Chapman Freeborn blog

Top South African airports for private jet travellers

Private jet charter to South Africa couldn’t be easier. Whether you’re exploring Table Mountain in Cape Town, going on safari in the Kruger, doing business in Johannesburg or enjoying the beaches and nightlife in Durban, the following airports are your entry into the top South African private jet destinations:

Cape Town International Airport

Located 20km from Cape Town’s downtown district, Cape Town International Airport is the second largest airport in South Africa and a busy hub for international and domestic travellers. As you fly into Cape Town from the north you’ll have your first sight of enigmatic Table Mountain and the Cape Coast. Retail outlets are located on the lower (Arrivals) level of the terminal as well as at departure gates. Restaurants are on Level 3 above Departures.

Cape Town is the second largest city in South Africa with a stunning location on the southwestern tip of the country. The city’s mountains, rivers, botanical gardens and white sandy beaches are a fabulous backdrop to a rich cultural life. Table Mountain is a World Heritage Site, and other attractions include Robben Island, St George’s Cathedral, the Kirstenbosch National Botanical Gardens and District Six Museum.

Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport

Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport is located 57km north east of Nelspruit in Mpumalanga, South Africa and is the main airport gateway to the Kruger National Park. The airport blends in well with its African veld environment: thatched roofs and dark stone floors and it has a coffee shop, restaurant, bar and gift shop and money exchange facilities, as well as free Wi-Fi.

The Kruger National Park in north-eastern South Africa, is one of the country’s largest game reserves. Its high density of wild animals includes the Big 5: lions, leopards, rhinos, elephants and buffalos. Hundreds of other mammals make their home here, as do diverse bird species such as vultures, eagles and storks. Other attractions in the area include the Blyde River Canyon.

Skukuza Airport, Kruger Park

Tiny Skukuza Airport is conveniently located directly in the Kruger National Park in South Africa’s Mpumalanga province. Its proximity to this outstanding wildlife reserve makes transfer to private game lodges and SANParks lodges and camps very easy. Once you’ve collected your hire car, you’ll be among the Big Five in minutes.

O.R. Tambo International Airport, Johannesburg

O.R. Tambo International Airport is located in Kempton Park, Gauteng, South Africa, just 21km from downtown Johannesburg – roughly a 30-minute drive. The Gautrain, a direct link from the Sandtown area of Jozi, takes passengers to the airport in 25 minutes. The airport has many lounges, retail and banking facilities, as well as restaurants and Duty-Free shopping.

Johannesburg is the largest city in South Africa and the country’s financial and business centre. Families will love the Lion Park, and don’t miss the Cradle of Humankind, a UNESCO-listed World Heritage area that is renowned for its claim that humans originated here. Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu both grew up in the sprawling Soweto township (there are organised tours) and the Apartheid Museum in Soweto is sobering but highly recommended. Mandela’s former residence is now the Mandela House museum.

Pretoria Wonderboom Airport

Originally built in 1937, it’s mainly used by light aircraft and private jets and is named after the original farm on the site. Just 21km from Pretoria, we recommend at least a one-night stay in Wonderboom to experience the Nature Reserve – and the incredible Wonderboom tree. This 1,000-year-old fig tree boasts 13 different trunks and now spreads out over 50m. Pretoria is the administrative capital of South Africa, and known as the Jacaranda City for its thousands of jacaranda trees. The semi-circular Union Buildings encompass the president’s offices and hosted Nelson Mandela’s inauguration.

King Shaka International Airport, Durban

Also known as La Mercy airport, King Shaka is the main international airport serving Durban, and lies about 35km north of the city centre. It was constructed to serve football fans during the 2010 World Cup.

Durban, a coastal city in eastern South Africa’s KwaZulu-Natal province, is known for its African, Indian and colonial influences. Refurbished for the 2010 World Cup, the seafront promenade runs from uShaka Marine World, a huge theme park with an aquarium, to the futuristic Moses Mabhida Stadium. The Durban Botanical Gardens showcases African plant species and is highly recommended, as is the Victoria Street market.

Port Elizabeth International Airport

Port Elizabeth International Airport, located in the Eastern Cape province in South Africa. It was formerly known as H. F. Verwoerd Airport. Outlets in the airport include a café, restaurant, electronics and footwear shops, and ATMs. Port Elizabeth Airport is a five-minute drive from the CBD and the beach front.

Port Elizabeth is located on Algoa Bay and renowned for its superb beaches, as well as its activity as a port. The Donkin Heritage Trail takes in the Old Hill neighbourhood’s Victorian landmarks. Coastal boat tours are recommended for spotting whales and seabirds, while other wildlife reserves are home to rhinos, elephants and many other big game.

Bloemfontein Airport (Bram Fischer International Airport)

As with many South African airports, Bloemfontein Airport underwent significant upgrading in preparation for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. It may be a small airport but it has all the facilities you’d expect from its larger sisters, including currency exchange, ATMs, shops, restaurants, free Wi-Fi and conference facilities.

Bloemfontein is the capital city of the province of Free State of South Africa and its name means ‘fountain of flowers’. The sixth largest city in South African hosts the incredible Annual Royal Zulu Reed Dance where thousands of young Zulu women assemble for the Dance in the hope of finding a husband. In addition, the Oliewenhuis Art Museum and the Boer War Museum and the Botanical Garden are highly recommended.

Contact us today to arrange your private jet charter to South Africa.