Famous for its astonishing diversity, South Africa guarantees incredible holidays. On this leisurely 16 day self drive itinerary you will travel to wonderful destinations to experience the winelands, whales and wildlife, three of the country's outstanding qualities. A self drive along the Garden Route, one of the world's best drives, is a wonderful way to experience travel through South Africa and see all the stunning scenery. Along the way you will be staying in an array of world class accommodation all in stunning locations.
After a couple of days exploring Cape Town, your first stop on your exciting road trip will be the winelands of Drakenstein Valley with a stay in the peaceful tranquil haven of Babylonstoren, a farm house filled with history. From here you will head to Hermanus where you days will be filled with whale watching (July - November), spotting these majestic elegant animals from the coast or on a boat trip, before following the Garden Route to Knysna. Sitting on the edge of a lagoon which meets the rolling sea between the sandstone cliffs on the Knysna Heads, Knysna is a filled with nature creating a wonderful natural playground.
The last stop on your trip is the wildlife of Pumba Private Game Reserve. Nestled in the heart of malaria free Eastern Cape, Pumba Private Game Reserve offers a supreme African safari experience across a bush filled with wildlife including elephant, leopard, giraffe, rhino and buffalo. An incredible wildlife spot is the endangered and majestic white lion, a sighting of which will take your breath away.
Day 1 Depart early evening from London Heathrow on an overnight flight to Cape Town via Johannesburg.
Day 2 Arriving early morning, collect your hire care and drive to the Steenberg Hotel for your three night stay, breakfast included. Cape Town’s oldest wine farm offers friendly hospitality, outstanding cuisine, an indulgent spa and luxurious rooms. The location is not only stunning, resting in the shadows of the Table Mountain range, but also convenient; just a quick 20 minute drive away from the centre of Cape Town. The restaurant’s, Catharina’s at Steenbrg, menu serves contemporary comfort food, delicious dishes of fresh produce cooked simply and presented beautifully. A dinner here on your first night is a wonderful start to your holiday and introduction to Cape Town.
Day 3 With so much on offer you will find it easy to fill your two full days in Cape Town with exciting activities and excursions whether you want to be active, experience the nature or have your first encounter with some of South Africa’s wildlife. For breath-taking views journey across the Chapman’s Peak Drive, winding between Noordhoek and Hout Bay along the Atlantic Coast, to the Cape Peninsula Nature Reserve where the Atlantic and Indian Oceans meet, stopping to marvel at the penguin colony on Boulders Beach. Head up Table Mountain in either a rotating cable car or by foot up the pathways, before heading down to browse the shops, museums and cafés the vibrant city centre has to offer. Take a boat trip across to Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela spent 18 years his incarceration imprisoned, or drive to the scenic town of Hout Bay, home to seal colonies, for fresh seafood.
Day 4 There are a variety of tours on offer in Cape Town. For something that is a bit different, try the Eats Tour. This is a guided walking tour through the markets of Cape Town. Here you will have the opportunity of tasting local cuisine and learning more about the culture. For Photographers, there are a number of tours that are guided with a specialist photographer, learn techniques and the use of cameras without having to be an expert yourself!
Day 5 Just a short leisurely drive from Cape Town is the stunning verdant winelands. In the morning drive to the tranquil Babylonstoren for two nights with breakfast included. One of the best preserved werfs (farm yards) with over 300 years of history, Babylonstoren is a stunning Cape Dutch farm. The interiors of the 12 guest cottages and Manor House are chic, clean and modern, lovingly combined with the heritage of the Drakenstein Valley. The one and two bedroom en-suite cottages have marvellous views of either the garden or vineyard with an outside area to enjoy alfresco dining. At the heart of Babylonstoren farm is the garden spread across eight acres with over 300 types of edible plant. Whilst strolling through the glorious garden you will come across clusters dedicated to vegetables, berries, bees, plants, ducks and chickens. The restaurant serves seasonal dishes, the ingredients picked from the garden for a satisfying and delicious farm to plate affair.
Day 6 The whole farm is yours to explore including the swimming pool, a spa, a gym overlooking the garden and the Babylonstoren Shop. Wherever your wanders take you, your time in Babylonstoren is guaranteed to be calm, peaceful and serene.
Day 7 Today leave Babylonstoren for Hermanus and your two night stay at Harbour House with breakfast included. In the heart of the Old Harbour, Harbour House is placed in between the seaside and the bustling centre of the historical town. Whale watching can be enjoyed from the Lookout Terrace over a delicious lunch or a refreshing sundowner. Spend the afternoon casually strolling into the charming town filled with markets, restaurants and cafes.
Day 8 For an exhilarating half day excursion, go diving with great white sharks to come up close and personal with these colossal and magnificent creatures of the sea. However, if you fancy staying dry, whale watching on land or by boat is also a splendid way to spend your last day in Hermanus.
Day 9 After a delicious breakfast, the next part of your road trip will take you along the spectacular Garden Route leading you through the seaside town of Wilderness before heading to Knysna, famous for oysters and magnificent scenery. After a lunch of fresh seafood and a scenic boat cruise, check in at Phantom Forest for three nights with breakfast included. The eco-reserve’s 14 tree houses are placed up high in private woodland above Kynsna’s lagoons, a magnificent place to appreciate the surrounding nature in all its glory. The ingenious and unique glass fronted tree houses perch on stilts in the forest canopy and are connected by wooden raised walkways, creating a brilliant viewing deck to see the array of wildlife from the comfort of your bedroom or deck.
Day 10 Found in the heart of the Garden Route, Knysna is full of natural splendour with giant yellow wood and stinkwood trees running down to a coastline of cliffs and coves harbouring glorious beaches. Completely immerse yourself in this wonderful nature; trek through the forests, relax on the beaches and fly over the dense forest canopy on the aerial runway. Take a dolphin and whale boat trip around the bay, combining it with a delightful walk on the Robberg Peninsula or a boat trip up the Keurbooms River with a picnic lunch. For the truly adventurous there is the world’s highest bungee jump and opportunities to sky dive; the most exhilarating way to take in the incredible views.
Day 11 Well known for its Oysters, go on a sunset cruise on the Knysna Lagoon, taste an oyster or six with a lovely glass of local Sparkling wine. The Markets in Knysna are also well known, try out some Chocolate tasting and browse the local crafts.
Day 12 Passing through Port Elizabeth, drive to Pumba Private Game Reserve for a three night stay inclusive of all meals, local drinks and scheduled morning and afternoon game drives, guided game walks. Pumba Private Game Reserve is an untouched wildlife haven which has achieved gold status for its environmental work. Spend your leisure time relaxing in the...
This trip has no fixed departures but restrictions may apply - check operator website
** If you see this next to a price, a specific price in your currency has not been provided, this is an estimated-only price based on a currency conversion, the price you pay may be different to that shown
Sign up to our weekly Trip Finder email and get a selection of the best trips to feed your Wanderlust