Win a set of JULY suitcases worth $1,125! T&Cs apply

The One Thing ... South Africa

By ben Groundwater

south africa

By Ben Groundwater

The One Thing You Should Do
In South Africa ...

Go camping

Maybe you’re a little concerned about your safety in South Africa, and that’s understandable. This is a country in which you should take a few precautions, you should keep your wits about you. But still, if you’re thinking that the idea of going camping is a little too intimidating, think again. This might just be the greatest country in the world for those who love to sleep rough in the wild. 

First off: the safety factor. It’s very unlikely that you will be harmed by wild animals while you’re camping in South Africa. Large campsites in game reserves are usually fenced, while even in the smaller sites that are a little wilder, animals keep their distance. There’s also no worries about human inhabitants: you’ll find South Africans are some of the friendliest people you could hope to meet, and plenty of fellow campers will come over for a chat once you start setting up. 

But there’s more to it than that. South Africa is also spectacularly beautiful, and you’ll find campsites in locations so stunning you almost wouldn’t believe they’re real. It’s also filled with wildlife, and there’s no experience that can compare with lying awake at night and listening to the distant roar of a lion.  

And even without the lions, when you find yourself sitting around under a blanket of stars, roasting meat on an open fire, drinking a gin and tonic and toasting the world at large, you’ll understand why camping in South Africa is so unmissable.   


south africa

The One Thing You Should Not Do
In South Africa Is ...

Refuse to drive

South Africa is a country that’s made for road trips. Its highways are fast and reliable. Its city streets are busy but easy enough to navigate. Its drivers are courteous and friendly. And a road trip in South Africa will take you to all sorts of places you otherwise would never go.   

This may seem, to begin with, like a pretty adventurous option. Africa as a whole can be intimidating for first-timers, and tackling it on your own, in a car, might appear to be a step too far. But don’t discount it. This is a great way to see southern Africa. 

Begin in Cape Town, where you can take one of the world’s great drives south, through seaside Kalk Bay and down to small Cape settlements like Fishhoek, Simon’s Town and Boulders Beach, where penguin colonies abound. You can then round the Cape of Good Hope and head back to Cape Town via beautiful Camps Bay. 

A trip like that should whet your appetite, and that’s a good thing, because there’s plenty more driving to be done here. Explore the wine country around Stellenbosch and Franschhoek. See the wildflowers in coastal Langebaan. Drive the famous Garden Route to Mossel Bay. Explore the Drakensburg mountains. And of course, check out the Big 5 in Kruger National Park. Driving really is the ultimate way to see this country.  


Find out more insider tips about other destinations: read all the articles in Ben's "One Thing" series here

Recommended For You

secret spot
Bali Guide

Have a fun, safe & enjoyable holiday with our guide to staying safe in Bali.

secret spotUSA Guide

This guide is packed full handy hints, tips and tricks from those in the know. 

secret spot
Thailand Guide

Handy tips and tricks to keep you safe on your next trip to Thailand

uk guide UK Guide 

Good neighbourly tips and advice to keep you safe on your next trip to the UK.


The One Thing Series From Ben Groundwater


From Spain to Singapore, you can find all of Ben's One Thing Articles right here.

Singapore - The One Thing

Ben Groundwater shares his expert advice about holidaying in amazing Singapore.

France - The One Thing

Before biting into the baguette, check out this advice from Ben Groundwater.

China - The One Thing

Ben Groundwater shares his tips on what to do and not do when you next visit China.

NZ - The One Thing

Off to the land of the Kiwis. Check out travel writer Ben Groundwater's helpful hints.

Sri Lanka - The One Thing

Make the most out of your trip to Sri Lanka with Ben Groundwater's helpful tips.

Canada - The One Thing

Check out these great tips from Ben Groundwater before you plan your next trip to Canada.

China - The One Thing

Read up on Ben Groundwater's insider tips before you plan your next trip to Cambodia.

China - The One Thing

Make sure you read Ben Groundwater's tip on how not to shake up your trip to Chile

Spain - The One Thing

Heading to Spain? Be sure to pack these words of wisdom with you when heading off.