SA Insider Guide: Easter school holiday events in the Garden Route

2017-02-05 19:29 - Louzel Lombard Steyn
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It feels as if 2017 has just kicked off, and we're already making plans for the upcoming Eastern school holidays. 

If you've been smart about taking leave this year, you could be one of the lucky people to now have most of the first school holiday, from 31 March to 17 April, off. 

HAVE YOU SEEN: 2017 Public Holidays: How to score all the days for a little leave

To help you make the most of the family time, we've lined up the best events, gigs and things to do on the Garden Route for the Easter school holiday.

School starts again on Tuesday, 18 April, so be sure to cram in as much of these epic summer events before the slide to winter starts. 

Here is our guide to all that you can see, do, taste and explore:

31 March to 9 April

SEE: Visit the Le Roux Town House Art Experience – for a dose of art and culture, visit the historical Townhouse Museum to see where local farmers found their rest after a hard day of road tripping. The house was built in 1909, when Oudtshoorn was in the midst of the second Ostrich Feather Boom from 1900-1914. 

DO: Korentepoort dam is located about 16km outside of Riversdale, perfect for a chilled-out afternoon of swimming, picnicking and watersports. 

TASTE: Kasselshoop's handcrafted cheeses are an absolute must-try. And if you're into olives, Botterkloof has a wide array of Olive Products - both located en route to Stilbaai. 

EXPLORE: Get wild with the Afri River Canyon water and climbing experience in the heart of The Crags in Plettenberg Bay.

10 April to 16 April 

SEE: One of the best views on the Garden Route, perhaps even the country - The Lookout Deck sits two stories higher than the open Indian Ocean, directly on the Keurbooms Lagoon and Lookout Beach. It's the perfect place to see the sun set. 

DO: Join some oceanic explorers on 11 April at the Garden Route Walking Festival's Moonlight Meander, a unique encounter with walking on the beach at night to discovering the fascinating life in the Intertidal Zone. 

TASTE: For a luxury wining and dining experience in the evening – watch the sun set over the valley at the beautiful Emily Moon River Lodge. Dine on the veranda and see wildlife come out to explore the wetlands and hills. 

EXPLORE: The iconic annual Klein Karoo Nasionale Kunstefees or KKNK takes place in Oudtshoorn from 14 to 23 April. Also see: Four South African Festivals worth travelling for this Easter

FRIDAY, 14 April

SEE: The well-loved Sedgefield Slow Festival takes place over Easter weekend. Take the family along and make it a weekend of seeing everything the GR has to offer.

DO: Easter on the Cape Garden Route is time for celebrating family, nature, the outdoors, community and walking. Take part in the Garden Route Walking Festival's Island Bird Walk taking off from the Transkaroo restaurant in Groot Brak. 

TASTE: Head to the Milkwood Evening Market in the Milkwood Village, Wilderness for some cold beers, delicious grub and live music from 16:00 to 21:00. 

EXPLORE: The Tsitsikamma Canopy Tour is built on platforms in magnificent Tsitsikamma indigenous rainforest, and zipping through the age-old Outeniqua trees will give you the perfect vantage point from where to spot the elusive Knysna loerie. 

SATURDAY, 15 April 

SEE: On Saturday mornings from 07:30 to 12:00, the Wild Oats Community Farmers Market in Sedgefield is the epitome of laid-back Garden Route living. 

DO: Join the Garden Route Walking Festival's Buffalo Bay Beach Trail, meandering along the beach and into the coastal forest with interpretive guide Anne Centner.

TASTE: The Outeniqua Farmer's Market in George is a must-do for delicious food and homemade produce for take-away, every Saturday from 08:00 to 14:00.

EXPLORE: Get the adrenaline pumping by throwing yourself down nearly 200 meters into a river from the highest commercial bungee jump in the world

SUNDAY, 16 April

SEE: The Knysna Forest is arguably the most magical place in the country. Here, despite dense human populations and agriculture, elusive creatures of the bush still populate the woods. See if you can spot an elephant while marveling at the Big Trees

DO: Go and visit and learn about the beautiful animals to be found in this local hotspot -  The Cango Wildlife Ranch in Oudtshoorn this Easter.

TASTE: If you're after a one-stop-shop for cheese, wine and all things divine - in a family friendly environment - Jakkalsvlei Wine Farm is just the spot.

EXPLORE: Join the Garden Route Walking Festival's Secret Elephants Forest Experience with Gareth Patterson, award-winning wildlife expert, and author of the acclaimed books, My Lion’s Heart and The Secret Elephants, which tells of Gareth’s rediscovery of the Knysna elephants. 

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