourselves.
      PS some of these shots are good for many years or even for life, so if you do it right now, you don’t have to worry about it later

  6. Hi Jurga

    You hit the nail on its head! South Africa is a beautiful country and there is so much to offer. I am a teacher and have been teaching for 22 years and my passion is showing our foreign students our beautiful country. I live in Paarl, the wine industry region of our country (about 40 minutes from Cape Town) and a person does not have to travel all the way to Johannesburg or even the Kruger National Park to experience the Big 5 – we have it ALL in the Western Cape. If you want to bring your family to South Africa and you want some advice, feel free to contact me. I organised a trip for Prince William School from England – the kids thoroughly enjoyed it!

    1. Author

      Thanks, Brett. Will keep this in mind. South Africa is always on my radar. If only those flights would be more affordable during school holidays…

  7. We are hoping to go in the beginning of May with our little ones. Have you ever been around that time? Wondering if you thought it was worth it with the views if it’s their winter? Great article will be referencing it often!

    1. Author

      Hi Alicia, I don’t think May is really winter 🙂 You can expect temperatures of around 16-20°C (60-68F).
      It’s never really winter there actually. And yes, we have been to South Africa in winter (July) and we absolutely loved it.
      The Garden Route had beautiful flowers even that time of the year and the weather was quite pleasant. We usually wore sweaters during the day and a jacket in the mornings and in the evening.
      In Cape Town itself we had really cold weather and even needed winter jackets and warm hats at the Cape of Good Hope. But once again – this was in July. Beginning of May will be much warmer and more pleasant. I’d think just like May here in Belgium would be, which is kind of a dream weather for us 🙂

  8. Hi, We are planning our 3 week family trip (kids 7 and 4), I was planning to do 5/6 nights in Plett but do you think Knysna is a better base for young children?
    My basic itinerary is 4 night V&A in cape town, garden route as far at Plettingburg then to Franschhoek for 3 nights before heading back to a Capetown beach resort for a few days. We can allow an overnight stay on our drive there and back we are going in April so I don’t think Hermanus will be worth a visit this trip but any other suggestions?

    1. Author

      Hi Kerry, it’s funny that I got two people asking about Plett pretty much at the same time. It has white sand beaches, so if that’s what you’re looking for, then it’s indeed probably better with young kids than Knysna.
      As for Hermanus, I LOVE the coastline there and would go back any time of the year, even if there aren’t many whales. We’ve also seen so many dolphins there, just from the coast.
      Another nice place I recently heard of is Gansbaai, just near Hermanus. I know a family with young kids that just spent quite a few days there and they were raving about it. So maybe worth looking into that?

  9. This is a fantastic blog. Really has helped me in deciding where to go etc. My only question is where do i start in terms of booking it and getting it to become a reality

    1. Author

      Hi Eloise, you mean how to book a trip to South Africa? The same as any other trip :). It’s really easy to explore South Africa on your own, so no need for a group tour if you’re ok driving by yourselves.

      There are basically three main components for a road trip like this: flights, rental car, and accommodations. When you have that set, you can start looking at day to day activities.

      I’d first start by looking when you want to go, then book the flights. Check services like Kiwi or Momondo for the best price deals.
      After that, rent a car (you can find the best deals here).
      Then decide how many nights you want to stay in each place and book hotels. I have quite some hotel suggestions in the article. Alternatively, just check directly on – we use this site for 99% of all our accommodation bookings when traveling.
      Hope this helps.

  10. Jurga, I’m planning a trip to SA for my 40th birthday with my husband and toddler in Jan.
    Even though it’s my second time to SA, I was at my wits end trying to figure out how to explore the region with a toddler in tow – this blog has really saved the day. Thanks so much for posting.

    I do have a question for you…it seems like the beaches are nicer in Plett and closer to Tsitsikamma, Monkey Sanctuary, Elephant park etc. I was wondering if it was best to stay in Plett rather than Knysna?

    1. Author

      Hi Yuen, glad you found this helpful.
      We stayed in Knysna as it’s our favourite place along the Garden Route. We love the town, the restaurants, the views, the surroundings… Somehow Plettenberg Bay never appealed to us, but it can be because we never took the time to properly explore it.
      I hear that it’s indeed a nice place for beach holiday, so if you like to spend some more time on a sandy beach, it’s probably a better choice for you.
      As for location, it’s not much different from Knysna and definitely central enough to visit many places without having to change your hotel every night. From what I see, Plett also has a big choice of accommodations in all price ranges, so you’ll definitely be able to find a nice place.
      Enjoy your trip!

  11. Hi, this itinerary sounds perfect for our family of 2 young boys under 5! I was wondering roughly how much it would cost (excluding flights and passports) for this 2 week itinerary in South Africa?

    1. Author

      Hi Brianna, it’s really hard for me to say. There are hotels/ accommodations that will cost you 100EUR/night, while others can be half or five times that price… So it all depends on your choices.
      Food is very cheap in South Africa, so your biggest cost is the flights, followed by rental car and accommodation. Activities – most aren’t overly expensive, so not the main item in the budget. You can check car rental prices here and accommodations here, then you’ll have a good idea of how much your trip will be.
      I think we spent around 250-280 EUR/day for our family of 5. This included accommodations, car rental, food, activities, fuel, etc.
      Hope this helps.

  12. Thanks so much for this blog. I’m starting to plan a trip to Capetown and possibly Durban with our 2 little boys 4 and 3, and this really does help and gives so much info. We have travelled extensively in Europe, were from Ireland, and had amazing times. Now it’s time to explore further afield. Xx

    1. Author

      Hi Sarah, glad this helps. You’ll love South Africa!
      If you are looking for ideas how to plan your trip, please check our complete South Africa itinerary for 2 weeks (something we did on another occasion). We also visited Durban shortly, but actually liked the nearby Drakensberg mountains much more. Also, if you decide to go there, it’s probably better to fly to Durban rather than drive – it will save you several days on the road.

  13. Hi would you know of any car rental company that will deliver the car to our hotel? We will be arriving late and as per your tip don’t drive at night rule we are planning a hotel pickup. We will be staying at Kuzuko Lodge and it’s a 2 hour drive from Port Elizabeth and would prefer a rental place close by or delivery on Site? Thanks

    1. Author

      Hi Samantha, I really don’t know if any car rental agency will deliver the car to a hotel 2hrs away from the airport… It seems unlikely, but you never know. You’d have to contact the car rental companies directly and ask them. Or ask at the hotel, maybe they’ll be able to help.
      Alternatively, you might have to ask your hotel to bring you back to the airport after your stay and then rent a car from there.
      Sorry, but I can’t really help more.

  14. We are planning a trip to Cape Town and following your itinerary. We have two children, ages 7 and 9. This will be our first international trip. We live in the US. Do you have any advice on safety concerns or cultural tips for us to know prior to going? We are planning to go in February 2019. Thanks

    1. Author

      Hi Mallory, what a great choice for your first international trip! But also an adventure for sure.
      South Africa does not have the best reputation when it comes to safety, but we never really felt unsafe there. It’s like anywhere else in the world – you have to be aware of your surroundings and use common sense. Don’t leave any expensive belongings visible in the car, don’t take any hitchhikers, don’t go to townships without a local guide. Always trust your intuition.
      One thing that counts for any African country – try to never drive in the dark. There are animals on the roads, but also people, and in general it’s not a good idea.
      As for cultural tips, I’d say be as open minded as you can. A smile and respect goes a long way. South Africans are in general very friendly people and it’s also a very multicultural society. But the difference between rich and poor is really big, so try and try to stay in the main tourist areas.
      As an American you’ll be glad to know that most people speak English, so it’s easy to get around.
      Hope this helps. Enjoy your trip!

  15. Thank you very much for this blog! It inspired us so much that we’re planning almost the same trip in january with our 2,5 and 5 year old. I’m still in doubt wheter to extend this trip with Addo Elephant Park or not. On the one hand I’m not looking forward to the extra distance, but on the other I’m not sure we’ll see enough wildlife (especially for the kids). What’s your opinion on that?
    Second question: what did you do for dinner? In the hotel, which is less flexible but easy, or somewhere on the road? Thanks in advance!

    1. Author

      Hi Eline, I really don’t know what to say about Addo Elephant NP. It’s still on our list. During this trip we decided not to go there for two reasons. First, as you say it, the distance. Second, we thought our kids were too young to truly appreciate it and taking the extra cost into consideration and the time that would take to get there, we found it not worth it at that time… So it’s really about your preferences and how much time you have. Just driving there and back will add two half days to your itinerary as a minimum, plus the time spent there, so keep it in mind. If you want the kids of that age to truly appreciate the animals, take them to Knysna Elephant Park, the monkeys, and the birds as we did. It’s not exactly wildlife, but so much closer and more enjoyable for kids of that age (and much cheaper too, not to mention much less driving).
      About dinner. It really depends. Sometimes we’d go out for dinner, sometimes cook, and once or twice we ordered pizza to be delivered (you know, pizza and kids go very well, at least in our case ;)). During this trip we were staying at a beautiful self-catering apartment overlooking Knysna; it’s not for rent anymore, but you can find quite some nice alternatives – check here for Knysna accommodation). Knysna town has plenty really nice restaurants, but also at the hotels you can have really good food at a relatively low price. In Cape Town it’s the same – plenty of options to eat out, have dinner at a hotel, or cook – whatever you find the easiest with kids. You really shouldn’t worry about the food in South Africa – it’s good, cheap, and there are plenty of facilities, especially in towns.

  16. This is a great post .What is the safety aspect like – especially if you are driving and without a guide etc?

    1. Author

      It’s really not a problem to explore these areas on your own, Nisha. We never had any issues at all. Just be vigilant, don’t drive at night in the rural areas, don’t leave valuables in the car, etc – similar kind of precautions you would take anywhere in the world really.

  17. Hi Jurga,

    thank you for the providing all this wonderful information . I’m a single mom of 6 yrs girl and 4 yrs boy , I’m planning 2 weeks trip to SA arriving in johnburg and departing from Cap. I would like to rent a car and make the trip from Johburg to Cap. grateful if can you recommend a trip Itinerary for me and kids,

    1. Author

      Hi Shaza, take a look at this South Africa itinerary – it’s just what you are looking for. If you prefer not to drive from Kruger to Durban and further down South, you could drive back to Johannesburg and fly to Cape Town or Port Elizabeth from there for the rest of your trip.

      1. Hi Jurga,
        Thank you for the prompt replay, Now I’m planning to fly directly to cape town and do your suggested Cape Peninsula and Garden Route Family Trip Itinerary. I’m sure the kids will love it and we are looking foreword for game drive at Knysna area.

        1. Author

          HI Shaza, I think it’s a wise decision to focus on that area with kids instead of trying to see the whole country in 2 weeks. If you want a real safari experience, you could also try and drive up to Ado Elephant park, but you should enquire if the kids of that age would even be allowed on the safari drives there… And Knysna area and the whole Garden Route is my favourite. You’ll love it there!

          1. Thank you Jurga, and wishing you and your family safe travels 🙂

  18. Hello. I have newly discovered your site and love it. We are Americans based in Switzerland for the next couple of years and are using the opportunity to travel around with our kids. This was the most helpful blog post I’ve found regarding South Africa. You recommend renting a car and driving to many of the locations. I just wondered how safe it was and how safe you felt traveling by car alone with your family. I’m torn between driving ourselves and taking tours, so we would be with groups of people. Safer in numbers, so to speak. Any insight you can provide on that front would be really helpful. Thank you.

    1. Author

      Hi Susan, I always recommend renting a car with kids, unless you are in Asia or in African countries where the roads are really not meant for tourists to travel on their own :). South Africa is perfect to explore individually, the roads are good and in general it’s perfectly safe. We never felt unsafe in any of the areas described in this post (Cape Peninsula and the Garden Route). Of course, don’t go driving into townships on your own and don’t stop for hitchhikers, but that you could say about New York too, no? 🙂 Just use common sense and precautions – don’t drive around in townships, don’t drive after dark outside the cities, don’t leave valuables visible in the car…
      If you go more North, especially around Johannesburg, it feels a bit unsafe to pass the townships around the city. There are signs everywhere warning the tourists not to stop next to the road, so I guess that just adds to that feeling of it being unsafe area. But that’s really the only place in South Africa where we were a bit uneasy driving around.
      Hope this helps.

  19. I’m in love with your blog! So much useful information!
    I just came from Namibia yesterday with a 3 years old girl an a 1 year old boy and your blog helped a lot! I was a very pleasant trip.
    Now I’m planning the next one, some where in Africa again, Seychelles? Garden Route? The kids will be 4 and 1 1/2 years old. I’m here, reading your post to decide, I’ll tell you later. 🙂

    Safe trips! Cheers!

    1. Author

      Thank you so much for taking your time to leave this comment, Glaucia. I really appreciate it! Glad you had such a nice trip in Namibia and hope you find some inspiration for your next trips. Let me know where it will be 😉

  20. Stunning photos! Having lived in Cape Town for 5 years and now back in my home town of Knysna with my two young children, I can agree that it’s the best place for families to visit. Great post with lots of info for visiting families.

    1. Author

      Thank you, Sarah. What a beautiful area you live in! I probably said this a thousand times by now – it’s my favourite place in the world! Enjoy it.

  21. Hi I am planning to travel with my, 10 month infant… Just wanted to now whether my kid will be allowed to take Safari at Garden route game lodge, helicopter ride with me and lastly entry into the cango wildlife which includes Ostrich farm, cheetah land and crocodile farm…. Will my kid be allowed to come with me for all these activities…. Please reply

    1. Author

      Hi Sujit, I already replied to your question as good as I could – see my reply from August 20 above.
      I honestly don’t know if a baby will be allowed on a helicopter, safari ride, or to see cheetahs. I think the best is to contact those companies that you have in mind and ask them. It’ possible that every activity organiser has different rules. Crocodile farm should be ok I think, and ostrich farm as well. But your best bet is to just call or email all those places directly.
      Good luck!

  22. Hey want to know how about traveling with, 10 month infant will he be allowed to enter safari, game drive helicopter ride Ostrich farm and all other activities

    1. Author

      Hi Sujit, sorry for a late reply. We are just back from vacation… I think there will be many things that you won’t be able to do with such a young child. I would think that a safari ride and a helicopter flight is not such a good idea. You can always do your own self drive safari in your own car, that is fine. Ostrich farm is no problem, it’s just walking around. For the rest – hiking and all other similar activities should be just fine if you carry the baby.
      Hope this helps.

  23. Dear Jurga,

    Many many thanks for your detailed and practical response in no time !!!!

    We love the wilderness and your suggestions are absolutely wonderful !

    Thanks once again and wish you the best for your future trips too !

    Keep well , cheers!

  24. Dear ,

    We are planning to travel to SA in August with 4 year old son and aged parents ( my parents and my husband’s) too . They can walk for 2-3 Kms at a stretch and we thought your itinerary is so well designed . I have some questions yet and I hope you can guide me .

    Is SA doable with parents ?

    All the 7 days that you suggested in knysna , did you stay at one single place?

    Is the drive from capetown to knysna safe unlike joburg?

    Are all day trips suggested by you from knysna easily doable from one base location ?

    Many thanks


    1. Author

      Hi Shilpa, if your son and parents/in-laws can walk 2-3km then yes, you can easily do this itinerary. And yes, we stayed in Knysna for the whole week and made day trips from there. They are definitely doable from Knysna, but some may require 1,5-2hrs driving one way, some less, but we thought it was still easier that way. If for whatever reason you don’t feel like driving far on a certain day, there are always plenty of things to see and do in the area.
      Knysna has many good accommodation options, also for big families, so you can certainly find something nice and it’s easier and more enjoyable if you just stay at the same location rather than booking a different hotel every night. Because distance/sightseeing wise it’s really not necessary.
      The drive from Cape Town to Knysna is fantastic. Really beautiful and we never felt unsafe. It’s nothing like driving around Johannesburg, where you see the signs warning you about all kinds of dangers. It’s a rather long drive though. An alternative would be to spend a night in Hermanus (it’s not really in the middle, but still saves you some driving time, and it’s one of our favourite places in SA). Another place that is nice to visit is Cape Agulhas (geographic southern tip of the African continent), but it’s quite out of the way so it will make your drive really long. Still doable in one day (we did it in July 2006), but if I were to do it again, I would stay a night there. It breaks the long drive in two and it’s a really special place to visit if you like remote places.
      Hope this helps. Enjoy the trip!

  25. I loved the post very much. We are actually am actually planning to visit cape town and garden route with my husband and two kids (18 months and 5 year old) and we already have booked the tickets. But we were having some doubts today mainly regarding safety and vaccination and I came across your post. It definitely encouraged me to stick with the plan. I have planned for 9 nights in cape town and 5 nights in either wilderness or Knysna. What do you think?

    1. Author

      Sounds like a good plan to me, Amal. You will love South Africa with kids, don’t worry, maybe just check for the right vaccinations, as you would do for any other destination. And if sightseeing becomes too much, you can easily have a quiet day in between since you’re staying at the same place for a couple of nights.
      If I were you, I would spend a bit more time on the Garden Route and less in Cape Town. Or you can add a night in Hermanus to break the long drive a bit, it will be a bit more relaxing that way… As for Wilderness or Knysna, I’d go with Knysna. Wilderness is nice, but there’s more to do in Knysna and also more restaurants and accommodation options. Everything is pretty close by, so you can easily make day trips from Knysna.
      Enjoy it!

      1. Thank you for your reply. Will let you know how my trip goes!

        1. Author

          Please do! Any extra tips are also welcome! Enjoy the trip.

  26. Do you have any resources or thoughts on travelling alone with a kid? I am going for work in September and would like to take my six year old and travel together afterwards. But I require care during the 3.5 conference day that would be stimulating (ie not babysitter in hotel room) and something my husband and I would feel safe about. Welcome thoughts.

    1. Author

      I’m afraid I can’t really help you with this, Kristin. Maybe check with the your work colleagues (or organisers of the conference) if they know a good day care for children that would take an extra child for a few days. Otherwise, check with your hotel. Some hotels have kids clubs, but I really don’t have any experience with this.

  27. Thank you for this very helpful post! We’re planning to go to South Africa with our 2-year-old in April, and I found this very helpful. How did you handle naps for your toddlers? Did they mostly nap in the car?

    I’m specifically wondering how best to handle our touring of the southern peninsula. We have a hotel booked near the Waterfront area, and I’m debating spending a night or two near Boulder’s Beach or Falk Bay to make that part of our sightseeing a little more relaxed. But I also dread moving our things and getting our toddler accustomed to a new setting, etc. I appreciate any thoughts!

    1. Author

      Hi Melissa, yes the boys napped in the car. We tried to plan sightseeing in such a way that we’d do something in the morning, then drive to the next place (hoping that the kids would sleep a bit), and then do more sightseeing in the afternoon. Sometimes it worked, sometimes not, usually the kids were so tired by the end of the day that they fell asleep in the car while driving back to the hotel.
      The Cape Peninsula is indeed a bit far from the city centre, but we stayed in Cape Town and didn’t switch hotels. With three young kids it was already complicated as it was. 🙂 But it’s a very long day if sightseeing on Cape Peninsula and you can’t do everything you want to if you have to head back to the hotel in Cape Town. When we go back, I would consider splitting up our time in Cape Town in two hotels – one in Cape Town itself and one further South, OR stay at just one place somewhere in between. You need a car everywhere anyway, so staying in the area close to Hout Bay, Constantia wine region, or Simon’s Town might be a good alternative. I don’t know what kind of traveling you’re used to, we do so much road tripping now that changing hotels is very common to us. If you don’t like switching hotels, you don’t necessarily have to do that and can easily visit the whole Cape Town region from just one hotel. Hope this helps.

      1. Thanks so much! I’ve decided to split our time between two places–one more central to Cape Town and the other in Kalk Bay (not Falk Bay–oops). We’re also going to spend a few days in the Winelands. I think splitting it up will be the right move for us. The key sights do seem pretty spread out.

  28. Wow! Thank you so much. What an amazing adventure! We are planning a trip with our 2 year old son. I had something similar planned, but it was so lovely to see what you accomplished with your three boys. They are absolutely adorable by the way.

    1. Author

      Thanks a lot for the feedback and your kind yours, Chelsea. I’m sure that you’ll have a wonderful time in South Africa, it’s one of our favourite places on the planet.

  29. Hi Jurga,

    thanks for all your tips and the wonderful itinerary above, we have just returned from an amazing trip to SA. In the end we just took his buggy and he walked for most of the time, apart from a few occasions he had to be picked up this worked fine for us!

    Also just received your email on 2017 destinations and we live in London so let me know if you need any help with planning this trip 🙂 thanks Rupreet

    1. Author

      Wow, thanks for coming back to the blog to tell me how it went, Rupreet. Glad you enjoyed South Africa and that it all worked out well with the little one. 😉 I’m so jealous – would love to go back!
      As for London, yes, please, any tips for really nice things to do with kids are very welcome! We’ve been there several times years ago, but I’m sure it will be very different with the kids now. Feel free to send me an email with any suggestions. Appreciate it!

    1. Author

      Hi Rupreet, I would say it depends on what you are planning to do, mainly if you’re planning to do hiking or not. For us a toddler carrier was not an option with 2-year old twins and a 4 year old. We took a travel stroller for the twins and used it pretty much everywhere where we had to cover bigger distances. In Cape Town city centre it was very handy, but for the rest we only used it occasionally. We also took a bicycle lock for when we started a walk with a stroller and had to continue on foot, and just left the stroller along the way.
      Our boys walked most of the time. At Cape of Good Hope we took the funicular up and walked down. In the monkey- and birds park the kids walked. Noetzie Beach, Hermanus coastline, Knysna Heads – we did it all on foot. The longest walk we did was at the Suspension Bridge in Tsitsikamma and we had to carry them a little bit towards the end. On most walks you really cannot do it with a stroller, so a baby carrier is definitely a good option if you like hiking.
      If your toddler is not used to walking a lot and you plan to do this exact same itinerary, then you’re probably better of with a baby carrier than a stroller. On the other hand, at the airport and in Cape Town a stroller is extremely handy and it keeps your hands free.
      Hope this helps a bit. At the end, it’s still your decision. You know your family best.

  30. Hi Jurga

    We are planning a trip with out two year old – would you recommmend taking s baby/toddler carrier over a pushchair for most of the places in the iteniary above?


  31. South Africa is an amazing country. I spent a long time living there and often when I suggest it as a fantastic destination people say it’s not for them. If they go though their attitude changes and they inevitably fall in love with everything it has to offer – which is so much. This is a great post – I have been travelling to South Africa with my daughter many times since she was a young child. She loves it and says Cape Town is her favourite city in the world (and she has seen a lot of the world!). I would say to anyone thinking of going – GO! You will not regret it and Jurga has given an excellent itinerary to follow too!

    1. Author

      People are often afraid of the unknown and Africa in general is still a big no when it comes to travel destinations and certainly when traveling with kids. I’d have to agree with your daughter, Tracy. Cape Town is my favourite city in the entire world too. So much that we think of moving there one day. Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment and to encourage people to visit South Africa!

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