Southern South Africa and the Garden Route
15-Day Self-Drive Tour, Accommodated
From: Cape Town
To: Cape Town
Number of Participants: Individual
Tour Price: from 11,900 ZAR pp sharing
Single Supplement: from 6,700 ZAR
This 15-day self-drive tour is ideal for those wanting to get to know the malaria-free southern part of South Africa. Enough time has been allocated to explore Cape Town, the winelands, the beautiful Garden Route, Tsitsikamma National Park and Addo Elephant Park. The diversity and richness of the southern part of South Africa makes this journey unforgettable.
Day 1-7; South Africa
- Cape Town: Table Mountain, Lion’s Head, V&A Waterfront, Blouberg, Simon´s Town, Cape of Good Hope, Robben Island, Camps Bay, Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden
- Hermanus: Whale watching (seasonal), forest and costal walks, Grotto beach
- Wilderness: Pristine beaches, forest walks
- Knysna: Lagoon, the Heads, oystersli>
- Mossel Bay: Dias Maritime Museum, Santos Beach
Day 8-11; South Africa
- Plettenberg Bay: Beaches, whale and dolphin watching
- Nature´s Valley: Nature walks, hiking, Salt River Mouth, beach
- Tsitsikamma National Park: Hiking, Otter Trail, bungee jumping (optional), sundowners
- Addo Elephant National Park: Game drives
Day 12-14;South Africa
- Scenic Route 62: Langkloof and Karoo towns, mountainous landscapes, wine tasting
- Oudtshoorn: Cango Caves, ostriches, meerkat encounters
- Stellenbosch: Winelands, wine tasting, historical buildings
Day 15; South Africa
- Cape Town: V&A Waterfront, museums, Sea Point promenade, shopping
We have visited all the below mentioned lodges, guesthouses and camps and can therefore recommend them first hand. In order not to only “tick off” all the points of interest but to actually learn more about the places, the country and its people, we do not book our clients into big and anonymous lodges, hotels and resorts. Instead of the huge in personal tourism hotels we offer you owner-managed guesthouses and private lodges where you have a better chance of getting to know more about your destination while interacting with the staff and owners.
Day 1 Cape Town, South Africa
Distance approx. 40 km; driving time approx. 1h
After your arrival at Cape Town International Airport you pick up your rental car and drive to Cactusberry Lodge in a suburb in Cape Town’s city centre. You can then relax, explore the city on foot or take a stroll on the beaches of Clifton and Camps Bay for a sundowner. You will overnight at the Cactusberry Lodge.
Day 2-3 Cape Town, South Africa
Distance depends on choice of route
Cape Town is one of the most beautiful cities in the world and it is often compared to San Francisco. Historical architecture, museums, Table Mountain and its forested slopes, the beautiful beaches and fresh air enchants adventure seekers and cultural buffs. You have two days to explore Table Mountain, walk up Lion’s Head, visit Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden, the beaches of Blouberg or Camps Bay, Cape Point, Simon’s Town, Robben Island or just sit in a coffee shop or park and watch the locals. You will spend two more nights at the Cactusberry Lodge.
Day 4-5 Cape Town, South Africa - Hermanus, South Africa
Distance day 4 approx. 150 km; driving time approx. 2-3h
Hermanus is South Africa’s whale hotspot between June and November when the southern right whales visit the shores. Walk along the Cliff Path and look for the fountains of spray emitted from whales as they surface to breathe. Outside the whale season, the region offers spectacular walks along the coast and into the nearby forests. You will spend two nights at the FrancolinHof Guest House with beautiful views over Walker Bay.
Day 6-7 Hermanus, South Africa - Wilderness, South Africa
Distance day 6 approx. 350 km; driving time approx. 4h
You continue your journey along the N2 via Mossel Bay and George and travel to Wilderness, a quaint little town between the ocean and a lagoon. The beach is safe and perfect for long walks and swims. Explore the Wilderness National Park – go rowing, hiking, swimming or birdwatching or relax with a massage at a local salon. You will stay for two nights at Mes Amis with views over the ocean from your bed…
Day 8-9 Wilderness, South Africa - Tsitsikamma National Park, South Africa
Distance day 8 approx. 150 km; driving time approx. 2h
Today you will drive through Knysna, a historical town associated with the wooden and oyster industry. Stop for lunch here or at a farm stall along the way. After Plettenberg Bay you drive along the picturesque R102 to the small village of Nature’s Valley. This village lies on the shore of the Indian Ocean and is flanked by a beautiful lagoon and forested region which offers numerous walks. The sandy beach is an excellent swim spot. From here you proceed to the Tsitsikamma National Park where you will stay for two nights at the Storms River Mouth Rest Camp, a paradise for bird enthusiasts and lovers of dramatic coastlines. In the evening you can go for sundowners at a viewing point or on the rocks below your chalet.
Breakfast (day 8)
Breakfast, lunch and dinner are available at the restaurant in the rest camp. If you prefer self-catering, this option is also available to you. The chalets have cooking and barbecue facilities.
Day 10-11 Tsitsikamma National Park, South Africa - Addo Elephant National Park, South Africa
Distance day 10 approx. 250 km; driving time approx. 3-4h
Today you will continue east to the Addo Elephant National Park. You are almost guaranteed to see elephants, but might also by lucky to spot the other four of the ‘Big Five – lion, leopard, rhino and buffalo. Consider joining a night drive or go horse riding (both optional). There is a bird hide and waterhole which is illuminated at night. You will overnight in chalets at the rest camp in the park.
Breakfast, lunch and dinner are available at the restaurant in the rest camp. If you prefer self-catering, this option is also available to you.
Day 12 Addo Elephant National Park, South Africa - Oudtshoorn, South Africa
Distance approx. 400-450 km; driving time approx. 6-7h
Driving along the scenic Route 62 you will pass the Langkloof towns of Humansdorp, Kareedouw, Joubertina and De Rust. Honeybush tea and fruit are grown in this very dry area irrigated by water flowing down from the surrounding mountains. Your overnight destination is Oudtshoorn a famous for its ostrich farms, historical houses and the Cango Caves. You will overnight in a standard room at the De Zeekoe Guest Farm outside Oudtshoorn.
Day 13-14 Oudtshoorn, South Africa - Stellenbosch, South Africa
Distance day 13 approx. 400 km; driving time approx. 6-7h
Today’s journey takes you further west along the Route 62 via Calitzdorp, Ladismith and Worcester. Your destination is the town of Stellenbosch in the heart of South Africa’s most famous wine-growing district. The surrounding mountains create a dramatic backdrop to the beautiful vineyards. The town and its historical streets and buildings can be explored on foot or you may want to join a wine tasting tour to sample the fruit of the winemakers’ labours. You will overnight at the the Auberge Rozendal 8km from the town..
Day 15 Stellenbosch, South Africa - Cape Town, South Africa
Distance approx. 70 km; driving time approx. 1h
You return to Cape Town in the morning. Depending on your flight’s departure, there might be time for some last-minute shopping or lunch in the city before returning your vehicle at the airport. Should you want to stay some additional days in Cape Town, we will gladly arrange this.
- Self-drive tour according to the itinerary
- 14 nights’ accommodation in guesthouses, chalets, bungalows and lodges
as indicated in the itinerary
- Meals as indicated in the itinerary
- Flights (international and domestic)
- Rental car (please contact us for a quote)
- Meals not indicated in the itinerary
- Beverages (alcohol and soft drinks)
- Possible toll- and crossing border fees
- National park fees
- Optional activities
- Visa, tips, personal expenses, travel insurance
How safe is a self drive tour in South Africa?
- In general South Africa is not a lot more dangerous than other countries in the world. Most crimes and acts of violence take place in the townships of bigger cities. Public areas around shopping centres, restaurants, banks etc. are very safe. Nevertheless you should stick to a couple of rules to avoid risky or dangerous situations. This includes staying away from dodgy areas, walking in the dark, carrying a lot of cash or expensive cameras on you, wearing flashy jewellery and leaving bags or valuables in the car.
What is the infrastructure like (road conditions, shops, petrol stations)?
- South Africa in general has a very good infrastructure and with the exception of private roads and some roads in the national parks, most of the roads are tarred.
- Petrol stations can be found alongside all major routes and highways as well as in cities/villages.
- There are more than enough different and well-stocked shops available and many petrol stations also have a little convenience shop.
On which side of the road will I be driving?
- In Southern Africa vehicles are right-hand drives hence driving is done on the left-hand side of the roads.
Do I need an international driver’s licence?
- According to the law, all you need is a valid driver’s licence which has been issued in English and has a photo thereon. If your national driver’s licence has not been issued in English or does not have a photo, you need an international driver’s licence.
- As per the terms and conditions of the rental car companies, only a valid national driver’s licence and a credit card is required.
Can I enter the national parks with the rental car?
- Most roads within the national parks are tarred or good gravel and all are accessible to rental cars. Please however take note that you have to stick to the rules of the national parks at all time. These include: remaining in your vehicle unless you are in a designated area, sticking to the speed limit of 50 km/h on tar and 40 km/h on gravel roads and not littering.
- Most national parks offer guided game drives in open safari vehicles accompanied by a professional ranger. Night drives are especially recommendable if you are interested in seeing the nocturnal animals. All game drives can be booked at the camps directly.
How will I be able to find my way around?
- Along with your travel documents you will receive a voucher that includes detailed directions and contact details for all the pre-booked accommodation.
- Some rental car companies provide road maps but as not all of them do, it is advisable to bring a good map with a map scale of at least 1:1,5 mill. with you.
What meals are included and what food can be expected on tour?
- Meals are included as indicated in the itinerary.
- Breakfast usually consists of a full English breakfast and cereals, toast, cheese, jam, fruits, juices, tea, coffee.
- Since most of the days are spent on the road or in the national parks, no lunches have been included.
- As South Africa is well-known for its great cuisine and there is such a big variety of different restaurants, dinner has been excluded on most days. This allows you to make your own choices and to enjoy different dining experiences. Most restaurants offer an à la carte menu with different meat, poultry, fish, rice, pasta and vegetable dishes.
What about the money matter?
- You can either exchange your own currency for South African Rand at one of the exchange bureaus at the airport or in town or you can go to an ATM and draw South African Rand at the current rate of exchange. Please note that you need a Maestro card or any credit card (VISA, MasterCard, American Express, Diners Club) and your pin code to draw money.
- Credit cards are also widely accepted but as there are still some shops and petrol stations that do not accept credit cards, make sure you always have some cash on hand.
Do I need vaccinations for this self drive tour?
- As the Kruger Park is situated within a malaria area, we would recommend some precautions. Please speak to your doctor or travel clinic about the different prophylaxis and their effects and side effects.
- Although none of the countries visited on tour require proof of immunization against Tetanus, Diphtheria, Polio and Hepatitis A & B, we nevertheless recommend those vaccinations.