Why visit South Africa with Contiki?

Safari With the Experts

Travel with the BEST Trip Managers, who are also highly-trained safari guides. They’ll keep a hawk-eye on the wildlife most of us can’t spot easily. (Even nature’s camouflage can’t fool them).

Make a Good Impact

From visiting a shark conservancy to taking a township tour, our MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experiences help you put every penny to good use – whether it’s protecting wildlife or helping local schools.

Stay at Stellar Spots

You’ll be out in the wild on our South Africa trips for 18-35s, so accommodation’s key. That’s why we arrange central hotels, beachside resorts and even the chance to sleep under the stars!


Based on 20,000+ independent reviews

South Africa tour reviews

The Garden Route and Addo trip was amazing! Full of incredible adventures, locations and sites that I feel very grateful to have experienced. Our group bonded so quickly, with the help of our lovely tour manager Jesse and our tour manager in-training Melissa!

- Chloe Ball, Garden Route and Addo


We had so much fun and learned so much about the communities and culture on this trip. Because of the size of the tour, we really got to bond with everyone and it made the trip so unique and fun.

- Eric Volfango, Cape, Safari and Falls

This trip has been my favourite Contiki so far. I’ve never experienced such warmth in culture, kindness in people, joy in wildlife and awe of scenery. It's a beautiful slice of heaven in this world. South Africa stole a piece of my heart.

- Emma H, Southern Africa Safari


Frequently asked questions

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What are the visa requirements for travelling to South Africa?

This depends on your country of origin. In some cases, your visa is free and you can collect it when you arrive in South Africa. In others, if you’re travelling from New Zealand for example, you’ll need to arrange your visa ahead of time. Click here to find out visa requirements based on your home country.

What is the best time to visit South Africa?

May – September is the best time to visit if you’re here for the safaris. These are the South African winter months, so you’re more likely to spot wildlife congregating around the watering holes (and the weather will be less intense too.)

South Africa has something to offer all year round, though. Visit in November – March for the festivals, September – October for whale watching, or June – August if you’re travelling on a budget.

What should I pack for a trip to South Africa?

Your packing list will depend on where you’re going, the time of year you’re travelling, and the activities you plan to do on your trip. A good starting point would be:

- Sunglasses, a sun hat and sunscreen
- Hiking boots and comfy socks
- Insect repellent
- A good camera (especially for those safaris)
- Hydration tablets
- A torch/headlamp and binoculars

Read our Africa travel guide for more info.

What are the best national parks to visit in South Africa?

Kruger is South Africa’s most famous national park, and one of the biggest too. Other great areas for game drives include Addo Elephant Park, Pilanesberg National Park and West Coast National Park. Don’t miss Tsitsikamma for its immense natural beauty and views of the Storms River suspension bridges. Table Mountain is also a must-see while you’re there too.

What is the currency used in South Africa?

South Africa’s main currency is the rand, which has been in use since 1961. 

Is tipping required in South Africa?

Tipping is the norm in South Africa. Tipping service staff between 10 and 20% would be acceptable.

Do I need travel insurance to go on a trip to South Africa with Contiki?

Yes. In order to travel with us, you’ll need an insurance policy that covers all the activities listed in your trip itinerary.

What is ATM access like in South Africa? 

There’s good ATM access throughout South Africa. They accept most major credit/debit cards like Visa and MasterCard. Just be sure to check ahead for those sneaky fees while using your card abroad. 

How many days should I spend in South Africa?

We’d recommend at least 1-2 weeks to really get your fill of everything on offer.

Is tap water safe to drink in South Africa?

On the whole, tap water is safe to drink in cities and towns. Some rural areas may not have filtered drinking water, but you’ll easily be able to get bottled water.

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