Self-Drive Holidays

Personally experience the sights and sounds of Southern Africa, but particularly South Africa and Namibia, up close and individually, by self-driving yourself around.

Often perceived as more daunting than in reality, driving in Southern Africa is no more formidable than navigating the highways and bi-ways of any other continent. Road networks are extensive, the popular routes well-tarred and maintained, and signage is in English – plentiful and of a high standard. In addition, the majority of the population understand and speak English, and are able to provide assistance and direction should you perchance drift off your intended route.

Should you be independent travellers keen to explore Southern Africa at your own pace, a self-drive vacation may very well be the ideal holiday for you. Self driving allows wonderful freedom of movement; languidly marvel at magnificent scenery, unhurriedly traverse meandering mountain passes,

linger a little longer gazing at particularly breath-taking landscapes, pause to photograph an exceptionally dramatic vista, or enjoy an especially quirky roadside attraction, no one is going hurry you along.

Should you wish to slowly relish a theatrical panorama, or savour the vivid African countryside, should you wish to leisurely delight in a little friendly South African hospitality, no one is going to judge. Enjoy the majestic views, chat to the locals, take a detour, choose the side roads untraveled, set your own speed, be your own boss.

Magical Cape Town, the mystical Cape Winelands, and the fabled Garden Route, along with the sub-tropical coastline of the enchanting Kwazulu-Natal province of South Africa are ideal self-drive options for holiday-makers. There is also huge potential for an idyllic self-drive safari holiday, where guests can intimately view wilderness and wildlife, and track Africa’s Big 5 in the best game reserves of both South Africa and Namibia.

We recommend the routes, things to see and do along the way, and highlights not to miss. We provide the maps and information and we book the most charming accommodations for you along our recommended routes. You fly in, collect your pre-booked vehicle, and off your go exploring indomitable Africa at your personal pace. It really couldn’t be easier.

Our expert African safari team will gladly advise you on the ideal self-drive option to suit your particular requirements. Contact Southern Destinations for specialist assistance and input.

Table Mountain from Table Bay


Spend 5 blissful days a stone’s throw from the sandy, unspoilt beach in Plettenberg Bay, South Africa’s prettiest seaside town in the heart of the beautiful Garden Route. A scenic self-drive takes you down the Garden Route to Cape Town for 4 days at a trendy boutique guesthouse within walking distance of  fashionable restaurants and bars and views of famous Table Mountain and the harbour. After exploring the environs of Cape Town, Cape Point and her Winelands, fly to the Timbavati Game Reserve in the Kruger Park region for 2 days on a Big Five safari.

Cape Town Aerial view


Spend 4 nights in stunning Cape Town at the ideally located Radisson Blu Hotel, perched on the Atlantic Seaboard rocks within walking distance of the V&A Waterfront. Explore Cape Town and surrounds. It’s a scenic coastal drive to Hermanus (via an optional Shark Cage Diving excursion!), for 2 nights at Abalone Guest Lodge, overlooking the bay. Hermanus is famous for whale watching (June – Nov) and has great beaches. From sea to safari – your next 2 nights are at Shamwari Private Game Reserve in the Eastern Cape for close encounters with Africa’s Big Five.

mala mala


Spend 5 nights on a Big Five safari at Mala Mala in the Sabi Sands. Overnight in Johannesburg before flying to the town of George along the Garden Route. Collect your hire car and drive yourselves to the seaside town of Plettenberg Bay where you will be spending the next 2 nights.  Your self-drive journey then takes you to Knysna for 2 nights before heading to the quaint town of Swellendam for an overnight stay. The final leg of your stay leads you to the Franschhoek Winelands for 3 nights, where wine tasting and good cuisine are in abundance.