Arguably the most scenic drive in South Africa, the Garden Route should be on your list of “road trip to-do” list. The coast line is stunning and makes any drive worthwhile. So, where exactly is the Garden Route? Well, it starts in Mossel Bay, and goes all the way down to the Storms River in the Eastern Cape. Now because I didn’t have much time, I didn’t drive all the way to the Storms river. My journey ended in Plettenberg Bay. I also passed through the Karoo, which is a semi-desert area which forms part of the Western Cape so I’ll include some of the things to see there.
A small town situated in the Karoo, it is home to the great natural wonder that is the Cango Caves. There are beautiful limestone formations to see, and one can get a guided tour through the caves on the hour, from 9am to 4pm. Just remember to wear comfy shoes. It’s quite hot in the Karoo, so be sure to have a lot of water with you for the drive there. Other things worth seeing include the Cango ostrich farm and the crocodile farm. As far as the ostrich farm goes, you can no longer ride the ostriches because it’s been seen as cruelty to animals. However, you can still get close to them and feed them, and in return they’ll give you a neck massage you’ll never forget!
2. The Wilderness
Wilderness? Picture a neglected area, with overgrown bushes? Wrong! Here, you will find the views Drake was talking about! Seriously though, The Wilderness is a small town with breathtaking scenery. There’s a view point called Map of Africa, so look out for this whilst you there. It’s a good place to stay and just relax, but if you’re looking for more activity, then perhaps make this town a quick stop.
This was my favourite town along the Garden Route! There’s a variety of things to here, the highlight for me being the Rastafarian community at Judah Square. It’s a culture I actually know very little about, and this trip gave me a small window into what their world is like. They have tours should you be interested, and there’s a restaurant there to give you a taste into their cuisine. Knysna is known for its oysters, so perhaps when you had to the waterfront, order a few at one of the restaurants. If you are there in July, don’t miss the Oyster Festival! Just check the exact dates before you go. And lastly, a trip to Knysna would not be complete without going to see the Knysna Heads! There is a beach at the base of the heads so you can go for a quick swim too!
4. Plettenberg Bay (Plett)
Bunjee anyone? So the highest bunjee jump in the world, off a bridge anyway, is on the Bloukrans Bridge. This is easily accessible from Plettenberg Bay. A whooping 216m (709ft), it’s definitely one for the bucket list. There’s a great view point as well if you just want to watch, or you can also walk underneath the bridge. Plett has beautiful beaches where you can lounge around too, and the surfers can find a few surf breaks near the Lookout Beach.