Exactly a year from now, the British and Irish Lions will be packing their bags for a trip like no other. The best players from England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales will unite on South African soil for a rugby tour to remember. The highly awaited tour will span the length and breadth of South Africa and what she has to offer, visiting some of the most extraordinary stadiums in world sport and climaxing in three Test matches against the newly-crowned Rugby World Cup champions, the Springboks. The British & Irish Lions have toured South Africa on 13 prior occasions, with the first tour taking place in 1891.
With South Africa being one of the continent’s most diverse destinations in the world and with an abundance of wildlife, accommodation to suit everyone’s needs and some of the world’s best food and wine, you really are spoilt for choice. We therefore thought it would be appropriate to feature some of our favourite things to do and see during your tour stay, along with the match schedule to keep you up to date. Contact us to book your trip now!
Match 1 & 7: Cape Town
– 3rd July 2021: DHL Stormers v British & Irish Lions
– 31st July 2021: Springboks v British & Irish Lions
Tick off some of the must-see experiences in between games such as Table Mountain, the historical city culture, Robben Island, the penguins at Boulders Beach, a drive along the Cape Peninsula, the Waterfront precinct and indulge in a healthy dollop of exceptional food and wine in the Cape Winelands! Cape Town is lucky enough to be blessed with all of these attractions and so much more.
Match 2: Port Elizabeth
– 7th July 2021: South Africa ‘Invitational’ v British & Irish Lions
Port Elizabeth, also known as The Friendly City, may not be able to show off with a large range of attractions like Cape Town, but it’s a pleasant city worthy of a few of days’ exploration. There are some of the most beautiful beaches, wonderfully preserved historic buildings, vibrant restaurants and breathtaking coastal hiking trails. Nearby are also some of the countries top safari lodges and wilderness areas.
Match 3: Durban
– 10 July 2021: Cell C Sharks v British & Irish Lions
Too often overlooked by travellers, Durban and KwaZulu Natal actually have it all in one province: unspoiled beaches; top epicurean and wellness experiences; award-winning safari lodges; mountains and history. For those heading out to the East Coast for the Lions match, there are certainly places of interest to visit along the coastline that should not be missed.
With upmarket accommodation options, trendy bars and stylish restaurants, Durban sure knows how to treat her visitors. With a wide list of activities, like a visit to Ushaka Marine World, one of the largest aquariums in the world, to snorkeling, kite surfing and whale – watching, Durban is a tropical city gem worth exploring.
Match 4: Nelspruit
– 14th July 2021: South Africa ‘A’ v British & Irish Lions
Nelspruit plays home to great restaurants, an interesting botanical garden, the world-renowned Kruger Park just a stones throw away, the oldest caves on earth – the Sudwala Caves, the breath-taking Panorama Route as well as the Chimpanzees at the renowned Jane Goodall Institute’s Chimpanzee Eden.
Match 5: Pretoria
– 17th July 2021: Vodacom Bulls v British & Irish Lions
Pretoria boasts lush gardens, buzzing nightclubs and eateries, and an array of rich South African history. Alongside this, its natural wildlife sanctuaries, some of which offer excellent game-viewing opportunities, are just a short drive from the city center. Pretoria is also just a stone’s throw from Johannesburg making watching the Lions’ Match in Pretoria very accessible.
Match 6 & 8: Johannesburg
– 24th July 2021: Springboks v British & Irish Lions
– 7th August 2021: Springboks v British & Irish Lions
Johannesburg is one of Africa’s biggest and most vibrant cities. The old city is a multi-cultural mixture of traditional medicine shops, culturally diverse restaurants, taxi ranks and ultra-modern skyscrapers. There are excellent museums, art galleries and organised tours of historical and political interest. The shopping is Southern Africa’s best and caters for all tastes. The nearby township of Soweto is Johannesburg’s most popular tourist attraction, I would recommend a visit!