"Great Place to See Whales" Top 5 Page for this destination Hermanus by TRimer
Hermanus Travel Guide: 79 reviews and 139 photos
The town of Hermanus got its name from Hermanus Pieters, an itinerant teacher and sheep farmer. He first came to the Cape in the early 1800's, and settled in the Caledon district. He brought his sheep to the coast for grazing. After that came fishermen and holiday makers from the Cape. In 1902 the name of the little village was Hermanus Pietersfontein, and latter abbreviated to Hermanus. It is also referred to as the Riveria of the South.
Famous for its long stretches of beach, mild climate, rich floral kingdom and friendly environment, Hermanus offers the best shore-based whale watching in the world.
Every year around July, locals eagerly await the arrival of special guests of honor, the Southern Right Whales. These visitors are an endless source of delight as they gambol in Walker Bay, in easy view of the cliff paths. They favour the relatively shallow waters of the bay for breeding and mating. Southern Right whales can be distinguished from other whales from its V-shaped 'blow' and the callosities which appear around its head. Peak times for seeing whales daily are from August to November, tailing off in December.
Hermanus even has 'the world's only whale crier', Wilson Salukazana, who blows a horn made of sea bamboo to tell people that whales are in view. He will answer the questions of every eager tourist. The whales seem to appreciate an audience and provide spectacular entertainment.
Many artists have established themselves in Hermanus and surrounding villages of Onrus and Vermont. Potters and painters, sculptors and master chefs, jewellery designers and writers all add to Hermanus. Visitors will discover several studios and shops, when exploring the side streets. I was able to find a great little shop selling handicrafts from all over South Africa- including a ceramic tile with a carved woman and wire christmas ornaments.
The Lemm's Corner Craft Market is transformed every weekend into a bustling marketplace. All products are handmade and unique. In addition to paintings, ceramics, woodwork, metalwork, carpets, hand-painted linen, African curios and clothing, there is also an interesting collection of home-made foods on sale.
- Pros:Great Whale Watching
- Cons:Not a great selection of restaurants and shops
- In a nutshell:Great whale watching a short ways from Cape Town
While I really wanted to try out the Milkwood restaurant in town, the manager of our B&B convinced us to try out Harbour... more travel advice
The best thing we liked about our stay at the Whale Cottage B&B was the location. Next door to the Whale Cottage was the... more travel advice
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- "The most amazing coastal town in the Cape"
- "Hermanus and surrounding areas"
- "Great Place to See Whales"
- "Land Based Whale Watching Paradise."
- "Hermanus Bay"
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