So many travel choices open up when you’ve only got yourself to answer to. With no-one else’s quirky habits and irrational fears to take into consideration, you are free to choose on a whim. And travel exactly as you please. What is overlooked are the annoying downsides for Solo Travellers in Africa. From safety considerations, to the extra cost of transfers and private guides. As well as the dreaded single supplements…
We’ll always do our best to get intrepid solo travellers where they want to go. But sometimes the logistics and costs simply don’t add up. From our experience, we find that there are some places, and ways of travelling, that work better than others for solo holidays in South Africa.
Below we outline some safaris & friendly hotels in Africa where solo travelers will feel at home.
The above article gives a candid low-down on the best ways to travel. And it also showcases some possible safaris which you might like to consider.
Solo Holidays to South Africa
There’s no reason not to travel around South Africa independently. But we reckon that the driving distances make a pure self-drive slightly daunting for most people. (Though it well could be an option for a few days.)
That leaves other modes of transport. Unfortunately, there is surprisingly little choice in group tours. Some of the Garden Route tours have guaranteed departures which single people can join. But you are unlikely to be able to get to the more remote or unique areas without paying a heavy price for a private tour or transfer.
The answer may be to join some scheduled tours in Cape Town. Or take a multi-day tour along the Garden Route. Then add a safari to a small lodge, which is a convivial activity by its very nature?
Another option is to combine some scheduled day tours in Cape Town with private transfers to a convivial country lodge which offers a range of activities in-house?
Accommodation for Solo Travellers in Africa
So which lodge or hotel should you choose? The selection below features hotels and game lodges in South Africa where the single supplement ranges from a welcome 'zero' (yay!) To not more than 25%-30%.
However there are many other wonderful options which could also work for you. These are small, friendly lodges where the owners are very hands-on and happy to chat. Sometimes they meet their guests for evening drinks. At others dining is around a communal table. Often there are activities on offer where you can meet other guests if you wish to. Chat to us about your needs.
Safari Trips for Solo Travellers in Africa
A safari is a sociable experience by its very nature. Guests from around the world, and all walks of life, tend to mix easily on game vehicles. Dining is often around a communal dining table. And you are united by a common interest in the natural world. Thus, most of our game lodges would be good for single travelers. Especially the ones mentioned below which don’t charge much of a single supplement.
Handy Tip: Consider Botswana, Zimbabwe or Zambia in Green or Shoulder season
We don't specifically mention camps in Botswana, Zambia or Zimbabwe because many don't have single supplements outside of peak season. So there are simply too many to mention!
Safari Trips for Solo Travellers to Botswana or Namibia
In Botswana, and Namibia, mobile safaris with no more than eight other guests are also a great option for single travelers. They offer a more rounded understanding of the country, its landscape and its people than fly-in safaris. Though far from cheap, the ‘per night’ cost is lower than lodge accommodation. Comfort levels are high and the trips are fully serviced. With camp assistant taking care of all the chores. But, as with all group travel, mobile safaris will appeal most to those who are flexible and adaptable. Especially about departure dates!
At the opposite end of the spectrum, if you have a lower budget but more time, then a small group camping safari will get you to most of the ‘must-see’ icons of the country. These can be semi-participative trips so less luxurious than our normal suggestions. But they could be ideal for more easy-going travelers?
Zambia Or Zimbabwe Trips for Solo Travellers
The relaxed and authentic safari ambience in Zambia and Zimbabwe means that these are wonderful destinations for solo travellers. Add to that the focus on walking safaris and getting out of the vehicle - by boat, canoe or on foot. And it all adds up to a good recipe for those travelling alone.
Solo Travel in Kenya
The small and friendly safari camps on Kenya's private ranches attract lots of solo travelers. Many of the camps charge no supplement. Plus the popularity of the country means that most flights are charged ‘per person’ rather than ‘per chartered plane’. We’ve run into lots of single people in the Kenyan camps, from wildlife artists to off-duty models.
- A safari is a sociable experience by its very nature. The shared sightings get re-lived over coffee and around the camp-fire.
- Safari activities are typically shared with others so there's naturally people to chat to about the experience.
- No single supplement is charged in the green & shoulder seasons in The norm in Zambia, Zimbabwe & Botswana. ie all months except July to October.
Thank you for arranging such an excellent trip!!"I would like to thank you for arranging such an excellent trip to see the wildflowers in the Cape, and especially for selecting our guide. He was perfect in all respects. He knew where to take us, knew the identities of most of the flowers and plants, and was a font of knowledge about southern Africa. As for the flowers, we couldn’t have picked a better year or a better time, and your itinerary got us into some of the most spectacular scenes, better than we had ever imagined. " Mr Bell
Great Recommendations"I am into the details and ask lots of questions and I got all the info that I needed (and more) very quickly, which enabled my review all of Cedarberg’s recommendations and check for alternatives. I am very pleased to say that I changed none and all of the recommendations were 1st class. " Mr Ian Crispin, UK
Ginny made excellent suggestions"Ginny made excellent suggestions for our holiday ensuring we had a good variety of things to do which suited the whole family. " Mrs Mary Creayen, UK
Africa Travel Specialist
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- Single SupplementsMost safari camps in Zambia & Botswana have no single supplement outside of Peak Season
- Private ToursVery Expensive for Solo Travellers