South Africa’s Best Camp Sites

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South Africa is full of gorgeous camping spots – deciding where to go for your next Caravan  holiday can get a little overwhelming. Here we have found one article  from getaway website to help you choose your next destination.

Campsites in Gauteng

1. Magalies Sleepy River Campsite, Magaliesberg

Camp on the banks of the peaceful Magalies River in between shady indigenous vegetation. The campsite can by found only 60 minutes fromJohannesburg and 30 minutes from Krugersdorp.

Things to do: When you’re not swimming in the river or the pool, having a braai or playing games on the expansive, shaded lawns, you can head out for a bit of horse riding, mountain biking or hiking in the surrounding area.
Ground cover: Grass
Shade:  Plenty of trees
Ablution & facilities:  Shared ablution blocks with toilets, showers and hot water as well as a shared braai area. The campsite also has electricity points.
Price:  R100 per stand per night, plus R60 per adult. R30 for a child a night.
Contact:  082 555 9681,  www.magaliessleepyriver.co.za

2. Dinokeng Waterfront Estate, Kameeldrift

Situated on the South Eastern side of the Roodeplaat Dam, Dinokeng Waterfront Estate is a mere 15 minutes’ drive from Pretoria and ideal for keen fishermen.

Things to do: Theo, the manager, has been catching fish at this end of the dam for 41 years, so he’ll be happy to join you on a grand day of fishing. Those who don’t fish can enjoy picnics, canoeing, mountain biking (bring own bikes), game viewing in Roodeplaat Nature Reserve and horseback rides (book two weeks in advance).
Ground cover: Grass
Shade: Trees and lapas at an extra cost.
Ablution & facilities: Each campsite has an electricity point and the ablution block is shared.
Price: R120 per person per night.
Contact: 012 711 4391, www.dinokengbig5.com

3. Mountain Sanctuary Park, Rustenburg

Mountain Sanctuary Park is perched in the mountainous Magaliesberg area, with views of surrounding farmland and the nearby Buffelspoort Dam. The 1000-hectare property, which has been open to the public for 37 years, is renowned for its hiking trails and is a popular day-visit destination for nature-hungry Gautengers needing fresh air.
Things to do: There’s a set of natural pools jsut a 20-minute walk away, and the waters flow generously after summer rains. There’s also a well-kept pool and grassy picnic area with a viewing deck.
Ground cover: Grass
Shade: Some trees
Ablution & facilities: Some campsites have electricity points, but this needs to be requested on booking. Ablution facilities are shared, and each stand comes with a braai and grid. There are also cabins for an affordable alternative to camping.
Price: From R80 per adult per night
Contact: 014 534 0114, www.mountain-sanctuary.co.za

Campsites in the Western Cape

4. The Beach Camp, Cape Columbine Nature Reserve

When you get to stay in a rustic A-frame tent, only a few meters away from the sea and removed from towns and cities, then it’s easy to fall in love with the West Coast. Enjoy a peaceful stay in the Cape Columbine Nature Reserve and dare to take a dip in the icy Atlantic Waters.

Things to do: Mountain biking and horse riding through the reserve, walking between the spring flowers (in season), kayaking on the sea or simply lazing on a hammock.
Ground cover: Ground
Shade: None except in the communal areas
Ablution & facilities: Communal kitchen and bar and a communal fire place to braai. Hot water, but no electricity. Shared ablutions.
Price: From R326 a person a night sharing (A-frame) self-catering
Contact: 082 926 2267, www.beachcamp.co.za

5. Tietiesbaai, Cape Columbine Nature Reserve, West Coast

Even though you’ll find the coldest water for miles here, the West Coast will always be a popular destination for many South Africans in summer. Tietiesbaai is particularly special with its rocky coastline and incredible sunsets across the ocean. This is perfect for experienced campers who enjoy a more basic camping experience.

Things to do: Days are easily filled hiking along the coastline or visiting the pretty fishermen’s town of Paternoster. You can also try your hand at fishing or dare the icy waters for a swim in the Atlantic Ocean.
Ground cover: Grass and ground
Shade: Bring your own gazebo
Ablution & facilities: Shared ablutions with cold showers and no electricity. You need to bring along your own braai.
Price: R116 a night for six people
Contact: 022 752 2718, www.saldanhabay.co.za

6. Plettenberg Forever Resorts, Plettenberg Bay

Enjoy the peace and quiet of the Garden Route without having to deal withPlettenberg Bay’s crazy summer crowd. Situated on the western bank of the Keurbooms River, slightly back from the N2, you can’t even see the town from where you camp.

Things to do: All Garden Route activities are close-by. Choose from paddling, putt-putt, skiing, hiking, swimming, fishing and even playing tennis
Ground cover: Grass
Shade: Massive stinkwood and yellowwood trees for shade, but not at all the campsites
Ablution & facilities: Large, shared ablution blocks. All sites have braai facilities and electricity.
Price: From R670 per site per day, maximum four people.
Contact: 044 535 9309, www.foreverplettenberg.co.za

7. River Goose, Eureka Farm, Bonnievale

Experience the peaceful beauty of the Breede River at these riverside camping grounds. Sitauted a short drive from Bonnievale, you’ll be close enough to the nearby towns to go exploring, or you can merely spend your days relaxing in, or beside, the river.

Things to do: Days at River Goose are characterised with swimming and lounging beside the river or jumping in a canoe and paddling along the banks. If you’re keen for a short drive, you can visit Marloth Nature Reserve, just outside Swellendam.
Ground cover: Grass
Shade: Plenty of trees
Ablution & facilities: Shared ablution blocks with toilets, showers and hot water as well as a shared braai area.
Price: R90 per person per night (R110 per person per night over December-January.)
Contact: 082 759 5727, www.rivergoosecampsite.co.za

8. Driehoek Farm, Cederberg

Situated at the foot of Tafelberg, 20km from Algeria, Driehoek Farm is well forested for the region, making it perfect for summer camping excursions in the Cederberg.

Things to do: The farm is the ideal base from which to hike the surroundings mountains and peaks and there are many great pools to swim in. You can also entertain yourself with hiking, horseback riding, cycling and fishing.
Ground cover: Grass
Shade: Plenty of trees
Ablution & facilities: Shared ablutions blocks with electricity points. Selected campsites also have their own electricity points, but they are slightly more expensive. There is no cellphone reception.
Price: R210 per site, maximum four people.
Contact: 027 482 2828, www.cederberg-accommodation.co.za

9. Nature’s Valley Rest Camp, Garden Route

Situated in the Tsitsikamma section of the Garden Route National Park, this rest camp is on the banks of the beautiful Groot River. Nature’s Valley is a secluded little village, with its incredible forests and close proximity to the sea, is ideal for a tranquil nature retreat.

Things to do: There are many day trails to choose from if you’re in the mood for a beautiful hike. The area also hosts prolific birdlife and you can spot the local inhabitants while you canoe from the rest camp to the Groot River mouth where you can relax beside the Indian Ocean.
Ground cover: Ground, grass and fallen leaves
Shade: Plenty of trees
Ablution & facilities: You’ll find communal ablution, washing up and laundry facilities. The campsites have no electricity.
Price: R15 per person park fees and R190 for two people camping. R68 extra per adult and R34 extra per child under 12.
Contact: 044 531 6700,  www.sanparks.org

10. Kromrivier Campsite, Cederberg Tourist Park


Nothing like a good spot of camping in the much-loved Cederberg, situated conveniently close to Cape Town and ideal for a weekend break. Kromrivier is a working farm bordering the Cederberg Wilderness Area and is ideal for those seeking a quiet and tranquil break from city life. The campsite lies on the banks of the Kromriver.

Things to do: The children will love looking at the farm animals while the entire family can have fun hiking, swimming in the mountain streams and watching out for new and fascinating bird species. Those looking for a bit of adventure can go rock climbing or horse-back riding and the farm also has a restaurant and coffee shop where you can enjoy a nice meal and refreshing drinks.
Ground cover: Grass
Shade: Partially shaded
Ablution & facilities: Shared bathrooms with hot showers and electricity points at the new camp. Cooling facilities are available at the office.
Price: R150 per person per night. Maximum four people per site.
Contact: 027 482 2807, www.cederbergpark.com

11. Beaverlac, Grootfontein Farm, Cederberg

This picturesque natural heritage site boasts plenty of deep rock pools and beautiful waterfalls with which to wash away the summer’s heat. The caves around the farm are decorated with well-preserved rock paintings. One great advantage is that you never have to book for camping, you can merely show up.

Things to do: Hike, swim and relax. The farm allows no music or noise in the evening, making it a tranquil escape to nature.
Ground cover: Grass

Shade: Partially shaded with trees
Ablution & facilities: Shared ablution blocks and no electricity at the campsites.
Price: R20 per car and another R55 per person per night. Children pay R35 per night and if you want to bring your dog, it’s R50 extra.
Contact: 022 931 2945, www.beaverlac.co.za.

Here are a few tips for camping at Beaverlac.

12. Matroosberg Private Nature Reserve, Ceres

Although this is one of the Western Cape’s most popular destinations to see snow, Matroosberg is also a perfect destination for a summer getaway. The fairly small and peaceful camping area is far removed from the chalets and houses in the reserve and can be found in a shady pine tree area beside the Spek River.

Things to do: If you enjoy getting active, you’ll love knowing that they offer abseiling, hiking, mountain biking, kloofing, horse riding and even target shooting. If you just want to relax though, you can walk to the rock pools and spend an afternoon swimming and soaking up the sun.
Ground cover: Grass
Shade: Plenty of trees
Ablution & facilities: Shared bathroom and hot shower facilities and no electricity.
Price: R50 per person per night for the traditional campsite with shared ablutions; R70 per person per night for a site with private bathroom.
Contact: 023 312 2282, www.matroosberg.com

Campsites in Kwa-Zulu Natal

If you’re not specifically looking for campsites, check out these affordable weekend getaways near Durban.

13. Sani Lodge Backpackers, Southern Drakensberg

Have a chilled out holiday near the foot of this iconic South African pass and enjoy the beautiful scenery on a quiet and relaxed camping trip.

Things to do: Short hikes to the mountain pools and guided walks to rock art sites.
Ground cover: Grass
Shade: Lots of trees
Ablution & facilities: Shared, unisex ablutions and communal kitchens with stove, fridge, kettle, sink, work surface (no fridge). There’s also a braai area. No electricity points
Price: R75 per person per night.
Contact: Tel 033 702 0330, www.sanilodge.co.za

14. Richards Bay Caravan Park, Richards Bay

It may seem like just another industrial area with nothing but cargo ships, tugboats, cranes and warehouses, but amidst it all lays the small town ofRichard’s Bay with a peaceful campsite beside the Indian Ocean.iSimangaliso Wetland Park is just to the north while Durban is just to the south.

Things to do: Golf, paintball, outdoor chess and access to a beautiful private beach
Ground cover: Grass
Shade: Trees
Ablution & facilities: Communal ablutions, shared kitchen but individual braai stands, electricity points at each campsite.
Price: R110 per adult per night and R75 for kids. (Over December-January, R310 per adult per night and R105 per child per night.)
Contact: 035 753 1971, www.richardsbaycaravanpark.co.za

15. Ilanga Resort and Caravan Park, Banana Beach

This beautifully green and shaded campsite is directly adjacent to Banana Beach where the Indian Ocean’s waters are warm and inviting. This section of the coast is protected by shark nets and life guards are on duty during the holidays – so don’t worry about the children enjoying a splash in the ocean.

Things to do: When you’re not relaxing in the shade or on the beach, you can enjoy a good surf next to Banana Beach or go scuba diving in the area. Their is also a tidal pool for the younger children to enjoy and a few golf courses only a short drive away. The resort has an entertainment area with pool, darts, swimming pool and table tennis.
Ground cover: Mostly grass
Shade: Plenty of trees
Ablution & facilities: Shared ablutions with hot showers and an electricity point at each of the 100 stands.
Price: R313 per night for two people, plus R90 per extra adult. (In December-January, R450 per couple and R100 per extra adult.)
Contact: 039 681 3280, www.ilangaresort.com

16. Scottburgh Campsite and Caravan Park, Umdoni Coast

Situated only 30 minutes south of Durban, the campsite is nicknamed ‘The one on the beach’ for good reason. This rather large camping and caravan site walks down onto the beach and is ideal for large family getaways.

Things to do: Apart from the beach, there are also water slides, mini-golf, restaurants and shops all within walking distance of your camp spot.
Ground cover: Mostly grass
Shade: Partially shaded sites
Ablution & facilities: Shared ablutions with hot showers and an electricity point at the stands. The site is also wheelchair friendly.
Price: R265 for two people. (In December-January, R695 for up to four people.)
Contact: 039 976 0291, www.scottburghcaravanpark.co.za

17. Mahai Campsite, Royal Natal National Park

Panoramic view of the Amphitheatre range in the Drakensberg mountains

Camp on the banks of the Mahai River while the mountains loom in the background and get the chance to visit the renowned Amphitheatre, a magnificent rock wall approximately five km in length and 500m high.

Things to do: Purchase a comprehensive guide to all the hiking trails as you enter through the main gate and you’ll want to start exploring the mountains immediately. The area is also perfect for trout fishing, with both dams as well as the Mahai and Thukela rivers offering great fishing and swimming spots.
Ground cover: Grass and ground
Shade: Plenty of trees
Ablution & facilities: Communal ablution blocks and the caravan spots have electricity. There is also a communal freezer.
Price: R300 for three adults; R100 per adult extra and R50 per child.
Contact: 033 845 1000, www.kznwildlife.co.za

18. Cobham Campsite, Southern Drakensberg

Get back to basics at Cobham with open campsites where you can choose where you want to camp. So pick a spot in the shade and enjoy the peaceful atmosphere of the Southern Drakensberg. The campsite falls in the beautiful uKhahlamba-Drakensberg Park.

Things to do: Hike in the area and just enjoy getting away from it all. Take a walk and explore the sparkling pools of the Pholela River.
Ground cover: Grass
Shade: Partially shaded
Ablution & facilities: Shared bathrooms with hot showers and no electricity. You’ll also need to take your own braai.
Price: R65 a person a night and R30 for children.
Contact: 033 702 0831, www.kznwildlife.com.

Campsites in the Eastern Cape

19. Mvubu Campsite, Addo Elephant Park

This small campsite sits on the banks of the Sundays River in the Kabouga section of the Addo Elephant National Park and serves as a wonderful base for exploring the park while enjoying quiet evenings in the bush

Things to do: If you’re not out exploring the park on self drives or hikes you can relax in the river and pools inside the camp or set out on a day of bird watching.
Ground cover: Grass
Shade: Only a few sites have shade so book accordingly
Ablution & facilities: Flush toilets, hot showers and a communal (basic) kitchen.
Price: From R110 a night for the first two people, R30 per person extra. Maximum four people.
Contact: 042 233 8600,  www.sanparks.org.

20. Mdumbi Backpackers, Wild Coast

You don’t get more feel-at-home than at Mdumbi. Here, everyone feels like a local as they enjoy a laid-back holiday of note on a grassy hill that tumbles down onto a deserted Wild Coast beach.

Things to do: Rent a surfboard and take an informal lesson, go kayaking up the river or hike the nearby cliffs and caves.
Ground cover: Grass
Shade: Plenty of trees
Ablution & facilities: Shared ablutions with hot water. Fully equipped communal kitchen with about four fridges for storing alcohol and perishables.
Price: R70 a person a night to camp
Contact: 083 461 1834, www.mdumbi.co.za

21. Rendezvous Caravan Park, East London

Not as well known as the other Sunshine Coast campsites, Rendezvous Caravan Park is a lush campsite and access to a spectacular beach close toEast London.

Things to do: Apart from birding and fishing you can also go horse riding here.
Ground cover: Grass
Shade: Bushy trees
Ablution & facilities: Each campsite has a private bathroom, portable braai (with grid), electricity, running water and scullery. Laundry is communal.
Price: From R200 a site a night for the first four people, plus R50 a night for each extra person. Maximum six people. (In December-January, R480 per site.)
Contact: 043 734 3317, www.rendezvouscaravanpark.co.za

22. Yellowwood Forest Campsite, Morgan Bay

Situated on the banks of the Inchara River, this peacefully shaded campsite is only 1km from the beach at Morgan Bay, known to many as the gateway to the beautiful Wild Coast. A bird watcher’s paradise, this campsite offers a quiet, intimate place for nature lovers.

Things to do: If you’re not relaxing beside the river, swimming in it or identifying the birds that stay in the area, you can make your way down to the beach or relax in the tea garden, letting the children play in the play area while you enjoy wood-fired pizzas, light meals and refreshments.
Ground cover: Grass
Shade:  Plenty of trees
Ablution & facilities:  Shared ablution blocks with toilets, showers and hot water as well as electricity points at the campsites.
Price:  R100 per site per day, R15 per person (up to six per campsite). R60 per day for electricity. (In high season, R200 per site and R20 per person.)
Contact: 043 841 1598,  www.yellowwoodforest.co.za

23. Gecko’s Place, Port St Johns

The 7km of dirt road will be worth it when you arrive at this secluded setting along the ruggedly beautiful Wild Coast’s coastline.

Things to do: With 5km of beach front, you can walk for miles without stumbling upon civilization. Hike through the unspoilt surroundings and perhaps visit the nearby Poenskop beach – a well-known angling spot in the area.
Ground cover: Grass
Shade: Trees and canopies for caravans
Ablution & facilities: Shared ablution block and individual electricity points for campers.
Price: From R80 per person per night (In high season, R90 per person per night.)
Contact: 047 564 1237, www.geckosplace.co.za

24. Coffee Shack Backpackers, Coffee Bay

If you want to experience the beauty of the Wild Coast in a more social manner, the camping area at Coffee Shack will connect you with many other local and foreign travellers. Set up camp at the mouth of the Bomvu River and explore the beautiful region surrounding Coffee Bay.

Things to do: When you’re not on the beach or hiking in the area, you can do a guided hike to Hole in the Wall or take a few surfing lessons at the backpackers. Otherwise, take a three-day drumming course or go on a tour to explore the region’s caves.
Ground cover: Grass
Shade: Plenty of trees
Ablution & facilities: Shared ablution blocks and electricity points at the communal lounging area.
Price: R75 per person per night.
Contact: 047 575 2048, www.coffeeshack.co.za

Campsites in the Northern Cape

25. Augrabies Falls National Park

Things to do: Waterfall viewpoints, self-drive game viewing, hiking trails and guided night drives.

Ground cover: Grass and ground
Shade: Trees
Ablution & facilities: Communal ablutions and kitchen wit two-plate stoves and sinks. Electricity point at each campsite.
Price: From R195 for two people per night. R68 per extra adult, R34 per child.
Contact: 012 428 9111,  www.sanparks.org

26. Potjiespram Campsite, ?Ai-?Ais/Richtersveld Transfrontier Park

Situated in South African’s far northwestern corner, right on the Namibian border, the Richtersveld is for experienced campers looking to get as far as possible away from it all.

Things to do: Walk and admire the flowers in spring, bird watching, guided hiking trails.
Ground cover: Mostly ground
Shade: Partial. All sites are beside the river though, which might bring with it slightly cooler conditions.
Ablution & facilities: Communal ablutions, cold showers and no electricity.
Price: From R195 for two people per night. R68 per extra adult, R34 per child.
Contact: 012 428 9111, www.sanparks.org

27. De Hoop Campsite, Richtersveld

NOt to be confused with the nature reserve in the Western Cape of the same name. Enjoy the best of both worlds as you camp on the banks of the Orange River, while being deep in the bush at the same time. This is, however, one for the more exprienced camper as it offers a brilliantly rustic experience, literally in the middle of no where and in between two countries.

Things to do: Relax on the river’s soft sand, swim or fish in this quiet part of the Orange River. Bring along a canoe and enjoy the quiet waters as you won’t find any rapids close to the campsite.
Ground cover: Sand and ground
Shade: Partial tree shade
Ablution & facilities: The shared ablutions have only cold water and there is no electricity on the campsite.
Price: From R195 for two people per night. R68 per extra adult, R34 per child. (Maximum 6 people per campsite)
Contact: 021-853-7952, www.richtersveldnationalpark.com

Campsites in Limpopo

28. Mazhou Campsite, Mapungubwe National Park

With only 10 sites, this is yet another peaceful campsite surrounded by absolutely breathtaking scenery. In fact, the Mapungubwe National Park is a World Heritage Site, making this an ideal base to start your exploration.

Things to do: Go on sunset or night drives or explore the park on foot with the guided walks. The heritage walks will take you to a graveyard on Mapungubwe Hill.
Ground cover: Grass and ground
Shade: Partial
Ablution & facilities: Communal ablutions, shared kitchen and power points at each campsite.
Price: From R225 a site for two people, R68 for an additional adult. Maximum six people.
Contact: 012 428 9111, www.sanparks.org

29. Bontle Camping Site, Marakele National Park Limpopo

Seeing as the bush gets rather warm in summer, you’ll be glad to know that this particular campsite ranks a little lower on game sightings, but much higher when it comes to shade. It’s also only three-and-a-half hours from both Johannesbug and Pretoria.

Things to do: Game viewing, although sightings are known to be few and far between. The park does, however, host one of the world’s largest breeding colonies of the endangered Cape Vulture. You can also look out for rhino and elephant. You can also head off on a walking trail.
Ground cover: Grass and ground
Shade: Plenty of trees
Ablution & facilities: Communal ablutions and electricity points at some of the campsites. Everything is wheelchair friendly.
Price: R215 for two people. R62 for an extra adult and R31 for an extra child.
Contact: 021 777 1745,  www.sanparks.org

Campsites in the North-West Province

30. Borakalalo Game Reserve

It’s a tented camp, rather than a traditional campsite, but Borakalolo is translated as ‘where people go to relax’ and is a lazy little provincial nature reserve – and a great alternative to Pilanesberg. Don’t expect any mega wildlife sightings, but enjoy the complete lack of vehicle pile-ups when you stop to view resident herds of waterbuck, kudu and hippo instead. All you hear when you sit down and close your eyes in Phudufudu Tented Camp are birds. With just 10 safari tents, a communal kitchen and braai facilities, it’s ideal for a group getaway.

Price: From R390 a two-sleeper tent a night.

Contact: 012 729 4101, www.parksnorthwest.co.za/borakalalo

Campsites in the Free State

31. Glen Reenen, Golden Gate National Park

Although many may argue that this is not a typical bush experience, Glen Reenen is the perfect spot for admiring local birdlife and plains game. The ancient Maloti Mountains are an impressive backdrop, showing off rich gold and ochre colouring.

Things to do: On game drives you can look out for the rare bearded vulture and bald ibis and across the park’s flatlands there are zebra, wildebeest, eland and oribi.
Ground cover: Grass and ground
Shade: Tree coverage
Ablution & facilities: Shared ablution blocks and braai area. Electricity points at the ablution block and selected campsites.
Price: From R180 for two people. R68 for each extra adult and R34 for each extra child.
Contact: 012 428 9111, www.sanparks.org

32. Meiringskloof Nature Park, Fouriesburg

Meiringskloof is situated in the Eastern Free State, 1.7 km from Fouriesburg.  It is located in a beautiful kloof and surrounded by sandstone cliffs with open caves, thick indigenous bush and abundant bird life.

Things to do: The reserve itself offers many hiking trails for you to explore the surrounds and the caves after which you can cool off in the swimming pool. The 4×4 trails will challenge both the experienced and novice driver and the reserve also offers horse back rides and abseiling at an extra cost. The Lesotho border is only 11km away if you feel like exploring a country within a country.
Ground cover: Grass and ground
Shade: Partial tree shade
Ablution & facilities: Each campsite has its own electricity point and braai area. Ablutions are shared.
Price: R115 per night for the campsite (sleeps six). R45 extra per adult and R25 per child. This includes one car and it’s R30 extra for a second car.
Contact: 058 223 0067, www.meiringskloof.co.za

To read orginal article kindly go to, http://www.getaway.co.za/travel-stories/weekend-breaks/best-campsites-south-africa/


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