South Africa is well known as one of the best destinations for wildlife viewing. However, if you want to enjoy your experience fully, then it is advisable you plan your visit during the winter. In the steamy lush bushes, the local secret has it that mild winter acts as a welcome relief from the unbearable summer heat.
Here are the top 10 reasons why you should visit South Africa during the winter:
SUCCESSFUL SAFARIS :
During winters, there is sparse vegetation, making it easier to wade through the lush bush trails within the major game parks and reserves. Sparse vegetation and dry weather also play a significant role in drawing thirsty gems towards the waterholes. As such, it becomes very easy to see the Big Five such as the rhino, leopard, buffalo, elephant, and lion. It is a lucky occurrence that the favorable weather conditions experienced during the winters do not lead to large crowds and queues of safari vehicles since most tourists prefer visiting during the summer to combine both animal viewing and sun enjoyment.
GREAT AFFORDABILITY :
You will be enthused to know that demands to visit South Africa are inversely proportional to temperature changes. This means that as the temperatures become more favorable during the winters, the demand to visit reduces proportionately. What follows is the low-season pricing on accommodations and flights. If you want to enjoy the best price bargains, book your safari earlier, i.e., three to six months before your actual travel.
QUIET SIGHTS :
As noted earlier, the peak seasons in South Africa are often during the summers (between November to March). During such a time, you will notice that there are always long queues and jam-packed accommodations. However, during the winter, you will see a very different scenario. The museums are refreshingly quiet, the beaches on the garden route are peaceful and you can enjoy the tranquil wine tasting rooms in the Cape Winelands without interference.
FLEXIBLE TRAVEL :
Because there is greater affordability and availability of resources during the winter, visitors often have the flexibility to travel spontaneously. In other words, there are no restrictions of having to plan everything before the actual safari or book all the night’s accommodations before leaving home. Winter offers you a free chance to listen to what other guests say, then make a choice on the best regions that appeal to you.
ALTERNATIVE ACTIVITIES :
During winter, the snow on the ground and the weather facilitate the enjoyment of other exhilarating outdoor activities. Are you planning to enjoy either snowboarding or fancy skiing in Africa? Then you should plan and visit Mountainous Lesotho during the winter, and enjoy Afriski, which is considered the major ski resort in South Africa. Additionally, during the winters, the whale-watching activities increase, and the yearly Hermanus Whale Festival is often held in September.
POPULAR PURSUITS :
All the activities that South Africa is famous for such as diving and hiking are best supported during the winter. You will note that cooler weather is ideal for safaris and hiking alike. Some people think that it may be chilly. However, a cup of coffee is always set on board and is sufficient in warming you up. During winters, the mercury is below its summer highs, and therefore, it is more pleasant when you visit the bushes.
MINIMAL MALARIA RISK :
When you visit Kruger and other northeastern parts of South Africa, you are likely to be infected with malaria. However, for mosquitoes, the breeding conditions are often less favorable during the winters, reducing the risks of contracting malaria. However, it is still recommended that you use some of the usual precautionary measures such as the application of DEET-based repellent and prophylactic medication.
It is advantageous to visit during the winter because the four-legged inhabitants of the bush rarely hibernate during that time. However, it is noted that the Capetonians may hibernate. The four-legged inhabitants include wild dogs, warthog rutting, wildebeest, and the impala. Elephants often migrate to winter grazing grounds, making it easier to see them.
INDOOR ENTERTAINMENT :
If you are planning to be part of the culture appreciation team, go shopping, enjoy the cuisine and wine that South Africa is globally recognized for, then you should plan your trip during the winter. Cape Town’s V& Waterfront or Johannesburg’s 44 Stanley are must-visit destinations if you want to enjoy boutique retail. Nevertheless, you have the freedom to choose between the numerous hundreds of Wineland’s testing rooms.
CELESTIAL SOUTH AFRICA IN THE WINTER :
During the southern winter, the heavens are likely to be clearer. There are also other sea-and land-based benefits to enjoy during the winter. Lower temperatures facilitate clearer skies, consequently enhancing better stargazing. You will have to take a night sky safari in the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, Cederberg range, and Sutherland.
Hope you liked the content – Top 10 Reasons to Visit South Africa in the Winter by Safarihub experts.
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