Day Trips from Mossel Bay
Mossel Bay is situated within a short drive of most of the attractions of the Garden Route and Klein Karoo – and the views along the way are all spectacular. George and Wilderness, Sedgefield, Knysna, Plettenberg Bay, and Oudtshoorn are all easily accessible on the major roads – and there are some wonderful, little-used, graveled roads that you’ll want to explore, too.
Go North! Oudtshoorn and the Klein Karoo
Follow the R328 via Ruiterbos and over the Outeniqua Mountains to Oudtshoorn and Calitzdorp in the semi-arid Klein Karoo. You could visit the Cango Caves, the wine estates, or an ostrich show farm – or you could take a game drive on one of the private nature reserves, or stop in to see the collection of old musical instruments and ostrich memorabilia at the CP Nel Museum in Oudtshoorn. If you’re looking for a longer trek, visit the Swartberg Mountains (part of the Swartberg World Heritage Site): drive from Mossel Bay to Oudtshoorn, and then via the Swartberg Pass to Prince Albert, returning via Meiringspoort, de Rust, and Oudtshoorn. (Just know that this route is about 360 km long. But good roads make it very doable as a day drive from Mossel Bay.)
Go East! Knysna to Plettenberg Bay
Follow the N2 via George to the holiday playgrounds of Wilderness, Knysna, and Plettenberg Bay – all of which are gateways to the unique Garden Route National Park. This is an unfenced wilderness of more than 160,000 hectares that offers opportunities for hiking, birding, walking, mountain biking, and picnicking – most of which you can enjoy without the need for a guide. The Garden Route National Park also protects most of the famous evergreen Knysna Forests – the world that Dalene Matthee wrote about in her novels ‘Circles in a Forest,’ ‘Fiela’s Child,’ and ‘Mulberry Forest.’ The N2 is also the road to the great golf courses of the Garden Route – and to adventures like treetop canopy tours, animal sanctuaries, ferry boat tours of the Knysna Lagoon, and more.
Go West! Herbertsdale to the Gourits River
This route! It’s one of the beautiful undiscovered treasures of the Mossel Bay area. From Mossel Bay, drive westwards on the N2 (in the direction of Cape Town), and turn right onto the R327 via Mossdustria to Herbertsdale (where you should stop to taste the award-winning table- and dessert wines at Jakkalsvlei Private Wine Cellar – Mossel Bay’s only wine estate). Now drive to Albertinia to visit the Aloe ferox product factories, or to take the kids to the skull garden at Garden Route Game Lodge (of course it has may other attractions, too...). From here, make your way along the gravel road to Blombos and the Gourits River before returning home – and searching for unusual birds like blue cranes or lesser flamingoes along the way.
Download Mossel Bay Tourism’s ‘Things to do’ brochure from www.bit.ly/DoGuide - or collect a copy from the Info Office on the corner of Church and Market Streets. It’s packed with information – and the entries are colour-coded to a fold-out map to make planning your routes easy and fun.