Cape Town - Despite the cold setting in, South Africans are choosing not to stay at home, but rather to get out and about this winter.
Research by travel search platform, Cheapflights.co.za has shown that despite the chilly weather, searches for domestic travel are soaring this month, suggesting that local holiday and business destinations will be busy for the remainder of the winter season.
The top destination over winter is Johannesburg, with over 47 percent of all searches for travel to the City of Gold.
For those looking for a change of scenery, head over to the Chalkboard Café in Maboneng Precinct. Formed as part of the adjoining restaurant Bioscope, this hip little restaurant has walls and table tops that are writable chalkboards, as well as the best craft beer and pizza in town. They’re currently running a winter special whereby for beer and pizza at R125.
Flights from Durban to Johannesburg start at R876.
Cape Town is the second most popular destination, with 28 percent of searches to go there.
Inspired by trendy New York, the intimate Piano Bar in De Waterkant is a great place to cozy up with a cocktail whilst listening to live music, on tap. They’re also holding a two for one tapas special between 4 and 6pm from Monday to Sunday. For those wanting to embrace the winter chill, head over to the V & A Waterfront, where the travelling short film experience, Short and Sweet Films, will showcase a selection of the finest short films, music videos and short animations from around the globe. Follow their Facebook page to hear about the next short film.
Flights from Durban to Cape Town start at R925.
The third highest destination is Durban with 12 percent of searches for winter travel being for this city.
Just over 100km outside of city central, the midlands this time of year is one of the best places to visit. An insiders tip to the midlands is visiting the Blueberry Café on Netherwood Farm in Nottingham Road. Apart from the best cheesecake and blueberry flapjacks, this place overlooks the hills of Nottingham Road and has a cozy fire to cuddle up to.
Flights from Johannesburg to Durban start at R892.
Taking up just eight percent of searches for the top destinations over winter, Port Elizabeth has more to offer than meets the eye.
For a more unusual activity, take a stroll through the beautiful Van Staden’s Flower Reserve. This nature reserve is located just 40km outside of the main town and is home to a rare combination of native plants. Apart from flower hunting, there are various walking trails available, which are free to the public to explore. The months of July and August are perfect for hikes in the reserve as well as walks down to the dam to see the blooming of the Erica flower. Warm up with a cup of coffee at Falcon Rock Restaurant afterwards, just 7km down the road.
Flights from Cape Town to Port Elizabeth start at R1 282.
With searches up by three percent over the winter season to George, compared to previous weeks this year, the small town situated on the Garden Route will still see a small influx of visitors. For the foodies, George has a hidden gem – the Hops Valley Farm Stall, a rustic market offering a large variety of locally produced and preserved goods. Spend some time perusing the market and chatting with locals whilst also having a delectable bite to eat.
Flights from Johannesburg to George start at R1 103.
Adapted from a press release for IOL