South Africa is a wonderful vacation destination, and with its great outdoors, fabulous nature, and wonderful weather, it is a holiday paradise for children and families. There are simply hundreds of great outings to take the kids, but we will look at just five of them.
Starting in Durban, no child will be content without a visit to the Ushaka Marine World. This is a total paradise for children, and aside from the fun side of the day, it is also educational in that the children get to experience marine nature at very close hand. First off is the fabulous aquarium, one of the largest in the world, and it is set in a stunning upturned, sunken ship. The mood is truly nautical, and the array of sea life on display is awesome. Ushaka also has regular dolphin shows that are thrilling to watch as the dolphins leap out of the water, as well as the seal show, which is great for the children. Probably most fun of all though are the water rides in large rubber tubes along a spectacular waterway. The high water slides are also popular.
Every child wants to see an elephant or a lion, and South Africa has the best place of all to experience this – the Kruger National Park for the experience of a lifetime. Accommodation is modern and very comfortable, and restaurants abound. A game drive in an open safari vehicle is the best way to see the animals, and great views of elephants and giraffes are guaranteed, while lion and leopard will be seen with patience. The birdlife is also awesome, and there are many other natural attractions for the children, including insects and reptiles, which will greatly enhance their appreciation and respect for nature.
The Oudtshoorn area in the Western Cape is a great place to take the children on holiday as you have the incredible experience of the ostrich farms in the area. In fact, it is the ostrich capital of the world. A ride on one of these giant birds will be an experience never to forget, and a lot can be learned here about farming and nature. Nearby are the spectacular Cango Caves, which make for an experience no child will ever forget, as children can venture into this wonderland of colours and shapes, deep in the belly of the earth. There are fantastic shapes of stalactites, which hang from the ceiling, and stalagmites, which rise up from the floor – figures to truly touch the imagination of the child.
From a cultural perspective, there are township tours, which are enlightening for children and offer a glimpse of the social and economic diversity of South Africa. These are very educational in offering a child a better perspective on life in South Africa. If you’re in KZN, you could also take the children to Shakaland or Simunye, for a traditional Zulu cultural experience.
Finally, there are South Africa’s beaches, and the warm, wide, sweeping beaches of the lower south coast are very popular for children. Aside from the beach, swimming, rock pools, and sandcastles, there are also paddle boats up the lagoons and a range of children’s activities, including beauty competitions, volleyball, touch rugby, bungee swings, and more. For children, South Africa is really a holiday paradise.