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BBEFORE THE TRIP
Careful planning will allow clients to fit in everything they want to try — find out what they really want to do and plan the itinerary around that. If hiking, advise clients to travel light and to invest in good boots (and take time to break them in.) Those going in for strenuous adventure should do as much physical preparation as possible: gently increase a training schedule and be aware of strengths and limitations.
OON THE TRIP
Many visitors fly into Cape Town, which makes Table Mountain a great place to start any adventure. Its flat plateau has become the symbol of South Africa, and at just 3,280ft high, it’s a manageable three-
hour scramble. Hikers will need to have a good level of fitness, and in summer (November to February) the hike is hot and gets almost no shade.
Underground adventures: suggest visiting Cango Caves in Oudtshoorn — the ‘adventure tour’ involves crawling through a series of increasingly narrow passages to reach stunning geological formations.
Chilled adventure: nothing beats a good road trip. Drive the Garden Route, a 186-mile stretch of the southeastern coast. There are plenty of beautiful beaches to stop off at, as well as activities such as white-water tubing.
Water Sports: The Orange River is the largest in South Africa, running through the Green Kalahari of the Northern Cape, creating thrilling rapids ideal for whitewater rafting.
WWater-based adventures: shark cage diving should be on the itinerary. Head to Hermanus, where shark watchers are given a mask and wetsuit, and climb into a cage attached to the boat — before long, the water is full of majestic great white sharks, slowly circling the boat.
Mountains and more: For challenging hikes, head north to uKhahlamba-Drakensberg Park, home to the highest point in Africa south of Kilimanjaro. A helicopter trip over the Drakensberg Mountains gives an incredible view over the valleys and peaks of this rugged, vast mountain area. The Drakensberg Canopy Tour is a popular, and thrilling, family experience, with 12 ziplines criss-crossing a valley over indigenous forest.
WWhat to pack
Some hikes, such as Table Mountain, can be done wearing gym shoes and jeans, while others, such as multi-day treks in the Drakensberg, will require proper gear. Winter is between June and September and temperatures can drop to single figures, especially at altitude. If you plan on spending a lot of time outside, pack hats, neck coverings and long trousers to protect from the sun and insect bites.