THE CELEBRATED GARDEN ROUTE
PRICE: 1195 dollars per person based on 4 people private guided tour
PRICE: 695 dollars per person based on 2 people self-drive
The price of this 6 day itinerary included for private guided tour:
– All entrance fees in national cultural parks, museums and tastings
– 1 boat cruise (Knysna)
– All breakfasts, 1 barbecue
– Bed and breakfast.
A 6 days tour of South Africa offering exciting activities along the way, walks in the forests , observation of rare and colourful birds, impressive caves, or bungee jumping for the more adventurous. Whether you are intrepid traveler or looking for beauty and tranquility, the Garden Route is the perfect to start your exploration of South Africa.
- Hermanus, the world’s best land based whale watching destination, between July and December
- Cape Agulhas, the most southerly point of the African continent.
- Oudtshoorn, in the heart of the little Karoo, which was known as the Ostrich capital during the 1920’s, the extravagence can still be seen in the Ostrich palaces.
- Knysna and Plettenberg Bay wealthy coastal towns reminiscent of the Mediterranean coast
- Tsitsikamma National Park an endemic forest of ancient hardwood trees that extends to the coast and offers beautiful walks along old elephant tracks.
- Mossel Bay , a town that was discovered by the first Portuguese sailors of the fifteenth century (Bartholomew Diaz or Vasco de Gama) opening the trade to India.
- Swellendam, fourth oldest town in the Republic of South Africa, with many historical Cape Dutch buildings.
- Montagu, Worcester and Paarl, charming small towns situated in the wine regions of the Breede and Berg River Valleys.
Day 1: Swellendam
We leave Cape Town with our first stop at the Cheetah Outreach and community-based programme created to raise awareness of the plight of the cheetah and to campaign for its survival. Here we see and interact with endangered wildlife, the majestic cheetah, bat eared fox, meerkats and caracels.
We continue along the spectacular Clarence Drive on our way to Betty’s bay where we visit Africa’s largest penguin colony.
Next is the charming town of Hermanus known for the world’s best land based whale watching spot between months June to December.
Our journey continues along the Southern Cape Coast with a lunch stop in Elim, a 19th century Moravian Missionary village and find quaint white cottages with thatched roofs.
Cape Agulhas, the southern most point of the continent and also renowned for its ancient Khoisan fish traps. Thereafter we head to Swellendam where we will spend the night at the foot of the Langeberg mountains in this historical town with it’s many beautiful Cape Dutch buildings.
Day 2: Knysna
We head to Mossel Bay which gets its name from the huge quantities of black mussels found along the coast . The first European to set foot in this sheltered bay was Bartolomeu Diaz in 1488 and nine years later Vasco De Gama. We visit the museum.
Continuing our journey along the Indian Ocea we stop for lunch in beautiful Victoria Bay, renowned for its perfect waves then, via the pristine Wilderness area with its freshwater lakes, estuaries and some of the worlds highest sand dunes we arrive at Knysna
A sunset cruise on the famous Knysna Lagoon is a must.
Accommodation is a Guest House.
Day 3: Knysna
Before leaving on our journey we admire the view of the “Heads” which is formed by two cliffs creating a narrow passage at the entrance of the lagoon.
We pass through the ancient indigenous forests which was and possibly still is, home to the last of the forest elephants.
We head to Nature’s Valley, a haven amongst the forest with beautiful beaches. This area is one of South Africa’s best kept secrets, boasting exceptional hiking trails and superb dramatic coastal scenery
On to the Tsitsikamma National Park where we walk amongst huge Yellow wood trees and cross the Storms River mouth via a suspension bridge…beautiful scenery and thrills guaranteed.
A well worth visit to The Big Tree, estimated to be between 600 and 800 years old, stretches its distinctive yellowwood leaves skywards, towering over the other trees in the canopy.
Lunch: we enjoy the meal overlooking the mighty Indian Ocean.
On the way back we stop at the famous Bloukrans Bridge, home to the world’s highest bungee jump. We can partake of this thrilling adventure or watch mesmerised!
Next is Plettenberg Bay, a small chic tourist town with lagoons and great beaches for surfing, diving and marine mammal boat cruises.
We return to Knysna, dinner at a restaurant of our choice.
Accommodation at a Guest house
Day 4: Oudtshoorn
We head to Oudtshoorn, capital of Karoo, via the Outeniqua Pass and the ‘seven passes’ which follows an ancient elephant migratory route. The Karoo is a region with the highest concentration of succulent plants in the world and also extremely rich in fossills. At Oudtshoorn, ostrich capital of the world, we visit an ostrich farm, where the flightless birds are bred for their meat, eggs, feathers and leather.
The Seven Passes route is a 75km trip that takes us past seven gorges cut deep by rivers flowing to the sea. Legendary engineer Thomas Bain designed the road in 1883, but it was a tough and difficult business for the great road engineer
Day 5: Montague
After breakfast we visit the Cango Caves said to be the most beautiful in the world where a succession of galleries, finest dripstone caverns and extraordinary limestone formations can be admired.
The Cango Caves are located in Precambrian limestones at the foothills of the Swartberg range near the town of Oudtshoorn,
We continue to Montagu along the famous Route 62 with picturesque villages and local handicraft.
This charming town, founded in 1851, is situated amongst spectular Cape folded mountains, a climbers paradise. Here we have the opportunity to bathe in the outdoor, natural hot water springs.
Day 6: Cape Town
On our final day we follow the Breede River valley wine route passing through the towns of Robertson and Worcester. We visit the Karoo National Botanical garden which features the unique plant species of this semi dessert region.
We drive through the Huguenot tunnel, Africa’s largest. This mountain range surrounding the Cape was a huge obstacle for the first pioneers leaving the Cape for the interior.
On to Paarl situated in the Berg River Valley and founded by the French Huguenots in 1650’s
We make our way through vineyards up to the bulbous granite outcrop domed mountain where we visit the Taal Monument, the only monument dedicated to a language which has a splendid vista all the way to Table Mountain.
We continue our journey back to Cape Town.
Back at the hotel