Adventures in and around Bloemfontein

Bloemfontein is fairly flat and boasts excellent weather, so it’s no wonder thrill-seekers make the most of its adventure activities. Whether you’re into hiking, skydiving, watersports or 4×4 trails, there’s an itinerary for you.

White river rafting on the Ash River near Clarens is a popular adventure option. The level 3 and 4 rapids are not dependent on rainfall and are available 365 days a year.

Bloemfontein residents love their sport. Rugby is as popular as football, and hockey enjoys good support, while cricket lures the crowds during the summer months. However, there are many more adventurous activities to be enjoyed outside of conventional sporting disciplines.

Locals say that the Free State province is so flat you can see right into next week! Flat terrain in the south of the province and around Bloemfontein gives way to highlands on the Lesotho border to the east. Such ideal terrain, combined with South Africa’s beautiful weather, opens up myriad opportunities for those adventurous at heart.

Bloemfontein-based aerial adventures include plane flips, skydiving, hot air ballooning, paragliding and gliding.

Kayaking on the Gariep Dam is popular, while the Vaal River is suitable for more

Port Elizabeth Museum, Eastern Cape

From huge whale skeletons that float in the air, an eccentric pipe collection, all manner of snakes and a cannon recovered from a famous shipwreck to an exciting outdoor dinosaur display where the exhibits ‘come alive’, the Port Elizabeth Museum at Bayworld caters for a whole family’s tastes and preferences.

The Port Elizabeth Museum provided snake serum for World War II Allied Forces serving in North Africa.

The Port Elizabeth Museum at Bayworld had decidedly lacklustre beginnings back in 1856 when few of the town’s 7000 residents could be bothered with historical collections. However, 50 years later, a firecracker museum director called Mr FW Fitzsimons turned it into a dynamic space.

Suddenly, the formerly fast-asleep and run-down museum was offering intriguing exhibitions of live snakes and something called a ‘magic lantern show’ – silent movies in their early stage, complete with a piano player providing the sound track from the side of the room.

In fact, the snakes were so popular that a dedicated Snake Park was built on the new museum grounds and the first handler became a bit of a legend. Snakes bit him at least once a

Kimberley, Northern Cape

Kimberley, thanks to the fevered diamond rush of the 1870s, has a glittering past. Take a guided tour of a once-operational diamond mine, which descends a staggering 840m below the earth. For those who prefer being above ground, visit the city’s glittering choice of jewellery stores.

There were actually five ‘big holes’ in Kimberley – diamond mines that mined volcanic kimberlite pipes. Other than the Big Hole, they’ve now mostly been filled in.

Kimberley, the capital of the Northern Cape province, is known as the Diamond City.

Start your exploration of the city at its main attraction: the Big Hole. Imagine a hand-dug hole the size of eight football fields and you have some idea of the labour that went into creating the Big Hole.

Adjacent to the Big Hole is the Kimberley Mine Museum, which brings to life the way the city was during the frenetic days of the diamond rush. Many of the buildings here are originals that have been moved over the years to this spot. If you are not claustrophobic, take the guided tour of a once-operational diamond mine which descends a staggering 840m below the

Tanzania Wildlife Adventure


  • wildlife viewing in Ngorongoro Crater
  • Tarangire National Park
  • Lake Manyara National Park

Tour description provided by World Expeditions

After a climb on Kilimanjaro or Meru, there are few better ways to glimpse the highlights of northern Tanzanian wildlife than to join this superb safari. The world famous Ngorongoro Crater is considered the “Garden of Eden” of Tanzania in terms of game viewing and we spend a day doing just that . Other highlights while on safari include huge herds of elephants in Tarangire National Park and abundant birdlife at Lake Manyara.

What’s included

  • 3 breakfasts, 3 lunches and 2 dinners
  • Private safari vehicle
  • Services of english speaking driver-guide
  • National park entrance fees and conservation fees valued at us$220
  • Accommodation in comfortable safari camp with permanent tents and private bathroom (2 nights)
  • Comfortable 3 star hotel in arusha (1 night)


Day 1 Transfer from Arusha, afternoon safari
Early this morning, your guide will pick you up from your hotel to depart for Tarangire National Park. Lunch will be provided on arrival followed

the other Japan: secret beaches of Okinawa and the Southwest Islands

Okinawa and the Southwest Islands comprise one of Japan’s pretty little secrets – a side of Japan that differs from the mainland in culture and pace. They take a little more time and effort to access, but the rewards for getting there are gorgeous semi-tropical, white-sand beaches and clear turquoise water; often on tiny, rural islands that cultivate fields and fields of sugarcane.

If you’ve come as far as Okinawa-hontō (Okinawa Prefecture’s main island), you’re merely a day trip away from uninhabited islands. If you’ve got more time to spare, Naha (the prefectural capital) is the jumping-off point for the island chain’s further-flung destinations. Here are some of the region’s secret beaches.

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Gahi-jima (嘉比島) & Agenashiku-jima (安慶名敷島)

Part of the Kerama island group, this pair of uninhabited islets off of Zamami-jima will realise your castaway-for-a-day fantasy. Bring a picnic of onigiri (rice balls) and iced green tea foraged from Naha’s convenience stores, and a sun hat, as there are no facilities and little shade.

Getting there: you can easily visit these small islets on a day trip from Naha. Zamami Sonei runs two or three fast ferries a day (¥3140, 50 minutes) and one regular ferry (¥2120, two