Colin Cowie's Big FIve

A South African Adventure

Colin Cowie shares his top five can’t miss South African experiences.

As a South African myself, I never turn down an opportunity to share some of my favorite things about the country I call home. Whether you’re planning a romantic honeymoon adventure or an exciting getaway with family or friends, South Africa has so much to offer. Just like the iconic Big Five you’re sure to see on a South African safari – the African elephant, rhino, Cape buffalo, lion and leopard – here are the Big Five experiences I think no trip to this diverse and exciting country should be without.


What would a trip to South Africa be without a safari? Chances are you’ll be jet-lagged by the time you arrive, so take advantage of your internal clock, grab a cup of coffee and head out on an early-morning game ride.

In a country known for its amazing wildlife and incredible selection of camps and lodges, you’re sure to find an outfitter that fits your travel needs and your budget. If you want to splurge on a trip that combines unbeatable luxury with experienced guides and prime location, I always recommend one of the Singita camps, situated throughout Kruger National Park. These camps are the gold standard when it comes to roughing it with style, with many of their properties ranking in the top ten of Travel + Leisure’s World’s Best Hotels in the past few years. 

For an authentic but luxurious experience, go on a tented safari adventure with Tydon Safaris in Kruger National Park. You’ll be out in nature without sacrificing comfortable accommodations and incredible hospitality. If you choose to travel to the Eastern Cape, I recommend Amakhala, a more wallet-friendly choice that doesn’t skimp on the luxury or the experience. The reserve features a unique conservation initiative as they work to restore native flora and fauna to a region damaged by decades of cattle ranching.

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