Route 62, The Garden Route
On January 3, 2011 we left Cape Town and started our journey along Route 62, also known as the Garden Route.
The Garden Route is sandwiched between the Outeniqua and Tsitsikamma Mountains and the Indian Ocean.
There is so much to see and do along Route 62 that most people take 1-2 weeks to drive it.
Unfortunately, we don’t have that luxury so we did what we could in the few days we had.
We read a lot ahead of time and decided that The Lentelus Wine Farm Guest House in Barrydale would be a perfect first stop.
Their family winery, Joubert-Tradauw, is just a mile up the road so we went there for a late lunch.
We ordered the Unplugged Platter for two.
It was a variety of cheeses, relishes, figs, fruits, nuts, seeds, imported meats, liver pate, and spanakopita served with homemade breads and tapenade.
After lunch we drove the Tradouws Pass, a magnificent drive through the Langeberg Mountain Range.
Pictures do not do it justice.
It’s one of thirteen passes that master road engineer Sir Thomas Bain built in the Southern Cape during the 1800’s.
“The Tradouw Pass is renowned for its wild flowers in the spring, clusters of blazing red aloes in late autumn, breathtaking waterfalls in the winter and magnificent swimming pools in summer.”
Back at the farm the dogs took us on a tour of their property.
Then, Ms. Helena Joubert prepared a table in the garden for us.
She said it was the perfect spot and time of day to relax in the garden.
We enjoyed wine from her family’s winery and snacked on olives, bread, and an olive/caper/anchovy tapenade for dinner.
The next day we drove to Oudtshoorn, the center of the Klein Karoo and the Ostrich Capital.
Oudtshoorn is also famous for the Cango Caves, an underground natural wonder.
We walked through fascinating limestone formations that are the result of millions of years of natural cave making.
That afternoon we drove to Knysna (pronounced Nize-nuh), another town on the Garden Route.
Knysna is a gorgeous town primarily built on the northern shore of a lagoon fed by the Knysna River. The lagoon opens to the Indian Ocean after passing between “The Heads”.
We stayed at the Villa Paradisa Guest House, a beautiful home built on Paradise Hill.
I imagine the hill is named for the view.
We ate dinner at Sirocco, a restaurant on the water in Thesen Harbour Town.
I started with a Caesar Salad with anchovies and bacon and John started with Queen Prawns in a light green curry sauce served Asian noodles tossed in basil pesto.
For dinner John had Prawns, Mussels, Calamari, and fish in a curry, coriander, lemon & coconut milk sauce.
I had Queen Black Tiger Prawns with garlic butter.
Unfortunately, we were only in Knysna for one night.
Knysna is another place we’ll return to one day and spend several days exploring the area.
Our hosts at Villa Paradisa, Martin and Marilyn, wanted to take us out on their boat and give us a personal tour of the area and watch the sunset with a glass of wine.
I begged for a rain-check.
Marilyn suggested that we drive up to The Heads on our way out of town.
It was a foggy morning but the view was still remarkable.
Can you imagine this on a clear day?
Our next stop was Addo Elephant National Park.
We went on a couple of game drives that you can read about HERE with a ton of pictures.
Our last stop along the Garden Route was Port Elizabeth.
We stayed at the Manor 38 Guest House in the seaside suburb of Summerstrand.
The area where we were staying was along the beach and had a touristy feel.
So while working on my tan at the guesthouse pool, I read Trip Advisor and found a restaurant loved by the locals.
We ended up at Vovo Telo Pizzeria in Richmond Hill for dinner, about 10 minutes from our guesthouse.
The place was filled with locals and the pizza was delicious!
John ordered the Fennel Sausage Pizza with Caramelized Onions. I ordered the Ricotta and Mushroom Pizza with Fresh Arugula.
We ate every single bite.
Then ordered dessert.
John’s Buttery Apple Cake with Mascarpone Cream:
And my Goat Cheese Cheesecake:
Our last night on the Garden Route and our last night in South Africa.
I can see why people take several weeks to explore The Garden Route.
South Africa is one of my favorite destinations so far.
I think I told you that already. Four or five times, at least.
Our next destination was full of adventure.
- The Lentelus Wine Farm Guest House
- Langeberg Mountain Range
- Villa Paradisa Guest House
- The Heads
- Port Elizabeth
- Manor 38 Guest House
- Vovo Telo Pizzeria
South Africa is one of my favorite places in the world! See more trips and photos HERE.
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