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Hermanus Snapshot

Hermanus (125km from Cape Town) vies with Plett as the Cape’s Riviera. It has lots of whales in season (you ain’t kidding!), holiday accommodation bursting at the seams, and a strip of fast food-chains stretching from one end of town to the other. You either like Hermanus or you don’t. The coastline and surrounding landscape is certainly lovely, and the main town square is a nice spot to hang out, but whatever you do, don't arrive expecting a quaint fishing village (as the local tourism office would like you to believe), because the town has outgrown much of its original character. Also don't assume you will land bum on beach because most of the available accommodation is miles from the sand and water. With so much available best you make direct contact with the local Info office - which carries a mixed bag of granny flats and other accommodation.

Things To Do

  • Hermanus has several beaches, each with different appeal. Die Plaat is an impressive 12km stretch of white sand, extending from the lagoon mouth to De Kelders. The tidal pool near the Marine Hotel is the only accessible swimming spot near the town centre as the rest of the immediate coast is craggy rock.
  • Climb to the top of Hoy’s Koppie where Sir Hoy and his wife Gertrude are buried. Survey the expanding sprawl below and tell us that Hermanus is a holiday village, as the local publicity office would like you to believe.
  • Stroll along the cliff paths stretching from one end of town to the other – a pleasant morning and late-afternoon experience. Take in the Old Harbour, cavorting whales and a coffee shop or two along the way.
  • Fernkloof Nature Reserve offers soothing respite from the bustle below. The reserve has over 50km of trail, picnic spots, great views and impressive flora that is at its flowering peak in spring.
  • For views without sweat, a drive along Rotary Way unveils a vista of Walker Bay and the Hemel-en-Aarde Valley.
  • Some of the country’s top wines come from three wineries in the picturesque Hemel-en-Aarde Valley. Hamilton Russel Vineyards scores consistently high with its chardonnay, as does adjacent Bouchard Finlayson, while newish newcomer, Whale Haven Winery is gradually becoming known for its merlot. All three offer tastings from Monday to Friday and Saturday mornings.
  • For places to eat, the sidewalks of Hermanus are neon-lit by franchised fast food outlets and independent coffee shops. Just like home. At last count there were more than 50 eateries listed on the town’s website - that was some time ago, so the actual number is likely far higher today.
  • Yikes, we almost forgot! Hermanus offers some of the world’s best land-based whale watching. Again, the cliffs along the seafront provide the best vantage point.
Getaways in and around Hermanus
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Babylon's Tower Cottage & Shepherd's Hut

Hermanus, Western Cape

Private farm cottage and shepherd's hut with open views over the Hemel en Aarde valley - 15km from Hermanus

Big on farm vibe and gob-smacking mountain vistas, this one will have you in it's grip in no time. Whether you're opting for the Cottage's long voorstoep spilling gentle Hemel en Aarde vistas, an eleg...

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Whalers Self-Catering Holiday House

Hermanus, Western Cape

Relaxed four-bedroom house within walking distance of central Hermanus - in Hermanus

With a casual and relaxed holiday vibe, Whalers is a simple, yet comfortable four-bedroom home that's an easy walk from the Hermanus town centre, it's coastal path and the seafront.  Taking a po...


Klein Watervalplaas

Hermanus, Western Cape

Smallholding in the Hemel en Aarde Valley with three cottages - 23km from Caledon (& 30km from Hermanus)

Geez, talk about setting the bar high! If the gushing and poetic feedback we've received on Klein Watervalplaas is anything to go by, this new getaway spot in the Hemel en Aarde Valley is a Budget gem...

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Rustic Hideaways @ De Werf Country Estate

Hermanus, Western Cape

Four traditional farm cottages and one modern house on a Hemel en Aarde Valley farm - 11km from Hermanus (along the R320 towards Caledon)

Beautifully positioned amidst the rolling hills of the Hemel en Aarde Valley, Rustic Hideaways not only lies within easy reach of Hermanus, but is also within easy strike of a platter of quality wine ...


Clouds End Cottages

Hermanus, Western Cape

Three characterful cottages with mountain vistas on a fruit farm in the Hemel en Aarde Valley - 11km from Hermanus

Clouds End Farm (11km from Hermanus) gets its name from the wisp of cloud that so often blankets the tallest peak of Babylon’s Toring. Not only might this creamy wisp be a familar sight on your...

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Whale Time

Hermanus, Western Cape

A 10-sleeper heritage house in the centre of Hermanus - in Hermanus

Tucked away on a quiet street, right in the heart of Hermanus, Whale Time ranks among the original Hermanus cottages, Lovingly restored, yet retaining plenty of charm and character, it sits a fe...