• Tsitsikamma Forest, Garden Route National Park

Garden Route National Park

Visit South Africa's first unfenced community park while you're staying at Brenton Bushbuck Lodge - with 155,000 hectares of wilderness to explore and enjoy!

The Garden Route National Park protects the Knysna River Estuary (Knysna Lagoon), much of the indigenous Knysna forest, and many of the mountains, beaches, lakes, and fynbos in the area between Tsitsikamma and Wilderness. Its divided into a number of separate sections, and many parts of the Park remain unfenced and freely accessible.

Wildlife includes more than 250 species of birds, and many smaller animals - but also the southernmost herd of African elephants.

Attractions include lagoon cruises, walks, picnic sites, mountain-biking, birding, and forest canopy tours - and even a Secret Elephant Experience!

Please scroll down for links and more information. 

Knysna Forests

Explore the mythical, mysterious, and beautiful Knysna Forests in the Garden Route National Park - on foot or by car

  • Walking trails in the Wilderness (great for birders, too: the Wilderness Lakes area is a RAMSAR site)
  • Walking trails and picnic spots in the Goudveld area (site of the Millwood Gold Fields - South Africa's first modern-era gold rush): Circles in a Forest Trail; Millwood Walk; Jubilee Creek picnic site
  • Walking trails in the Tsitsikamma - including the suspension bridge over the Storms River Mouth
  • The 'Rooted in Time' self-drive tour of historic and heritage sites in the forests. 
  • Visit the Forest Legends Museum at Diepwalle for stories of the forests, the early woodcutters, and the Knysna Elephants
» Visit the Knysna Forests in the Garden Route National Park - info

Birding

With terrain that ranges from beaches to lagoons, fynbos to forests, and wetlands to mountains, and with a list of about 300 species of resident and migrant birds, the Garden Route National Park offers some of the best bird-watching you'll find - anywhere. 

For authoritative descriptions of the local reserves and their birdlife, please visit BirdLife South Africa:

» Birding in the Garden Route National Park - info

MTB Routes

The Garden Route National Park has trails for almost every level of rider - but please note that you'll have to buy a tag before you ride. For information, please visit the Park online, or call (044) 302 5600

Downloads:

For detailed information about local trails - written by legendary rider Jacques Marais (who's ridden them all!) - please visit www.mtbroutes.co.za

Farleigh

  • North of Sedgefield.
  • 3 different routes; easy to moderate, 1- to 5-hours riding time. 
  • Jeep tracks, logging roads, gravel and dirt tracks.
  • More information:  Farleigh MTB Routes

Homtini

  • Krisjan-se-Nek picnic site, near Rheenendal
  • 19 km (90-minute), intermediate, circular route 
  • Gravel road, jeep track, singletrack
  • More information: Homtini MTB Trail 

Harkerville

  • At the Garden of Eden, off the N2 national road between Plett and Knysna
  • 4 routes of between 12 and 24 km; easy to advanced level; 1 - 4 hours
  • Gravel roads, single track through forest and fynbos
  • More information: Harkerville MTB routes

Petrus-se-Brand MTB Route

  • From Diepwalle Forest Station to Harkerville
  • One way (24 km) or circular (48 km) route; 2- to 3-hours each way; intermediate level
  • Forestry tracks, some singletrack
  • More information: Petrus-se-Brand MTB Route 
» MTB Routes in the Garden Route National Park - info