Garden Route

Garden Route Travel Guide

What you need to know

The Garden Route stretches along South Africa's southern coast, a breathtaking journey through nature's wonders. You'll find yourself surrounded by lush forests, golden beaches, and awe-inspiring mountains. This is no ordinary road trip; it's a chance to connect with nature in its purest form.

Start your adventure in Mossel Bay, a coastal town with a rich history. Here, you can explore the iconic Cape St. Blaize Lighthouse, offering panoramic views of the endless ocean. As you continue your journey eastward, you'll encounter the quaint town of Knysna. With its charming streets and welcoming atmosphere, it's the perfect place to enjoy fresh seafood at a local eatery.

The beauty of the Garden Route lies in its simplicity. You won't find extravagant resorts or bustling city life here. Instead, you'll be captivated by the simple pleasures of the region. Stop by the Tsitsikamma National Park, where you can take a leisurely hike along the Storms River Mouth Suspension Bridge, surrounded by ancient forests and rugged cliffs.

Your road trip wouldn't be complete without a visit to Plettenberg Bay. This coastal gem offers pristine beaches and opportunities for whale and dolphin watching. Take a dip in the refreshing waters or simply relax on the sandy shores.

Heading further east, you'll reach the charming town of Port Elizabeth, known for its friendly locals and laid-back atmosphere. Here, you can explore the rich cultural heritage of the Eastern Cape and indulge in some local cuisine.

The open road stretches before you, inviting you to embrace the beauty of the natural world. So, pack your bags, hit the road, and let the Garden Route weave its magic. It's a trip you'll cherish forever.

Best Time To Visit

The best time to visit South Africa largely depends on your preferences and the experiences you seek. For those who enjoy pleasant weather and wildlife sightings, the period from May to September, during the dry winter season, is ideal. During this time, game viewing in national parks like Kruger and Addo is exceptional, with animals congregating around waterholes.

If you're interested in cultural experiences and vibrant festivals, plan your trip around special occasions. December is a festive month in South Africa, with Christmas and New Year celebrations bringing a lively atmosphere. Additionally, Easter is observed with religious fervor, offering a unique cultural insight. Keep in mind that South Africa's summer, from November to March, is perfect for beach lovers, but it can get quite hot in some regions.

For a more tranquil and crowd-free experience, consider visiting during the shoulder seasons of April to May or September to October. During these months, you can enjoy milder weather, fewer tourists, and still catch some of the country's cultural festivities.

Travel Information

Currency: In South Africa, the currency used is the South African Rand (ZAR). It's advisable to have some cash on hand for small expenses.

Language: English is widely spoken and understood throughout South Africa. However, you'll also encounter other languages such as Afrikaans, isiZulu, and isiXhosa, depending on the region.

Credit Cards and ATMs: Credit cards are widely accepted in major cities and tourist areas. ATMs are readily available, so you can withdraw cash when needed. Visa and Mastercard are the most commonly accepted cards.

Plugs: South Africa uses Type D, M, and N electrical outlets. The standard voltage is 230V, and the standard frequency is 50Hz. It's advisable to bring a universal adapter to ensure your devices can be charged.

Safety: While South Africa is a beautiful destination, it's essential to stay vigilant and take precautions. Keep your belongings secure, avoid displaying valuable items, and be cautious when exploring unfamiliar areas, especially after dark. Follow local advice regarding safety, and you'll have a safe and enjoyable trip.