More than a rugby player, Siya Kolisi is an icon in South Africa. As the first black captain of the South African rugby team, Kolisi led the national Springboks team to victory in the 2019 and 2023 Rugby World Cup.
South African Tourism South Europe Hub – which recently launched ‘Live South Africa!’ marketing campaign – will use Kolisi (now residing in France) as an official Brand Advocate, wearing the destination’s colours.
The Live South Africa! campaign is built on the back of the successful LIVE AGAIN campaign that started in March 2022. Highlighting breath-taking scenery, active adventure, cultural roots, avant-garde city lifestyle, and local gastronomy, the campaign showcased the exceptional diversity of SA products, for an unforgettable and unique holiday.
Taking this a step further with the new Live South Africa!’ campaign is an invitation to discover South Africa’s many wonders, and celebrate the unique country through three fundamental pillars: the beauty of our landscapes and wildlife, culture and gastronomy, and adventure.
“Warmly welcoming, authentic, and intense all in one, South Africa is the ideal destination to live unforgettable experiences that leave lasting impressions in travellers’ hearts. Our people, our landscapes, our nature, our culture, our gastronomy and our wines! So many exceptional experiences to escape everyday life, open up to new horizons, and reconnect with yourself,” highlighted an SA Tourism spokesperson.
South African Tourism helps travellers follow in Kolisi’s footsteps: as it highlights five symbolic places in South Africa, along with key events that have shaped his life and marked his career.
Gqeberha: birthplace of a legend
Kolisi’s hometown, Gqeberha (formerly Port Elizabeth), is the starting point of the South African rugby star’s exceptional career. At the eastern end of the famous Garden Route, this delightful coastal city is known for its beaches, national parks and historic town centre. Nicknamed “the friendly city”, Gqeberha is about one hour’s drive from Addo Elephant Park and Shamwari Private Game Reserve. It provides an authentic and warm preview of the South African culture. Here, visitors can acquaint themselves with the places that marked Kolisi’s youth, including the prestigious Grey High School and the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, where he began his professional career.
Mossel Bay: the beginning of an epic adventure
Located halfway between Cape Town and Gqeberha, it was in Mossel Bay that Kolisi was first spotted as a young rugby prodigy when he was only 12. That historic moment has put this little seaside village on the map and today it is one South Africa’s most celebrated coastal hidden gems.
Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit: debut in the national team
On June 15, 2013, Kolisi debuted in South Africa’s national team at the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit. A guided tour of the stadium will provide travellers with an opportunity to discover a venue symbolic of South African rugby history. The journey continues in Nelspruit, the gateway to Kruger National Park and its many neighbouring game reserves.
Stellenbosch: love and family
In 2016, it was in Stellenbosch that the legendary love story of Siya and Rachel culminated in a beautiful wedding ceremony in this charming and picturesque town, which has countless possibilities on offer to travellers: wine-tasting sessions in the heart of world-famous vineyards, walks and hikes across its wooded valleys and hills, horse-riding or cycling alongside the River Eerste. Whether it be its historic centre, or its lush green orchards and nature reserves, Stellenbosch and its surroundings are overflowing with tourist activities.
Durban: the Sharks’ golden boy
In 2021, Kolisi signed with The Sharks team based in Durban. This dynamic city on the shores of the Indian Ocean has a balmy subtropical climate and a wide variety of cultural, sporting and outdoor experiences on offer, including visits to the Phansi Museum, Segway tours along the famed Golden Mile and a chance to explore its luxuriant botanical gardens. As for gastronomy, Durban has fallen under the spell of Indian and Zulu cultures, serving up interesting traditional flavours. The city is also famous for its world-class surfing spots!