South Africa Tourism have launched their new local campaign called Shot Left. It encourages South Africans to take short breaks, long, lazy holidays or just a day out to discover and play in this wonderful country. www.shotleft.co.za
If time is an issue, you can save lots of it by flying to the following cities where there is a City Lodge at the airport for your convenience.
Cape Town, Johannesburg, Port Elizabeth & Bloemfontein.
Here is how you could explore South Africa with City Lodge Hotels
Cape Town is so awesome lets start there.
Spoiled for choice after landing at Cape Town International, you can chose your area and level of luxury by booking into any of 7 City Lodge Hotels. https://www.citylodge.co.za/ctresult.php
If the 24 hour vibe of Casinos and entertainment is your thing, the City Lodge at Grand West is for you.
The Lodge at the V& A Waterfront is ideally situated for exploring the city bowl and Atlantic Seaboard.
The Courtyard Hotel in Mowbray offers tranquility and is central to everywhere in Cape Town.
Pinelands Lodge is within walking distance of the Mowbray Golf club. Wherever you decide to stay, all the hotels are within easy driving distance to the top attractions of Cape Town. Make sure you experience Table Mountain and the Cable Car, Kirstenbosch National Botanical Gardens, a drive along Chapmans Peak, the Waterfront for relaxation and retail therapy, a township tour, Cape Point and at least one of the many wine routes.
Be sure to check the Cape Town Events Calendar to see what is on as the city hosts numerous Expos, fun events and festivals. Whatever your passion, from culture and heritage, watersports, nature or adventure, Cape Town has lots to offer. Take a look at http://www.capetown.travel/ for ideas and assistance.
From Cape Town, hire a car and take a drive to George in the Garden Route. You can get there in about 4 hours on the N2 or take a more leisurely drive via the wine regions and towns of the R62. http://www.route62.co.za/. I would definitely go via R62
The Road Lodge in George is the perfect place from which to explore the Garden Route. A day drive to Mossel Bay for some beach time ,or a trip up to Oudtshoorn to the Cango Caves, Ostrich Farm and perhaps a trip up the magnificent Swartberg Pass.
From George an early start heading towards Port Elizabeth will ensure you have time to stop in Knysna and Plettenberg Bay, take a detour down to Natures Valley and stop at Bloukrans to watch or brave a bungy jump. The Garden Route has so much on offer, make your selections here. http://tourismcapetown.co.za/leisure-travel/region/cape-garden-route-and-klein-karoo
In Port Elizabeth you have a choice of 5 City Lodge Hotels to choose from. One at the airport or 4 on the beach. P.E as it is known locally, or Nelson Mandela Bay as the tourism office is called http://www.nmbt.co.za/ is a great base for discovering the Eastern Cape. A trip to the Addo Elelphant National Park is what I would do.
From P.E continue your road trip heading towards East London or Buffalo City as it is affectionately known. Beautiful lagoons, beaches and mountains, rivers, heritage and eco tourism, this area is great for the outdoor enthusiast and nature lover. http://www.buffalocity.gov.za/visitors/activities.stm
From East London we say goodbye to the the coast and the car catch a plane to Bloemfontein.
Here you can stay in either the City Lodge or the Road Lodge and discover the judicial capital of South Africa in the Free State Province. I would take a walk through the city to see the historical buildings and go the the Franklin Nature Reserve which is in on Naval Hill and affords a view of the city. It is home to giraffe, blue wildebeest and many species of birds. I would also make sure I got to Bainsvlei to the Cheetah Experience http://www.cheetahexperience.com/index.html, It is about 10km out of town.
From Bloemfontein we take a drive through the open country to Kimberley, just 165km away.
Here we stay at the Road Lodge and enjoy some down time at the adjacent Flamingo Casino and Entertainment Centre. I would visit the Big Hole and learn about the diamond days and though generally not a fan of guided tours, in Kimberley I would book to see all the cultural and historical offerings and to hear the stories of ghosts, skirmishes and the way of life in bygone days.
From Kimberley it is a short flight to Johannesburg, City of Gold, hub of South Africa.
Jozi at it is known by its many fans offers a choice of 18 City Lodge Hotels to pick your ideal spot to engage with this vibrant city.
Cosmopolitan in the extreme visit http://to.ly/oSzx for efficient assistance in finding what Jozi offers to suit your taste. I would do the Soweto Tour, visit the Apartheid Museum and explore the inner city. For this I would insist my guide is Mzanzi Girl, see her blog here, http://www.mzansigirl.com/ as no one I know has more knowledge or passion for Joburg than she does.
From Joburg we take a short 120km drive to Rustenburg. The Road Lodge here is where I would base myself for a day trip to Sun City and a visit to the Pilanesberg National Park. http://www.parksnorthwest.co.za/pilanesberg/
A 350km drive from Rustenburg to the Road Lodge in Polokwane in Limpopo Province. http://www.golimpopo.com/capricorn . A visit to the Arend Dieperink Museum and then on to the Mapakmangat Caves to immerse myself in the origins of man would be first on my list in this area.
An African 300km drive from Polokwane through the mountains of the Panorama to the City Lodge in Nelspruit.
The perfect town for proximity to the Kruger National Park. http://www.sanparks.org/parks/kruger/ I would stay here until I ran out of money and they evicted me. Before that happened, a day drive through scenic Sabie up to Pilgrims Rest, another gold rush town, to explore and immerse yourself in another time and place.
From Nelspruit, a flight to King Shaka Airport in Kwa-Zulu Natal and off to the City Lodge in Durban. A choice of 4 hotels, I would have some time at the City Lodge to visit friends in the area and do some serious material shopping in downtown Durban, hit the markets and enjoy the Durban weather.
Then a day or 2 at the City Lodge in Umhlanga, just 20km North of Durban for a little luxury, beaches, walks, shopping and eating out with friends who stay near by.
A 150 km trip to Richards Bay to the Road Lodge there. From here it is just 60km to the iSimangaliso Wetlands Park, http://to.ly/p0HT a World Heritage site, a place I want to explore, and 80km to the Hluhluwe-Umfolozi Reserve, http://to.ly/p0I6 another place I could tick off from my bucket list.
That is what I would do. Then, on returning home, I would start planning my next trip.