Things to do
Seven Passes Tented Camp, Wilderness, is situated in the very heart of South Africa’s Garden Route Coast – and close enough to all the attractions and adventures of the Klein Karoo to make a day’s outing to Oudtshoorn a must.
Things to do:
Seven Passes Road
- Great mountain biking
- Great motorcycling
- Scenic drives from 7 Passes Tented Camp to George or Knysna.
Timberlake Farm Village
- You’ll find heaps of different attractions at Timberlake (next to the N2 between Wilderness and Sedgefield):
- Wildwoods Tree Adventure Park – more than 70 aerial platforms connected by zip lines, bridges, Tarzan swings and obstacles.
- Four different eateries: Cafe d’Afrique coffee shop; Zucchini restaurant for hearty country meals; Country Deli for traditional South African takeaways; Oyster Shack for fresh wild oysters.
- Cheese Head – sells local cheeses (from sheep’s milk feta to goat’s milk ricotta) and the famous Gay’s cheeses from Prince Albert. Also local olive oils, raw local honey, preserved figs from Prince Albert, halva and homemade, sugar-free preserves.
- The Oak Barrel - a wide range of wines (open on Sunday’s, too!)
- Faerie Gem- creative creatures, gem stones and jewellery.
- Made Local - organic bamboo children’s clothing, pottery, garden sculptures, wooden frames, and other products from Garden Route artits
- The Timberlake MTB Challenge - a fun, fast, and intense time trial and skills course with purpose built obstacles like bridges, balance beams, jumps, log piles and a seesaw.
- Go Quading Family Quad Trail: a short, winding track in the forest with just the right amount of technical turns to make if fun for all ages. 70 and 110cc bikes for kids and 150cc bikes for adults
- Wildwoods Adventure Land - giant Slippery Slide; Wobbly Wire; Adventure Castle; Adventure Trail obstacle course; Jumping Castle; touch farm; Happy Snail windmill.
- The Timberlake Express barrel train (Tuesdays to Sundays from the station next to the WildWoods Adventure Castle)
- Kids Art Classes (Dress for mess!) and children’s parties
Mountain biking trails: Sedgefield
- Sedgefield offers six circular MTB routes: Wilderness-Knysna (108 km); Woodville-Hoogekraal (46 km); Hoekwil-Barrington (75,7 km); Railway (17 km); Cloud Nine (10 km); and Platbank (16,3 km).
- All routes start and finish at Cycleworx in Sedgefield village.
SANParks Cycling Trails
- Farleigh Forest Cycling Trails (all routes start and finish at the Farleigh Forestry Station car park.You’ll need a mountain biking permit - available from SANPark’s office on Thesen Island, Knysna).
- 10 km Green Route (about 1 hour) - gently undulating with several medium hills along Jeep track and a logging road.
- 20 km Yellow Route(2 to 3 hours) - gently undulating with several medium hills followed by a longish steep uphill and fast undulating return on a logging road, and narrow forest jeep track
- 30 km Blue Route (3 to 4 hours) - gently undulating with several medium hills followed by a number of steep, longish uphills and a fast, undulating return along Jeep track and narrow forest paths.
- SANParks’ awesome Harkerville MTB Routes (all routes start and finish at the Garden of Eden, between Knysna and Plettenberg Bay. Permits are available at the guard hut).
- 14km Yellow Route (about 90 minutes) – along gravelled service roads. Generally remains open when the other routes are closed due to wet conditions.
- 12 km Blue Route (1½ hours) - along a forest slip-path, through typical medium-moist high forest and past a small glade of American coast redwood which were planted in 1927.
- 15 km Green Route (2¼ hours) – along the Grooteilandpad a and onto Waterpad where a shady swimming hole providess a pleasant stopping point. An alternative southward loop provides breathtaking views of the rugged Harkerville coast.
- 24 km Red Route (3 to 5 hours) - much tougher than the other Harkerville routes and difficult for the not-so-fit rider. Scenically, one of the most rewarding mountain-bike routes in South Africa. Long stretches of off-road track along historic slip-paths through the forest, and a section of track through the coastal fynbos along the cliff-tops.
- Download a map of the Harkerville routes
- Petrus-Se-Brand Cycle Route, Diepwalle Forest
- 24 km route one-way route (north to south – Diepwalle to Garden of Eden) for mountain bikers of average fitness. About 2 hours.
- Obtain permits and start at the Diepwalle Forest Station office (where you obtain your permit).
- This route follows forest roads and the contoured bed of the old Coffee Pot narrow-gauge railway line (which ran from Ysterhoutrug to Knysna, and which featured in Dalene Matthee’s novel ‘Toorbos’). Pass through moist and medium-moist high forest, and take a rest in the fynbos of Kleineiland (‘Ssmall island’).Now the route descends into the Kleineiland River Valley before taking a fairly severe ascent over 4km. The last section of route follows an old slip-path – exciting and exhilarating riding!
- Download a map of thePetrus-Se-Brand Cycle Route
- More information from Knysna Cycle Works
Walking trails – Wilderness section of the Garden Route National Park
- Half Collared Kingfisher Trail: 2 km, 1 to 2 hours. A shady walk through the indigenous forest on the western bank of the Touw River. Good birding (Knysna loerie, narina trogon, red-billed wood hoopoe, kingfishers, African fish eagle, other raptors).
- Giant Kingfisher Trail: 3.5 km, 3 to 4 hours – on the eastern bank of the Touw River. Slightly more challenging, but the big rewards are the Touw River Waterfall (great for a swim and a picnic), and the birding.
- Pied Kingfisher Trail: 10 km, 3 to 4 hours. Mostly a birder’s trail on a level, circular route through the fynbos and on the beach.
- Brown Hooded Kingfisher Trail:5 km, 2 to 3 hours - forest trail along the Duiwe River; also popular with birders
- Cape Dune Molerat Trail: 3 km, 2 to 3 hours - sandy trail through the fynbos with good stands of heathers and proteas
- Two great hides built and maintained by the Garden Route National Park:
- Malachite Kingfisher Hide at Langvlei (access from Lakes Road, between Wilderness and Sedgefield)
- Rondevlei Bird Hide (access via the Garden Route National Park Research Laboratory)
- Woodville Forest Walk & the Big Tree
- Visit one of the oldest and best-known of the giant yellowwoods in the Garden Route’s indigenous forests
- Great birding, too: narina trogon, Knysna loerie, yellow-throated woodland warbler, olive bush-shrike, green-backed camaroptera, white-starred robin, chorister robin, blue-mantled crested-flycatcher, olive woodpecker, Knysna warbler. in the fields next to the road: black-winged lapwing, Denham’s bustard.
- Off the Seven Passes Road, near Seven Passes Tented Camp.
Eden Adventures, Wilderness – canoeing, kloofing & more
- Kloofing – also called canyoneering – which includes boulder-hopping and swimming down narrow canyons lined with lush indigenous forest. And you can make those optional jumps off the cliffs into sweet, fresh, cola-coloured water, too...
- Abseiling in the Kaaimans Gorge – two descents right next to a magnificent waterfall.
- Teambuilding (in Wilderness and as far afield as Plettenberg Bay, Oudtshoorn, and Mossel Bay) – including events like a Wild Treasure Hunt, Wilderness Survivor Games, Drumming Workshops, and Paintball
- Canoe hire – single, double and triple canoes equipped with paddles, buoyancy aids and waterproof containers, with various routes to follow: up the Touw River lagoon; down the Serpentine River to Island Lake ... (great for birders, by the way).
- Plettenberg Bay’s only about 80 km from Wilderness – so it’s perfect for a day’s outing. Try these awesome adventures:
- Taste traditional South African mampoer-based liqueurs – and see how the mampoer is made - at the Nyati jjj Distillery at The Mill, in The Crags (from the N2, take the Monkeyland turnoff. You’ll find The Mill on your right, about a kilometre along).
- Visit Bramon Wine Estate - also at The Crags – for award-winning Methode Cap Classique sparkling wines and a beautiful still Sauvignon blanc. The farm restaurant serves long, lingering lunches that feature local cheeses, oysters, meat, and more.
- Take a guided tour at Monkeyland or stroll through Birds of Eden – two ethically correct animal sanctuaries where previously captive animals are provided with homes in near-natural habitats. Birds of Eden is the world’s largest free-flight aviary
- Enjoy a whale and dolphin watching safari in Plettenberg Bay with Ocean Adventures or Ocean Safaris
Oudtshoorn, ostrich farms, Cango Caves and the Klein Karoo
- Another a great day drive from 7 Passes Tented Camp: over the Outeniqua Pass and into the semi-arid Klein Karoo (Oudtshoorn’s about 80 km from Wilderness)
- Tour the Cango Caves – one of Africa’s greatest natural wonders
- Visit Safari Ostrich Show Farm – a working ostrich farm wand famous ostrich palace from the feather boom of the early 1900s. www.safariostrich.co.za
- Game watching, horse rides, elephant experiences and more at Buffelsdrift Game Lodge.
- Wine tasting, Karoo tapas restaurant, micro brewery at Karusa Vineyards.
- Crocodile cage diving at Cango Wildlife Ranch. www.cango.co.za
- Take a scenic ride over the Swartberg Mountainsand through the Meiringspoort in the Swartberg Nature Reserve.
- Check out South Africa’s Afrikaans culture – and some fantastic sports events, too - at the Klein Karoo Nasionale Kunstefees (KKNK) – the Little Karoo’s annual festival of the arts.