The road through the Transkei

When people talk about the Eastern Cape, Wild Coast and Transkei then the road are always one of the first things mentioned. “The road is bad.” “The road is full of potholes.”  “The road this”, “the road that” and “the road whatever”.  I’ve never been further than just past East London and got to fly to Durban every time I had to go to Indaba.  The only time I drove to KwaZulu Natal I went via the Eastern Free State to avoid “this terrible road”.  That was until May this year when I had to drive to Durban for the annual Tourism Indaba and decided to have a look at what the Transkei really looks like. 

What an absolute surprise.  The N2 main road through the Transkei isn’t anything like what everybody have always said it was.  Makes me wonder how many of those people have been on it lately.  Yes the taxi’s often drive just like they want, but they do it everywhere else as well.  Animals stray onto the road , its the Transkei after all.  But if you don’t drive like an idiot then you can easily avoid them.  Umthata gets hectic with its speed bumps and peak hour traffic on a Friday afternoon.  Sit back and enjoy the song playing on the radio.  You can speed along shortly again.  The dirt roads and some secondary tar roads are in a bad condition, but the main road through the Transkei is anything but bad.  Big sections of the road have been fixed or totally overhauled with road works still taking place further north, but otherwise the road is in an excellent condition and well worth driving with its typical Transkei landscapes and scenes.  So next time you have to go from KZN towards the Port Elizabeth and Garden Route area (or vica versa), give the N2 through the Transkei a chance.  You won’t be sorry. 

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