The Cederberg is a wilderness area with some fantastic indigenous cedar forests, San rock paintings, magical waterfalls and bizarre rock formations. In winter, you'll find snow capped peaks and in summer you'll trade your soul for an ice cube.
Paternoster and the adjacent Cape Columbine Nature Reserve are an easy drive from Cape Town - but far enough away to give a taste of true West Coast splendour.
Small, sweet and home to some serious satire.
Lying at the foot of the Cederberg, Clanwilliam's biggest drawcard is the Cederberg Mountains.
Citrusdal is home, as it's name suggests, to a citrus growing industry. Nestling in the beautiful Olifants River valley between fynbos clad mountains, it makes a great base for exploring the area and everything it has to offer - such as hiking, mountain biking, horse riding, spring flower hunting and the art of pure relaxation.
- Saldanha Bay
This safe natural harbour is home to a navy training base and a hub for the fishing industry. Thanks to its encircling arms, the bay is not only super safe for swimming and a top spot for sailing, but the water is also warmed by the sun, making it lekker* to swim in, unlike the rest of the West Coast, which is generally a breath-freezing temperature.
- Eland's Bay
This is a surfer's (and beach lover's) paradise with the best left hand break in S.A. according to Surf bum Geoff.
Set on the coast overlooking a beautiful azure lagoon, Langebaan is a watersports paradise.
Namaqualand, on first impressions, is a harsh, relentless, arid wilderness. Its few inhabitants are burned and dehydrated by the sun and scorching winds, but far from loathing the territory, they have an intense affection for it.
The high places in the mountains around Piketberg once offered sanctuary to groups of San (Bushmen) and some fine examples of their rock art can still be seen in the area.
This wilderness vastness (bounded in the north by the curve of the Orange River) offers hilly, rugged terrain distinguished by weird wind-sculptured rock pillars and spires. It's brown and bone dry except for the odd astonishingly lush greenness of irrigated lands.
Springbok is the largest town in Namaqualand proper and at the centre of the spectacular springtime flower show.
Founded around a bubbling spring of clear water, and an important centre for sheep and wheat farmers, "the town of peace" is situated 13km inland from Saldanha and is one of the bigger towns in the area. This is the only town with real backpacker accommodation on the West Coast.
This large fishing village is something of a birdwatchers' paradise.
A bird watching paradise.
Bird Island (a bit of a misnomer since you can walk to it via the harbour wall) is haven to a huge colony of Cape gannets, cormorants, penguins, seagulls and "sterretjies". Altogether the islet plays host to more than 150 different seabirds species.
You can visit the Longvlei Dam, which is about a dozen kilometres inland, where, after good winter rains, the flamingos gather in their thousands. Further down the coast at Eland's Bay (a 48km drive along the gravel road) you'll find a good beach, excellent surf when the south easter blows and the West Coast's only river estuary where great numbers of seabirds and waders congregate.
Fantastic open-air seafood feasts can be enjoyed at Muisbosskerm.
(randomly selected service providers from all regions)
Stone Cottage in Plettenberg Bay is a Boutique Backpackers & Suites where spectacular views of the bay and a communal deck with jacuzzi, are the order of the day.
(Plettenberg Bay,Garden Route)
Safaris leaving from Gauteng and travelling to Victoria Falls via Botswana.
(Victoria Falls,Zimbabwe and Zambia)
The Oude Molen Eco Village provides an interesting alternative to regular city living.
Ashanti's sister lodge near the sea...
(Green Point,Cape Town)
The travel specialists for Botswana
(Addo Elephant Park,Botswana)
They offer a small lodge and a travel centre.
(Cape Town City Centre,Cape Town)
Amphitheatre Lodge and Backpackers is a backpackers lodge which overlooks miles of mountains and offers a great base to explore the Drakensberg.
(Northern Drakensberg,Drakensberg Backpacker Hostels)
Travellers Inn is in Rustenburg, conveniently situated for access to the Magaliesberg, Sterkfontein, Plilanesberg and Sun City.
(Rustenburg and surrounds,North West Province)
Backpackers here's a chance to stay at a Big-5 Game Reserve and a 5-Star Lodge at budget prices.
(Port Elizabeth,Sunshine Coast)