There are many beautiful beaches along the Garden Route,
from Plettenberg Bay to Wilderness, Victoria Bay and beyond.
- Malachite Bird Hide Wilderness
The Malachite Bird Hide is located on the northern shore of the Bo-Langvlei in the Wilderness section of the Garden Route National Park. Bo-Langvlei is one of a series of lakes connected by the Touw River (Eilandvlei, Langvlei and Rondevlei) and hosts a variety of aquatic species. It is an internationally proclaimed Ramsar site.
Major concentrations of Great Crested and Black-necked Grebe are present on Rondevlei and Bo Langvlei. Grey and Purple Heron, Little Egret, African Spoonbill, Little Bittern and Redknobbed Coot are prominent.
- Garden Route Birding
South Africa’s Garden Route offers unique birding opportunities with 30 endemic species in 5 biomes.
The mission of Garden Route Birding is to develop accessibility to birding and provide information to tourists in the Garden Route and Little Karoo.
The Garden Route offers a diverse range of habitats and is home to approximately 300 species of birds, making it an ideal destination for bird-watching in South Africa.
The Cango Caves, Ostriches & Wildlife
- Cango Caves
At the head of the picturesque Cango Valley, 29 kilometres from Oudtshoorn, lies the spectacular underground wonder of the Klein Karoo – the Cango Caves.
Situated in a limestone ridge parallel to the well-known Swartberg Mountains, you will find some of the finest dripstone caverns in the world, with their vast halls and towering formations.
- Cango Wildlife Ranch
For over 28 years our organisation has worked tirelessly for the conservation of cheetah and other endangered species.
We are one of the 5 biggest cheetah centres in the world and have for many years had the highest survival rate of cubs produced globally.
In our 28 years of breeding endangered animals, the Cango Wildlife Ranch has produced more cheetah cubs than that of the entire United States and we have therefore had a dramatic and vital impact on assisting the conservation gene pool of this species.
- Highgate Ostrich Show Farm
Highgate Ostrich Show Farm has been telling the fascinating story of ostriches and ostrich farming in Oudtshoorn for over a hundred years, and its tours have delighted visitors from all over the world. Meet ostriches face to face, learn about ostrich farming, and enjoy everyoneâ’s favourite – ostrich races!
Visiting us is interesting and informative, a great experience and fun for the whole family.
Reserves, Parks & Sanctuaries
- Featherbed Nature Reserve
Featherbed is a privately-owned, registered Nature Reserve and a South African Heritage Site. It is a pristine piece of paradise situated on the Western Head of Knysna and is accessible by ferry only.
There is a daily 4-hour excursion and reservations are essential. It is a wonderful outing for all ages and fitness levels. Good walking shoes are recommended and remember your camera, hats and sunblock in summer and a warm jacket for the ferry trip in winter.
- Goukamma Nature Reserve
Goukamma Nature Reserve and Marine Protected Area, situated on the Garden Route between Sedgefield and Knysna, has a diverse array of fascinating habitats and an abundance of smaller wildlife, birds and fish.
The reserve covers 2 500 hectares of dense coastal forest, including milkwood, yellowwood and candlewood trees. It protects the charming vervet monkey, bushbuck and bushpig, as well as porcupine, mongoose, honey badger and grysbok. This is a popular choice for keen birders, as the Goukamma River and estuary and the Groenvlei Lake provide a welcoming habitat for more than 220 bird species, including the rare African black oystercatcher. There are two indigenous and four alien species of fish found in the Groenvlei Lake.
Visitors enjoy the sight of the magnificent Southern Right whales between June and November, while Bottle-nosed and Humpback dolphins play in the waves throughout the year.
- Knysna Elephant Park
The Knysna Elephant Park was established in 1994 and was the first facility in South Africa to house and care for orphaned African elephants. Over the last twenty years, the park has cared for and raised more than forty elephants.
There are nine elephants in the present herd, which is the largest domesticated matriarchal herd in the country. We offer our guests the opportunity to get up close and personal with the elephants, so that they can appreciate their awe-inspiring presence.
- Tenikwa Wildlife Awareness Centre
Tenikwa is a wildlife centre located in the rural area outside Plettenberg Bay along the pristine Garden Route. Tenikwa grew from humble beginnings in 2002 and today it is one of the largest active wildlife rehabilitation centres in the Western Cape, attending to a diversity of animals, both terrestrial and marine species.
To fund the rehabilitation work and to raise awareness of the conservation issues in South Africa, Tenikwa offers various, small group programs throughout the day, which cater for all ages and fitness levels; the focus is on providing a conservation-based, informative tour.
Horseriding & Walking Trails
- Garden Route Horse Trails
Garden Route Horse Trails offer remarkable horse riding trails into the stunning indigenous forest of the Garden Route National Park where you can experience occasional sightings of local wildlife on horseback. Rides are suitable for all ages and riding experience is not necessary. Our horses are well trained, very safe, reliable and have between 2 and 6 years experience on the trails. All our horses love the water and swimming, so we offer the opportunity for our clients to swim with the horses after a ride. It’s very easy and lots of fun!
- Black Horse Trails
At the base of the majestic Outeniqua mountains in the Wilderness, lies our charming horse ranch, Black Horse Trails. We are a relaxed and friendly bunch with whom you can enjoy a few precious hours of your holiday time, in a true animal crazy environment.
- Garden Route Trail
The environmental diversity of the Garden Route offers visitors forest, wetland, dune, Fynbos, estuary, riverine, montane and coastal experiences in a concentrated area.
It is upon this foundation that we have developed our range of guided nature experiences and birding in the Garden Route. The combination of natural variation, a passion for nature and our scientific background, has allowed Garden Route Trail to become unsurpassed leaders of informative nature guiding in the Garden Route.