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  • NOV 12, 2019
  • WRITTEN BY: Alex Mullen

Make a splash with our selection of water activities and experience days in South Africa! With summer drawing in, the days getting longer and the weather hotter, make use of the biggest activity centre there is: the open ocean! There’s nothing more satisfying on a hot day than cooling off by taking a dip in the water, so browse our favourite water experiences below to find the best way to stay cool this summer.



Take to the water for an aquatic adventure like no other. Whether you want to experience the speed of a jet ski, or ride peacefully in a canoe, the water is a unique form of transport to take in the scenery – and there’s plenty of that to be seen in South Africa!

Sundays River Canoe Tour for 2

On the peaceful rather than extreme side of water sports, this Sundays River Canoe Tour for 2 is a lovely way to splash away the afternoon, engage with nature and bask in the beauty of the river. If you’re looking to pursue a new hobby or purchase a gift for the water baby in your life, this canoeing tour is the perfect way to dip your toes in (sorry.)

This voucher entitles two people to a canoe adventure along the Sundays River with an experienced guide at their side. There’s no better place to enjoy the water than the Sundays River, originally named Nukakamma (‘Grassy Water’) by the Khoisan people for its luscious evergreen riverbanks. As you begin your journey, take in the surrounding natural beauty and enjoy the feeling of gliding along in your canoe. Keep your eyes peeled for the local wildlife who call the area home, as you may even catch a glimpse of Cape Otters, Vervet Monkeys, Bushbuck, Kudu or Porcupines. Your knowledgeable guide will be on hand to answer any questions you have about the area, and remember to pack some food, as there’s nothing better than a riverside picnic!


Jet Ski Experience in Plettenberg Bay

Okay, now it’s time to ramp things up a bit. If the thrills you favour are more extreme than a peaceful canoe ride, this jet ski experience in Plettenberg is perfect for you. This high-speed, wet and wild adventure will introduce you to the unique invention of the jet ski, show you how to properly control it, and give you a lot of laughs in the process.

Meeting your guide at Central Beach, Plettenburg Bay, you’ll report to the Adventure Hut. After signing in your guides will give you a short briefing and provide you with your wet suits and life jackets. Then it’s time for the fun part! Experience the thrill of riding a jet ski out into the bay, and test what these awesome machines are really made of.



Go on – take the plunge! Diving and snorkeling experiences are a great way to experience the water from a whole new perspective and discover a whole new world underneath. Diving itself dates back to 4500 BCE, back when people used it as a way to source food and valuables – now of course, there’s no commercial reason for us to be getting our snorkel suits on and plunging into the deep unknown, but like a lot of things, we do it simply because it’s fun! Discover the thrill of underwater diving with our range of experiences – whether you want company in the form of amazing marine life, or just the chance to learn how to breathe underwater…


Snorkelling Experience on Storms River - Tsitsikamma

Discover the joy of snorkelling with this experience on Storms River, Tsitsikamma.
Whether you have some experience snorkelling or have never tried it before, this day out will show you how much fun it can be to discover the wonders lying just beneath the surface…

Your 1-hour experience begins with a briefing from your qualified guide. You’ll be provided with everything you need to start snorkelling – including a wet suit, fins, mask and a snorkel – so should look suitably ridiculous! Your guide will help familiarise you with the equipment and advise on fin technique and snorkel skills, before leading you into the water. You’ll swim out into the mouth of the Storms River, and soon be astonished by the sheer abundance of life to be found beneath the gentle waves. You’ll chase fish as they dart over shimmering coral and even spot rays lurking on the ocean bed. Buoyant with the energy of this hidden world, you'll be reluctant to return to shore when the experience concludes.


Snorkelling With Seals - False Bay

…from learning to snorkel solo, to sharing the sea with the adorable seals who call it home. This experience is ideal for those fascinated by marine life. You’ll start at a meeting point close to Simon’s Town, where the group will get kitted out in diving gear. Next, you’ll all hop into the Zodiac RIB, setting off on your aquatic adventure. No previous experience is necessary for this snorkelling expedition, and you’ll be given a safety briefing from the instructor before hitting the water! The seals in False Bay have grown accustomed to human presence, so you can expect to see several curious faces swimming around you, as well as the abundant marine life that resides in the bay.



Rafting is a thrilling and unforgettable adventure. The crashing waves, the sensation of gliding over the water, the invigorating feeling of navigating the course with your raft… it just doesn’t get much better than this! Because of their need for teamwork and thinking together, rafting and tubing experiences are great to take as a group – you might find that you and your teammates have more in common than you think!

Half Day Tubing and SUP Experience - Storms River

This half day experience on the Storms River takes tubing to the next level, by combining it with another thrilling water activity: stand up paddle-boarding! Invented by Hawaiian surfers as an antidote to wave-free sea conditions, SUP is the water craze sweeping the world. It’s not difficult to see why this sport has taken off, as it’s widely cited as being one of the most accessible water sports out there, with people of all shapes and sizes taking part!

Combined with tubing, SUP is a great way to explore the water. The group will convene in Storms River Village before taking a scenic forest drive to the start point. Here, you’ll be kitted-out with wet suits, helmets and—of course—your hard-wearing inflatable tubes. Suitably attired, you’ll clamber aboard your vessels and begin the journey with an upstream paddle followed by a short walk to the first calm pool. Next, you’ll swap your tubes for stand-up paddle-boards and continue your journey towards an optional rock jump—not for the faint of heart! At this point, you can also try SUP handstands, tube balancing and swimming, naturally. Lying within the Plaatbos Nature Reserve, the surrounding forest is vibrant with wildlife, including fish eagles, Knysna loeries, pied and giant Kingfishers! When the trip draws to a close, you’ll return to dry land weary—yet satisfied—having glimpsed nature at its most breathtaking.


Half Day Umkomazi River Rafting in Kwazulu Natal

This adrenaline-pumping activity day in KwaZulu-Natal 
combines river rafting, zip-lining and rock jumping for a thrilling experience to remember. Your experience starts at an adventure centre around 22km west of Richmond, where guests will receive a safety briefing, get kitted out in life jackets and helmets, and watch a paddling demonstration. The friendly instructors will then drive the group 6km up the river for some final paddling exercises - then you're off! With no fewer than ten class 2-3 rapids on the way, you're guaranteed a wet and wild adventure as you traverse the flowing water, and take in the stunning scenery around you. After a quick snack break you'll continue on for another 3km of rafting, taking on the notorious Mkomazi River Number 1 Rapid... and before you know it, you're back at the adventure centre where you can enjoy rock jumping and zip-lining, with refreshments and showers available.


Half Day Vaal River Rafting Experience

Take on the mighty Vaal River during this exciting rafting experience, spending five hours traversing the water under the instruction of APA river guides.

Starting in the town of Parys on the bank of the Vaal, your guides will talk you through the plan for the day and get you kitted out in flotation gear, before heading to the water to begin the trip. No rafting experience is necessary so don't worry if you've never paddled before, but there are some rapids that will give you quite a rush! Throughout the day you'll leisurely raft on your inflatable crocs, taking in the Free State landscape on one side and the North West province on the other. The trip finishes at the small but often powerful Gatsien rapid - so don't expect to emerge dry!



We love shark cage diving. In fact, we love it so much, we’ve written an entire article about it. If you want to know more about shark cage diving, how it began, and how it is kept safe, browse our in-depth blog post for answers. Although shark cage diving looks objectively terrifying (these are, after all, creatures who an entire thriller movie is based on and who basically have their own theme song at this point) it’s actually very safe. Why is this? Well, mostly because… he’s just not that into you. The fact is, sharks don’t actually want to eat humans – despite what the mighty Spielberg would have you believe. Not to toot our own proverbial horns or anything, but our own article puts it pretty well:

“Sharks don’t want to eat metal cages. You have to also bear in mind, sharks don’t want to eat you. If sharks wanted to eat humans, they’d… eat humans. But they don’t. First of all, we simply aren’t good enough for them. Don’t get offended, it’s not personal, but when sharks eat, they want a high-fat, blubber rich, calorie dense morsel like a fat little seal. When sharks do bite humans, that’s all they tend to do. They bite – and go. Sadly, the curiosity of a two tonne saw-toothed fish can tend to result in serious injury and fatality, but… they don’t mean it. If that helps.”

Shark Cage Diving Experience in Durban

This shark cage diving experience in Durban is perfect for people who wish to push their own boundaries, or even marine-enthusiasts looking to examine fascinating marine life up close. This experience will allow you to spend 30 minutes with dusky, black tip and spinner sharks from inside a cage. No previous diving experience is necessary, just a good helping of courage and enthusiasm! This experience is perfect for those interested in marine life, as your experienced instructors will take the time to speak to you about conservation, the sharks you’ll be hanging out with, and the equipment you’ll be using for the dive. As you head out to sea, your instructors will point out the sharks swimming around the boat, which can be anything from five to twenty. Next, it’s time to dive in! You’ll be supplied with top of the range, brand new dive gear, and helped into the cage ready for your underwater adventure. As you descend into the shark-filled depths, you won’t believe how magical it feels to observe these creatures going about their underwater business. You’ll get to watch them for a spellbinding 30 minutes before heading back to dry land.


Kleinbaai Shark Diving Experience With Cape Town Transport


 Get up close and personal with great white sharks—the ocean’s most ferocious predators! Your experience begins in Cape Town, where you’ll board the luxurious air-conditioned vehicle for the two-hour drive to Gansbaai. You’ll then enjoy a light breakfast, before taking a boat trip into nearby shark-infested waters! Here, you’ll be provided with a wetsuit and breathing equipment, before entering the submerged cage. Your guides will then work hard to ensure an awesome wildlife encounter. Luckily, Gansbaai is considered the great white shark capital of the world—attracting film crews, researchers and thrill-seekers from all over—so you’ve an excellent chance of seeing them. Great whites have around 300 razor-sharp teeth and can grow up to 20 ft in length—yikes! Sharing the water with one is an experience you’ll never forget.

Great White Shark Cage Diving Experience - Gansbaai


Explore the natural habitat of great white sharks during this unforgettable cage dive experience, located in the Overberg District Municipality. 
Meeting in Gansbaai over a light breakfast, the experience begins with a thorough safety briefing on what to expect in the cage, and a demonstration on how to properly use the equipment. Once you're suited and booted in underwater gear, the boat will set off towards the dive site and drop some food into the water to get the sharks interested. Dives are orchestrated on a rotation system which sends 5-6 people down at a time for around 15 minutes, before swapping with the next group, and so on. It's true what they say about the majesty of these gentle giants; witnessing a 1,000kg shark swim up to the cage and look you in the eye is an experience you'll never forget! Back on dry land you'll be treated to a hot meal, providing a perfect opportunity to discuss the incredible feat you've just achieved.


Watersports, extreme adventures, and getting up close and personal with sharks are all thrilling activities for those who like to live life on the wild side. But what about those of us who enjoy the calmer, more tranquil side of water while our feet are placed firmly on the ground? Enjoy the sight of water from a distance with a drink in your hand, or fill up on the best brunch around from inside a glass-enclosed vessel.

St Croix, Brenton And Jahleel Islands Boat Tour

Cruise through the islands on this idyllic boat tour! The four-hour morning trip sets off from Port Elizabeth Harbour, circling around the breakwater towards the Port of Ngqura, reaching Jahleel Island and jetting out to sea until you reach Brenton Island. Keen birdwatchers will be thrilled to spot Cape Gannets flying between the islands, and if you're lucky you may even sight Bottlenose Dolphins and Southern Right Whales! The stars of the show have to be the African Penguins on St Croix Island, the largest colony in the world. These birds are currently listed as endangered due to exploitation and pollution, but many organisations in PE are working hard to conserve the population - so hopefully you'll get to see a thriving community of adorable penguins!


Unlimited Bubbly Brunch Cruise in Cape Town

On this bottomless brunch boat cruise, your special giftee will climb aboard a glass-enclosed vessel for a truly unforgettable dining experience. During their experience, they’ll enjoy unlimited bubbles, a delicious hot and cold breakfast spread, and sprawling views of Table Mountain! Departing from the pierhead promptly at 9am, the cruise will begin in the best way possible: with a glass of sparkling wine. The friendly waiting staff will then show guests to their tables. This brunch is served afternoon-tea style on a 3-tiered breakfast platter. Guests can expect cold cuts of meat, bread, fresh fruit and cheese, plus their own choice of hot breakfast including flapjacks, scrambled eggs, croissants and more. Of course, a bottomless brunch wouldn’t be bottomless without fizz, so breakfast will be served with ice cold sparkling wine which will keep flowing until the end of the two-hour cruise. Amazing views will pass by outside while brunch is served, making this experience scenic as well as delicious!


Thanks for reading!

... And that concludes our favourite water activities and days out in South Africa! If you're keen for more information, check out our guide to Recreational Water Sports in South Africa. We hope you've found something here for the water baby in your life, or maybe just a way to pass the long summer days! If you have any questions or comments about our water experiences, feel free to leave us a comment - we'd love to hear from you!



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