is heaven for thrill-seekers. Beyond the bustling metropolis, the South African city is also home to numerous natural wonders. Think nature parks and wildlife reserves where Mother Nature still flourishes. They're some of the best places to go on a South African safari, an adventure you won't want to miss! But where do you go, exactly? Well, there's the Inverdoorn Game Reserve where the world's most majestic mammals roam free. The Sanbona Wildlife Reserve also has its fair share of fascinating fauna—a true must-see! And if you want a more luxurious safari, look no further than the Gondwana Private Game Reserve!
Aquila Game Reserve
The Aquila Game Reserve is the closest safari to Cape Town. The area is right along the outskirts of town, so much so that you could already hear the animals' roars in the city. The reason why the Aquila Game Reserve is regarded as one of South Africa’s best safaris is that it has all the “Big Five” game animals on full display. Lions lie majestically on their territory. Leopards fascinate with their show-stopping spots. And elephants march along in their full colossal glory. It's as if a zoology textbook came to life right in front of your very eyes!
Cape of Good Hope
In contrast to the imposing giants in the Aquila Game Reserve, the Cape of Good Hope features smaller but still fascinating feathered friends: penguins. The safari is located on the coast of the Cape Peninsula, a rugged landscape that isn’t exactly as family-friendly as the beaches in Cape Town
. Nevertheless, the scenery is just as awe-inspiring. When the waves hit the shoreline, you'll get to see a picture that's worth even more than a thousand words. But don't forget about the penguins too! The ones here are just as adorable as those you've seen in zoos, movies, or on TV.
Fairy Glen Private Game Reserve
Similar to the Aquila Game Reserve, the Fairy Glen Private Game Reserve is also close to Cape Town. It's not exactly in the central neighborhoods in Cape Town
, per se, but it'll take you less than a day to get there. Once you do, be on the lookout for the 'Big Five' game animals. Though there are a lot of them roaming around, they're not as easy to spot as those in other safaris on this list. It does, however, make for such fun trying to look for them as you explore the reserve's incredible landscapes.
Gondwana Private Game Reserve
Gondwana Private Game Reserve offers the best of both worlds. Located a bit farther from Cape Town—about a four-and-a-half-hour drive away—the safari is far from the conveniences of the city. Though once you get here, you'll know that you won't need them at all! Why? Because the Gondwana Private Game Reserve features vacation villas and upscale camps right smack in the center of the animal's habitat. Don't worry. You'll still be safe from wildlife, but it's pretty cool to get to lie down and get a tan beside lions. Or take a dip in a private swimming pool as buffalos march on the nearby hills.
Goudkop Bush Camp
Though not as luxurious as Gondwana Private Game Reserve, the Goudkop Bush Camp offers just as much comfort. Within this rugged wildlife reserve are big huts and expansive camps where you can rest and relax with little to no hassle. There are beds, bathrooms with plumbing, kitchens for cooking, and more. And once you go outside of your respective huts, you're treated to the vast expanse of South Africa's countryside. Sheep and cattle are nearby, but if you want to see the area's true natural inhabitants, you'll need to go further into the reserve.
Inverdoorn Game Reserve
One of the best tips for going on a safari
is to bring the right gear and make sure they're well-charged. Trust that you'll be using them in many of these amazing safaris in Cape Town, not the least of which is here in the Inverdoon Game Reserve. Located in the vast Karoo region, which is about a two-hour drive away from the city, you're practically on your own here. There's still a guide, sure, but part of the reserve's thrill is getting to see lions, zebras, elephants, and more up close. And if your phone isn't well-charged, you risk not capturing them for an Instagram-worthy shot.
Marine Big 5 Safari
When you think of safaris, you mostly think of going to wildlife reserves to see the big mammals of the Earth. True enough, many of the places on this list are exactly that too. But what about the sea creatures? A “safari” is defined as an “expedition to observe animals in their natural habitat.” Shouldn't that include fishes, crustaceans, and more? Well, it certainly does in Cape Town's Marine Big 5 Safari. True to its name, the safari lets you sail away in the sea where you can get up close and personal with whales, sharks, and many other sea creatures.
Sanbona Wildlife Reserve
Finally, there's the Sanbona Wildlife Reserve, a 58,000-hectare safari that's only a three-hour drive away from Cape Town. Situated in the rugged valley of the Karoo region, this place also puts a luxurious spin on the wonders of wildlife. You'll still get to see your fair share of lions, elephants, giraffes, and more here, don't worry! But beyond that, you'll also get to experience glamping. It's a more upscale take on traditional camping and is just as worthwhile too. During the day, you can see the creatures in their full glory, and at night, you can relax and rejuvenate in a luxurious tent. What's not to love?
Want to have the adventure of a lifetime? Then check out these amazing safaris in Cape Town! From the majestic Big Five game to the sweeping landscapes and even a bit of luxury sprinkled in, these are wonderful retreats you won't want to miss!