The 8 Most Instagrammable Places in South Africa
We would be lying if we didn't admit that visuals play a huge part in decision-making when it comes to choosing where to travel. If you are after a serious adventure that will also fill your camera roll with envy-inducing photos, South Africa won’t let you down! In fact, South Africa's natural beauty has earned it fifth place on the list of the most Insta-worthy destinations on Earth.
From dramatic mountain panoramas to mind-blowing wilderness vistas and some of the loveliest beaches we've ever seen, here are the best spots in SA to snap breathtaking photos. Let’s light up that feed!
1) BO KAAP, CAPE TOWN
Anything bright and/or colourful usually kills it on the 'gram, so there is no surprise that our first pick for SA's most Instagrammable spot is Bo Kaap. Formerly known as the Malay Quarter, this distinct neighbourhood of Cape Town is the historic centre of Cape Malay culture. Famous for its painted houses from the 17th and 19th centuries, cobbled streets, beautiful Muslim mosques and spicy cuisine, there is plenty to see, taste and explore. If South Africa is the Rainbow Nation, then Bo Kaap is the centrepiece! But while these streets look made for Insta, there is so much more to Bo-Kaap than just pretty pictures. Give yourself a solid chunk of time here to learn about rich Muslim culture and if you can, try bobotie, a delicious Cape Malay dish of spiced minced meat and an egg-based topping (one of South Africa’s unofficial national dishes!)
2) BLYDE RIVER CANYON, MPUMALANGA
Situated along the aptly-named Panorama Route, Blyde River Canyon is the third largest canyon in the world after the Grand Canyon in the USA and the Fish River Canyon in Namibia. Traditionally known as Motlatse Canyon, viewpoints offer unparalleled views of the sparkling Blyde River winding through red sandstone cliffs. The canyon's mighty scale and beauty make a trip here absolutely worth it, which is why we've included a pit-stop on Day 3 of our South Africa Adventure small group tour.
3) THE GOLDEN MILE, DURBAN
The Golden Mile (also known simply as 'The Mile') is a photogenic stretch of beachfront in the sunny city of Durban. Forget the Mile-High club, this seemingly endless stretch of golden sand promises beach bums, ocean lovers and Instagrammers an escape like no other amongst the sub-tropical sunshine and warm waters of the Indian Ocean. The good news is that most of the Mile's beaches are protected year-round by shark nets and lifeguards, and if you are keen on surfing then the Mile is the ultimate destination for you. Pack your camera and sunscreen!
5) KRUGER NATIONAL PARK
If you're travelling to South Africa it is almost guaranteed that a safari will be on your bucket list. South Africa is full of parks and reserves that deliver authentic safari experiences, but none are mightier than the Kruger. Ranked the best wildlife experience in Africa, staying overnight in Kruger National Park promises remoteness, tranquillity and absolute seclusion in the beauty of nature. There are few experiences more breathtaking than seeing herds of majestic elephants or prides of lions in their natural habitat while out on a game drive, which is why this is included in our South Africa small group tour! A trip to Kruger will do wonders for your camera and your soul.
5) ORLANDO TOWERS, SOWETO
Once the cooling towers for the Orlando Power Station, these 33-storey twin towers are synonymous to Johannesburg's neighbourhood of Soweto and are a major tourist destination in South Africa. The towers are covered in brightly coloured murals, one depicting images from township culture, the other used for unique advertising campaigns. Since 2008 the towers have also been converted into a vertical adventure facility that offers bungee jumping, abseiling, zip-lining, and pendulum swinging, making for awesome photos as brave tourists chase adrenaline.
6) CHAPMAN’S PEAK DRIVE
Affectionately known as Chappies, Chapman's Peak Drive is up there with some of the world's most scenic driving routes i.e. Australia's Great Ocean Road. This coastal drive twists and turns along steep cliffs and beaches, offering great vantage points of South Africa's dramatic Atlantic coastline. While being a spectacular Insta location in its own right, Chappies is gateway to other picturesque spots like Hout Bay, the Cape of Good Hope, and the artistic country town of Noordhoek. Day 11 of our South Africa Adventure includes a full Cape Peninsula tour, road-tripping along Chapman's Peak Drive to these places before a night out in Cape Town! Find out more about our South Africa tour itinerary and inclusions here.
7) BOULDERS BEACH, CAPE TOWN
Boulder's Beach is THE place to go if you want a winning pic that will have you the envy of everyone back home. Located a short trip outside of Cape Town, this calm bay is home to a protected colony of native African penguins. When they aren't swimming freely in the sea they are waddling adorably on the beach, and the curious cuties will happily pose for your photos. Don’t be surprised to see them gracefully glide past as you cool off in the ocean! While friendly, remember they are still wild animals, so please do not feed or harass them. There is a small conservation fee to gain access to the beach, but this means it is rarely packed.
8) TABLE MOUNTAIN, CAPE TOWN
Topping off our list of South Africa's most Instagrammable locations has to be Cape Town's iconic Table Mountain. Known as “Hoerikwaggo” or “Mountain in the sea” to the nomadic Khoi people, legend has it that this flat-topped mountain is where God dwells - once you take in the magnificent views from the peak, you will understand why! Table Mountain is photogenic from all angles, but we highly recommend you take the cable car up, especially if you aren't keen on hiking. It is up in the heavens that you will witness the clouds part like cotton candy, blessing you with views of the Mother City that will have your jaw on the floor.
Eager to visit these locations & snap some amazing photos along the way? Check out our South Africa group tour where we take you to ALL of the places on this list, and more! With an expertly crafted itinerary, all activities and a bunch of meals included, the guidance of a knowledgable group leader, full end-to-end support, and a new group of friends to make memories with, we are the experts in travelling South Africa with a group.
Want to learn more about this beautiful country? Find our South Africa travel blogs here.