With miles of uninterrupted stretches, a beautiful scenery, long hours of sunshine as well as a moderate climate, South Africa is a perfect destination to visit this summer, especially for those who love outdoor activities. Going to South Africa, people can swim, run, cycle, or canoe, all of which are popular activites here. Each year South Africa attracts millions of visitors, many of them are outdoor persons.
Walking Boots and a Backpack
South Africa is an excellent place for outdoors people who love to pull on their walking boots, shoulder a backpack, and head off into the bush or across country. State parks have well marked trails with clean, if spartan, overnight accommodations. Hiking trails on private lands are also well serviced. Hiking routes like the Otter Trail and the Tsitsikamma Trail are so popular you have to book time on them well in advance. An organisation called Hiking South Africa lists some 250 hiking clubs around the country. It will provide you with up to date information.
Kloofing and Climbing
In South Africa, rock climbing is extremely popular in all its forms; traditional, sport, and bouldering. One of the best places for this activity is the Drakensberg in KwaZulu-Natal. Table Mountain in Cape Town poses challenges for experienced rock climbers. Getting back down by means of the abseil descent or the rap jump is an unforgettable thrill. Kloofing is a relatively new activity that is rapidly growing in popularity. It combines wading and hiking. Participants start at an upstream part of a mountain river and then swim, wade, and jump their way down; the best part being jumping off rocks into mountain pools. This calls for a reasonable degree of fitness. Visitors interested in rock climbing and kloofing can contact the Mountain Club of South Africa for information.
If heights don't bother you, then perhaps you'd like to try some of the sky high activities coordinated by the Aero Club of South Africa. They can arrange for you to go hang-gliding, micro lighting, parachuting, or hot air ballooning. Imagine sailing across a wildlife reserve in the basket of a hot air balloon, with the panorama of the African landscape all around! The balloon trip over the Winelands district near Cape Town is one of the most popular. You can also arrange helicopter tours. This is one of the most thrilling ways to see the vistas of Cape Town and Table Mountain. If you are a real thrill seeker, check out the local opportunities for bungee jumping. On the Garden Route, the dizzying 216 metre (709 foot) Bloukrans Bungee Jump claims to be the highest commercial jump in the world.
Wet and Wild
South Africa has 2500 kilometres (1,553 miles) of coastline, as well as many rivers, lakes and reservoirs. The possibilities for water sports and adventures are endless. The country is a mecca for surfers, and one of the best places in South Africa is Jeffrey's Bay on the Garden Route where the waves have to be seen to be believed. This is also a great place for windsurfing, sailing, kayaking, white water rafting, and sand boarding. The waters all along the South African coast offer terrific diving and snorkelling. There are shipwrecks, coral reefs, and kelp forests to explore, and an abundance of marine life to see. One of the best places in the world for diving is the St. Lucia Estuary Park in KwaZulu-Natal. For divers with the nerve, there is cage diving with great white sharks.