Best cities for expats in South Africa

 Best cities for expats in South Africa

Cape Town, one of the best cities for expats in South Africa.

South Africa is already a fantastic location for tourists. Many families, young couples, and singles alike choose it as a vacation destination every year. However, thanks to its diversity, culture, beautiful cities, amazing wildlife, and affordable lifestyle, South Africa has also become a desired destination for expats. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the best cities for expats in South Africa!

Port Elizabeth

Let’s start with Port Elizabeth. When considering a move to South Africa as an expat, this is a good starting point. Port Elizabeth is becoming a major industrial center. Modernization is slowly taking place and this city is a promising destination for expats in the future. Because of that, buying a place in Port Elizabeth may be a smart investment for the years to come.


For those who are looking for a quiet place to raise a family, Upington offers exactly that. The town is peaceful and friendly, and you can find many parks and beautiful streets. It is not the most fun place to move to, so if you are looking for a frenzied environment, you might want to skip this city and look for another destination.

People in South Africa are warm-hearted and spirited!

An African woman at a market, surrounded with colorful dresses.


If you are looking for a welcoming city with a warm climate and silky beaches, Durban is most definitely for you. It is the third-largest city in South Africa, and the cost of living is lower than in other cities.

Some of the most popular neighborhoods are Morningside, Durban North, Musgrave, and Beara.

Another reason why expats choose Durban as a living destination is because of the quality and affordability of the healthcare system. It matches some of the best countries in Europe, but the prices are much lower.


Another beautiful city that should be considered as a destination for expats in South Africa is Johannesburg. It is located in the northeastern part of South Africa, and it is considered to be the economic center of the country. Due to that, you can expect a bit hectic and noisy lifestyle. Nevertheless, it is still one of the most sought after locations for families.

South Africa is famous for water sports.

A man carrying a canoe on the beach in South Africa.

If you want to avoid the commotion and bustle of the city, you can move to a wealthier neighborhood. Even though the apartment prices downtown are cheaper than in the US and the UK, people choose upscale, gated communities, in order to avoid criminal activities in Johannesburg.


What makes Grahamstown a popular destination for expats in South Africa? First of all, it resembles old England. It is a vibrant city with a rich musical and cultural scene. Wide streets and greenery make it perfect for raising a family, but it is also a popular destination for young couples. It is abundant in bars, restaurants, and nightclubs where you can taste exotic drinks and national cuisine.

Cape Town

Cape Town is, by far, one of the best cities for expats in South Africa. Being in the southwestern area of the country, it is rich with culture and historic landmarks. Furthermore, it offers a mix of modern amenities and rustic neighborhoods.

Besides having a good school system, it also has plenty of attractive and exciting destinations to visit. And, it is the home of the famous Table Mountain. There is an area in the foot of the mountain, called City Bowl, and it offers high living standards with a superb school system.

If you are looking for gated properties, the best selection can be found in Tokai, Constantia, and Bishopscourt neighborhoods. It is a quiet suburb located just 25 minutes from downtown.

Waterkant and Bo-Kaap feature a selection of modern apartments and colorful houses. If you head out to the Sigil Hill, you can easily spot the neighborhoods due to the colors.

Cape Town offers a variety of choices of lifestyle.

Furthermore, Cape Town offers beach homes as well. The best neighborhoods that look over the Atlantic Ocean are Camps Bay, Bantry Bay, Fresnaye, and Clifton. If you ever wanted to purchase a beach home, this is the perfect place for it.

Finally, if you decide for a more rustic neighborhood with picturesque streets and walking routs, Hout Bay is the best choice.

As you can see, Cape Town is not a one-trick pony! It offers a variety of choices. Should you choose to move to Cape Town this year, just make sure to follow all the health regulation protocols.

Moving to South Africa

Relocating to South Africa is now easier and more simple than it ever was. Even though you might be pushed away from this location due to having to transport all your belongings to another continent, that process is not as scary as it may sound. Furthermore, if you give it a chance, you will see that South Africa is a beautiful place to live and raise a family.

What to expect in South Africa as an expat?

To conclude this short guide on the best cities for expats in South Africa, let’s quickly summarize what can you expect from this experience:

  • diverse neighborhoods
  • rich culture
  • beautiful cities
  • warm weather
  • an exciting change in your life
  • affordable housing costs
  • exotic lifestyle

These advantages of living in South Africa should be more than enough to entice you. If you ever had second thoughts about moving to South Africa, this article might help you make a decision for the better! Good like with whichever option you choose!

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