South Africa – a Land For All Seasons

Imagine relaxing in the sun on a South African beach while the folks back at home are enduring all the discomforts of winter. Because South Africa is in the southern hemisphere, its seasons are the opposite of the northern hemisphere. The summers are generally balmy, and in the winter months the temperatures seldom dip to the lows of northwestern Europe or North America. Only occasionally does snow fall. When you plan your holiday in this country which has so many diverse attractions be sure to time it with the season that will be most suitable to your needs and budget.

When Beaches Beckon

The peak tourist season in South Africa is from the first week of November to the last week of March. That is when the temperatures reach the 80s F (high 20s C) in centres like Cape Town and Johannesburg, and slightly lower in Kruger National Park. It is during this period that tourists flock to the long stretches of sandy beaches to swim in sun-warmed water, and enjoy boating, surfing, wind surfing, and other aquatic recreational activities. South African residents join the rush during their summer vacation period, from December 1 to January 15, and during the two weeks surrounding Easter. You will always find plenty of room to spread your blanket on the beach, but at this time of year the hotels and resorts tend to fill up quickly, so it’s a good idea to book your accommodations well in advance.

Escape the Crowds

The most popular time to visit South Africa is from November through January, as that is when large numbers of tourists take seasonal holidays. But the very best weather settles in during February and lasts through March. Book your holiday for this period, and you can avoid the worst of the South African summer rush. To get an even better jump on the crowds, as well as an opportunity for bargain rates, you might want to consider taking your holiday during the “shoulder months” of autumn or spring. October and April can be great times to visit South Africa.

The Secret Season

The South African winter, which lasts from May to August, has very unpredictable weather. It can be cold and rainy one day, and gloriously warm and sunny the next. Veteran South African tourists call this the Secret Season. They know from experience that if they come here for a week or two at this time of year, they are going to enjoy at least a few unforgettable days of splendid weather. The bonus is that hotel and resort rooms can be had at bargain rates. When you are planning your Secret Season holiday in South Africa, keep in mind that the country has school holidays in July and August.

Seeing the Animals

The hot summer months of South Africa are excellent for beach culture, but they are not the best time for going on safari. At this time of year the animals are hidden by long grass, and they do not tend to gather at watering holes. Visitors will have a much better opportunity of seeing South Africa’s exotic wildlife after the rains of April. The weather might be humid, but for wildlife lovers this is the best time to see animals in their own element. Whatever time of year you choose, South Africa will have something special for you.

Author Bio: Rachel Hill is a Southern Africa Travel specialist, a company specialising in luxury, tailor-made South Africa holidays, as well as holidays to other destinations in Southern Africa. Our experienced consultants will help you design your very own luxury holiday, and will be happy to provide you with a free quote.

Category: Travel
Keywords: South Africa

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