What to expect when you travel to SA in Nov

The South African summer begins in November so expect warm, breezy days along the coast, and afternoon thunderstorms in the northeast and interior. School holidays don’t begin until the first week of December, so the roads are usually quiet and the parks and holiday towns less full.

 

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November is a lovely month to visit the Western Cape. The weather is good, the summer crowds have yet to arrive, and there’s a lot to do as festivals and markets gear up for Christmas. Along the coast, whales can still be spotted and there are plenty of hotter days for tanning on the beach.

Although not usually considered the ideal time for a safari, a November trip to Kruger National Park has three things in its favour. First, it’s the shoulder season so accommodation prices at all national parks are lower. Second, Kruger’s gates change to summer time, allowing 2.5h more for game drives. Third, and undoubtedly best, the parks are full of new-borns and this is a great time to see calves and cubs frolicking in the summer rain. November in the interior can already be very hot and humid however, so prepare temperatures to reach 35°C.

Durban is also increasingly hot and wet throughout November, with sunny mornings and overcast afternoons. The coastal towns and beaches have yet to fill up and there’s usually good deals on hotels and beach cottages. If you’re on the North Coast at this time of year, pick one or two towns and stay a few days. With the variable weather, it’s best to explore from a base, and you can always head home if it suddenly pours.