Graaff-Reinet lies between Cape Town and Jo’burg and is 300km from Port Elizabeth. The jewel of the Karoo, it’s an oasis of gracious old charm in the heat of its dusty surroundings.
- Nieu Bethesda
This tiny archetypal Karoo village is tucked into a valley in the shadow of the Kompasberg Mountain, part of the Sneeuberg range. It’s best known as the home of the Owl House.
- Somerset East
Walter Battis, the eccentric artist lived here, old fashioned roses flourish and the odd historic monument decorates the tree-lined back streets.
A malaria free wilderness area where the Big Five roam.
Seeped in Settler history, Grahamstown is a real student town and when Rhodes University shuts for the holiday the town closes and goes home. Joke. But close enough.
Truth is, when you put enough students together, something fun always happens - so keep an ear open for what's on when you're there.
Hogsback is one of those soft places that somehow speeds up the passing of time. Dominated by the impressive Amatola mountain range, she has a charm and mystique all of her own. She's whimsical, teasing, enchanting and downright wicked.
Located on the N6, this is a good overnight stop between Jo'burg and the Wild coast or the Garden Route.
Close to the Amatola Mountains and off the beaten track, this town offers yet another opportunity to discover South African via the back roads.
Situated on the N10 between Port Elizabeth and Cradock, this is a real country town stopover.
Addo Elephant Park
Addo has three backpackers. It is the best place in South Africa to see elephants close up.
Elephants for Africa
Begun with a mere 2 000ha and 11 elephants and now covering 165 000 hectares with 470 elephants roaming its plains, the Addo Elephant National Park has been home to a growing number of ellies for the past 70 odd years. The Park’s next most important inhabitant is the dung beetle who lives in dung beetle heaven.
Lion and hyena were re-introduced to Addo 18 months ago.
Places to Stay
- Avoca River Cabins
This backpackers in Addo is on a working citrus farm which is on the banks of the Sundays River.
- Wild Woody Cape Backpackers
A backpackers in the Addo National Park with access to game reserves, rivers and one of the most stunning bits of coastline in the world
What to do
Help research the movements of lions in the Addo.
(randomly selected service providers from all regions)
They are less than 1km from a gate into the Kruger National Park.
Do Jo'burg and surrounds in depth.
This Drakensberg backpacking hostel is surrounded by indigenous gardens and beautiful mountains.
(Northern Drakensberg,Drakensberg Backpacker Hostels)
(Muizenberg and Kalk Bay,Cape Town)
Cullinan Backpackers is a great place to chill after a busy day, meet other travellers or enjoy an array of adventures in Pretoria.
High up on the plateau with spectacular views, they are within easy reach of Livingstonia and Manchewe Falls.
(The Kruger National Park,Malawi)
This is the oldest lodge in Observatory and is the play ground of students....put your party shoes on!
Located in the centre of the village, this thatched backpackers lodge has a pub and restaurant and is just a stones throw from the beach.
(St Francis Bay,Sunshine Coast)
Awesome adventures in Sabie...
A smaller lodge with a friendly owner - all rooms ensuite