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Nestled in the Northern Cape Province, this town which was founded in 1884 boasts a spectacular oasis. Upington is located alongside the northern banks of the tranquil Orange River surrounded by natural lush valleys and scenic views, it has become every outdoor enthusiast’s haven of adventure.

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Why visit Upington

  • Unwind along the banks of The Orange River whose beauty and tranquillity have been attracting people for many years home to landscaped gardens and impeccable sunsets it is a perfect day for anyone who loves the outdoors.
  • This town has been said to be a hotspot of adventure filled activities like hunting, boating, fishing, golfing as well as waterskiing, making Upington the go to adventure town in South Africa.
  • Spend the day wine tasting at The Orange River Wine Cellars, which is a five-cellar co-operative that is the second largest in the world-offering the best wine tasting tours in town.
Currency:
South African Rand (ZAR)
Time Zone:
UTC+02:00
Driving:
Drives on the left
Adaptor:
Type D, M and N (Voltage-230V: Frequency-50Hz)
Airport:
Upington Airport (code UTN)

The best time to visit Upington would be during the winters as the weather is pleasant enough to enjoy days out sight-seeing. The summer months can be quite unpleasant as it gets very hot, humid and crowded. The only thing visitors and locals would want to do in these temperatures is laze around the pool all day.

The most common language spoken in Upington is Afrikaans, the other languages that are spoken in this town include Tswana, Xhosa and English.

  • Upington was originally called Olyfenhoudtsdrif which means ‘Olive wood drift’ in English.
  • Upington was named after Sir Thomas Upington, the Attorney-General of the Cape.
  • The airport in Upington is home to Africa’s longest runway, in fact it is so long that NASA was able to land a space shuttle on the runway.

Things to see and do here include the SA Dried Fruit Co-operative, Orange River Wine Route, Orange River boat cruises and river rafting, camel rides, birding, Spitskop Nature Reserve, Augrabies National Park, Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park and many other attractions within the Northern Cape.

If you’re looking for goodies to take home after your trip, be sure to stop past The Mill. This farm style store is where you can get dried fruit, freshly baked goods, goat's milk feta cheese, arts and crafts, bath treats and home décor.

Getting around Upington is generally quite simple, with a few basic options for public transport. Minibus taxis are always in good supply, much like they are in any other South African town. If those are a bit too daunting, you can also take the bus, or even the train to get around the city and its surrounds. And of course, the airport caters to a range of Upington flights to and from the rest of SA.

The Upington Tourism Bureau is situated in the Museum Complex, and can be contacted on +27 (0)54 332 1196 if you need further help.

There are a few charming restaurants in this town that would satisfy your food cravings. South Africa has been said to have a significant ‘eating out’ culture and Upington is no different. There are restaurants that offer everything from Moroccan flavours to Chinese and West African dishes.

Some of the best restaurants to try when visiting this beautiful town include:

  • Dros-Upington
  • Bella Roma Grill & Pizzeria
  • Panarottis Upington

South Africa endorses the freedom of religion in its constitution. The black population of South Africa is divided into four major ethnic groups which include, Nguni (Zulu, Xhosa, Ndebele and Swazi), Sotho, Shangaan-Tsonga and Venda. Upington is not a very conservative city, but being a small town that was brought up and built around religion and culture it is something that plays a big role in the lives of the locals.

This is a fairly safe and small town, there are the usual occurrences of pick-pocketing which visitors need to be aware of. It is advised not to walk the streets alone at night, especially females.

Item Cape Town Johannesburg Upington
Meal, Inexpensive Restaurant R 90.00 R 100.00 R 85.00
Domestic Beer (0.5 liter draught) R 22.00 R 20.00 R 19.50
Cappuccino (regular) R 19.00 R 20.00 R 25.50
Taxi 1km (Normal Tariff) R 10.00 R 12.00 R 5.00
Pack of Cigarettes (Marlboro) R 35.00 R 35.00 R 26.00

Source:numbeo.com

Upington Airport (code UTN)

Food and beverages:The airport is a bit too small for added facilities such as restaurants, but it’s close enough to town that you can enjoy your java wakeup when you get to your chosen hotel.

Currency Exchange:You may be able to exchange currency at the Information Desk at Upington Airport – otherwise you will find all the usual banks such as ABSA, FNB and Standard in the City Centre.

Lost luggage:The Information Desk is where you can go to sort out any luggage or other issues on your arrival or departure.

Airport hotels:The nearest hotels include Protea Hotel Oasis, Protea Hotel Upington, Desert Palace Hotel and Casino Resort and Allianto Boutique Hotel and Spa.

Car hire:Upington Airport is a hub for Airlink, which offers scheduled flights to and from Cape Town and Johannesburg.

The information on this page is correct as of August 2016. While every effort is made to keep information as fresh as possible, Travelstart.co.za takes no responsibility for any of the information being out of date or incorrectly noted.


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