As the coronavirus pandemic brings the world to a standstill, people are increasingly turning to their screens for everything from family gatherings to board meetings, cooking lessons to daily workout routines, and even for touring the world.
The Rainbow Nation of South Africa has been asking travellers to stay home now, so that they can travel later. In the meanwhile, those who want a glimpse of the breathtaking nation in their living rooms, can partake in many virtual tours.
Kruger National Park
South Africa is home to numerous game reserves, each offering its own distinctive brand of game viewing. However, the world-renowned Kruger National Park offers a wildlife experience that ranks with the best in Africa. It is South Africa’s most exciting African safari destination and offers a variety of experiences such as wilderness trails, self-drive adventures and safaris.
Given the lockdown, virtual LIVE safaris have been made available to viewers from across the world. This virtual show also enables you to interact with an expert game ranger in real time! Safari vehicles, guides on foot, drones, balloons, rovers and remote cams all roam the terrains of the national park, to bring the best possible safari viewing experience to homes.
LIVE safari tours are available twice a day – sunrise safari at 9:30 am and sunset safari at 7:00pm IST, and can be viewedon WildEarth’s YouTube channel.
City of Cape Town
The Western Cape – flanked by the stunning Table Mountain on one side, and the Atlantic and Indian Oceans on the other – houses the captivating legislative capital of South Africa: Cape Town. Rightly known as the Mother City, Cape Town is as diverse as it is enchanting. It is where travellers can feel perfectly in tune with the pulse of new South Africa.
The main attraction of Cape Town is, of course, the famous Table Mountain, a natural plateau that rises over 1000 meters over the sea level and literally hangs over Cape Town, creating a lively background and this very special pleasant climate. It is a symbol and a calling card for the city – featuring on its flag. Also, one constellation in the South Hemisphere is named after it!
Catch an aerial panoramic tour of the city at www (dot) airpano (dot) com
Robben Island, near Cape Town
Nelson Mandela spent 18 immensely challenging years in prison on this little island situated less than 5 miles off the coast of Cape Town and yet emerged from it filled with forgiveness instead of hatred. Robben Island is now a World Heritage site and museum. Although from the 17th to the 20th century the island was a place of imprisonment – today it is a beacon of hope and a place where visitors can gain some insight into the life and times of Nelson Mandela and fellow freedom fighters.
Google offers a narrated tour – complete with a visit to Mandela’s 6.5 x 6.5 foot cell – led by Vusumsi Mcongo, an anti-Apartheid activist who was imprisoned on Robben Island from 1978-1990.
Catch it on Google Arts and Culture.
The Johannesburg Art Gallery (JAG), Gauteng
Since opening its doors in 1915, JAG’s Lutyens home on the edge of Joubert Park has remained at the epicentre of the Johannesburg’s art establishment. JAG boasts the largest public collection of modern and contemporary art on the sub-Saharan Africa.
It houses collections of 17th-century Dutch paintings, 18th- and 19th-century British and European art, 19th-century South African works, a large contemporary collection of 20th-century South African and international art, and a print portfolio containing works from the 15th century to the present.
Current primary curatorial focus is on contemporary African and South African art. Catch it online on Google Arts and Culture.