Nothing says summer like blue skies and braai fires. Have a mini-holiday with your Wild Card and pop into a park for the day to braai at these picture-perfect spots. By Magriet Kruger

Remember to pack your own braai grid and firewood or charcoal.

The Beach Bum Recommends

Preekstoel, West Coast National Park

Is this the prettiest place to braai in the country? With Instagram-worthy views of the turquoise water of Langebaan Lagoon, the braai spots at Preekstoel are in high demand.

It’s a mere 20m down to the soft white sand of the beach below, where you can enjoy a leisurely picnic in the shelter of the dunes. Kids will love playing in the calm, warm water. See if you can spot any harmless sand sharks! Note that alcohol is not allowed at Preekstoel and braai spots are claimed on a first-come, first-served basis.

Contact West Coast National Park on +27 (0)22 772 2144.

The Water Baby Recommends

Die Stroom, Bontebok National Park

On a sultry summer’s day you’ll want to stake your place at this braai site next to the Breede River as early as possible. Here you can spend the entire day lounging under shade trees, playing games on the grass and cooling off in the river.

There are picnic tables and braai spots scattered along the riverbank, with plenty of space for the kids to burn off energy. An ablution block with toilets and showers add to the convenience. Die Stroom has a function centre with expansive wooden deck that can be hired for big groups.

Contact Bontebok National Park on +27 (0)28 514 2735.

The Bush Fan Recommends

Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary, Swaziland

There’s something deeply restful about looking out over rolling green hills. After a day at Mlilwane, spent in the company of amiable warthogs, chirruping birds and those undulating hillscapes, you’ll feel completely revived.

The camp’s main braai areas for day visitors are located behind reception, a few steps away from a sparkling pool. Round out your visit with an adventurous activity by joining a guided horse trail or renting a mountain bike. You’ll be rewarded with close-up sightings of the sanctuary’s zebra, nyala and blesbok.

Contact Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary on +268 2528 3943.

The Game Lover Recommends

Fonteinkloof, Mountain Zebra National Park

In this beautiful corner of the Karoo, you can combine your braai with game viewing. Head out on one of the loops or 4×4 trails to search for the park’s namesake, as well as buffalo, lion and cheetah. During the hottest hours of the day, take a leaf out of the animals’ book and rest up.

Grassy Fonteinkloof picnic site boasts several braai stands, a large pool and an ablution block with showers. Just the spot to recharge your batteries and head out refreshed for the next round of sightings.

Contact Mountain Zebra National Park on +27 (0)48 801 5700.