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Mossel Bay | Garden Route

Unleash Your Adventurous Spirit

Exploring Thrilling Activities and Garden Route Highlights

SCUBA diver with a pyjama catshark that poses with her looking at the camera in Mossel Bay. SCUBA is one of the top Garden Route highlights.
A SCUBA diver in poses with a pyjama catshark on a Go Dive Mossel Bay expedition

We are always craving a thrilling adventure that ignites our senses and leaves us with memories to last a lifetime. Of course, our go-to adventure is fishing, but for other thrills, we don’t have to look any further than these Garden Route highlights. The region boasts a stunning stretch of coastline in South Africa that offers a plethora of exhilarating activities for the adventurous soul.

Enchantment of the Garden Route

From heart-pounding hikes through dense forests to adrenaline-pumping water sports in crystal-clear waters, the Garden Route has it all. Imagine ziplining through the treetops, bungee jumping off towering cliffs, or diving with majestic marine creatures – the possibilities are endless. Not only will you satisfy your craving for adventure, but you’ll also be enchanted by the breathtaking beauty of this coastal paradise. 

So, why wait? Unleash your adventurous spirit and embark on an unforgettable journey through the Garden Route, where thrills and natural wonders await at every turn. Get ready to experience the ultimate adrenaline rush and create memories that will leave you yearning for more.

Family hikers on one of the Garden Route hiking trails in Knysna forest
Knysna forest trails for most ages and fitness levels

What makes the Garden Route an ideal destination for adventure seekers

The Garden Route is a dream come true for adventure seekers, offering a perfect blend of natural beauty and thrilling activities. Nestled between the Indian Ocean and the Outeniqua and Tsitsikamma Mountains, this picturesque region boasts a diverse landscape that serves as the backdrop for a wide range of adventures. Whether you’re an adrenaline junkie or simply someone looking to step out of your comfort zone, the Garden Route has something for everyone.

The area’s moderate climate makes it an ideal destination for outdoor activities all year round. With its mild winters and warm summers, you can explore the Garden Route’s wonders no matter the season. The region is also home to several national parks and nature reserves, providing ample opportunities for hiking, wildlife spotting, and immersing yourself in the beauty of Mother Nature. Whether you’re traversing rugged mountain trails or strolling along pristine beaches, the Garden Route’s wonders truly leave you in awe.

Thrilling activities available in the Garden Route

When it comes to exhilarating activities, the Garden Route offers an extensive range of options to satisfy even the most adventurous souls. From heart-pounding adrenaline rushes to more serene but equally exciting experiences, you’ll find something you’ll love. Let’s dive into some of the rousing activities that await you in this enchanting region.

A white shark filmed from the cage on the shark cage diving boat in Mossel Bay.
Up close and personal: a white shark photographed from White Shark Africa's cage diving boat in Mossel Bay

Hiking and nature trails in the Garden Route

The Garden Route is a haven for hiking enthusiasts, with a multitude of trails that cater to all fitness levels. Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or a novice, you’ll find a trail that suits your preferences. One of the most popular hikes in the region is the Otter Trail, a 5-day adventure that takes you along the rugged coastline, through dense forests, and over rocky outcrops. 

If you’re looking for shorter but equally breathtaking trails, Oystercatcher Trails take you along the spectacular coast of Mossel Bay stimulating all your senses along the way. For Plettenberg Bay, we highly recommend the Robberg Nature Reserve, which offers a variety of routes showcasing the area’s diverse flora and fauna.

Water activities in the Garden Route

With its pristine coastline and crystal-clear waters, the Garden Route offers a paradise for water sports enthusiasts. Whether you’re into surfing, kayaking, or SCUBA diving, you’ll find plenty of opportunities to indulge in your favourite water activities. SCUBA diving is a choice activity of ours and when the waters warm up, you’ll find us exploring our underwater world with local dive operators

The region is known for its excellent surfing conditions, with spots like The Point, Mossel Bay, Jeffreys Bay and Victoria Bay attracting surfers from around the world. If you prefer a more tranquil experience, kayaking along serene waterways like Wilderness’ Touw River and King Fisher Trail is a fantastic way to explore the area’s nature.

Wildlife encounters in the Garden Route

The Garden Route is teeming with exciting wildlife, providing ample opportunities for unforgettable encounters with some of Africa’s most iconic animals. The region is home to several Big Five reserves, including the luxurious Gondwana Game Reserve, just outside of Mossel Bay. You can embark on stimulating game drives to spot elephants, lions, zebras, and more. For a truly unique experience, head to Plettenberg Bay and join a marine safari to witness dolphins, seals, and even whales in their natural habitat. And for the ultimate thrill-seekers, white shark cage diving to come face-to-face with these incredible toothy creatures is an absolute must-do.

African elephant encounter in the Garden Route, Mossel Bay

Fishing in the Garden Route

Fishing has a lot of stigma, but it is a seriously exciting activity. The adrenaline rush of feeling that big tug and seeing the tip of your rod bending is unequalled by any other activity. There is an element of patience involved, which just adds to the buzz of anticipation when you’re out on the open water. Adding to the pastime itself is the fact that you’re outdoors, in a beautiful location, with a high chance of coming across marine wildlife while you’re there. Even someone who has never fished before will get the most out of the experience with our guided expeditions.

Adrenaline-pumping activities in the Garden Route

If you’re an adrenaline junkie seeking an unforgettable rush, the Garden Route won’t disappoint. From ziplining through the treetops to bungee jumping off towering cliffs, there are plenty of heart-pounding activities to get your blood pumping. The Tsitsikamma Forest offers the world’s highest bridge bungee jump, where you can take the leap of faith and experience an adrenaline rush like no other as the ground comes rushing up. For those seeking a more aerial adventure, you can’t get much higher than sky diving in Mossel Bay or paragliding in Wilderness. If that’s a little too much of an ascent for you, then ziplining through the lush forests of the Garden Route is an exhilarating experience that offers breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape, from a more reasonable height.

Skydive Mossel Bay jumpers over he land with the ocean in the background
Credit: Skydive Mossel Bay

Exploring the charming towns along the Garden Route

While the Garden Route is renowned for its natural beauty and lively adventures, it also boasts a collection of charming towns that are worth exploring. Each town along the route has its own unique character and attractions, offering a delightful mix of culture, history, and culinary pleasures. Here are a few towns that should be on your itinerary when exploring the Garden Route.

Mossel Bay

Starting with our home of Mossel Bay. Ours is a historic coastal town with a rich maritime heritage. Explore the Bartolomeu Dias Museum Complex, which showcases the town’s history and the first recorded European landing in South Africa. Take a stroll along Diaz Beach or hike up the St. Blaize Trail for panoramic views of the bay. As a 30 km-long embayment, the town attracts a lot of water wonder seekers. On top of fishing, you can enjoy the thrills mentioned above like SCUBA diving, snorkelling, shark cage diving, kayaking, surfing and lots more. The whole family can take a boat trip to Seal Island and witness the playful antics of our Cape fur seals.

Mossel Bay's The Point as seen from above. The town is known for the best activities Garden Route.
This is The Point, Mossel Bay - famous for surfing and the lighthouse


Known as the “Pearl of the Garden Route,” Knysna is a picturesque town nestled on the banks of a tranquil lagoon. Famous for its oysters and scenic beauty, Knysna offers a range of activities for visitors. Take a leisurely cruise on the lagoon, visit the Knysna Heads for breathtaking views, or explore the town’s vibrant arts and crafts scene. Don’t forget to indulge in some fresh seafood at one of the many Waterfront Knysna Quays restaurants.

Plettenberg Bay

With its pristine beaches and lush forests, Plettenberg Bay is a popular holiday destination along the Garden Route. The town is known for its laid-back atmosphere and abundance of outdoor activities. Spend your days lounging on the beach, exploring the nearby nature reserves, or embarking on ocean adventures. Plettenberg Bay is also home to several world-class golf courses, making it a paradise for golf enthusiasts.

Beacon Island Hotel - a famous landmark in Plettenberg Bay

Tips for planning your adventure in the Garden Route

Before embarking on your bucket list adventure in the Garden Route, we recommend planning ahead to make the most of your experience. Here are some tips to help you plan your itinerary and ensure a memorable trip.

  1. Research and choose the activities that align with your interests and fitness level. Whether you’re a thrill-seeker, water baby, or prefer more leisurely pursuits, the Garden Route offers something for everyone.
  2. Pack appropriate clothing and gear for your chosen activities. From hiking boots to wet gear, make sure you’re well-prepared for the adventures that await.
  3. Consider the time of year and weather conditions when planning your trip. The Garden Route’s climate can vary, so be prepared for different weather scenarios. Winters, June to August, can get very chilly and summers, November to February, are hot with sporadic rainy days.
  4. Book your accommodations and activities in advance, especially during the peak travel seasons. At these times, there is a huge influx of visitors and most things get booked up very quickly. This will ensure you have a seamless and enjoyable experience.
  5. Take advantage of local guides and tour operators who can provide expert knowledge and enhance your experience with their insights and expertise. We know plenty of experts in town who can really make the most out of your adventure. 

Kayaking near Santos Beach in Mossel Bay, Garden Route
Kayakers near Santos Beach in Mossel Bay, Garden Route

Embrace your adventurous side in the enthralling Garden Route

The Garden Route is nirvana for adventure seekers, offering a perfect blend of soul-stirring activities and breathtaking beauty. Whether you’re hiking through dense forests, diving with marine creatures, or indulging in adrenaline-pumping adventures, this coastal stretch in South Africa has it all. Explore charming towns, encounter wildlife, and create memories that will last a lifetime. 

So, unleash your adventurous spirit and embark on an unforgettable journey through the Garden Route, where thrills and natural wonders await at every turn. It’s time to embrace your adventurous side and experience the ultimate adrenaline rush in this enchanting paradise.