Officially, the stretch of coastline from Mossel Bay to Storms River is the Garden Route.
However, our popular Garden Route itineraries may also include additional coastal destinations such as Cape Town and Port Elizabeth, as well as a couple of interesting inland destinations.
Regardless of the route you decide to follow, the spectacular scenery, abundance of wildlife, exciting adventure activities, friendly people and lovely accommodation of this part of South Africa will steal your heart forever and leave you with so many fantastic memories.
Starting at Mossel Bay, here are some of the Garden Route highlights we are confident that you will enjoy. In Mossel Bay you can spend a perfect few days engaged in a variety of activities, or simply relaxing on the beautiful beaches. This small coastal town enjoys plenty of sunshine throughout the year and is known as the historical capital of the area. From the intriguing Maritime Museum and The Granery to the Shell Museum and Cultural History Museum, many hours will simply melt away as you emerge yourself in the town’s past. Alternatively, be brave and go shark cage diving! Do some snorkelling, deep sea fishing, ship wreck diving or bridge diving. Test out the waters in a power boat, visit Seal Island, spot some whales or stay on land for some horse-riding on the beach, a game of tennis or golf or a warm soaking at the indoor heated pools. Mossel Bay is a great place for all kinds of holidays.
George and Wilderness are the next two lovely Garden Route stops. While George holds the main tourism offices for the Garden Route and boasts some of the best golf courses in the country, Wilderness is a picture-perfect piece of natural paradise. It has a long stretch of quiet, unspoilt beach, nearby nature reserves ideal for hiking, mountain-biking and bird-watching and the placid lagoon of the Touw River Estuary. It’s an overall wonderful holiday destination for exciting or relaxing water activities.
Knysna is certainly one of the Garden Route highlights. The absolutely beautiful lagoon (a protected marine reserve) is surrounded by big houses on the hills and plenty of luxury accommodations. The Featherbed Nature Reserve lies on the western head of the famous Knysna Heads, while the Knysna Elephant Park is a nearby sanctuary for these magnificent mammals and other animal species. Knysna is well-known for its unique collection of art and craft shops, the Waterfront with its numerous restaurants and for being the host of the ever-popular Oyster Festival.
Plettenberg Bay is without a doubt one of the most popular Garden Route stops. The hillside town is gorgeous, and the pristine beaches with their warm and gentle waves are the main attraction. The Keurbooms River mouth and marina provide the ultimate playground for water enthusiasts, while the nearby Monkeyland and Birds of Eden sanctuaries are great outings for the whole family. In addition, lovely hiking trails are available at the Robberg Nature Reserve and Plett is just south of the Garden Route National Park, a large area that now includes the Tsitsikamma and Wilderness National Parks.
A short distance along the coast from Plettenberg Bay is the Bloukrans Bridge, famous for offering the highest commercial bungi jump in the world (almost 70 storey’s high!) and Tsitsikamma, a beautiful indigenous forest with scenic hiking trails (including the Otter Trail) and opportunities for exhilarating zip-line tours. Both areas are fantastic Garden Route highlights that everyone loves. At Storms River you can go horse-riding and see the famous giant Outeniqua Yellowwood, referred to as ‘The Big Tree’. Nature’s Valley with its beautiful beach is also in this area.
For those who would like to explore a little further than the Garden Route, we recommend the inland town of Oudtshoorn, with the famous Cango Caves and some of the largest ostrich farms in the world, as well as several other towns along Route 62. Cape Town, one of the most beautiful cities on the planet and with attractions galore is a spectacular place to be in South Africa, while the Eastern Cape’s game reserves are some of the best in the country. Many are nearby Port Elizabeth, the friendly city, and other smaller seaside holiday destinations, such as Kenton-on-Sea.
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East Cape Tours is the Garden Route expert. We have extensive and personal knowledge of the area and places of accommodation, and with us, your holiday or honeymoon requirements are always top priority. When touring in South Africa, the Garden Route and all its beautiful towns are not to be missed – they certainly do live up to their incredible reputation! Contact Us Today and let’s make plans for the greatest holiday ever!