South Africa Safari Holidays from India
Surrounded by oceans and captivating views, South Africa is the perfect holiday destination for all types of travellers: honeymooners, families, and especially adventure seekers. With superb infrastructure and wonderful hospitality, it is truly a memorable destination. Most itineraries to South Africa begin in Johannesburg and cover Kruger National Park (or the adjacent private reserves), Cape Town, the Winelands (Franschhoek & Stellenbosch) and parts of the Garden Route.
It is a great first safari destination as many of the game reserves and parks have the Big 5 (lion, leopard, rhino, elephant, cape buffalo), a must-see for first-time safari-goers. It also has some unique and unusual safari destinations such as large private game reserves in the North near the Kalahari as well as in the east near Durban.
If you are planning on visiting South Africa on a holiday from India there are several things you should keep in mind.
Is South Africa the right destination for me?
Our answer in one word: YES! South Africa is a beautiful destination for all sorts of travellers. It has beautiful vistas and wonderful food, romantic retreats and a vibrant arts and culture scene, and wildlife like no other place in the world.
I am vegetarian. Will I get vegetarian / Indian food in South Africa?
Yes, you will easily get great vegetarian food all over South Africa. South Africa produces some of the best fresh vegetables and fruits in the world, so expect delicious food. And while there are great Indian restaurants in most major cities of South Africa, the food may not be the same as what you get at home. So, we normally suggest that you opt for continental dishes. Another plus point: most chefs in South Africa are trained in Jain style cuisine, so you can easily order food without onions or garlic.
Where should I go in South Africa?
Take a look at our sample list of South Africa tours and holiday itineraries. We generally customize all our tours, so feel free to get in touch.
How soon should I book my South Africa holiday?
If you are travelling from November to February, we recommend booking well in advance to get the properties of your choice. Christmas is usually very busy in South Africa (it’s peak season and the summer months) and most good properties (especially the safari lodges) get booked out 3-6 months in advance.
If you’re are travelling during from April to October, it will be easier to get space as this is usually the off-peak season. It is winter in the Southern Hemisphere, however, it does not get too chilly. It is also the best time to go for safaris, and well in time with Indian summer holidays.
What’s the weather like in South Africa?
Can I drive in South Africa? Will my Indian driving license work?
Yes, you can! And we highly recommend it. The roads are in wonderful condition; you drive on the same side of the road as India, and an Indian driving license (written in English) works! Read more about self-driving in South Africa here.
How can I get a tourist visa to South Africa as an Indian citizen?
Do I need any vaccinations to go to South Africa?
No, you don’t, unless you are travelling to South Africa from a country where you need to take a vaccination. Read more about this here. Malaria is prevalent in some areas of South Africa. Generally, our Indian guests do not take any medications for this, but carry a mosquito-repellant like Odomos.
How to get to South Africa from India?
There are no longer any direct flights from India to South Africa. You will have to have one stopover, either somewhere in the Middle East (Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Doha), or Ethiopia, or Kenya. The shortest flight from Mumbai, Delhi or Bangalore to Johannesburg is usually Emirates, taking approximately 13 – 15 hours including stopover.
However, Emirates is usually more expensive than other airlines. We have travelled on Emirates, Etihad, Kenya Airways & Ethiopian Airlines, and all airlines are perfectly safe and comfortable to travel on. Ethiopian Airliens and Kenya Airways are usually a little more basic, but cheaper as well.
How shall I book my tickets from India to South Africa?
We can either help you book your tickets via our agent, or you can book it yourself (online or offline). Before you book your flights, it’s good to have an itinerary in place because you will usually book an open jaw ticket (eg. arrive in Johannesburg and depart from Cape Town).
Is South Africa a safe holiday destination?
Most of the areas you will be visiting will very safe. There are regular police patrols and it is recommended that you stick to well-lit areas. However, South Africa, like India, has a big divide between the rich and the poor and this causes some disquiet, especially in areas like Johannesburg. We recommend keeping the same precautions that you would do in India: don’t roam around at night and be aware of your surroundings.
South Africa & India: A Long History
South Africa and India share a long, proud history, dating back to 1860, when Indian migrants first settled on the shores of Durban. This relationship was further deepened with Mahatma Gandhi’s early years in South Africa and with the end of apartheid. Today, South Africa and India have bolstered a strong relationship as members of BRICS. We hope this relationship can and will grow over the years.