The festive season is slowly creeping up on us. If you are yet to book your holiday, best you start planning immediately.
Now that you have decided to go on your holiday, you should ask yourself which destinations are best suited for you and your travel buddies.
Do you want to embrace Africa, immerse yourself in culture in Asia, stroll the streets of Europe or travel to the US for a white Christmas? Well, the options are endless.
Here are some of our picks:
Cape Town is one of those locations in South Africa that you have to see. It offers many beach spots, wine estates, historical landmarks and adventure activities.
Your itinerary: You have to go up Table Mountain, either by the cable car or a hike, take a boat ride to Robben Island or hop on the City Sightseeing bus.
The tour bus travels through various routes including Camps Bay, Kirstenbosch, Cape Point and the Cape of Good Hope.
As Cape Town is home to many wine estates you should book a tasting and tour at one of them. Favourites include Groot Constantia and Durbanville Hills.
Zanzibar has become a sought-after destination for South African travellers. Famous for its seaside resorts, seafood and watersports, Zanzibar is for people who prefer short flights (the flight from Johannesburg is only three hours) or those who want to immerse themselves in the rich history and culture.
Your itinerary: Resorts with all-inclusive rates offer a range of watersports and other activities for guests. Zanzibar is also home to a range of cultural experiences. Visit the Stone Town, where you can explore the markets.
Changuu Island, known as Prison Island, is another must-see. The small island was once used as a prison for rebel slaves in 1860s.
Mauritius is the epitome of island-style living. This bucket list destination is known for its temples, beaches, reefs and lagoons. With its interesting stories, from the extinct dodo to its cuisine, Mauritius has plenty to offer.
Your itinerary: The island’s diving opportunities include wrecks and canyons in the west and northern islands, and there are snorkelling spots throughout the island. Nature lovers will appreciate Le Morne, a Unesco World Heritage site, or the Black River Gorges ecosystem.
The food offerings in Mauritius are remarkable, especially the street food scene. Try Indian gato pima (chilli cakes) or the alouda, a milkshake using coconut milk, rose syrup and basil seeds.
Sri Lanka is an island nation south of India in the Indian Ocean, in Asia. Sri Lanka is home to 1 330km of coastline, eight Unesco World Heritage sites,15 national parks and around 500 000 acres of lush tea estates. The views are staggeringly beautiful.
Your itinerary: Sri Lanka is a multifaceted destination. One day you could climb the rock face of Bambarakanda waterfall and the next day explore the Kingdom of Kandy with its historic palaces and temples. Make sure you book a tour at a tea plantation and try out their exquisite cuisine.
Thailand is a paradise for South Africans. With the rand stronger than the Thai baht, Thailand remains a firm favourite for locals. That, coupled with its vast tourism offerings, makes it a desirable destination.
Your itinerary: Bangkok is a shopper’s paradise. There’s a range of markets and malls where you can stock up on souvenirs, gadgets and clothing. Be sure to check out the floating market.
Phuket is a party destination and famed for its watersports and historical sites. Take a stroll down Old Phuket Town or visit the Big Buddha in Karon. Phuket FantaSea is also worth a mention.
Naples in Italy is synonymous for its rich architecture, churches and history.
Your itinerary: Popular spots to visit include Naples cathedral, Castel Nuovo and Naples National Archaeological Museum. As Naples is just an-hour-and-a-half away from the Amalfi coast, you should spend a day or two on the coast. Spend decadent afternoons devouring slices of pizza and sfogliatelle.
New York or the Big Apple is ideal to visit during December or January. The city comes alive over the festive season and, if you are lucky, you may be strolling through snow-covered streets.
Your itinerary: Take a walk through Central Park, one of the most sought after locations in New York.
It is in Manhattan and known as the most visited urban park in the US.
The Empire State Building, a 102-storey Art Deco skyscraper in Midtown Manhattan, draws millions of travellers annually.
Plan to spend a day at The Statue of Liberty, which was a gift to America from France for its centennial celebration in 1886.