Tips South Africa

May 16


In nearly every little village you can find a supermarket. Spar – the German Discounter chain – is very visible here. International products and brands you can easily find – shopping like at home.


ATM you will find in any bigger village. Often the maximum withdrawal amount is 3’500 ZAR. The credit and debit card from DKB is basically nowhere accepted. Most shops though accept the common international credit cards.

Overnight places

Apart from the national parks, where it is not allowed to camp outside the camp sites, you can stand free – with the usual respect of course. Unfortunately a lot of the land has fences around and is therefore not suitable.


With the local MTC SIM card you have internet access almost everywhere. A prepaid card can only be bought with the verification of your home address. That works only well in the official and bigger Vodacom (respectively other telecom brands) shops.


The main roads (north/south/east/west) are paved all the rest are gravel or earth tracks. We though found the gravel roads often better than the paved ones.


All of the campsites and gasoline stations offer drinkable water, most of the times for free.


Petrol stations are well spread over the country. At least every 100km you find one. The quality of the Diesel is good, works for modern engines as well. Just make sure that you get the 50ppm diesel. Most of the time you can pay with credit card.

Our personal highlights

  1. Malealea children festival, Lesotho (great children party for adults)
  2. Cheetah in Sanbona (on foot watching her feeding a springbok, 20m distance)
  3. Wupperthal to Eselbank (for Globi not really wide enough)
  4. Golden Gate NP (gorgeous colored rock formations)
  5. Cheapman’s Drive (touristic road, which we drove in the right direction – luckily)
  6. Guestfarm Bonniedale (super charming Farm with interesting and lovely owner)
  7. Mokjabong Pass Lesotho (a pass of superlatives)
  8. Naude’s Nek Pass (highest pass of South Africa)
  9. Gorah Elephant Camp, Addo NP (luxury with style in the middle of the national park)
  10. Royal Natal NP(hiking paradise)

Border formalities

It’s not a big problem to get 3 month visa at the border. But it’s important to clearly state that you want a 3 month visa and to control it. Theoretically you can only apply for a new visa after 12 months when the old visa is expired. If you come back within that time from overseas you get without a problem a new visa. Other traveller told us, that this rule is not always applied completely strict. The retirement visa is valid for 4 years, but you can only apply for it in your home country. The procedure is quite complicated.
The carnet de passage is hardly be filled out and stamped voluntarily. It seems that the customs officers are not yet trained well on that matter. Nevertheless, most of the time they are very friendly and put a stamp where we would like it to be. It took us never longer than 45 min to cross boarders.

Our Stats

Daily expenses for 2 people:
Food               CHF 17.37
Alcohol           CHF 2.58
HH-Nonfood  CHF 7.56
Clothes           CHF 1.35
Trips               CHF 5.71
Restaurant      CHF 12.01
Internet/Tel    CHF 3.59
Fees                CHF 0.77
Hygiene          CHF 0.03
Diesel             CHF 0.78 per liter

Important Observations

The country seems to develop backwards. Because of the actual political situation a lot of experienced and well educated South Africans leave their country.