Whale Tale Lookout Point along the Garden Route
Destination Activities,  DESTINATIONS,  The Garden Route

Explore the Best of the Garden Route: A Three-week itinerary

Stretching 300 kilometers (186 miles) from Mossel Bay to Storms River, the Garden Route is one of South Africa’s most famous drives. Known for its many scenic detours and pit stops along the way, the real challenge is deciding where to go and how long to spend on the route. While many start from Cape Town and kick off the route in Mossel Bay, I began mine from Storms River in the Eastern Cape. This post will therefore guide you through a three-week Garden Route itinerary, starting at Storms River and ending in Mossel Bay.

Day 1-6: Explore the Tsitsikamma region of the Garden Route

Tsitsikamma National Park is a protected area located on the southern coast of South Africa. It is part of the larger Garden Route National Park and covers an 80 kilometre (50 mile) long stretch of coastline, between Storms River Mouth and Natures Valley. Tsitsikamma’s combination of striking coastline, indigenous forests and winding rivers provide plenty opportunities for hikingwater sportsadrenaline-pumping activitiesbeach days and scenic views

Day 1: Storms River Village, a small Garden Route Town filled with beauty

storms river village along the Garden Route
Storms River Village

Nestled at the base of the Tsitsikamma mountains and surrounded by forests, Storms River Village is a small town located near Tsitsikamma National Park. This makes it an excellent starting point for your Garden Route adventure. Beyond its convenient location, though, the village itself also offers plenty of things to do. Because the village is pretty small, you can stroll along the tree-lined streets or go on short hikes directly from the village center – all in a single day! Be sure to visit Tsitrus Cafe at the center of the village. We loved the ambiance here, plus the food and coffee was delicious!

Be cautious not to mix up Storms River Village and Storms River (often just referred to as Storms River Mouth) – they’re often confused due to their proximity. The Storms River is a watercourse that flows through the Tsitsikamma National Park, eventually reaching the Indian Ocean at a point known as Storms River Mouth. The Storms River Mouth marks the end of the famous Otter Trail, a renowned hiking trail in the Tsitsikamma region. There are four more beautiful hiking trails to explore near the Storms River Mouth, too, including the iconic Mouth Trail to the ever-popular Suspension Bridge.

Suggested time to spend at Storms River Village: 1 full day

Where to stay in Storms River Village

While a quick google search will bring up plenty of options, we really loved our stay at Beautiful Garden Cottage. It sits in a quiet corner of the village and sleeps 6 people comfortably.

READ MORE >>> Best thing to do at Storms River Village

Day 2: Storms River Mouth hiking trails and the Big Tree

Storms River Mouth

Storms River Mouth along the Garden Route
Storms River Mouth

From Storms River Village, it is only a 20 minute (15km) drive to reach Storms River Mouth.

The centerpiece of Tsitsikamma is the Storms River Mouth, where the Storms river meets the powerful Indian Ocean. This region is primarily renowned for three key attractions: the Suspension Bridge, the hiking trails, and the Kayak & Lilo Adventure up the Storms River Gorge. This is where you will also find the Storms River Mouth Rest Camp, an ideal base for exploring the region’s attractions.

Because Storms River Mouth is part of the National Park, you will need to pay a daily conservation fee to enter the region. The fee is payable when entering the Tsitsikamma section of The Garden Route National Park. For current tariffs, visit SANPARK’S OFFICIAL PAGE. Once you have paid the entrance fee, there is no additional cost for any of the hiking trails.

Helpful Tip #1: If you only have one full day at Storms River Mouth, make the most of it by arriving as early as possible in the morning. The gate opens at 05:30 during Jan-March, 06:00 during Apr-August and 05:30 during Oct-Dec. You can also contact the park on +27 42 281 1607.

Helpful Tip #2: The park’s small shop has limited supplies, and as of 2023, there is only one restaurant at Storms River Mouth once you pass through the entrance gates. So, it’s a good idea to pack plenty of snacks and water if you’re spending a whole day exploring the trails.

Suggested time to spend at Storms River Mouth: 1 full day

READ MORE >>> Storms River Mouth Hiking Trails: Your Ultimate Guide

The Big Tree

The Big Tree, an iconic attraction along the Garden Route

Standing guard over the treetop canopy in the heart of the Tsitsikamma forest is the Big Tree. This 800 year old Yellowwood is a true giant, standing at a staggering height of 36.6 meters (120 feet) with a girth of 8.2 meters (27 feet) at its widest point.

The Big Tree lies just off the N2 highway, about 15km from Storms River Mouth or 2km from Storms River Village. The walk to the tree from the parking lot takes about 10 minutes. 

Helpful Tip #3: The conservation fee for the Tsitsikamma section of the Garden Route National Park includes both the Storms River Mouth region and The Big Tree, provided you visit both within the same day.

Suggested time to spend at the Big Tree: 1-2 hours. However, there are longer trails starting at the Big Tree. So, if you explore those trails also, then you will obviously need more time.

READ MORE >>> The Big Tree, Tsitsikamma: All you need to know

Day 3: Tsitsikamma, the gateway to adventure and adrenaline in the Garden Route

Bloukrans Bungy along the Garden Route
Bloukrans Bridge

For Day 3, spend time just having fun. With so many activities to choose from, you can pick your favorite(s) and spend the day enjoying adrenaline packed adventures. Whether you’re leaping off the world’s highest commercial bungy bridge, soaring through the treetops, or exploring the Storms River gorge by kayak, Tsitsikamma provides a playground for thrill-seekers.

Where to stay in Tsitsikamma

Amperda Log Cabins are a great choice, especially for the budget conscious traveller. The cabins are situated on a quiet farm, close to the N2 highway and only 24km (a 25 minute drive) from Storms River Mouth and 10km (a 10 minute drive) from the Big Tree.

Day 4: Natures Valley, a secret corner of the Garden Route

Including Nature’s Valley in your Garden Route trip is a no-brainer for beach and nature lovers. Natures Valley is located about a 40 minute drive (~41kms) from Storms River. It’s a charming seaside village home to around 50 houses, mostly occupied by permanent residents. What truly sets Nature’s Valley apart, though, is its untouched, tranquil atmosphere. Unlike some of the more touristy spots along the Garden Route, Nature’s Valley has remained relatively undeveloped, preserving its natural beauty. Getting to Nature’s Valley also involves navigating a winding 10-kilometer road with hairpin bends. This remote and tranquil setting might be why it’s still one of South Africa’s lesser-known treasures.

Natures Valley Beach

Natures Valley beach
Natures Valley Beach

A trip to Natures Valley wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the beach. Nature’s Valley boasts one of South Africa’s most unspoiled and breathtaking beaches. The warm water is perfect for swimming, although be careful of some rocky parts. The long stretch of soft sand is also ideal for leisurely walks and you can stroll all the way to the lagoon and back. The easiest way to access the beach is from the Blue Rocks Cafe. Although Blue Rocks is the only restaurant you will find in Natures Valley, the food is delicious. It’s a great spot to grab a bit before or after a day at the beach.

Suggested time to spend at Natures Valley Beach: This is really up to you. The beach is exceptionally beautiful, though, so if you love beaches, I recommend setting aside a whole day to enjoy Nature’s Valley beach during your Garden Route trip.

Day 5: Hiking at Natures Valley

Nature’s Valley has beautiful trails that go from the coast through the forest, giving you fantastic views of lush forests, rugged cliffs, and untouched coastline. One favorite is the Otter Trail – a challenging multi-day hike ending in Nature’s Valley. However, if you only have one day try the Salt River Mouth Hike or Pig’s Head Trail for shorter yet wonderful hikes.

Suggested time to spend at Natures Valley Hiking Trails: 1 full day

A great way to round off your day of hiking is a visit to Forest Nature Spa. This boutique, Bali-inspired spa is tucked away in a calm and quiet forest setting, only a 25 minute drive (17km) from Natures Valley.

Day 6: Natures Way Farm Stall

Natures Way Farm Stall
Natures Way Farm Stall

Nature’s Way Farm Stall, situated conveniently off the N2 in Nature’s Valley, is more than just a typical farm stall. Offering a diverse experience, it includes a plant nursery, a restaurant, a souvenir and boutique clothing shop, and accommodations. Spending a day at the Farm Stall is a perfect end to your time in Nature’s Valley.

Suggested time to spend at Natures Way Farm Stall: It all depends on your schedule. If you choose to stay at Natures Way Farm Stay Accommodation, it’s a peaceful place for a whole day. We loved just sitting on our porch, watching farm life, and enjoying delicious food from the farm stall.

Where to stay in Natures Valley

Nature’s Valley Rest Camp is the main (and closest) accommodation option to the beach and hiking trails. The rest camp has a range of self-catering accommodations, including chalets and camping facilities. Booking in advance is highly recommended, especially during peak tourist seasons. For a broader range of accommodation options in the village, consider checking Google Maps and booking directly with the property. Many options may not be available on major booking websites.

If you can’t find what you need in Natures Valley, check out the Crags region. There are more accommodation options there. My personal recommendation, though, is Natures Way Farm Stay. It’s only a 15-minute drive from the beach and trails, but its a really peaceful and beautiful place. The accommodation is set on a family-run dairy farm, surrounded by animals, gardens and pastures, and incredible views of the Tsitsikamma mountains.

Day 7-9: Discover Plettenberg Bay, the Garden Route’s Coastal Gem

From Natures Valley to Plettenberg Bay, it’s only a 30 minute (or 34km) drive. Plettenberg Bay (or Plett, as it is affectionately called) is a town along the Garden Route that is known for its beautiful beaches and fun water activities. Plus, the town’s artsy and chill vibe makes it a must-see stop for your road trip! Plett is also an excellent base to explore other nearby attractions.

Day 7: Visit an animal sanctuary

Near Plettenberg Bay, there are awesome places working hard to protect South Africa’s special animals. Include Monkeyland, Jukani Wildlife Sanctuary, Birds of Eden, and the Elephant Sanctuary in your Plettenberg Bay plan.

Birds of Eden is the World’s largest free-flight bird aviary. This vast enclosure is home to over 3,500 birds representing more than 220 species. A well-maintained boardwalk winds through the forest, as the birds move and fly freely around you.

Birds of Eden near Plettenberg Bay along the Garden Route

Suggested time to spend at Birds of Eden: You can spend as much time as you want here. However, most people spend about 2 or 3 hours walking around.

READ MORE >>> Birds of Eden – Exploring a feathered paradise

Considered as the world’s first free roaming multi-species primate sanctuary (there are in fact over 550 primates here), Monkeyland is a multi-species primate haven spanning 12 hectares of indigenous forest. The guided walks through Monkeyland let you get up close to these funny animals!

Monkeyland near Plettenberg Bay along the Garden Route

Suggested time to spend at Monkeyland: While the guided tours are 1 hour, I suggest allocating approximately 2 hours for your visit. This way, you’ll have extra time to explore the shop and perhaps enjoy a snack or beverage at the cafe.

READ MORE >>> Monkeyland: Everything you need to know

Helpful Tip: You can purchase individual tickets for each sanctuary at R380 (adult) and R190 (Child under 12 years of age). However, there is also a combo ticket (any 2 sanctuaries) for R610 per adult and R305 per child. The triptec ticket (all 3 sanctuaries) is R760 per adult and R380 per child. Rates are for 1 Jan 2024 – 31 December 2024.

Be sure to also pop into Peppermill Cafe, which is just a 3 minute drive from the sanctuaries. They serve great food and light meals, so it’s a nice little stop before continuing your Garden Route Adventure.

Day 8: Hiking at Robberg Nature Reserve

Robberg Nature Reserve

Plan to spend a whole day exploring Robberg Nature Reserve – it’s totally worth it! This special place is not only a World Heritage Site and National Monument, but it’s also full of history, with old rocks and Stone Age artifacts. There are three hiking trails to pick from, ranging from 2km to 9km, so you can enjoy the beauty at your own pace.

Suggested time to spend at Robberg Nature Reserve. It all depends on the trail. However, we went slowly and spent about 3.5 hours to cover the 7km route.

READ MORE >>> Robberg Nature Reserve Hike: Plettenberg’s Best Kept Secret

Day 9: Visit Whale Tale lookout point and the surrounding farm stalls

Whale Tale lookout point

Whale Tale lookout point in Plettenberg Bay

For amazing ocean views and the opportunity to see dolphins and whales (when they’re around), check out Whale Tail Lookout Point. You’ll find benches where you can relax, watch the waves, spot surfers, or have a picnic. While it’s beautiful at any time, catching the sunset there is an extra special experience.

Farm Stalls near Plettenberg Bay

Shabby Fufu Farm Stall near Plettenberg Bay

Near Plettenberg Bay and along the N2 between Knysna and Keurbooms, there are lots of quaint and lovely farm stalls to check out. Whether you want art, home decor, fancy clothes, or local produce and food, the farm stalls have it all. My top picks for stalls near (or in) Plett are Shabby fufu, Thyme & Again and the Heath & Ledger Complex.

To discover more farm stalls along the Garden Route, click here.

Where to stay in Plettenberg Bay

With so many great options, it’s hard to narrow it down. Beautiful Bell Rock is a fantastic choice, though! The property features a swimming pool, quiet street views and is 2.4 km from Hobie Beach and 4.2 km from Robberg Nature Reserve.

Day 10: Knysna, an up-scale Garden Route destination

Don’t miss Knysna on your Garden Route journey! It’s a gem with stunning places like the Knysna Lagoon and the iconic Knysna Heads. There’s a lot to do here from hiking to water activities, excellent restaurants and even an elephant park. However, if you’re just passing through the town, here are 3 quick and easy places to visit on your drive.

The Knysna heads

Knysna heads

Start your morning with a visit to the Knysna Heads. Situated approximately 300 meters apart, the Knysna Heads are the headlands of two peninsulas that enclose and shape the Knysna River Estuary. The heads were shaped over millions of years, starting from the breakup of the ancient supercontinent Gondwana during the Jurassic period 180 million years ago. The Eastern Head features residences, fynbos-covered farmland, and the Pezula Championship Golf Course along its seaward-facing slopes. On the other hand, the Western Head, distinguished by its arch-shaped cliff, is home to one of Knysna’s beloved attractions: the Featherbed Nature Reserve. To really soak in the stunning views, just take a drive to the top of the Eastern Head. From there, you’ll get a breathtaking look at the Knysna Lagoon and the expansive Indian Ocean.

Knysna Gin Distillery

Gin Distillery in Knysna

The Distillery is gaining popularity as a favorite Friday night gin and cocktail bar in Knysna! Apart from their acclaimed Knysna Gin, they also craft small-batch seasonal variations such as honey, mulberry, blueberry, wild plum, and pink plum gin. Inside, there’s a bunch of board games scattered around for entertainment. The garden is another lovely spot to enjoy a relaxed afternoon or evening.

Margarents Viewpoint

Margarents Viewpoint, Knysna

Exit the N2 and drive towards Brenton on Sea. Once you’re higher up, look for Margaret’s Viewpoint on the left with a parking area. Stop there to enjoy fantastic views of Knysna, its wide estuary, and the Outeniqua Mountains in the distance.

Day 11: Sedgefield, a sleepy Garden Route town

It takes only 15 minutes (or ~21km) to drive from Knysna to Sedgefield. Sedgefield is known for its laid-back vibe, earning it the title of “Slow Town.” Saturdays are lively, though, especially at the Wild Oats Community Farmers’ Market. Besides the beautiful Myoli Beach, there are other charming spots in Sedgefield for you to enjoy in just one day.

Eat and shop at the Mosaic Village and Outdoor Market

With all this exploring on Day 9, you have probably worked up a good appetite by now. Head on over to Sedgefield’s Mosaic Village and Outdoor market. The Table Bistro, Deli and Craft Bar has a huge range of products such as olive oils, artisanal mustards, pastas, pâtés, cheeses, vinaigrettes, olives, home-baked packaged meals and more. Their sweet treats are also out of this world, from homemade double thick ice-cream, organic fruit juices, honey and a selection of jams. Eye-catching animal figures created from recycled metals line the lawns at the entrance. Furthermore, the quirky little octopus garden features (well, you guessed it!) a giant and colorful mosaic octopus and a whale sculpture. The Scarab Art and Craft village has authentic, handmade products from clothing to a paper and craft center. Additionally, there’s also a playground area for the kids. For the adults, the Sedgefield Craft Brewery is a favorite!

Every Saturday morning throughout the year (from 7:30 – 12 noon summer, 08:00 – 12 noon winter), the Wild Oats Market is open to visitors. The market features locally-produced foods including free-range meats, chicken, lamb, dairy and cheese. They also serve a diverse selection of breakfast options cooked right off the grill.

Discover the rock pools of Gericke’s Point

Gericke's Point along the Garden Route

If you fancy a short, relaxing beach walk to explore rock pools, add Gericke’s Point near Sedgefield to your Garden Route itinerary. To get to Gericke’s Point, it’s about a 2km stroll along Swartvlei beach. While smaller compared to the expansive beach around it, this rocky outcrop is a treasure trove of adventure and natural beauty. You can easily climb to the top for a great view, even without shoes. Just be careful because some parts might be a bit slippery. From up high, you might see whales or dolphins. Down at the bottom of Gericke’s Point, there are awesome rock pools full of animals, corals, and shells. Bring your snorkel to explore them. The water is warm, so it’s nice to swim, especially on a hot day and even for kids. However, watch out for high tide. Once the tide comes in, these rock pools disappear under the water.

Bask in Tranquility at the Sedgefield Lagoon

Sedgefield Lagoon along the Garden Route

Sedgefield boasts a stunning beach that links up with the lagoon. The lagoon is a beautiful place for swimming, fishing and just relaxing in the quiet ambiance. While you could spend a whole day at this beautiful spot, it’s also perfect for a quick visit and a short stroll if you’re in a hurry.

Wilderness

As you continue making your way from Sedgefield to George, two other awesome places to pop in at if you have time are Victoria Bay and Timberlake Village.

Timberlake Village along the Garden Route

Timberlake Village started in 2006 to support small local businesses in a relaxed outdoor setting. They’ve got four places to eat, like the Fig Tree Bakehouse with yummy bread and the Naughty Monkey Cafe with tasty coffee and cakes. You can also do some shopping here for local stuff such as leather and mohair products. There’s even a great little wine shop and art galleries. Spend 1-3 hours checking out the shops and grabbing a quick bite to eat.

Victoria Bay

Victoria Bay, or “Vic Bay,” is a small bay on the Garden Route, just 3km off the N2 National Road between George and Wilderness. It’s a cozy cove surrounded by cliffs, with cottages by the water. A popular surf beach, it is also a nice little spot to stop if you want pretty beach views and a quick walk.

Day 12-14: George, a city nestled in the mountains along the Garden Route

Surrounded by the beautiful Outeniqua Mountains and forest, George is a town that should definitely be on your Garden Route itinerary. From gorgeous forest hikes, to scenic rail tours and the World’s largest strawberry structure, George is a place with lots to see and do! George is also considered a gateway to the Klein Karoo, a semi-arid region known for its unique landscapes, wildlife, and cultural experiences.

Day 12: The Outeniqua Power Van and Transport Museum

Outeniqua Power Van

Outeniqua Power Van

Starting and ending at the Outeniqua Transport Museum, the Outeniqua Power Van is a journey like no other. The 2 hour scenic motorized rail car experience takes you deep into the Outeniqua mountains, with spectacular views of the mountains, valley and the town of George.

READ MORE >>> The Outeniqua Power Van: A rail adventure into the mountains

Outeniqua Transport Museum

Outeniqua Transport Museum

After your trip, be sure to check out the Outeniqua Transport Museum. The museum displays a variety of old steam trains, locomotives, carriages, and other railway-related artifacts. It’s an interesting place to see the historical importance of transportation, particularly the role of railways in the development of George and the surrounding regions.

Day 13: Redberry Farm

redberry farm in the city of George along the Garden Route

Add Redberry Farm to your road trip for a unique experience along the Garden Route. This family-friendly farm is surrounded by the Outeniqua Mountains, so it’s very picturesque. The farm also has many activities such as strawberry picking, go-karts, a maze, and pony rides. One highlight is the Giant Strawberry, the world’s largest strawberry structure, where you can climb and enjoy great views. There’s also a range of restaurants to choose from, wine and craft beer tastings, and a Handcrafted Ice-cream store. What’s more, the Farm Stall sells freshly picked strawberries, kiwi products, and unique handcrafted gifts, making Redberry Farm a multifaceted destination for fun and flavors.

READ MORE >>> Redberry Farm, George: Things to do at this unique destination

Day 14: Explore the forest trails

George, being surrounded by the mountains and forests, means there are plenty of hiking trails to explore. In fact, many of the trails take you through the forested mountains to beautiful dams and lookout points. As such, it’s worth spending a good part of a day on the trails, enjoying the beautiful views and clean air.

Day 15-17: Ostriches, history and nature in Oudtshoorn

Oudtshoorn, found in the Klein Karoo region of South Africa, is a special place with its own unique attractions. Famous for being the “Ostrich Capital of the World,” it’s a great spot to visit ostrich farms and see these awesome birds up close. The town has lovely old buildings from the Victorian era, telling the story of Oudtshoorn’s history during the time when ostrich feathers were a big deal. Surrounding Oudtshoorn are also stunning landscapes and sites, like the Swartberg Mountains and the Cango Caves.

Day 15: Meiringspoort (via De Rust)

Meiringspoort

Plan a day trip from Oudtshoorn to Meiringspoort, a stunning mountain pass in the Swartberg Mountains. Before tackling the winding roads, though, stop by the quaint town of De Rust. Just a 25-minute drive from Oudtshoorn, De Rust is known as the gateway between the Klein Karoo and the Groot Karoo. It’s a tiny little town that you can walk up and down in about 30 minutes. Then, as you continue past De Rust, you’ll wind through the mountains, with amazing views of cliffs, rocks, and the Groot River. About halfway along, you’ll then find the Meiringspoort Waterfall, tucked away in a deep ravine. The waterfall is beautiful, with a deep rock pool at the bottom you can have a quick swim in.

Day 16: The Cango Caves

Cango Caves

Don’t miss the Cango Caves – it’s like stepping into an underground wonderland filled with incredible rock formations. The Cango caves are South Africa’s oldest tourist attraction and one of Outshoorns most popular. A visit to the Cango Caves is more than just pretty rocks and chambers, though. Through guided tours, you’ll explore the cave and learn about how they formed millions of years ago. There’s an easy, fun walking tour that is suitable for families. However, if you’re feeling adventurous, there is the ‘adventure tour’ that takes you even deeper into the caves through narrow openings and tiny tunnels.

Day 17: Explore Oudtshoorn Town

Oudtshoorn, a town along the Garden Route

Oudtshoorn is filled with charming Victorian-style buildings that tell the story of its history. You’ll find quaint shops, art galleries, and cozy cafes along the streets, especially on the main square, Baron van Reede Street. This central area is where locals gather for markets and events, giving you a taste of the town’s vibrant community. Don’t miss landmarks like the C.P. Nel Museum, sharing Oudtshoorn’s history, and the Dutch Reformed Church, a notable part of the town’s skyline. The town center is a great starting point for exploring Oudtshoorn and experiencing its warm and welcoming atmosphere.

Where to stay in Oudtshoorn

While a quick google search will bring up plenty of options, we really loved our stay at De Oude Meul Country Lodge. It lies approximately halfway between Oudtshoorn’s center and the Cango Caves. During the ostrich season, De Oude Meul transforms into a bustling working ostrich farm. Among its offerings are a restaurant, two pools, complimentary Wi-Fi, opportunities for game hunting, hiking routes, 4×4 trails, a children’s play park, fishing, a venue for weddings and conferences and lots of cute little animals like bunnies, ponies and deer.

Day 18-21: Mossel Bay, a coastal paradise along the Garden Route

The official end of the Garden Route is Mossel Bay. The town is a perfect mix of relaxation, history, and adventure along the Garden Route. You can chill at the beautiful Santos Beach or try exciting things like whale watching and shark cage diving. The town is full of historical spots also, like the Bartolomeu Dias Museum Complex and the Post Office Tree. With a plethora of attractions and activities, Mossel Bay is a wonderful end to your Garden Route trip.

Day 18: Mossel Bay Harbor and Sunset Cruise

The Harbor area

Mossel Bay harbor

Mossel Bay Harbor is not just a historic site but a bustling hub for fishing and tourism, where the local fishing industry thrives. From the harbor area, you can take boat trips, go fishing, and enjoy excellent seafood at waterfront restaurants. In fact, there are many fantastic restaurants near the harbor. Kaai for Braai is a favorite with both locals and travellers. It’s a casual restaurant where you can kick back with your feet in the sand and enjoy tasty South African meat dishes around a big, central fireplace.

Bartholomew Diaz Museum Complex and Post Office Tree

Bartholomew Diaz Museum

Near the Harbor is the Bartholomew Dias Museum Complex. The Museum Complex is a great place to wander and learn more about Mossel Bay’s maritime history. The complex includes the Maritime Museum, the Shell Museum, and the Granary. A highlight for most is the replica of the Caravel, the ship used by Diaz in 1488. Another iconic site at the Bartholomeu Dias Museum Complex is ‘The Post Office Tree’, an ancient Milkwood tree that was a historic mail spot for sailors in the 16th century.

Santos Beach

Santos Beach

After the museum, walk on over to Santos Beach. Santos boasts beautiful ocean views and holds a Blue-Flag status for cleanliness and safety. The water is perfect for swimming (20-22⁰C in summer, 13-14⁰C in winter). It’s a hub for water activities like paddle-skiing, surfing, boating, diving, and fishing. If you’re hungry, Santos Beach is near good restaurants. Its central location also makes it easy to reach other nearby attractions in Mossel Bay.

Sunset Cruise to Seal Island

Romonza Sunset Cruise

Hop on the Romonza boat for an exciting trip to Seal Island. The journey takes you through the waters to this famous rocky spot, home to lots of playful seals. Watch as they dive and relax on the rocks, all while learning cool facts from knowledgeable guides on board. If you choose a sunset trip, you will be wowed by the most spectacular sunset views, also. The trip is really something special and a must-do when in Mossel Bay.

READ MORE >>> Romanza Boat Trip: Sailing into the sunset in Mossel Bay

Day 19: St Blaize Hiking Trail

St Blaize hiking trail Mossel Bay

The Cape St Blaize Hiking Trail is a great walk with beautiful views. Starting at the Cape St Blaize Lighthouse, the trail follows the cliffs, giving you amazing sights of the Indian Ocean. Although the long walk can be challenging in the heat, it is mostly flat, so it is manageable for all levels. The trail is about 13 kilometers, and ends at Dana Bay, where you can relax on peaceful beaches and grab a refreshing drink at the Pinnacle Point Bar & Lounge. Along the way, you’ll see local plants, birds, and also pass through the newly built Iconic Tunnel Mosaic Project and the Pinnacle Point Estate and Golf Course.

READ MORE >>> St. Blaize hiking trail Mossel Bay: Everything you need to know

Day 20 : Point Road

Point Road Mossel Bay

Point Road in Mossel Bay is a lovely seafront promenade. It’s a safe and enjoyable place for a walk, surrounded by plenty of restaurants. Don’t forget to take a picture at the iconic Mossel Bay sign to remember your visit! Dolfinos, a great restaurant next to the tidal pool on Point Road, is right on the beach and offers awesome sea views.

Mini golf

Putt Putt Mossel Bay

The Putt-Putt course along Point Road is so much fun! It’s perfect for all skill levels, and the ocean views are unbeatable. There’s also a cute little café that sells snacks and drinks. It’s a fantastic way to spend a morning or afternoon in Mossel Bay.

Day 21: Mossel Bay Town

Mossel Bay town

There’s plenty to see and do in the historical town center of Mossel Bay. Explore the town by walking around to appreciate its historic buildings and architecture. Visit local shops and markets like the Goods Shed for unique souvenirs and handmade items. You’ll find lots of restaurants and cafes in the town center, offering both local and international dishes. Also, check out the other interesting places to see, listed below.

Krotoa Coffee

Krotoa Coffee Mossel Bay

Krotoa is well known as the ‘town’s best coffee’ spot. Located in a charming old building, the cafe is cozy and warm inside. The staff is really friendly, and their food and coffee are excellent. It’s the perfect spot to grab your morning coffee before heading out for the day.

St Blaize Gin Distillery

St Blaize Gin Distillery Mossel Bay

If you’re into Gin or just curious about the process, make sure to visit Mossel Bay’s gin distillery. Cape Saint Blaize Gin Distillery is well-known for creating fantastic small-batch gins inspired by the area’s natural beauty. The Gin Masterclass is a hands-on experience where you can craft your own Cape Saint Blaize Gin. But it’s not just about making gin – the distillery also offers various tasting experiences like Gin Liqueur Tasting and Sushi with Gin. For a unique treat, head to the Blue Oyster Cocktail Bar for a Gin and Chocolate Pairing, a surprisingly delicious combination! Then, if you’re in the mood for a more substantial meal, the nearby Café Gannet restaurant specializes in fresh seafood, which is an excellent ocean-to-table dining experience.

READ MORE >>> Cape St Blaize Gin and chocolate pairing delight


To sum it up, the Garden Route is fantastic, and the best part is, you don’t have to follow this three-week itinerary exactly. Think of it as a guide. No matter where you decide to stop or explore, you’re bound to love it. Each spot along the way has its unique charm, making every detour a fun adventure. So, go at your own pace, discover hidden gems, and enjoy the freedom of creating your own unforgettable Garden Route trip.

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