Best Places to Visit in South Africa on Heritage Day | Secura

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Heritage Day is around the corner and South Africans couldn’t be more excited to enjoy a positive and inspiring cultural celebration. While many families will be firing up their Webers for a Heritage Day braai, others are on the lookout for the best places to visit in South Africa for a Heritage Day long weekend getaway. In this article, we highlight the must-visit South African destinations and landmarks that you should be thinking about while planning your Heritage Day trip!

The Cradle of Humankind, Johannesburg

Just over an hours drive from Johannesburg city centre lies the coveted South African World Heritage Site, the Cradle of Humankind. Recognised as the paleoanthropological cornerstone of human evolution, the world-famous site is a must-visit destination for tourists and South Africans alike. As far as our heritage goes, the human-ancestor fossils found at the Cradle of Humankind represent an African history that traces back 4 million years. You may explore the magnificent artefact museums, flip through the research on our human ancestry, and climb through the archaic Sterkfontein Caves. 

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Nelson Mandela Capture Site, KwaZulu-Natal

Durbanites need only travel just shy of an hour to reach the significant steel sculpture and visitor site that marks the point where Nelson Mandela was arrested. Aptly named the Nelson Mandela Capture Site, this heritage destination remembers the moments that changed the course of South African history including the notorious Rivona Trial of 1963. The must-visit place is stationed near the beginning of the Midlands Meander and is a great place to honour our heritage before you continue to charming cafés and boutiques along the winding road.

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Robben Island, Cape Town

If you have yet to immerse yourself in the incredible life story of Nelson Mandela at Robben Island, then this is one of the best places to visit in South Africa on Heritage Day. The iconic former prison where Mandela spent 27 years remains a dramatic exhibit of the devastating Apartheid era and the stalwart freedom fighters that overthrew the tyrannical government. A short ferry trip from the sparkling beaches of Cape Town, Robben Island is a quick but powerful half-day tour to appreciate on Heritage Day.

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Pilgrim’s Rest, Mpumalanga

best places to visit south africa - Pilgrim's Rest, Mpumalanga

Pilgrim’s Rest may not be the first destination that comes to mind when one searches for a weekend stay away in South Africa. Yet, there is some divine accommodation a stone’s throw away from the centre of the provincial heritage site in Mpumalanga. The town appears frozen in time and captures the historic Transvaal Gold Rush spirit in quaint museums and monuments scattered around the neighbourhood. Pilgrim’s Rest is also a gateway to the lush landscapes that veil Mpumalanga’s Panorama Route.

Things to do: Prospector’s Hiking Trail | Alanglade House Museum | Crystal Springs Mountain Bike Trails | Blyderivierspoort Hiking Trail

Richtersveld Cultural and Botanical Landscape, Northern Cape

best places to visit south africa - Richtersveld Cultural and Botanical Landscape, Northern Cape

The arid plateaus and rising peaks of Richtersveld in the Northern Cape remain the cultural landscape on which the semi-nomadic Nama community wander with their grazing livestock. Nama people have been migrating across these lands for over a millennia and their simple, eco-friendly lifestyle is fascinating and admirable. The desert region is recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its boundless biodiversity, and its sweeping plains provide visitors with an unbelievable off-road adventure. 

Things to do: Orange River Rafting Trips | Orange River Fly Fishing | Richtersveld Donkey Trail | Alexander Bay Beach

The Afrikaans Language Monument, Paarl

best places to visit south africa - The Afrikaans Language Monument, Paarl

Paarl is the perfect place to park off on a beautifully sunny spring day and it should be a Heritage Day getaway contender if the weather permits. Beyond the brilliant wines that you can sip alongside views of the illustrious emerald meadows, the Afrikaans Language Monument is a culturally significant landmark and must-visit place to complete your galivant in Paarl. The monument traces the origins of the Afrikaans language as influenced by European settlers and Malay communities and celebrates Afrikaans culture. The panoramic spectacles of Paarl will be the cherry on top of your decision to explore the Western Cape Winelands. 

Other essential experiences in Paarl: Paarl Heritage Walk | Wine Tasting | Drakenstein Lion Park | Carriage Ride at Rhebokskloof Estate

iSimangaliso Wetland Park, KwaZulu-Natal

best places to visit south africa - iSimangaliso Wetland Park, KwaZulu-Natal

iSimangaliso Wetland Park is a massive, protected biodiversity belt that encompasses several reserves and unique destinations unlike any other place in the world. South African flora and fauna will forever hold a culturally significant spot in our hearts and adventurers will adore endless game viewing opportunities this Heritage Day should one choose to cruise the park. From snorkelling over shallow colourful reefs to spotting hippos wading in the water, kayaking down tranquil rivers, and capturing images of mighty elephants, iSimangaliso is an adventure playground for the entire family.

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Sevilla Rock Art Trail, Cederberg

best places south africa - Sevilla Rock Art Trail, Cederberg

The picturesque Cederberg landscape blossoms during spring and its natural beauty bursts to life around Heritage Day time. You may spend the weekend at a glamorous cave accommodation or quiet campsite around the corner from the Sevilla Rock Art Trail that invites visitors to catch a glimpse of some of the finest works of rock art in the country. The trail is tame and weaves across the pastures where Springbok, Eland, and other game graze. In the evening, you may admire the cosmos as you stargaze up at the crystal clear night sky.

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Stay Safe at the Best Places to Visit in South Africa With Secura

It is easy to forget about one’s safety during Heritage Day excursions to the best places to visit in South Africa. After all, adventure and excitement take preference. That said, Secura gives you peace of mind during your travels by eliminating your safety concerns that could otherwise dampen your weekend. Offering travellers a reliable panic button and/or panic app that connects to thousands of armed response teams across the country, Secura can protect you and your family should you require emergency assistance.

Let Secura Keep You Safe While You Travel.