Those who go to Cape Town often enjoy the city’s metropolitan vibe, nearby vineyards, lively nightlife, and closeness to outdoor activities. Yet, you may not be aware that Cape Town also serves as a convenient departure point for some of the best wildlife safari tours in the world.
Even tourists who only have a short amount of time to spend in Cape Town have the chance to partake in an incredible Big 5 African safari owing to the many day tours that depart from the “Mother City”. The following are some of the available choices for beginning your safari adventure.
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The best Cape Town Safari Tours
Price of Cape Town Safari Tours?
Expect a starting price of $1,000 per person 2 day tour, while luxury tours start at about $1,500. Safari packages from Cape Town span a wide price range, influenced by several variables. The biggest factor determining the price of a safari is the level of accommodation. This will ultimately categorize tours as being budget, mid-range or luxury and of course shared tours are usually cheaper than private tours.
This is especially the case for single travelers. On a 10 day trip or longer, you might want to consider a fly-in safari, but can be considerably more expensive than road safaris. Check out the seasons too; low-season prices can be favorable and while you’ll probably get some rain at this time, it’s when the scenery is at its best.
Tour breakdown for a Cape Town Safari
Depending on the combination of safaris selected, safari visitors have the option to see wildlife parks in one or multiple countries on a combination safari.
Cape Town Safari tours highlights
- Discover the Big Five including the lion, leopard, rhino, elephant and buffalo in nearby locations
- Scenic Road 62 is a well-known rural route in South Africa; while you’re there, you may take in its breathtaking views.
- Discover the unrivaled Kruger National Park where visitors can find over 12,000 elephants, 27,000 African Buffalo, 2,000 leopards and 2,800 lions
- Paddle a canoe in a wild lagoon when you’re visiting Wilderness National Park or at the incredible Cango Caves.
- On a guided walking safari in the bush, you can get up close and personal with the wildlife and surroundings
- Explore Africa’s best beaches with the beautiful Camps Bay Beach in Cape Town
- Private tour guide in English and other languages
- Game drives in comfortable, open top safari vehicles
- World class safari accommodation including lodges and tented camps
The following details typical tour inclusions and exclusions on the best Cape Town safari tours:
|Tour inclusions||Tour exclusions|
|Game drives per the itinerary as well as pick-up and drop-off||Visa fees, laundry services, drinks including mineral water at the hotels|
|Experienced english-speaking guide and driver||International/domestic flights|
|Transport and park entrance fees||Cultural visits to local villages (15 USD p/p)|
|Accommodation (full-board safaris)||Tips to the driver guides, waiters and porters|
|Breakfast, lunch, dinner and bottled water|
Safari essentials and information
Is a 3 – 4 day safari in Cape Town sufficient?
3 – 4 days is more than enough to experience the incredible wildlife and sights of an Africa safari. The number of days needed to properly do an Africa safari can range from 1-2 days to 1-2 weeks, depending on how much time and budget a visitor has.
Each day consists of an early morning game drive and a late afternoon game drive, certainly sufficient time to view the big 5 and incredible scenery.
On a day trip, you can even break up the drive to or from any park with an overnight stay in a park en route to your next destination such as the world famous Kruger National Park in South Africa or the unrivaled MalaMala Private Game Reserve.
Overall, 3 – 4 days is a good amount of time for a safari in the Africa safari if it is part of a larger Africa tour, but if not, allocating a few more days to your safari would be ideal where possible.
Accommodation offered on a Cape Town safari tour?
After a long day surveying the incredible South African landscape and wildlife on offer, guests can look forward to the very best safari accommodation on their Cape Town safari tour. The accommodation is excellent with numerous options from tented camps, luxury lodges to camping grounds.
From camping in the bush with amenities to mid-range and luxury lodges located inside park reserves, there’s something for everyone. On a safari, high-end lodgings are commonly used on fly-in safari packages and excellent wining and dining is very much the norm.
Many others are small designer ecolodges, often made to blend into the environment whilst others near watering holes are superb for wildlife viewing and guests can enjoy a front-row seat to spot the wildebeest and zebras crossing the river.
Animals on a Cape Town safari tour?
You’ll find just about everything on a safari near the beautiful Cape Town. The surrounding area is home to the Big Five (lion, leopard, rhino, elephant and African buffalo) and visitors will also find spotted hyenas and hippos depending on the particular country and park you visit.
The average daily schedule at reserves calls for two different safari trips, each of which lasts between two and three hours. As the animals are at their most active in the morning and late afternoon, the departure times for the two groups are staggered to take advantage of this.
In addition, there are free-roaming cheetahs, giraffes, and zebras, as well as a variety of antelope species. In addition to dawn and sunset safaris, visitors staying the night may take a guided tour of the reptilian center, which is home to more than 25 different kinds of snakes, as well as Nile crocodiles and tortoises.
What activities are a must-do after a Cape Town safari tour?
Before or after your safari in South Africa, visitors have a huge array of activities to choose from near Cape Town including driving south to visit the Cape of Good Hope (one of the southernmost points of the African Continent), the nearby beach town of Camps Bay, the vineyards of Stellenbosch and drive along Chapman’s Peak Drive.
Closer to the city, you can climb (or cable car up) the breathtaking Table Mountain, wander through the Kirstenbosch National Botanical Gardens, go shopping at the Victoria & Alfred (V&A) Waterfront or visit Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela spent 18 years during apartheid.
Which is the best safari in Cape Town?
The best safari in Cape Town is subjective and can depend upon your preferences and travel time available. Popular safaris include Inverdoorn, Aquila Private Game Reserve, Sanbona Wildlife Reserve, Gondwana GR and the Garden Route Game Lodge.
Can you do a safari from Cape Town?
Yes! You can take a half-day or full-day safari at the Aquila Private Game Reserve, located only 2 hours inland from Cape Town. Staying the night at the thatched Aquila Lodge increases your chances of spotting the Big Five (lions, leopards, rhinoceroses, elephants, and Cape buffalo).
How much is a safari from Cape Town?
Safaris from Cape Town range in price from a few hundred dollars into the thousands of dollars depending on your timeframe, accommodation, means of transportation and activities picked.