Category Archives: Events

Garden Route Walking Festival 2017

“What a brilliant idea!” This was our first thought last year when we heard about the first Garden Route Walking Festival.  Those of us who live in the area know the almost unlimited options for hikers, birders, walkers and nature lovers that the Plettenberg Bay area has to offer, so a festival dedicated to getting out and exploring is so perfectly suited to our area. 

This year’s Garden Route Walking Festival is sponsored by Hi-Tec and includes 52 different walks over four days covering an area from Mossel Bay to Tsitsikamma. That’s 52 different walks: forest, beach, mountain, coastal Fynbos and everything in between – you can hike Robberg, explore Salt River or scale Peak Formosa, there are almost too many options! And that, alone, is a reason to cast your travel-planning eyes on Plett – there are literally too many choices, something for everyone. 

The creative minds behind the Garden Route Walking Festival have come up with some very unique walks too, so when we say “something for everyone”, we mean just that. There’s a yoga walk, a sketch walk and a mindfulness walk. Kids will love the underwater walk, “inner magic” children’s walk and the fancy dress sundowners walk. Walk from Nature’s Valley to Keurboomsstrand, sample the best coffee in Plett with a coffee walk or bravely take on the naked in nature walk. Do you see? Something for everyone. 

We’re looking for to this Easter Weekend and the Garden Route Walking Festival, so check out there full schedule here

If you’re looking for a multi-day slackpacking tour of the area, we recommend that you check out the new Plett Trail

Plett Rage Accommodation 2017

The dates for the annual Plett Rage Student Festival have been announced as 1st – 8th December. 

We are proud to have accommated students of the Plett Rage Festival for the past seven years and look forward to welcoming our eighth year of festival-goers. 

Amakaya Backpackers and Backpacker Apartments offers a variety of accommodation options in Plettenberg Bay from self catering apartments and private rooms to dorm rooms. There is something for everyone. 

Please send us an email on amakaya@telkomsa.net to enquire about your Plett Rage accommodation at Amakaya Backpackers. 

 

Plett Summer highlights

Summer is the time of year when Plett is just full of action: music, polo, beaches full of people, watersports, sporting events and so much more. An enormous amount of fun is packed into a single month in our coastal town. We’ve distilled some of the highlights of this Plett Summer into one blog post for those of you who aren’t able to be here during our high season – but before we begin, remember that (a) Plett Summer goes on well into March will spectacular weather and plenty to do and (b) the rest of the year is just as entertaining with our winelands, animal encounters, restaurants, adventure activities and festivals to keep you coming back well after the summer season has ended. 

To start you off, here’s a roundup of Plett Summer from our local tourism office, Plett Tourism: 

 

Plett Summer concerts: 

Get Lucky Summer – we’re very lucky to have South African sensations GoodLuck making Plettenberg Bay their home base for the summer.

Shows at The Barnyard – the original Barnyard is something of a legend and, hosting some of SA’s top musicians, is an excellent evening out for music and a picnic show. 

The Meadows Plettenberg – a new summer venue in Plett, the Meadows is fresh from the Plett Ragers and is hosting a slew of hot summer acts including the national We Love Summer series, Jeremy Loops and Goldfish for New Year’s Eve. 

Just some of our day time highlights throughout the Plett Summer

Plett Polo matches – daily polo matches at fields around Plett mean that the action never stops, there is even an SA/England international match on 29 December at Kurland Estate. 

Sabrina Love Ocean Challenge – the annual Sabrina Love Ocean Challenge, in aid of children with disabilities, is a favourite on the Plett Summer calendar. With a fun run/walk, MTB race, kayaking, kids event and the title ocean swim, there is something for everyone. 

Photo: Sirius Media

ClemenGold Hobie Regatta – another favourite, the regatta action happens mostly on the water, so find a good vantage point to watch the agile hobies battle it out. 

Ocean Sailing Charters – take a more relaxed sail across the bay with Ocean Sailing Charters where you can fish, swim, snorkel, eat, drink and take in the salty sea air and gently rolling swells…bliss. 

Plett Wine Tours

Sip and savour all the tastes of the Plett Winelands, learning a bit about each Plett wine farm as you are transferred around the vineyards by Plett Wine Tours. Grab a group of friends and make an unforgettable day trip of it. 

What is your favourite Plett Summer moment? If you’ve been with us over the summer season in the past, what would you most like to return for? 

How to make the most of Plett Summer

Summer in Plettenberg Bay can be a frantic time, visitors from all over the world, and all over South Africa make the holiday pilgrimage to our little seaside town for sun, sand, winelands and relaxation only to find that the rest of the country has followed suit. As Plett is a small village, with limited parking, restaurants and shops, this can make for some frustrated holiday-makers, so we’ve put together some simple tips to ensure that you get the rest and relaxation that you deserve on your summer holiday. 

There’s endless space, if you know where to look…

Plettenberg Bay can feel a bit crowded at this time of year – Central Beach is action-packed, restaurants are buzzing and shopping centres can be as stress-inducing as the big city. But take a walk around Robberg, head out to Salt River or stroll along Keurbooms Beach and you’ll get that sense of freedom, space and relaxation that you’ve been looking for. 

Take a wine tour

If you’ve spent the year struck in traffic and carting kids around, a tour of the Plett Winelands is just what you need. Sit back and relax as you’re driven from estate to estate, tasting MCC bubblies, rose and more while learning more about South Africa’s newest Wine of Origin region. 

Do your shopping early

There is every reason not to shop during the peak hours of the day. For starters, you want to make the most of your summer days lazing at the pool, zip-lining through the forest or enjoying the beach, not queuing in the grocery store. Secondly, getting to the shops early in the morning or later in the afternoon means you’ll have less of that queuing to do!

 

Don’t miss the fun, check out the holiday gig guide

From the Plett polo schedule to musical performances to the best recommendations for your summer holiday, the Plett Summer guide has it all. Click the image below to read the magazine online. 

Book at your favourite restaurant 

Restaurants book up quickly at this time of year, so book early to avoid disappointment. 

Keep it cool…at the polo

The polo season is a Plett Summer staple and, with polo on every day over the holidays, you don’t have an excuse not to enjoy the action and elegance of a polo match. You can choose to book a box with snacks and bubbly or pack a picnic and enjoy the match from the picnic area. 

 

Enjoy our beaches – we have five international Blue Flags! 

With five International Blue Flag beaches and one Blue Flag Boat Operator, our beaches and oceans are our greatest assets. We hope you enjoy spending time on our beaches and in our oceans. Please do be safe on our oceans: don’t drink and swim, only swim when there is a lifeguard on duty and watch this video on what to do if you’re caught in a rip current. 

We hope you have a very happy Plett summer! 

Bring out the bubbly – Plett Wine & Bubbly Festival

It’s Sasfin Plett Wine and Bubbly Festival time again this October – get to Plett for a weekend as chilled as our wines.

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We feel everyone deserves a break and what could be better than a wine festival – all locally produced wines and bubblies – served on the beach in Plettenberg Bay? The Sasfin Plett Wine and Bubbly Festival will introduce wine lovers to Plett’s Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Method Cap Classique on 8th and 9th October 2016 from the following delightful Plettenberg Bay wine estates:

Andersons Wine | Bitou Wines | Bramon Wine Estate

Kay & Monty Vineyards | Lodestone Wine & Olives

Luka Wines | Newstead Lund Family Vineyards

Packwood Wine Estate | Plettenvale Wine Estate | Redford Lane Wines

Book your tickets here: www.plettourism.com and stay with us at Amakaya Backpackers for a chilled, wine weekend.

Tickets are R200 per person, (or R350 for a weekend pass) and this year the festival introduces the new Wine Theatre with a series of guest speakers in a small, intimate theatre for those of you wanting a wine aficionado experience. Eat local and drink local with artisan cheeses, charcuterie and breads, sushi, savouries and of course – beautiful, succulent coastal oysters. Sip, and stroll and enjoy the sun and sea just steps from the Indian Ocean at Plett’s Central Beach.

Sasfin Plett Wine and Bubbly

Event information: 

DATE: 8 and 9 October
TIMES: 8th: 13h00 – 20h00 | 9th: 12h00 – 20h00
VENUE: Central Beach, Plett
COST: All tickets include 10 wine tasting coupons, R20 discount on a bottle of wine and commemorative glass. Additional wine coupons and food available for purchase during the festival.

 

If you are looking to explore the actual wine estates of the Plett Winelands, contact us about arranging a guided Plett Wine Tour

A video from Sasfin Plett Wine & Bubbly 2015 to whet your appetite

Plett Food Film Festival

Winter in Plettenberg Bay is often a quiet time. Although our days are fine and calm, the nights and mornings can be a bit fresh and Plett doesn’t quite have the same seaside summer vibe from May-September.  However, this is Plett’s official whale season and visitors can spend hours hiking Robberg, strolling the beach or on a marine safari enjoying the antics of the Southern Right and Humpback whales.

Now, here’s where things get interesting: over the last couple of years, Plett has played host to the new Plett MAD (Music, Art and Drama) Festival and, more specifically, the Plett Food Film Festival. This festival, dedicated to pairing classic food films with dishes from the movies. This year, Plett Tourism is presenting three delightful films over three days (11-13 July): Les Emotifs Anonymes (Romantics Anonymous), A Good Year and Like Water for Chocolate.

Plett Food Film Festival Image 1Monday 11th July at The White House – Les Emotifs Anonymes (Romantics Anonymous)

Love triumphs over social ineptitude in this charming film, with the seductive qualities of chocolate smoothing the way. Karen Dudley of The Kitchen fame soothes with food inspired by life and love. Feast upon gourmet french baguettes from Chez Laurent. Indulge in a chocolate fair to the lilting accordion of Stanislav Angelov.

Plett Food Film Festival Image 5Tuesday 12th July at The White House – A Good Year

Starring Russell Crowe, this film is the perfect backdrop to seven of Plett’s excellent wine estates, pairing their wines and bubbly with top Plett chefs. Wine, canapes, an artisanal Plett cheese table and an hilarious presentation by South Africa’s renowned DIY consultant, Suzelle. Wind down to the strains of the french accordion with Stanislav Angelov and a final glass of wine.
Complimentary tasting glasses are yours from Pam Golding Properties, hosting the evening’s tasting.

Plett Food Film Festival Image 9Wednesday 13th July at Emily Moon River Lodge – Like Water for Chocolate

A sultry night of sensuous film, and an abundant Mexican feast by Chef Alex Olivier of Emily Moon and latino trio Los Gitanos, to transport you to the magical realm of unrestrained flamenco.

BOOK TICKETS

 

Video of the Plett MAD and Plett Food Film Festivals 2015

Adventure Racing in Plett: Expedition Africa 2016

Now we know that the Garden Route is one of the best adventure spots in the world, but now the world will know it too after the Expedition Africa Adventure Race in May. Expedition Africa. The African leg of the World Adventure Racing Series, hits the Garden Route this May for an all-out battle of adventure where athletes trail run, paddle, cycle and transverse over 500km of Garden Route terrain in any way possible.

Not only will a number of Plett and Knysna teams be taking part in this epic battle but one team in particular, the Plett Adventure Racing Team, will be flying the Plett flag high! Teams are made up of 4 racers, in this case: team navigator Drew Scott, Kate Southey, Andrew Damp and Petrus Maree and they have been using the homeground advantage to train in forest, river and mountain in preparation for the Expedition Africa, Garden Route.

The Team

We’d like to wish the Plett Adventure Racing Team the best of luck for Expedition Africa 2016 – we’ll be rooting for you, guys! If you’d like to follow the team on the live tracking system, visit this website: Kinetic Events Africa– the race starts on 16 May 2016 or follow the action on #plettadventure and #expafrica2016.

Plett Adventure Weekend

Easter is going to be a very good time to visit Plettenberg Bay in 2016, in addition to the Pennypinchers Plett Adventure Weekend, Plett will also play host to a “first of its kind” Garden Route Walking Festival – with 52 walks over 5 days.

The Pennypinchers Adventure Weekend is a firm favourite for athletes and families in Plett and is now an annual Easter occurrence with a trio of events that are far more than your usual sporting event. Over the days of  26 & 27 March, the Adventure Weekend in Plett includes:

  • The Cairnbrogie Easter Trail Run:  this popular coastal run is a must-do for trail runners and amateurs alike. The event consists of 3 options: a 17-18km trail run, 12km run and a 5km family fun run. You couldn’t ask for a more perfect area to explore.
  • Cairnborgie Nite MTB Relay: a real challenge and thrilling for all participants, this is one for the books! There will also be a kids sunset fun ride before the relay.
  • Surfski Challenge: as with every year, there will be a doubles and singles challenge and will include a 20km and 10km route. Most exciting for surfski paddlers is the “round the blinders dash for cash“! This will be a short dash of about 1km and will be held on a knockout basis with heats drawn before the race. It should be incredibly exciting to watch from the beach!

For more information on bookings, contact James on muddyfoot@grcom.co.za

 

Garden Route Walking Festival

One of the Garden Route’s most appealing features is the wide range of walks and hikes through the forest, along the coast, into canyons and up mountains. This year, South Africa’s first dedicated walking festival will be held along the Garden Route this Easter, a time for celebrating family, nature, the outdoors, community and walking.

The Garden Route Walking Festival, which comprises 52 different walks over 5 days, clearly has something for everyone and ranges from George (near our Vic Bay Backpackers), through Wilderness and Sedgefield, Knysna, our Plettenberg Bay and the Tsitsikamma area.  Each area has something special to offer and caters for all levels of fitness with a variety of walks ranging from easy to strenuous.

Garden-Route-Walking-Fest

View the full programme

Some Plett walks to look out for over the weekend:

Friday 25th March 2016:

Kranshoek View Site Walk:

1st Stage: Level walk along coast through the fynbos to the view site and back – approx 40 mins.

2nd Stage: Gentle walk through the forest and back – approx 40 mins

Nature’s Valley:

Stage 1:Park at the top Groot rivier pass at the entrance de vasselot nature reserve. Walk along the ridge through beautiful fynbos to the view over nature’s valley and return. Approx 40 mins

Stage 2: Drive down to the river to walk among the giant yellow woods.

WESSA Frog Walk:

A walk down the lagoon looking for frogs

Aardtmoeders Land Art & Sundowners:

Visit the incredible community at Kranshoek and take a stroll down to the coast. Bring along your favourite drink and enjoy the sunset at the Eden to Addo Aartmoeders elephant rocks.

Harkerville Forest Walk:

This route takes us through the famous Harkerville Forest where we find delightful, huge, old Stinkwood and Yellowwood trees, amongst others. The trail also takes from dry forest areas to wet forest areas inhabited by a splendid display of well-established Tree ferns.

Saturday 26th March 2016:

Kranshoek View Site Walk:

1st stage: Level walk along coast through the Fynbos to the view site and back – approx 40 mins.

2nd stage: Gentle walk through the forest and back – approx 40 mins

Salt River Meander:

A gentle meander along the Salt River and up to the view-site

Salt-River-Plett

Sunday 27th March 2016:

Salt River Meander:

A gentle meander along the Salt River and up to the view-site

Robberg Point Walk:

Robberg Nature Reserve offers a variety of plant,bird, mammal and marine life to the visitor which is complimented by breath taking views of Plettenberg Bay,Tsitsikamma Mountains and the Indian Ocean.

As an experienced nature guide I will be able to provide interesting information on the fauna,flora,geological and  archaeological,historical interests of Robberg Nature Reserve to enhance your experience.

Robberg Point Walk is 9.2km

Brown-hooded Kingfisher Trail:

About 6km there and back in riverine forest along the Duiwe and Klein Keurbooms Rivers, finishing at a pool and waterfall. Good birding opportinities. There is a path throughout, with some short slopes and river crossings.

Kids Pirate Beach Walk:

About 6km there and back in riverine forest along the Duiwe and Klein Keurbooms Rivers, finishing at a pool and waterfall. Good birding opportinities. There is a path throughout, with some short slopes and river crossings.

Nature’s Valley to Robberg Rocks:

An extreme beach walk including forest, swimming and the entire length of Nature’s Valley, Keurboomstrand and Robberg beaches in one day. Tea stops and lunch breaks along the way at restaurants. +/- 28km a worthwhile adventure! Walkers will need to swim to cross lagoon. Very early start. Late finish.

Plettenberg Bay Heritage Walk:

Discover the fascinating history of Plettenberg Bay. A gentle stroll with excellent guide.

A Vertical Walk – Abseil:

A chance to abseil and “walk vertically” down the cliffs of Salt River. A wild out there adventure for the whole family.

Sunset Saunter on Robberg Beach:

The easiest walk offered, a gentle saunter from Sanctuary Beach on Robberg to the Robberg rocks and back. Bring a drink and toast to life.

Monday 28th March 2016:

Birding Walk:

The walk will start at the Nature Valley Campsite where we will do some birding in the campsite and then walk a section of the a known trail in the Forest.

This will consist of  forest birding and bird species such as Yellow-throated Woodland Warblers, Cape Batis, Knysna Turaco,Black backed Puffback, Green-backed Cameropteras, Bar-throated Apalis, Chorister Robin- Chats, Lemon Doves and Terrestrial Brownbuls can be seen to name a few.

The will be no entrance fee to the De Vasselot Campsite, but there will be a daily fee per person if you decide to have a picnic or braai in the campsite.

Hiking-Plettenberg-Bay

The distance will cover approximately 4km.

Robberg Gap Trail:

The Robberg Peninsula is not only a Nature Reserve but a Marine Protected area and a National monument, which is situated approximately 8km South of Plettenberg Bay.

Robberg Nature Reserve offers a variety of plant,bird, mammal and marine life to the visitor which is complimented by breath taking views of Plettenberg Bay,Tsitsikamma Mountains and the Indian Ocean.

As an experienced nature guide I will be able to provide interesting information on the fauna,flora,geological and  archaeological,historical interests of Robberg Nature Reserve to enhance your experience.

Robberg Gap Trail is 2.1 km and takes approximately 2 hours to complete.

Qolweni Quest Walk:

A walk through Qolweni with local guide reveals a day in the life of this township’s residents.

Peak Formosa:

A full day experience and tough climb with exposure in places. Stand on the summit of the highest peak in the region and the Tsitsikamma mountains and view the entire expanse of the Garden Route. Lead by Festival Founder Galeo Saintz

Whiskey Creek:

An adventure into Whiskey Creek in the Crags.

Tuesday 29th March 2016:

Vineyards and Wine Walk at Bramon:

The Crags is wine country on the Garden Route, some and walks through the vineyards and taste the magic of the vine.

High Tea Walk through Redford Conservancy

A circular walk on a clover leaf route through the Redford House Estate ending with tea under the branches of oak trees.

Contact us for more information and availability during this time: bookings@amakaya.co.za

 

 

 

 

Colourful Plett Summer

Summer in Plett is always a beautiful thing – although the roads may be busy and the beaches packed – there is a sense of seaside holiday that undercuts every day in Plettenberg Bay. While we are fortunate enough to enjoy the beaches and winelands, activities and restaurants of Plett year-round, at Amakaya Backpackers we welcome the summer holiday makers for whom the colourful summer events below are created for. Add to the green forests, blue waters and skies and white sandy beaches the following colourful events that make Plett summer truly unforgettable:

Orange ClemenGold Hobie Regatta

Plett ClemenGold Hobie Regatta

Hobie cats are back in Plett and in a big way. With the ClemenGold Hobie Regatta now held annually in Plettenberg Bay – sailing has again become a large part of Plett’s Summer Calendar. Get down to Hobie Beach from 18-20 December for some fun in the sun!

Pink Sabrina Love Ocean Challenge

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Sabrina Love Ocean Challenge is one of Plett’s most beloved charity events. This year the challenge will be held earlier in the summer holidays from 21-23 December on Plett’s Central Beach and at Kurland and will include ocean swims, paddles, runs and cycles with events for serious athletes and family events too!

Ice Blue Castle Lite Republic of Extra Cold

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Castle Lite’s Republic of Extra Cold is a unique and epic event. Plett’s Stanley Island turns itself into a republic complete with citizens and president and brings some of South Africa’s top performers and DJ’s to “the island” for an unforgettable party night complete with different themed bars, main stage and beach fun on 28 December.

Colourful Plett’s Color Run

colour run-14

The Color Run must be one of the most popular events on the planet – held in beautiful Plettenberg Bay on 30 December – the happiest 5km on earth is a culmination of Plett’s colourful summer season for 5km of every colour and combination imaginable and is a healthy, happy event for the whole family.