November 28, 2023

Clifton Beach, Cape Town, South Africa

South Africa is one of the most beautiful countries in Africa and has a special place in the hearts of many nature lovers around the globe. If looking to get away and disconnect from the rest of the world, South Africa’s dramatic landscapes, dramatic cities, and wonderful culture are guaranteed to offer unforgettable memories.

But whenever people talk about South Africa, what comes to mind is safaris. It is way more than that, and there’s something interesting in every corner. South Africa’s most beautiful cities are among its most striking features, thanks to their unique characteristics. Here are the most beautiful cities in South Africa to visit before the year ends.

10Cape Town

Cape Town City Center

Cape Town is famous for being among the most vibrant cities in South Africa and has a lot to offer visitors who want to experience its gorgeous landscape. From impressive beaches to an incredible art scene to beautiful villas, this city is one of the most beautiful places in South Africa to visit.

The second-most populous city in the country welcomes more than two million vacationers every year. The city’s most iconic attraction is the Lion’s Head (which is great for hiking), a portion of Table Mountain National Park and one of the must-visit natural attractions in South Africa’s Cape Town. Visitors can enjoy some of the most breathtaking views of Cape Town from this place. A trip to Cape Town is definitely worth it.

RELATED:10 Beach Activities To Enjoy In Cape Town


Durban’s beautiful coastline

Durban is incredibly bustling, thanks to being home to Africa’s largest port. This is among the places in the continent to experience the best of African culture, thanks to the arrival of the Kwa-Zulu residents, who made things even more interesting. Located on the shores of the world-famous Indian Ocean, Duban is the Miami of South Africa, and many pristine beaches offer an excellent tropical experience.

The city’s nightlife is one of the most vibrant in South Africa, and there are many pubs and bars to explore. Durban is one of the best cities in the entire continent of Africa, and there are many reasons to skip Cape Town and visit Durban, South Africa, instead.


Johannesburg’s city skyline

There are only three cities in Africa listed as global cities in the world, and Johannesburg is one of them. Dating back to 1886, it is also among the world’s 40 largest metropolitan areas. Johannesburg is famous for the Cradle of Humankind, one of the most iconic archeological sites in the world, known for being incredibly rich in hominids and located only about 16 miles away.

South Africa’s largest city is home to some of the best places to include in one’s bucket list, including Soweto, the birthplace of some of the most prominent African icons, including Desmond Tutu and the country’s first President, Nelson Mandela.

RELATED:What To Do In Johannesburg, South Africa, For First-Timers

7Port Elizabeth

Cape Recife in Port Elizabeth

Port Elizabeth is famous for its gorgeous beaches and a colorful underwater world with diverse wildlife. It is a popular destination for whale watchers, surfers, and beach lovers but has a lot more to offer beyond that.

Sometimes referred to as the Windy City or the Friendly City, the city dates back to 1820 when it was founded by Sir Rufane Donkin, the then-governor of the Cape Colony.

Some of the must-visit places in Port Elizabeth include the Boardwalk, Bay of Algoa, and Addo Elephant National Park.


Sunrise in Bloemfontein

Along Cape Town and Pretoria, Bloemfontein is one of the capital cities in South Africa and is sometimes referred to as “the City of Roses,” thanks for being home to beautiful colors of roses. Founded in 1846, this city is where the judiciary is based and boasts some of the most stunning sights in the city.

In addition to being one of the most beautiful towns in South Africa, the city is positioned right in the middle of the country and has an incredible shopping opportunity, an art museum, and delicious restaurants.

Bloemfontein doesn’t have many attractions, but it is a great spot to relax.


A beautiful view over Heads in Knysna

Located along the Garden Route, Knysna is one of the most beautiful cities South Africa has in store for visitors. The city is surrounded by some of the most magnificent mountains and ancient forests and is situated near a stunning lagoon, which is a popular destination among sailors and boaters.

The city is also home to plenty of delicious restaurants and hotels that keep travelers coming back time and time again.

The city suffered some wildfires in 2017, but vacationers will still find plenty of places to explore during their visit, including Tsitsikamma National Park.


Pretoria’s city skyline

Pretoria is definitely among the most beautiful cities to visit in South Africa before the year ends. Nestled about 31 miles away from Johannesburg, this city has a lot to offer, including bustling cities with some of the most impressive architecture.

One of the best seasons to visit South Africa is in Spring when its gorgeous jacaranda trees come back to life with beautiful blooms. Numerous museums give an insight into South African culture.

Pretoria is not as vibrant as Johannesburg, especially when it comes to nightlife, but it is still worth visiting.

3Saint Lucia

A river in Saint Lucia, South Africa

Saint Lucia is a must-visit city in Africa, famous for being home to numerous crocodiles and hippos. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and considered Africa’s largest estuary, making it a perfect destination for birdwatching and some of the most incredible wild animals, such as rhinos and leopards.

Isimangaliso Park is one of the best destinations to visit in Santa Lucia and is home to many gorgeous beaches. There are many tours that travelers can book to see the wild animals in the city.

RELATED:10 Instagrammable Spots In South Africa

2East London

Stirling in East London, South Africa

Located on the Easter Cape, East London is home to plenty of magnificent boardwalks, beaches, and incredible surfing opportunities. Since it is not as popular as other cities on this list, it is a perfect retreat for travelers looking for a quiet place with no crowds.

Escape the popular beaches in the country and escape to the spectacular secluded stretches in the country. If looking for beautiful cities in South Africa to visit soon, East London should definitely be on the list.

One of the must-visit places in East London is Nahoon Beach, an excellent spot for surfers.


A sanctuary in Nelspruit, South Africa

Situated on the northeast side of the country, Nelspruit is among the prettiest cities in South Africa that dates back to 1905. Travelers heading to the famous Kruger National Park fly to Nelspruit’s airport, making it one of the favorite stops to not miss, especially since it has many iconic attractions of its own.

Nelspruit is also known for being the world’s best producer of oranges and citrus fruits. Also, gamblers will love playing some games at Emnotweni Casino. Fans of safaris will definitely have some of the best in this city, and multiple agencies are offering incredible experiences.

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