Amazing Kayaking & Lilo Adventure in Tsitsikamma National PArk | South Africa

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Last updated Jul 26, 2023

Kayaking & lilo adventure in Tsitsikamma National Park are a fantastic way to explore the stunning beauty of the park’s coastal region. Tsitsikamma National Park is located on the Garden Route in South Africa and is known for its dramatic landscapes, lush forests, and pristine coastline.

A kayaking & lilo adventure in Tsitsikamma Park typically involves a guided tour that takes you along the Storms River mouth, where the river meets the Indian Ocean. The overall experience typically takes 2.5 to 3 hours.  It is an adventure that should not be missed when on the Garden Route.

Kayaking & Lilo Adventure in Tsitsikamma National Park
Storms River Gorge | Kayaking & Lilo Adventure in Tsitsikamma National Park

Booking the Adventure

We booked the kayak & lilo adventure in the Tsitsikamma National Park through Untouched Adventures. It was an easy reservation to make online. They are conveniently located inside the national park close to the launching location. Additional adventures offered by Untouched Adventures is extended kayak & lilo adventure that takes you deeper into the gorge and guided snorkeling trips.

Cost of Kayaking & Lilo Adventure

Kayak & Lilo AdventureR750
Aqua Booties (optional)R50
Wetsuit Rental (optional)R90
Park Entrance FeeR280
Total CostR1030 or R1170 (with all the options)
Cost and Inclusions | Kayaking & Lilo Adventure in Tsitsikamma National Park

Getting to the Tsitsikamma National Park

Tsitsikamma National Park is located just north of Plettenberg Bay. The access road to the national park is accessed from road N2. During the peak season, it may take an hour to get through the park entrance. There is a form that needs to be filled out and they search your vehicle.

The cost for international visitors to get into the park is R280 per person.

What to Expect on The Kayak & Lilo Adventure in Tsitsikamma

Depending on how calm the Indian Ocean is you can start kayaking from Storm River Harbor under the famous suspension bridge or if it is not calm enough you will hike across the suspension bridge through the Tsitsikamma Forest and starts higher up the river mouth.

Plan to arrive 15-30 minutes early to allow plenty of time for check-in and change of clothes if needed. After the safety briefing, we started with the hike through the forest and across two suspension bridges to the launching point. Since there were not enough kayaks for everyone and we needed to wait, one of the guides took us under the suspension bridge to the wide-open ocean.

Kayaking & Lilo Adventure in Tsitsikamma National Park
Suspension Bridge | Kayaking & Lilo Adventure in Tsitsikamma National Park

That was a bit nerve-wracking as waves are massive and seeing and hearing them crash against the cliffs reminds you every time of the power they have.

On our way back, we continued to kayak up the majestic Storms River, through the river gorge. It felt like being in The Narrows, except kayaking through the water, instead of hiking this time. We paddled into the bat’s cave and spent time gazing in awe at the spectacular cliffs all around us.

The kayaking portion of the adventure is in the ocean, and it is considered a shark nursery for five different kinds of sharks. Would not advise swimming in this part.

Kayaking & Lilo Adventure in Tsitsikamma National Park
Kayaking in Storms River Gorge | Kayaking & Lilo Adventure in Tsitsikamma National Park

After kayaking, you will get out of the kayak, walk a short distance and hop on the lilo. Lilo is an inflatable raft-like floaty. You will lay on your stomach and using your hands paddle up the river to the next stopping point.

The water here is fresh river water (no sharks) and your hands will get cold quickly but you are surrounded by beauty and tranquility so you forget about the hands quickly.

Additionally, you may get an opportunity to balance yourself standing up on the lilo or plunge into the cold water depending on your balance. And jump off cliffs into the deep pools along the river.

Once the lilo adventure is over, you hop back into the kayak and paddle back to where you started.

Tips for The Best Experience in Tsitsikamma National Park

Make sure you wear appropriate clothes. Everything on you will get wet, so swimsuits and quick-drying clothing. Sun protection, sunglasses, and a hat are strongly recommended but nothing of high value in case you lose them.

You can rent a wet suit and waterproof booties at the location.

Bring a change of clothes and a towel for after the adventure as well as water and snacks.

Other Adventures Inside Tsitsikamma National Park

This park offers cabin-style or camping accommodation, as there is a lot to do here, and one could spend a few days exploring.

Outside of kayaking and lilo adventure, there are plenty of hiking trails in the park to explore.

The coastline is just stunning, you can spend a day just walking up and down the coast, snorkeling, or diving. Or hop onto the Spirit of Tsitsikamma boat ride.

And finally, the world’s highest bungee jumping bridge is just a short ride away from the park 😊

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