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General Info

Garden Route Weather

The Garden Route has a Mediterranean Maritime climate, with moderately hot summers, and mild to chilly winters. It is one of the richest rainfall areas in South Africa. Most of the rains occurs in the winter months, brought on by the humid sea-winds from the Indian ocean. The Garden Route's temperate weather falls between two climatic regions of summer and winter rainfall so it rains mostly at night which keeps the area perennially green.

Spring: You can feel spring in the air by the end of August and into September. October can be quite mixed because just when you think summer has arrived, another cold front moves in.

Summer: The months of November to March are warmer, with December to February seeing mid-summer daily temperatures of about 24-30°C.

Autumn: Temperatures start cooling down from about April but it can still be very pleasant until June.

Winter: June, July and August are the winter months. The days may be bright and warm, but it gets cold in the evening.

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Safety Information

ACCOMMODATION

It is recommended that you:

  • Never Leave your luggage unattended.
  • Store Valuables in your hotel's safety deposit box.
  • Keep your room locked at all times.
  • Hand in your room keys or cards whenever you leave your hotel.

SIGHTSEEING AND ENTERTAINMENT

It is reccommended that you:

  • Use registered, qualified tour guides.
  • Don't leave handbags under tables, on the backs of chairs or on restroom hooks.
  • Travel in groups, especially if you are visiting a nightclub, bar or shebeen you haven't been to before.
  • Don't make use of train services at night, if at all possible.

MONEY AND TRAVEL DOCUMENTS

It is reccommended that you:

  • Travel with certified copies of your valuable documents, and keep originals in a safe place.
  • Countersign no more than half your traveler's cheques.
  • Seperate your cash and credit cards, and don't carry all your cash/ traveler's cheques with you during the day.
  • Rather store half of them in your hotel room safe.
  • Don't allow strangers to assist you wit ATM transactions. If your card gets stuck, immediately call that ATM'S helpline number.
  • Be alert, and never turn your back while your ATM card is in the machine.
  • Report lost passports and visas, without delay, to the South African Police Services (SAPS).Your country's embassy or consulate can be contacted through the Tourist Victim Support Programme.

MOUNTAIN TIPS

  • Do not walk alone. Always ensure that you are in a group of at least 4 people.
  • Take your mobile phone with the emergency number punched in. Ensure it is Hidden.
  • Always let someone know which route you will take and how long you will be.
  • If you get lost, stay where you are.
  • Be aware of your surroundings.
  • Always take rain gear and a jersey.
  • Take water, sunblock, wear a hat and take a snack.
  • Maps: these are available in leading book stores and from TMNP offices.
  • If you are confronted by a criminal don't resist. Handover your goods.

AT THE BEACH

  • Always swim in areas supervised by a lifeguard.
  • Never Swim Alone
  • Don't dive into unfamilliar waters-what may seem deep could be very shallow. Feet first is safer.
  • Protect your skin from over exposure to UVA and UVB rays by wearing waterproof sunscreen with a high protection factor of 20+. Avoid the sun between the hottest times of the day:11h00-15h00.
  • Drink plenty of water regularly to avoid dehydration even if you don't feel thirsty. Your body needs water to keep cool and to replace lost salts through sweating.

ON THE ROAD

It is recommended that you:

  • Familiarise yourself with local rules of the road. Remember, South Africa is a left-hand Drive country.
  • Plan your route and fuel consumption in advance. Fuel can only be paid for with cash. Credit cards are not accepted.
  • Have phone numbers of your destination on hand, in case you get lost.
  • Keep the car doors locked at all times, the car windows wound up and any valuables locked in the boot.
  • Never pick up strangers or ask them for directions. Rather go to the nearest business or petrol station, if you get lost.
  • Pay special attention to speed limits, road signs and traffic markings.
  • It is compulsory to carry a translation of your driver's license, if it has been printed in a foreign language.

IN THE STREET

It is recommended that you:

  • Obtain a map, and plan your route befor you set out on an excursion.
  • Consult your hotel or nearest Visitor Information Centre for a reliable taxi service, if required.
  • Always keep your luggage of belongings where you can see it, at any transport hub.
  • When crossing the street, use pedestrian crossings where possible and be aware of oncoming motorists at all times. Look right, look left and look right again before crossing.
  • Explore in groups and stick to well-lit, busy streets, especially at night.
  • Please don't give money to street children. If you wish to assist them in a meaningful way, contact any Visitor Information Centre to obtain a list of organisationswho would be most grateful for the assistance.

IN THE CASE OF AN UNFORTUNE INCIDENT

Although incidents of crime against tourists happen rarely in South Africa, tourists should still be aware of the basic emergency procedures to follow should anything happen. It is recommended that you:

  • Go to your nearest safe and public place.
  • Call the Police Emergency Number (10111), which is free from a phone box or landline, and briefly explain what happened.
  • If you are using a mobile phone, call 112 and your call will be transferred to the appropriate emergency service.
  • If you have been injured, the call centre will dispatch an ambulance to take you to the nearest hospital. Alternatively you can call the National Ambulance Service (10177)

Public Holidays

01 January - New Year's Day

21 March - Human Rights Day

10 April - Good Friday

13 April - Family Day

27 April - Freedom Day

01 May - Workers Day

16 June - Youth Day

9 August - National Women's Day

10 August - Public Holiday

24 September- Heritage Day

16 December - Day of Reconciliation

25 December - Christmas Day

26 December - Day of Goodwill

Consulates in South Africa

American Consulate :

Tel: +27 (0)21 702-7300

Fax: +27 (0)21 702-7493

Physical Address: 2 Reddam Ave, Westlake, 7945, Cape Town

Postal Address: PostNet Suite 50, Private Bag x26, Tokai, 7966

Website: http://southafrica.usembassy.gov/index.html

 British Consulate:

Tel: +27 (0)21 405 2400

Mon-Thu: 08.00 - 16.30, Fri: 08.00 - 13.00

Physical Address: 15th Floor, Southern life Centre, 8 Riebeeck Street, Cape Town

Postal Address: P O Box 500, Cape Town, 8000

Website: http://ukinsouthafrica.fco.gov.uk/en/

 Australian High Commission:

Tel: +27 (0)12 423 6000

Fax: +27 (0)12 342 8442 (Admin & Consular)

Physical Address: 292 Orient Street, Arcadia, PretoriaPostal Address: Private Bag X150, Pretoria, 0001, South Africa

Email: pretoria.info@dfat.gov.au

Website: www.southafrica.embassy.gov.au/pret/home.html

 French Consulate:

Tel: +27 (0)21 423 1575

Fax: +27 (0)21 424 8470

Physical Address: 78 Queen Victoria Street, Cape Town 8001Postal Address: P.O. Box 1702, Cape Town 8000

Email: fconscap@iafrica.com

Website: http://www.consulfrance-lecap.org/sommaire.php3?id_rubrique=2

 Belgium Consulate:

Tel : + 27 (0)21 419 4690 Mon - Fri 09.00 - 16.00

Fax : + 27 (0)21 421 1121

Physical Address: Thibault Square, 19th floor, Foreshore, Capetown

Postal Address: PO Box 2717, Foreshore, Cape town, 8000Emergency: - out of office hours (not for visa) 073-77 24559

Email: capetown@diplobel.fed.be

Website: http://www.diplomatie.be/capetown/

 German Consulate:

Tel: +27 (0)21 405 3000 Mon to Fri: 9:00 to 12:00

Fax: +27 (0)21 421 0400

Physical Address: 19th Floor, Triangle House, 22 Riebeek Street, Cape Town 8001

Postal Address: PO Box 4273, Cape Town, 8000

Tel Passport & Visa Section: +27 (0)21 405 3020/40 Mon to Thurs 14:00 -16:00

Fax Passport & Visa Section: +27 (0)21 405 3010

Emergencies: +27 (0)83 325 6513 (only after office hours)

Email: info@kapstadt.diplo.de

Website: http://www.kapstadt.diplo.de/Vertretung/kapstadt/en/Startseite.html

 Netherlands Consulate:

Tel: +27 (0)21 421 5660

Fax: +27 (0)21 418 2690

Physical Address: 100 Strand Street, Cape Town 8001Postal address: PO Box 346, Cape Town 8000

Email: kaa@minbuza.nl

 Royal Norwegian Consulate:

Tel: +27 (0)21 418 1276

Fax: +27 (0)21 418 6068

Physical Address: 2805 ABSA Building, 2 Riebeek Street, Cape Town 8001

Postal Address: PO Box 4446, Cape Town 8000

Email: bjorg.wakeham@worldshipping.co.za

 Italian Embassy:

Tel: +27 (0)21 487 3900 Mon, Tue & Fri 09.00-11.30,

Wed 09.00-12.00 & 14.00-15.30, Thurs closed

Fax: +27 (0)21-424 0146

Physical Address: 2 Grey's Pass, Gardens, Cape Town

Postal Address: PO Box 15865, Vlaeberg, 8018

Email: consolato.capetown@esteri.it

Website: http://www.conscapetown.esteri.it/Consolato_Capetown

 Swedish Consulate:

Tel: +27 (0)21 418 1276

Fax: +27 (0)21-418 6068

Physical Address: 2805 ABSA Centre, 28th floor, 2 Riebeek Street, Cape Town

Postal address: PO Box 4446, Cape Town, 8001, South Africa

E-mail: norsksvensk@mweb.co.za

Website: http://www.swedenabroad.com/Start_25632.aspx

 Swiss Consulate/Embassy:

Consulate General of Switzerland

Embassy of Switzerland (Jan-Mar)

Tel: +27 (0)21 418 3665 Tel: +27 (0)21 418 3669 (Embassy Jan-Mar)

Fax: +27 (0)21 418 3688 Fax: +27 (0)21 418 1569 (Embassy Jan-Mar)

Physical Address: Nr.1 Thibault Square 26th Floor , (Cnr. Long Str/Strijdom) , Cape Town

Postal Address: Consulate General of Switzerland , P.O. Box 563, Cape Town 8000, South Africa

Email: cap.vertretung@eda.admin.ch

Website: http://www.eda.admin.ch/capetown

 New Zealand High Comission

Block C, Hatfield Gardens, 1110 Arcadia Street

Tel: +27 (0)12 342 8656, +27 (0)12 342 8659

Fax: +27 (0)12 342 8640

Email: nzhc@global.co.za

Website: www.nzembassy.com/southafrica

 Consulate General of the Czech Republic:

Tel.: +27 (0)21 797 9835, +27 (0)21 797 9860

Fax: +27 (0)21 797 2776

Physical Address: 2 Fleetwood Avenue, Claremont, 7708, Cape Town

Email: capetown@embassy.mzv.cz

 Office of Consul of Japan:

Tel: +27 (0)21 425 1695

Fax: +27 (0)21 418 2116

Physical Address: 2100 Main Tower Standard Bank Centre Heerengracht Cape Town 8001

Website: http://www.mofa.go.jp/index.html

 Russian Federation Consulate General:

Tel: +27 (0)21 418 3656/7

Fax: +27 (0)21 419 2651

Physical address: 10-th floor, Southern Life Center, 8 Riebeeck Street, Cape Town

Postal address: PO Box 6743, Pretoria, 0001

E-mail: rusco@icon.co.za

Website: http://www.russianembassy.org.za/index.html

 Canadian High Commission:

Tel: +27 (0) 21 423 5240

Fax: +27 (0) 21 423 4893

Emergency assistance

(call collect - Canadian nationals only): 091 613 996 8885

Physical Address: 19th floor, South African Reserve Bank Building, 60 St. George's Mall

Postal Address: P.O. Box 683 Cape Town, 8000

Email: cptwn@international.gc.ca

Website: http://www.canadainternational.gc.ca/southafrica-afriquedusud/splash.aspx

 Chinese Consulate-General in Cape Town

Tel: +27 (0)21 674 0579

Physical Address: Rhodes Ave. Newlands, Cape Town 7700, South Africa

Postal Address: P.O. Box 3714, Cape Town 8000

Email: chinaconsul_ct_za@mfa.gov.cn

Website: http://capetown.china-consulate.org/eng/