With the growing popularity of gravel riding and bike touring, the Cape Cycle Routes initiative has been launched by the Western Cape Government. They have put together several routes, now 5 in total, that take riders on a tour though the sights, smells, and sounds of the beautiful Western Cape. The Karoo Crossing is the most recent route to be added. It links the towns of Calitzdorp and Knysna by a 4-6 day journey crossing in and out of the Karoo over the famed Swartberg pass and through the breathtaking Meiringspoort pass, some of the most remarkable scenery in the Cape! We will be showcasing the Karoo Crossing route in our upcoming season 3 of ALL RIDE and it is looking to be truly incredible. Make sure to subscribe so that you don't miss it! For some more info on the route, have look at the press release below.
This route has unique charm and every road sign leading to a town by gravel or tarred road will give cyclists the opportunity to journey through the Central and Klein Karoo passing through historic towns boasting beautiful Victorian, Cape Dutch and Georgian architecture and along winding mountain passes boasting fascinating legends. They will also have the opportunity to appreciate the heritage of the Karoo told through rock art paintings and engravings dating back thousands of years. And as the sun sets over the open Karoo landscape, cyclists can make their way under the starry night sky, discovering that the Karoo is equally as beautiful at night as during the day.
During the event, Premier Winde and Minister Maynier also handed out ten bicycles to the Prince Albert Community Trust as part of the Provincial Sustainable Transport Programme, run by the Department of Transport and Public Works and which aims to provide access to bicycles to improve access and mobility of users. This project is implemented through a consortium of partners which include Qhubeka Charity, the Pedal Power Association and the Bicycling Empowerment Network.
The Prince Albert Community Trust is a developmental agency that focuses on children and youth to empower them to create a new life trajectory.
Minister Maynier said: “It is wonderful to be here today at the opening of the Karoo Crossing which is the fifth leg of the Cape Cycle Routes tour in the Western Cape. And our aim here is not only to attract more adventure tourists, but also to showcase the great attractions and experiences in small towns and rural communities across the Western Cape.”
Premier Winde said: “The route we launched in the Karoo today is the fifth in a series of cycle routes across the province which allow for commuters and tourists to enjoy the wide-open spaces of the Western Cape. With the summer season approaching, we encourage people to get out and explore the province by venturing off the beaten track and to stop along the way and enjoy some of the best of small town hospitality. This will help support the tourism and hospitality sector which is a significant job creator, especially in our non-rural areas, and help us to save jobs in the province."
Executive Mayor of Prince Albert, Goliath Lottering, said: “The initiative is a great one, after the devastating effects of the lockdown since March 2020. It is definitely a very positive thing for the community when we do cycling in this area as we will definitely attract a lot of tourists. Today is already a boost for us, having so many people in town, who have slept over and spent some money at the local restaurants. For the Prince Albert community and for the municipality this is really a great initiative and going forward we want to build around it because our economic drivers in this area are tourism and agriculture.”
For more information about the route and others, visit www.capecycleroutes.co.za