I can’t speak too highly of the guides …
David Sykes, UK, 2011 (3rd tour with H-C Travel, returned to ride the Cape Classic again in 2015)
The Cape Classic – the ultimate South African tour – lots of interesting roads, landscapes, sights and people, including Cape Town, the Garden Route, Addo and Route 62.
Like all of our Cape motorcycle tours, we start and end in Cape Town, giving you the opportunity to extend your holiday by a few days to explore the jewel of South Africa. From the Cape metropolis you ride along winding mountain passes, through lush landscapes and the wine region of the Western Cape. Then ride the high plateau that is the interior of South Africa. Called the Karoo, this arid, semi-desert region is home to the R62, the African equivalent to America’s Route 66. Take some time to explore this area including the ostrich farming in Oudtshoorn and the historical Village of Graaff Reinet before reaching Addo Elephant National Park. Famous for its elephants, it is also home to lion, leopard, buffalo and rhino, making it a complete Big 5 destination. Having spent a day on safari, head off to Port Elizabeth to start riding the famous Garden Route, a long stretch of coastal forests including the towns of Plettenberg Bay and Knysna from where you will finish your loop though the Cape with a visit to the Winelands.
Historic Cape Town • Explore Winelands • Search for the ‘Big 5’ • Ride along the Garden Route • Visit the Southernmost point of Africa at Cape Agulhas • Scenic countryside
Day 1 Arrive Cape Town
You will be picked up in an air-conditioned minibus which will take you on a short orientation tour of Cape Town and visiting Table Mountain (weather dependant!). Expect to see the Castle of Good Hope, City Hall, District 6, Company Gardens, the Cathedral and the Cape Malay Quarters. Relax this afternoon before the welcome dinner this evening at the gold restaurant, which serves traditional South African delicacies and showcase some of the country’s diverse cultures.
Day 2 Cape Town
Make the short trip to Cape Town Harley-Davidson to pick up the motorcycles. After a short introduction depart for a tour to the Cape of Good Hope including Camps Bay, Hout Bay, the famous Chapman’s Peak Drive, Scarborough, the Cape of Good Hope, Cape Point, Simon’s Town and its penguins, and Ou Kaapse Weg. This ride takes you along some of the well-known cape passes and to all the major attractions and gives you a chance to get acquainted with the bikes.
Day 3 Cape Town – Montagu
Start today heading East via the N1. The route takes you through the winelands of Wellington and Paarl to the Drakenstein Mountains and you will spend the day riding several passes until reaching the overnight stop.
Day 4 Montagu – Prince Albert
Today begins exploring the interior of South Africa, a semi-desert known as the Karoo. Along rugged mountains and through barren landscape, ride to Matjiesfontein. This old historic railway village of just a few houses, a hotel and railway station was once home to 14,000 British troops, but has remained unchanged since the early 1900s. After lunch, continue to Prince Albert, an idyllic little Karoo village build in the Cape Dutch style.
Day 5 Prince Albert – Graaff Reinet
The dry and arid landscape continues to surround you as you cross the Swartberg Mountain on the Meiringspoort Route with its many bridges. Stopping along the way in some of the enchanted villages continue to Graaff Reinet, probably the best-preserved Cape Dutch village, still steeped in Anglo-Boer war history. Before dinner ride up into the mountains to watch the sun set over the Valley of Desolation.
Day 6 Graaff Reinet – Addo Elephant National Park
Today it’s a short ride into the Eastern Cape Province, a land of rolling bushy hills, solitude and wild animals. In late afternoon you reach Addo National Park. Having started as a small elephant sanctuary, this is now the third biggest national park in South Africa, boasting all the ‘Big 5’.
Day 7 Addo Elephant National Park (free day).
After Breakfast take a guided game drive through the park, famous for its Elephants. The afternoon can be spent relaxing or hunting for further pictures in the support vehicle. This evening enjoy the old South African tradition of the “Braai & Dop” (barbecue & beer).
Day 8 Addo Elephant National Park – Knysna
Back on the bikes and ride along the Garden Route into the great coastal forests of South Africa. Make a few stops along the way to admire the giant trees in the Tsitsikamma area until reaching the lagoon city of Knysna, capital of the Garden Route.
Day 9 Knysna (free day)
A day at leisure in Knysna. Use today to relax by the pool, get some shopping done or go sailing on the lagoon, Knysna also offers an incredible variety of outdoor entertainment: mountain biking, abseiling, kayaking, scuba diving and many more options are on offer.
Day 10 Knysna – Oudtshoorn
Ride along the famous Garden Route, through Wilderness and Mossel Bay until the Outeniqua Pass leads you over the Langeberg Mountains to meet up with the R62, known as the longest Wine Route in the world and cutting east to west through most of the country – South Africa’s equivalent to America’s Route 66. Tonight you overnight on an ostrich farm, so you can check out your jockey skills on a racing ostrich.
Day 11 Oudtshoorn – Hermanus
Travel through Montagu, before heading south, crossing the Langeberg again. After taking some time to discover the little gem that is Swellendam, continue down to the coast. Visit Cape Agulhas, the southernmost point of the African continent, before settling into your accommodation in Hermanus.
Day 12 Hermanus – Stellenbosch
Spend today riding some fascinating mountain passes in the Hottentots-Holland Mountains, ending up in Stellenbosch, a pretty university town where you have the chance to sample some of the world-renowned wines the region has to offer at the farewell dinner.
Day 13 Stellenbosch – Cape Town
A short ride brings you back to Cape Town where you drop off your bike. Enjoy the afternoon at leisure: explore Cape Town on foot or on the sightseeing bus, do some shopping for souvenirs or join up for a Township tour.
Day 14 Depart Cape Town.
Spend the day exploring Cape Town before your evening flight home. Or why not stay a little longer?!