This scenic Accommodated Garden Route & Lesotho Safari travels from Cape Town to Durban, South Africa.
Our exciting Southern Africa Budget Safari starts off in the famous Cape Whale Route, stopping in Betty's Bay, Stony Point Nature Reserve and Hermanus. It's then off to the Small Karoo to see the ostrich capital of Oudtshoorn and tour Cango Caves. Heading to the beautiful southern coast we visit Plettenberg Bay and Nature's Valley, two top highlights on the Garden Route. Next, we explore the natural gem of Tsitsikamma National Park, walking along the coastline and in the forests.
We then go game viewing in the malaria-free Addo Elephant National Park, before revisiting history in Graaff Reinet and watching the sunset over the Valley of Desolation. From the arid Karoo region of South Africa, it's off to the small mountainous kingdom of Lesotho for hiking and optional pony trekking. Lastly, we visit the majestic Drakensberg Mountains in KwaZulu-Natal, before this affordable Garden Route & Lesotho Safari ends in Durban.
This Garden Route to Lesotho Tour departs from Cape Town and travels into the Cape Winelands, South Africa's top wine growing region. From the idyllic Cape Winelands, we proceed along the rugged Cape Whale Route of the Western Cape. Our first stop is Stony Point Nature Reserve, near the small coastal town of Betty's Bay. At Stony Point, we get to see one of the world's largest breeding colonies of African Penguins and endangered cormorant species. Then you are treated to a Chocolate & Wine Tasting in Betty's Bay to sample the decadent delights of the Overberg region.
Arriving in Hermanus, the most famous destination on the Cape Whale Route, we may spot southern right whales frolicking in the waves during whale watching season (between July and November). In the evening, you can enjoy an optional dinner out in Hermanus. We overnight in twin share rooms with en-suite bathrooms at a beachfront hotel with ocean views.
This safari comes with an optional Activity Package at an additional cost. The itinerary includes these highly-recommended activities. Contact African Budget Safaris for a detailed breakdown of what is included in the Activity Package and see the Full Pricing Information above for the cost of the Activity Package.
On day two of our South African adventure, we drive inland along the famous Route 62 towards Oudtshoorn. Our drive takes us over the Hottentots-Holland Mountains and into the sparsely populated, semi-arid Small Karoo - inland of the coastal Garden Route. If time permits we stop in at a quirky pub, with the eye-catching name; Ronnie's Sex Shop. The Route 62 is famous for its quaint farm stalls, local wines and its arts and crafts.
Tonight we stay at a resort in Oudtshoorn town in the Klein Karoo. We stay in twin rooms with en-suite bathrooms at the resort with a pool and internet.
This morning we visit the Cango Caves, taking a guided tour of the elaborate underground cave system (included in Activity Package). The Cango Caves feature some of the most impressive limestone caverns on the planet and the different formations are quite astonishing. After our subterranean excursion, we drive to the coast traversing the scenic Outeniqua Mountains en route to the much-loved Garden Route.
One of South Africa’s most picturesque areas, the Garden Route is a nature lover's paradise with pretty lagoons, majestic mountains, sandy beaches and rocky coast, indigenous forests and fynbos. Continuing along the Garden Route, we head to the charming coastal village of Wilderness where we overnight at a resort. Accommodation is in twin share rooms with en-suite bathrooms and facilities include a pool, bar, restaurant and internet.
Spend the morning enjoying the beautiful beaches of Plett, as the seaside resort town of Plettenberg Bay is known locally.
From Plett, the choice is yours - pick an optional adventure activity or head to Nature's Valley. Your guide can help you to organise optional activities and the safari truck moves between selected points on a set schedule to enable you to move between highlights. Options include sea kayaking, ocean safaris and bird or animal sanctuary visits. In the afternoon you can go to Nature’s Valley to hike along the coast and relax on the unspoilt beaches - enjoying the peace of this scenic hideaway.
Later in the afternoon, a short drive takes us to the Tsitsikamma area near Bloukrans Bridge, further east on the renowned Garden Route. Adventure-seekers can bungee jump off the 216m high Bloukraans Bridge (the highest commercial bungee jump in the world) for a full-on adrenalin rush.
On night four and five of our Garden Route to Lesotho Tour, we sleep in twin rooms with en-suite bathrooms at a Tsitsikamma resort, featuring a bar, internet and laundry services.
On day five we explore the scenic coastal region of Tsitsikamma National Park. One of South Africa’s natural treasures, the Tsitsikamma National Park incorporates rich marine ecosystems, lush indigenous forests and fynbos-covered hills. While in Tsitsikamma we walk the first stretch of the Otter Trail, one of the most famous hiking trails in the country. We also walk to the Big Tree, an eight-hundred-year-old yellowwood in the indigenous forest of Tsitsikamma.
Alternatively, you can do the easier walk along the boardwalks at Storms River Mouth, crossing the suspension bridge along the way. This afternoon, after our beautiful hike we embark on a tour called the Woodcutters Journey (included in Activity Package). This interesting journey reveals more about the indigenous flora and fauna of this rich ecosystem, as well as the local history of the Tsitsikamma area. Alternatively, you can do a treetop canopy tour (optional extra) in the indigenous forests of Tsitsikamma.
Our journey through South Africa continues along the Garden Route and into the rustic Eastern Cape Province. Along the way, we stop off in Jeffreys Bay, one of the top surfing spots in the world. Visit the surfing museum, take a quick surf or sit back and watch the waves with a cup of coffee.
Then we head to a private game farm near Addo Elephant National Park, which is home to one of the densest populations of African elephants in the world. In the afternoon we embark on a game drive in Addo Park in our safari truck. This massive game park also boasts the ‘Big Seven’ (elephant, rhino, lion, buffalo, leopard, southern right whale and great white shark) as the game park includes both land and marine habitats.
We stay in permanent tented-rooms with en-suite bathrooms at a lodge with internet and laundry services, and a bar.
This morning you have the option of visiting the seaside city of Port Elizabeth for some sightseeing or relaxing at our safari lodge. The lodge is set on a small private game reserve in the Sundays River Valley, near Addo Park, and hosts various antelopes and small animals.
After lunch at the lodge, we set off into the game-rich Addo Elephant Park to experience the African bush and search for wildlife. The afternoon game drive in Addo Elephant National Park is conducted in our safari truck, which provides an elevated vantage for spotting wildlife and birds.
Today we travel to Graaff Reinet in the semi-arid Karoo. The Karoo is known for its expansive, flat landscapes with dry sheep farms and a scattering of remote towns.
In the afternoon you have the option of joining a local guide for a historical tour of Graaff-Reinet, time allowing. The fourth oldest town in South Africa, Graaff-Reinet hosts one of the highest concentrations of monuments in the country. Alternatively, you can explore on your own and take a leisurely stroll through town.
Later this afternoon we drive to the nearby Valley of Desolation, where we have sundowners and enjoy the breathtaking panoramas. Watch the sunset over the plains of Camdeboo and Graaff-Reinet, and get a closer look at the local flora and fauna before returning to town. In the winter months, the excursion to the Valley of Desolation takes place the following morning instead.
On day nine we travel through the arid Great Karoo and cross the Gariep (Orange) River entering the mountainous country of Lesotho. Known as the Kingdom in the Sky, Lesotho is one of the highest countries in the world, with the entire country lying over 1000m above sea level.
Day 10 begins with a hike in the mountains of Lesotho, soaking up the beautiful scenery and fresh mountain air. We hike to a village where you get to meet the local Basotho people and find out more about their way of life. The Basotho are known for their traditional straw hats, colourful textiles and hardy ponies.
You have the chance to go pony trekking in the hills (optional) of Lesotho this afternoon. On the pony trek, local villagers guide you along secluded mountain trails to enjoy the breathtaking views from horseback.
We stay in en-suite rooms at a lodge with a bar on day nine and ten.
On day 11, we return to South Africa, staying in the mountains where we visit the Royal Natal (Ukhahlamba Drakensberg) National Park. Along the way, we drive through the impressive landscapes of the Golden Gate National Park in South Africa.
We spend the next day exploring mountain paths and enjoying the beauty of the towering Drakensberg Mountains. The Drakensberg Mountains are South Africa’s highest peaks, also widely considered the most beautiful.
On the morning of day 12, we set off on a hike in the Ukhahlamba Drakensberg National Park, where we meet with local guides and view ancient San rock paintings. Alternatively, you can enjoy optional outdoor activities or simply unwind in the scenic Drakensberg Mountains. There are plenty of walking trails to choose from so you can enjoy nature at your own pace and preferred level of activity.
Our accommodation is in en-suites rooms at a resort with a pool, bar, internet and laundry services.
Our Garden Route & Lesotho Tour takes us through some amazing scenery on our way down to the KwaZulu-Natal coast. Along the way, we stop at the monument that marks the place where Nelson Mandela was arrested in 1962. After visiting the site where this famous Nobel Peace Prize laureate and political icon was arrested, we stop to admire Howick Falls and enjoy the views.
In the late afternoon, we enter the bustling city of Durban, South Africa’s largest port and well-known surfing destination. Although our safari ends upon arrival in Durban, most safari groups choose to go out for an optional meal at one of the excellent Indian restaurants in Durban and enjoy this coastal city’s vibrant nightlife. We can help arrange post-tour accommodation for you in Durban.
This northbound Cape Town to Durban Safari via Lesotho is also available in the reverse order, starting in Durban and ending in Cape Town as the Durban to Cape Town via Lesotho Safari.
These Accommodated Tours are also available as even more affordable Camping Tours visiting South Africa's Garden Route & Lesotho, for more info please contact African Budget Safaris.
For up-to-date and confirmed pricing info for optional items, please drop us an enquiry.
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