Top 10 Car Rental Services in Knysna.

The Garden Route is arguably one of South Africa’s most beautiful areas to explore – so it’s no surprise that travellers (and locals) love travelling around this gorgeous region by car.

To make the most of your visit to Knysna and the Garden Route overall, call up one of these car rental providers:

#1 Tortoise Car Hire

Based in Sedgefield (ideally close to Knysna), Tortoise Car Hire has been going strong since 2005. They offer a wide, well-established range of new vehicles, perfect for your rental needs.

With discounted cars and delivery across the Garden Route (from Knysna to Plett), this stellar car rental service is the one to call!

Contact: +27 (044) 343 2991

Website: www.tortoisecarhire.co.za

Address: Tortoise Car Hire, Sedgefield, Western Cape

#2 Rental Cars

With some of the best budget car hire in SA and one of the world’s biggest online car rental services, Rental Cars allows customers to save on luxury, economy and family car hire.

Take your pick from everything from practical cars to rangy SUVs… the choice is yours!

Contact: n/a

Website: www.rentalcars.com

Address: n/a

#3 Europcar

Offering both car and van rentals, Europcar is one of the more diverse local providers around. Handily, it’s also one of the most widespread, meaning its available in the Garden Route too!

With its impressive, long-standing reputation, it needs little to no introduction and is almost a household name, even among those who’ve never used a car rental service before.

Contact: +27 044 382 2733

Website: www.europcar.com

Address: Europcar, Knysna, Western Cape

#4 Tempest Car Hire

Tempest Car Hire is a top, nationwide provider, found everywhere from Gauteng to the Western Cape.

They offer cheap car hire and great rental rates across SA, including Knysna.

Contact: +27 (011) 5788300

Website: www.tempestcarhire.co.za

Address: Tempest Car Hire, Knysna, Western Cape

www.southafrica.to
www.southafrica.to

#5 AVIS Rent a Car

With AVIS, car rentals are made oh-so-easy… Especially since this leading nationwide provider is a reliable and cost-friendly car rental option.

Rent a quality car from them and enjoy a journey of pure pleasure while in Knysna!

Contact: +27 (044) 382 2222

Website: www.avis.co.za

Address: AVIS Rent a Car, Knysna, Western Cape

#6 Comfort Car Hire

Ever since its establishment in 2000, Comfort Car Hire has been going from strength-to-strength. To date, it’s one of the biggest independent car rental companies in SA.

Situated across the country – from Upington to Stellenbosch – Comfort Car Hire offers a range of comfortable, popular car hire vehicles, categorised according to cost effectiveness and fuel-friendliness.

Contact: n/a

Website: www.comfortcarhire.co.za

Address: Comfort Car Hire, Knysna, Western Cape

#7 Crazy Car Hire

With Crazy Car Hire, customers are assured crazy car rental deals and specials.

But that’s not all because this car rental provider also has a good vehicle range (which includes larger vehicles too) – and some pretty cool add-ons for you to enjoy!

Contact: n/a

Website: crazycarhire.co.za

Address: Crazy Car Hire, Western Cape, South Africa

#8 Garden Route Car Rental

With the affordable, trouble-free Garden Route Car Rental, customers are guaranteed operations and delivery across this special region.

In addition to this, you can also expect great daily deals, booking transparency and quality vehicles to boot, ensuring a pleasant travel experience throughout!

Contact: +27 (083) 772 9254

Website: www.gardenroutecarrental.com

Address: Garden Route Car Rental, Knysna, Western Cape

www.gardenroutemeander.co.za
www.gardenroutemeander.co.za

#9 Economy Car Rentals 

If you’re after the best deal around, then, when you book and plan out your Knysna trip, be sure to earmark Economy Car Rentals!

Promising quality and expertise, as well as the best brands at low prices, Economy Car Rentals is certainly a fine car rental choice.

Contact: +27 (021) 813 5832

Website: www.economycarrentals.com

Address: Economy Car Rentals, Knysna, Western Cape

#10 AutoHireSA

AutoHireSA is a car rental provider that believes in safe, professional and quality service. This comes first and foremost with their cars… and not simply as an afterthought!

With deliveries, collections and effortlessly easy bookings, you can expect a wonderfully simple and good car rental experience all round.

Contact: +27 (079) 552 9234

Website: www.autohiresa.co.za

Address: AutoHireSA, George, Western Cape

These are the best car rental services in lovely Knysna – experience them first-hand today!

Top 20 Plettenberg Restaurants.

Pretty Plettenberg Bay has something for everyone to enjoy when it comes to restaurants and eateries.

With a wide range of diverse cafes, fine dining establishments, bistros and more, visitors will find an array of flavours and foods to sink their teeth into in this Garden Route-based city.

Here are some of the best Plett restaurants to enjoy in 2017:

#1 Zinzi

www.zinzi.hunterhotels.com

Meaning ‘abundance’ in Swahili, this vibrant restaurant, located on Hunter’s Estate, is a marvel of architecture, interior design and great dining in the Garden Route.

It has an incredible forest setting and offers an exciting, tasty menu, prepared by a passionate team of chefs, who use only the freshest ingredients to make Zinzi’s honest, yet innovative dishes.

Contact: (044) 532 8226

Website: www.zinzi.hunterhotels.com

Location: Hunter’s Estate, N2, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#2 Bramon Restaurant

Located on the Bramon Wine Estate, Bramon Restaurant explores new horizons, as the restaurant combines interesting recipes with award-winning wines.

This popular wine estate restaurant is set overlooking the Tsitsikamma Mountains and elephants – and offers freshly-prepared, tapas-inspired dishes for the whole family to enjoy. Booking is advised.

Contact: (073) 833 8183

Website: www.bramonwines.co.za

Location: Bramon Wine Estate, N2, The Crags, Plettenberg, Garden Route

#3 The Fat Fish Restaurant

Well-positioned on Plettenberg’s Central Beach – with startling views of the Indian Ocean, Piesang Valley River and Tsitsikamma Mountains – this restaurant offers a casual, yet upbeat vibe.

The kitchen is headed up by head chef, Kirsty Sinclair, who helps prepare tasty dishes to ensure a quality menu and meal for guests.

Tuck into fresh, SASSI-complaint seafood or tantalising tapas – paired with some cocktails or fine, locally produced wines – made from only the freshest ingredients.

Contact: (044) 533 4740

Website: www.thefatfish.co.za

Location: Mlikwood Centre, Hopwood Street, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#4 Nguni Restaurant

Located in one of Plett’s most historical buildings (a 100+ year-old dairy), it’s only fitting that this restaurant offers nostalgic African flair.

The African menu is a reflection of South African favourites like: Boboie, Karoo lamb, ostrich, game, biltong and springbok.

With eclectic African interiors, complete with an original wood-fire stove, and a sunny veranda outside, visitors are provided with a true taste of SA – and in particular, the Cape.

Contact: (044) 533 6710

Website: www.nguni-restaurant.co.za

Location: 6 Crescent Street, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#5 Ristorante Enrico

With a terrace overlooking the ocean and a friendly atmosphere inside and out, it’s hard not to love this homely, relaxed Italian restaurant – particularly with hands-on owner, Enrico, always around to make his guests feel welcome.

Using fresh ingredients and raw, natural products, Enrico prepares tasteful, delicious dishes, inspired by his Roman roots.

His signature dish is the Fish Enrico – but the starters and desserts are equally tempting, as are the daily specials!

Contact: (044) 535 9818

Website: www.enricorestaurant.co.za

Location: 296 Main Street, Keurboomstrand, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#6 SeaFood at The Plettenberg

Drawing inspiration from the region’s rich marine life, the cuisine at SeaFood includes superb signature dishes, served all day.

There is also a unique tapas menu, served around the pool or from the terrace, which overlooks the ocean. High tea is also available here. Booking is advised.

Since it is part of The Collection by Liz McGrath, class and quality are a prerequisite at this seaside, hotel-based restaurant.

Contact: (044) 533 2030

Website: www.collectionmcgrath.com

Location: 40 Church Street, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

www.collectionmcgrath.com

#7 Emily’s Restaurant

Found at Emily Moon River Lodge, this restaurant exudes the essence of Africa, with a touch of her spirit and mystery too. This is present in everything from the beautiful collectors’ items to the kelims, carved mermaids and Nguni skins inside.

There’s a touch of old-school elegance and mystique here, and chef Jana produces an eclectic menu, particularly primed for candlelit dinners.

The large deck, overlooking the Bitou River, is great or sundowners, while the carved Ethiopian day bed, set in front of a log fire, is great for cosy, post-meal drinks too.

The menu changes like the weather, so there’s always something new and fresh to enjoy.

Contact: (044) 501 2500

Website: www.emilymoon.co.za

Location: Emily Moon River Lodge, 1 Rietvlei Road, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#8 Kurland Restaurant

This restaurant has won numerous awards over the years, and no matter where you sit, elegant settings made for intimate meals and group celebrations abound.

Headed by executive chef Leon Coetzee, who prepares quality dishes, while treating guests to new recipes – and in so doing, taking them on an exciting culinary journey – dining at this hotel restaurant is an excellent experience all round.

Contact: (044) 534 8082

Website: www.kurland.co.za

Location: Kurland Hotel, The Crags, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#9 Peppermill Café

This café offers global tastes, as it embraces fresh dishes from around the world.

Guests can enjoy Good Morning breakfasts, Cajun chicken, healthy hummus, salad bowls, and other great light meals, in a laid-back café, which enjoys a delightfully tranquil setting that is ideal for family outings to The Crags.

Contact: (071) 324 4454

Website: www.plett-tourism.co.za

Location: The Crags, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#10 The Table Restaurant and Bar

Specialising in “simple food with serious taste”, The Table is a down-to-earth eatery, which focusses on bringing people together to enjoy good company – and even better food.

Every dish is lovingly made using the freshest ingredients – irrespective of whether you order a wood-fire pizza, handmade pasta dish or decadent dessert.

Signature dishes include the ostrich, with chilli-chocolate sauce, and seafood in a pizza basket.

Contact: (044) 533 3024

Website: thetable.co.za

Location: 9 Main Street, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#11 Equinox Flame & Flavour

www.lookout.co.za

This seaside restaurant right on Lookout Beach offers holiday makers and locals a classy, yet casual eat out experience.

Bringing flame and flavour to the Plett restaurant scene, Equinox (named after the Spring Tide of 2008, which transformed Lookout Beach) is a chic restaurant and bar, which offers everything from open-flame grilled tender cuts to super fresh seafood perfection, at the ocean’s edge…

Contact: (044) 533 0637

Website: www.lookout.co.za

Location: Lookout Beach, Hill Street, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#12 The Lookout Deck

This local Plett restaurant institution is a special place to enjoy special times. Nestled between The Lookout Rocks and Nature Reserve, it enjoys one of the best locations around and is very well-known and loved by visitors and locals alike.

It’s a must-visit eatery that provides guests with a selection of breakfasts, lunches, light snacks and dinners, as well as a choice of wine, exotic cocktails and other bar drinks to wash it all down.

Contact: (044) 533 1379

Website: www.lookout.co.za

Location: Lookout Beach, Hill Street, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#13 Lemon Grass Seaside Restaurant

Situated on the water’s edge, this terraced restaurant is open, warm and is a sensory treat in all respects, including the gorgeous surrounding views.

The menu offers a variety of freshly prepared dishes, from fish and seafood to meats and game, all of which draw either local or international inspiration.

If you’re looking for a restaurant with great food and an idyllic setting, Lemon Grass is the one for you.

Contact: (044) 533 5520

Website: www.lemongrassplett.co.za

Location: Salmack Road, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#14 The Burnt Orange

This is the new restaurant of chef Gareth Gardiner, former head chef of La Granada Divino (which appeared on Gordon Ramsay’s TV programme).

The Burnt Orange serves a variety of local and international dishes, drawing inspiration from Spain, Italy and other European culinary giants, and combining it with fresh, locally sourced ingredients for your ultimate food satisfaction.

There’s also a lovely outdoor space where diners can enjoy cocktails and sundowners as the sun sets.

Contact: (072) 704 1501

Website: www.plett-tourism.co.za

Location: Piesang Valley Road, Brackenridge Private Residential Estate, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#15 Off the Hook

This vibrant and trendy restaurant, complete with a homely touch, is perfect for families to enjoy relaxing and dining together.

The menu offers local seafood specialties, served with a choice of varied, delicious side orders.

To further complement this dining experience, add one of the top quality wines or if you prefer, a cup of good coffee with a slice from one of their delicious cakes.

Contact: (044) 533 0796

Website: offthehookplett.co.za

Location: Beacon Island Centre, Beacon Island Drive, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#16 Clare’s Cakes & Deli

At Clare’s, you can get cakes for all occasions and enjoy wowing your friends and loved ones with one of these masterful, iced creations – or simply, satisfying those sweet tooth cravings…

Products are made using only the finest ingredients and everything is made with the utmost care and love.

Clare’s Cakes & Deli also supplies cakes to local hotels and coffee shops, and their Chocolate Mousse Cake the stuff of baked legend in these parts.

Contact: (044) 533 0000

Website: www.clarescakes.co.za

Location: Main Street, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

Clare’s Cakes & Deli via Facebook

#17 LM in PLett

This restaurant offers guests a taste of Mozambique in Plett and with its good service and mouth-watering fare, it makes for a memorable dining experience.

The menu combines Indian, Portuguese and African food and guests can enjoy sharing traditional meals in this unique local restaurant.

Contact: (044) 533 1420

Website: lmplett.co.za

Location: 6 Yellowwood Corner, Main Street, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#18 The View Tapas Café and Bar

Boasting spectacular views, an affordable menu and sound service, this is the perfect place for a chilled night out with friends or family.

The View serves yummy tapas made and designed from locally sourced ingredients, and offers awesome al fresco dining in fair weather, though there’s also ample bar seating inside too.

Contact: (044) 533 0165

Website: www.plett-tourism.co.za

Location: Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#19 Courtyard Café

Nestled in the heart of Plett, this wonderful courtyard coffee shop is a great place to head for a coffee and a delicious meal.

Serving everything from breakfasts, toasted sandwiches, burgers and light meals to speciality Greek food – which includes the likes of Greek shortbread cookies, spinach pies and falafels – Courtyard Café is the place to come for good Greek hospitality and simple, yet tasty food.

Contact: (044) 533 3331

Website: www.plett-tourism.co.za

Location: Shop 9A Melville’s Corner, Main Street, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#20 Down to Earth Restaurant

This is relatively new, natural/organic restaurant is located at Plett River Lodge. The focus at the aptly named Down to Earth is strongly on health and locally sourced ingredients, as well as ethically prepared meals.

This waterfront venue is perfect for hosting special occasions; intimate dinners – or even simply enjoying a cup of tea on a lazy afternoon.

Contact: (044) 533 5843

Website: www.plettriverlodge.com

Location: Plett River Lodge, N2, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

These are just some of the awesome restaurants you can enjoy in Plettenberg Bay if you live in or visit this phenomenal Garden Route city during 2017.

Top 20 activities in Plettenberg Bay 2017.

Situated along the gorgeous Garden Route, Plettenberg Bay is a trove of beautiful beaches, secret adventures, caring animal sanctuaries, surf spots and so much more; it’s a tourist destination of note, among local South African travellers and foreign tourists alike.

Here are some of the best activities to enjoy in Plettenberg Bay:

#1 Enjoy family fun at Adventure Land

Offering good, clean fun for the whole family, Adventure Land is a place of water rides, playgrounds, super tubes and more. There are also awesome braai and picnic facilities, as well as a take-away kiosk, if required.

Highlights include the 75-metre super tube; 2-lane racer; kamikaze slide (with a 12-metre drop!) and even some kiddies’ slides and splash pools for the tots.

Contact: (044) 532 7869

Website: www.adventurelandplett.co.za

Address:  Adventure Land, Plettenberg Bay, Thohoyandou-F, Thohoyandou, Garden Route

#2 Cycle the 14-km Buffalo Hills MTB Trail

For avid cyclists, the 14-kilometre, circular route at Buffalo Hills Reserve is an awesome outdoor experience.

Here, you can enjoy riding a relatively easy route (though there are, nevertheless, some challenges in store), which should take you between 1.5 to 2 hours to finish.

Ride through grassy plains, forest and then onto a single-track. What’s more, there’s a great ascent up a jeep track, where you can stop and admire the surrounding reserve’s spectacular scenery. Do a self-guided tour (minimum of three riders must participate) or opt for a guided one and learn about the forest and flora as you ride.

Contact: (044) 535 9739, (082) 783 8392

Website: www.sa-venues.com

Address: Buffalo Hills Reserve (off R340 towards Wittedrif), Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#3 Experience game drives at Plett Game Reserve

www.collectionmcgrath.com

Located some 20 minutes outside Plett, the Plettenberg Game Reserve is a wonderful place to experience African wildlife/terrain and to enjoy seeing the Big 5 in their natural habitat.

Two great activities to choose from when visiting are the game drive or horse safari, which both run for two hours. Or, if you want to experience something even more exotic, try the new 1.5-hour-long Elephant Safari.

The game drive and horse safari both allow you to experience game on a real wildlife safari – either from horseback or from inside a vehicle.

Contact: (044) 535 0000/1

Website: www.plettgamereserve.com

Address: Plettenberg Bay Game Reserve, R340 Road, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#4 Enjoy educational entertainment at Plett Puzzle Park

Found in the heart of the Garden Route, this unique attraction offers interactive family-fun. Activities are designed with all ages and sizes in mind and are intended to provide educational entertainment in an affordable way.

Plett Puzzle Park’s main attractions are the life-sized 3D Maze (a first of its kind in SA) and the exciting Forest Puzzle Walk.

There’s also an on-site childrens’ play area and coffee/puzzle gift shop set in a tranquil garden, with oversized garden games to keep visitors occupied.

Contact: (044) 534 8853

Website: www.plettpuzzlepark.co.za

Address: Plett Puzzle Park, Greater Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

www.plettpuzzlepark.co.za

#5 Be amazed at Birds of Eden

Birds of Eden – the world’s largest free-flight aviary – is a unique, two-hectare dome, spanning across beautiful indigenous forest.

It aims to provide a sanctuary for birds, as well as miniature monkeys. Donations and bird releases once a protocol and criteria have been met, are welcome.

With a mysterious ruin, walk-behind waterfall, 200-seater amphitheatre and some 3,500 birds, it’s an experience like no other.

Contact: (044) 534 8906

Website: www.birdsofeden.co.za

Address: The Crags, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#6 Have your eyes opened at Junkani Wildlife Sanctuary

Home to an assortment of big cats (like lion, cheetah, Siberian and Benegal tigers, leopard, jaguars, pumas and more), zorilla, hyena and honey badgers, Junkani Wildlife Sanctuary is an eye-opening, once-in-a-lifetime experience for one and all.

The only sanctuary of its kind in the Garden Route, it is a conservation wildlife park, which gives animals the freedom to run, play and explore.

There are daily tours (from 9:00 am – 4:00pm), which are conducted in all weather conditions and which provide great insight into all Junkani’s animals.

Contact: (044) 534 8409

Website: www.jukani.co.za

Address: Junkani Wildlife Sanctuary, The Crags, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#7 Monkey around at Monkeyland Primate Sanctuary

The world’s first free-roaming, multi-species primate sanctuary of Monkeyland offers tours, and comprises of more than 550 primates.

This primate sanctuary presently houses some 18 different species, 11 of which roam freely around the 12-hectare forest that makes up Monkeyland. The other seven are housed in large cages within the main forest or else, call the nearby Birds of Eden home.

There is also an excellent, 128-metre suspended canopy walk, restaurant, souvenir store and viewing deck, with multi-lingual guides on-hand to provide insight into these amazing monkeys.

Contact: (044) 534 8906

Website: www.monkeyland.co.za

Address: Monkeyland, The Crags, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#8 Hit the beach – any beach

www.tripadvisor.co.za

Plettenberg Bay is all about the beach, with surfing, bodyboarding, sun tanning, swimming and more on offer in this sun-loving, seaside city. The three most popular and beautiful beaches in Plett are Central Beach, Robberg Beach and Lookout Beach.

Each of this beach trio offers something different: Central Beach is great for families and sunbathers, with lifeguards on duty for the swimmers; Lookout is popular among SUP paddlers and surfers – and finally, Robberg is wonderful for long walks, beach runs and even paddle skiing.

Contact: (083) 655 3618

Website: www.plettenberg-bay.co.za

Address: Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#9 Birding and bird-watching at Fynbos Ridge

This private nature reserve, some 7km outside of Plett, is the ideal place for birding. Owners Brian and Liz Philips have ensured a delightful fynbos home for all kinds of birds, providing a rustic, yet natural environment for these feathered residents.

Birds are partially habituated so photographers will have the chance to take numerous shots, as birds visit feeding trays and birdbaths dotted about the grounds.

With a list of roughly 90 species, every inch of the property is overflowing with birdlife, fynbos and proteas.

Tick everything from Pin-tailed Whydas to Forest Canaries, Sunbirds, Sugarbirds and even Fish Eagles off your list. Fynbos Ridge is also one of only three bird-friendly establishments in Plett, as approved by BirdLife South Africa.

Contact: (044) 533 0106

Website: www.fynbosridge.co.za

Adddress: Fynbos Ridge Nature Reserve, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#10 Saddle up with Hog Hollow Horse Trails

Experience the amazing Tsitsikamma Forest on horseback with Hog Hollow Horse Trails.

Choose between either a one-hour-long farm trail, with views out across the mountains and forest, or enjoy a two-hour-long forest trail, a three-hour-long private nature reserve trail or even a half/full day Cruise The Crags Trail, which will see you riding to various nearby attractions on horseback.

Booking is essential and comfortable clothing, sunblock and closed-in shoes are highly advised.

Contact: (082) 771 3745

Website: www.cruisethecrags.co.za or www.horseridinggardenroute.com

Address: Hog Hollow Horse Trails, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#11 Close encounters with the Whale kind

www.hog-hollow.com

If you’re looking to enjoy some close encounters with these gentle underwater mammals, particularly during Whale Season, by chartered boat – then Ocean Blue Adventures is your answer.

Enjoy awesome, permitted whale watching, as well as possible dolphin and other sea animal sightings, and get a brief history of the area too.

Trips last between 1.5 and 2 hours and no guaranteed sightings are given; booking is advised.

Contact: (044) 533 5083

Website: oceanadventures.co.za

Address: Ocean Blue Adventures, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#12 Go fishing in Robberg Nature Reserve

The national monument and nature reserve of the Robberg Peninsula: Robberg Nature Reserve offers limited rock and surf angling, with permits from the Marine and Coastal Management available from Cape Nature.

So while you can enjoy some fun recreational fishing, please be advised that bait-collecting, fishing from boats and spearfishing are entirely prohibited.

Contact: (044) 533 2125

Website: www.safarinow.com

Address: Robberg Nature Reserve, Airport Road, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#13 Explore the Elephant Sanctuary

Offering African elephants and an interactive experience (which can include elephant back riding), the Elephant Sanctuary at The Crags, is dedicated to elephant conservation and allowing guests to enjoy intimate experiences with these huge mammals.

Guides are committed, well-trained and insightful and will help you to interact with, ride and even touch the elephants.

Contact: (044) 534 8145

Website: www.elephantsanctuary.co.za

Address: Elephant Sanctuary, Animal Alley, The Crags (off the N2 near Natures Valley), Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#14 Go wild with Radical Raptors

www.radicalraptors.co.za

Opened in 2008, Radical Raptors is a rehabilitation centre, which aims to create community awareness on the rescue, rehabilitation and release of noble birds of prey.

Operating directly under the rules and regulations laid down by Cape Nature Conservation, Radical Raptors is a caring, yet exciting experience. Visitors are invited to enjoy a flying display, which sees a variety of trained, non-releasable birds of prey flying around freely, allowing guests the chance to admire, photograph and watch these magnificent birds – weather permitting.

Contact: (044) 532 7537

Website: www.radicalraptors.co.za

Address: Radical Raptors, The Heath, N2, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#15 Visit the Harkerville Saturday Village Market

Every Saturday, this rural and rustic, but also ultra-vibey, market takes places in the heart of the Garden Route. It’s a mix of flea-, craft- and farmers’-market combined and offers an all-round South African market experience.

There is a wealth of stalls, with the likes of organic food, jewellery, woodwork, clothing, flowers, music, books and more on offer.

Contact: (084) 510 9939

Website: www.harkervillemarket.co.za

Address: Harkerville Saturday Village Market, Harkerville, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#16 ‘Run’ with wolves at Garden Route Wolf Sanctuary

Situated between Knysna and Plett, this exciting sanctuary offers interactive tours that take visitors through wolf enclosures, offering a truly unique and intimate experience.

Aside from the wolf packs, there are also friendly wild dogs and huskies awaiting to greet guests.

You can enjoy a guided tour, which runs for +/- 40 minutes, with no prior booking required.

There is also a touch farm, with farmyard animals, and a restaurant, offering breakfasts and light meals.

Contact: (074) 303 0657

Website: wolfsanctuary.co.za

Address: Garden Route Wolf Sanctuary, N2, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

TeamWolfArt Photography

#17 Shop at Porcupine Ceramics

Selling hand-made ceramics crafted by fire, Porcupine Ceramics makes ‘raku’-fired ceramic art pieces, inspired by African art and animals. Items include sculptures, plates, pots and other goods, all of which reflect the colours and traditions of our wonderful continent.

Products are produced by a group of local artisans, who have been trained and mentored by Porcupine since 1994.

Visit The Mill, a factory shop and studio, at The Crags and enjoy a tour of the working studio daily, from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm.

Contact: (044) 534 8910

Website: porcupineceramics.com

Address:  Porcupine Ceramics, The Mohair Mill, Kirbywood, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#18 Try something new with Learn to Surf Plett

As mentioned earlier, Plett is a surfers’ paradise and, with so many great beaches, it’s only natural for those keen on surfing to flock here.

Even if you can’t yet surf, there is hope with Learn to Surf Plett. This locally owned and operated surf school offers lessons for surfing and stand-up paddle boarding, taught by passionate people, with a love for surfing and the ocean.

Learn to Surf Plett is suitable for those of all ages, though booking is required.

Contact: (082) 436 6410

Website: learntosurfplett.co.za

Address: Learn to Surf Plett, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#19 Get up high with AfriCanyon Adventures

Experience unique canyoning, kloofing and gorge-walking with AfriCanyon. Discover the fun of canyoning/kloofing in the amazing Crags, try optional jumps, navigate deep gorges and even takr a cool, rock-pool zip line.

All professional equipment is provided but bookings for those 10 years and older is essential.

Contact: (044) 534 8055

Website: www.africanyon.com

Address: AfriCanyon Adventures, The Crags, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#20 Take in the beauty of Robberg Nature Reserve

Situated some 8km outside of Plett, you will find the beautiful Robberg Nature Reserve. This national monument and World Heritage Site is one special place and no visit to Plettenberg Bay is complete without having successfully explored some of Robberg Nature Reserve.

There is an assortment of hikes, walks and wildlife to be seen and enjoyed when visiting this reserve and for those who wish to linger longer, there is even an overnight hut to stay in.

Contact: (044) 533 2125/85

Website: www.capenature.co.za/reserves/robberg-nature-reserve
Address: Robberg Nature Reserve, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

www.boldtravel.com

These are just some of the top activities you can enjoy when you visit the paradise-like Plettenberg Bay in the Cape’s most gorgeous Garden Route.

 

Top 20 activities in Knysna 2017.

The beautiful Garden Route town of Knysna is by far one of South Africa’s most scenic and wonderful towns to explore, with so much on offer.

Here are some fun and different activities to enjoy in Knysna:

#1 Visit the Knysna Elephant Park

Experience an unforgettable up-close and personal experience with these famous gentle, giants, on their terms at the wonderful Knysna Elephant Park, which was first established in 1994, as SA’s first facility to house and look after orphaned African elephants.

Visitors can enjoy viewing the creatures in their natural habitat, free from inhibiting fencing, with well-trained staff on-hand to ensure safety for all.

Contact: (044) 532 7732

Website: http://knysnaelephantpark.co.za

Address: Off the N2 between Knysna and Plettenberg Bay

Photo credit: Fernanda Machado via Instagram

#2 Enjoy Brenton Beach

At Brenton-on-Sea, lying near the Knysna Western Head, you can visit the pristine, beautiful Brenton Beach. It is surrounded by indigenous forests and of course, edged by the stunning, warm Indian Ocean.

Enjoy long walks along the breath-taking shoreline, gathering sea shells and exploring little pools and rocks.

Contact: (044) 382 5510

Website: http://www.visitknysna.co.za

Address: Brenton Beach, Brenton-on-Sea, Knysna

#3 Picnic and hike at Jubilee Creek

Enjoy a beautiful forest picnic alongside a cool, forest stream. There are lots of picnic sites (with facilities).

You can also do the Jubilee Creek walk to a waterfall and swimming hole. Cost is R17 per adult and R9 per child, for kids under 13.

Contact: (044) 302 5600

Website: http://www.gardenrouteadventureguide.com

Address: Jubilee Creek Nature Reserve, Knysna

#4 Take a ferry trip across the Lagoon

Enjoy a ferry ride across the Lagoon with Knysna Charters to the iconic Knysna Heads. Cruises depart daily from Whet Restaurant, Thesen Island.

Trips last approximately 75 minutes. R310 (adults) and R100 (children), with prices valid till end April 2017.

Contact: (082) 892 0469

Website: http://www.knysnacharters.com

Address: Whet Restaurant, Thesen Island, Knysna

#5 Visit the Wild Oats Community Farmers’ Market

For some 15 years, this diverse and internationally famous farmers’ market, situated on the outskirts of nearby coastal town Sedgefield, has been attracting locals and travellers alike.

Experience the award-winning market first-hand every Saturday, come rain or shine, throughout the year to buy fresh, locally produced foods, bottled goods and so much more.

Times (summer) 7:30am – 12pm and 8:00 am – 12pm (winter).

Contact: (082) 376 5020

Website: http://www.wildoatsmarket.co.za

Address: N2, Sedgefield

Photo credit: Ingrid Botha via Instagram

#6 Head to Buffalo Bay Beach

Lying some 25 minutes from Forest Edge is one of the cleanest, safest and loveliest of the Garden Route’s beaches. Famous for whale watching and surfing, it’s popular among families and outdoor adventurers both.

There’s a restaurant/shop and life guards during the busy season.

Contact: (044) 383 0038

Website: http://www.forestedge.co.za

Address: Buffalo Bay Beach, Knysna

#7 Experience Featherbed Nature Reserve

This South African Natural Heritage Site is home to two of the Garden Route’s biggest icons, the Knsyna Loerie and Blue Duiker, one of the smallest antelope species in Africa, and other wildlife!

Join the daily 3.5-4-hour excursion to Featherbed Nature Reserve – a 150 hectare private nature reserve – which encompasses the whole Western Knysna Head. It includes a ferry ride, 4×4 drive up Western Knysna Head, optional guided 2.2 km trail walk and buffet lunch at a world-renowned forest restaurant.

Contact: (044) 382 1693

Website: http://www.knysnafeatherbed.com

Address: Featherbed Nature Reserve, Knysna Quays, Knysna

#8 Swim in the Drupkelders Rock Pools

Drupkelders – meaning Dripping Cellars – are wonderful rock pools within Knysna forest; do the 3.5km forest walk and visit these amazing rock pools.

Pack in a picnic and swimming clothes and don comfortable, good walking shoes. Only 12 people are allowed in per day, with a SANPARKS permit a must.

Contact: (044) 389 0126 or (044) 302 5606

Website: http://www.forestedge.co.za

Address: N2, between Knysna and Sedgefield

Photo credit: Jake Aikman via Instagram

#9 Explore the Knysna Heads

Go scuba diving and explore the depths of Knysna Heads. One of the most popular shore dives is to the wreck of Paquita, a German vessel, which sank in 1903.

However, the site experiences strong currents so may only be dived to on the turn of the tide. Here, you will also encounter a variety of underwater life in this vibrant lagoon.

Contact: none

Website: http://www.diveadvisor.co.za

Address: 25 George Rex, The Heads, Knysna

#10 Pop by Millwood Museum

Visit the intriguing Materolli Museum, which depicts the Millwood Goldfield Gold Rush of 1876, and Tea Garden, and learn about the birth of the former Millwood Mining Village.

Contact: (044) 302 6320

Website: http://www.gardenrouteadventureguide.com

Address: Queen Street, Knysna

#11 Winetasting and cheese platters at Packwood Wine Estate

Visit this award-winning vineyard-and-country estate, found between Plettenberg Bay and Knysna. It is surrounded by indigenous forest and offers amazing nature and views alike.

Enjoy wines and homemade cheese platters, produced from the estate’s gardens and dairy.

Contact: (044) 532 7614

Website: http://www.packwood.co.za

Address: Off N2, between Plettenberg Bay and Knysna, Garden Route

#12 Beer tasting at Mitchell’s Brewery

Started in 1983 by Lex Mitchell, the beer produced in Knsyna, is as unique as the beautiful town.

For R75 per person, you can experience the first microbrewery in South Africa and enjoy an extensive tour of it to see how handmade beer is produced to perfection.

Contact: (044) 382 5530

Website: http://www.mitchellsbrewing.com

Address: 10 New Street, Knsyna

#13 Do the Blombos Trail

Undertake the longest of six trails found within Goukamma Nature Reserve: Blombos Trail. It’s aimed primarily at bird spotters and has three different route option to choose from at 6.5, 13 and 15km respectively.

Contact: none

Website: http://www. gardenrouteadventureguide.com

Address: Goukamma National Reserve, Knsyna

#14 Cycle Harkeville MTB Trails

The Harkeville Trail offer a variety of mountain biking routes to suit all fitness levels and riders. They’re colour coded and include: Yellow (14km), Blue (12km), Green Route (15km) and Red Route (24km).

Contact: (044) 532 7793

Website: http://www.knysnacycles.co.za

Address: Harkeville, Garden Route

#15 Experience deep sea fishing

Operating out of the famous Knysna Heads, with Eco Afrika Tours you can experience the thrill of hooking, fighting and eventually holding your own fish proudly.

Their vessel is a registered charter with a fully qualified skipper on board. The trip includes a fully equipped 7-hour fishing adventure.

Cost is R900 per person, kids under 14 are not permitted and groups must include a minimum of 4, a maximum of 11 passengers.

Contact: (082) 558 6570

Website: http://www.eco-afrika-tours.co.za

Address: Eco Afrika Tours, Knysna, Garden Route

Photo credit: Mary Santore via Instagram

#16 Magical moonlight meander

Join Garden Route Trails for powerful and engaging trails through stunning environments. They educate on biodiversity and around new and full moon, offer the highly recommended Moonlight Meander and Starlight Stroll.

Judy Dixon will speak to hikers about the magic the rich intertidal area conceals; cost is R150 per person.

Contact: (083) 262 2307

Website: http://www.gardenroutetrail.travel

Address: Garden Route

#17 Enjoy the Garden of Eden Forest Walk

Located nearby in Plettenberg Bay, this amazing forest walk site, first opened in 1926, is set along boardwalks, is designed to be wheel-chair friendly (along the 800m trail) and is intended to give you the feeling of total seclusion.

Pack along a picnic lunch and enjoy this wonderful forest experience.

Contact: (012) 428 9111

Website: http://www.sanparks.org

Address: Harkeville, Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route

#18 Visit Grootdraai Picnic Site

Located outside Gouna Forest and near the Terblans Trail (though you will need a permit if you wish to hike this) is Grootdraai Picnic Site, equipped with braai and ablution facilities, a lawn picnic area, picnic benches and fresh water.

Consider doing the Terblans Trail first or simply head there straight away and settle down for a relaxed, tasty picnic at Grootdraai.

Contact: none

Website: http://www.gardenrouteguide.com

Address: Gouna Forest Station, Knysna

#19 Horse rides in Knysna Forest

Experience the forests and mountains in Knysna on horseback with the Dirty Boots horseriding tour operators.

Contact: esna@dirtyboots.co.za

Website: http://www.dirtyboots.co.za

Address: Knysna, Garden Route

#20 Kayak with Knysna Kayak tours

Enjoy kayaking in lovely Knysna with Knysna Kayak Hire. They are affordable and allow you to explore to Lagoon in your own time, meaning you can even stop over at the beach if you like too.

Contact: (082) 892 0469

Website: http://www.visitknysna.co.za

Address: Thesen Island, Knysna

Although there is always so much more in the lush, beautiful Garden Route to explore, these are certainly some of the top activities and experiences to enjoy in lovely Knysna.

Top 20 Restaurants in Knysna 2017.

Whether you’re there on a peaceful break or passing through on a cross-country road trip, this beautiful Garden Route town’s eateries will make a memorable impression.

Here are 20 top restaurants to enjoy in Knysna in 2017:

#1 Pembreys Bistro

Run by Cordon Bleu chef Peter and manager Viv Vadas, Pembreys offers guests an adventurous, well-balanced menu.

It offers tasty meals, inspired by travels to Italy, like authentic pasta dishes and Mediterranean-style salads. The restaurant-bistro possesses warm, country charm.

Contact: (044) 386 0005
Website: http://www.pembreys.co.za
Address: Pembreys Bistro, Brenton Road, Belvidere, Knysna

#2 East Head Café

Photo credit: Bernat Orsolya via Instagram

So much more than a café or coffee shop, East Head Café is something of a landmark. Situated on the famous Eastern Head’s rock, it offers wonderful views of the Knysna estuary and Indian Ocean.

Responsibly, the restaurant supports local suppliers and offers guests lovely seafood cuisine, including fish and chips and Cape Malay seafood curry.

Contact: (044) 384 0933
Website: http://www.eastheadcafe.co.za
Address: 25 George Rex Drive, Knysna

#3 Ile de Pain

In 2015, this popular local institution fell victim to a terrible fire. However, it re-opened recently, after chef-owner Liezie Mulder and master baker and chocolatier, Markus Farbinger transformed into a beautiful, light space.

The renewed restaurant/bakery is back with everything it was loved for previously: tasty meals, fresh artisanal breads and amazing pastries.

Contact: (044) 302 5705
Website: http://iledepain.co.za
Address: The Boatshed, Unit 10, Thesen Harbour Town, Knysna

#4 Die Gieter Restaurant

This lovely, casual French country-style restaurant is found on a private reserve, which overlooks the Knysna River.

Cathy and Remy’s Die Gieter offers generous portions of pita and dips, baked camembert, duck confit and duck fact potatoes, as well as delectable desserts (like poached pears and cheesecake) equally generously portioned.

Contact: (044) 386 0201
Website: http://m.facebook.com/Die-Gieter-Restaurant-Cathy-Rémy
Address: Phantom Pass Road, 5, Knysna

#5 The Veg Table Private Dining Room

This restaurant, housed in a lovely farm cottage, is a celebration of authentic ‘slow food’ and vegetables, all prepared in a Defy Jewel woodstove.

Brett Garvie’s experience as a botanist helps tremendously, as he forages for mushrooms, picks pecans and sources harvests from local gardens and harvests for his ever-changing menu. It’s advisable to book a table in advance.

Contact: (074) 833 9516
Website: http://www.vegtable.co.za
Address: Mermaids Rest, Rheenendal Road, Rheenendal, Knysna

#6 The Olive Tree

This Italian restaurant, led by Ellen Owens, has been producing lovely, tasty dishes in the very heart of Knysna for several years now.

It transforms from a relaxed eatery during the day to an elegant, romantic space in the evenings. With delicious mains like bobotie, home salads and Cape chicken and prawn curry, it’s sure to wow your taste buds.

Contact: (044) 382 5867
Website: http://www.facebook.com/pg/Olive-Tree-Restaurant
Address: 21 Main Road, (N2), Knysna

#7 Freshline Fisheries

Photo credit: Olga G. via Instagram

This unique, seafood restaurant offers a wide variety of lovely seafood dishes on the beach. It’s a perfect spot for a casual meal with those you love.

Enjoy favourites like fish and chips and Kingklip or the Wes Kus braai for delicious seafood fare in this outdoor beach restaurant. You can also buy fresh fish and frozen seafood to take home.

Contact: (044) 382 3131
Website: http://www.freshlinefisheries.co.za
Address: Railway Siding Dockyard, Corner of Long & Waterfront Drive, Knysna

#8 Anchorage Restaurant

The Anchorage is a traditional seafood restaurant in the epicentre of Knysna. It has been around for some 20 years now, and is considered one of Knysna’s oldest restaurants.

Over the years, owner Brian has offered his guests an unforgettable dining experience, with excellent seafood – like fresh fish, Knysna Oysters, seafood platters – mature Angus beef, vegetarian and chicken too, at this well-rounded eatery.

Contact: (044) 382 2230, (083) 310 2135
Website: http://www.anchoragerestaurant.co.za
Address: 11 Gray Street, Knysna

#9 Caffé Mario

Located at the Knysna Waterfront Quays, Caffe Mario offers lovely Italian in a beautiful, scenic setting. It’s a popular local eatery, for locals and visitors alike.

One of its most fun meals is the Super Mario full breakfast. They also offer tasty sandwiches, pastas, seafood, thin-crusted pizzas and wine.

Contact: (044) 382 7250
Website: http://www.knysnawaterfront.com/waterfront/restaurants.html
Address: Shop 9, Knysna Waterfront, Knysna

#10 Kilzer’s Kitchen

Photo credit: Kilzer’s Kitchen via Instagram

This is not your average restaurant, it’s a cookery school, which opens to the public once a week for six months of the year (from beginning November to end April).

Here, Albin and Jenny Kilzer combine two passions, cooking and teaching others, and offer cooking courses, as well as cook ‘n look evenings – but they also offer tasty meals at this restaurant if you’re around when it’s open for public eating.

Contact: (044) 382 0135
Website: http://www.kilzerskitchen.co.za
Address: No 3 & 5 Roos Bolton Crescent, Knysna Heights, Knysna

#11 Chatters Restaurant

This small, owner-run restaurant is vibey and is famous for its made-to-order, thin, crispy pizzas, which are made in their traditional, wood-fired oven.

They also offer homemade burgers, pastas, potato bakes, filled paninis, great desserts and takeaways, complemented by beers, wines and spirits.

Contact: (044) 382 0203
Website: http://www.chattersbistro.co.za
Address: 9a Gray Street, Knysna

#12 JJ’s Restaurant

With a mind to bring you the most delicious and lovely looking meals, as they extend a warm welcome, JJ’s is another Knysna Quays-based restaurant.

With ingredients sourced from the finest, local produce and freshly pricked herbs from Hoekwil, near Wilderness, you can expect tasty meals, which combine an array of good flavours.

Contact: (044) 382 3359
Website: http://www.jjsrestaurant.co.za
Address: Knysna Waterfront, Knysna

#13 34 South

This restaurant/food store, bakery, gift shop, fish monger, clothing emporium and bakery, with a fine wine shop on the side, offers a little something of everything at the appealing Knysna Quays.

Here, visitors will find fresh oysters, bread, wine, deli goods and even some sushi too. It’s a good spot for groups and for kids and they also offer take-aways.

Contact: (044) 382 7331
Website: http://www.34south.biz
Address: Shop 10, Knysna Waterfront, Knysna

#14 African Bean

Photo credit: @ stefsterontheroad via Instagram

A favourite among locals, this vibey café was open for twenty-four years before it closed briefly. However, it re-opened in 2014 and is back serving lovely café fare, breakfasts, snacks, lunches and burgers – like the Buffalo burger.

It has a tasteful, cosy interior and is a wonderful meeting spot for friends, loved ones and travellers too.

Contact: (079) 522 6664
Website: none
Address: 29 Main Street, Knysna

#15 Sirocco

This sister restaurant to 34 South and Tapas and Oysters is positioned on the water’s edge at Thesen Harbour Town.

Named for the warm Mediterranean wind, Sirocco is a great, vibey lunch and dinner venue, which serves good food in a sophisticated space and is open seven days a week. Aside from their main food menu, they also offer cocktails and beer, sushi and a wine list to enjoy.

Contact: (044) 382 4874
Website: http:// www.sirocco.co.za
Address: TH 28, Thesen Harbour Town, Knsyna

#16 Totties Farm Kitchen

Found along Rheenendal Ramble, Totties Farm Kitchen offers you a warm welcome and a selection of dishes carefully and freshly made.

Totties serves sandwiches, light meals, lunches, milkshakes and delicious desserts too, though it is their Sunday Buffet (R150 per person), which is particularly popular. They also host large functions and weddings.

Contact: (044) 389 0092
Website: http://www.tottiesfarmkitchen.co.za
Address: Main Road, Rheenendal, Knysna

#17 Tapas and Oysters

Photo credit: Nicky Sterley via Instagram

This vibrant restaurant is found on Thesen Island and enjoys perfect views over the Knysna Lagoon and famous Knysna Heads. Known for their friendly, vibey atmosphere, this waterside restaurant offers varied Spanish, Mediterranean and South African tapas.

They also offer fresh oysters, seafood, homemade dips and olives, salads, desserts and more, including: sushi, Mitchell’s beer and freshly baked, rocket salt baguettes.

Contact: (044) 382 7196
Website: http://www.tapasknysna.co.za
Address: TH 29, Thesen Island, Knysna

#18 O Pescador Restaurant

This Knysna Waterfront restaurant has been around for twenty-eight years now. Manny and his staff serve Mediterranean-Portuguese food in a warm, friendly space.

Included on the menu is fresh fish, steaks, chicken and seafood. O Pescador also has a Rhodesian Teak bar, with an open-plan kitchen.

Contact: (044) 382 3476
Website: http://www.knysnawaterfront.com/waterfront/restaurants.html
Address: Shop U4, Knysna Waterfront, Knysna

#19 Rib & Rump

This popular, local steakhouse offers AAA Grade steaks and pork ribs, flame grilled just right, as well as surf & turf, grilled chicken/eisbein, starters, salads and desserts too.

They also serve fresh fish from their sister restaurant, Freshline Fisheries. With relaxed indoor and outdoor seating, Rib & Rump is great for meals with friends and family, and bring the kids along too.

Contact: (044) 382 0722
Website: http://www.ribandrump.co.za
Address: Corner Waterfront Drive & Long Street, Railway Siding Dockyard, Knysna

#20 The Bell Tavern

Housed on-site of the original Belvidere farmhouse, Knysna’s smallest pub offers a wine cellar viewed through a window in the floor. With its yellowwood ceiling and ironwood block floor, The Bell Tavern is a favourite among Belvidere locals.

Enjoy pub meals outside during summer or next to a cosy, warm wood-fired stove in winter. They also offer a selection of locally brewed beers, including Mitchells, as well as Cape wines and spirits.

Contact: (044) 387 1055
Website: none
Address: Lower Duthie Drive, Belvidere Estate, Knysna

So whether it’s some of the famous Knysna oysters you’re after, a little bistro fare or even some sweet pastries, these top restaurants will be able to suit every palate’s needs in 2017.

 

7 Best Camping Spots in South Africa

With its diverse landscapes, wherein rolling hills bleed into magnificent mountains and lush, green grass turns to fynbos-covered terrain, South Africa makes for wonderful, varied camping opportunities.

Better still, SA has great camping spots spread across its many provinces, so whether you wish to be tucked away in the mountains, sleeping next to the whoosh of the ocean or lighting a campfire alongside the river, here are some of the most well-known and/or not-to-be-missed camping spots to try:

1. Storms River Mouth Rest Camp (Western Cape)

Found within arguably one of South Africa’s most beautiful and verdant regions, the Garden Route, Storms River Mouth Rest Camp – which spans some 5km towards the Tsitsikamma National Park’s eastern shore – allows guests access to 80km of undisturbed, rugged coastline, and comes with every necessary camping comfort.

Facilities include: a communal ablution block and kitchen, restaurant and store, as well as the added bonus of a Laundromat.

Experience rich birdlife in the forest and if you’re lucky, you might see otters and other native animals too, as you camp inside of the special Tsitsikamma National Park.

Tsitsikamma
Photo credit: YouTube

2. Cape Vidal (KZN)

Experience camping in the exceptionally lovely Isimangaliso Wetland Park. Cape Vidal is a small campsite with only eight sites. This pristine coastal campsite offers wonderful beaches, hikes, and it comes with ablution facilities and electricity plug points.

Outdoor activities to partake in include: snorkelling, fishing, swimming, bird watching, sunbathing, beach walks and even whale watching.

You may also catch sight of hippos, crocodiles, elephants, buffalo, loggerhead and leatherback turtles, frolicking dolphins and perhaps even some whales too.

3. Gariep Dam (Orange River)

Gariep Dam Campsite, which lies midway between Cape Town and Johannesburg, can be found some 200km outside of Bloemfontein. Enjoy camping near South Africa’s largest dam, which fortuitously borders a vast nature reserve, with many roaming zebra and buck species, by the same name.

The campsite, which offers 122 sites in total, includes sixteen accompanying ablution blocks, as well as braai areas and an on-site restaurant. Outdoor activities to experience include: a host of watersports, fishing, and game watching and/or sunset cruises by boat.

stoney ridge
Photo credit: Izak van Niekerk

4. Stoney Ridge (KZN)

Located in the Natal Midlands, among some 6000 acres of natural beauty on a private game farm, you will find the Stoney Ridge Campsite. It lies near the Bloukrans River and, aside from the obvious bird and game watching one can enjoy, there are also great 4×4 trails to try too. The campsite offers ablution facilities, and there is a restaurant on the premises as well.

5. Mazhou Campsite (Limpopo)

Found within the Mapungubwe National Park – a World Heritage Site – this campsite is small and exclusive, offering just ten peaceful campsites for camping enjoyment. Head for a sunset/night drive or explore the park via a guided heritage walks, which will even take you to a graveyard up on the Mapungubwe Hill.

Campsite facilities include: ablutions, power points (at each of the ten sites) and a communal kitchen.

6. Sterland Caravan Park and Campsite (Northern Cape)

Found in the star gazing capital of South Africa (and indeed, possibly in the southern hemisphere in general…), Sutherland, this campsite really will allow you to camp under a sky full of stars, after a long evening around a roaring campfire. Located just out of town, the campsite has seven stands tucked into tidy, 2m Muisbos enclosures.

Facilities include an ablution block (with a washing area and warm showers), with electricity at each individual stand. Enjoy relaxing, braaing and watching the stars, and don’t forget to visit the SALT Observatory up on the hill during the day or perhaps even for some pre-arranged, nightly stargazing.

Karoo
Photo credit: karoospace.co.za

7. Yellowwood Forest Campsite (Eastern Cape)

Found alongside the Inchara River’s banks, a mere 1km away from the beautiful Morgan Bay beach, this campsite is one for the bird lovers and nature fanatics out there. Enjoy relaxing near or swimming in the river, identifying birds, heading to the beach, relaxing in the tea garden, where children can experience the fun, on-site play area, or snack on light meals and wood-fired pizzas.

Facilities include: ablution blocks (with toilets, showers and hot running water), as well as campsite electricity points.

Each campsite offers a unique experience, be it relaxing alongside a river, pitching your tent within a national park and/or World Heritage Site or lying beneath the brightest stars visible in South Africa, so make sure you check these off your camping to-do list in the future.

Content Created by Speckled Egg Digital Team.

Top Places To Visit In South Africa

Twelve Apostles

South Africa is an ecologically, cultural and historically rich, vibrant country that is filled with hundreds of amazing places to see and visit. We here at AccommoDirect know how difficult it can be to choose not just your next destination, but also the places to go and see while you’re on holiday, which is why we have put together 27 of our favourite South African places to visit on your next getaway! Comment below and tell us your favourite ‘must-see’ South African locations.

Western Cape

Table  Mountain
Table Mountain

 

Table Mountain
If you are visiting Cape Town, it’s hard not to miss the iconic mountain which in November 2011 was named one of the seven wonders of the world.

Cango Caves
Taking a trip to the Oudtshoorn or the Swartberg region? Then the Cango Caves are not to be missed! The caves are a geological wonder and the extensive tour offered is designed to show it off at all it’s best angles!

The Big Tree at Tsitsikamma forest
The tree is estimated to be between 600 and 800 years old. The tours and walks offer an enchanting and relaxing trip to remember.

Eastern Cape

The Iconic Hole in the Wall
The Iconic Hole in the Wall

 

Addo Elephant National Park
Founded in 1931, the Addo Elephant National Park houses more than 600 elephants as well as other wildlife. Being the third largest park in our country, it would be hard not to give it a miss!

Hole in the Wall
Another great natural occurrence, a pilgrimage to this fantastic site is often on to scratch off a nature lovers bucket list. With a fantastic beach to soak in the sun and get wet!

Baviaans Kloof
As of 2004 it was declared a World Heritage site, it’s no wonder due to the vast areas unspoiled by man sporting marvelous land forms, a diverse array of plants and many kinds of wildlife.

Northern Cape

The Big Hole Kimberley
The Big Hole Kimberley


The Big Hole
Between 1871 and 1914, up to 50 000 miners dug up the hole in a rush for diamonds. Today it is a geological marvel and a great tourist site in Kimberley. There’s more than just history to enjoy here!

Augrabies Falls
Derived from the Khoi word “Aukoerebis” which means “great noise”, the sheer size, volume and sound experienced by the falls is a marvel in it’s own.

Namaqualand Flower Route
With almost 4000 different species of plants, every year offers a different configuration in flowers along the route. Come between August and September to witness this bombardment of color and spectacle for yourself!

Gauteng

Cradle of Human Kind
Cradle of Human Kind

 

Lion Park
First opened in 1966 it has since expanded from being a lions-only attraction. Being able to come into contact with the king of the jungle himself and his cubs, there are great memories to take home here!

Gold Reef City
If you are going to Jozi, one thing you can’t miss is this supreme amusement park. Themed around the gold rush that started in the 1880’s, it offers atmosphere amongst fun and relaxation.

Cradle of Humankind
Housing one of the largest collections of human fossils dating as far back as 3.5million years ago, you will be nothing short of fascinated by our existence on this planet and how far we’ve come.

North West Province

Sun City
Sun City

 

The Lesedi Cultural Village
For a spectacle of traditional African culture, you can visit the Lesedi Cultural Village over night with one of the traditional families that reside there. Giving you a great window into the lives of others.

Sun City
Sun City has won many awards and houses incredible accommodation as well as a plethora of activities to choose from. You can escape ordinary life and feel like you’re living in your own lost city!

Hartbeespoort Damn Snake & Animal Park
For a relaxed day amongst beautiful surroundings, you can also see some of South Africa’s greatest snakes as well as animal handling in action. A must visit for someone going to the North West.

Mpumalanga

Gods Window
God's Window

 

God’s Window
Definitely one of the most incredible views in the whole of South Africa, the name is very fitting. On a clear day you can even see as far to the Lebombo mountains on the border of Mozambique.

Kruger National Park
Probably the most popular game reserve in South Africa. You can be sure to witness the big five here as well as South Africa’s most beautiful wildlife. You can’t say you’ve seen Africa’s real side once you’ve come here!

Lowveld National Botanical Garden
Remaining green through out the year due to heavy rainfall, you are sure to witness lush plants and over 2000 different species of flora. This is one sure way to reconnect with nature!

Kwazulu Natal

Howick Falls
Howick Falls

 

Drakensberg
It only makes sense to visit the tallest mountain in South Africa while you’re in Kwazulu-Natal. With a plethora of activities to choose from, your visit will be anything but dull.

KZN Battlefields
Don’t be fooled by the picturesque landscape as the history involves the bitter conflict between Britain and South Africa. You can dive back into our past and enjoy some of the history that has built our country today.

Howick Falls
A principal tourist attraction of Kwazulu-Natal, it is a must see, not only for the luscious scenery and majestic waterfall, but the history that surrounds.

Limpopo

Sunland Baobab
Sunland Baobab

 

Warm Baths Bela Bela
Bela Bela was built around the natural hot springs in the area, giving rise to the resorts and natural baths you can enjoy.

Alpha Omega Cave
What makes this cave different, is that it’s man made and basically an entire art piece. Inspired by the holy spirit there is much to enjoy and be observed by the tours that run here.

Sunland Baobab
This popular tourist attraction is well deserved as a unique and magnificent artifact of nature. Due to hollowing in the tree dating as far back as 1650AD, there has been a pub and wine cellar established in the tree for your enjoyment.

Free State

Tiger Canyons
Tiger Canyons

 

Oliewenhuis Art Museum
With a large array of historical and contemporary art pieces, you can enjoy a casual visit to soak in the artworks and relax. A must visit for those in the Free State!

Tiger Canyons
As an attempt to introduce a self sustaining tiger population out of Asia. This offers a unique outlook on nature outside our beautiful country, as well as personal walks with the Tigers which is sure to be something magical!

Anglo Boer War Museums
Believed to be the only one of it’s kind, it offers a peek into a unique part of South Africa’s history with very knowledgeable staff who are sure to tell you all you want to know about the Angle Boer War as well as where to find the battlefields.

5 Most Romantic Places In South Africa

With Valentine’s Day practically upon us, we couldn’t help but think of the most romantic destinations in our gorgeous country. We came up with 5 places that are not only offer gorgeous scenery and views, but are also best enjoyed when you’re with someone special!

                                                Kruger National Park

Get away from the Hollywood cliches for one of the most authentic African experiences. At Kruger National Park you and your partner could find a myriad of activities from safari drives, to elephant riding, helicopter flights and simple walking trails. Apart from witnessing the legendary beasts our country has to offer, there is literally nothing stopping you from keeping the love wild!

                                     Blyde River Canyon Nature Reserve

For those admirers of the sheer beauty and looking for incredible scenery, Blyde River Canyon Nature Reserve is the place to be. By making it the setting of your romantic adventure, whatever it is you choose to do will be accompanied by the magic of nature. Apart from the various activities like hiking trails and helicopter flights you could visit the renowned God’s Window for the most sought after views in South Africa. By all means the perfect time to snap that photo or sneak that kiss!

                                                     Hartbeespoort Dam

Get closer to water for a more relaxed and quiet getaway with your partner. Sit back and bask in the moment with a relaxed boat ride, or surrender to beautiful views in the cable car. With a large variety of options from guest houses, hotels and spas – You can find exactly what you looking for. With a little something for everyone, it’s no wonder Hartbeespoort Dam is one of the most popular holiday destinations in South Africa!

Paternoster

What could be more romantic than an old fishing village on the West Coast? Take an atmospheric trip to Paternoster with that someone special and make the most of the coastal surrounds and activities. Apart from it’s obvious charm, it is also known for it’s warm locals who will make sure the vibe on your trip is never spoiled. Take a walk on the beach and enjoy a sunset together or go kayaking, there’s even a Nature Reserve close by if you seeking a stroll through nature. Paternoster is surely something not to miss!

 

                                                               Cape Town

How could we not include Cape Town on our list? With a plethora of variety in anything you can imagine, the Mother City has it all. From stunning beaches to the iconic mountains and buzzing city life, you won’t be disappointed. Have a picnic in the Kirstenbosch Gardens, then perhaps a drink or two on Rohdes Memorial as you watch the moon come up and top it off with a romantic dinner in the city. Cape Town is ready for you to explore!

Top 5 South African Travel Tips


The first month of 2015 has nearly come and gone, and we have decided it is about time we shared our top 5 travel tips for travelling around South Africa in 2015! So here’s our list, tailored to our beautiful country, to make your getaway a smooth and enjoyable one!

1. Vehicle Safety

Crime can happen to anyone, and when you’re on holiday it’s the one thing you don’t want happening to you, especially if you’re unprepared. If you’re travelling by car, any items you decide to leave inside should be stashed away to avoid smash and grabs. Never leave any important items such as your ID or passport in the car as it’s the one thing you don’t want to lose on your special trip!

2. Tight on Budget? Get out to Nature!

If you’re saving for that new car or piece of furniture you’ve always wanted, yet you still want to spoil yourself to a well deserved holiday? You live in South Africa! There are plenty of affordable lodges, guest houses, B&Bs,  and camping sites to choose from. It’s affordable and probably the best way to experience the beautiful country you live in!

3. Respect and attitude

South Africa comes with many different languages, cultures and religions. Whether it’s a guide, the hotel concierge, or simply someone you meet at a bar; it always pays to be mindful. You don’t want your holiday turning sour because of simple sensitivity and respect to others. Besides you never know what gem’s your taxi driver would want to show their new friend!

 

5. Plan and Enquire

It always pays to be prepared and to do your homework! That’s why you’re here reading this right? Always do some research on the area you’re visiting and the best possible spots to plan your trip around. Double checking accommodation by phoning and making sure you have everything you need to get the most out of your holiday.

 

5. Enjoy and relax!

Probably the most important thing to know for your trip. Relax, breathe and enjoy your adventure! Whether you’re on your own, with that special someone or family, this is what life is about. Be in the moment, be present and enjoy it! This life is yours and own it, leave work and your troubles behind. It will all be there as you left it when you get back, so no need wasting precious time enjoying life over it.

Top 5 NYE Parties Around South Africa

With this year coming to a close, a lot of us are still scrambling to make plans on what to do this New Years. With so many options and beautiful locations to choose from, we cut through the noise to find you the best places to smash into 2015 from all over South Africa…and they won’t disappoint!

Cape Town

If you’re spending your holiday in Cape Town this festive season, and looking for something slightly closer to nature (and not so littered with people), we suggest the New Years Eve Concert at Kirstenbosch. Picnic under the stars while famed SA artists Arno Carstens and Mango Groove are playing you into the New Year.

 

If you’re looking for more of a grand urban party, Nu World Eve: Time Travellers’ ball is for you! Hosted by Vaudeville Cape Town, it offers an atmospheric Bohemian feeling as well as various artists and DJ’s to keep your feet stomping well into the night.

 

St Francis Bay

If you find yourself in St Francis Bay on New Years, you have to check out The Ruins 5fm New Years Eve Concert. Now in it’s 13th year, and with some of our great current local acts such as Zebra & Giraffe, Niskerone, Haezer and The Kiffness playing, it’s set to be an awesome party.

 

Karoo

Experience the Karoo in a little town called Nieu Bethesda and find yourself at the New Years Festival of Lights. Hosted at the Bethesda Art Center, you’ll be able to craft your own lanterns and parade around with other locals and visitors for a truly atmospheric and special intimate New Years.

 

Johannesburg

If you decide to spend your New Years in Joburg, be sure to check out the New Years Eve masked ball happening at Cantare in Montecasino. You will be treated to a vintage cabaret show and fine dining with competitions running through out the night. Ypi’ll also be able to stroll through the rest of the Montecasino and partake in the other glorious New Years Festivities taking place throughout the night.

 

Drakensberg Mountains

Want to go somewhere a little different this New Years? How about surrounding yourself with the majestic beauty of the Drakensberg mountains? If that’s where you heading, be sure to check out the Smoking Dragon New Years Festival! With a wide host of great artists performing over 3 days, a market and other festivities and the backdrop of one of South Africa’s most incredible views, what more could you want? Oh and did we mention kids under 12 get in free…

 

As always you can find the perfect accommodation for these above places HERE!