Travel Journal

Karoo Inn - Knysna - February 10-11-12

(Tuesday 19 February 2008) by Karin
An early start, we headed for the historic town of Graaff-Reinet. It is the fourth oldest European town in South Africa, and it has a superb architectural heritage with more than 220 buildings designated as national monuments. We visited two museums. First the Old Library with some prehistoric fossil reptiles from the Permian period and rock paintings. Then on to the Reinet house, a historical museum in the form of a period home.
We then crossed the mighty Outeniqua Mountains, barrier between the dry interior and the lush coastal Garden Route area. The vegetation becomes denser and lusher and before getting to the Knysna Inn, of course, in the middle of nowhere, hidden deep in the hard of the forest, we hobbled over another bumpy road with tree branches continually hitting the green monster.
After the usual welcome we unpacked our stuff in our log cabins and after a drink on the terrace overlooking the pool we had a delicious dinner and a nice time chatting on the terrace before turning in.
In the morning we drove to Tsitsikamma National Park where we took a hike along the otter trail, one of the most acclaimed hikes in South Africa. It hugs the coastline and we climbed up and down huge boulders. Huge waves crashed on the rocky precipices. Stunning. When we arrived at the waterfall it started to rain again so we quickly turned around as to not be caught in a bad storm. Luckily it didn't last too long and I slowly but surely made my way back to the departure point, often stopping to enjoy the views. An awesome hike. We then stopped at Bloukrans Bridge, the highest single span arch bridge in the world where the highest commercially operating bungy jump in the world operates. After some lunch at a cafe right on the rocks we walked out to the jumping-off point under the bridge but none of us jumped. It started pouring again so definitely not a very nice day to jump. And the waiting time was about 2 hours.
Dinner out at a seafood restaurant, what a treat.
A bit slow this morning I find the others chatting and having breakfast in the main building. Today we'll visit Knysna, the old woodcutter town, perched on the edge of a serene lagoon and surrounded by forests. We enjoyed a boat trip around the lagoon up to two sandstone cliffs, known as the Heads. The narrow channel between "the Heads' is treachourous and the sea was not very calm so we didn't venture out. Unfortunately this is not the dolphin and whale season :-(. The rest of the day we wandered around town (luckily the sun was back), shopping and using the internet before going to JJ's, a wonderful seafood restaurant in the harbor to watch the sunset and have a delicious meal followed by some drinks at Olde's.

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