They say that life is a cycle. But, in Knysna, life is more of a mountain biking experience.
The indigenous forests, surrounding farmlands, rolling hills covered in Cape fynbos and open roads overlooking the crystalline waters of the Indian ocean offer MTB’ers every kind of riding experience imaginable. From intense single track dirt racing to easy, Sunday afternoon family outings, Knysna and the surrounding area is MTB country.
Competitive pedallers can compete in a selection of single day or stage races in and around the Knysna area throughout the year. February sees the epitome of stage racing with the three day GR300. The race takes riders through 300kms of incredible natural beauty with astounding views to a race village that offers great food, cool beverages and well-deserved massages. The RECM 200 takes place in June and, at only 200km, is just like the GR300, only a bit lighter on the legs.
The 7 Passes MTB at the end of April takes riders from the George NMMU campus all the way to the Knysna Waterfront via the seven passes traversing the forests between the sister towns. The second day offers a fully assisted tour back to George.
South Africa’s premier sporting and lifestyle event, the Pick n Pay Knysna Oyster Festival, takes place during the first ten days of July and includes the Momentum Weekend Argus Knysna Cycle Tour presented by Rotary. This all-time favourite event offers both a road- and a MTB race and has become a staple on the South African cycling calendar.
September sees the Dr Evil Classic three-day stage race taking place in the beautiful area east of Knysna (including Wittedrift and the Crags), and is closely followed by the iconic Karoo to Coast 100km Mountain Bike Challenge. This race allows riders to enjoy the change in scenery from the semi-arid surroundings of Uniondale to the lush coastal forests of Knysna.
Entry to most of these races are already open, so click on the links above to secure your spot.
But it’s not all about competitive racing. Riders can enjoy the available routes throughout the year. Push your limits and top your personal best on one of the single tracks; take the family or your band of brothers (or circle of sisters) on a fun, easy outride; or even get the office to tackle a team building cycling session.
The Knysna Lakes District is right in the middle of SANParks’ Garden Route National Park. This breathtakingly beautiful, thickly forested area offers amazing tracks and trails available to discover on your own. The Harkerville, Farleigh and Homtini routes offer riders of varying capabilities a variety of enjoyable, yet challenging rides. Riders may have to obtain entry licenses, so please check their website for more information.
Riders of all ages will enjoy over 20km’s of hand-built single tracks at the Garden Route Trail Park. The trails snake through the forests and over the rivers of the Karatara area outside Sedgefield, and the park also features a pumptrack with fun built in.
Tony Cook Adventures offers guided mountain bike tours catered to all fitness levels. Half-day, full-day and overnight tours take riders on amazing rides promising loads of fun. Or, for those who prefer free-wheeling to pedalling, Knysna Hike & Bike invites riders to join them on heritage tours of Knysna, the Heads or the Knysna Forest. And, our personal favourite, they also offer a wine tasting ride through the Plettenberg Bay winelands!
If you decide to test your pedal-mettle on our challenging single tracks, or to take it easy on a wine tasting trip, you’ll find your ideal accommodation at www.exploreknysna.com. Click through to find accommodation to not only suit your tastes and your pocket, but that offers safe storage and cleaning facilities for your biking gear.
It’s time that you experienced Knysna’s MTB adventures, but you can only ride them if you’re here… so come one, explore Knysna.