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Trip Report

The Garden Route Road Trip - South Africa

A week of nature, wine, adrenaline and ocean views along South Africa's south coast

frameambition - julie
by frameambition - julieAbout Me:Frame Ambition is a travel and culture blog by Julie O - a Kenyan writer, dance lover and almost-architect. Come over for vibes at festivals, on trains, doing workstays and decolonizing travel at every opportunity. read more

AfricaSouth Africa9 days / March - April - May - June - July - August - September 2017

Highs & Lows

Look out for the highest bridge bungee jump in the world

Public transport and shuttles make for little flexibility

Itinerary Overview

This is one of many backpacking trips I’ve taken on the most scenic of routes along South Africa’s Garden Route between the coastal cities of Port Elizabeth and Cape Town. The trip can be started at either end but I prefer to wrap it up in the ‘Mother City’ of Cape Town as there is so much to enjoy and see in the city and surrounds.

Many people rent a car and self-drive however there are also options such as public transport (various bus companies) that will stop at many towns on the route and shuttle services which offer door-to-door trips right to your accommodation.

This is one for food and wine lovers, adrenalin junkies, anyone who appreciates hideaways in nature and of course water-babies from surfers to whale-watchers.

  • 3 Nights: Port Elizabeth
    The Friendly City
  • 1 Night: Nature's Valley
    Indigenous forests and adventure of all kinds
  • Day trip: Oudtshoorn
    The Ostrich Capital of the World
  • 1 Night: Franschhoek
    Food, wine and picturesque farms
  • 4 Nights: Cape Town
    The Mother City

Q & A

  • What would you have changed?

    I'd have spent a little more time in the small towns in the Eastern Cape - Knysna and Jeffrey's Bay have some beautiful beaches, small guesthouses and food to get into.

  • How was the food?

    Make lots of stops at the farm stalls particularly in smaller towns for fresh bread, pies and more home-made goodness!

  • What tips would you give a friend?

    If you do self-drive, check that your accommodations have off-street parking for safety and peace of mind. Not all of them are able to offer that, especially in bigger cities.

  • Packing tips?

    Prepare for a little light rain in the summer, although the weather is generally beautiful.

  • Transportation Tips?

    Self-drive really is the best option to stay flexible and stop wherever you want.