South Africa

South Africa’s fabulous baker boys

Desserts are the edible status symbols of the century. And who are the people behind these picture-perfect creations, the makers of SA’s most delicate pastries, tarts and cream petits fours? As Jane Broughton discovers, a bunch of blokes. Beards, tattoos and all

Secret Johannesburg

Any city holds secrets. Grand interiors hide behind unassuming exteriors; crumbling façades disguise neglected glory. Jo’burg, a city built on empty veld thanks to the lottery win of a gold rush, is full of unseen marvels – as revealed in the new book Hidden Johannesburg. As author Paul Duncan says, buildings are more than just the sum of the materials used to construct them. Go on then. Look up. Explore

Wrapped up: the history of Lesotho’s Basotho blankets

Wearable blankets have hit the world’s catwalks lately, but in the mountain kingdom of Lesotho – now celebrating 50 years of independence – blankets have been stylish for over 150 years. More than that, they’re part of everyday life, as shown in Thom Pierce’s series ‘The Horsemen of Semonkong’. As these images go on exhibition this month, Ufrieda Ho unwraps the history of Basotho blankets

City hot spot: Woodstock-Salt River, Cape Town

Designers, baristas and stylists are all falling for the chic charms of these inner-city South African suburbs, says local writer Brandon de Kock

Pantsula: South Africa’s new dance craze

It means ‘waddle like a duck’ in Zulu – but pantsula is a marvel of fancy footwork. 
Born on township streets, the dance has been a staple of South African youth culture 
for decades. Now, though, it’s making waves for a new generation. Daniela Goeller reports. Photography by Chris Saunders

An (almost) A-Z guide to African food in South Africa

In recent years, there has been a steady influx of epicurean entrepreneurs and talented chefs from north of South Africa’s borders, bringing with them different spices, produce, culinary styles and tastes. Here is an ‘A–Z’ of exotic, authentic dishes from all around the continent

50 curious places to visit in southern Africa

To mark High Life South Africa’s 50th issue, the team asked experts from a variety of fields to give their tips on making the most of southern Africa

South Africa: Fancourt, George, Western Cape

It may boast Africa’s leading golf course, but with four pools, as many restaurants, an acclaimed spa and exemplary accommodation, this relaxed resort isn’t all about teeing off. Ianthe Butt checks in

South Africa: Twelve Apostles Hotel and Spa, Cape Town

Majestic mountains at the rear and the glittering ocean on its doorstep make this boutique hotel the perfect place to get back to nature. Ianthe Butt is enchanted

Kruger tales: Celebrating 90 years of South Africa’s Kruger National Park

This month, one of Africa’s largest game reserves, the Kruger National Park, officially turns 90. That’s 90 years of thrilling wildlife sightings and encounters – some that push the boundaries of credulity. Here are five incredible tales from ordinary visitors, as collated by Jeff Gordon in his book, 101 Kruger Tales

Five of the best safari lodges

From Namibia to South Africa we've found five fantastic safari lodges to help you live life on the wild side

Richard E. Grant: returning to Africa

Memories of a Swaziland childhood – where vervet monkeys and cobras were the norm – have repeatedly drawn actor Richard E. Grant back to Africa. Here, he travels to Tanzania, and a former hunting hotspot that evolved to become one of the continent’s greatest conservation sites

Cape Town: Cape Grace

Fans of tradition will love this antique-laden retreat with a South African sea breeze says Ianthe Butt

Six of the world’s best remote villas

Issy D’Arcy Clark scouts out six secluded villas that let you escape the crowds

Six of the world’s best city villas

From a bastion of modern design to a 12th century palazzo, Issy D'Arcy Clark uncovers six villas in cities across the globe

Where next in 2016?

To discover the destinations that should be on your radar next year, who better to ask than leading travel editors, adventurers and globe-trotters from around the world? Issy D’Arcy Clark tracks them down

Cape Town’s corner shops

The once-ubiquitous corner café is becoming less easy to find. Which means that stepping over the threshold into one of Cape Town’s long-term survivors is even more of a treat. Could I have one Disprin, a Double O, a ripe avo, seven Fizzers and a Barbie, please?

Harare, Zimbabwe: an insider’s guide

From locally roasted coffee fit for royals to exportable fashion and design, Harare has an enterprising, creative spirit that may surprise you, says Jane Broughton

Alexander von Humboldt: the lost hero of science

Penguins, mountains and part of the Moon are named after him, yet today few know the story of Alexander von Humboldt

13 ways to not watch the Rugby Cup Final in South Africa

For some, watching rugby on 31 October will be too awful. What’s more, it’s Halloween (scary! Did they plan it this way?). Here are other thrills to be had

Video: British Airways flies lion cubs and baby rhinos from South Africa to the USA

BA and IAG Cargo took two baby rhinos and two lion cubs on an epic journey from Johannesburg to their new home in Miami as a part of a global conversation effort

The big cat selfies

Believe it or not, this big cat took its own selfie — with a little help from a remote-controlled buggy camera

The tales of Table Mountain

Ancient icon, new world wonder: Table Mountain’s legendary beauty caresses the city that surrounds her. In celebration of ‘the mountain’, Janine Stephen asks seven Capetonians what the landmark means to them. Photography by Michael Ellis

Time travel: flights of fancy

We rummage through the British Airways archive to find out what was taking off in the world of aviation way back when. This month, a look back at the flying boats of the 1930s

The Queen: a life in travel

She’s travelled to 116 countries through the jet age, the space age and now into the digital age, but still doesn’t own (or need) a passport. Ahead of 9 September, when Queen Elizabeth II will become Great Britain’s longest-serving monarch, Nick Curtis looks back at a very regal life of travel

South Africa safari: meet the girl guides

It’s a thrilling, dangerous and envy-inducing job, being a game ranger in Africa. But what if you don’t fit the macho mould? A few of our top safari guides talk to Jane Broughton about life on the wild side

It’s boom time: the rise of South African opera

South African opera is in the midst of a revolution, with local composers daring to make this ‘eurocentric’ art form their own. Keith Bain reports

What’s up, Jo’burg?

Long obsessed with what lies beneath the ground, the ‘place of gold’ has turned its gaze skywards. The rooftop revolution is well underway. Jozi addict Ufrieda Ho gives the view from the top two thumbs up

South Africa’s gaming boom

What avid gamer hasn’t dreamt up a game of their own? But how many actually end up creating them? Quite a few, it turns out, if SA’s growing community of game developers is anything to judge by

Seven of the best home away from home hotels

Honesty kitchens, cosy communal living rooms and pillows that are just right… Hannah Hudson tracks down the best places for a ‘home suite home’ break

South Africa: the South Coast for grown ups

It’s long been a family-holiday mecca, where kids run wild and free and adults look on in envy. But now this stretch of KwaZulu-Natal coastline is growing 
up and stepping out

Justin Rose’s hole in one hit list

The first English player to win the US Open in four decades, even 
for Justin Rose it’s not all about bunkers, birdies and bogeys; his favourite courses feature mountains, distant islands and greens reached only by helicopter. He exclusively reveals to Tim Hulse his top places to tee off

Johannesburg’s best food markets

Markets have always been central to Johannesburg. Founded in 1886 on one of the richest gold reefs in history, the city quickly attracted mineworkers and labourers from around the world who needed to be fed. Today, food markets are equally important, but their artisanal wares are a far cry from the bush meat and maize beer of the 19th century. Nick Savage picks five of the best

Forest bathing on the Garden Route

Dianne Tipping-Woods re-visits Knysna and discovers the art of shinrin-yoku (forest bathing)

10 of South Africa’s best wine tasting spots

There’s no need to go down to the cellar to taste the pick of the crop these days. Wine-tasting experiences are getting more sophisticated and spaces more conducive to lingering for hours. Here’s where to go

What is the smell of Victoria Falls?

This was the question facing perfumer Tammy Frazer, hired to create an evocative fragrance that would capture a world wonder in a bottle. These are her notes from her scent-finding expedition

Street photography in Durban

In a world of cellphone cameras and selfies, Durban’s tech-savvy portrait photographers make a living capturing those special moments for customers on the beachfront and city streets

South Africa’s best brunch spots

Haven’t you heard? Post-mortems for the meal midway between breakfast and lunch are echoing around the globe, including a story in the Guardian calling it ‘a potent symbol of urban decay’. Fortunately no one told South Africans, who are still brunching up a storm. Book now before local foodie fashionistas catch up and kill it

Four of Cape Town’s trendiest streets (that aren't Long Street)

Step away from the gauche tourist-bait of Long Street, Kloof Street and the Camps Bay strip, says Zane Henry, and instead experience four Cape Town streets currently enjoying a trendy regeneration

Fancy a Durban curry?

Yes, it’s hot and spicy, but it’s not exactly like its Indian counterpart. Erica Platter, co-author of ‘Durban Curry: So Much of Flavour’, dissects the dish and discovers its colourful history

A playlist for Johannesburg

Ian Birrell shares the six songs that make up his playlist for sounds of South Africa

South African house music: Meet Spoek Mathambo

As 'kwaito', the house music genre created in South Africa, becomes more globally popular, Ian Birrell meets its biggest star, Spoek Mathambo, and discovers a music scene that's pushing boundaries

Five places to see African rhinos in the wild

Central and East Africa expert Carel Verhoef picks the best locations to see a rhino up close — and tells us how we can help the species survive

10 of the world's most scenic marathons

Not all marathons are run on concrete and follow a city circuit. Some take you across arctic glaciers, over desert plains and through some of the most spectacular scenery the world has to offer, says Harriet Letherbarrow

My Africa: Brett Bailey, theatre director

South African playwright and theatre director Brett Bailey talks about his travels on the continent

Justin Rose on the world's best golfing destinations

To celebrate The Masters tournament this week, champion golfer Justin Rose, who is currently ranked sixth in the world, recommends his favourite courses from Scotland to South Africa

Six surprising surf spots in Africa

Craig Jarvis rounds up six African hot spots for huge waves and a cool surfer crowd

South Africa's best promenades

Forget parks or town squares. In South Africa's coastal cities, it's the seaside promenade that forms a truly public space, shared by all. Join us on a stroll down three favourites

Johannesburg's best bookshops

Johannesburg has more than 900 rare and second-hand bookstores. Zane Henry picks three of the best

Global tribes: South Africa's Born-Frees

The sharply-dressed South African street crews feature in the work of photographer Daniele Tamagni

Five of the best day trips from Johannesburg

Staying in South Africa's largest city? Venture further afield for a taste of Johannesburg's surrounding wilderness and urban neighbours, says Katie Gatens

Seven reasons to visit South Africa

The longest sandboarding dune in the southern hemisphere, a diverse music scene and, 
of course, Mandela’s former home; Zane Henry, who was born under apartheid in Cape Town, rediscovers this inspiring country

City hot spots: Maboneng Precinct, Johannesburg

Sleep in an art installation or shop for local fashion in Johannesburg's creative urban village

Writer tips: where to see the night sky

As Northumberland National Park and its surroundings are granted dark sky status, High Life's contributors shed some light on some of the darkest places to go stargazing

Your winter getaway planner

Need to escape the dark months ahead but without the stress of organising it all? Whether you want sand or snow beneath your feet, Francesca Syz has all you need for your great getaway

City hot spots: Kalk Bay, Cape Town

Rob Crossan selects the best of Kalk Bay's food, drink, shopping and art for this month's Cape Town hot spot

Authentic travel

Hip Hotels founder Herbert Ypma grew up travelling to authentic destinations. Here he explains why getting under the skin of a new place is so important — and, often, affordable

Natural art: African birds' nests

These striking silhouettes in the Kalahari Desert are actually nests built by the social weaver bird

Futuristic vs retro hotels

Some hotels tap into the nostalgia of decades past, while others are racing towards the future of hospitality

On the road with... Josh Groban

The classical singer on fruity rider requests and singing in the rain on tour

South Africa's Little Ten: the best small wildlife to spot in South Africa

Aside from the Big Five, there's another story at the end of the zoom lens. As naturalist Chris Packham and writer Emily Payne discover, sometimes it's not the size that matters — meet South Africa's Little 10

Five of the best international restaurants in South Africa

Sample the world on a plate in the Rainbow Nation itself, South Africa

Four of South Africa's best new bars

The best watering holes for wine, cocktails or craft beers in Cape Town and Johannesburg

Five of the best hotels in South Africa

Sleep off South Africa's great food and wine at one of these welcoming hotels

South Africa's best restaurants

South Africa is one of the best new food destinations, according to critic Bruce Palling. He should know. He spent 15 days eating 200 dishes, drinking 60 wines in 30 restaurants across Johannesburg, Cape Town and beyond...

Five unusual ingredients used in South Africa

On his food tour of South Africa, Bruce Palling came across five ingredients to challenge the palate

Five of the best South African chefs

Five master chefs in the making from Johannesburg and Cape Town

Five of South Africa's best sommeliers

The best noses sniffing out South Africa's finest wine lists in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Stellenbosch

Five of the best affordable restaurants in South Africa

Where to eat like a king for £20 a head in South Africa

Five of the best South African restaurants

The best restaurants for contemporary, experimental, sophisticated or authentic cuisine in South Africa

The topsy-turvy travel planner: art in Johannesburg

Travel from a different angle. This month, journey to Johannesburg in South Africa for a spot of gallery-hopping

Notes from a traveller: Charlize Theron

The actor and producer talks of LA life and her South African roots

Flying Start

Girls Aloud’s Sarah Harding meets the South Africans who have been given a Flying Start

Where to eat, drink and stay in South Africa

Angela Hartnett recommends the best places to eat, drink and stay in South Africa.

Meeting Mandela – John Simpson's first time meeting Nelson Mandela

He’s the father of modern South Africa, practically a living saint with a long line of presidents, royalty and supermodels waiting to meet him. John Simpson has been granted an audience more than most and here reveals the man behind the myth

The World Cup guide to Durban

As South Africa gears up to host the World Cup and welcome thousands of visitors, Rosie Millard offers an insider’s guide to the best sights and bites in Durban

The World Cup guide to Jo'burg

As South Africa gears up to host the World Cup and welcome thousands of visitors, Rosie Millard offers an insider’s guide to the best sights and bites in Jo'burg

South Africa: Angela Hartnett's gastronomic tour

Looking for an authentic taste of South Africa? Who better to guide you than Michelin-starred chef Angela Hartnett? On a tour of Cape Town - the latest foodie destination - she eats, drinks and gets merry with the country's top bon vivants. Fiona Sims joins her

The World Cup guide to Cape Town

As South Africa gears up to host the World Cup and welcome thousands of visitors, Rosie Millard offers an insider’s guide to the best sights and bites in Cape Town

Return to Karoo: South Africa's Eastern Cape

South Africa’s Karoo is 30,000 sq miles of unforgiving, achingly lonely landscape. It’s also home to a new generation of game reserves that are malaria-free, luxurious and affordable. Justin Cartwright returns to the place of his childhood and checks into the serene Mount Camdeboo

South Africa: the million-dollar hole in one

In his best-selling book, Dream On, amateur golfer John Richardson described his quest to hit a par round within a year. Now, on a trip to South Africa, he faces a new challenge and the chance to win a fortune

The best spas in Africa

For beauty that's more than skin deep, recuperate with some African-style pampering

Nelson Mandela's South Africa

Home to sweeping coasts and epic hills, South Africa’s little-known Eastern Cape is where Nelson Mandela grew up. David James Smith visits the land and people that forged the great man.