South Africa: Cape & Garden Route
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New 2017 Itinerary
Difficulty is measured on many factors such as distance, ascent/descent, terrain, weather and more. There's no magic formula, but from our experience we use yellow for easy, orange for medium and red for hard. Challenger holidays require a high level of fitness and stamina.
One of the world’s most spectacular settings at the tip of Africa, the extraordinary landscapes of the Cape and the Garden Route offer a wonderful region for walking with mountain and ocean views, wildlife, history and culture.
Stay four nights in Cape Town, including a walk on Table Mountain and a visit to Robben island, then head into the scenic countryside of the Swartberg and down to the coastal Garden Route before finishing with a classic African game experience.
- Walks on spectacular Table Mountain for probably the world’s finest city and harbour views
- Different sides of Cape Town – Kirstenbosch botanical gardens, Robben Island, the city
- Mediterranean climate ideal for walks in beautiful settings
- Wonderful hotels, guesthouses and lodges with local character and excellent standards
- Delicious South African food and hospitality, including a traditional country braai, a picnic at the botanical gardens, and wine tasting
- Walk on the Cape of Good Hope, with its soaring cliffs and unusual wildlife
- Elephants, giraffes, big cats and other African wildlife at the Kareiga Game Lodge
- 10 nights’ accommodation in en-suite rooms (12 nights in 2017)
- Full Board from lunch on day 2 to breakfast on departure
- A full programme of guided walks led by a local tour director and local guides
- All sightseeing and entrance fees
- Travel by air-conditioned coach/minivan
The hotels on this tour are themselves a highlight of the holiday - a selection of 3 & 4-star hotels and lodges chosen for their excellent locations, character and standards of luxury and service. The hotels serve some of the best South African cuisine. We will also take meals in local restaurants, which is another highlight of the holiday.
In Cape Town we stay at the Sun Square Hotel (4 nights) with a great central location close to the foot of Table Mountain and a short walk to Company Gardens and the city.
At Montagu, our accommodation is at the The Montagu Country Hotel,(2 nts). The rooms are comfortable, spacious ensuites and there's a swimming pool for use too. October/November tours will stay at the Galenia Estate.
In Wilderness, we stop at the Wilderness Hotel Resort & Spa (2 nts), one of the Garden Route's oldest and best loved hotels, rooms will have views of the gardens, or mountains, or lagoon. 9 minutes walk to the beach, the hotel also offers swimming pools, tennis courts.
On the Garden Route coast we stay at Tsitsikamma Village Inn (2 nts) where individual cottages, styled in the fashion of a colonial Cape village, surround village green like, beautifully kept gardens.
The Kariega Lodge (2 nts) is a traditional style African safari lodge located in the Kariega Game Reserve, an area of rolling hills and small settler towns by the Bushmans River. It has an excellent team of game guides offering game drives and walks in possibly the best malaria-free ‘big five’ game viewing area in Africa.
On occasion we may need to change the accommodation listed above. If this happens, your replacement accommodation will be of the equivalent standard or higher. In the rare instance this is not possible, we will contact you in advance.
Most walks are part day between 2-6 miles (3.25-9.5km) on undulating terrain. On Table Mountain choose either a harder walk with an ascent of approx. 2,000 feet (600m) or the cable car to the top and a walk along the summit.
Days 1-5: Cape Town
After an overnight flight, arrive in Cape Town for our 4-night stay. There's an afternoon visit to Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens with picnic lunch on the lawns. The next morning we'll take a walking tour of the city, including the castle and Company Gardens, followed by afternoon visit to the infamous Robben Island.
We include a full day walk on Table Mountain for extraordinary views of the Cape. We can take a long, harder climb to the summit or take the cable car to the top for a leisurely walk along the plateau.
On our final day here we'll travel out of the city and stop to see the African penguin colony at Boulders Beach. Continue for walks at the Cape Point Nature Reserve amid the soaring cliffs of the Cape of Good Hope where the Indian and Atlantic oceans meet.
Days 6-7: Winelands & Montague
Travel into the beautiful Cape winelands and take a walk among the vineyards, with wine tasting included. After visiting the French influenced town of Franschoek we continue to the lovely country town of Montague for 2 nights.
Full day hiking in the Cogmanskloof Mountains in the Montague area.
Days 8-9: To Wilderness
Journey through the port wine area to Wilderness (2 nts). We'll stop for a port tasting and visit an Ostrich farm. The next day, paddle up the Touw river, followed by a Forest Walk with picnic lunch.
Day 10: Tsitsikamma
Travel towards the spectacular Knysna lagoon. Take a boat trip to Featherbed Nature Reserve for a specialist guided walk on this protected island. Continue to Tsitsikamma for 2 nights.
Here we'll enjoy a full day of walking in the heart of the Garden Route, with dramatic coastal scenery on the edge of the Indian Ocean. A boat trip leads to the famous suspension bridge at the Storms River mouth.
Days 12-13: Kariega Game Reserve
Journey inland to Kariega for 2 nights, set high above the river in attractive African wilderness. Take an afternoon game drive in comfortable open jeeps searching for lions and other big cats, giraffe, zebra, elephant and many other species of African game and bird life.
A sunrise game drive gives us excellent chances to see the wildlife. Later take a bush walk in the company of a wildlife
guide, in order to closely observe the flora and fauna, and an optional trip to the beaches of nearby Kenton-on-Sea.
Days 14-15: Port Elizabeth & return flight
Transfer to Port Elizabeth for our return flight to London via Johannesburg.
Extend your stay
Extend your travels in South Africa and combine this itinerary with our Drakensberg & Zululand holiday. Call our reservations team for more information and prices.
A full passport valid for at least one month after departing South Africa is required, with at least 2 blank pages for entry stamps.
Holders of EU passports and nationals of the USA, Canada and Australia can stay in South Africa for up to 3 months without a visa. Other nationals should check with their nearest South African embassy for details of entry requirements.
Before booking, you should check with your doctor to see if any health precautions are needed. The following websites provide a wealth of information on travelling and health: www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk www.traveldoctor.co.uk
Vaccines: Diphtheria, Hepatitis A & Tetanus vaccinations are recommended. Typhoid, rabies and hepatitis B vaccines are sometimes recommended too.
South Africa enjoys an enviable climate, the main factors influencing the weather being the altitude and its closeness to the sea. Cape Town and the Garden Route share a Mediterranean type climate with warm summers and mild winters. Summer is from late September to March and usually offers good conditions for walking.
The South African currency is the rand. Banks are open Monday to Friday 9am to 3.30pm and Saturdays 9am to 11am and are the most convenient place for exchanging money. Credit cards are also a convenient way of obtaining money and Visa and Mastercard are all widely recognised. Cash machines are found in most major towns and cities.
Tips are included on this holiday.
For flight information please see the Dates and Prices tab.
Duane is a tour leader with over 20 years of experience. Originally from South Africa, Duane has travelled extensively all over Southern Africa including Namibia, Botswana, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Swaziland and Lesotho. Duane and his family live in lovely Cape Town, truly one of the world's most beautiful cities.
You would be hard pressed to find a more competent, enthusiastic, dependable and knowledgeable tour leader than Duane. He’s really excited to be leading for HF Holidays this season.
Duane will be leading our 22 April 2017 Cape & Garden Route departure.
Trevor, our local South African leader, lives in Durban and leads most of our South African holidays, both The Cape & Garden Route, and Drakensberg & Zululand.
He has been involved in tourism for over 16 years, initially as a tour operator and for the last ten years as a full time tourist guide. Trevor has a strong passion for history, culture, hiking and the great outdoors, all of which South Africa has in abundance.
Leading our HF Holidays’ groups on their holidays in South Africa allows Trevor the opportunity to share his deep warmth and knowledge of the land and its people. A wicked and sometimes dry sense of humour is utilised at opportune moments to convey this message!
For him, the most endearing legacy of one of our holidays is to witness the group bonding and to see strong friendships being nurtured and forged. To be an integral part of this process he feels is very special indeed.
Trevor’s feedback from our groups is consistently, excellent, excellent, excellent. Here are just a few examples of what our guests say about him:
“Trevor was one of the best HF leaders I have experienced. His knowledge/enthusiasm and care was second to none. He must be one of your best ambassadors”
“Trevor is exceptional in all respects”
“Trevor made a huge contribution to the whole group’s enjoyment of the holiday”
Trevor is leading 11 November 2017 Cape & Garden Route tours, and 21 September 2017, 26 October 2017 Drakensberg & Zululand tours
Hailing from a family with a keen conservation and wildlife interest, Jamie’s compelling curiosity and inquisitive nature was continuously stirred and stimulated as a young boy and he opted to follow a path in Nature Conservation.
It only seemed fitting to complete his practical year living in the Kruger National Park. To broaden his horizons and gain some ‘worldly experience’, he donned his backpack and travelled through Europe and North Africa for a year.
He held a position as a field guide at Shamwari Private Game Reserve in the Eastern Cape and has led overland expeditions through Southern Africa, for several years.
Jamie is now lucky enough to live back in Cape Town where he is a private guide and also enjoys regular trips to the pristine wildlife areas of South Africa, Botswana and Namibia.
Jamie will be leading 07 September 2017, 12 October 2017 Cape & Garden Route tours.
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Dates & Prices
We're sorry, there are no dates available for this holiday at the moment. Please check out our other tours and breaks or call our team on 0345 470 8558 to be notified of new dates as soon as they become available.
Prices are per person
- Single room: £290 (2017)
- Non-member associate fee: £10 per person