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The Residence

Mauritius, Indian Ocean

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Explore Cape Town and the beautiful Winelands. Head down to the beaches of the Garden Route and then on to a safari in the Eastern Cape. This is a great area for all families and is malaria free.

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Fact File

  • Flight time: 13 hours to Cape Town
  • Best time to go:  Year round. Best time to visit the Cape is October - March, best time to visit the North is May-October
  • Time difference: GMT +2 hrs
  • Currency:  Rand
  • Visa requirements: Not required for UK passport holders
  • Innoculations: The Southern part of South Africa is malaria free and does not require innoculations.

    Holidays to South Africa: South & East Coast

    Cape Town, one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the world, is the perfect place to start or finish your holiday in South Africa with its fantastic hotels, excellent shopping and restaurants. The Winelands are within easy reach and a must-see for the stunning scenery, historic towns, wonderful Cape-Dutch architecture and the world-renowned vineyards. Even without the safari’s of the Kruger this is a wonderful area for a family holiday and some winter sun. Take the children whale watching, see the penguins on the Cape Peninsular or hunting for bushman paintings in the Cedarberg. There is so much for all the family to do and with a fantastic exchange rate it is one of the least expensive destinations once you are there – which is always a bonus! The southern coast of South Africa and the Eastern Cape also have some wonderful beaches and being completely malaria free it is the ideal place for you to take young children on their first safari.

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    Plettenberg Bay, South Africa: South & East Coast

    Situated just outside Plettenberg in the heart of the Crags this hotel is surrounded but fantastic activities for the whole family including some of this areas best beaches. If the 5* hotels are too expensive then this 4* hotel makes a great alternative with a fantastic pool, good family rooms and stunning views.

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    Hog Hollow Main Lodge

    Our rating: Scrumptious Rating explaination
    Rooms: 16
    Interleading rooms: No
    Childrens facilities:Limited
    Style: Boutique
    Kids club: No
    Baby sitters: Yes
    Nightly rates from:
    Per Person: From £108 pppn BB
    2 adults & 2 children £330 pn BB
    Complimentary age sharing: 0-2yrs

    Eastern Cape, South Africa: South & East Coast

    Just 2 hours outside Port Elizabeth this wonderful hotel is set on the high dunes overlooking seven kilometres of stunning deserted beaches. Oceana has only 10 rooms and is best described as a luxury beach hideaway which is located in its own 1000 hectare estate. This is an ideal spot for families wanting a wonderful beach but with an equally fantastic and very exclusive lodge.

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    Our rating: Lovely Rating explaination
    Rooms: 7 rooms, 1 house
    Interleading rooms: No
    Childrens facilities:Limited
    Setting: Beach
    Kids club: No
    Baby sitters: Yes
    Nightly rates from:
    Per Person: From £353 pppn FB
    2 adults & 2 chidlren from £1180 pn FB
    Complimentary age sharing: 0-3yrs

    Port Elizabeth, South Africa: South & East Coast

    Kwandwe Ecca Lodge specialises in families and for us is the best safari lodge on the South Coast. 22,000 hectares of pristine reserve is the home to all the Big Five. With just two main lodges you don’t see other vehicles when you are out and about. And back at camp the huge suites with their separate sitting rooms means you can have children in your cottage but you still have your own privacy.

    Suitable for: Ideal for families with children aged 6+ (the age children are allowed on game drives) however children younger than this age are well looked after with separate shorter game drives.

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    Kwandwe Ecca Lodge

    Our rating: Utterly Fab Rating explaination
    Rooms: 6
    Interleading rooms: No
    Childrens facilities:Yes limited
    Setting: Bush
    Kids club: No
    Baby sitters: Yes
    Nightly rates from:
    Per Person:
    Complimentary age sharing:

    South Africa: South & East Coast

    Without a doubt the best family safari lodge in the Eastern Cape. This beautifully renovated original settlers homestead is just ideal for families and set on 22,000 hectares of the most fantastic game reserve in this area. The house is exclusive use and comes with its own ranger. It is also securely fenced and has plenty of lawn for children to play around on. This is our top option for families in the malaria free south coast.

    Suitable for: Families with children of all ages, all ages are allowed on game drives.

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    Kwandwe Uplands Homestead - Exclusive Use

    Our rating: Utterly Fab Rating explaination
    Rooms: 3
    Interleading rooms: No
    Childrens facilities:No
    Setting: Bush
    Style: Classic
    Kids club: No
    Baby sitters: Yes
    Nightly rates from:
    Per Person:
    Complimentary age sharing:

    When to Travel

    South Africa has three main climatic zones with their seasons opposite to ours so their winter is our summer.

    The High and Lowveld areas around the Kruger and up to Madikwe and the Waterberg have hot summers which are famous for spectacular electric storms.  The rains come in November,  December and January.  October in the Kruger can be very hot and dry just waiting for the first rains.  And in their winter months (April – September) the weather is warm during the day with lovely cool nights – ideal for sitting around a camp fire.  We personally love September in the Highveld which can have hot days with not a cloud in the sky and warmer nights.

    Cape Town and the Garden route have a climate which is very similar to the south of France.  Summers for them are lovely and hot (running from October to April) with the chance of occasional rain.  And at this time there is a strong wind through Cape Town which can help keep the temperatures pleasant.  Late summers are dry and warm with less wind.  And their winter between May and September can be cool and wet. 

    The east of the country, in KwaZulu-Natal, has a sub-tropical climate which ensures hot, humid summers along the coast with more rain than in the winter.  Winters are pleasantly warm during the day and cooler at night.

    • January - Best
    • February - Best
    • March - Best
    • April - Good
    • May - Good
    • June - Hit and miss
    • July - Not at its best
    • August - Not at its best
    • September - Good
    • October - Best
    • November - Best
    • December - Best


    We maybe biased as we spent a great deal of our younger days on holiday in SA but for us there isn’t a better destination for families.  To start with there is little or no jet-lag and the overnight flights mean children can get a full 8 hours of sleep before arriving as fresh faced as any long haul destination can be.  And then, often most importantly, due to the English presence in SA for over 200 years, everything is as you expect in the UK.  Shops have the same food, speak the same language, have the same medicine and baby paraphernalia.  They drive on our side of the road, eat similar food and understand how to make a good cup of tea!  In many ways it is very similar to the UK but with better food and wine, better weather, cheaper and most importantly its one huge safari park.  They have whales, elephants, sharks, lions, spiders – in fact just about everything children love (or love to hate) Here parents can actually do things with their children that they all enjoy.  Finger painting may not unite fathers and daughters but watching elephants swimming certainly does.  We spent 3 months in SA travelling around with our daughters and it is an experience we will never forget.  Watching their faces as they see a lion in the wild for the first time is just incredible.  We learned along the way that, unlike hotels, you really need safari lodges that genuinely cater for families not just accept families.  It’s no good producing dinner at 8 pm for the whole camp because your nippers will have lost the will to live by then.  And safari drives can’t be 3 straight hours if you don’t want children to start bouncing out of the back.  But we have found some true gems and here you will have the family holiday of a life time.

    Country Info

    Flights: Overnight direct flights with Virgin, British Airways and South African Airways to Johannesburg and Cape Town.  From where you catch connecting internal flights to the Kruger (45 minutes) Durban (1 ½ hrs) and George Airport (45 minutes from Cape Town) on the Garden route.

    Food and Drink

    South Africa doesn't really have a national cuisine, and most of what you eat will be international dishes, but cooked with local produce, which is excellent. You will notice a lot of meat on the menu including game meats such as Kudu and springbok.  The South Africans are great meat eaters and you will find their tradition ‘brai’ is the most elaborate BBQ you will ever go to.  They even build their own outside bomas for such occasions with a huge fire in the centre and lanterns hanging from every tree.

    And the beer isn’t bad either (I would say that as my great grandfather started South African breweries) The wine is also delicious and wins world wide praise.  You will note when you are there that the smaller vineyards don’t allow their wine to be sold out of the country so the best SA wines are often only to be found there.

    Children wont struggle finding things they love to eat.

    Things to do

    Please find below a range of activities available in South Africa: South & East Coast.

    Suggested Itineraries

    We know it is often difficult, with the huge number of hotels out there, to know which one to go for, which combines with which and what sort of costs they are going to be. Here we have put together a few of our favourite options to give you a starting point. Any of these options can be changed, tweeked or added to so please do ask. The prices are per person and include international flights and private transfers. As the rates at all hotels change a great deal from their High Seasons (i.e the most popular times of the year to be there) to their Low Seasons (they often have great discounts at this time) we have based the 'From' costs on a good time of year to be in the country, the dates are included in the text at the bottom. Please do call us for a quote based on your dates.