Southern African Highlights

The Garden Route

The Garden Route is South Africa’s tourist destination #1, for national and international tourists. The tourist infrastructure is highly developed and you find loads of Bed & Breakfasts, backpacker hostels, camp and caravaning site and hotels of all gradings.

The Garden Route stretches along the coastline from Cape Town to Port Elizabeth and offers quite a lot of different highlights - amazing National Parks, stunning beaches and marine life. Even the World's highest bungee can be found here.

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© Sebastian Hermanns - All Rights Reserved - last modified 2015-12-09 2:46 PM

How to get around?

There are actually many ways to make a Garden Route trip. Renting a car is the most convenient way, but taking the Baz Bus or one of the mainliners are also pretty good choices. If you do not feel like doing a tour along the Garden Route between Cape Town and Port Elizabeth on your own, you can also jump on one of the various multi-day tours.

Outeniqua Choo-Tjoe
The Outeniqua Choo-Tjoe is the last steam hauled scheduled passenger train operating in Southern Africa and runs daily (excepting Sunday) between George and Knysna. The route of the Choo-Tjoe is from George, via Victoria Bay, Wilderness, Sedgefield and Goukamma to Knysna.
LINK: http://www.outeniquachootjoe.co.za/
26 Aug 2010 - Transnet to stop operating the Outeniqua Choo-Tjoe train

Garden Route accommodation

The Garden Route is South Africa's tourist destination #1 (except for Cape Town, of course). Therefore all kinds of accommodation can be found along the ca. 800km of coastline between Port Elizabeth in the east and the Mother City in the west. You'll find backpackers (Eastern Cape - Port Elizabeth to Tsitsikamma | Western Cape - Plettenberg to Cape Town), as well as Bed & Breakfasts, lodges, hotels and more.

Garden Route Highlights [more tours »]

Hermanus Whale Watching & Wine Tour
Duration: approx. 8hrs
Location: Cape Town
Travel along the dramatic Cape Coastline to Hermanus for arguably the best shore-based whale watching in the World and the chance to see a magnificent Southern Right Whale breaching.
Close to the southernmost tip of Africa, Hermanus enjoys a richly deserved reputation for its fantastic shore-based whale watching, between July and November. From the excellent vantage points on the rocky cliff path that hugs the coastline from one end of Hermanus to the other, whale watchers can get within 20 meters of these magical creatures as they cruise along the coves. The area is a haven for the Southern Right Whale, but other species including Humpbacks, Killer whales plus Bottlenose and Common dolphins are occasionally sighted. The world’s only ‘Whale Crier’ alerts visitors to the location of the whales by blasting his kelp horn.
The return journey to Cape Town takes you through Hemel-en-Aarde (Heaven & Earth) Valley which is dotted with wine farms. Here the climate is particularly suited to growing Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay vines. Here you stop at a boutique winery to sample some wines of outstanding quality (On Sundays the wine estates are closed so a visit the Cheetah Sanctuary in Somerset West is visited as an alternative). Continue on to Cape Town via the pretty apple-growing region of Elgin, then wind your way through Sir Lowry’s Pass with spectacular views of the Cape Peninsula.
 

Oudtshoorn Tour
Duration: 7 hours
Location: Oudtshoorn, Little Karroo
Head for the hills via the Robinson Pass, which follows an old elephant trail through the Outeniqua Mountains and into the hauntingly beautiful, semi-arid Little Karoo.

Visit the Cango Caves, described as the eighth wonder of Africa. We also stop at the Cango Wildlife Ranch, dedicated to the breeding of endangered wildlife to increase the diversity of the gene pool of certain large cats and wild dogs, offers an interesting and informative experience with the opportunity to touch a Cheetah or Bengal tiger or to cage dive with crocodiles as optional extras.

An ostrich show farm offers an overview of the historic and the modern industry. There is time to ride an ostrich ( if you weigh 75 kg or less) or to have a close up experience with these big birds.

 

Guided canoe trips
Duration: 4 hour(s)
Location: Knysna
The trip follows the river through the awesome vegetated dunes on this coastal meander. The river is open to the ocean and a trip up or down the river is possible depending on the tide. The canoe trips starts from the Goukamma Nature Reserve picnic site and this is an unreal experience for any age group. Family groups and children are welcome. The river is extremely safe and is shallow enough at the picnic site to allow very safe swimming after your trip in summer! We are able to paddle about 6km up the river making a round trip of approx 12k for the hardened paddlers and more adventurous visitors.
 

Tsitsikamma Canopy tours
Duration: 3 hour(s) - Location: Stormsriver Village, Tsitsikamma
Stormsriver Adventures is a rural based eco adventure company, situated in the scenic Village of Stormsriver. It's surrounded by indigenous forest which is located on the garden route on the East Cape of South Africa.

The Tsitsikamma Treetop Canopy Tour is the first of its kind in Africa. Safety is paramount and the system has been built to the highest civil engineering standards. Imagine the Tsitsikamma Forest....30 meters above, as you gently glide on 10 slides to 10 platforms high up in Giant trees. The platforms provide an unbelievable view of this enchanting New World. Spend a few minutes relaxing while your guides enthusiastically explain the ecology of the forest - pointing out different trees and magnificent giant ferns way below. You may even sight the Knysna Loerie and the elusive Narina Trogon. About 3 hours later you exit the forest, having undertaken the journey of a lifetime. A delicious light lunch will be waiting for you at our restaurant.

 



Coastal Hiking

Duration: 5 hour(s) - Location: Mossel Bay
St Blaize Trail Coastal Walk - follow a contoured path along the coast west of the St Blaize Lighthouse. Learn about the unique bio-diversity, ancient archaeology and the use of local plants in traditional medicine from our knowledgeable local nature guide.
Enjoy a picnic lunch with opportunities to swim in the warmer Indian Ocean water.
A short road transfer is required to return to Mossel Bay.
Starting point at the St Blaze Lighthouse at Mossel Bay point.. 5 - 6 hour hike through to the Pinnacle Poit area.
Enjoy a picnic lunch with opportunities to swim in the warm waters of the Indian Ocean.

 
 
Garden Route Map Riversdale Albertinia Stilbaai Witsand Mossel Bay Victoria Bay Wilderness Sedgefield Kynsna Plettenberg Bay Stormsriver George Oudtshoorn Western Cape Map Eastern Cape Map Bavianskloof Little Karoo N1 N12 N9 N2 N2

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