Time for a road trip | Garden Route and Klein Karoo

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Time for a road trip | Garden Route and Klein Karoo
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Time for a road trip | Garden Route and Klein Karoo
Get In Touch

The announcement that intra-provincial travel is allowed again is welcome relief for all South Africans, particularly for the local tourism industry, with the ability to travel The Western Cape, of course, is ripe for local exploration, with road trips the perfect opportunity for safe, affordable exploration.

Packed full of experiences, wide open spaces, epic coastal towns – and just as epic inland towns – the Garden Route and Klein Karoo is easily one of best road trips you could take. Perfectly set up for long weekends away, the likes of which you may never want to return from. From zip lines that cross over an ocean and bungee jumping to world class restaurants and incredible safari experiences, it’s time to reclaim the road trip and visit the Garden Route and Klein Karoo.

Stock up the pantry

The first rule of road-tripping is to always ensure you have enough fuel for your car, but the second has to be that you have enough to fuel yourself. ‘Pad kos’ is the order of the day for any aspirant local road tripper and thankfully a trip down the Garden Route has plenty of options for pit stops. The Ou Meul Bakery in Riviersonderend is a local favourite with their freshly-baked pies ranked amongst the very best, while the Ou Tronk in Riversdale now houses a coffee shop and hosts a weekend market on Saturdays. You could also take an ever-so-slight detour down Route 62 and visit the iconic Diesel and Crème for one of their legendary ‘shakes (grab a burger if you’re especially peckish), it’s well worth the extra time on the road. And hey, it’s a road trip!

Bike it

Are you an avid mountain biker? Are cleats your go-to choice of footwear? Then you will find plenty of time to don them while in the Garden Route and Klein Karoo. Home to large sections of the Cross Cape Cycle Route, the region is home to some of the most epic trails in the country, and to be honest, the best way to see it may very well be from the saddle of a bike. Trails like the Harkerville and Cairnbrogie MTB trail are tailor-made for cyclists looking to tear things up, while the Garden Route Trail Park – between Knysna and George – is a perfect day out for families that ride together.

Find adventure

The Garden Route and Klein Karoo is widely considered the adventure capital of the Western Cape, with tons of thrills – and some spills – to enjoy. Surfing at Vic Bay, zip-lining over the ocean or jumping out of a plane in Mossel Bay, paragliding in Sedgefield, bungy jumping at Bloukrans Bridge, SUPing in Knysna, diving with seals in Plett… the list really is endless and it’s not just for the extreme adventurers, with an abundance of marine wildlife along the coast and wide-open spaces to explore inland if you’re looking for something a little less adrenaline and scream-enducing…

Park It

… which brings us to the abundance of nature reserves to explore! Months of lockdown means everybody is desperate to get out into those majestic wide open spaces the area is famous for and you won’t be disappointed. The Garden Route is a natural wonderland and has plenty to choose from, with the likes of Garden Route National Park, Robberg Nature Reserve, Goukamma Nature and Marine Reserve, Wilderness National Park, Outeniqua Nature Reserve, and Grootvadersbosch Nature Reserve just some of the unbelievable sanctuaries you can visit in the region. You really are spoilt for choice.

Market shopping

One of the best ways to spend your weekend time in the Garden Route and Klein Karoo is to hit the various village markets dotted throughout the region! Baked goods, artisanal coffee, arts and crafts, kid-friendly, there is no better way for families to kick off the weekend than a trip to the market. The Saturday markets across the region – including the Wild Oats Community Farmers Market (Sedgefield), the Harkerville Saturday Market (Plettenberg Bay) and more – are operating again, ensuring that you can dig into the very best of the local delights while visiting.

Nature and Outdoors GALORE!

If you’re looking to immerse yourself in nature, get up close to some of Africa’s most iconic wildlife (land and marine), and get ‘lost’ in the great outdoors, then you will have come to the right place. The Garden Route and Klein Karoo is THE place for all of it. We’ve mentioned all that great outdoors up above, but if you’re wanting to experience wildlife, the region caters to all budding zoologists, with the Big Five (land and sea) found here. Here you will experience some of the best whale watching experiences in the country (we’re looking at you Plettenberg Bay and Knsyna), and if you’re lucky, you will be joined by dolphins as well. When it comes to land-based safari, there are plenty of options, including Gondwana Game Reserve, Buffelsdrift Game Lodge, Plettenberg Bay Game Reserve and many more.

Where to eat

Few industries have been hit as hard as hospitality by Covid-19 and we urge you to please be patient as restaurants re-open under current regulations. Thankfully, restauranteurs are hardy by nature and the Garden Route has plenty of eateries for you to visit for sit-down meals. Like with accommodation, we would suggest you phone ahead to see if your favourite is open or touch base with the various tourism offices based in the region to ensure you’re not disappointed.


There are a plenty of accommodation options available in the Garden Route and Klein Karoo, but we would suggest you get in touch with the local Regional Tourism Offices to see who is open from this weekend and beyond. The accommodation sector has been hit hard by the lockdown regulations and not all local providers are quite ready to open under the Revised Level 3 lockdown regulations.

*Please remember to be kind to the staff when you do visit the various establishments and experiences. Remember operators are under huge pressure to ensure you have a great time, while also ensuring they operate within the regulations. This is a new space for all of us and we need to navigate it together.