Hoping to escape the daily hustle and bustle, log off from the world, and spend some time among nature and the great outdoors? Here are some of the best ways to go off the grid in South Africa for those looking for places that offer some amazing spots to completely switch off and unwind.
Escape to Mountain Zebra National Park in the Eastern Cape
The Mountain Zebra National Park, is, as its name suggests, a haven for Cape Mountain Zebra. The accommodation options include cottages, a campsite and a guesthouse. The mountain cottages are the best option for totally escaping as they’re secluded, rustic and, best of all, can only be accessed by 4×4 or 2×4 vehicles. Check out Bakana and Umthombo Mountain Huts, there’s no electricity—only solar and gas—and no internet.
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Looking for an expert's perspective?Uncover my top 3 recommended places from each continent on the map.
1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
Go on an Eco-Friendly Turtle Tour in Kosi Bay, KwaZulu Natal
Kosi Bay in KwaZulu Natal is the perfect spot to experience uninterrupted relaxation. The area is fairly remote, although it’s becoming increasingly popular due to its white beaches and warm climate. There are many accommodation options to choose from, one being Bhanga Nek Beach Camp—all proceeds from the camp are donated to the local community to support development. After arriving, make sure to go on an eco-friendly turtle tour. Leatherback and Loggerhead turtles are seen along the coastline as they trek the beaches to nest each year from November to February.
Go to Hell in the Western Cape
Travel through the Swartberg Pass and reach Die Hel (The Hell), an unspoiled part of the vast Karoo that offers visitors total peace and quiet. The area used to be home to a small community of Afrikaners and today, it’s more commonly known as Gamkaskloof. Die Hel lies within the Swartberg Nature Reserve, a World Heritage Site with, and has much to explore. Those hoping to spend a few days here, check out Fossil Ridge Eco Lodge. There’s no electricity—only solar and gas amenities. From here, negotiate the land and find the San rock art and artifacts.
Switch Phones Off in the Baviaanskloof, Eastern Cape
The Baviaanskloof is renowned as one of the most breathtaking valleys in South Africa and is also a World Heritage site. The term Baviaanskloof means “valley of baboons”, and visitors will be overwhelmed by the utter vastness of the gorges. From hikes and 4×4 trails to many craft stores and rock-art spots, there’s much on offer in the Baviaanskloof. Looking for the ultimate escape? Book a spot at the Just for Two Cottage, there’s no mobile reception or electricity, so guests have to make use of the paraffin lamps and gas stoves.
Choose Between Mountains or the Ocean in the Cederberg, Western Cape
The Cederberg area is an approximately two-hour drive from Cape Town and offers an unspoiled, pristine landscape ideal for those who wish to escape the city over a weekend. Whether mountain or sea views, this far-stretching area has it all. There are also many hiking trails, birding opportunities, Bushman-rock art to discover, and mountain pools to cool off in. Stay in Heuningvlei Backpackers Lodge, situated in an outpost village of the Moravian Mission Church at Wupperthal.
Discover the Quaint Town of Prince Albert in the Western Cape
Prince Albert is a small village situated in the foothills of the Swartberg Mountains. There’s much to do in the area, so it’s ideal for those wishing to relax but who still need some luxuries. Prince Albert has a population of approximately 13,000 people, so the small town is home to quaint cafés, restaurants, and beautiful accommodation options. Check out the Karoo View Cottages as they’re family and pet friendly and have all the comforts of home discerning guests might be after.
Go into the Wild in the Kruger National Park
The Kruger National Park is South Africa’s ultimate safari and wildlife destination, and spending time in a bush camp guarantees getting off the grid. The Bateleur Bushveld Camp is the park’s oldest and smallest of all the bush-veld camps. As it’s situated close to two watering holes, guests can expect to see plenty of game.
Go Horseback Riding in Hogsback, Eastern Cape
Whether an experienced rider or not, horseback riding in Hogsback is a must. Visitors will get close to nature as they travel through mountains and forests, experiencing all the beauty that this part of the country has to offer. Hogsback is situated approximately 1200 metres (3937.008 feet) above sea level. Although it has become one of the most appealing vacation spots in the country, the area has preserved its remote feel.
Soak in the Beauty of the Wild Coast and Coffee Bay
Feel like taking a walk on the wild side? Visit the Wild Coast. From 4×4 trails, horseback riding, hiking, diving, and fishing, the beautiful Wild Coast in the Eastern Cape offers all of that and more. The Wild Coast stretches from the Mtamvuna River to the Great Kei River and is perfect for those wishing to get close to nature. While along this beautiful stretch of the country, make sure to stop in Coffee Bay and overnight in Coffee Shack Backpackers or Nenga River Lodge.
Go to AfrikaBurn in the Tankwa Karoo National Park
The Tankwa Karoo National Park, within the Great Karoo, is at first sight nothing more than an arid, desert landscape. Visitors, however, soon notice the many different displays of life so evident in the park. From succulents to antelope and birds, there’s much to see during the day. At night, there’s a spectacular display of stars. The park is also host to the AfrikaBurn Festival, where locals and foreigners alike gather to create a temporary city free of monetary value, electricity, phones, and any pretension.
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Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
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