About The Garden Route
The Garden Route, South Africa’s very own eden, our paradise..a place we can call home..
The Garden Route region consists of several towns, is world renown and a very popular area to visit in South Africa. It is located in the southern part of South Africa right against the coast and the area stretches from Swellendam in the west to Natures Valley in the east ( 340 km ) and from the town of George in the south to Beaufort West in the north ( 240 km ). It is the place in South Africa, where you will find the most diversity in terms of scenic nature and beauty. We have everything here. Mountains, ocean, Fynbos, klein karoo ( semi-dessert ) , indigenous forest, white sandy beaches, rocky coastline and roaring rivers!
The area between Mossel Bay and George is mostly covered with fynbos whilst east of George up to Tsitsikamma is more forestry. North of Mossel Bay you will find the Outeniqua Mountain range. When you cross this, you will find yourself in the Klein Karoo which is a semi-dessert area. Oudtshoorn is known as the Ostrich capitol of the world and the famous Cango Caves is located here.
Activities in the Garden Route
Mossel Bay & George Area
Mossel Bay have quite a few activities, please visit the Mossel Bay Activities page to view some..
George have beautiful mountain drives, Victoria Bay, Herolds Bay and great golfing. Fancourt is probably the most famous of the courses but Ernie Els’s Oubaai Golf Course is also here. George is also a very popular hiking destination with great forest and mountain hikes.
Outshoorn is a major icon in the Klein Karoo, just North of the Garden Route, and is a very popular destination to visit. Here you will be able to see Ostriches from close range and even have opportunities to ride on these non-flying huge birds. The Cango Caves is located here and you can do cave tours. The tours are great for the whole family and very informative. Oudtshoorn also have other amazing animal activities. The Cango Wildlife Ranch is on the outskirts of town and here you will see Crocodiles, Lions, Cheetah, Tigers and many other wild animals. The ranch is a great way to spend half a day with the family and they have a restaurant and kids areas as well. You can also do some animal interaction experiences here.
Elephants Experiences in Oudtshoorn
About 7 km outside Oudtshoorn, en-route to the Cango Caves, you will find Buffelsdrift Game Lodge, where you will also find the Oudtshoorn Elephants. At Buffelsdrift, you can do wildlife safaris and horse back safaris. But a main attraction here is the amazing elephant experiences they offer. You can spend some time with their elephants, feeding them, sitting on them, playing with them and even walking and riding them. Kids love this activity and it is sure to amaze you.
Wilderness & Knysna
Wilderness will entertain you with great restaurants. It is a small village with a lot of art and crafts stalls. Wilderness beach is also a massive sandy beach. You can do some paragliding from the hills from where you will have amazing views whilst gliding like a bird.
You can also kayak or canoe up the calm river surrounded by forest filled gorges. When you cant go any further, you can beach your canoe and follow a hiking trail that leads to a waterfall where you can enjoy a picnic. This is great for families or couples. Wilderness also have a few day hiking trails. They are forest hikes and you will experience a rich bird life. Knysna Loeries and King Fishers are common here.
Knysna is known for its beauty. The lagoon area is popular for boating and enjoying time at the waterfront. You can take a paddle boat cruise to the Featherbed Resort across the lagoon. There you will find hiking trails and a great restaurant. The paddle cruise will take you from the harbor to the Knysna Heads and stop off at the resort. Knysna is also a popular golfing town with the well known Pezula and Simola golf courses nearby. The area is mostly covered by indigenous forest. We would say this is the Hiking, Trail Running and Mountain Biking mecca of South Africa.
Knysna’s Thesen Island is a favourite spot to dine. At the Knysna Heads you will also have great views over Knysna, the lagoon and the ocean. At the bottom of The Heads you will find a restaurant with unique dishes to enjoy. You can also SCUBA dive the Paquita wreck that lies in the heads. This is a drift dive for the advanced diver. The lagoon also offers great snorkeling!
Plettenberg Bay & Tsitsikamma
The Plettenberg Bay and Tsitsikamma area is filled with family activities. Here you will find great beaches, fishing spots and ocean adventures. Just outside Plettenberg Bay you will find “The Crags”. Here you will be able to visit Monkeyland, Birds of Eden ( biggest bird aviary in the southern hemisphere ), Jukani ( Lions, Tigers, Leopard, Black Leopard, Hyena and other great cats ) as well as the Elephant Sanctuary.
The world’s highest commercial Bungy Jump site is located just outside the area. This 216 meter jump off the Bloukranz Bridge is sure to give you an adrenalin rush like never before! At Tsitsikamma you can also do various activities like Black Water Tubing, Kloofing and Canopy Tree Top Tours etc.