The Garden Route is a long stretch of road that bridges Cape Town and the Eastern Cape, and is undoubtedly one of the most scenic drives in South Africa. Passing through seaside towns, stunning forests and cliff-edged villages, the Garden Route is not only a beautiful drive but also hosts a plethora of wonderful locations and exhilarating activities. As authorities in the South African tourism industry, we’ve put together a short list of reasons that make the Garden Route a must see when visiting southern Africa.
- BLOUKRANS BRIDGE BUNGEE JUMPING
The Bloukrans Bridge bungee jump is the highest in the world at 216m. Those who have jumped both off Boukrans and out of aeroplanes will attest to the fact that the bungee is far more exhilarating and frightening (the good kind). Just outside the Tsitsikamma National Park, the Bloukrans bungee is one of the most well known adventure activities in South Africa and is definitely worth stopping for when traversing the Garden Route. Remember to book in advance on the Face Adrenalin website, as the jumping spots often fill up several days beforehand.
2. JEFFREY’S BAY
Jeffrey’s Bay is a spectacular seaside town on the southern coast of South Africa, most famous for its surf and its laid back, friendly vibe. J-Bay, as it’s referred to by the locals, is home to one of the best right-hand breaks in the world, which is why it is used as one of the locations for the World Surf League’s Championship Tour. The J-Bay open takes place every year in July, and has done for years. The surf is better in winter, between May and September, but on the whole is great year-round – especially for those who are learning. The locals always offer friendly advice with a smile, and being used to copious amounts of tourists are always welcoming to newcomers, whether in town or in the water.
3. MALARIA-FREE SAFARIS
One of the greatest things about the Garden Route is that visitors both local and from abroad don’t need to worry about malaria when visiting – something which can be quite off-putting, particularly when visiting Africa for the first time. Guests of the region can enjoy safaris and bush holidays without the worry of disease, and the safari packages we offer are specifically designed for ultimate relaxation and minimal worry. Our 4 day Garden Route Safari Tour is a great way to experience both the Garden Route and a safari holiday.
4. CANOPY TOURS
Canopy (or zip-line) tours were brought to South Africa several years ago after being observed in Costa Rica, where biologists with an inkling for adventure had set up zip lines to move quickly about the South American forests. Now considered an adventure activity in South Africa, they are a perfect way to observe nature and get an adrenalin rush simultaneously. Although not quite as thrilling as bungee jumping or gorge swinging, canopy tours are a fantastic activity for the whole family, and the Tsitsikamma Canopy Tour on the Garden Route allows for amazing views of the Tsitsikamma forests. Again, make sure you book beforehand, or chat to us to book on your behalf.
5. PLETTENBERG BAY
Plettenberg Bay (or just ‘Plett’) is renowned for it’s immaculate beaches and breath-taking coastline, as well as being a holiday hotspot for locals and tourists alike over the festive season. In addition to this, every year high school graduates flock to this seaside town to celebrate their newfound freedom, before beginning the next chapter of their lives (it’s essential to take this into account when planning a trip).
In addition to being a wonderful place to visit, Plett offers several memorable activities, including wine tasting at some of the best farms in the region and ocean safaris.
If you’d like to experience the Garden Route, as well as some of the other magical locations and adventures that South Africa has to offer, have a look at some of the customisable Luxury Safari packages that we offer. Bear in mind that we will happily organise and book additional activities, such as the above, on your behalf.
If you do happen to book a tour that includes a trip down the Garden Route, here’s a list of secret beaches along the way as a bonus.