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Northern Cape

Photo of Northern Cape

About Northern Cape

Bordering Namibia, the Northern Cape, South Africa’s largest province, is also one of its least populated. With a population of just one million, each 'town' (if you can call them that) is several hundred kilometres apart. These open landscapes, stretching as far as the eye can see, encompasses the Namakwa, Kalahari and Upper Karoo deserts – whose vast open settings are home to lions, zebra, oryx, impressive game and birdlife. Enjoy a drink in Kimberly, the Northern Cape’s capital and former heartland of South Africa’s diamond rush, or embark on a safari drive. From dune surfing, learning about ancient civilisations, to visiting sites of geological significance, our collection of the best places to stay in the Northern Cape showcase the absolute height of luxury lodges.

WHAT NOT TO MISS

  • Visit the Namakwa desert during its flower season, between July and September, when the entire desert floor is transformed into a riot of colour and flowers.
  • Follow the Shipwreck Tour, a challenging 4-5 hour guided drive, a rollercoaster of a ride through undulating dunes in search of the skeletons of shipwrecks washed up on shore decades ago - a photographer’s dream.
  • Head out in search of marine mammals, from seals to dolphins, and humpback whales in season (June to September).
  • Follow in the footsteps of South Africa’s diamond miners, and hike the Diamond Coast trail.
  • Rafting along the Orange River and Augrabies Falls is an exhilarating day out, where rafters can spot egrets, herons, cormorants, and swifts, as well as taking in some epic views.

Our collection of the best places to stay in the Northern Cape showcases the finest hotels to experience the rugged beauty of the Northern Cape.

WHERE TO STAY IN THE NORTHERN CAPE

FOR SOMETHING TRULY SPECIAL

There is no shortage of ways to explore the pristine nature surrounding Tswalu Kalahari. Ride, walk, or 4x4 - head out in search of leopard, springbok, meerkat, and much more! Ultimate luxury, this five-star stay with five-star spa treatments, completes the package with commendable conservation efforts and fine dining.

Travel Information

  • Typical of desert and semi-desert areas, the Nothern Cape’s annual rainfall is minimal, with the region’s westernmost region, Namaqualand, exploding into a riot of colour, following the first rain’s of spring. In the summer, temperatures range from 34 to 40ºC; in the winter, a pleasant 26ºC. Though do bear in mind, evenings are chilly, so bring something warm to wrap up in.
  • Kimberly Airport, the Northern Cape’s capital, and Upington Airport, both receive daily flights from Cape Town and Johannesburg.
  • And as with much of South Africa, the Northern Cape is a great self-drive destination. If you'd prefer to travel overland, we'd recommend out partners, Rentalcars.

Still not sure?

  • Why not contact one of our friendly gurus for advice.

Best Hotels in Northern Cape

  • Tswalu Kalahari Northern Cape 15 rooms from £2607

    Five-star lodge with excellent conservation efforts and immersive spa treatments. Choose from riding, walking, or 4x4 safaris to spot the local wildlife. Rooms are very romantic, and there's even the option to sleep under the stars. The full package, an unforgettable stay.

    Eco break  -  Commendable conservation efforts, guests are encouraged to get involved during their stay
    Romantic Break  -  Ultimate luxury stay in the heart of the African bush
    Great walks  -  Guided bush walks
    Swimming Pool  -  Outdoor pool
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