Klein Karoo and the Garden Route
Did you know?
The average mature male ostrich stands 2.8 metres tall.
The semi-arid Klein Karoo (also known as the Little Karoo) region of the Western Cape is home to many easily accessible attractions for those who choose to drive along the region's scenic Garden Route.
The Cango Caves, ostrich riding, Gamkaberg Nature Reserve, the Little Karoo Wine Route, Sanbona Wildlife Reserve, Anysberg Nature Reserve and the Klein Karoo National Arts Festival are all good reasons to visit the area.
Regardless of whether you're driving the Garden Route from Cape Town or Port Elizabeth, the scenery is spectacular and the locals in the small towns along the way are entertaining and welcoming. The Klein Karoo offers several detours from the Garden Route that are well worth exploring.
Sparse and largely arid, the Klein Karoo is a photographer's playground, with spectacular sunsets that outline the contrasting landscape in stunning silhouette.
The Cango Caves are the only show-caves in Africa that offer standard and adventure tours in English, Afrikaans, German and French. Visit these splendid caves any day of the year except Christmas Day.
The small towns of the Klein Karoo offer visitors a number of alternative activities...
Outdshoorn, a 45-minute drive from George along the N12, is home to more ostriches than you could ever imagine. At the Cango Ostrich Show Farm, guests who weigh less than 75kg can ride the ostriches, while others are welcome to hand-feed these curious birds.
Art and history lovers should visit Uniondale for a tour of the town's Anglo-Boer War forts and art gallery.
Some of South Africa's best Cape port wines (although the European Union no longer allows these wines to use the name 'port') now come from the town of Calitzdorp, 51 kilometres west of Outdshoorn. Visit Boplaas or De Krans to sample some of these delicious sweet vintages.
Other towns in the Klein Karoo worth visiting include Ladismith, De Rust and Dysselsdorp.
Travel tips & Planning info
Who to contact
Tel: +27 (0)44 272 0041
Public transport in the Klein Karoo is very limited, so your best option is to rent a car from whichever South African airport you fly in to.
Length of stay
Spend three days to a week exploring the Klein Karoo.
Where to stay
The town of George, south of the Klein Karoo along the Garden Route, offers a large variety of accommodation. There is also a range of guesthouses in Outdshoorn, Uniondale and Calitzdorp.
The Klein Karoo National Arts Festival usually takes place in early April. Held in Oudtshoorn, the week-long festival features various exhibitions, dramatic productions, musical performances and discussions.