A road trip in South Africa will open your eyes to the country's beauty. This was taken in the Western Cape. Picture: Clinton Moodley.

At a time when parents have to fork out money on presents and school items for the children, finding the extra cash for family trips in January can be tough. Here is a list of cheap family activities that your children will love.

Go on a road trip

Get your children excited by suggesting a road trip. South Africa offers some of the most beautiful towns in each province. Whether you are driving through the mountains in Drakensberg in KwaZulu-Natal, Pretoria for brunch or enjoying the full bloom that the West Coast has to offer, there is always an interesting place to see.

Plan a picnic

There is nothing better than enjoying a picnic in summer. Not only are you surrounded by nature, you also get to unwind with the people you love. Here are some picnic spots to enjoy in your province:


Delta Park

Where: Road No 3 or Road No 5 off Rustenburg Road, Victory Park, or at the corner of Pitcairn Road and Penelope Avenue in Blairgowrie.

Price: Free

Contact: 011 712-6600.


Paradise Valley Nature Reserve

Where: 10 Oxford Rd, Durban, 3610

Price: R14 for adults, R11 for children.

Contact 031 702 3443

Cape Town

Company Gardens

Where: 19 Queen Victoria Street, Cape Town Central, Cape Town

Price: Free entry.

Contact: 021 426-1357


Polokwane Bird Sanctuary

Where: Access is from the R521 from Polokwane to Dendron, Polokwane, Limpopo

Contact: 015 290 2332/2317

Go on a hike

Hikes are becoming popular among family travellers, and with good reason. I mean, who can resist a chance to explore a new place, take photographs among the most stunning backdrops and work up a sweat. South Africa offers some great hiking spot, including a trek up Lion’s Head in Cape Town or Suikerbosrand Nature Reserve in Gauteng.

Go to the beach

A beach trip is free and a beautiful way to enjoy South Africa. As the festive season draws to a close, there is no better time to visit a beach. Visit Hobie Beach in Port Elizabeth, Bloubergstrand or Clifton Beach in Cape Town, and Umhlanga or Ballito beach in Durban.