People often think of an African holiday as a ‘once in a lifetime experience’ and don’t realise that it can actually be just as good value, and significantly more exotic, than heading for Europe. Particularly this year, when British holiday makers are not getting much for their money when it comes to spending in the Eurozone, this is the time to have a look at what else is on offer for your holiday rentals and hotel accommodation.

South Africa, although a long-ish flight (10 hours), is very easy to get to. There are lots of direct flights from the UK, and depending on what time of year you go, you can fly for as little as £300 per person. There is also no jetlag to contend with, so you won’t find yourself spending half your holiday getting over the time change. Accommodation choices abound here – from hotels and B&B’s to self catering holiday rentals in the form of houses on wine estates, beach huts, city apartments, game lodges and all points in between.

South Africa is a big country, so depending on how much time you’ve got, you’ll need to decide what you’re after. To experience some of everything, you’ll need to be there for quite some time, although internal travel is easy, and car hire and internal budget flights are an option. If you’ve got a couple of weeks, you could spend a week in one of the holiday rentals on offer in the western Cape, then head to the east of the country for a week of game viewing. Our winter is South Africa’s summer, although the north and eastern provinces can have good weather the whole year round.

South Africa is one of just 17 countries to the world which are considered to be ‘megadiverse’. It contains more than 10% of all the earth’s known plant species, and has endless national parks, lots of which are home to the ‘Big 5’, the five mammals which people flock to South Africa to see. There are holiday rentals all around the edges of the national parks, giving you easy access to the dawn and dusk wildlife viewing, and offering you an experience of bush living.

Colonial Cape Town is the antithesis of bush lifestyle – it’s a world famous city and teems with things to do and see, from fabulous restaurants to fascinating museums, exquisite views and easy day trips to the likes of Table Mountain, Robben island and the Cape of Good Hope. Hotels and holiday rentals in Cape Town offer you the chance to live right in the midst of this fascinating city. Not far from Cape Town are the Cape Winelands, where if you stay for a few days in somewhere like Stellenbosch, you can taste wine to your heart’s content while enjoying views across the stunning landscapes.

With something for everyone, from adrenalin activities, to beautiful beaches, city living and bush walking, it’s well worth the trip, especially if you want to try somewhere other than Europe this year.