The Ultimate South Africa for Families

This ten-day itinerary is full of activites for the ultimate South Africa family holiday. Starting in Cape Town, visit historical sites before you take in the penguins at Boulders Beach, the warrior toy museum in Simon’s Town and the Two Oceans Aquarium on the Cape Town waterfront. Next, head up to the Waterburg region for a stay at one of Lightfoot Travel’s favourite family accommodations in South Africa, the wonderful Ant’s Nest. Lastly, visit the magnificent Madikwe Game Reserve on the border with Botswana, where the kids can experience the Big Five!

Days 1-3: Exploring Cape Town

Situated between Robben Island and Table Mountain in the heart of Cape Town’s working harbour, the V&A Waterfront has become one of South Africa’s most visited destinations. It is near here that the ferries depart for Robben Island (from the Nelson Mandela Gateway), while the Two Oceans Aquarium is a short walk from here.

Your stay this evening will be at the beautiful Table Bay Hotel, superb neo-Victorian hotel located in the V & A Waterfront in Cape Town with stunning views over Table Bay

Family activities abound in Cape Town, but our top selections include:

  • Two Oceans Aquarium – see the sea life of South Africa’s two oceans (one of five on the world) at The V&A Waterfront
  • Tomb Raider – thousands of semi precious stones to play with and take home at Scratch Patch at The V&A Waterfront.
  • Cave Golf – at the Scratch Patch at The V&A Waterfront
  • World of Birds – in Hout Bay is the largest bird park in Africa (walk-through aviaries with over 3500 birds)
  • Penguins – drive down to Cape Point and stop along the way at Simon’s Town to view a colony of African penguins at Boulders Beach
  • Seal Island – take a boat trip to Hout Bay’s Duiker (Seal) Island – a seal and bird sanctuary where kids can watch the seals
  • Garden of Eden – visit Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens on the back slopes of Table Mountain, voted one of the top 7 in the world
  • Old McDonald… – Imhoff’s Farm: kids can feed, touch and play with farm animals like lambs, calves and rabbits – In Kommetjie
  • Warrior Toy Museum – toys, dolls and miniatures in Simon’s Town
  • Reptile World – Le Bonheur crocodile farm in Stellenbosch
  • Grape Expectations – visit Spier Cultural Village and Wine Estate in Stellenbosch where parents can go wine tasting while kids feed the ducks or ride a pony
  • Tropical Forest – Visit Butterfly World, on the N1 towards Stellenbosch and walk amongst butterflies and insects.
  • Under the Stars – Experience Cape Town’s Planetarium, next to the South African National Gallery in the centre of town Grand West (fun for 10 years and younger)

Stay: Table Bay Hotel

Days 4-7: Safari in Limpopo

Situated in the central Limpopo province, just a 3 hour drive from Johannesburg, the malaria free Waterberg Biosphere is a scenic and wildlife rich area. The impressive Waterberg Mountain Range stretches across the Reserve, creating a natural diversity with endless views of the plains of the lower escarpment from the high peaks of the upper escarpment.

Ant’s Nest is a private bush home located in Limpopo province, just 3 hours from Johannesburg. The Baber family settled in the area in 1886 and in the mid 1990’s Ant and Tessa renovated the old ranch house, which became Ant’s Nest.

This is the perfect safari for children, and can be quite a life-changing experience. Their unique policy allows children of all ages to join their parents on all game viewing activities, so you can witness their first wildlife encounters. There wonderful ponies on the property that cater to both novice and experienced riders, as well as “bug walks” with guides, a trampoline, sand pits and a selection of toys and books.


Stay: Ants Nest

Days 7-9: Madikwe Game Reserve

One of South Africa’s newer and prime safari destinations, the Madikwe Game Reserve is situated in the malaria free North West Province, bordering Botswana. This “Big Five” Reserve spans 75,000 hectares, making it one of the largest game reserves in South Africa. The lions in Madikwe originate from Etosha in Namibia, and are known to hunt very large prey such as giraffe and eland which requires immense strength and makes for impressive sightings.

Madikwe Safari Lodge Lelapa is nestled along the hillside offering views of the surrounding plains through to the purple-hued Dwarsberg Mountains. The property is composed of 3 lodges that each work independently and are interconnected by walkways.

Lelapa (meaning ‘family’) Lodge has twelve suites and welcomes children of all ages. Family safari drives, pizza making in the ‘boma’, star gazing and many other ‘Madikwe Cubz’ activities ensure that kids are kept extremely busy, with those as young as two permitted on the dedicated family drives in the late morning.


Stay: Madikwe Safari Lodge

Day 10: Depart Home

Today, you will depart Madikwe Game Reserve and be transferred to the airport to catch your return flight home.


Duration Description Overnight
Days 1-3: Exploring Cape Town Table Bay Hotel
Days 4-7: Safari in Limpopo Ants Nest
Days 7-9: Madikwe Game Reserve Madikwe Safari Lodge
Day 10: Depart Home



  • Accommodation with daily breakfast
  • Transfers
  • 24 hour emergency contact
  • Activities mentioned in the itinerary
  • English speaking tour guide

Not Included

  • International and domestic airfare
  • Personal expenses
  • Visa fees and/or visa authorization
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Other expenses not mentioned on the itinerary
  • Travel insurance (please note that travel insurance is mandatory for all Lightfoot Travel holidays)


Table Bay Hotel Ants Nest Madikwe Safari Lodge Lelapa