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Lady Gaza
Nov 20, 2008



In February my wife and I are spending a couple of weeks in Southern Africa. The first week is sorted (Sabi Sands and Victoria Falls), but we currently have 7 nights we need to work out how to split between Cape Town and the Garden Route - we are arriving in Cape Town mid-afternoon on the Sunday and then need to fly out from Port Elizabeth the following Sunday mid-morning.

Kind of unsure where to stay along the Garden Route and how long for - since we have only a few days I read that flying to George will save us time. We like landscapes, nature, the outdoors, etc. so places like the Wilderness national park, Knysna forests, and then Nature's Valley and Storm's River have caught my eye. We'll have spent a number of days on safari prior to this so don't need to go to a game reserve, though any animals you don't typically spot on safari would be good to see. Not so bothered about spending time sitting on the beach. Thinking of the following itineray:

Sunday - arrive mid-afternoon, V&A waterfront or around
Monday - Table mountin and botanical gardens
Tuesday - Cape penninsula
Wednesday - Fly to George early morning, pick up rental car, see Wilderness national park, spend night in Wilderness
Thursday - drive to Knysna and forests, night in Knysna
Friday - use Knysna as a base, maybe drive to near Plet and to the Robberg Point walk, and other stuff in Knysna, night in Knysna
Saturday - drive to Nature's Valley/Storm's River (undecided yet), one night there
Sunday - drive to PE airport, fly out

How does that look? Not sure if we have enough time in each place - from what I can read online it's only a couple of hours drive at most between those places on the Garden Route, which should give enough time for stopping on the way, spending a good few hours in the parks/forests/etc. However, this is just an intitial plan - if it's too packed and it's better to pick a couple of places and spend 2 nights in each, I am happy to cut things down. I feel like I am trying to cram too much in.

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Kasumeat
Nov 18, 2004


I think you're trying to do way too much in too little time. I spent 2 weeks just in and around Cape Town last year and it wasn't enough. Mind you, sounds like I have a little more interest in the culture scene than you, but I still think you'll be happier deciding to devote a week entirely to Cape Town and surrounds—there are countess day trips in nature worth doing—OR the garden route.

- You can take the funicular up Table Mountain, but I highly recommend hiking up instead
- The Lion's Head hike is also worth doing
- VA waterfront is okay but I think Camps Bay is nicer if you don't have time for both
- There is a huge and exciting wine scene in ZA (that most Americans are not exposed to at all), it's worth checking out if you're at all into wine, ask if you want more details
- The stunning drive from Cape Town to Hermanus is 100% mandatory, with a stop at Stony Point to see the Penguins
- Cape Town has a great food scene, don't miss it

Saladman
Jan 12, 2010


Lady Gaza posted:

In February my wife and I are spending a couple of weeks in Southern Africa. The first week is sorted (Sabi Sands and Victoria Falls), but we currently have 7 nights we need to work out how to split between Cape Town and the Garden Route - we are arriving in Cape Town mid-afternoon on the Sunday and then need to fly out from Port Elizabeth the following Sunday mid-morning.

Kind of unsure where to stay along the Garden Route and how long for - since we have only a few days I read that flying to George will save us time. We like landscapes, nature, the outdoors, etc. so places like the Wilderness national park, Knysna forests, and then Nature's Valley and Storm's River have caught my eye. We'll have spent a number of days on safari prior to this so don't need to go to a game reserve, though any animals you don't typically spot on safari would be good to see. Not so bothered about spending time sitting on the beach. Thinking of the following itineray:

Sunday - arrive mid-afternoon, V&A waterfront or around
Monday - Table mountin and botanical gardens
Tuesday - Cape penninsula
Wednesday - Fly to George early morning, pick up rental car, see Wilderness national park, spend night in Wilderness
Thursday - drive to Knysna and forests, night in Knysna
Friday - use Knysna as a base, maybe drive to near Plet and to the Robberg Point walk, and other stuff in Knysna, night in Knysna
Saturday - drive to Nature's Valley/Storm's River (undecided yet), one night there
Sunday - drive to PE airport, fly out

You might as well drive to George? It's about 5 hours and you'll want a car anyway for Cape Peninsula, so renting a car for two days, then flying to George and renting another car, sounds like a hassle and flying won't save all that much time vs. driving. Plus if you're into Geography Nerding you could go to Cape Agulhas on Tuesday night and break up that drive.

Also make sure to check for fire news while you're on the spot, as February is both dry season and hot season, and right now for instance George is on fire, e.g. https://scontent-amt2-1.xx.fbcdn.ne...ntent-amt2-1.xx from today. I just googled it since there's like, always a huge fire somewhere in Cape Province, it was a pretty safe bet that I'd find one raging at the moment. E: that link sucks, here's the FB group with the photos: https://www.facebook.com/KnysnaFire..._rs&_rdc=1&_rdr

Never been to George-Port Elizabeth area so can't really give any specific suggestions. You're missing all of the wine country around Cape Town but maybe you've already been or maybe you want to do something less Stereotypical First Visit to Cape Province.

Saladman fucked around with this message at Oct 29, 2018 around 18:58

Lady Gaza
Nov 20, 2008



Thanks both. My wife doesn’t drink and I’m not massively bothered by visiting wineries so don’t mind missing that - plus I’d be driving so couldn’t really drink.

There seems to be a lot to do around Plet; some friends recommended national parks for walking and wildlife within a short drive so we’ll likely stay round there for a few days.

Captain Hotbutt
Aug 18, 2014

Hello, I'd like to humiliate some hussies and I'm in a hurry.


If you can make it, try going to De Grendel Restaurant.

I'm on my last day of a South Africa tour with my family, and even though it was earlier in our trip, it's stuck out as being the best restaurant we ate at the whole time we were here - by a far margin. Even if you don't drink, the food is totally worth all the wine talk you'd hear while there.

The views and the estate itself are totally spectacular. Try to get there around sunset. It's nuts.

About a 30-40 minute drive outside Cape Town. Reservation is a must if you decide to go.

Lady Gaza
Nov 20, 2008



An update if anyone is interested. We decided to not go to Victoria Falls and are just staying in South Africa. After 4 days at Sabi Sands we have 4 days in Cape Town, so we might go to the winelands if we have time. Then we're going to take our time driving to Brenton-on-Sea (thinking via R62) - any ideas for stops on the way would be good (we're going to do it on one day, leaving early in the morning). We've got a couple of nights there so will go to the forests and the heads, then 4 days in Plett as a base to explore Tsitsikamma.

So overall a more relaxed trip than we had previously planned, which I think will be better. Also we booked De Grendel in Cape Town on a Friday night for sunset; thanks for the tip!

Residency Evil
Jul 28, 2003

4/5 godo BRAINS


Does anyone have a good guide to setting up a 10-14 day trip to South Africa? My wife and I want to do something this fall (as a delayed honeymoon). We have friends who went through andBeyond travel and had an awesome experience, but I've typically done things on my own. Before we do something similar, is it feasible to do this on my own (and have an equally good time)? Is 10-14 days enough time to spend a few days in/around Cape Town and do a safari in Kruger while traveling from the east coast?

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Lady Gaza
Nov 20, 2008



Residency Evil posted:

Does anyone have a good guide to setting up a 10-14 day trip to South Africa? My wife and I want to do something this fall (as a delayed honeymoon). We have friends who went through andBeyond travel and had an awesome experience, but I've typically done things on my own. Before we do something similar, is it feasible to do this on my own (and have an equally good time)? Is 10-14 days enough time to spend a few days in/around Cape Town and do a safari in Kruger while traveling from the east coast?

Yes you can definitely do it on your own, it just depends on how much effort you want to spend working out how long to spend in each place and where about to stay, etc. My wife and I had two weeks in SA and we just booked our own hotels and flights (we landed in JNB, flew to Greater Kruger for a few days and from there flew to Cape Town). Hired a car in Cape Town. It took a bit of organisation but I like doing that myself. SA is a modern developed country for the most part so it’s easy enough to book things.

If you have 10 days I would perhaps limit yourself to safari and Cape Town area. In 2 weeks my wife and I also did a few days on the garden route and felt a little rushed, so if you’re travelling from east coast and only have 10 days don’t overdo it.

If you want a more upmarket safari experience try Sabi Sands rather than a Kruger self drive - we spent 4 nights in a lodge and it was honestly one of the best things we’ve ever done. The Elephant Plains lodge was really great despite being one of the cheaper ones in the area, I’d highly recommend them. Literally 2 hours from arriving we saw a leopard drag a kill into a tree just a few feet in front of us. I follow them on Instagram now and a bunch of leopards have cubs, plus there are male lions moving into the local pride, which is quite exciting. Most people we met at the lodge did 2 or 3 nights, though I would suggest 3 at a minimum so as to give yourself plenty of time to see different animals.

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