• South Africa
    • Stellenbosch
Academic Year, Fall, Spring
Subject Areas
African Studies Agriculture Anthropology Art History Arts Biology Business Conservation and Preservation Ecology Education English Environmental Studies Gender Studies Global Studies Health Sciences History International Relations Linguistics Literature Photography Political Science Public Health Public Policy Religious Studies Service Learning Sociology Theology +17

Program Details

Program Type
Degree Level
High School Diploma Bachelors


Starting Price
Price Details
AIFS Abroad is a premier provider of study abroad programs. Program fees cover tuition and housing, and over 50% of our study abroad participants receive financial support from AIFS Abroad in the form of scholarships or grants. Coordinated AIFS Abroad Flight Packages with major airlines are also available.
What's Included
Accommodation Activities Classes Some Meals Travel Insurance
What's Included (Extra)

Round trip flights and airport transfers included for students on the optional AIFS Abroad Flight Package.

Sep 08, 2023
Dec 10, 2019
12 travelers are looking at this program

About Program

Spend a J-Term, summer, semester or academic year in Stellenbosch with AIFS Abroad. Earn up to 15 credits studying at the University of Stellenbosch. Courses are taught in English.

Choose your course of study on the Full Curriculum Program. Focus on South African history and culture through the General Education Program. Volunteer opportunities and a Learning for Sustainable Community Engagement Program are also options.

Live in the student resident hall at the heart of campus life.

You’ll enjoy cultural and social activities such as:
• Sporting events
• Beach excursions
• Trips to local craft and food markets
• Vineyard tour
• Hiking trips
• 6-day trip along the famous Garden Route
• Day trips to Cape Town, Robben Island, Cape of Good Hope Nature Preserve and Boulder’s Beach (home of 3,000 African penguins).
Optional excursions include a 3-day trip to the Cederberg Mountains and a 5-day visit to Addo Elephant Park and

Video and Photos

Program Highlights

  • 6-day Garden Route Tour
  • Day trip to Cape of Good Hope and Boulders Beach
  • Earn up to 15 credits and transcript issued by Stellenbosch University
  • Volunteer and service learning opportunities
  • Meal allowance and group dinners

Popular Programs

AIFS Abroad in Stellenbosch, South Africa

Earn 3-semester credits during a 2.5-week January term study abroad program in Stellenbosch, South Africa with AIFS Abroad! Choose one of the following two courses — Travel Photography or South African Wine and Winemaking — taught by faculty of Stellenbosch University. Courses are taught in English.

AIFS Abroad in South Africa

Spend the summer in the captivating city of Stellenbosch, South Africa with AIFS Abroad! You’ll earn up to 6 credits through the General Elective Program at Stellenbosch University. Courses are taught in English.


AIFS Study Abroad Scholarships

AIFS Study Abroad Scholarships, Grants & Financial Support

We believe a study abroad experience is an essential component of well-rounded university education and we are committed to providing financial assistance to as many students as possible in support of their goal to study abroad. AIFS also offers internship and study abroad + internship blended programs to support the development of personal and professional skills.

$500 - $5,000

Program Reviews

5.00 Rating
based on 25 reviews
  • 5 rating 100%
  • 4 rating 0%
  • 3 rating 0%
  • 2 rating 0%
  • 1 rating 0%
  • Academics 4.25
  • Support 4.9
  • Fun 4.9
  • Housing 4.85
  • Safety 4.45
Showing 1 - 8 of 25 reviews
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

South Africa will change your life!

The best part of this program was our onsite director, Hestea. She is a Stellenbosch local and took us on excursions to see the most beautiful parts of her hometown. Being able to travel with her was a unique opportunity that added so much value to all of our trips. The academic life in Stellenbosch is very different from a standard university in the United States. Classes meet once a week, and there is usually only a paper and a final. It takes a lot of independent commitment to make sure you do well. Class discussions were interesting because there are students from all over the world. This made group projects a challenge, especially with some language barriers, but I always looked forward to gaining new perspectives from my international peers. I liked that our class schedules made it easy to have time for seeing more of the town and taking trips to Cape Town (about 40 minutes away). Stellenbosch is a fun town for college students. There's always something to see or do, and it's fairly easy to navigate. I enjoyed walking or cycling most places, but uber is also a very affordable option. The housing situation looks different each term depending on how big the group of international students is. I had a great experience with housing. I lived in an apartment with 3 other girls from the United States, and we had plenty of space. It was cool to live in a building with other international students, because I made connections from all over the world. It did make it more difficult, however, to connect with local South African students. Still very doable, but it's definitely something you have to seek out for yourself! There is so much diversity in South Africa, and I'm thankful for the friends I made there. Can't wait to visit again soon!

What would you improve about this program?
More opportunities to connect with local South African students.
73 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

This program is amazing!

I would absolutely recommend this program or any AIFS program to anyone looking to study abroad. This program gave me the once in a lifetime chance to travel to a beautiful country and immerse myself in a culture that I would not have been able to if I did not study abroad. I so appreciated the fact that AIFS is an inclusive program, meaning that your meal plan, housing, travel insurance, excursions, etc. are included in the cost of tuition. I also found the flight package they offered unbeatable. My favorite excursion I went on during this program was completing the world's highest bridge bungee jump! Through my photograph course provided, I was able to learn how to take professional grade photos of all the wildlife I saw, including a family of elephants. I highly recommend this January term program to anyone looking to go somewhere amazing and adventurous.

What was the most surprising thing you saw or did?
The most surprising thing I saw was a wild giraffe, in it's natural habitat. This was apart from our safari tour but our tour guides still stopped our vehicle and were able to see it and take photos! It was amazing.
58 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Learn Unexpected Lessons in Stellenbosch!

Every international experience helps you grow and provides context for your own life and experiences. But none of my prior experiences have opened my mind quite in the same way that this program did!

I selected this program because it was on a continent I'd not yet journeyed to and because it fell within the guidelines of the research grant I was awarded that summer. While short (8 weeks or so flies by so fast!), I felt challenged by the classes and cared for by the staff and local students. That's right, I said local students! Getting to meet and spend time with locals is unfortunately not always a given during academic-focused programs, but this unique program uses a crew of local volunteers who take classes with you (this is their winter term, so they are giving up their school break to hang out with international students - so cool), live in the dorms with you, and help guide your transition to the new city. By the end of the experience, it felt like a private school full of international friends.

In addition to that component, two other things really stand out about this AIFS experience: 1) The option to take part in a Garden Route one week tour when the classes are done. Your classes are finished, you've made close friendships, you've had a unique culture experience and now you get to take it on the road for a week! So fun and solidified the friendships I had made in the previous weeks. 2) The classes are interactive, exploratory, and created to open your mind beyond the classroom. I am struggling to think of a single course I took that didn't have a field trip or cultural experience linked to it. Taking the class about HIV & AIDS in South Africa? Well, not only do you learn about how it is affecting the nation, but you actually go to a site where locals are working to create legal action to make the change and get to sit down with them. Taking any class about Apartheid? You are learning in a classroom where political decisions were made about this injustice and learning from teachers who participated in the first open elections. You visit townships to see first hand how that still plays out in today's society.

It's not for the faint of heart, but it will open your heart in a big way.

What would you improve about this program?
There are certain aspects of the program that cannot really be helped, but there are a few things to know before committing (that you may or may not understand from the brochure):
1) Although it may be your summer term, it is taking place over South African winter break. While I mentioned that there are a wonderful crew of local students to interact with, the rest of the campus is mostly empty because students are gone visiting their families. If you were looking for a busy city and lots of students hogging the cafeteria, you may need to adjust your expectations or do one of their semester programs.
2) The dorms are comfortable and safe, but there were quite a few of my fellow students who were disappointed with the food and cleanliness. Keep in mind that cleanliness, access to certain foods, and hot water are all cultural expectations of the USA - don't expect to find things exactly to your liking all the time. That's where the growing and gratitude happens!
58 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

A Summer in Stellenbosch

As a student with a STEM major, I was only able to do a summer study abroad program, and it was not long enough. The AIFS Public Health Program in Stellenbosch, South Africa was applicable to my field of study, as well as during the ideal time of year and within the continent of my choice. This program was truly the perfect option for the opportunity of a lifetime.

During my stay, I was able to live in the dorms with other students from all over the US and the rest of the world, and was even lucky enough to room with a South Africa, who knew all of the local places to go and see, and all of the activities to do. The first of two classes I was able to take were an introduction to the political history of the country, which was taught in the most engaging, and memorable method of instruction I've experienced in my college career. The second, which related to my career, was the public health program, where I was able to learn about the local health care system and health problems that plague the country in a personal and eye-opening manner.

Throughout this time, classes were balanced by experiencing the beautiful country, nearby cities, culture, and tasting all of the amazing food that South Africa had to offer, all with the best company a person could ask for. As a whole, the organization of courses and excursions that AIFS offered for this program made my study abroad the best I could have possibly asked for. It's the best thing I've done for my studies and for myself, and I wish only that it could've lasted longer.

62 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Stellenbosch, South Africa

My experience in Stellenbosch, South Africa with AIFS was one of the most influential moments of my life so far. My time there was a really pivotal moment in both my personal life and career plans. There were many opportunities for myself and others to learn about and experience the rich culture. South Africa has eleven national languages, so it was so different and great to meet people who spoke completely different languages from town to town. Living there, we were able to experience the every day lives of South Africans and feel extremely welcome there. We also experienced the diversity that is present in an individual town and from town to town across the country. It was extremely important to me to be able to travel to different parts of the country and learn about their culture. This experience allowed me to be immersed in their culture and be challenged. It allowed me to grow as an individual and I believe that it presented me with a purpose in life that I plan to pursue.

58 people found this review helpful.
Read my full story
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

It's the Little Things

After I began to settle into my new surroundings at Stellenbosh (or as the locals call it "Stellies") I began to start searching for a club or an activity to join to get more involved on campus. I decided to join the surfing club and I am so glad that I did. We had lessons every Thursday evening for about a month and they provided us with surf boards and wet suits. I live in Rhode Island so water sports are almost second nature to me, this does not mean I am any good at surfing but I like to think I have gained some experience now looking back at it. All the students piled in a bus and we drove about 20 minutes to strand beach. The scenery was gorgeous with mountains on either side. We usually finished up right as the sun begun to set and it made for the most beautiful, perfect ending to the day. I still remember catching some baby waves getting up with this cheesy grin on my face and everything just became so surreal to me how fortunate and greatful I am for such an amazing opportunity to study in South Africa.

What would you improve about this program?
If I could improve this program I would make for more opportunities for the international students to interact with the local students. After living and traveling with only other Americans in my program I think I would of been more immerged in the culture if I was able to live or learn with the local students.
70 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

the most magical country in the world

I chose to go to South Africa after always dreaming to make it to Africa in my lifetime. Now I am so in love with that country and wish I could share it with all of my family and friends. The culture is awesome, it's literally the most beautiful place in the world, there are tons of things to do in Stellenbosch and you are just a short train ride from Cape Town for weekend trips. If you love adventure there is plenty of hiking around and different trips offered from Cape Town throughout the country. I was there in the summer and it only rained maybe 5 times in the entire 6 months I was there. The accommodation was awesome and was even better than back in the states (I had my own bathroom and a wonderful cleaning lady). Mama H provides you with nothing but the best support, and is there for any question or qualm you may have about anything. You can drink the tap water which I was surprised about and there is no danger of malaria or any other diseases unless you travel. Stellenbosch and Cape Town are very safe as long as you practice the same safety measures that you would if you would visit a strange place or a big city at home.

What would you improve about this program?
I honestly never had any issues with my program or wished it to be anything else than what it was.
66 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Why Go Anywhere Else?

South Africa was the most incredible experience of my life! The people are amazing, the food is great (best sushi), the trips allow you to do everything from jumping off the worlds highest bungee bridge to seeing the big 5 up close, and these are just the trips included in the program. At the end of the semester a number of us were able to travel with our closest friends! Five friends and I went backpacking and drove from South Africa to Botswana to camp on the Okacango Delta to Zambia to see Victoria Falls and back! In South Africa you'll get to experience the best wine tasting and student life as well as daily trips to the beach, hiking, shark cage diving, paragliding, shopping, and so much more! You'll make life long friends and you may end up going back after graduation like myself! Trust me, you do not want to miss out on this!

What would you improve about this program?
Cheaper flight! Haha :)
69 people found this review helpful.

Questions & Answers

When I went I used Facebook to meet up with the others who were in my program. If they search "South Africa Spring 2016" into Facebook they will probably find their program, or another program around them and can join the group there. The cost of living there was very cheap when I was there a few years ago when $1 was equal to about 7 rand. Right now $1 is almost 15 rand so it is probably even...