South Africa's Garden Route takes you along one of the world's best coastlines; there's no wonder it's so famous. It has it all. Golden sands, frontier towns, craftsmen's houses and vast national parks, and generally speaking, the natural beauty is dialled up to ten wherever you look. The route technically starts at Mossel Bay and runs to the Storms River in the east is just over 200km. However, we recommend including Cape Town and the Winelands as we have here. The best time to go? Between November and March is the best weather-wise, though this is peak season so prices and number of tourists are high. Between June and November, you can catch whales in Hermanus whilst they enjoy the numerous pockets of fynbos (the unique flora of the region), though it is cooler then.
On landing into Cape Town International airport you will be met by our team on the ground and driven to Camps Bay, to Sea Five. Sea Five is a great little boutique hotel just 300 metres from the sea in beautiful Camps Bay. With just 7 rooms all with en-suite is small and personal. Each of the rooms has either great views of the ocean or table mountain behind. There is also a pool and they serve a great breakfast!
Babylonstoren is a Cape Dutch farm with vineyards and orchards surrounded by the dramatic mountains of the Drakenstein Valley. It has an exceptionally well–preserved werf dating from 1690. A fruit and vegetable garden of botanical diversity supplies a remarkable restaurant. Guests staying at an exclusive farm hotel enjoy access to the entire farm, plus facilities like a spa and gym. The aim is to have guests feel more comfortable, more alive among warm smiles and the simple daily rhythm of the farm.
Today you head South over the Riviersonderend Mountain pass to the quaint coastal town of Hermanus. This is the best location in the world for land-based whale watching. In season the bay in front of Hermanus fills with Humpback and Southern Right Whales. An incredible backdrop for a good lunch in town. Allow 90 minutes for the drive from Franschoek to Hermanus. Birkenhead house make a wonderful stay - it is one of our favourite properties in South Africa!
Today you continue to Mossel Bay to African Ocean Manor on the beach, a five-star luxury hotel located right on the beach and near all the best restaurants, shops etc. Enjoy two nights here.
Today you will continue along the garden route to Plettenberg Bay. This is a beautiful area and your lodge is set a short walk from the beach. This gives you the best of both worlds. The chance to stay on a lovely working equestrian farm but also all the fun of the beach. Rooms here are contemporary and stylish. Plettenberg Bay is a great destination for a huge range of activities and also has excellent restaurants. Choose from whale and dolphin watching trips, adrenaline activities like bungee jumping or simply have long lazy lunches at a beachside restaurant.
Today you will head into the Eastern Cape to Kichaka Game Lodge. This is a luxury game lodge which offers 5 star Big 5 game viewing. You will generally have two game activities a day – one early in the morning and then again in the afternoon until sunset. The wildlife is more active in these cooler hours and game drives are more rewarding. During the heat of midday, you can relax at the lodge, in the pool or enjoy a massage.
Over the years we have researched and refined the list of vehicle equipment that we provide. The equipment is identical in every vehicle but we always ensure you have the essentials for each country and its respective driving conditions.
All our itineraries are tailor made, but here are some of our favourite routes and camp combinations.