What is the Best Month to Travel to South Africa?

Over the years, I've answered many questions about expat life in South Africa. "I want to come visit; what is the best time of year?" is the most frequently asked question by many prospective travelers. I'm always tempted to say, it doesn't matter. There really isn't a bad time to visit South Africa. But there are some factors to consider before you plan your trip.


Natural Disaster

If you are living in a proper house with the benefit of some education, you'll be safer from natural disasters in South Africa than just about anywhere else in the world. Earthquakes are practically unheard of, as are hurricanes (though there are instances of reported tornadoes), and the coastline along the Indian ocean is entirely protected from tsunamis.


When it Turns Cold in Joburg

Promptly every June begins that time of year again in Joburg. Whining time. And I’m glad to say it’s not just us expats who whine incessantly for two months. No, it is the Joburgers themselves who seem to suffer from collective amnesia every year, when predictably at the beginning of June it turns freezing cold and everyone is shocked how this is possible.


A Winter’s Day. In Summer.

If you’re holding out for a good winter storm and icy roads here in Johannesburg, you’ll have to wait until summer. Yep, the weather is kind of weird. Although still mostly very beautiful.

This was the scene in our yard last week, the beginning of February:

Looks like any good February day ... 


Two Weeks of Spring

In one of my earlier posts I berated collective Joburg for amnesia about the fact that winters here are cold, so that every year you have to deal with a shortage of things to keep you warm. But now I understand why.

About three weeks ago I was still faithfully cranking up the gas heater every morning ... 


Expat Joys – The Sun

giraffe before setting sun

I’m not sure of the official tally, but from our experience the sun shines about 359 days a year in Johannesburg. It’s definitely one of my greatest joys as an expat here. Even – and especially – in winter, when I’m shivering through the nights, the sun can always be ...