Choosing an ideal time to visit South Africa is not an easy task. After all, this is a country famous for its sunshine and relatively warm winters.
Perhaps it's wise to consider what it is you wish to do and see, along with the South African tourism seasons. For example, South Africa is paradise for an avid twitcher (a birdwatcher who will spend money and travel long distances at short notice to see a rare bird) since the country is on the flight path of birds from the north from mid-October through November. If it's the floral carpet spread of the Cape flower season that you wish to witness, visit the area in August or September when the first signs of spring appear. If you’re interested in a game safari, book your trip anytime between May and September when the temperature is mild, rainfall is minimal and the bush is at its thinnest so game viewing is easier.
During the major South African holiday seasons, the schools close and families head for the coast en-masse. The busiest period of all falls between mid- December and early January, coinciding with the Festive Season. In mid-winter, locals head for warmer climes. You'll find holiday crowds in Durban and Cape Town, but they do bring a lot of buzz in their wake.
If adventure is your passion, activities like diving, hiking and surfing are most enjoyable at summer's peak (November to mid-March). If you want to catch a major sporting or entertainment event, they generally take place out of season. If you’re yearning for some sand and surf, the South African winter compares favorably with the European summer, and the tropical province of KwaZulu-Natal with its fine coastline is a popular beach holiday destination.
The best time to visit South Africa? Just about all year round.