It is undeniable that South Africa has some of the best climates in the world, we pride ourselves with warm sunny days and cool nights - suitable for beach days which turn to fun nights out on the town.
Camping season is open and what better way to enjoy it than under the African sky.
The holidays are here and everyone is searching for a destination where they can enjoy some downtime, the coastline is the popular choice and we understand why but if you really want to go off the grid...like really far away a rustic escape is the way to go.
There is a wide selection of incredible camping spots across Mzansi, whether you want to pitch your tent along the Garden Route or on the West Coast.
- Tietiesbaai Beach Camp, West Coast
Not all camping experiences are in the bush. Tietiesbaai Beach Camp-located in the Cape Colombine Nature Reserve is for the rough camper who also wants to be close to the sea, there are 60 camping sites available from grass to ground, tent or caravan. If you are looking for convenience set up near the ablutions or escape the crowd and nestle among the rocks.
The scenery will blow you away but so will the wind if your tents are not sturdy. You can enjoy other activities such as hiking, angling, bird-watching, diving, kayaking.
- Miller’s Point Caravan Park, Simon’s Town
Miller's Point Reserve is located just 5km south of the lovely Simon's Town. Wherever you are camping you can enjoy the amazing views of the ocean, the site itself is nestled between boulders, creating a sense of privacy. Just down the road lies Cape Point and you can view the penguin colony by the beach.
READ: Mahai, Gariep or Augrabies: 7 Last-minute camping spots to check out across SA
Relax on the lush green lawns of the campsite. The rooibos and citrus farm makes for a great leisurely experience, with plenty of activities if you get tired of doing nothing-if that's even a thing. You can take a stroll through the farm or explore the area on a bicycle if you are looking to cool down, take a refreshing swim in the dam during the day and catch your dinner at the same spot.
Braai facilities are available for campers and the restaurant is open during peak-season or through a booking.
Electricity: You bet!
- Mvubu Campsite, Addo Elephant National Park
You can explore the National Park through hikes and self-drives or you can really immerse yourself in the experience and camp near the riverbank. The small campsite is ideal for some quality time with your family. You can relax in the river and enjoy quiet evenings in the bush, you might even spot a roaming animal.
Be sure to bring out the 4x4 so you can access the site. There are braai facilities available, all you need is to bring your own drinking water.
Electricity: There is no electricity but you can enjoy a hot shower at the camp.
READ: 8 Family-friendly camping spots to check out for a fun bushwhacking experience
- Kudu Kaya Campsite, Baviaanskloof
Ever wondered how Snow White felt living in the middle of giant trees? Well now you can pretend you are a Disney princess at Kudu Kaya campsite - the camping area is situated between the indigenous forest, each stand is tucked away providing loads of privacy. The mountains nearby are suitable for hiking but you might not want to sweat while you are on vacation, enjoy the cool waters of the rock pool.
Bring your own grid to enjoy the braai facilities, whether you prefer to pitch on ground or the grass, you will have a memorable time nonetheless. If you ask nicely the owners will gladly show you around the potato and tobacco farm.
- Karnmelkspruit River Resort, Lady Grey
From the forest to deep within the Maluti Mountains. This small and intimate campsite is taking it back to basics with its simple but functional facilities. Nature lovers and anyone seeking some country fun will have a blast but why wouldn't you when the crystal clear Karnmelkspruit river runs right past the camp.Nearby activities include fly fishing for R100 per rod, hiking and exploring the old railway tunnel.
Electricity: Electricity is only available at the central ablution block.
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- Kambro Campsite and Farm Stall, Britstown
With no city lights for over 200km, every night at this camping site will feel magical. Enjoy the silence of the Karoo at Kambro Accommodation and Farm Stall. The venue has six campsites that offer amazing facilities such as a private braai, lights and a farm stall with a selection of fresh-baked goodies and preserves.
If you want to salivate on the meals offered at the camp be sure to book in advance, beer and wine are also available at the farm.
Electricity: Lights and electricity are offered
- Augrabies Rest Camp, Augrabies Falls National Park
Of course the famous national park would make it onto the list. Part of the camping experience includes admiring the majestic Augrabies Falls, as for what you can expect at the site, laundry facilities, communal ablutions and a kitchen will be available. Enjoy other activities like self-game drives, hiking and mountain biking.
Electricity: All stands have electricity.
- Coastal Camp Sites, Namaqua National Park
The Namaqua National Park spoils visitors with nine camping spots spread out along the west coast shoreline that are special in their own way, don't ask us to pick the best spot. If you are not travelling with a bakkie, your choices will be limited to the two southern campsites.
Visit around the wildflower season and enjoy the breathtaking scenery. You are required to bring your own utilities like a braai grid and drinking water.
Electricity: Nope, enjoy the outdoors.
- Scottburgh Caravan Park, Umdoni Coast
The Scottburgh Caravan Park is nicknamed "The one on the beach" and you will understand why as soon as you ascend on the sandy camping area. The park is a walk away from the beach featuring activities like water slides. This is the most ideal family getaway, there are various activities suitable for all age groups around the area.
Laundry facilities are available and the resort shop sells basic supplies in case you left your toothbrush standing comfortable in its holder.
- Scotia Camp, Somkhanda Game Reserve
Scotia Camp is a single, private campsite in a secluded part of the game reserve, sounds very intimate right. Perfect for first-time campers - Somkhanda provides a fully equipped mobile safari camp for an extra fee. This includes a kitchen tent, a gas fridge and a two-plate cooker, its like glamping but for far less. All guests have access to hot showers and toilet facilities.
- Cobham Campsite, Southern Drakensberg
Enjoy a traditional camping experience with open fields and an option to pitch your tent wherever you want. Inhale the fresh air and revel in the beauty of the Drakensberg, there are plenty of hiking trails for you to enjoy. If you don't feel like you are far enough from civilisation, spend a night in one of the caves.
Electricity: No electricity but hot showers are available.
- Berg en-Dal, Kruger National Park
Nobody needs convincing to spend a night in the Kruger National Park. You get a glimpse of the hills and the Kruger landscape from the campsite. Cooking and braai facilities are available.
- Numbi Caravan Park, Hazyview
Enjoy a safe and secure camping experience with 24-hour security. The camp is central to all of the attractions in Mpumalanga like the Reptile Park and God's window, there is plenty to get up to when you are not relaxing by the pool. The 23 grass sites each have braai facilities, lights and refurbished ablution facilities.
Electricity: Yes, there are power points available.
READ: Mzansi-tastic campsites that beat the changing season
Right on the banks of the Sabie River, fall asleep to the sounds of the flowing water and the stars illuminating your caravan. The heated rock pool or the cold water rim pool on the deck will help you cool down when it feels like the Kruger sun is cooking you alive.
Keep your little ones entertained at the kid's play park and the putt-putt while you enjoy the fishing facilities.The camp offers electrical appliances and communal kitchens. Be sure to bring your own cooking utensils, crockery and cutlery.
Electricity: Not only is there electricity, you can surf the net on the free Wifi available.
For the glampers
If your idea of fun does not include slugging a huge tent and having to put your entire kitchen in your car, you can enjoy the serenity of nature more luxuriously at these glamping sites and all you have to carry is your luggage.
Old Mac Daddy provides campers with the ultimate luxury experience. Their tents are tucked away in the mountains far away from the main hub. The interior of these hideaways is breathtaking with its mini-bar, coffee Station, air-conditioning & heating unit, a bathroom with shower Queen/king size bed with white cotton linen but its the view of the stars at night that will really leave you in awe. You have to be willing to part with a reasonable amount of money to enjoy this hotel in the wild.
Saseka is the Tsonga word for beautiful and that's all we have to say about this newest lodge situated in Thornybush Nature Reserve. Between guests getting the full view of the riverbed to the wild animals that casually stroll by, this tented camp really combines nature with the luxuries of the city. Each luxury tent has its own private pool and deck or visitors can relax around the bar area but the highlight of a Saseka stay is dining on the riverbed.
READ: Meet Saseka: South Africa’s beautiful tented camp
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