Travelstart Reveals What South Africans Miss About Home While Abroad

Travelstart, South Africa’s cheap flights provider, launched a survey across several social media platforms to find out what South Africans miss most about home while travelling or living abroad. The information gathered revealed some expected trends and a few unexpected ones.

South Africans Love Their Biltong and Rooibos Tea.

Travelstart Survey

Unsurprisingly, over 50% of the respondents said they missed biltong, droëwors, and braais. Durban curry and boerewors rolls came in close behind at 20% and many people also said they missed how affordable dining out is in South Africa compared to other countries.

When it came to drinks, desserts, and unique South African products, 25% said they miss Rooibos Tea, 20% said SAB beers such as Castle Lite and Black Label, and 15% miss a good bottle of Pinotage.
Peppermint Crisp tart was the favourite dessert with 24% and malva pudding and milk tart each got 20%. The beloved Mrs Balls Chutney was missed by 24% of respondents and Ouma Rusks by 17%.

Cape Town Wins The Hearts of Locals 

Travel Start Survey

Places such as Cullinan, Sabie, Kruger National Park, and the Wild Coast made it onto the list, but Cape Town proved to be the undeniable winner with over 50% saying it was the place they missed the most.

South Africans Love Road Trips, Christmas Outside, and Each Other. 

Almost 50% of respondents said being able to get into their cars and drive along the coast on a Sunday afternoon or go on a long road trip to the small towns is something they miss most. Many also said that stopping at Wimpy or the padstals along the way are a highlight of road tripping anywhere in South
Africa. An overwhelming majority also said that being able to celebrate Christmas outside in the warm sunshine and the friendly people are two of the best things about the country. Many respondents also expressed a love for the great weather and diverse landscapes and cultures.

Roadside Shopping and Being Able to Say Things Like “Ag man!”

Surprisingly, a few respondents said the sound of hooting taxis was something they missed while abroad.
A large majority also said they missed the petrol attendants, being able to buy everything from avos and newspapers to sunglasses and car chargers at the robots, and the South African accent and slang.

Turns out you can take people out of South Africa, but you can’t take South Africa out of its people.

About TravelStart

Travelstart is Africa’s leading online travel agency offering flights, hotel bookings, car rentals, vacation
packages and other travel services through their online booking engine. They have offices across Africa
and the Middle East where hundreds of Travelstarters are dedicated to rocking your travel world.

For more information and great travel deals go to:

You can also find Travelstart on  LinkedIn And Twitter

For company news and industry insights follow @TravelstartPR on Twitter.

I’d love to hear from you. Please share what you miss about South Africa if you have or currently live abroad, and I’d love to hear what you miss about S.A when travelling abroad too.

Information and Images Courtesy of Travelstart. 

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I Fell in Love with Clarens!

Situated 336 km from Johannesburg, 284 km from Bloemfontein and 389 km from Durban, Clarens is a gem sure worth exploring.
Clarens Free State

Clarens is a small town situated in the foothills of the Maluti Mountains in the Free State province of South Africa, and is nicknamed “The Jewel of the Eastern Free State.”

Clarens was established in 1912 and was named after the town of Clarens in Switzerland, where Paul Kruger spent his last days.

Close to Clarens is the Lesotho Highlands Project that brings in fresh water from Lesotho to feed into the As River, Liebenbergsvlei and Wilge Rivers, as well as into the Vaal Dam. Water from the Vaal Dam is then abstracted, treated and pumped into the rand water supply area.
Lesotho Highlands Water Project
Lesotho Highlands Water Project
Lesotho Highlands Water Project
Taryn in Clarens, Free State

I first fell in Love with Clarens in April 2010. With its spectacular sandstone mountains and wonderful climate combined with scenic views, it is no wonder why Clarens is one of the most picturesque spots in South Africa. This has made Clarens a popular getaway for city dwellers from Johannesburg, Bloemfontein and Durban among other places. Clarens is also situated about 20 km from the Golden Gate Highlands National Park.

There are various establishments you can choose from for the duration of your stay in Clarens. This ranges from bed & breakfast, Self-Catering, backpackers, lodges and farm guest houses in the surrounding area.
Handmade Arts & Craft by the locals

For art lovers you will enjoy pieces from local artists. Artworks range from locally sourced materials and are used to create little masterpieces.
Unique furniture made by the locals

There is no shortage of creativity in Clarens. As you walk around this beautiful piece of heaven you will find locally made furniture as well.

When you are not enjoying a meal in one of the many restaurants to choose from, you can take a stroll to one of their sweet shops. The minute you walk in your senses are awakened with the sweet aromas of chocolate. There is always a lovely variety to choose from and as a self confessed chocoholic, I never left the store empty handed.

For those who are more adventurous and wild at heart you can enjoy many of the activities on offer. From horse riding, abseiling, hiking, fly fishing, white water rafting and golf there is surely something fun for everyone to do.

I have had the privilege of visiting Clarens more than once over the years and each time I go there I am in awe of how beautiful and peaceful it is there. If you need a little getaway from the city for a short while then I highly recommend Clarens. For a solo trip or family getaway there is truly something for everyone.

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I left my heart in Blythedale.

A picturesque beach front that stretches for miles, a cool breeze blowing through my hair, the clear sky standing out proudly in its radiant blue colour, and in front of me for as far as the eye can see is the beautiful Indian Ocean.

Oh Blythedale you have stolen my heart. 💖

Blythedale Beach and The Indian Ocean
Blythedale Beach and The Indian Ocean.

Blythedale is situated just 45 minutes outside of Durban’s bustling CBD, on the North Coast of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. Blythedale Beach is a small village situated in the Blythedale Conservancy. As there are regular sightings of Bottle-Nose dolphins the region was also given the name “Dolphin Coast”.

Map showing where Blythedale is situated.
Map showing where Blythedale is situated.

Earlier this year I had an opportunity to spend a few days in Blythedale. A mere hour’s flight from OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg to King Shaka International Airport in Durban was the first leg of my Journey.

At King Shaka International Airport I was greeted by Reece from King Shaka Shuttle Services. As Blythedale is +/- a 40 minute drive north of the airport, I thought it would be fitting to get a shuttle service to take me there. With King Shaka Shuttle Services I arrived safely and on time at my destination. I found their services to be professional, affordable and their drivers exceptionally friendly. If you would like to know more about King Shaka Shuttle Services, or if you would like to use their services then you can go to their website

Once we had arrived at my destination and I had checked into my self-catering B Villa in Minivillas, my luggage was taken to my villa and when I turned around I was treated to this spectacular sight…

View from my Minivillas B Villa
View from my Minivillas B Villa.

Minivillas is A.A. recommended self-catering villas owned and managed by Jenni Ruttledge and is situated on Umvoti Drive in front of Blythedale Beach. There are 3 types of villas: The ‘A’ Villas which are situated on the first line beach front with the exception of one on the second line next to the ‘B’ Villas. As already mentioned the B Villas are situated on the second line and overlook the pool area and the sea. The Hacienda Duplex is the largest unit and is privately sited 160 metres from the beach overlooking the complex and sea.

My self-catering 'B' Villa during my stay in Blythedale.
My self-catering ‘B’ Villa during my stay in Blythedale.

As this was a solo trip I spend my days on the beach front, unwinding by the pool or I would take a walk down Umvoti Drive and explore Blythedale. Further down Umvoti Drive you can find private residence and other holiday Villas. There is a curio shop and basic amenity store in Dolphin Crescent at the top of the village. The main public entrance to the beach is in front of the Minivillas’ offices, but Minivillas has it’s own private entrance to the beach. So if I was no where to be found you knew I was soaking up the sun on Blythedale Beach. Blythedale Beach is protected by shark nets and is popular for swimming, surfing and fishing.

Beach ready
Beach ready

An unusual, but not rare sight would be our daily visit from the monkeys. They would visit me by the pool, jump on top of my villa, run across the roads and swing through the trees. These cute creatures are harmless, but it is advised not to feed them and keep your windows and doors closed if you are not indoors.

Monkeying Around
Monkeying Around

Traveling solo can be rewarding in so many ways. You learn more about yourself and this inspires growth. My time at Minivillas was a pleasant experience and the staff and guests alike were always friendly. If you are planning a solo or family trip soon and would like to know more about Minivillas, then you can visit their website ➡ Minivillas


My journey ended too soon and before I knew it Neel my driver from King Shaka Shuttle Services had come to fetch me and drive me back to King Shaka International Airport. I have fond memories of my time in Blythedale and I left my heart there until we meet again.

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