The Little Karoo is the hot, dry region squeezed between the Outeniqua Mountains that separate it from the green and luscious Garden Route, and the rugged Swartberg Mountains that separate it from the wider, hotter Great Karoo.

The well marketed Route 62 extends further than the actual R62, including parts of the Breede River Valley. It's a lovely, quiet alternative to the rather more goal-oriented N2, passing through some interesting little towns and winds its way past loads of wineries and guest farms that specialise in rugged activities like 4x4 trails and quad bike trails. The major part of Route 62 runs straight through the Little Karoo towns of Ashton, Montagu, Barrydale, Ladismith, Calitzdorp, Oudtshoorn and De Rust.

It's a lot of fun to zig-zag backwards and forwards between the N2 and the R62 over some very scenic mountain passes, alternating between the lush green Garden Route and the drier, more austere Little Karoo. Most well known for its ostrich farms, which have developed into mega tourist traps, the Little Karoo supports a thriving agricultural industry. Olives, deciduous fruit and wine add to the rather heady mix that most local restaurants exploit gleefully.
Calitzdorp, which is most well known for its great port, holds a port festival every July, and there are fabulous wine farms along the whole length of the R62. Probably the most well known attraction in the region, though, is the enormous Cango Caves in Oudtshoorn. There are some great rock paintings in various parts of the Little Karoo.

The magnificent landscapes, locally known as red hills, offer some fun day walks, and the high mountains on either side of this long, thin valley, offer fantastic multi-day hikes. There are loads of really great cultural attractions, not least of which is the annual KKNK, the Klein Karoo Nasionale Kunstefees (Little Karoo National Arts Festival) in Oudtshoorn. It's a party. Big time.

Little Karoo Fun Rating

from 153 customer reviews
4 out of 5 stars!

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Calitzdorp Calitzdorp
Town of Little Karoo

Small town but big in attitude
Calitzdorp is a very small town surrounded by wine farms and cellars; a few farms and cellars are actually part of the village. There is also a lovely circular route on a dirt road leading from the village where visitors can do sight-seeing. Without stopping at the attractions along the route, it will take more or less 1-2 hours to complete.It is also possible to take a historical walking tour through the village. Another advantage is that it is only 42km from Oudshoorn.
Alwine Pretorius
South Africa

De Rust De Rust
Town of Little Karoo

Tweets from De Rust
Lovely quaint town, with very friendly people. It has beautiful views across the Karoo landscape from many view points in the town. The flora supports a loud thriving bird life and on a short walk through town we saw many species.
Stephanie Muller
South Africa

Oudtshoorn Oudtshoorn
Town of Little Karoo

Passing Through
Just slept there for one night. Ate out at the Black Swan - food was great - would really recommend it. Stayed at The Best Little Guest House - also fabulous. and of course cannot go to Oudtshoorn without buying slippers for my kids and grand kids at So Nice - thanks for opening the shop for us.Love Oudsthoorn hope to stay longer next time.
Rob Barr
South Africa

Oudtshoorn Oudtshoorn
Town of Little Karoo

Enjoyed it here
Lots to do and friendly people.
tekarra valiulis
South Africa

Calitzdorp Calitzdorp
Town of Little Karoo

Karoo life
Wine wine wine, great people and beautiful buildings!
Clerice Muller
South Africa

Oudtshoorn Oudtshoorn
Town of Little Karoo

Outstanding Oudtshoorn
Lovely place to visit. A good base to drive the wonderful passes, visit Prince Albert, the Kango Caves, the Ostrich Farms, there is a lot to do in Oudtshoorn.
Tienie Beugelsdyk
South Africa

Oudtshoorn Oudtshoorn
Town of Little Karoo

Oudtshoorn - a gem
We were so impressed with Oudtshoorn. Very clean and with an excellent, modern Spar in one of the main roads going into town.Loved the Cango Caves (such beautiful scenery also on the way there) and the Wildlife Ranch. Will recommend it to anyone who wishes to go there. Great for the kids!
Marelie Greeff
South Africa

Oudtshoorn Oudtshoorn
Town of Little Karoo

Relaxed Town
Nice old town and interesting to wander around. Buy your ostrich eggs and feathers from the ladies by the museum - much cheaper.
Philip Spicer
Ethiopia

Oudtshoorn Oudtshoorn
Town of Little Karoo

Holiday destinition
Good.
adam felix
South Africa

Calitzdorp Calitzdorp
Town of Little Karoo

Great town
Calitzdorp is a lovely town with some excellent restaurants. It's friendly, very clean and welcoming to visitors.
Jaco Cloete
South Africa

Oudtshoorn Oudtshoorn
Town of Little Karoo

Oudtshoorn Dec 2014
Our car broke down and we were helped quickly and efficiently by the friendly staff of GM. Oudtshoorn is a lovely clean town, with no potholes and the friendliest people I have ever encountered. Lots of restaurants, Cango Caves, Ostrich Farms and George, Hartenbos and Mosselbaai just an hour's drive away.
Louise Van Zyl
South Africa

Oudtshoorn Oudtshoorn
Town of Little Karoo

Ostriches are just the beginning
I remember when Oudtshoorn was a stop on the way to the sea, with the curiosity of the ostriches and wonder of the caves as it's only attraction. The caves, still wonderful, may however now be bit overshadowed by all the other activities. With the Cheetah park, and elephant, meerkat and ostrich adventures to be had, it hardly leaves time to explore the neighbouring towns.
Suren Putter-Lareman
Australia

Oudtshoorn Oudtshoorn
Town of Little Karoo

Oudtshoorn
Although my trip to Oudtshoorn was not one for leisure, what I did see of the town was very impressive. The residents of Oudtshoorn that I interacted with were all very friendly. I will definitely be visiting this lovely town soon for a bit of rest, relaxation and sight seeing.
Denise Randall
South Africa

Barrydale Barrydale
Town of Overberg

Nice little town
We had a short but nice stay there. Small town, but has all the necessary amenities - bank, restaurants, little shops, beautiful church, etc.Offers good value on property.
Jakkie De Lange
South Africa

Oudtshoorn Oudtshoorn
Town of Little Karoo

A quiet town
Enjoy the Cango caves and ostrich rides hehe.
Najaat Parker
South Africa

Oudtshoorn Oudtshoorn
Town of Little Karoo

Holiday
Used the NA SMIT resort as accommodation during SWD Masters Athletics Championships. Good value for money.
Eugene Van Der Westhuizen
South Africa

Oudtshoorn Oudtshoorn
Town of Little Karoo

A quiet city at the end of the Route 62
The Cango Caves is a thing to do in Oudtshoorn. The city is surrounded by desert, ostriches. The nature is very beautiful (Swartberg Pass). I recommend this city.
Astrit Gashi
Switzerland

Oudtshoorn Oudtshoorn
Town of Little Karoo

Near the oude meul
Lots of great touristic attractions.
JJB Nienhuis
Netherlands

Uniondale Uniondale
Town of Little Karoo

Perfect
Josef Schelbert
Switzerland

Oudtshoorn Oudtshoorn
Town of Little Karoo

Cango Wildlife Ranch
Amazing! The best experience of my life with the cheetahs.
trevor anderson
South Africa