It is a fact that South Africa has a high crime rate. However ….. this is because there is a lot of crime in the townships. In the “normal” neighborhoods and areas, the crime rate is no higher than in another country. Crime therefore mainly occurs in the townships and disadvantaged neighborhoods in the big cities, where these townships are close by. People mainly live in the townships, who despite the fact that a great deal has improved since the abolition of apartheid, still constitute the majority of the poor population. Many people from neighboring countries have also fled to the townships near major cities for economic reasons. There is too little work, too much poverty, too many drugs and alcohol abuse, which causes crime.

In the big cities you have to be extra careful in certain areas, like everywhere else in the world. In the smaller towns in particular you will find that the South Africans are hospitable and friendly and they will receive you warmly.
Always make sure that you arrive at the destination before dark. Searching in the dark with sometimes poorly lit roads is looking for problems. Prefer not to take lifters if you have no experience with this. Do not place your camper or car in places where this is not allowed. Do not wear an excess of expensive jewelry in view. In short, be careful and adhere to the normal safety regulations that everyone who travels must observe.
Fortunately we have never had to deal with holidaymakers who have happened to something. It is more often the population who fall victim. The tourists who are raided are usually people who have entered a township on their own or hang out in the cities late at night. Walking around with showy valuables during the day is also not wise. That is asking for problems.

Stories about tourists who have been robbed get the publicity and are often told by people. Here in South Africa everyone thinks the Netherlands is an unsafe country because of stories that make the news. Everyone in South Africa also thinks that all Dutch people are on drugs and all cities are like Amsterdam. The attack on Queen Beatrix in Apeldoorn was front page news here. Negative news comes in the media, positive news rarely.

The danger of wild animals is almost never mentioned. Yet this is something that is important to report. Do not leave your camper or rental car in a reserve where this is not permitted. Even though an elephant seems so innocent. It is and remains a wild animal. Just like monkeys, they are nice to see, but very cheeky. Keep your windows closed if monkeys are nearby. Never leave your car or camper in a game park if this is not allowed.

Finally. We have been living here for years and feel no less safe here than in the Netherlands. There too we had to deal with burglary and we had to lock our doors at night. We do that here too. Of course we use common sense and we recommend that every vacationer also. As is the case for every holiday country.

In short: don’t be put off by stories, but come and experience for yourself how many friendly and hospitable people live here. Also read the reactions of our customers (click here)!

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