It is often that most travelers will relax for a day at Port Elizabeth before their Garden Route road trip, and this is what we have done before the start of the our trip. And believe me, it is highly advisable, especially for a designated driver, driving and traveling together can became tiresome.
From Port Elizabeth direction, our first stop on the Garden Route is the Storms River Village, where the infamous Tsitsikamma National Park is located.
As an avid “mild” adrenaline junkie (I categorized myself as mild because there is certain adventure activities I will avoid if possible, bungee for example), Garden Route is my favourite trip when looking for fun activities to do. From as easy as hiking, cycling, super fun canyoning/kloofing, ziplining/canopy tour to as extreme as bungee jumping off the world’s highest commercial bungee bridge (which I will avoid), most of the action packed activities are found at Storms River.
Up early in the morning we have arrived at the office of Tsitsikamma Canopy Tour® at the Storms River Village. What I love about this tour is that this Fair Trade company supports the local community, it only keeps 43% of the profits and the rest goes into the community projects.
We were welcomed by a group of young and bubbly guides at their “briefing” office, which they explained all safety rules for the tour and dressing us up with safety gears. After briefing, we hopped onto the truck for the canopy tour, two guides and one photographer accompanied us during the tour. The first two zip lines are shorter for warm ups, afterwards all the zip lines are much faster and longer. During the tour you either scream your heart content or you pretend you are the king/queen of the jungle.
The guides are helpful, informative and entertaining. As my friend Mart is a bit scared of height so they did tried to ease her nerves away (by pushing her off the platform on the count of 2 instead of 3). The tour is not only about zip lining from tree to tree but the guides also shared stories and information of the forest with us.
The highlight of the tour is the spectacular view. I really cannot explain how breathtaking the indigenous forest is and how huge the yellowwood trees are. The platforms are built around these giant Outeniqua Yellowwood trees and some are as old as 700 years old! Because the tour is eco-friendly, even the platforms on the treetop does no harm as they don’t drill or nail the trees.
The whole tour last for about 2.5-3 hours, with a total of 10 ziplines and a light meal after all the slidings. In general I found the tour relatively safe and fun (if you do not have a height problem). Definitely a must-do when at the Storms River Village.
We finished the canopy tour at 12pm, but we later scheduled my most anticipated activity, Kayak & Lilo with Untouched Adventures at 2pm (coming up in my next blogpost), in between the 2 hours we decided to check out the other sightseeing landmark such as the big tree and Storms River Bridge.
Tsitsikamma Canopy Tours
Address: 101 Darnell St, Storms River, 6308
Tel: 042 281 1836
Operating Hours: Open 7 days a week. 8am – 5pm