storms river mouth, tsitsikamma

Garden Route Road Trip Part 3: Tsitsikamma to Port Elizabeth

We spent the next two nights of our Garden Route Road Trip in a cute little country cottage between the city of Plettenberg Bay and Tsitsikamma National Park with a couple of donkeys and about twelve dogs for neighbors. It was a perfect spot to wait out the rain we got the last couple of days of the trip. Rain was unfortunate, but it didn’t stop Chas from keeping his booking at Bloukrans Bridge to do a 216-meter bungee jump—the highest commercial bungee jump in the world!

Some people get a rush from jumping off really high things. I get nausea and panic attacks, so I decided to forfeit a jump in place of being Chas’s “buddy.” This meant I got to walk across the pedestrian bridge under the bridge (enough adrenalin for me, thanks very much) and watch him and a group of about 15 others jump. The bridge was so scary to me that instead of following the others’ directions of “don’t look down,” I didn’t even look ahead. I had to stare at the ceiling the entire walk just to make it to the jump area.

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Bloukrans Bridge

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The bridge to the jumping area—scariest part of the whole day.

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After a surprisingly short safety talk, the jumpers were strapped up and the fun began. Face Adrenalin has a 100% safety rating, which is really comforting, and the guys organizing the jump make the whole process so much fun. They have a resident DJ that plays loud music the whole time to keep energy up, and even in the rain, the guys were constantly singing and dancing as they worked.

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Not only did I not jump, the guys gave me a blanket so I’d be more comfortable. I’m so brave!

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Getting strapped in!

 

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Regretting things?

I made sure Chas tied his shoes tighter than was comfortable and also made the guys double check his ankle straps. They made me give Chas a “final goodbye kiss,” which wasn’t a great way to settle the nerves.

Then it was show time! They help the jumper hop over to the edge, where they must peek their toes over and hold out their arms. Then, they yell “Three, two, one…bungee!” and push you off.

Just kidding, you can always change your mind if you want, but no one did. Including me, though they did try to convince me to jump.

You just have to watch the video below. It’s incredible!

bungee jumping bloukrans bridge with face adrenalin, tsitsikamma south africa

Chas being rescued and brought back up by the Bloukrans Bridge Superman.

They give you a really cute certificate that is definitely going be the deal breaker between getting a job or not, and a lanyard with all your pictures and videos. As we were walking back to the car, I made Chas hold out his certificate in front of him, and the people walking in as we were walking out definitely cheered for him. What a proud moment in the parking lot!

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With adrenalin still high, we headed further into Tsitsikamma to Storms River Mouth, a rest camp with lots of hiking trails and a restaurant-with-a-view. It was still rainy, but we made the best of it by exploring the Storms River suspension bridges, which span over the mouth of the river before it reaches the Indian Ocean. We didn’t know anything about the place before driving in, so it was more than a pleasant surprise to stumble upon such a beautiful part of the coast.

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Lunch with a view.

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Storms River Mouth suspension bridges

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Yeah yellow poncho!

We headed back to the cottage to make a fire and braai, since it was the final night of our trip. The next morning, we reluctantly made our way to the airport in Port Elizabeth, via Jeffreys Bay, where we stopped for a quick lunch and a sunbath. It was finally sunny again, and a short stop at the beach was the perfect cap to an epic road trip across the coast of southern South Africa.
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