General Travel Information

The Northern Cape Province of South Africa.


The Northern Cape’s weather is typical of desert and semidesert areas. It is a large, dry region of South Africa with fluctuating temperatures and varying topographies. The scant annual rainfall (50-400mm) is unreliable and very much lower than evaporation and, in January, afternoon temperatures are usually between 33-36° Celsius. In 1939, at Goodhouse on the Orange River, an all-time high of 47.8° was recorded! Though somewhat unusual, summer temperatures do sometimes top the 40° mark.

In general Winter (June – August) days are warm and sunny, with the onset of night bringing dew and frost to supplement our low rainfall. Mornings can be chilly! Sutherland, in the Hantam Karoo, is one of the coldest towns in southern Africa. Its average minimum is -6° Celsius in winter. Snow often blankets its surrounding mountains.

  • Kimberley averages: January maximum: 33 °C (91 °F) (min: 18 °C (64 °F)), June maximum: 18 °C (64 °F) (min: 3 °C (37 °F)), annual precipitation: 414 mm (16.3 in)
  • Springbok averages: January maximum: 30 °C (86 °F) (min: 15 °C (59 °F)), July maximum: 17 °C (63 °F) (min: 7 °C (45 °F)), annual precipitation: 195 mm (7.7 in)
  • Sutherland averages: January maximum: 27 °C (81 °F) (min: 9 °C (48 °F)), July maximum: 13 °C (55 °F) (min: −3 °C (27 °F)), annual precipitation: 237 mm (9.3 in)


Kimberley has an airport and railway links with most major South African cities. The luxurious Blue Train and Rovos Rail travel from Pretoria to Cape Town via Johannesburg and Kimberley. Upington also has an airport that links with all major cities in South Africa. Car Hire Companies are represented at the airport and in major towns. In general, roads are in good condition.

The Blue Train passing through the Karoo – Photo credit here

Tourist Safety

Though the Northern Cape is a safe haven for tourists, we urge you to take the same precautions you would in any other city or town around the world. Avoid the unnecessary display of valuables and do not walk in deserted places or go out alone at night.

International dialling

The international dialling code for South Africa is +27.
The first 0 in the local dialling code falls away eg. 053 833 1434 becomes +27 53 833 1434.


Most banks are open Mon-Fri 09h00-15h30 & Sat 09h00-11h00. Auto banks (ATMs) can usually be found at petrol stations or in bigger towns.

Petrol/Diesel (Gas)

Though widely available in most towns, we recommend filling up before travelling long distances. On major routes and in bigger towns, petrol stations are open 24/7.

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