Is hiking up the garden route possible?
The Garden Route is known as one of the most popular and beautiful routes in South Africa. And, if you are visiting Cape Town, doing down the Garden route is something that you should consider.
The one question that people are asking if this is possible to go on hikes on the Garden Route. Hiking trails that might be just day trails or hiking trails that are normally a couple of days. This is the good news. There are a huge variety of hikes that you can do on the Garden Route. This is why you should make sure that you are getting all the necessary information before you decide which route you are going to take. Here is everything that you need to know about the Garden route and some of the hikes that you can do up in the route.
What is the Garden Route?
The Garden Route is a beautiful 300-kilometre (190 miles) stretch of coastline in Cape Town. It extends from Witsand, a coastal town in the Western Cape, to Storms River in the Eastern Cape. Towns/villages that you encounter on the route include Knysna, Plettenberg Bay, Mossel Bay, Little Brak River, Great Brak River, Wilderness, Nature’s Valley and Sedgefield. George is the largest city on the route.
Verdant and ecologically diverse (hence the name), the Garden Route lies between the Indian Ocean and the Outeniqua and Tsitsikamma Mountains. On the scenic south-eastern South African stretch, you encounter mountain passes, lakes, rivers, lagoons and forests. There are also historical buildings and many other attractions. The oceanic climate here is lovely, with warm summers and mild to cool winters.
Indigenous forests on the Garden Route are spectacular. They are made up of Cape fynbos (fine-leaved plants) and temperate forest vegetation, where close to 300 species of bird reside in an assortment of habitats. The forests provide trails for enjoyable Garden Route hiking and ecotourism activities.
Are there really any hiking trails that you can enjoy on the Garden route?
This is one thing that you need to know. There are a huge variety of hiking trails that you can enjoy on the Garden Route. Places like Knysna has a couple of routes alone. There are people that are saying that going on a Garden route tour, will not be the same if you don’t make sure that you are enjoying one of the hiking trails that there are to offer.
The thing is that you should make sure that you know the different destinations on the route to ensure that you know where to look for hiking routes. The more popular the town in the route, the better the hiking trail will be. The more research you are doing, the better the experience you are going to have. There are hundreds of hiking routes along the Garden Route, but these are the top trails that you can consider doing to get the most out of your experience.
These are some of the hiking routes that you can do when you are on the Garden Route. Trails from different lengths and different areas on the route. The more trails you are going to do, the better your experience is going to be.
One of the first trails that you can consider on this route is the Dolphin Trail. This is a popular trail because of the length of the hike.
This is a 2day, 3night trail that is starting at the Storms river mouth. But, one thing that you should know is that this is a luxurious trail. You don’t carry everything you normally would on a two-day trail. The only thing that you are going to carry is your day bag where you are going to have water, food, and other essentials in. Your clothing and food bag will be taken with you to the next cabin. Making this a great experience, without wearing all the gear on your back. You will get delicious food, that is included in the package. This is an experience that you should consider if you are thinking about a 2day hike through the Garden Route.
Cape St. Blaze Trail
The Cape St. Blaze trail is a trail that is in Mossel Bay. This is a 13.5-kilometer walk in each direction. This is a coastal trail with the best possible ocean views. Making this a total of 27 kilometers if you are walking back as well. However, many people are walking in one direction and then take a taxi back.
The great thing about this trail is that you don’t need to pay an entrance fee. Everything is free and you should just take food and water with you.
TV Tower trail
The TV Tower trail is a 5-kilometer trail that is starting at the Outeniqua Nature reserve’s entrance. The nature reserve is just outside George. The trail is taking you up the mountain to view some of the best views over George and the ocean.
Depending on your fitness level, this is a 2 to 3-hour walk to the top of the mountain and back. this is an easy trail, but it is recommended that you should stick to the route. There are markers that will show you the way to make sure that you don’t get lost along the way. This is another, a free route that you can take.
Wilderness Heritage Trail
This is a great hiking trail that you can do when you are looking for an interesting hike. This hike is taking you through the wilderness to the beach. The trail ends at the Kaaimans river mouth. This is about a 7kilometer hike and you can find some interesting plants, and birds along the way.
This is a hike that family and children can take, and it is relatively easy to do. The great thing about this hike is that you don’t need to pay anything to enjoy the hike with family and friends. Making it easier for tourists to enjoy nature without spending extra money on entrance fees.
Different Knysna Forest Walks
In and around Knysna there are three popular hiking trails that you can take. Because of the beautiful scenery, many people like taking these trails. Knysna has the forest, the ocean and other scenery that are beautiful and interesting. And, this is why this is one of the more popular places on the Garden route for hiking. The three trails that we are talking about is the:
- Woodcutters Trail: You can choose between the 3- or 9-kilometer trail.
- Jubilee Creek Forest Walk A 3.6-kilometer trail through the forest.
- Millwood Goldmine route. This is a 5.6-kilometer trail.
There are other trails as well, but according to tourists, these are the top three trails if you want to get the best Knysna experience.
Tips before you are going on any of these garden hiking routes
Before you can go on any of these garden hiking routes, there are a couple of things that you should consider. Especially, if you are taking the free routes. These are some of the things that you should remember:
- You should not go on these hiking trails alone. This can be dangerous and you will always have the possibility to lose your way back home. A group of at least four people is recommended.
- Take water with you. Even, if it isn’t really getting hot on these trails, you are going to get thirsty. Getting water while you are walking is going to be impossible. It is essential that you are always taking water and snacks with you on any hiking trail.
- Make sure that you are telling someone where you are going and which trail you are going to take. If you are getting lost, there is someone that will know where you are.
- The right clothing is important. You need to be able to dress warmer if the weather is changing. And, you need to make sure that you are wearing light-colored clothing. Especially, during the summer time. A raincoat or waterproof jacket is also something that you should have with you. No matter which of these routes you are going to take.
- It is recommended that you are doing research about the hike that you want to take. You should make sure that the trail is marked and that you will get your way back. And, you should make sure that you are going to know if there are any dangers about the trail that you need to know about.
The garden route. Something that every tourist should visit before returning home. There are many things that you can experience and do on the route. But, going on a hike might be the highlight of the trip. Because of how large the garden route is, there is a huge selection for trails that you can take. Some are just a day trip, while other might be even two to three days. You should make sure that you are going to choose the right hiking trail for you. A place that you find interesting and that you want to learn more from. There is nothing better to end a Cape Town holiday by taking one of the garden route hiking trails.