South Africa: Journey to Inspirational Places

Must-See Places for a 2-Week Getaway

Mosaic Private Sanctuary

Mosaic Private Sanctuary

Planning a trip to a popular destination can be an exhausting task. So we’ve decided to share an amazing itinerary to South Africa that was featured in last year’s Evergreen Ball. We share highly recommended places to stay and things to do when visiting the country’s most popular attractions and cities, including Johannesburg and Cape Town.


Exterior photo of The Residence in Houghton, South Africa

The Residence

The Residence  
Owner: Contact Edgar Rudge
General Manager: Contact Sanet

Guests staying at this luxe hotel are greeted at the airport and escorted – in a stylish Mercedes Benz Viano or Rolls Royce – to the Residence, a 5-star boutique hotel in Johannesburg. Enjoy a relaxing stay in a luxury suite with a private outdoor bath and shower, enormous beds and spacious balconies. The Residence is located in the historic suburb of Houghton, and around the corner from the home of former president, Nelson Mandela. The Residence exudes a charming atmosphere to unwind and rejuvenate from the worries of the world. This is a blissful oasis where guests are treated with personalized service and are invited to make themselves at home.

The Residence Poolside in Houghton, South Africa

The Residence

The Residence’s amenities include 2 pools, a tennis court, a nearby golf course and a wonderful dining room that offers delicious menu and wine list. Guests are encouraged to watch the sun set from the Sky Bar or unwind with a romantic couples’ spa treatment that includes a massage and facial.

Get inspired! Take a virtual tour around the Residence – you’ll quickly understand why TripAdvisor ranked it the No. 1 hotel out of 71 hotels in Johannesburg.

South African Safari
Jamala Madikwe Royal Safari Lodge (South Africa’s North West Province)

Owner: Contact Rodney Steyn

Lioness and her cubs in South Africa

Jamala Madikwe Royal Safari Lodge

Next stop on this inspirational journey is a 45-minute trip on a Federal Air commuter flight from Johannesburg to the 187,500-acre Madikwe Game Reserve, located in South Africa’s North West Province. Experience this award-winning safari for a close encounter with Africa’s Big Five: the African lion, African elephant, Cape buffalo, African leopard and white/black rhinoceros. It’s also one of the few places in the world where guests can see wild dogs in their natural habitat.

Jamala Madikwe Royal Safari Lodge in South Africa

Jamala Madikwe Royal Safari Lodge

Stay at Jamala Madikwe Royal Safari Lodge. It has just 5 luxurious villas that include a lounge with a fireplace, a dining area, a private plunge pool, outdoor shower and walk-in dressing room.  The lodge also provides other top-notched services and activities such as a full breakfast, high tea and organized safari game drives. From its genteel position beneath a canopy of age-old Leadwood trees, the deck-fringed lodge offers panoramic views of the open savanna and a watering hole that plays host to wildlife roaming on the lodge’s premises.

Find out why TripAdvisor rated Jamala Madikwe No. 1 of 23 specialty lodges in the Madikwe Game Reserve. Take a look at more breathtaking photos of this luxurious lodge and find out why it’s such an inspirational place.

Cape Town

MannaBay near Table Mountain in Cape Town, South Africa


MannaBay (Cape Town)
Owner: Contact David Ryan

Looking for more inspiration? Hop on a FedAir flight back to beautiful Cape Town to experience MannaBay. This upscale boutique hotel sits at the foot of Table Mountain, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the Natural New 7 Wonders of the World. As a guest, you’ll have easy access from the hotel that leads directly to Table Mountain National Park.

MannaBay Cafe overlooking Cape Town, South Africa


The view from this luxe hotel allows guests to look out across the Mother City to shores of the nearby Atlantic Ocean. Enjoy these dazzling views while eating breakfast at the MannaBay Café; take a dip in the Pom Suite’s private plunge pool; enjoy the awe-inspiring harbor view from the Black & White Suite; or grab a cocktail and watch the sun set from the hotel’s rooftop bar. In addition to its 8 rooms with unique amenities, MannaBay also provides guests with several opportunities to explore Cape Town. Located in a prime vantage spot, the hotel is perfect for day excursions to a winery, or for the more adventurous, go cage diving with sharks near Dyer Island and Geyser Rock.

MannaBay has won numerous awards and accolades including a World Luxury Hotel Award 2015. Take a look at more photos of MannaBay and get additional information about its luxurious accommodations.

Cape Whale Coast

Whale diving back into water near Cape Whale Coast, South Africa

Mosaic Private Sanctuary

Mosaic Private Sanctuary
Owner: Contact Kathryn Johnson

Visitors to South Africa shouldn’t leave the country without a beautiful coastal drive along Chapman’s Peak, Cape Point and or the Cape Whale Coast – the latter is located 2 hours southeast of Cape Town. Outdoor enthusiasts looking for a little adventure should head to Cape Whale Coast, regarded as the best place in the world for land-based whale watching. In addition to whale watching, travelers will enjoy a few nights exploring the Mosaic Private Sanctuary, one of South Africa’s hidden gems on the coast. An all-inclusive stay at the Mosaic Lagoon Lodge includes all meals and some fun outdoor activities including 4x4 beach excursions, kayaking, quad biking, marine tours, shark cage diving, mountain biking, bird watching and exploring the Overberg Wine Region.

Mosaic Private Sanctuary, Lagoon Lodge, South Africa

Mosaic Private Sanctuary

For the ultimate private getaway, this boutique resort captures the essence of tranquility with 5 secluded, safari-style suites on the edge of the Hermanus Lagoon. Stone and glass walls open onto private decks with gorgeous mountain views.  Each room has beautiful soft netting surrounding a king bed, a romantic fireplace, large bathtub and an outdoor shower.  Enjoy some quiet time in a heated plunge pool after a nature walk to see more than 9,000 species of plants. Whales, great white sharks, seals, penguins and dolphins are a few animals visitors will spot in the area near or surrounding the lodge, too.

Featured in National Geographic Traveller, Mosaic is a stunning destination for travelers who enjoy the spending quality time outdoors. Get an inside look of the luxurious accommodations and amenities at the Lagoon Lodge and learn more about this unique private sanctuary.

Franschhoek Wine Valley

La Cle’ de Montagnes
General Manager: Contact Peggy Clements

To wrap up this amazing adventure in South Africa, we suggest another gorgeous drive through the mountains to one of the most beautiful wine regions in the world, Franschhoek Wine Valley. Franschhoek – which means “French corner” in Afrikaans – was settled in 1688 by French Huguenot refugees that left France under the reign of Louis XIV and the revocation of the Edict of Nantes. They brought their cooking traditions and vine stock to this small village, located in the Western Cape Province. Today, this small town is often referred to as the culinary capital of South Africa.

Looking for luxe accommodations while you’re visiting? Located on an award-winning winery, the La Clé de Montagnes has 4 private luxury villas that are walking distance to some of the best restaurants in Africa. Designed to accommodate 4 to 8 guests, the villas include a variety of amenities including private pool, patio with BBQ facilities, a lounge, a dining room, a full kitchen and butler service. It’s the picturesque vineyards and plum orchards with a magnificent mountain backdrop that really make this an unforgettable experience.

La Cle des Montagnes Pool , Franschhoek Wine Valley, South Africa

La Cle des Montagnes

Ranked No. 6 out of 40 specialty lodges in Franschhoek (according to TripAdvisor), La Clé des Montagnes is a short stroll from the village’s historic center. Enjoy an unparalleled luxurious experience in the heart of the beautiful Franschhoek, one of the South Africa’s oldest towns and arguably one of world’s most beautiful wine valleys.

Feeling inspired to spend some time in wine country? See more photos and get more information about La Clé des Montagnes.

The Hot List

Explore America’s most stunning scenery.
Join the conversation on Social Media!
Stay updated on the latest travel tips and trends.
Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss Travel Channel in your favorite social media feeds.

Grove Park Inn
Next Up

World's Wackiest Spa Treatments

See the weirdest spa treatments in the world.