Large 12322483 10153310403510678 5725959691064398502 o

Cape & Garden Route Adventure

A South African holiday for people who love the great outdoors. Hike, kayak & experience the best that Cape Town has to offer and then set off along the world famous Garden Route where you swap your car for hiking boots & trek the Dolphin Trail. Your holiday ends on a real high, searching for the Big 5 on safari in the Eastern Cape.

Tailor-made Classic 15 days

'From Price' is the average price per person for ground arrangements for two people sharing.

Flights are typically an additional $1,058 per person economy class from London

People love what we do
Tourdust is rated 4.9 out of 5 stars


…We were really happy with the service we got from Tourdust which can be best described as friendly, efficient and expert.....

Missing Matthew McSweeney. See all Reviews

Itinerary

Overview

  • Hike up Table Mountain & Kayak with penguins
  • Visit Robben Island
  • Stay on an independent working wine farm
  • Enjoy the sea views on a 2 day trek along the famous Dolphin Trail
  • Spot the Big 5 on safari in the Eastern Cape

This holiday has been designed for people who want to get out there and really experience South Africa. Your holiday begins in Cape Town, which effortlessly blends urban chic with the great outdoors. During your stay, you will take a hike up Table Mountain, kayak to a penguin colony and explore the wild Cape Peninsula. Having explored the best of the Cape Nature, you will also learn more about the darker history of the place, with a guided tour of Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela and countless other political prisoners were imprisoned.

From Cape Town, you’ll drive east to one of our favourite discoveries in the region, the Beaumont wine estate. This is an opportunity to experience Overberg life on a real wine farm. There are two simple, authentic cottages on the farm and days can be spent wine tasting, taking a gentle stroll through the vineyard or trekking / mountain biking up onto the Fynbos-rich mountain trails. Whale season runs from June to end of October so if you are visiting at that time, you will be able to enjoy nearby shore based whale watching in Hermanus which is 30 minutes.

One of the longest drives of the trip takes you to the Knysna to some delightful cottages on the shores of the lagoon. This is an excellent spring board for exploring the area. Foodies will love sampling the fresh oysters from the lagoon superb and you won’t want to miss canoeing to some hidden waterfalls. More adventurous travellers might like to try out kloofing or abseiling . Further afield, you can visit the ostrich farms at Oudtshoorn or the Karoo which is a two hour drive inland.

The highlight of this trip has got to be the Dolphin Hiking Trail which covers 17 kilometres in two days in the stunning Tsitsikamma coastal belt, staying in comfortable four star accommodations. All meals are included, baggage is transported between overnight stops and you are accompanied by local guides. Group size is minimum 2 and maximum 12 with 1 or 2 guides.

Your final stop, the Amakhala Reserve, is a beautifully situated malaria free private reserve in the Addo / Eastern Cape area. Set in a primeval landscape, Amakhala has a well-balanced wildlife population boasting the big five and substantial herds of plains game. Staying in the beautiful intimate Quartermains, you’ll enjoy morning and afternoon game drives in open topped 4WDs with expert wildlife guides. For travel June to October a safari in the Great Kruger or non-malarial Madikwe is worth considering

Day-by-day

Itinerary in Brief
DAY 1: ARRIVE & EXPLORE THE V&A WATERFRONT
DAY 2: CAPE TOWN – CAPE PENINSULA TOUR WITH GUIDED KAYAKING
DAY 3: CAPE TOWN – GUIDED WINELANDS TOUR
DAY 4: CAPE TOWN - TABLE MOUNTAIN HIKE & ROBBEN ISLAND TOUR
DAY 5: DRIVE TO OVERBERG REGION
DAY 6: OVERBERG REGION
DAY 7: TRAVEL TO GARDEN ROUTE - KNYSNA
DAY 8: GARDEN ROUTE – KNYSNA
DAY 9: GARDEN ROUTE - KNYSNA
DAY 10: GARDEN ROUTE – DOLPHIN TRAIL
DAY 11: GARDEN ROUTE – DOLPHIN TRAIL
DAY 12: GARDEN ROUTE – DOLPHIN TRAIL
DAY 13: DRIVE TO PRIVATE RESERVE
DAY 14 ON SAFARI
DAY 15: DEPART PORT ELIZABETH

Full Itinerary
DAY 1: ARRIVE & EXPLORE THE V&A WATERFRONT
Most international arrivals are in the early morning, so you should be at your hotel by lunchtime. Your guest house is a short walk to the centre of Cape Town and the city bowl area which has a number of good restaurants and small independent shops. The rest of your afternoon is at leisure. We recommend taking it easy, perhaps heading down to the V&A Waterfront to soak up the atmosphere. The Victoria and Albert Waterfront is the historic heart of Cape Town, buzzing with cafes, restaurants, street performances and stunning views of the working harbour and Table Mountain.
Meals Included: None
Accommodation: Acorn Guest House
Transport: Self-drive from Cape Town Airport. +/- 30 minutes.

DAY 2: CAPE PENINSULA TOUR & GUIDED KAYAKING
After breakfast, you will set off to Simon’s Town for your guided kayak tour. Heading away from the beach past the harbour, you will paddle to Boulder’s Beach which is home to a colony of Africa penguins. If you’re lucky, you may see them swimming alongside you in the water, or hopping on to the beach. The double kayaks are very stable and perfect for those with no paddling experience. After you’ve seen the penguins, you will stop on the beach for refreshments and a swim before heading back. We suggest a lunch at Simon’s Town waterfront before driving on to Cape Point Nature Reserve and Cape of Good Hope where you can visit the old lighthouse and go for a bracing walk. Back in the car, you return to Cape Town via the spectacular Chapman’s Peak Drive, passing through Hout Bay and the trendy Camps Bay area. Depending on the time available and your interests, you may be able to fit in a wine tasting in the Constantia Valley, a visit to the quaint town of Kalk Bay or take a short walk through Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens.
Meals Included: Breakfast
Accommodation: Acorn Guest House
Transport: Self-drive with guided kayak trip in Simons Town

DAY 3: CAPE TOWN – GUIDED WINELANDS TOUR
Today will be spent visiting vineyards and artisanal producers in Stellenbosch, Franschoek or Paal with your guide, Pamela, a passionate foodie and local resident. You will get to taste some fine wines and delicious food in incredibly beautiful surroundings. Pamela knows the vineyards inside out and tailor-makes your day out based on your interests on particular wines and foods. Pam is driving so you can just sit back and enjoy yourself.
Meals Included: Breakfast
Accommodation: Acorn Guest House
Transport: Private guided full day Cape winelands tour with collection from Cape Town

DAY 4: TABLE MOUNTAIN HIKE & ROBBEN ISLAND TOUR
This morning is an early start for your Table Mountain Hike. There is no better place to get a sense of Cape Town than from the top of Table Mountain amidst the lush Fynbos, indigenous to the region. Most tourists venture no more than 5 minutes from the Cableway, however we recommend getting away from the crowds on a guided walk. For those wanting something gentle, there is a 2 hour circular walk which involves taking the cable car up the mountain and hiking on the plateau to Maclears Beacon, the highest point on Table Mountain. The trail passes stunning viewpoints and marsh and Fynbos bush. For the more adventurous, we will arrange a more challenging trek climbing the Mountain via Skeleton Gorge or from the Twelve Apostles which will take about 6 hours. With both options, you will take the Cableway down afterwards.
This afternoon is a slightly more sobering experience, with a visit to Robben Island, the former prison for political prisoners. Reached by ferry from the V&A waterfront, the prison played host to many prisoners over the years, including Nelson Mandela
Meals Included: Breakfast
Accommodation: Acorn Guest House
Transport: Transport to/from Table Mountain. Self-drive to the waterfront for Robben Island tour.

DAY 5: DRIVE TO WHALE COAST
Today you leave Cape Town behind, heading East on the N2 Highway. As soon as you leave the city limits, the scenery changes with massive horizons falling into stunning mountain ranges. The Fynbos, mountains & wild coast off the Western Cape's Whale Coast is worth a visit year round but is further elevated during the whale season from July to October.
Bot River, a short distance inland from the Whale Coast, is not the kind of place tourists usually stop at, which is a good thing, as it is a lovely find. These simple farm cottages on the family run Beaumont wine farm in Bot River are a real gem and offer the perfect opportunity to experience Overberg life on a real wine farm. There are two simple, authentic farm cottages on the farm, each boasting open fireplaces in the kitchen and lovely wood-burning stoves in the living room. Days can be spent wine tasting, taking a gentle stroll through the vineyard or trekking up onto the Fynbos-rich mountain trails. There is no swimming pool, but a dip in the dam is a great way to cool down on a hot day, and the jetty is a beautiful spot for a sun downer. If you fancy a day at the beach, you are only half an hour from the beaches of Hermanus and the Whale Coast.
Meals Included: Breakfast
Accommodation: Chateau Beaumont Cottages in Mill House
Transport: Self Drive Cape Town to Bot River +/-2 hour driving

DAY 6: WHALE COAST
If you can pull yourself away from relaxed charm of the wine farm, then a visit to the Coast during the whale season is an absolute must. Hermanus is an easy drive as is Walker Bay Nature Reserve, both offering easy to access land based whale watching. Outside of whale season, there are good beaches in Hermanus and the Coastal trail running through Hermanus is highly recommended.
Meals Included: None included, self-catering
Accommodation: Chateau Beaumont Cottages in Mill House
Transport: Self Drive

DAY 7: GARDEN ROUTE - KNYSNA
Today sees you leaving Bot River behind and continuing your journey in an easterly direction along the N2 coastal route to Knysna. This journey will take the best part of the day and we recommend stopping at some of the quaint towns along the way, such as Swellendam, Albertina or the lovely beaches at Mossel Bay. If you want to get out of the car for a couple of hours, we suggest stopping at Wilderness National Park and hiring a canoe to paddle up to Touw River Waterfalls. It is a gentle hour of easy paddling upstream through meandering reed beds until you can go no further, from that point there is a boardwalk through the forest to the waterfalls. It is a very gentle river and no prior experience is required.
Once you have arrived at your accommodation, you can relax on your sundeck and enjoy your waterfront view.
Meals Included: No meals included
Accommodation: Under Milkwood Chalets in a waterfront cottage
Transport: Self Drive +/- 5 hours driving

DAY 8: GARDEN ROUTE - KNYSNA
The next two days see you based in Knysna. The area is the perfect base for exploring Tsitsikamma National Park and heading to one of the superb visitor attractions such as Monkeyland or Knysna Elephant Park. Further afield, Oudtshoorn is only a two hour drive inland. This arid Karoo region is famous for the Cango Caves and Ostrich farms which brought great prosperity to this area with feather fashion in the Victoria era.
Meals Included: No meals included
Accommodation: Under Milkwood Chalets in a waterfront cottage
Transport: Self Drive

DAY 9: GARDEN ROUTE - KNYSNA
Today we recommend that you head into Knysna itself to enjoy the oysters cultivated in this area. After lunch, you might want to take the ferry across the lagoon into the Featherbed Nature Reserve where you can enjoy some beautiful views and some gentle hiking.
Meals Included: No meals included
Accommodation: Under Milkwood Chalets in a waterfront cottage
Transport: Self Drive

DAY 10: GARDEN ROUTE – DOLPHIN TRAIL
Today you have a short drive to Tsitsikamma National Park which is the trail head for the Dolphin Trail. If you have a head for heights, then stop off at the Storm’s River Canopy Trail to experience the views from a different vantage point. You will be able to check into your quaint chalet from 14h00, enjoy the afternoon and meet at the restaurant for 19h00 to meet your guide and enjoy dinner with light trip briefing.
Meals Included: Dinner included
Accommodation: Tsitsikamma National Park accommodation
Transport: Self Drive 100km / 1 ½ hrs driving

DAY 11: GARDEN ROUTE – DOLPHIN TRAIL
Breakfast will be served from 0800 and your luggage collected from 0830. Meet your guides for 0900 departure along the Storms River Mouth board walk to the suspension bridge. The trail then follows a steep rocky path to the Lookout Point with a view towards Plettenberg Bay. You then begin your descent through indigenous forest to sea level for lunch with a stop for picnic lunch. After lunch is a steep ascent up Steikop, ending with a comfortable walk to the Misty Mountain Reserve. Arriving mid to late afternoon, there will be time to enjoy the swimming pool or spa bath, or go bass fishing in the dam before dinner.
Meals Included: All meals included
Accommodation: Misty Mountain Reserve
Transport: Guided walk of about 8 kilometres

DAY 12: GARDEN ROUTE – DOLPHIN TRAIL
Breakfast will be served from 0830 and after which you will head off down a steep path to the rock pools. The morning trail is along the coast where swimming and snorkelling in the rock pools is possible. Your morning walking culminates with a stiff climb up a cliff to the forest where you will break for lunch. After you’ve eaten, the last 3 kilometres continue through Fynbos and forest ferns. You will arive at the Fernery chalets mid-afternoon to relax and enjoy dinner. For the more energetic there is boating, cycling, bird watching, swimming pool, Jacuzzi and sauna available.
Meals Included: All meals included
Accommodation: The Fernery
Transport: Guided walk of about 8 kilometres

DAY 13: DRIVE TO PRIVATE RESERVE
Early risers can enjoy some bird watching or visit the fern export operation, before breakfast at 0830. Then you head off on a scenic 4x4 drive through the old Storms River Pass back to the trailhead to collect your vehicle. You then depart on a long drive east to the Amakhala Private Reserve, a beautifully 7,500 hectare, non-malarial private reserve neighbouring Shamwari and east of Addo National Park. There are 11 small camps and lodges on the reserve in total and a well-balanced wildlife population boasting all of the big five. Your stay here is fully inclusive of game drives and all meals. After settling into your camp, you will head out for a late afternoon game drive and sundowner.
Meals Included: Dinner included
Accommodation: Quatermains 1920 Safari Camp
Transport: Self Drive 350km / 4 hrs driving

DAY 14: ON SAFARI
This morning will be a very early start. Heading off in an open game-viewing vehicle, you will traverse over 18,000 acres weaving through 5 of the country’s 7 biomes. The wilderness of Amakhala Game Reserve preserves a complex and diverse ecosystem, providing habitat for over 60 mammal species. The Bushman’s River winds its way through the reserve providing its life source of water to the myriad of wildlife and birdlife. The majestic lion, herds of elephant, buffalo and giraffe, cheetah and endangered white and black rhino make up the big game component. There are also substantial herds of plains game species including zebra, black wildebeest, red hartebeest, Oryx and eland. After a couple of hours in the reserve return to Camp for a relaxed brunch and downtime before heading out again in the mid afternoon for a last game drive and sun-downer.
Meals Included: All meals
Accommodation: Quatermains 1920 Safari Camp
Transport: Scheduled shared game drives in open 4x4 vehicles.

DAY 15: DEPART PORT ELIZABETH
Early morning game drive and breakfast at the lodge. It is a short drive to the Port Elizabeth Airport to drop off your hire car and begin your journey back home.
Meals Included: Breakfast only
Accommodation: End of Services
Transport: Self Drive. +/- 1 hour

Accommodation


Guide price is based on recommended accommodations. Alternative accommodations and upgrades are available. Please get in touch or click on 'alternatives' below for alternatives and upgrade options.

Acorn Guest House

Cape Town & Garden Route

Our rating

7/10

Price guide

Price rating 2

- Homely Guesthouse
- Affordable
- Pool and Gardens
- Neighbourhood location

Beaumont Wine Farm

Cape Town & Garden Route

Our rating

7/10

Price guide

Price rating 2

- Authentic wine farm
- Simple comfortable cottages
- Mountain trails
- Great value

Under Milkwood

Cape Town & Garden Route

Our rating

7/10

Price guide

Price rating 3

- Very clean log cabins
- Self Catering
- Gentle lagoon beach
- Beautiful lagoon views

Quatermain's Camp

Cape Town & Garden Route

Our rating

7/10

Price guide

Price rating 2

- Classic camping safari
- Only three tents
- Access to Shamwari & Amakhala
- Owner hosts

Details

Getting there

Flying into Cape Town and out of Port Elizabeth, South African Airlines usually has the best fares from £950-£1250, this does involve stopping in Johannesburg both ways, but it makes sense, given you have to stop there anyway on the flight from Port Elizabeth. BA offers the same route, albeit usually a little more expensive but with the option of a direct flight to Cape Town on the way out (the return from PE is via Johannesburg)

Flight prices on this route are always cheaper booked in advance, particularly when flying during holidays. If you are booking anything less than a month prior to departure expect to pay through Virgin and BA tend to offer flight sales around September and October, which are worth looking out for.

There are a number of good value options via Europe and the Middle East which are worth considering if you do not mind the stop overs. These work exceptionally well for those travelling from regional airports, please ask for details.

Please let us know your preferred departure airport and we would be pleased to quote for a flight inclusive ATOL protected package.

Price includes

Rental car with comprehensive insurance and unlimited mileage, all accommodation with meals as specified, tours in Cape Town as mentioned, guided Dolphin Trail and safari activities as mentions.

When is best?

Broadly speaking, the Southern, Eastern and Western Cape of South Africa enjoys a mild Mediterranean climate in reverse order to that found in the Northern Hemisphere. Whilst the regions spring and autumn are our favourite times to visit (Sep, Oct, March, April & May), visits during their winter (June – August) are not to be ruled out.

Spring (September to October) is a lovely time to visit, temperatures are around 15 -25 Celsius, it is usually relatively dry (with only moderate chances of rain) and the Fynbos flowers are blooming. The weather is improving but not too hot and there is a good chance of seeing the spectacular whales of the Coast of Hermanus and around (the whale season runs July – October).

Summer (November to February is generally dry and hot with day time temperatures of 25-35 Celsius and plenty of sunshine (10.5hrs a day on average). The Christmas Holidays may offer the best weather but are generally best avoided as the area gets over-run with domestic tourists and prices are vastly inflated. February and March is the most popular time of the year for British traveller to visit South Africa, with the advantage of great weather without the peak crowds of Christmas / New Year.

Autumn (March - May) is also one of the best times of year to visit the region. If you can put up with cooler overnight temperatures, you’ll find the country much quieter with very pleasant warm days in the gentle autumn sunshine.

Winter (June – September) is the least favourable time of year to visit from the perspective of the weather. However the appeal of seeing the Southern Right Whales, low season rates and generally mild sunny days grants a certain logic to visiting the Cape during this time. The big drawback is the strong chance of blustery wet conditions around Cape Town and the winelands. The Garden Route and Eastern Cape is very dry during winter, but expect very cool overnight temperatures, you will need to pack some warm clothes, especially if you are going on early morning game drives.

Is it for me?

Reasonable amount fitness and interest required. For the Dolphin Trail, it is achievable by people of all ages who have maintained a good level of fitness, agility and an active lifestyle. children under the age of 12 years on special request only.

What customers are saying after travelling with Tourdust

Average Rating

based on 605 reviews

(4.93/5)

  • Everything worked perfectly! We all found our trekking experience to be the best part of our adventures in Morocco. We were particularly pleased with our guide, Hussain; he did a brilliant job. He is thoughtful, knowledgable, and sweet. He represents you well.

    MissingJacob Moffat reviewing Atlas Valleys & Villages Comfort Treks on 09 March 2017

  • Thanks for organising an excellent holiday for us. It's my first time using Tourdust and I've been really impressed and will certainly be recommending you to friends and family. You provided an excellent level of service all the way through, and the bespoke nature of the trip was fantastic whilst being really good value for money.
    Key highlights:
    - Le Kasbah de Toubkal blew us away - one not to miss!
    - The trek was amazing and my kids loved it. The camping was really fun, the food was excellent, and I'd particularly call out our guide Rashid who was fantastic show especially with my kids.
    - Riad Adore was outstanding - far exceeding my expectations - it was beautiful and we were very well looked after
    - Le Doux Tour was luxurious and a nice relaxing way to end the holiday.
    - Logistics were great and our main driver Mustapha was brilliant

    If there was one build / thing I would change, it's a very small one but some candles / lanterns to use in the evening whilst camping would have made it easier to stay outside for a bit longer.

    MissingMark Dilley reviewing Boutique Marrakech & Atlas Mountains on 07 June 2016

  • Truly another world. The sky was enormous and the summits snow covered. Blue irises, wild herbs and fruit trees flowered on the slopes. Even as I toiled up the dry river bed I gazed in admiration.

    Without exception, everyone was courteous and welcoming. Food was good ( and far too plentiful); accommodation clean. Above all-everything worked! A pick-up was promised for 9.00am. At 8.55 the doorbell rang. Impeccable.

    No praise is too high for the organisation and staff. I am definitely going back.

    MissingTerence Humphreys reviewing Classic Atlas Valleys & Villages Trek on 16 May 2016

+
See more reviews

Speak to a specialist

Our customers agree - a conversation with an expert makes for a better trip. Call us now or request a call back out of hours.

Call 855 686 7694 9am and 6pm GMT Monday to Friday

Or weekday evenings or Saturdays

Enquire

Alternative Itineraries

Our itineraries are carefully designed by our experienced travel designers based on years of experience and customer feedback. For a custom itinerary tailored to you, please enquire giving as much detail as possible on your brief.

The Classic Garden Route with a twist, using our favourite one-off owner operated B&Bs and Self Catering. Book early as availability is limited.

Tailor-made Classic 2 weeks

Families from $1,304 pp plus flights

'From Price' is the average price per person for ground arrangements for a family of four (two adults + two children under 12).

Flights are typically an additional $1,072 per person economy class from London

Three nights safari in Sabi Sabi reserve in the Greater Kruger, followed by four nights in Cape Town.

Tailor-made 8 days

Adults from $2,239 pp plus flights

'From Price' is the average per person price for ground arrangements for two people sharing.

Flights are typically an additional $1,387 per person economy class from London

Self drive exploration of Cape Town, Garden Route and Safari experience in private reserve.

Tailor-made Luxury 13 days

Adults from $2,638 pp plus flights

'From Price' is the average per person price for ground arrangements for two people sharing.

Flights are typically an additional $1,072 per person economy class from London

Families from $1,943 pp plus flights

'From Price' is the average price per person for ground arrangements for a family of four (two adults + two children under 12).

Flights are typically an additional $1,072 per person economy class from London

Decisions...

Stop searching and speak to someone who knows.

Enquire Now