Beach Vacations

African Beach Vacations

For waters rich with wildlife, vast, sandy shores and an abundance of adventurous pursuits, opt for an African beach vacation.

Introduction

Our wide variety of African beach vacations are available in the countries of South Africa and Mozambique. Each destination offers its own unique coastal crusades, with strikingly distinct environments.

Mozambique beach holidays are largely characterized by island leisure, while beach vacations in South Africa can extend to incorporate other adventures like safaris and city or town tours for a more comprehensive getaway.

Popular Beach Vacations

A beach dinner with a view of the sunset at Azura Benguerra Lodge in Mozambique. 5 Day Mozambique

A luxurious beach escape to Azura Benguerra Lodge amidst the translucent waters and fine sands of Mozambique's Benguerra Archipelago.

The beaches of the Eastern Cape are wonderfully wild. 7 Day Wild Coast Breakaway

An unforgettable four star honeymoon beach vacation on the wild shores of South Africa's Eastern Cape, blending temperate waters and lush scenery.

A guest snorkels in the Indian Ocean on a beach vacation in Mozambique. 10 Day Benguerra & Quirimbas

Combine Mozambique's two most awe-inspiring marine areas on an exclusive beach adventure that visits exquisitely remote islands in the Indian Ocean.

Medjumbe Island Lodge is one of the finest accomodations for a beach vacation package. 15 Day Exotic Island & Safari

The ultimate five star honeymoon experience that includes a five star safari in Botswana, a visit to Victoria Falls and a private island in Mozambique.

Why Choose Africa for your beach vacation?

1

Incredible settings

Southern Africa's signature diversity extends to the backdrops of its beaches. The islands and shores of Mozambique are indelibly tropical, while South Africa's north coast offers a wilder, more rugged sub-tropical milieu. Further south, the shores of the Garden Route are akin to scenery of the north Pacific, while Cape Town's Mediterranean climate makes for sublime summers.

2

Ample Space

The only time you really need to worry about crowded beaches is during the festive season (December / January) in South Africa. The remainder of the time, wherever you may venture, you will enjoy ample elbow room. There is no need to reserve a lounger or wake up early to stretch your towel out on the sand - simply head down to the beach and indulge in your precious leisure time.

3

Water-based activities

While an African beach vacation can certainly amount to a lot of leisure and relaxation time, it would be amiss not to indulge in a few of the incredible activities on offer. In Mozambique, enjoy some of the finest scuba diving and snorkeling environments imaginable, along with deep sea fishing, dhow sailing and kayaking. South Africa offers fishing, surfing, shark cage diving, whale watching and more.

Top Beach Vacation Destinations

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Cape Town

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The Mediterranean - with sandy beaches
Cape Town's exclusive beaches lure the rich and beautiful to their fine shores.

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Garden Route

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Family-friendly with handsome forests
The warmer influence of the Indian Ocean makes for ideal swimming conditions.

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Overberg

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A whale of a time
The finest location in the world for land-based whale watching.

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KwaZulu-Natal

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Sub-tropical splendor
Natal's coast offers inviting temperate waters and a wealth of marine life.

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Bazaruto Archipelago

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Meet the rare dugong
Snorkeling and scuba divings pursuits flourish in the waters of the Bazaruto archipelago.

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Quirimbas Archipelago

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Private islands & pristine reefs
Castaway like Robinson Crusoe, but with all the indulgences of a king.

Experiences to Savor

A scuba diver observes schools of fish teeming in a coral reef.

Sundowners in Camps Bay

The Camps Bay promenade looks directly over the suburb's main beach. The lively promenade sports a colorful collection of upmarket beachside cafes and eateries, ideal for 'sundowners' (cocktails or drinks at sunset) or people watching as the sun sinks beyond the Atlantic Ocean.

A Kaleidescope of corals

The Bazaruto and Quirimbas archipelagos boast some of the finest, most pristine coral reefs in the world. Beautifully preserved and absolutely captivating to explore, be sure to include a scuba diving excursion or even a snorkeling expedition on your African beach vacation in Mozambique.

Spotting whales in Walker Bay

Between the months of June and November, Southern Right whales convene in the waters of Walker Bay in staggering numbers. This stretch of the Western Cape, known as the coastal Overberg, is the best location in the world to enjoy land-based whale watching as you unwind on the beach.

FAQ

Are there African beaches that I can enjoy during the wintertime?
Yes - while Cape Town and the Garden Route are still pleasant to visit in the winter months, they do not enjoy 'beach friendly' weather. It is therefore best to either head to KwaZulu-Natal or Mozambique, where you can actually enjoy better weather (milder temperatures and less humidity) than you would in the summertime.
Which is the finest beach in Garden Route?
The Plettenberg Bay area hosts a slew of Blue Flag beaches, including Robberg 5, Keurbooms, Nature's Valley, Lookout and The Dunes. With such a variety of safe, stunning beaches, it remains the finest beach destination in the Garden Route.
What are the water temperatures like in Cape Town?
The waters of the Atlantic that caress the shores of the Cape Peninsula are notoriously frigid, but the brave can nevertheless endeavor an enjoyable swim. December - March is the best time for swimming, with temperatures peaking at 20°C (68°F) in February.
What about sharks?
Shark attacks in South Africa are very rare, but shark spotters are nevertheless employed in the Cape Town area, mostly for the sake of surfers. On the East Coast of KwaZulu-Natal, shark nets protect the bays.
What does 'Blue Flag' status mean?
Blue Flag status is awarded to beaches by the Foundation for Environmental Education that meet stringent standards of water quality, safety, environmental education and information and the provision of services and general environmental management. At the time of writing, South Africa boasts 45 official blue flag beaches.
Are there areas where it is not safe to swim?
Yes - the ocean is an unpredictable and enigmatic force that should be duly respected. In South Africa, always swim where there are life guards and within the demarcated safety zone.
Besides swimming, are there other beach-based activities available?
Yes - depending on the area which you visit. A tropical beach destination like Mozambique offers snorkeling, scuba diving, kayaking, SUP and more, while beach activities in South Africa lean more toward whale watching, swimming with seals, shark cage diving and surfing.
What is the best beach location in KwaZulu-Natal?
Umhlanga and Ballito are great beach destinations as they are not too far from Durban (easy access and a variety of activities) and the water is wonderfully warm. These beaches currently have pilot status. For scuba diving or snorkeling and something wilder, head further north up the coast.
What is a 'pilot status beach'?
Pilot status is a stepping stone toward full Blue Flag status. 22 of South Africa's beaches currently enjoy pilot status.
Is South Africa or Mozambique a better beach destination?
It depends on what you are after. For a tropical island-style beach holiday characterized by leisure and snorkeling / scuba diving activities, Mozambique is your best bet. For a beach holiday that can include activities a bit beyond the beach - like city tours in Cape Town, or wildlife encounters in the Garden Route - South Africa is the superior choice.
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Wildlife Gallery

The big five, antelope & other mammals

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Client Reviews

Reviews from clients who have been on safaris and tours with African Sky

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Articles

Travel topics and articles about Southern Africa, written by African Sky staff