George has become a major hub on the Garden Route. It has historic charm, a busy airport and excellent facilities. Enjoy lush mountain scenery and country attractions which are just 15 minutes from the Indian Ocean.
George is situated in a central position on the Garden Route between Mossel Bay, Oudtshoorn and Knysna. The town can be reached in 4 hours by car from Cape Town on the N2 highway or via other scenic inland road routes such as Route 62.
George Airport services the whole of the Garden Route and receives flights from most major centres in South Africa.
George is surrounded by lush valleys and located between the Outeniqua Mountains and the Indian Ocean (Victoria Bay or Herolds Bay). George is the capital of the Southern Cape and a busy administrative centre. The historic town is the 6th oldest in South Africa and hosts one of the campuses of Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University. George is part of the Cape Wildflower Kingdom and surrounded by forests, mountains and lakes.
George is a very convenient destination for family holidays and stopovers as it is central to popular Garden Route attractions. The town is easy to get to by road or air but it still has a lovely country atmosphere with many farm-style attractions. Combine this with its great outdoor and nature based activities and you have a winner.
On the flip-side George offers sophisticated amenities and a well-developed infrastructure so it is ideal for conferences, business meetings and teambuilding activities. Participants in business activities can have the best of both worlds when they include a range of excellent leisure pursuits such as golf and safari activities.
- Farms and markets - Take a cheese, dairy or craft brewery tour, go wine tasting, pick strawberries and Proteas, buy fresh organic farm produce or visit the Milkwood Village Friday Night Market or the Outeniqua Farmers Market every Saturday
- History - Enjoy a walking tour in town and see many national monuments, museums and interesting landmarks along the way and Khoisan Rock Art in the Outeniqua Nature Reserve
- Golf - Renowned 18-hole championship courses and short courses are available in George and at Herolds Bay, with at least 6 others to be found along the Garden Route
- Wildlife - go on malaria-free game drives or horse safaris and spot members of the Big Five. You could also go on an Elephant-back ride, visit a crocodile farm or enjoy a birding adventure at a local bird farm
- Nature - See exquisite Cape Flora in the Garden Route Botanical Garden and in the Outeniqua Nature Reserve or visit the Succulent Karoo further inland
- Scenic journeys - Drive the Seven Passes Road through indigenous forest (which was the old road to the town of Knysna) or head for the Montague Pass; enjoy the wonders of the Outeniqua Power Van as it travels through magnificent scenery on an historic rail route (departures from the Outeniqua Transport Museum in George).
- Outdoor activities and sports - Go biking and hiking on several trails in the area including the famous Outeniqua Trail (book months in advance), enjoy horse riding, quad biking, abseiling or canoeing on the Kaaimans River; sports facilities include tennis, squash, bowls, indoor climbing, fishing and yachting
- Art and craft - Visit art galleries and craft outlets or catch a show at the theatre
George has a very stable Mediterranean type climate with low rainfall and seldom experiences extremes in temperatures, so it is a great place for holidays and winter retreats. Periodic water restrictions are sometimes in place to preserve resources.
If you love delicious cream teas and activities like picking strawberries then you will love George! Fun family activities for kids and interesting farm and craft brewery tours are popular attractions. You'll enjoy great country hospitality and wonderful fresh produce.
If you want a change of scenery then you can take a short drive to the coast and spend some time at Victoria Bay or Herolds Bay and go swimming and surfing. Alternately, enjoy a range of magnificent hikes or visit game reserves for safari activities.
For an unforgettable scenic journey take a picnic on the Outeniqua Power Van for an historic railway ride through the surrounding countryside. George caters for every kind of budget and you're bound to find just what you need either in town or in the country. There are camp sites and friendly backpackers, cosy guest houses and mountain cottages as well as classic hotels and 5 star resorts.
What You Need to Know
You can visit the annual Cheese Festival in George which takes place in July.
Fancourt Hotel and Country Club is a premier resort with 5 star facilities including 3 golf courses and 4 restaurants.
The Victorian-style King George Hotel overlooks the George Golf course and offers old-fashioned attention and service for business and leisure guests.
Protea Hotel Outeniqua is a small and elegant hotel in the centre of the town which is within walking distance of top restaurants and activities.