South Africa is a vast country, with a mix of desert, tropical coastlines, temperate woodlands, and snow-capped mountains. This site is owned by Apa Digital AG, Bahnhofplatz 6, 8854 Siebnen, Events include shucking contests, eating challenges, and even a marathon. In Cape Town and the Garden Route coastal belt, summers tend to be warm, mild and unpredictable. Temperatures drop dramatically during the winter, with many of the higher trails coated in ice and snow. Month-long comedy festival at the Baxter Theatre, beginning in mid-July and attracting both local and international names. South Africa’s midsummer is December and January, when resorts in popular tourist destinations are often booked up months in advance. Here are some festivals and events to consider when deciding when to visit South Africa: Series of LGBTQ-themed events over a week, kicking off with a pageant at which Mr and Miss Cape Town are crowned, and taking in a bunch of parties and a street parade. Crime and personal safety tips South Africa, Getting around South Africa: Transportation Tips, Travel Tips South Africa for planning and on the go. Welcome! At this time of year, there is less foliage on the trees, making it easier to spot animals in the bush. AfrikaBurn is a unique event not unlike Burning Man in the U.S. Held in late April, the incredible week-long event takes place in Ceres, near the Tankwa Karoo National Park. For most travellers the best time to visit South Africa is influenced by the weather and seasons... but often is specific factors ranging from wildlife to sunsets and winelands to wild flowers. When is the best time to visit South Africa? Cape Town is undoubtedly a year-round destination, with each season bringing its fair share of unique benefits. Switzerland. In general, high temperatures range from around 80 degrees Fahrenheit in the summer to 60 degrees Fahrenheit in the winter. The Cape Town International Jazz Festival, southern Africa's biggest jazz festival, is held each April. Top Tip! Spring is when the peak wildflower bloom and whale migrations take place. There isn’t one, but many best times to visit South Africa. The most picturesque route in South Africa is filled with vibrant fauna and flora, and runs between the ocean and mountain ranges. May through September is typically the drier season, covering winter and a shorter spring season, and making it ideal for game drives and other outdoor activities. The ideal time to visit South Africa depends on what you want to do, but the months of best weather in South Africa is between April – May, September – October, when the temperature is really pleasant, and perfect for outdoor activities. Midwinter in the southern hemisphere is in June and July, when temperatures can drop below zero in some places. November sees the start of the rain in the Kruger and KwaZulu Natal, often followed by spectacular afternoon thunderstorms. The best time of year to visit South Africa is also influenced by your interests. This is when to visit South Africa’s arid areas such as the Karoo, before the heat becomes unbearable. The temperatures are also much cooler than the sticky, hot summer. Wondering when the best time of the year would be to see wildlife and avoid the hottest seasons? June to August is the best time of year to visit South Africa for wildlife-watching. Be warned though: If you're headed north to KwaZulu-Natal or Zululand, summer also means frequent thunderstorms and high humidity. Every year, the arrival of spring sparks the start of an incredible natural phenomenon in the Northern Cape. It can be rainy from November to February, but this is the best time to travel for … That said, the summer months (November to April) are often cheaper, the lush vegetation is spectacular, and baby animals can make an appearance. It is also hot in Kruger and KwaZulu Natal, but sunny spells are often broken by tropical storms. Fall is one of the best times to visit South Africa. Safari-goers are best travelling to South Africa in the cooler winter months (May to September), when game-viewing conditions are superb. The Winelands of Franschhoek, Paarl, and Stellenbosch are extraordinarily beautiful in fall when the weather is cooler, and the trees start to change color, and the season is also optimal for hiking throughout the country. The best time for an African safari is typically from July through October, when the animals are easy to find and in substantial numbers. If you're traveling on a budget, avoid the rush of high summer, when accommodation and activities are at their most expensive across the much of the country. September and October are the best months to visit South Africa for whale-watching, when the majestic mammals migrate from Antarctica to the warm waters off South Africa; the best spots are Hermanus and Plettenberg Bay. During the first half of September, more than 10,000 Zulu maidens in traditional dress head toward Zulu king’s KwaNyokeni Palace in KwaZulu-Natal Province as part of a four-day procession. The 11-day-long festival includes theatrical dramas, opera, street entertainers, and visual art. Weather-wise, the optimum time for hiking is during the fall (April to May), when you can expect warm, dry days and cool nights. However, its considerably lower altitude results in far greater extremes of temperature. East Africa (Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda and Uganda) is at it’s best in their winter months of mid-June to October when the parks are dry, the weather sunny and the wildlife excellent. By using Tripsavvy, you accept our, Your Trip to South Africa: The Complete Guide. Garden Route . However, it usually starts in the far north in late July or early August, moving slowly south until it fades in September. It is still warm in much of the country, plus you have the highest chance of seeing breaching whales and wildlife with their young. The climate is seasonal, although as the transitional seasons of spring and autumn tend to be very short, the year … South Africa is on the whole a dry, sunny country. Be aware, though, that this time of year coincides with the busiest period for tourism in South Africa and you'll need to book accommodations and game drives in advance. In common with the Lesotho highlands, the province’s Drakensberg range has misty days in summer and mountain snow in winter. If you’re trying to decide when to go on safari in South Africa, the game-viewing conditions are excellent in the cooler winter months (May to September). your username. This is an excellent season for bird-watching, and even then, rains are often quick showers that are unlikely to affect your trip. September and October are on the whole sunny, with temperatures rising as the year goes on. The grass is low, visibility is better and the dry conditions mean you'll find more wildlife congregating around the watering holes. The best time to visit South Africa to go on safari is the dry season, from May to October. Because of this, climates can vary. Generally, South Africa’s summer lasts from about December to March before winter takes over from June to August. Combine a safari with a food and wine holiday in Cape Town to enjoy its fireside-friendly, rainy winter days. For keen birders, the rules are reversed. Answer 1 of 5: Hi, We are thinking of visiting South Africa in mid September to early October. We are looking for hot sunny weather. When is the best time of year to travel to South Africa? Hopefield Fynbos Show takes place every August and September, celebrating this dramatic flower with food stalls, tractor races, and more. Chilly evenings creep in from May, though days remain warm and dry, and the summer hordes have usually dissipated. In the north, the desert winters are chilly and the summers hot - spring and autumn are much more pleasant. If you love oysters, don't miss the Knysna Oyster Festival, held every July in Knysna. Reserve a room at least a few months before your travel dates, possibly more if you’re heading to Cape Town and the Garden Route. No elements found. Three-day celebration of books, writers and wine in the Winelands food capital, featuring leading local and international writers, editors and cartoonists. July is the start of the whale-spotting season, though the weather can be a dampener on your holiday – drizzly and cool. If sunbathing is your top priority, then summer (November to January) is undoubtedly the hottest time of year. South Africa is a predominantly sunny country, with year-round travel possible thanks to its vast size and diverse range of landscapes and attractions. Be aware, though, that this time of year coincides with the busiest period for tourism in South Africa and you'll need to book accommodations and game drives in advance. The west is wonderful in the summer months (November to April), while the eastern flank of the country is better suited to the cooler months (May to October). Final Thoughts on the Best Time to go to South Africa . The best times to visit Johannesburg are from March to May and September to November. However, June to August is Sardine Run season, offering the opportunity to witness one of the underwater world's most significant natural events. From June to October, humpbacks and southern right whales can be seen passing close to shore on their annual migration to the breeding grounds off Mozambique. The Best Time to Visit Busan, South Korea, Weather in Africa: Climate, Seasons, and Average Monthly Temperature, Tripsavvy uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience. ... and November to April is the best time if you intend to spend some time on the beach. In-depth, easy-to-use travel guides filled with expert advice. Consider changing the search query. Answer 1 of 3: Hi We are planning to visit South Africa, Zimbabwe and Botswana to see the sights and particularly to do 2 or 3 safaris. This is also the ideal season to head out on safari. Dry weather also means better road conditions for self-drive safaris at parks like Addo and Mkhuze, while the chill keeps mosquitoes at bay (a major plus for safaris in malarial areas of South Africa). Is this the best time to visit or is later in the year better? Get the latest coronavirus (COVID-19) updates for South Africa with current travel advice, statistics and online resources.. Below is the hottest it usually gets at popular destinations in South Africa.Select a destination to see the best time to … July to September is also a great time for whale watching along Cape Town's Whale Coast. Best Time to Visit South Africa South Africa is a large and diverse country with a climate that varies from region to region. All this will help you to work out when is the best time to visit South Africa. You will witness pleasant sunny days or sunshine for at least 11 hours a day. Johannesburg and Pretoria lie on the highveld plateau and have a near-perfect climate. South Africa's Big Three: Kruger, Zululand and Swaziland, Complete Cape Town: Wildlife, Wine and Whales, South Africa: Cape Peninsula to Victoria Falls, Road trip South Africa: 5 of the best routes, Plan your tailor-made trip with a local expert, Travel stress-free with local assistance and 24/7 support. Rough Guides® is a trademark owned by Apa Group with its headquarters at Best time to visit South Africa for Safaris The best months for viewing wildlife are June, July and August. The best time to travel to South Africa depends on which parts of the country you want to visit and your interests. The National Arts Festival takes place in July in Grahamstown. The high season in South Africa is … Travel South Africa. We look at detailed weather patterns and suggest how these might affect any sightseeing plans, getting around, outdoor activities, and festivals taking place throughout the year. Picture: Taryn Elliott/Pexels. At the other end of the spectrum, midsummer is during December and January, when the country shuts down for its annual holiday and popular coastal and inland resorts quickly fill up. In general, the country boasts great temperatures all year-round, without any excessive coldness. The Swartland Heritage Festival takes place in November, celebrating more than 20 different wine producers and food from the region. December through February are very hot (the equivalent of summer for the Northern Hemisphere) and can be crowded since schools are on holiday. In the southernmost part of the country, summers are the driest time of year. Performances include stage dance, concerts, and more, performed by both local and international talents. The temperatures are also much cooler than the sticky, hot summer. August is also the beginning of the sports season, with the opportunity to potentially watch South Africa play an international football, cricket or rugby game on their home ground. 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