Best things to do and places to visit in South Africa

My 10 Favourite South Africa Photos: Cape Peninsula and the Garden Route

In Africa, South Africa, Travel inspiration 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.

South Africa is my favourite travel destination. We hardly ever travel to the same place twice, but we gladly made an exception for this beautiful country when we took our kids there for our first big family trip. And we are certainly planning to return again. Sometimes we even contemplate moving to live there… and one day we might. For now it’s just a dream that grows bigger every time I look at the pictures from our trips to South Africa. It’s not so much about the pictures themselves – it’s not an easy task to produce good quality images when traveling with young children. It’s about how amazingly unique South Africa is.

Selection of my favourite South Africa photos

Table Mountain and Signal Hill in Cape Town

Table Mountain and Signal Hill in Cape Town at Sunset
This picture was taken on our first day in Cape Town. We left Belgium just the evening before and we were somewhat anxious about the trip traveling to the other side of the globe with our three little boys for the first time. But all the worries were forgotten and gone once we were there. The children have adapted to the new place very well and their willingness to explore places exceeded all our expectations on the first day already. During the two weeks we spent there we have done much more sightseeing than we ever though would be possible with our 2 year old twins. It was then that we decided we could try Australia as well.

Cape Point

Cape Point at the Cape of Good Hope in South Africa
This is not the famous Cape of Good Hope at the end of Cape Peninsula, but the Cape Point just next to it. It is standing here and looking at the endless ocean that you truly feel that you are at the end of the world.

Our family visit to Knysna Elephant Park

Little boy standing next to an elephant which is lying on the ground
Knysna Elephant Park is one of the first places we took our boys to on the Garden Route. We thought the kids would like to feed the elephants and we could take some nice pictures with them. What nobody expected was that our 2 year old son Sam would be the most at ease with these colossal animals. Somehow the elephants felt it too – one of them even went to lay on the ground and let Sam pet him, something which according to the people working there only happens very rarely and only when the elephants feel very much at ease.

Knysna Loerie

Green Knysna Loerie bird in South Africa
South Africa is all about nature, plants, and animals, and we saw a great variety of them. I just love this picture of Knysna Loerie (Turaco) – the bird I have never seen anywhere else before or after this trip.


Little kids watching wild turtles in South Africa
This picture always puts a smile on my face – three turtles walking in a row and our three boys running behind them in Monkeyland Primate Sanctuary. This game took a long time and I started to feel sorry for the poor animals, but then a monkey came along and the turtles were saved.

Tsitsikamma National Park

Tsitsikamma NP coast on our family trip on Garden Route in South Africa
This was our first time in Tsitsikamma National Park and we didn’t really know what to expect. What we found was this beautiful coastline with wild flowers and whales jumping in the distance (they are not in the picture – in case you are already looking for a magnifying glass…). We even managed to do one of the short walks (2km Storms River Mouth Hike) and our little hikers did just fine. The very first hike for them.


Close-up of a lioness in South Africa
South Africa is the country of the Big 5, and even though we didn’t go to Kruger National Park on this trip, we found plenty of other opportunities to watch animals. We even took the kids on a safari ride at Plettenberg Bay Game Reserve. This lioness is not photographed on a safari, but at a lion park near Cape Town. This is the closest I’ve ever been to a lion, within a hand’s reach and the wire between us, of course.

Dolphins in Hermanus

People watching dolphins on the coast of Hermanus in South Africa
Now you can get that magnifying glass! One of our favourite places in South Africa – Hermanus. There are many places in the world where you can see dolphins and whales, but none of them compares to Hermanus. Never before (or after this) have we seen so many dolphins and whales just standing ashore. There was a huge group of dolphins, hundreds of them, and we just walked along the coast and watched them for hours. I have nice close-up pictures of the dolphins as well, but this one is about the experience.

Cape Town aquarium

Little boy watching sharks in Cape Town aquarium
Another great experience for the whole family and one of my favorite photos.

Hermanus coastline

Hermanus beautiful coastline in South Africa
As I said, one of our favourite places – Hermanus coastline. We visited Hermanus twice and each time we hated to have to leave. As I write this, I am looking for a good excuse to return. Not that my husband needs convincing. If there’s one place in the world I don’t have to convince him about it’s South Africa. And that’s for someone who thought I was out of my mind when we booked our first trip there 10 years ago!

For more pictures from the North of the country and trip, inspiration check our Best of South Africa trip itinerary for 2 weeks.

Read more:
Best Places to Visit in South Africa
South Africa with Young Children: Our Travel Experience and Trip Itinerary
Which African Country is the Best Choice for a Family Trip


  1. Hi Jurga,
    I’ve just come across your really informative blog. We have literally just booked 2 weeks next August and reading the articles have confirmed that it’s going to be an amazing holiday. The children will be 11,9 and 6 when we go and I feel like the time is finally right for them to really value the experience they will have!
    Thank you!

    1. Author

      I’m sure it will be an amazing holiday for the whole family. Enjoy it!

  2. We were in the same area – totally agree with you, we’ve been travelling full-time for 2 1/2 years now and SA is the place that has blown me away more than any other.

    1. Author

      Same here. From all our trips, South Africa left the biggest impression. I would jump on the plane right away! 😉

  3. I have a picture of my daughter at the aquarium in Cape Town! Can’t beat South Africa for an excellent holiday – and a really great value destination too! As usual stunning photographs ?

    1. Author

      Thank you Tracy. It’s definitely difficult to beat South Africa, you don’t have to convince me! Wish we could go more often!

  4. Glad to see you had some lovely experiences in the Cape, my home, and have super photos to remember it by. Just two points: first, I’m sure those are tortoises and not turtles. Second, don’t tell your boys this but there have been allegations of cruelty at the elephant park (see Although the park denied the accusations, the case is still ongoing, If you’re keen on responsible travel it’s always good to avoid anything where you ride animals, touch them or walk with them because you can’t be sure what’s going on behind the scenes. (Like lion cub petting, for instance, and its connection with the Blood Lions issue. Google it, you’ll be horrified.)

    1. Author

      Just read the article Roxanne. I have to say that we don’t often go to places where animals can be touched, fed, etc. But we’ve been to Knysna Elephant Park twice and never had a feeling that the animals would be treated wrong there. If I remember well, most of the animals they have are saved from one or another place and would not be able to survive in the wild. I don’t think that feeding them some fruit (selected by their caretakers) is irresponsible, and the fact that the elephant laid down and let my son pet him surprised the people working there just as much as it surprised us – they said it hardly ever happened and nobody ever forced the elephant to do that. But I am also aware that not everything is as it looks everywhere you go, so thanks for sharing. This story seems to be more about the people and their personal vendetta against each other rather than about the animals.
      As for the turtles or tortoises, I honestly wouldn’t know the difference, thanks for pointing it out. 🙂

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