The Garden Route is a gorgeous stretch of coastline that runs from Mossel Bay in the Western Cape region to Storms River in the Eastern Cape. Lush coastal forests and verdant ridges are dotted with countless lagoons and lakes, giving this region its name. Its coastal climate is one of the most mild in the world, second only to Hawaii. It never drops below 50F in the winter, and rarely climbs above 83F in the summer. The indigenous fauna is some of the most unique in the world, blending the famous Cape Fynbos plants of the Western Cape, with species typical of temperate forests. This lovely area offers great hiking and charming towns, like Knysna, Plettenberg Bay, and George. Surprising destinations pop up along its length, making it a wonderful place for a self-driving adventure. Stop in at Oudtshoorn, the world's ostrich capital, or enjoy a round of golf at one of the many award winning golf courses.
A chain of protected marine reserves along the Garden Route have created a haven for the diverse ocean life. Divers can find soft corals, large pods of dolphins, seals, and endangered Southern Right Whales. Considered one of the best whale-watching sites in the world, the Southern Right Whales gather in large numbers in the protected bays of the Western Cape to give birth to their calves. Humpback whales and orcas have been known to feed close to shore, taking advantage of the ample food sources provided by the cold, nutrient-rich waters.