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South Africa | Getting around...Ed Cubitt | 03 Sep 2014

Firstly, if you're backpacking in South Africa, the first thing to look up is the Baz Bus (http://www.bazbus.com/). I never actually used it because it didnt fit our route but by all accounts it is a great way to meet other people and is a safe way of getting around.

If like me, the Baz Bus doesn't really fit your route then hiring a car is a good option. Obviously it helps if more than one of you can drive. Otherwise, definitely don't drive at night. Lots of people walk along the side of very busy roads at night so plan enough time for your journey to avoid these dangers. Breaking down at night would not be fun either.

A good way of getting from city to city are the long distance coaches run by companies like Intercape, TransLux and Greyhound. They are affordable but just make sure you keep an eye on the bags at each stop, don't let yours wander off!

A word of warning, I would not advise travelling in the minibus taxis that you will see on the roads. They are called different things in different places - matatu in many swahili-speaking areas, dala-dala in others. They may seem cheap but they are driven very dangerously and broadly speaking the areas where they pick up and drop off aren't very safe. Plus, being in such a confined space on board means being pickpocketed is a risk.

 

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