East and West Capes: The best of Oceans and Deserts
Coastal highways, safaris at Addo Elephant Natioal Park, the "Little Karoo," Ostrich shows, mountain passes, and Africa's Southern most point; we didn't leave anything out on this tour of South Africa's Garden Route. You will ride quality BMW motorcycles on open, challenging roads, over mountain passes, through both semi desert and fertile coastal regions in a perfect climate for biking. We will tour Cape Town and the Peninsula as well as explore the "Karoo," along the coast where wale sightings a frequent, the "7 Passes Route," the semi arid deserts where Ostritches thrive, Safaris to spot the "Big 5" while enjoying a few rest days for adventures of your choice.
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Cape Town Orientation
Arrive at Cape Town Airport early am where SAMT meets guests and conveys to your Cape Town hotel. We suggest you rest, unwind, swim in the pool or catch up on sleep until 2 PM when we pick you up in a mini bus, take you to our base, issue the bikes and guide you on an 'orientation' tour of Cape Town. This ends at 5pm back at your hotel. Overnight at the Hampshire House Bed & Breakfast or Dongola House. Accommodations listed are our preferred places of lodging, however, these are subject to change if they are full during tour dates.
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Africa's Southern Most Point
We leave the hotel at 9.30am and head for the exhilarating and spectacular drive round False Bay via Gordons Bay, Betty's Bay and on to the historic coastal resort of Hermanus where we lunch. After lunch the route continues through rolling wheat fields with long sweeping bends - ideal bike country. Finally we arrive at Cape L'Agulhas, and there visit the Southern most point of Africa. Our accommodation for the night is just opposite the Southern most harbour in Africa at the Mermaid Guest House in Struisbaai. Overnight at Mermaid Guest House, Struisbaai near Cape L'Agulhas.
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The Little Karoo
Again traversing the rolling wheat lands with magnificent views of rich farming country we head for the picturesque town of Swellinghdam and then leave the coastal lowlands via the rugged Tradouw Pass which crosses the Langeberg range of mountains. Immediately after the pass we are in the arid "Little Karoo" where ostriches and tobacco farming are the main occupations. Passing through the area's main town of Oudtshoorn we leave the Little Karoo via the huge Outeniqua pass which brings us back to the coastal plain and on to the "Garden Route" . Our overnight destination, Knysna surrounds as tranquil lagoon which empties into the Indian Ocean through the turbulent waters of the "Heads". Overnight at Inyathi Guest Lodge.
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The Coast to African "Bushvelt" Country
Departing Knysna we continue along the coast past the renowned surfing beaches of Plettenberg Bay, through the luxuriant indigenous Tsitsikama forest, past the world's highest bungee jump and via minor roads where ever possible to Uitenhage. We now enter true African "bushvelt" type country and vegetation - rolling hills, thorn bushes and huge vistas. Overnight at Kroenhoff Guest House, Kirkwood (bordering the Addo National Elephant Park) which has an excellent restaurant.View Garden Route Tour - Day 4 of 12 in a larger map
Game Drive in Addo Elephant National Park
During the morning just relax round the swimming pool. After lunch we drive about 30 kilometres to the main entrance of the Ado national Elephant Park and there join the 3pm game drive, hopefully sighting the "Big Five" . Return to Kirkwood and the Kroenhoff Guest House.
Valley of Desolation
Heading farther inland we traverse the Olifantskop Pass and spend the entire day on magnificent roads with hardly any traffic in remote African bush type country. We pass through the frontier towns of Cookhouse and Cradock before crossing the Sneeuberg (Snow Mountain) range via the Wapadsberg and Nauderberg passes and finally descend to the historic town of Graaf-Reinet. Before or after dinner (depending on the time of year) we take a short trip to the Valley of Desolation to watch a truly magnificent sun set of the Great Karoo. Overnight at the Villa Reinet Guest Lodge, Graaf-Reinet.
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The World's Ostritch Capitol
Today brings an entirely new sensation - passing through the endless flat plains of the Karoo. At times it is as if one is biking across the sea, vistas are so enormous, the horizon so vast and far away. Distant mountain ranges subtly change colour and only an occasional car or truck is encountered. WE lunch in the little hamlet of Willowmore (there being no where else to stop !) and finally reach Oudtshoorn, the ostrich capital of the world. Overnight at Montana Guest Farm, Oudtshoorn.
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Choose and Adventure to fit your personality
A 'rest' day. Either visit the world famous Cango Caves, an ostrich show farm, the Wild Life Ranch (cheetahs, lion, tigers, crocodiles and alligators), explore locally on your bike or just laze round the pool.
You can also do the huge, spectacular and famous Swartberg Pass, a gravel road, only to be attempted when dry. Overnight at Montana Guest Farm, Oudtshoorn.
We recross the Little Karoo , again through wild and rugged country passing through Calitzdorp, Ladysmith and Barrydale arriving back in the Western Cape at Montague, an attractive spa town with natural hot water springs hidden in a mountain cleft. On leaving Montague we pass some of the most contorted and folded mountain strata you will ever see and finally enter the fertile fruit growing area of Robertson. Our guest house for the night is on a long established wine farm in the gracious old homestead. Overnight at Nuy Valley Guest House, near Robertson.
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Today we do the "7 Passes Route", some fast and perfectly engineered, some tortuously twisting, others over 4000' high. During the day we circle the Hex River mountains (where we have a ski club !), always on good tar roads. Overnight at Nuy Valley Guest House, near Robertson.
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Cape Peninsula and Penguins
Return to Cape Town via Du Toits Kloof pass and the main N1 road. Proceeding on from Cape Town we tour the picturesque Cape Peninsular with the Atlantic Ocean on the one side and Indian Ocean on the other. Visit the a penguin colony at Simonstown and lunch at Cape Point ( don't let the baboons steal it!) Overnight in Cape Town.
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In the morning we suggest you either visit the famous shopping area at the Waterfront or ascend Table Mountain by cable car. In the afternoon return the bikes and we bus you to the airport [The entire tour is about 3000 kilometers or 1875 miles].
Included in the price:
- Motorcycle rental for 12 days
- Bed & breakfast for 11 nights
- Airport transfers
- Guide on a bike where specified
Not included in the price:
- Lunch & dinner (other than where mentioned)
- Park entry & road tolls