Tucked between mountain and sea and featuring fynbos-covered hiking trails, a number of beaches, two lagoons and a meandering wine valley, Hermanus is one of the most popular destinations for both locals and international travellers.
A bustling harbour town on the edge of Walker Bay, Hermanus is not short of shopping opportunities or lively bars and restaurants to try.
But the main attraction visits between June and November. During whale season, Southern Right Whales come to the South African coast to mate and calve, with calving usually happening during August and September, and the height of the whale season taking place between August and October.
A cliff path, stretching from one side of the town to the other, hugs the coastline for about 12km and gives whale-watchers unlimited opportunities to study these gentle giants in beautiful Walker Bay.
Hermanus boasts the best land-based whale-watching in the world, and offers boat-based whale-watching to get you even closer to the whales. Hermanus also hosts the famous Whale Festival that takes place in September, when the little town almost overflows with visitors.
Accommodation in Hermanus is plentiful, but it gets booked up over school holidays and during festival time so you would be advised to book in advance.
Hermanus is fast becoming an eco-adventure playground. With activities such as sea kayaking, abseiling, lagoon-canoeing, sand-boarding, paragliding, horse-riding, scuba-diving, sailing, and of course whale-watching, visitors are never short of things to do and see.
Telescopes situated alongside the Old Harbour Museum make it possible to survey the entire Walker Bay and the whales and dolphins at close range.
While in Hermanus, make sure you don’t pass up the quaint little museum on the harbour’s edge – the whale song playing in the background comes live from underwater microphones in the bay.
From Hermanus it’s a beautiful drive through Overberg Country to the southern tip of Africa at Cape Agulhas, officially the point where the Atlantic and Indian oceans meet.
Drive around the bay to the sheltered whale-watching spot at De Kelders, explore the quaint mission station at Elim and the traditional fishing village at Arniston – there’s so much more than whales to keep you busy in this part of the Western Cape.
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