South Africa Tourist Traps

  • Tourist Traps
    by Moirads
  • Looking from sundeck of one of the hotels.
    Looking from sundeck of one of the...
    by canuck68
  • Tourist Traps
    by DAO

South Africa Tourist Traps

  • V&A Waterfront

    Cape Town Tourist Traps

    I am a local and can assure you one can spend a day at this " trap" and it could cost as little as US$10Fairly reasonable entertainment but of course. A very good thing to do is spend a few hours at the aquqrium which is also right and really superior. The V&A is a copy of the South Street Sea port in NY but as it is newer it is vastly superior....

  • Street beggars, including blind beggars

    Beggars, blind, cripple and sound in body, have been around since time began. The bible speaks of them. Popular literature speaks of them. Many countries have them. There is a British pub called "The Blind Beggar". South Africa has them (beggars, not pubs) in abundance. They will be at almost every traffic light. It is your choice whether to give...


    “PLASTIC?” This is the question you will be asked by your cashier as she bags your food at the grocery store. When I was younger they used to ask ‘Paper or Plastic’. What you do not realise as you say ‘Yes’ is that they are asking you to BUY the plastic bags. Yep, you pay for each and every one you use. It took me a while to realise this. I was...

  • Souvenirs

    In South Africa you'll see a lot of local markets selling 'African art'. Before you buy it, make sure you know where it's from, as a lot of it isn't actually from South Africa. Especially the wood carvings of the Big 5 and some of the art is often from Mozambique as labor is cheaper there. Most legitimate souvenir shops only sell stuff made in...

  • Sun City

    I agree with Anton. You can find a Sun City in many countries, I think. I loved Pilanesberg and saw lots of animals. If you go to Sun City then be prepared to spend quite a bit of money if you want to gamble, or stay in the accommodation there. Instead I would spend a couple of days at Pilanesberg and see some of the sights around Johannesburg.

  • Value Added Tax: Keep Receipts and...

    South Africa's Value added tax ("Sales Tax" to people in the USA) is fairly significant. If you are not South African, however, you can get a refund as you leave the country - at least if you are doing so at a major airport. (I didn't see refund stands at the road border crossings, but they may exist.)However, getting the refund is not so very...

  • Confidence will take u a long way

    When a local approaches you speaking their native language, pretend to understand what they are saying..otherwise they'll know ur foreign and the dangerous games will begin! Always smile..u seem harmless and friendly. Be confifent and walk like u know the whole town! Learn a few words in Afrikaans or Xhosa Quit!

  • never lose your visacard out of sight!

    Back home from South Africa I was surprised to find hundreds of euros on the outprint of my visa expenses, that I had actually not spent. I was suprised because I never lost my card out of sight, I always had it on me, even at night... The only moment I did not see what happened to it was in a busstation where they took it behind the counter for...

  • Petting a Cheetah

    Ok, yes petting a cheetah in South Africa is probably one of the most tourist trap things to do.., but I found it nonetheless enjoyable. When will be the next time you will ever do something like this anyway?We pet chettahs at the Cango Wildlife Ranch in Oudtshoorn South Africa Stay calm.., pet it slowly.., don't make any sudden moves!! You can...

  • "Donations"

    In Camps Bay it is likely you will be approached by people collecting money for some "childs funds". Probably a scam, but you even get a receipt for your donation. Maybe you can even use it for your next tax declaration.

  • Market scams

    In the markets you will repeatedly hear "I'll give you a special price...". Well, then they make up any price they feel like giving you. If you think it is too expensive, be prepared to walk away. Say "no thanks" and suddenly the price starts to drop as you leave their stand. You can usually get it down to a reasonalble price. Also, go in with...

  • Trying to be Disneyland!

    Gold Reef City (about 10km from Jo'burg city centre) costs about US$10 to get in, which is best spent sitting in a bar somewhere else, as that's probably all you would have done in there anyway. Go on some of the rides. Go shopping!

  • African Souvenirs

    I found that there were Africans selling their wares on the roadside, in markets and in stores. I thought that the cheapest souvenirs were bought from the roadside stalls. Of course a bit of haggling goes on. I was never good at that. If you get into an African Market and it seems as though everyone wants a piece of you, I found (was advised...

  • Various Tourist Traps

    Well you know there is various things to be careful of. Well like I said South Africa is not all that bad well yet there is things to beware of.Have a Look so that you are not caught by suprise.

  • Begging

    Of course, this is Africa and you will be subjected to begging and other forms of cons. Just keep your wits about you, if you wish to give money, then do so, but if not, don't feel guilty about it, this is a job to some.If you don't want to give them money, the best thing to do is STATE, "I have no money" and continue walking, if you stop to chat,...

  • Beware Stopping At Stop Streets

    there have been a number or snatch and grab situations recently as woman drivers approach a stop sign or a traffic light the gang of theives 1 draws your attention to the drivers side then another smashes your passenger side window and grabs yuor hand bag or cell phone plse be on the look out avoid traveling by one selves to remote areas alone...

  • Bushveld train safaris

    Mr Boonzaaier, owner of the Bushveld train safaris, that runs from South Africa to Namibia. This person is extremely untrustworthy as he had dumped my Grandparents in a foriegn country 230km in the Namibian desert, with no means of transport or any help what so ever, only with the intervention of the pleasant Spoornet rep. they were allowed onto a...

  • Dumazulu Cultural Village

    OK, now I knid of had a feeling that this would be a tourist trap before we even got there but it still was interesting to see and I did learn some things too. The clincher that threw it into Tourist Trap status was the gift shop at the end...very tacky. I would suggest to go to the Nyani Cultural Village instead, it was less crowded and more...

  • Hartbeespoort children´s fund

    OK. So this guy fooled me. And lots of others that were behind me were fooled too. If you ever go to Harbeespoort (norhtwest Pretoria), and go to the craftmarket, you´ll probably meet a guy that's raising money for the Harbeesport school, so the children will have somewhere to learn to become better persons and blah, blah, blah. He'll be so anoying...


    Victoria & Albert Waterfront is extremely expensive and very commercial! And the local vendors try to rip you off by not displaying the prices! I think that they judge you by the way you look and your accent and raise the prices if you are not from South Africa. The restaurants are also very expensive. And it's definately not a good spot to buy the...

  • Cango Wildlife Ranch is more like a...

    One night while having drinks around the fire, a couple of girls were telling me about having went to this place (Cango Wildlife Ranch) where they saw lions and pet cheetah's. I was getting very excited as I hadn't seen a lion, even in Zimbabwe on safari, and it sounded like it was close by. Then the girl telling me about the cheetah thing said...

  • Car Park guards

    Guys 'watching' your car, and asking for a tip afterwards... normally happy with 1 or 2 rands.The crime rate has given SA a lot, but this is probably the worst. For every 1 honest, hardworking soul, 10 lazy ones hang around parking lots directing traffic, leaning against your car, and sometimes harassing you if you ask them to point at which car is...

  • Nice but Overpriced!

    We were warned about crime in South Africa (although we had no problems) but the biggest crime we encountered were the prices in the stores on the Victoria and Albert Waterfront. Don't get me wrong, this was a very nice, upscale shopping/dining area but it's not much different from an upscale American mall shopping/dining area. Go for the views of...



  • Roadside souvenirs

    More on my favourite topic of South African souvenirs. After you've stopped at the millionth roadside stall, take a closer look at the wooden carvings from exotic woods. Most of these are made from cheap wood, and then polished with nugget (shoe polish) so that it looks like more expensive wood was used. Wiping them with a wet cloth should tell you...

  • Pilgrim's Rest

    Pilgrim's Rest is not really a tourist trap, but it could be if you are not careful! It is actually a collection of preserved buildings from the late 1800's depicting what a gold mining town looked like at that time. The town is located in a very picturesque setting in the eastern Drakensbergs and there are a number of interesting buildings and...

  • St. Lucia resort- meet the real...

    St. Lucia is said to be a nature reserve which is of global meaning. But don't go to St.Lucia resort. There is nothing to do but a boat tour (which is much too expensive). And there are only unfriendly people. A typical place where the racist whites have spent their holidays and you still can feel it. Don't spend a night there, if possible. And if...

  • Zulu villages

    If you want to visit a Zulu village,don't go to Shakazulu,nordeast of Durban.This village is build up for the movie,and now it is a big trap.Every day a lot of bustourists are drop down there.A more original village is Dumazulu,north of Mtubatuba,nearby St Lucia.We were with only 4 visitors and they learned us some Zulu words,guided us through the...

  • Salt and Pepper

    It can be dangerous to us the salt and pepper in an South African restaurant. More details will folllow . . .

  • A typical tourist trap is...

    A typical tourist trap is Pretoria. One of the most over rated places I visited was the Voortrekker monument. Unless you are really interested in the history of the Boers, I wouldn't advise visiting.I have to admit that I was quite annoyed when I visited Pretoria, the one thing I wanted to do was visit the Parliament Buildings and, just my luck,...

  • Excellent trained thiefs are...

    Excellent trained thiefs are changing the touristy Cape point into a 'Watch out' area for all visitors:hold on to your sunglasses, photocams and don't start eating fruits! :)

  • Make sure you have South...

    Make sure you have South African Rand ready for the toll ways. There are a lot of them to and from Jo'burg, on the way to Nelspruit, and also to and from Swaziland, if you go there via the quick route.

  • Sun City, a couple of hours...

    Sun City, a couple of hours from Pretoria, is the ultimate tourist trap! It’s shiny and spangly andfilled with beautiful people. It’s South Africa’s answer to Vegas. Apparently it’s MichaelJackson’s favourite place in Africa! I think that everyone has to visit there, but it’s unbearablyoverrated. It does, however, have a golf course fit for the...

  • I suppose the Lion Park in...

    I suppose the Lion Park in Johannesburg could be though of as a bit of a tourist trap, but it's likely it's the closest you'll get to any lions! It wasn't that costly (to those with US dollars), but it was definitely fun.

  • As we visited Pilgrims Rest,...

    As we visited Pilgrims Rest, and we came back at our 4x4 a kid came to ask us for R 15,-- as he has washed our car. How insolent,we thought. Thanks kid!But,actually,it's been a bargain,as we saw later on our video, as the car has been very dirty.So we don't consider it as a Trap!

  • Sea View Animal Park--this...

    Sea View Animal Park--this wasn't quite what I had in mind when I was thinking of animals in their natural was more like a petting zoo with most of the animals being in cages. Though it was pretty fun to play with the baby monkey!

  • Yes, I went to the tip of...

    Yes, I went to the tip of Africa where the Atlantic and Indian oceans meet--BEAUTIFUL scenery. The water is damn cold or perhaps I would have swam. It is a great spot to see--and there are these monkeys running all over the place

  • Do Not Eat at Tsitsikama Park...

    Do Not Eat at Tsitsikama Park !!! Food is awfull !!!But the parc is beautiful! Really. Take a lunch box along.

  • If you don't like being in a...

    If you don't like being in a dirty place, where everyone's just getting drunk and/or stoned, don't go to Coffee Bay. I had a horrible time there. Getting away was awfully difficult. The Baz-bus doesn't go there, so you have to find your own transport to the nearest 'cumbi-station'.

  • Watch what you are buying,...

    Watch what you are buying, count the items and money. Check the quality of the goods you buy. If necessary open the packaging and check for quality.Below is a photo of a beautiful rocks in Cape L'Agulhas the Africa's southernmost tip.

  • White people will always tell...

    White people will always tell you that you can't take the mini-van, mainly because it's the kind of transport in and around Cape Town which the black people use and therefore supposed to be 'dangerous'.Well we are white and we took the mini-van for three months because it's cheap and drives frquently and picks you up wherever you stay - and...

  • Don't buy nice and clean...

    Don't buy nice and clean polished and painted masks made in Taiwan at the Airport or other expensive shop. Just buy them at the little craft markets you can find everywhere along the road.

  • Be careful where you buy your...

    Be careful where you buy your curios. Some wooden art sold on the side of the street is not treated and will start to disintegrate after a year or so, due do tiny insects in the wood. So the cheapest is not always the best.

  • DeWildt Cheetah Research...

    DeWildt Cheetah Research Centre Animals in cages- The staff rattling the cages,teasing the animals with food-Like obnoxious kids at a zoo. If you're going to go to Africa see the animals that are uncaged.

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