Cape Town is a little piece of heaven sitting along the coast of South Africa. This city is often referred to as the Mother City. Popularly known for its vibrant culture, rich history, and delicious local cuisine, Cape Town is a favourite amongst locals and tourists alike.
There are many things to do in Cape Town. But one must-do activity is the incredible safaris not far away. In this article, we will highlight some of the best Cape Town safaris. Spot plenty of wild animals, including the Big Five, and get the full South African experience.
Why you Should Visit a Safari in Cape Town
Safari tours allow you to explore the bushy land of South Africa and observe beautiful animals in their natural habitat. There are many different wild animals that you may see on a game drive, but the most famous animals are the Big Five. This includes the lion, black rhinoceros, leopard, Cape buffalo, and African elephant. Being able to see one of these iconic animals in the wild is a sight like no other.
This will give you a newfound appreciation, both for these magnificent animals and South Africa’s beauty. When visiting Cape Town, you can plan to stay at a private game lodge which gives you a greater chance to observe the Big Five and so much more. However, if you have already booked accommodation elsewhere, a safari day tour is a good option, too.
3 Must-See Safari near Cape Town
If you are visiting South Africa for the first time, consider staying at a private game reserve near Cape Town to get the whole safari experience. Surrounding the city, there are many places to choose from. Here are the 3 of the best safari accommodations near Cape Town to help make the search easier for you.
1. Sanbona Wildlife Reserve
Located in the Western Cape, just a 3 and half hour drive from Cape Town, is the beautiful Sanbona Wildlife Reserve. This reserve offers a lovely selection of luxury safari accommodation options.
You can either stay in one of the three beautiful lodges or have a more authentic safari experience by staying in their Explorer Camp. Wherever you decide to stay, you will enjoy the views of the natural landscape of the Little Karoo.
Sanbona’s game drives are about 3 hours long and can either be done during the hours of sunrise or sunset. The game drives are conducted by an experienced ranger who will guide you along with your exploration of the Karoo while trying to spot members of the Big Five and other wildlife. Sanbona Wildlife Reserve is also home to white lions, so if you’re lucky, you may even see this rare animal in its unspoiled habitat.
2. Gondwana Game Reserve
Just four hours away from Cape Town is the beautiful Gondwana Game Reserve. While this may seem like a far drive, it will be worth it once you arrive and take in the beautiful scenery. This luxurious game reserve has a wide selection of accommodation options available, from the Tented Eco-Camps to the stunning Kwena Lodge.
Game drives are included in the accommodation packages when you stay at the reserve. These drives can either be done in the morning or afternoon and are around 3 hours long. What’s unique about Gondwana Game Reserve is that it is home to a few rare animals, including the endangered Cape Mountain Zebra.
3. Grootbos Private Nature Reserve
While South Africa may be most famously known for its exotic land animals, it also has a wide range of marine wildlife. If you are looking for an unforgettable marine safari experience, this five-star private nature reserve may be your next perfect destination. Only a 2 hour drive away from Cape Town, the luxurious nature reserve is famous for its marine safari. This experience involves getting a close look at the marine Big Five, including Great White sharks, whales, Cape fur seals, dolphins, and penguins.
Grootbos Private Nature Reserve offers three different accommodation options, namely the Forest Lodge, Garden Lodge, and for a more luxurious experience, the Private Luxurious Villas. The reserve is filled with adventures, including horseback riding, botanical tours, whale watching, and even shark cage diving.
South African Safaris Day Tours Near Cape Town
If you do not plan on staying at a game lodge but would still like to experience an epic safari, check out these safari day tours near Cape Town.
1. Aquila Private Game Reserve
Aquila Private Game Reserve is one of the nearest game reserves to Cape Town, with a drive just under 2 hours. This game reserve is a great option if you plan to do a safari day tour because the drive won’t be too long. This is one of the best game reserves for day visitors as there are half-day and full-day safari packages to choose from.
Aquila Private Game Reserve is home to an abundance of animals, including hippos, giraffes, and more. During your safari, you will be able to explore the vast landscape while trying to spot the various wildlife.
2. Inverdoorn Private Game Reserve
This game reserve is only a 2 and a half-hour drive from Cape Town, which is perfect if you are planning to just visit for the day. Day visitors will be able to enjoy a 3-hour game drive exploring the beautiful and vast South African landscape.
Final Thoughts on South African Safaris near Cape Town
Whether you are a tourist in South Africa or you have lived here your whole life, experiencing a safari is simply a must. With beautiful and luxurious lodges near Cape Town to choose from, who wouldn’t want to include a safari in their next vacation?