South Africa is a country that gets the heart racing, be it with entrancing sights or with exciting activities this is a place that truly inspires adventure in those who visit.
Almost everyone who visits South Africa wants to get their feet wet by one of many pristine beaches, but those a bit more daring may opt to take the plunge and go cage-diving with sharks. Entering the domain of one of the ocean's most feared creatures, the Great White Shark, cage-diving is a perfectly safe activity but is still one of the most heart-racing ones to experience.
Enter the domain of this great marine predator and observe them up close as they approach to check you out. With large numbers of seals, birds and, of course, ocean fish found by South Africa's bays and islands, there is a very good chance of seeing these famous creatures up close and with an almost year-round presence this is always an option for your stay. Alternatively, if you're not keen to get in the cage, you can observe the sharks from the boat and still get a good look.
South Africa is also renowned for diving along its South Coast with an alluring combination of reefs, shipwrecks and marine life to encourage visitors to take the plunge. Suitable for novice and experienced divers alike, the experience is a gripping one, with the Aliwal Shoal (a fossilised sand dune) claiming passing ships and hosting two wrecks you can visit 30m down on the ocean's floor. Also worth a visit are the Protea Banks which host friendlier sharks and majestic rays who elegantly glide around the reef.
For a slower paced adventure, take to the Panorama Route in Mpumalanga and witness one breathtaking view after another on a route that will take you through some of South Africa's most diverse scenery. Starting from the small town of Graskop, traverse the clifftops of the Blyde River Canyon, the world's largest 'green canyon', and gawp at the impossibly perfect scenery before you, including water of the deepest blue. Reach God's Window and walk in the thick mist forest that is usually amongst the clouds.
Be sure to stop off for a look at the Bourke's Luck Potholes which have formed where the Blyde and Truer rivers meet at the start of the Blyde River Canyon. These huge potholes have combined to make a unique formation and offer a unique and worthwhile photo opportunity for the budding explorer. Along the way, explore the winding Echo Caves; fish for yellowtail at the Ohrigstad Dam Reserve and keep an eye out for a host of wildlife including bushbabies and chacma baboons.
As you may predict, surfing is a huge part of South African culture, with popular surf spots located up and down the coastline - from the colder Cape waters to the welcoming warmth of the Indian Ocean. Why not experience the enviable life of a surfer and enjoy the combination of hot weather, cool waves and a true brotherhood vibe shared between those who take to the board.
If you prefer the sand to the sea, or just fancy trying your hand at a rising trend, then perhaps dune boarding is more up your street. It's no surprise that so many locals choose to get their kicks this way, with a selection of some of the world's highest beach dunes offering a very real adrenaline rush and forgiving landing on the soft sand should you wipe out.
Fed up of keeping your feet on the ground? Perhaps a canopy tour is the way for you to go! Another opportunity to explore the lush greenery of a South African forest, canopy tours will give you a sky-high perspective as you shoot across wires, through the trees, from platform to platform. Get up close and personal with the forest on a new level between zooming at speed for over 150m at a time on some occasions.
Two new canopy tours worth noting at the Drakensberg and Magoebaskloof tours. The former showcases the spectacular scenery found at Dragon's Mountain and includes the first elevated rock face walkway for a truly memorable experience. The Magoebaskloof Canopy Tour should also be considered thanks for it's slides and viewpoints which create an original perspective to see more than three imposing waterfalls among ancient cliffs and indigenous forest.