This 10-day family trip to South Africa blends the perfect mix of adventure, excursions, and luxury downtime as you explore the country's scenic Garden Route and Western Cape. Start in lively Cape Town, where you'll scale Table Mountain by cable car before touring the surrounding wine country. Introduce the kids to Africa's iconic Big Five as you safari in Gondwana before winding up on the pristine shores of Knysna and catching a sunset cruise along the lagoon.


  • Play with the penguins on Boulders Beach 
  • Soar up Table Mountain by cable car 
  • Take a family-friendly wine-tasting tour 
  • Spot the Big Five on safari at Gondwana 
  • Experience a sunset cruise on the stunning Knysna Lagoon

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Cape Town, Optional Activities Cape Town
Day 2 Cape Point & Boulders Beach Penguin Tour Cape Town
Day 3 Table Mountain Cable Car, Pirate Ship Sail, African Dinner Experience Cape Town
Day 4 Western Cape Family Wine Tour Cape Town
Day 5 Drive to Hermanus, Explore Hermanus
Day 6 Drive to Herbertsdale, Gondwana Private Game Reserve Herbertsdale
Day 7 Gondwana Game Reserve, Junior Ranger Program Herbertsdale
Day 8 Drive to Knysna, Knysna Sunset Cruise Knysna
Day 9 Featherbed Nature Reserve Excursion Knysna
Day 10 Drive to George & Depart  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Cape Town, Optional Activities

Welcome to Cape Town
Welcome to Cape Town

Welcome to South Africa! Nicknamed "Rainbow Nation" by Archbishop Desmond Tutu, this extraordinary country is a melting pot of diversity home to people of Indigenous Khoisan and Bantu, European, Asian, and mixed-race ancestry. The country offers incredible diversity and fantastic nature, wildlife, culture, and history, making it a truly remarkable destination for visitors and families. 

Upon arrival, a driver will pick you up at the airport and transfer you to your Cape Town hotel, your base, for the next few nights. Settle in before heading out with the kids to explore. The town's many historical parks are perfect for little legs to run around after a long flight. Afterward, head to the famous V&A Waterfront—it's an ideal spot to catch the Cape Town vibe while relaxing with a drink and savoring the waterfront views against the epic Table Mountain backdrop.

In the evening, either treat the family to a harbor cruise as you watch the sunset or, for the ultimate kid-friendly experience that combines dinner and fun, book a table at Strolla Restaurant & Bar. This seaside eatery has a Kiddies' Corner where younger ones can become pizzaioli (pizza makers) and create their own edible masterpieces. Treat yourselves to a cocktail as you toast the start of your holiday adventures while the kids relax post-flight in the restaurant's kid-themed games room.

Day 2: Cape Point & Boulders Beach Penguin Tour

Penguins at Boulder's Beach
Kids will love the adorable penguins on Boulders Beach

This morning, embark on an unforgettable tour as you and the family head on a scenic drive south around Chapman's Peak and down to the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Cape Point. Here on the tip of the famous Cape Peninsula, discover fabulous beaches, lighthouses, and magnificent views across the ocean. Kids will adore a trip on the Flying Dutchman funicular railway, where the vantage point from the iconic lighthouse at the top offers views across both the Indian and Atlantic Oceans. 

If the younger ones thought the cable car was fun, wait until they see the adorable penguins at the Boulders Beach African Penguin Sanctuary. View the tuxedoed waddle up close via a network of wooden walkways before heading to the Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens. With a world-famous reputation, the gardens' setting against the grandeur of Table Mountain is hard to beat. With over 1,303 acres (528 ha) to explore, take one of the trails and admire the colorful flora and fauna as you saunter among the collection of over 7,000 plant species.

Day 3: Table Mountain Cable Car, Pirate Ship Sail, African Dinner Experience

Mountain Peaks & Pirate Ships
Set sail on the Jolly Roger pirate ship!

It's another fun-packed day in Cape Town, and after breakfast, you'll start with an up-close visit to Table Mountain, nicknamed the "Mother of all Mountains." It's a four-hour hike to the top, so take advantage of the cable car that whizzes you up to the summit. Kids will love the rotating carriage that gives splendid views over Robben Island and Signal Hill. Enjoy the panorama and a walk around the top before floating back through the clouds as you return to the base.

Enjoy lunch before getting ready for an excursion sure to delight the little ones. The Jolly Roger pirate ship, moored on the waterfront, is an authentic replica of the real thing. Board the boat with your mini pirates-to-be and set sail for an hour-long sail along the bay and enjoy the fabulous views from the water. After plenty of "Ahoy me hearties!" return to land, and as the sun starts to go down, don't miss a family sunset ride on the Cape Wheel.

As evening falls, you and your family are in for a treat as you head to one of Cape Town's celebrated restaurants for an immersive African gastronomic experience. Sit down to a 14-course tasting menu served in a warm, communal style designed to be shared. As you savor each course, you and the kids will be entertained by a troop of African singers and dancers. If the kids are inspired to join in, watch their faces light up as they learn how to play the djembe drums, enjoy traditional Mali puppetry, and are encouraged to hop on stage and dance with the performers. 

Day 4: Western Cape Family Wine Tour

Family Day Out in the Winelands
Enjoy a family day out in the Western Cape wine region.
Plan your trip to South Africa
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.
Wake up early this morning for a fantastic day out that ticks the boxes for wine-enthusiast parents and fun-seeking little ones. South Africa's Western Cape is home to more than 500 wineries, and today, you'll visit a selection varying from boutique estates to international producers. There will be plenty of opportunities to meet the local winemakers, learn about South African wine, and of course, taste the region's top vintages. 

Your first stop on tour is the historic wine town of Stellenbosch and the elegant Spier Wine Estate. You can get down to the serious business of wine tasting while the younger ones will be given their own grape juice to try and have the opportunity to meet the estate's resident eagles. Next up is the Middelvlei Estate, where your wine tasting coincides with lunch. The estate is famous for its braai (barbecue), where kids can toast their marshmallows alongside traditional specialties. Relax as you taste the estate's fine wines, knowing the kids are playing safely nearby.

If you can tear the kids away from the sandpit, farm animals, and delicious food at the Middelvlei Estate, then the next stop on your wine tour is the Paarl wine region, where you'll visit the Spice Route. Keep the kids entertained with a chocolate and confectionary tasting along with the flagship wines; you can also try the craft beer, visit the grappa distillery, and sample the biltong (dried meat) bar. Round off your day with a visit to the estate's art gallery and glassblowing studio while the kids have free rein in the excellent play area.

Day 5: Drive to Hermanus, Explore

Pod of Dolphins off the coast at Hermanus
A pod of dolphins spotted off the coast at Hermanus 

Enjoy a leisurely morning in Cape Town before picking up your rental car and embarking on a scenic road trip across coastal roads and through wine country to Hermanus. This charming seaside town is particularly kid-friendly and known for its Blue Flag beaches. Check in to your hotel, and if appetites are flagging, take a walk along the town's waterfront promenade, where you'll find plenty of great places to lunch with tremendous views over the ocean.

In the afternoon, discover why Hermanus is known as the "Whale Watching Capital of the World" and hike along the cliffs and coastal paths, which offer a great vantage point to see these magnificent creatures close up. Mesmerize the kids with a visit to the Whale House Museum, where they can see a vast suspended whale skeleton and, depending on energy levels, spend the rest of the day playing on one of the gorgeous sandy beaches or head out for a guided sea kayaking experience. 

Day 6: Drive to Herbertsdale, Gondwana Private Game Reserve

Gondwana Private Game Reserve
Make memories to last a lifetime on safari in South Africa

It's an early start this morning as you prepare for the next leg of your family road trip and take a scenic drive to the inland village of Herbertsdale, nestled in the foothills of the Outeniqua Mountains. Here you'll spend the next two days at the Southern Cape's premier private game reserve, Gondwana. Settle into your accommodation and head out with an expert field guide as you embark on a once-in-a-lifetime experience to see the elephants, lions, leopards, rhinoceros, and buffalo.

Explore the park from your open roof 4WD as you venture off-road in search of the free-roaming Big Five and join the kids in spotting other herds of wildlife, from zebras, cheetahs, hippos, and giraffes. Make memories as you discover the reserve's majestic landscape, while the awe-inspiring views of the Outeniqua and Langeberg Mountains make the perfect backdrop for some family photos to treasure. Back at your lodge, relax with a book and a glass of wine as you watch the sun slowly set amid the nighttime sounds of the bush.

Day 7: Gondwana Game Reserve, Junior Ranger Program

Junior Ranger Programme at Gondwana Game Reserve
Junior Ranger program at Gondwana Game Reserve

Enjoy a relaxed day today, exploring the reserve under your own steam as the kids spend the day as junior safari rangers. With their dedicated field guide, they'll don their unique ranger's backpack and spend the day tracking, fishing, and participating in plenty of fun and educational game drives. While the kids are being well looked after, you have 27,000 acres (10,926 ha) at your disposal. Either head out on one of the guided nature trails, take a horseback safari, hike the rolling hills and sub-tropical valleys, or relax at the luxurious on-site spa. 

Welcome back your enthusiastic mini-conservationists as they regale you with tales of their day spent identifying mammals, birds, and stars and learning all about the importance of conservation and our ecosystem. Spend the evening dining in one of the reserve's impeccable restaurants as you catch up on each other's favorite moments of the day. 

Day 8: Drive to Knysna, Knysna Sunset Cruise

Hang out with the baboons
Hang out with the baboons as you explore 

Enjoy one last wander around the Gondwana Game Reserve before driving west for 1.5 hours to the coastal town of Knysna. Keep your camera close as you journey across one of the most scenic stretches on a route known for its natural beauty. After checking in at your hotel, head out to explore the nearby Wilderness National Park. With a breathtaking mix of tropical forests, beaches, lagoons, and rivers, the park is full of inspiration for kids of all ages and home to a vast array of colorful and exotic flora and fauna. 

Task the kids with spotting the lazy baboons often found relaxing by the roadside as you wind your way through mountain passes and stop to take a breather in the charming towns of Wilderness and George. When you've had your fill of exploring, head back to your hotel, ready for tonight's sunset cruise. Starting at nearby Thesen Island, you and your family will set sail into the Knysna Lagoon against the backdrop of the setting sun. Sip an ice-cold glass of bubbly and marvel at the views; try your hand at sea fishing, and if you're lucky, spot the dolphins and whales that call the area home. 

Day 9: Featherbed Nature Reserve Excursion

Knysna Beach
Relax in the pristine surroundings of Featherbed Nature Reserve

Enjoy a leisurely breakfast in your beautiful surroundings before heading out for today's adventure. A 30-minute ferry crossing will take you to the privately owned Featherbed Nature Reserve, a pristine piece of land situated on the western head of Kynasna. Accompanied by a fun and knowledgeable local guide, you and the kids will take a short nature hike before taking to the water for a cruise in the sparkling waters of the lagoon. Afterward, feast on a freshly prepared buffet before boarding the ferry for your return journey.

Back in Knysna, you have several options for the rest of the day. Take one last scenic nature hike in the lush forests of the Tsitsikamma National Park, take a family standup paddleboarding session on the Knysna Lagoon, or take the kids to Monkeyworld. Experience the remarkable sight of over 500 species in the world's first free-roaming primate sanctuary. As evening falls, dine at one of the superb beachfront restaurants and recount your favorite trip highlights. 

Day 10: Drive to George, Depart

Until the next time, South Africa!

Sadly today marks you and your family's last day in South Africa. In the morning, you'll drive to the George airport, drop off your rental car, and catch your flight home. Safe travels!

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Map of Adventure, Safari & Family Fun in South Africa: Cape Town & the Garden Route - 10 Days
Map of Adventure, Safari & Family Fun in South Africa: Cape Town & the Garden Route - 10 Days