GARDEN ROUTE - 5 DAY

DAY 1 - Travel through WORCESTER, encircled by majestic mountains, via the scenic MONTAGUE route, (an area of magnificent landscapes and towering cliffs, crystal clear streams and an abundance of indigenous flora), to the little Karoo town of OUDSTHOORN. Lunch at, and a visit to an Ostrich Show farm, where you can ride an Ostrich! Afternoon visit to Cheetahland/Crocodile Ranch. Oudtshoorn is known as "The Feather Capital of the World" because of the flourishing ostrich industry. Palatial homes known as "Feather palaces" sprang up during the boom years, are a distinctive feature of the town. Overnight Oudtshoorn.

DAY 2 - Morning visit to the Cango Caves, the underground fairyland of the little Karoo with stalactites and stalagmites formed about 100 million years ago in crystaline limestone. Travel over the Outenique Pass through GEORGE and the WILDERNESS Lake district to KNYSNA, nestling on the banks of a shimmering lagoon in the heart of the Garden Route. Beaches, lakes, mountains and rivers provide endless opportunity for leisure and outdoor activities. Within the town, art & craft shops, flea-markets and cosy cafe's beckon with small-town charm and hospitality. Enjoy the view from the Lookout point high above the Knysna heads, which are at the entrance of the Knysna lagoon, visit the Holy Trinity Church in Belvidere - built by Thomas Henry Duthie is a beautiful example (in miniature) of the Norman style of the 11th and 12th centuries and picturesque Brenton-on-Sea offers long golden beaches with crystal clear water, exceptional fishing and great sailing. Limited property makes this a prime area and is much sought after. Overnight Knysna.

DAY 3 - Ferry ride to the Featherbed Nature Reserve, which is a private nature reserve in a pristine area accessible only by ferry. A 4-hour excursion onto the famous Western Head of Knysna lagoon to experience the untouched beauty of the flora and fauna preserved in a nature reserve. The excursion includes a return ferry trip across the blue waters of the Knysna Estuary. A 4x4 trailer takes you to the top for spectacular views, followed by a 2,2km guided walk. See the rare Blue Duiker, Knysna loeries and the endangered Knysna seahorses. Lunch included. Overnight Knysna.

Day 4 - Travel through PLETTENBERG BAY, SA's premier holiday destination, en route visit the Knysna Elephant Park. These elephants were saved from culling. With the help of the resident African elephants and well-informed guides- you will learn about the sad and mystical story of the Knysna Elephants – the world’s Southern most elephants. The park offers a rare and exciting opportunity to get close to these gentle giants, who live in a controlled, free range environment in the heart of the famous Garden Route in South Africa. We then travel on to the TSITSIKAMMA RESERVE, which are the last of the areas' indigenous forests, where you will see the Big Tree, which is a giant ancient Yellowwood. We’ll stop for Lunch (not included) at STORMSRIVER MOUTH. The Tsitsikamma National Park is an 80 kilometre long coastal strip between Nature's Valley and the mouth of the Storms River. In the park the visitor finds an almost untouched natural landscape. After lunch, take a walk to the River mouth through the forest. Overnight Knysna.

Day 5 - We travel back to CAPE TOWN, stopping in MOSSEL BAY to visit the Museums and the first Post office in SA, which is a Milkwood tree. In 1488 Batholomeu Diaz landed here, after being blown around the Cape of Good Hope. We travel inland to SWELLENDAM for Lunch (Swellendam lies in the Overberg region halfway between Cape Town and the Garden Route: an ideal and charming stop-over. The town is surrounded by fertile, softly undulating farmland with the idyllic Breede River meandering through. In the background protectively towers the Langeberg Range). Thereafter we return to Cape Town through the apple districts of ELGIN and GRABOUW, over Sir Lowry’s Pass.
email queries to: jenn@netactive.co.za
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