SOUTH AFRICA – Tankwa Karoo Gravel Adventure

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13 – 23 November

OVERVIEW

Riding through the remote Karoo semi-desert, and specifically the ancient Tankwa Karoo basin, is a unique experience not available to many. This is a harsh place with temperatures that can soar as high as 40℃, and drop well below 0℃ at night.

Towns are generally at least 100 kilometres apart and connected by a network of varying quality dirt roads. Expect everything from super-smooth, hard-packed gravel, to loose sand, tyre-shredding rocks, and badly corrugated sections.

The roads are largely unmaintained, and left to the mercy of the weather. The region is very sparsely populated, and it is not uncommon to ride for an entire day without seeing another person. Your typical Karoo town is very small, but the people who live there are known for their generous hospitality and warmth.

We’ll be staying in a range of charming and quirky small-town accommodations, and eat traditional fresh local meals while immersing ourselves in Karoo culture. While each day’s stage will be challenging on riders and equipment alike, there will be enough respite to make this adventure rich and rewarding. A support vehicle will carry our luggage, and occasionally meet us with a freshly prepared lunch or coffee. On other days we’ll take our mid-ride lunches at local farms, meeting some families that have toiled there for generations. Our rides will take us through constantly changing geology with unforgettable vistas, and we’ll learn about the political and social history of this place. On this adventure you’ll experience the true Karoo – the spectacular vast and arid landscapes, and the charming and colorful characters that live here. This is a beautiful place.

 

Refund and cancellation
Where, for whatever reason, one person is obliged to withdraw, the person must give written notice to Projecting Adventure Cyclism.
Refund will be calculated with this penalty:

Within 45 days from date of departure the penalty fare is 10% of the total cost of the trip.
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Within 30 days from departure the penalty fare is 30% of the total cost of the trip.
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Within 21 days from departure the penalty fare is 60% of the total cost of the trip.
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Within 14 days from departure the penalty fare is 75 % of the total cost of the trip.
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After this date no refund will be given.

No refunds for those who will not show at the start or withdraw during the course of the tour.
No refunds for those who could not make the tour due to lack or inaccuracy of the personal travel documents (i.e Visa or Passport).

Traveler understands that some destinations pose more risk than other destinations due to weather conditions, political conditions and the geography of the region. Traveler acknowledges that factors such as, but not limited to, weather conditions, landslides, floods, flight cancelations or delays, strikes, labor troubles, failure of power, restrictive governmental laws or regulations, riots, insurrection, war or other reason of a like nature not the fault of Projecting Adventure Cyclism (hereinafter “Force Majeure Event”) can hinder, delay or even prevent the Traveler’s ability to make or complete the trip. Traveler acknowledges that the Projecting Adventure Cyclism shall not be liable to Traveler for any delay or cancelation of the trip due to a Force Majeure Event. Traveler shall not be entitled to a refund or any other payment for damages from the Projecting Adventure Cyclism in the event that the trip is cancelled or delayed due to a Force Majeure Event. Please note that we are never responsible for any airfare ticket expenses.
THE PRICE INCLUDE

- Support followed with basic mechanical assistance and luggage transport
- Travel insurance
- Hotel at Cape Town: hotel in a double room for the first two nights and last night
- Full board during the 6 stages
- Airport Transfer - Hotel - Airport on departure and arrival days
- Transfers Cape Town to Sutherland and Sutherland to Cape Town
- 6 days of cycling tours with two guides according to schedule
- Enter the parks or attractions as planned

THE PRICE DOES NOT INCLUDE

- Plane tickets
- Services, excursions and extra activities
- Possible tips
- Lunches and dinners at Cape Town
- Everything not present in "The price include"
11 days 5.500 m
680 km Medium-High
€ 2.500
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Good to know

Your Head Tour Guide

Willy Mulonia

We have over 15 Years
of experience

excellent care
and service

Guides & helpers speak
multiple
languages

Travel Stages

15 November – (4 hour drive) – Drive from Cape Town to Sutherland (stop on way for a special drink at Tjol Se Gat roadside bar).

Sutherland is one of the highest, and coldest, towns in South Africa and is home a famous Southern-hemisphere celestial observatory.

16 November – STAGE 1 – 136 km – 1.083 m – Sutherland to Fraserburg via Rante road (lunch stop at Rhenostervlei)

The Rante road is a spectacular route long the edge of the Karoo escarpment.

 

17 NovemberSTAGE 2 – 111 km – 438 m – Fraserburg to Williston (lunch stop at Langbaken farm, with home-made beer and cheese).

Williston a characterful town and we will stay at the Williston Mall, a crazy place full of rusted cars and old road signs.

18 NovemberSTAGE 3 – 130 km – 766 m – Williston to Middelpos (lunch stop in a remote riverbed).

Middelpos is one of the smallest owns in South Africa, and there is basically only a hotel and Police station.

19 NovemberSTAGE 4 – 110km – 968 m – Middelpos loop via Leliekrans and Rooiwal roads (lunch stop in a beautiful riverside glade)

 

The Leliekrans and Rooiwal roads follow a route through towering spectacular flat-taped mountains.

20 NovemberSTAGE 5 – 51 km – 367 m – Middelpos to Tankwa Karoo National Park (coffee stop on the top of Gannaga pass)

The Gannaga pass drops into the ancient Tankwa basin, a drained historic sea.

21 NovemberSTAGE 6 – 121 km – 1.851 m – Tankwa Karoo National Park to Sutherland (lunch stop on top of Ouberg pass)

 

The Ouberg pass climb is brutal, and this will be the toughest day by far, but with beautiful views.

22 November (4 hour drive) – drive from Sutherland to Cape Town (stop for lunch at Lord Milner Hotel in Matjiesfontein)

Matjiesfontein in not a town, but a old train station, and our final lunch at the historic Lord Milner Hotel will be a highlight.

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About your guide

Willy Mulonia, expert lonely traveler and cyclist for more than 30 years.
He made several solo expeditions, but the most important is without a doubt the 28,640 bike trip from Ushuaia (Patagonia) to Prudhoe Bay (Alaska).
He raced in the Crocodile Trophy (Australia) in ’98 and the famous IditaBike (Alaska) in 1999, 2000, 2018 & 2019 as well as many other mountain bike stage races all over the world.
In 2003 he founded the bike travel agency Progetto Avventura, now renamed Projecting Adventure Cyclism.
In 2010, with the help of all the team of PA-Cyclism he created the Mongolia Bike Challenge, one of the most important MTB stage race in the world.
Today you can find him guiding most the tour offered by Projecting Adventure Cyclism.

Extra information

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