Route 62 is one of the most beautiful travel routes in South Africa as well as one of the least known and least travelled ones. It offers the traveller on the way from Cape Town to Port Elizabeth an interesting and relaxing alternative to the busy N2 freeway, which leads, further south, through the coastal areas. Click for map
The country road meanders through the fertile valleys of the Klein Karoo, past rugged rock formations, the tops of which are covered in snow in winter. Time and again the road leads over steep passes, which open up to spectacular views of the wide land.
If you are not in too much af a hurry, you should leave the N1 in Paarl and choose the romantic mountain road via Wellington, Tulbagh, Ceres and Prince Alfred's Hamlet. In Worcester you cross the N1, and now the route will go in an eastern direction past Robertson and Ashton through the Klein Karoo. A detour to the nostalgic village of McGregor and the pretty Bonnievale (birth place of the writer and poet Breyten Breytenbach) at the Breede River is recommended.
The most beautiful part of the route starts in Montagu behind the Cogman's Pass. Montagu with its thermal baths and many other attractions is one of the highlights on Route 62. Departing from Montagu, one drives through typical Klein Karoo scenery to the picturesque town of Barrydale and further on to Ladysmith. This place at the foot of the Towerkop mountain is a paradise for hikers. The following villages of Zoar and Amalienstein are former mission stations. Calitzdorp is the centre of the South African Port wine production. Another highlight of the Route 62 is famous Oudtshoorn, the South African centre of ostrich breeding (detailed information under the Travel Area "Garden Route").
Coming from Oudtshoorn, you enjoy a scenic drive through the Outeniqua Mountains and reach the Garden Route at George, unless you choose to stay on the Route 62 and go via De Rust and Uniondale on to Port Elizabeth.
You find travel hints and accommodation along the Route 62 on the blue INFO page.
The towns and hamlets along the roughly 500 kilometre long stretch (Cape Town - Oudtshoorn) are all wealthy farming communities with friendly people, reasonably priced accommodation and excellent food.
Route 62 leads through the wine-growing areas of Wellington, Tulbagh, Worcester, Robertson and the Klein Karoo and is thus one of the longest wine routes in the world. Most of the wine farms welcome visitors for wine tasting and lunches.
Left photo: Ladismith. Top right: Cogman's Kloof. Bottom right: Outeniqua Mountains near Oudtshoorn