Camping Spots in SA

From the Karoo to the coast and everything in-between, South Africa boasts a diverse landscape and with it some stunning camping spots. SPAR Savour has scouted some of the best locations to pitch up  

Some of our greatest memories are with family and friends enjoying South Africa’s back yard. Reignite those nostalgic feelings and have a look through our list of camping spots in South Africa. Each campsite has its own reasons for making the list - from hiking trails, rivers for swimming, mountain bike trails to expanses of untouched landscape to simply take in. You will find great camping spots within an hour or two from Cape Town, Johannesburg and Durban.   View our destinations:   


Cape Columbine

This is the most westerly destination of the Western Cape. Declared a nature reserve in December 1973, Cape Columbine is located near the fishing village of Paternoster. A magical fact about this reserve is that it boasts the last manually controlled lighthouse in South Africa. Take in the charm of this seaside campsite and hike beautiful trails littered with West Coast fynbos and Karoo succulents. There are also unforgettable sunsets across the Atlantic Ocean to soak up. 

Distance: about 90 min from Cape Town
Cost:: call 022 752 2718 for more information


Summer is the best time for a visit to Beaverlac. With its deep rock pools and beautiful waterfalls, this picturesque natural heritage site is an ideal cool down from the heat. Look out for rock paintings on the caves around Grootfontein farm that have been preserved by the National Monuments Act. Beaverlac is a well equipped campsite with a shop that sells wood, snacks, drinks and other basic items. A perfectly tranquil getaway.
Distance: 2 hrs and 14 min from Cape Town
Cost: R15 per car, adults R45, kids (aged 4-11) R25, kids under 3 FREE 


Usually reserved for weekend trips to see snow during the coldest bouts of South Africa’s winter, Matroosberg is a great retreat in summer too. It’s location is idyllic under the shady pine trees beside the Spek River. Tranquility at its best in this fairly small and peaceful camping area, which is a little way from the chalets and houses on the reserve. Treat your inner-adventure junkie to activities ranging from abseiling, kloofing and target shooting. With rock pools within walking distance from the site, laze in the sun and cool off with an afternoon swim. The best of both worlds is offered at Matroosberg. 
Distance: 2 hrs from Cape Town Airport
Cost: Adults R50, kids (aged 3-13) R30


Ilanga Resort

The East Coast offers the warm and inviting Indian Ocean for a good beach session. Ilanga Resort is directly adjacent to Banana Beach to enjoy surf, sun and sand. No need to fear shark attacks either as Ilanga has sharknet-protected beaches and lifeguards on duty. If the sea doesn’t tickle your fancy, there is a freshwater swimming pool on site for you to enjoy. Pitch your tent in this resort and hear the waves crashing at nighttime. In addition, this area boasts an abundance of birdlife with Loeries and the African Green Pigeons (Papagaai Duif) as a highlight. The perfect camping trip for the whole family. 
Distance: 1 hr from Durban
Cost: prices change from high season to low season, visit their website for more information


Situated in the southern part of the uKhahlamba-Drakensberg Park is South Africa’s first cultural and environmental World Heritage Site. With such a picturesque setting surrounded by the Hodgson’s Peaks, Cobham takes you back to the original style of camping with an expanse of land for you to choose the perfect spot to pitch your tent. The many Cobham Hiking Trails range from gentle ambles taking in the glorious mountainous surrounds to strenuous day and overnight hikes starting at the Sani Pass. With rivers in the area, fishing and swimming are must-do activities. 
Distance: Approximately 150 km from Pietermaritzburg
Cost: contact for more information 

Cape Vidal

Cape Vidal falls within the St Lucia Marine Reserve in the Isimangaliso Wetland Park World Heritage Site. The campsites are located in the dune forest near the beach. A popular destination for fishing, spear fishing and snorkeling, the marine life at Cape Vidal is bountiful. Water sports are also a main feature with a designated launch site for ski boats. If ocean adventures aren’t enough, Lake St Lucia boasts a variety of game including reedbuck, hippos, crocodile, buffalo and grassland birds. This is a real marine life and wildlife adventure. 
Distance: 2 hrs and 30 min from Durban
Cost: click  here for more information 


Mountain Sanctuary Park

Positioned on the rolling hills of the northern Magaliesburg, Mountain Sanctuary Park is a wonderful escape from Joburg’s hustle and bustle. Find rejuvenation in the calm surroundings and lookout for wildlife that have been protected in this privately owned reserve. Hiking trails in this are also very popular not to mention the crystal-clear rock pools to cool down in. If mountain biking is a must for you, there is a 12km-route to try out. 
Distance: 111 km from Sandton, Johannesburg
Cost: call 014 534 0114 for more information 

Ezemvelo Nature Reserve

Experience a biologically diverse area that is a mixture of both grassland and savanna biomes. The reserve is home to 22 plant families and more than 286 bird species making it a bird watcher’s dream. Small and large mammals roam the reserve including kudu, leopard, aardwolf and brown hyena. Activities include nature walks, horseback safaris, cycling, birding tours and guided river trips. 
Distance: 1 hr from OR Tambo International Airport and 45 mins from Pretoria
Cost: call 013 680 1399 for more information

Bushwillow Tented Camp

Situated at the foot of the Zwartkops Mountains, Bush Willow offers an experience of camping without the fuss. No need to bring your own tent, they have erected walk-in tents that sleep between four and six people. Hot showers and a small kitchenette are included in the tent. Enjoy an evening next to the fire taking in the aroma of meat on the braai while sipping a glass of wine. Fishing and game drives are in the near vicinity of Bush Willow. 
Distance: 30 mins from Johannesburg and Pretoria
Cost: contact for more information